Do you have a sense that your employees are feeling disengaged and do not look forward to come to work everyday? This could be because your employees are not feeling appreciated or valued. The feeling of not being appreciated or valued will lead to an increased disinterest in wanting to do well at work. It is human nature to want to be accepted – if the employees do not feel accepted, they will start to lose interest in wanting to contribute more to the company. When a deserving employee is heard and appreciated for their contributions to the company, they will feel valued.
Here are 11 steps you can take to ensure that your employees feel valued throughout their employee journey.
1. Be clear about what the candidate’s job scope is
You have decided that it is time to hire a new employee, either as a replacement for another employee who is leaving your company, or perhaps because your company is expanding and hence more roles are being created.
When you are uploading job listings, it is good to spend some effort to write out the job description as accurately as possible. This will ensure that you will have a higher chance of attracting an ideal candidate, or at least a candidate who will get the job done. This will also ensure that the candidate does not feel taken aback when they realize that the actual job scope is not what they read in the job description.
2. Have multiple interviews to get to know the candidate better
Congratulations, you have successfully uploaded your job listing and there are potential interviewees lining up to get an interview at your company.
You should not go into the interview thinking that anyone will do. It is important to ensure that the new employee who is joining your company fits in well, otherwise it will be a huge waste of time and money.
Here is what you need to take note of to ensure that you increase the chances of getting an ideal employee:
Employee’s Skill Sets
This is quite straightforward as the employee’s work experience that is reflected in their resume can be used to determine how their skill sets are like. If the employee has never had any work experience, find out more about what they did in school – did they pursue any creative activity like photography, dancing or painting?
Or are they more of the sporty type who enjoys going camping? Did they partake in intellectually stimulating activities like Debate or Band? Were they in any leadership role? All of this can help you understand better what sort of person they are and what they strive for.
Employee’s Attitude and Employee’s Culture Fit
It is important to have good dynamics and this is something that you can take control of when hiring a new employee. After a few rounds of interviews, you should be able to have a rough gauge of what your employee’s attitude is like and whether they will be a good culture fit.
An extroverted person who loves to talk may not make the best developer, even though you have a good impression of them during the interview. A person that you feel like you can gel with personally may not be able to gel well with the rest of the team. Human dynamics are complicated and therefore, you need to take the necessary measures to ensure that the team can get along well, especially since they are going to work with each other for the majority of their time.
When it comes to his or her culture fit, you can consider scheduling a lunch session for the potential employee and existing employees to get to know each other. After this session, you can get feedback from the existing employees to see if they think the new potential employee is a good fit.
3. Have a diversified team
In addition to the culture fit, another thing you need to take note of is what each candidate can bring to the table, so that the team will be more diverse. When each individual knows that they have something unique to offer and also have ownership over their tasks, they will feel more empowered to contribute more.
A team may be disastrous if it is full of the same types of people, e.g. a team full of extroverts will be overly high energy all the time – this may be great if the team is full of salespeople, but it is not great for other types of teams.
Also, if a team is full of the same type of people, there will be less chance of having a diversified range of working styles and ideas. A diverse team is very important so that you can have varying perspectives within the team. There is always a client out there who will prefer a different type of sales or service person. A way to ensure that the new candidate is a good culture fit AND can also bring some diversity to the team is via personality tests. Here are some popular personality tests:
4. Have an onboarding ally for every new employee
It is natural for people to feel uncomfortable when meeting for the first time, even more so if the team is full of awkward people. In our Asian culture, there can be quite a fair bit of hesitancy when someone new joins the team for the first time, where existing staff will just keep to themselves until someone breaks the ice. Hence, as a human resource or department manager, it is important that you take measures to help ease the new employee into the team.
As a human resource manager or a department head, you may have a lot of things on your plate. However, this is no excuse for not properly guiding the new employee on the Standard Operating Procedures and protocols in the company, such as:
- Employee Job Scope
- Organisational Structure
- Time and Attendance
- Appraisal Process
If you lack time to do this properly, you can consider getting a team member to do this instead. Doing so helps you kill two birds with one stone – you can observe how the existing employee guides and also ensure that the new employee gets all the information they need.
An onboarding checklist is vital to ensure that all the employee onboarding requirements are met.
5. Have a clear Probation Review template
The probation review can be a nerve wrecking session between the employer and employee as there may be a chance that both parties have not warmed up to each other yet. It is important to ensure that the probation review is as productive as possible.
To make it productive, have a template that you can run through with each other. The template can consist of a checklist of the employee’s performance, how they can improve and also the Key Performance Indicators that the employee needs to meet by the next review.
Having a Probation Review Template helps ensure that the probation review is as constructive as possible and minimises the chances of the conversation going off tangent.
6. Set clear SMART Goals and KPIs (Key Performance Indicators)
It is important for your employees and overall company to have goals. Goals provide a sense of direction, motivation, and also a clear focus. The S.M.A.R.T Goals method is a great way for goal setting as it is concise and actionable. Here is a free S.M.A.R.T Goals template that you can use to set your SMART goals. Be sure to revisit the employee’s S.M.A.R.T goals at least once every quarter!
7. Have regular check-ins
Instead of having the next appraisal review a year later, it will be much better to regularly check in with the employee to see how he or she is coping. Having regular check-ins can also help both the employee and employer build better rapport with each other.
These regular check-ins do not have to be as formal as the appraisal or probation review. They can be just informal catch ups over lunches where both of you can get to know each other better.
In addition to having regular check-ins, your employee will also appreciate it if you tell them directly what you need them to know (instead of expecting them to find out through the grapevine).
8. Listen to your employees
It is pointless to have regular check-ins if the sole purpose of the check-ins is to simply just check them off a to-do list. It is important to remember that an employer and employee relationship is a two way street.
If an employee constantly has to only do what they were told to do, with no regard for their input, the initially enthusiastic employee will feel drained out eventually. Hence, it is important to ensure that your employee feels that they are being heard. As a manager, this should be a high priority of yours, otherwise, you will constantly find your employee(s) throwing in the letter after just 1-2 years.
9. Have team-bonding sessions
Life at the office should not just be about working without any form of social activity. Treating your employees as simply just ‘Resources’ will eventually lead to them feeling burnt out and make them feel like they are working so hard for nothing. A big part of what makes employees look forward to going to work is the company culture. Every employee wants to go to a company where they can fit in well and are accepted.
Some team bonding sessions that you can consider doing are:
- Go for a team meal sponsored by the company
- Have team exercise sessions
- Have creative sessions (eg baking, candle making, pottery)
10. Have an Appraisal Template
Finally it is the appraisal. The appraisal can take place either quarterly, twice a year or annually. To make the appraisal session more constructive and productive, it will be best to have an actual Employee Performance Review template that the employer and employee can run through together.
The appraisal is also the time where your employee will likely get a pay raise and/or a job promotion. Hence, you need to plan for this ahead of time. Before the appraisal, spend a few hours reflecting on what the employee has achieved for the year so far. Ask the employee to do so too, so that the appraisal will be a more fruitful one.
11. Conduct an exit interview when the employee resigns
Eventually, after 6 months, 1 year, 5 years, 20 years, your employee is going to resign. Most employees who leave want to leave on good terms and want to continue having a positive bond with the company. After all, they did spend a fair amount of time in your company and most definitely would have gone through ups and downs.
Take this chance to thank them for their contributions and also ask for their feedback about their experience in your company.
An Exit Interview is a great way to find out what your organization needs to improve on. Use this Exit interview Worksheet to get constructive feedback from your employee.