Building employee work ethic

Published on: Jan 3, 2014

Are you looking to take your employees’ work ethic to the next level in 2014? Eric Chester, employee expert, author and keynote speaker based in Littleton, Colorado, offered these tips in the January issue of Costco Connection.

  1. Go one-on-one. Managers should work to create the relationships needed to encourage employee engagement. Understand employees’ goals, aspirations, needs, home life, social circles and even hobbies to find ways to relate on an individual level that will increase trust.
  2. Establish a target. If your front-line employees cannot articulate the core values of the business, everything else falls apart. Core values should be brief, bulleted statements that define the values each employee must hold dear, rather than long, jargon-laden mission statements.
  3. Make instructions matter. Consistency in employee expectations is a key factor in successfully igniting the work ethic. Training programs designed around teaching expectations, organizational values and what happens when expectations are not met are critical to success.
  4. Make your success their success. Get creative with public appreciation, incentives, perks and compensation that can be tied to shared goals in order to give employees a sense of achievement, which in turn increases their engagement on the job.
  5. Listen, respond and engage. Continually ask for employee feedback on what will help them deliver better results for the brand and customers. Follow through and take action on their requests.
  6. Light the path. Make the case that your business should be seen as not just a job, but a place to have a career. Communicate to employees about the opportunities for growth within the brand and establish programs that guide high performers along a path that help them to reach high status, responsibilities and compensation in the organization.
  7. Always be canvassing. Managers should be able to articulate their ideal employee profile.  Create a workforce with your ideal work ethic by identifying and reaching potential employees, communicating benefits to potential employees and enticing high-performance employees to identify others similar to them and communicate the brand promise.
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