As another year comes to an end, you may be starting to evaluate how things have gone. It’s once again time to evaluate yourself, your team, and your business in 2021 and consider what you might do differently next year. While you no doubt have plenty of ideas on how you can improve processes, team output, and more, keep in mind that growth needs to come from the top, too. As such, it pays to keep trialing new leadership strategies to help your organization soar.
Here are three ideas you might consider as the New Year arrives.
1. Encourage cross-pollination in your workforce.
The first idea to consider is cross-pollination.
The traditional office setup keeps workers divided into disparate departments that often never talk and have different functional expertise related to the tasks they do. This year, consider moving your people about from time to time.
“Cross-pollination” simply means employees try out different jobs or at least work with those in other areas often. Through this arrangement, people share knowledge and better understand what’s happening across the organization. They see how things work in other areas. They learn about and from each other in helpful ways.
The dissemination of ideas and the development of greater connections between workers allow them to make quicker and more accurate decisions. Employees avoid mistakes simply because they have a panoramic and realistic view of the business at large. Employees will adapt more quickly and be able to take advantage of great opportunities as they arise, too.
All of this increases competitiveness and creates more cohesive teams. In turn, employees will tend to be less likely to feel disconnected or bored in their roles. You should notice lower staff turnover rates and higher productivity in turn.
2. Invest in developing your team members.
These days, no matter the industry, workers tend not to stay in the same roles for all that long.
Most people have a variety of jobs across their careers. They aren’t content to keep doing the same thing year after year without new challenges. This means managers must find ways to motivate employees to stay on board with the firm. The goal is to retain all that helpful business knowledge and training.
One of the best leadership strategies is to invest in developing team members. If employees can grow and learn new things professionally and personally, they shouldn’t feel such a need to look elsewhere for interesting work.
There are multiple ways to help people adapt and grow. For instance, pair staff members with qualified internal or external mentors they can learn from or set up in-house or other training for people to complete on relevant topics.
You might like to pay for people to complete higher degrees or certificates so they can use what they learn in their jobs. They’ll feel happy about progressing with their education at the same time. You could hire informative, motivational, and inspirational speakers to come in and present to your teams, too.
You might even send people off to attend key industry events such as trade shows or conferences, potentially even speaking at them. Another idea is employee exchanges, where chosen personnel spend time working in and learning from another company for a period.
Remember that regular feedback is critical to help employees learn and grow and achieve goals. Invest in comprehensive performance management tools to help you handle not just annual performance reviews but more regular feedback sessions, too.
3. Be open and allow additional flexibility.
Before 2020, more and more employers were open to allowing workers to have more flexible hours and work from home.
However, the global pandemic made home-based work a necessity for many. It showed many managers how feasible this type of setup could be. You may like the idea of getting everyone back on site again permanently after a challenging couple of years. However, it’s worth considering remaining flexible.
Many employees appreciate having the chance to set their own hours and not having to commute long distances. Plus, people often notice they’re less stressed when they can work at least some days at home. They become more productive with fewer distractions and meetings to contend with.
Also, keep in mind that there have been significant changes happening in work styles over the last few years. Increasing numbers of people are choosing an independent contractor or freelance work over full-time roles. Many companies are finding that this situation works better for them and their finances, too. As such, be open to people choosing the work type that suits them best. Do, however, also find ways to ensure those who aren’t in the office regularly remain a cohesive part of the team.
These are just three of the key leadership strategies that can assist you in getting results next year and in the coming ones. Test them out and see what works well for your organization today.