How to set the pace for your employees in the new year

Many people welcome the new calendar year with the prospect of a fresh start. Managers and business owners can set a positive example of optimism and productivity in the months to come. Here are some key ways to keep your employees motivated.

Establish a Positive Outlook

Maintain an upbeat attitude during the months ahead. While the economy may shift or waver, it will eventually adjust according to previous patterns. Remind your workers that changes are inevitable, but the company will be fine in the long run. Focus on the small successes at first, like meeting monthly quotas or expanding a department’s services, to emphasise the positives of the current situation over future uncertainty. You don’t necessarily have to adopt a false fa├žade that everything is always fine while in the midst of an economic storm or a breakdown of operations, but you can remind everyone that you are all in it together with expansive expertise and capabilities with which to move forward.

Maintain a Productive Environment

Inspect your company’s equipment annually or at the first sign of trouble to ensure everything is working correctly. Make necessary adjustments if needed to support a productive climate on all fronts. Review your company policies and protocols as well as department procedures to see if updates are needed, and make any needed changes promptly with employee buy-in if possible. Adjust short-term and long-term goals within reasonable expectations and provide employees with the know-how and tools to do a good job.

Cultivate a Collaborative Approach

Coordinate committee tasks and department objectives to involve everyone, utilising each employee’s strength and skills. Offer training for those who want to develop new abilities that can benefit the company as well as the employee. Provide workshops to promote diversity understanding and appreciation. Foster an organisational spirit of camaraderie and collegiality in working together to meet company goals while utilising every employee’s potential for individual and corporate success.

Implement Problem-Solving Strategies

Encourage departments or units within the organisation to develop problem-solving approaches for handy reference. This could be managed through an updated procedures manual or monthly meetings that bring employees together to address new issues or concerns. Enabling the departments to take a hands-on approach to solving challenges will enhance their value to the organisation and contribute to employees’ job satisfaction. Rather than insisting that problems be handled by management, a shared approach to problem solving can lessen the burden on each person and expand the range of improvement options.

Encourage Flexibility and Creativity

Although strong leadership is essential, a healthy company also empowers its employees to experiment with flexible new procedures or test creative theories to improve the way they do their job. While practicality may limit the cost and time expended on these initiatives, employees who are valued for ingenuity often end up saving the company money and improving operations. Managers should not condone direct challenges to their authority, but they can establish pathways or opportunities for employees to explore new and potentially better ways of doing things than just following the traditional route.

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