The Executive Summary:
Investing in your team is as crucial to business growth and success as investing in growth projects. In spite of the challenges of measuring the direct ROI, the value lies in mitigating the hidden costs of underperformance and inefficiencies.
While businesses readily budget for upgrading equipment and software, leaders often overlook the importance of similarly 'upgrading' their teams through proper training, support, and development initiatives.
A motivated and equipped team is the best asset a business can have. Leaders are encouraged to value their employees, provide necessary training, and invest in leadership and management training, which greatly impacts employee retention.
Motivational Maps, an ISO-accredited tool, are one of the most powerful and easiest ways that leaders can discover what drives their people, unlocking clear strategies to creating a motivated and engaged team.
In the world of business, we often find ourselves excited about investing in new products, equipment, marketing campaigns, and even acquiring other businesses. Yet, it's a rare few who find the same enthusiasm in investing in their teams. 'Paying people should be enough to motivate them' is their motto. This mindset, however, overlooks a crucial aspect of business growth and success - the power of motivated teams.
Whilst we all know that hiring good people right now is more challenging than ever, letting under-performing people go is even more challenging; so much so, that virtually every organisation has people who are routinely underperforming their roles, and are allowed to do so. At the same time, we’re all aware that technology has completely transformed the way that we work, from online payments, to working from home, task management software, VOIP phones, and more. Often, especially in SMEs, we just expect our teams to pick it up, like sponges. But what they do pick up is inconsistent and sometimes incorrect. What we don't see, of course, are those hidden costs of under-performance, of learning on the job, of mistakes, rework, over-engineered solutions, and unbillable time.
While the Return on Investment (ROI) may seem less clear when investing in your team, it is as important, if not more, than investing in your growth projects. These hidden costs are a certainty, with a 100% chance of occurring. In contrast, the success of your growth projects has, on average, just a 30% chance of meeting expectations, based on research by Chris Mason. So, if you budget for upgrading your equipment and software, doesn't it make sense to budget for upgrading your teams too?
Here are our top three tips for creating motivated teams:
Value Your Team: Everybody wants to feel valued, especially by those they value. This requires time, appreciation, and consistency. Research by Engage for Success shows that 'feeling heard' via Employee Voice is vital for employee engagement.
Provide Training and Support: Ensure your team receives the necessary training and resources to perform their jobs well. It’s a leader’s responsibility to keep their teams ‘fit for their own sakes’.
Invest in Leadership and Management Training: We’ve all heard the phrase, ‘People don’t leave companies, they leave managers’. This statement is still true. Gallup's 2023 ‘State of the American Workplace’ study summarised this by stating, “The single biggest decision you make in your job—bigger than all the rest—is who you name manager. When you name the wrong person manager, nothing fixes that bad decision. Not compensation, not benefits—nothing.”
The bottom line is, the most potent investment you can make for your business is in your team. It goes beyond just their salaries. It's about equipping them with the right tools, offering them the necessary training, and fostering an environment that allows them to thrive. It's about cultivating a culture that resonates with respect, integrity, and teamwork.
Now, it's time for you to take a moment and ponder. Are you truly investing in your team? Are you providing them with the resources and training they need to excel? If there's a gap, what steps can you take to bridge it?
Remember, this isn't just about business growth. It's about creating a workspace that people are proud to be a part of, a team that they're excited to contribute to. It's about making a difference, not just in your bottom line, but in the lives of those who help you get there.
So, what's your next move? If you're unsure or need a helping hand, don't hesitate to reach out. We're here to support you in this journey. Because when your team succeeds, so does your business.