How many of your employees or team members show up energized, enthused and fully engaged each day? How much of their potential do you estimate they utilize on an average day at work? How would it impact your organization or your team’s bottom line if you could increase that by 10%, 20% even 30% or more?
How do you mine the untapped potential of your employees or team?
There are two basic challenges many organizations face:
First, there are workers of all ages who are NOT bringing their whole selves to work… but they WANT TO. What a waste of your most valuable resources. How do you reach out to them? How do you give them the necessary tools, encouragement and support to increase their decisiveness, confidence, creativity and commitment to your organization?
Second, boomers are leaving the workforce at a rapid rate, but millennials demand a more balanced lifestyle or they won’t stay. And simply offering flextime or telecommuting (though helpful) won’t do it. They are searching for more meaningful work. The problem is, even they often only have a vague sense of exactly what that would look like.
So what to do?
As a leader, support your employees and team members in recognizing that it has to begin with THEM, and let them know that what matters to them truly is important, to you and to the organization.
Now, before you think this is too much “fluff”, according to an article in Network of Executive Women magazine, 60% of millennials named “a sense of purpose” as a reason they chose to work for their current employer.
But how do you enhance that sense of purpose for your employees, and how do you keep them there and fully engaged after the “honeymoon” has worn off?
First, through informal conversation, ask them what is really meaningful and purposeful to them. What is it that really makes them tick? What motivates them to jump out of bed in the morning? What keeps them going when the road gets tough? What fills them with excitement and enthusiasm? What do they love about their work? What do they dislike? What first drew them to your industry, your organization? What are their hobbies outside of work?
Help them to discover and articulate their passions. Then explore how they might bring some of that purposefulness, that passion, that fire and enthusiasm to the workplace.
Second, help them clarify their natural strengths and gifts… not just what they happen to do well, but the activities bring them alive when they do them. What are the things that they love to do and have the potential to be the best at. Then look for ways to increase the proportion of time they are engaging their strengths at work
Third, support them in defining their core values. We all have things that are important to us in life. But the top two or three values are integral to who we are. Our core values should be non-negotiable. It’s not possible to be balanced, creative, and fully productive in life if one or more of our core values are being compromised. As a leader, help them to see where their core values and the values of the organization or team intersect and are supportive of each other.
It’s only when we live in alignment with our sense of purpose, our strengths and our deepest values that we truly feel balanced and experience high levels of energy and enthusiasm at work and at home… we experience life at Full Wattage!
The more you can lead your employees to integrate the things that truly matter to them into their professional lives and into your work culture, the more you will harness their previously untapped potential. And they will bring their whole selves to work.
That is true work life balance!
Liz Fletcher Brown empowers leaders to create more balanced and meaningful lives. She uses cutting edge neuroscience, practical tools, humor, and thought-provoking insights to help leaders and aspiring leaders thrive.
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