How many times do you think you’ve heard the phrase “we’re living in unprecedented times” in the last couple of years? Is it starting to sound meaningless?
For many, the immediate sense of the pandemic threat has passed as people return to the office, travel, dining out and sporting events. What weighs on people’s minds today is the current state of the economy with surging inflation and a looming recession. This leads to a sense of uncertainty and potential instability for teams and leaders alike.
Unique circumstances call for a unique management approach for teams to thrive – which is an essential metric in the new world of work.
What exactly does it mean for an employee to be thriving?
Managers should care whether their team is thriving. A study shows that thriving employees miss less days in the office due to stress and have lower rates of burnout and health problems. Thriving employees have a positive outlook, are happy and energetic. A thriving employee is more productive.
4 Pillars to ensure your team is thriving
Binding your team members through a common sense of purpose can help them find meaning in their work. Microsoft has found meaningful work to be one of the key components of thriving employees. No one wants to feel like another cog in the machine. When people understand why their work matters and how it fits into the bigger picture, they feel like they are part of something larger and are motivated to do their best work.
If the massive rise in the number of participants in the freelance, creator, and gig economies has anything to teach us, it’s that a sense of ownership is more important than ever to employees. No one wants to feel like “just an employee”. Good managers find opportunities to offer autonomy and ownership to team members. Holding your team members accountable is a powerful way to build a sense of ownership. Set clear expectations about the results you want and give them the freedom to achieve their targets in their own ways. It can feel scary for a manager to let go of that sense of control, but when it leads to thriving employees, the effort gives back tenfold.
Supercharge Learning and Development
An important step to creating a thriving team is to offer generous opportunities for growth and development. A recent LinkedIn report found that 59% of respondents see professional development opportunities as one of the top areas to invest in to improve company culture. Helping your team members learn and grow is a great way to ensure they have the skills to respond to challenges and evolve with changing times.
Create a Sense of Community
Belonging is a basic human need. People who have a sense of community at work are 58% more likely to thrive at work, 55% more engaged, and 66% more likely to stay with their company. There are simple ways you can create opportunities for connection. Dedicate the first few minutes of your team meeting catching up with each other on non-work related topics. Organize social activities such as team quizzes and virtual bonding sessions for everyone to get to know each other.
Your company is only as strong as your people. Thriving employees persist and succeed in the face of uncertainty and can help you generate a competitive advantage to stay ahead of the curve.