Expand Your Employees' Awareness
Your initial approach is to bring your employees to a point of living in tune with their surroundings. Specifically, get them to reach an expanded state of awareness. Awareness, in this framework, takes into account the following issues: how competitors’ actions could disrupt your plans, how to interpret market events and their impact on your strategies, and how to draw correct conclusions from market intelligence to create new opportunities. Therefore, your purpose is to get your employees to look outside their four walls and understand the wider competitive world. Through online communications, face-to-face informal meetings, or weekly or monthly briefings, update your staff about markets, industries, and competitive conditions. These serve several purposes, among them:
You recognize the value of providing your staff with substantive market and competitor information.
You motivate them by providing a venue so they can participate with fresh insights.
You tap their diversity, thought patterns, experiences, and collective knowledge, thereby integrating individuals and their functions.
You obtain viewpoints that can provide useful perspectives and constructive comparisons.
You bring unity to your group.
Such sessions will be worth your time and effort. The major outcome will be that you awaken your staff to internalize that you and they walk together on a very narrow path, which includes numerous visible and unseen obstacles. The most important issue is not to be afraid. Then, if there is a balance of a positive mind-set linked with an objective interpretation of market events, success is weighted heavily in your favor.
Increasingly, a wide variety of communications vehicles permit you to take the high road and initiate programs and exchanges of information. Such is the case with the mushrooming use of social networks, blogs, e-mail, instant messaging, video conferencing, corporate wikis, and the like. Also, face time, thought to be outmoded by electronic communications, is still prevalent and noticeably on the increase.
And where there is a heightened diversity in the workforce, the need to unite individuals around a common goal intensifies. Individuals tend to be wherever their thoughts are. You want, therefore, to make certain their thoughts, as well as your own, from a business viewpoint, are where you would like them to be.
Therefore, stay close to your employees, so that you can sensitize yourself to their thoughts, moods, temperaments, and increasingly the nuances of their local cultures. All the while, your aim is to integrate them into the mainstream of your company’s goals.
Doing so also allows you to focus individuals’ attention on constructive projects that can take even a sketchy idea and convert it into a new product or service. Consequently, the exciting possibility exists for an embryonic innovation to sprout into a new revenue stream.
Otherwise, without some guidance, their creative thoughts would radiate like sunbeams. At first, they seem solid until you try to grasp them. You thereby lose the potential value of huge business-building resources.
Thus, reach out to the special needs of your employees and focus on sustaining their psychological well-being. As a result, you should see tangible improvements in performance, innovation, and employee harmony.