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December 11, 2009

Building Effective Business Relationships – It’s Just Personal

Building useful relationships in a business world is probably one of the most valuable actions anyone can take. Yet there are many challenges to ensure that it’s authentic and effective at the same time.

Finding a particular trick that makes the difference can save a lot of time and energy, as well as being a very profitable indeed.

We all have a passion.

In us there are certain parts of our lives that are very important to us and we love to spend time with them. These can be the work we do; the people we know; the hobbies and leisure activities we do; or the pets we have and love. In fact, the ‘hot button’ in our lives can be a myriad of things.

When we manage people, we need to engage with them on the most emotional of levels possible, to build the relationship by showing that we care about what’s important to them.

It’s not that we don’t care about their impact on the workplace, but it is more about showing that we know that work isn’t necessarily the most important thing to them in their world.

Once we have the knowledge we need to log into what’s important to them, we have to remember it on those occasions we get into conversations, by showing a genuine interest in the topic.

Whilst in our busy working lives this could be seen to be an imposition we could do without while focusing on the important things we do, it’s important not to underestimate the unseen, yet critical value this focus gives us.

By raising the issue of how their newest grandchild is; or how their scuba diving course went; or (and work is allowed too!); what happened when they were recently interviewed for a promotion, we endear ourselves to those that matter most to us in our work, those team members who deliver for us.

There’s a little more to gain too. When you show interest in what others are passionate about you find it a lot easier to remember names.

You encourage them to be very open with you because you show you care, building trust. You learn much about them that otherwise you would not.

Not least, knowing them better enhances your life too.

By remembering a little about your people, there is much more value to gain than you might expect.

Filed under Blog, Developing Your People, Management Basics, Managing Me by Martin

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Employee Motivation – Here’s the Point

A business is really only as good as its employees. When you find good employees it is worth valuing them, investing in training them and grooming them for bigger and better things.

It takes far more money and time to keep finding new employees than it does to work on the ones you already have and improve staff retention rates.

Employee motivation comes when employees know that they are valued by their employer and they are treated with respect. Employees are more motivated when they feel like their work is being appreciated, they are treated well and that above all, they enjoy their work and like to contribute fully.

While looking after employees well is not rocket science, actively motivating their people is one that is often overlooked or not deemed particularly important by many businesses and organizations.

They could not be more wrong: high employee motivation leads to better performing businesses, because of the well-being of those employed there.

Sound pretty obvious really.

Filed under Blog, Building the Future, Developing Your People, Management Basics by Martin

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