Engaging Minds and Hearts- The way forward

This blog post has been written by Amer Haleem, Country Manager, Productized Services, Hay Group India

Over the past few week, I have spoken at length about the five crucial challenges that businesses are likely to face in the next 15 years. Based on our extensive research, I have also tried to provide some solutions for organizations to keep up with these challenges and ensure that your workforce stays switched on! If I had to sum up the basic solution to all these challenges in one word, it would be ‘engagement’. ‘Engaging hearts and minds’ is the only way forward to ensure success. So, here are some quick takeaways to deal with each of these challenges. When in doubt, just refer to this and hopefully you’ll be able to chart a way forward towards engaging your employees.

Engaging Hearts and Minds: Preparing for a changing world – Ben Hubbard from Hay Group on Vimeo.

Transparency

Fact: Organizations need to be transparent- open and honest about how they reward, manage and develop their people

Quick takeaways

  • Assign responsibility for transparency
  • Work with reward colleagues to compare your pay scales
  • Develop a clear reward proposition
  • Create career paths that allow people to reach their potential
  • Review your performance management framework
  • Use your employee survey
  • Monitor external forums in addition to internal sources like the employee survey
  • Establish and monitor real-time, internal feedback channels
  • Assess your leaders’ internal communications

Collaboration

Fact: So here’s the thing. Globalization, coupled with digitization, equals quick change. Keeping up with that implies ‘never-seen-before’ levels of collaboration.

Quick takeaways

  • Embed digital tools to help people work together more effectively
  • Establish formal cross-company teams
  • Encourage communities
  • Consider introducing buddying and mentoring schemes
  • Encourage two-way knowledge sharing between older and younger generations
  • Analyse your employee survey results
  • Make sure you are asking the right questions in your survey
  • Formalize each individual’s role in making collaboration happen, whatever the level
  • Reward and recognize collaborative behaviour
  • Avoid celebrating alpha-type personalities who go all out to beat their targets
  • Make your top team lead by example

Agility

Fact: They say that the only constant is change and this stands to be true, even in the context of the present fluid business environment. An engaged workforce makes an organization agile.

Quick takeaways

  • Reinforce the need for managers to provide ongoing training for their teams
  • Support and promote decision-making at all levels
  • Conduct regular pulse surveys alongside your annual employee survey
  • Assess your communications strategy around change and future company vision and goals
  • Analyze your structure for unnecessary approval layers that delay decision-making
  • Assess where digital tools can speed up decision-making and problem-solving

Innovation

Fact: The biggest mistake an organization can make at this point is to believe that innovation is limited to the job profile of R&D

Quick takeaways

  • Generate a culture of innovation
  • Assess your leaders’ styles
  • Create clarity
  • Reward and recognize innovation
  • Foster collaboration
  • Bring new ideas and thinking into the organization
  • Make innovation part of your recruitment strategy
  • Signal that the business supports risk-taking
  • Formalize experimentation
  • Give employees opportunities to listen to and understand customers
  • Encourage innovative thinking from the outset
  • Enable people to be inventive
  • Expand people’s horizon

Productivity

Fact: Focus on innovation, but don’t end up neglecting productivity. Organizations need to focus on operations and ensure that their employees are productive.

Quick takeaways

  • Stay focused- don’t take on all challenges at once
  • Be fair- promote a sense of equality through clear communication
  • Guard against complacency- Avoid the trap of routines
  • Define authority- Clarify employees’ decision- making responsibilities
  • Draw lines of responsibility- Specify accountabilities
  • Emphasize the importance of well-being
  • Assess opportunities for digital tools to increase productivity
  • Don’t be afraid to make bold organizational decisions

It seems like a long to-do list and it won’t be easy to strike the right balance. But, since these are the key challenges of the future- the right time to start paying attention to them is now!

Interested in keeping your workforce engaged and enabled? We now bring to you a very exciting offering. Download our ‘Engaging hearts & minds’ report now to avail the offer.

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