A healthy work relationship with employees not only creates a positive work environment but also helps in the growth of an organization. Not much is talked about the boss-employee relationship. Like any other relationship it also has many wavelengths and needs a proper flow to sustain and grow.
A Harvard Business Review survey reveals 58 percent of people say that they trust strangers more than their boss.
If an employee doesn’t trust their manager, the company suffers. Sure, ruling through fear works, but the employee will do the bare minimum amount of work needed to keep their job. Smart leaders know that engaged workers bring creativity and passion to their work, which means more minds seeking more solutions to problems or streamlining processes. All of this is deeply important to beating out the competition, not to mention employee retention: Good employees won’t stay at a dissatisfactory job unless they feel like they lack options. So how can managers establish a relationship of trust with their employees?
Don’t act superior.
As the head of your company, or the manager in your department, you’re already in a position of authority. There’s no need to underline that fact by treating the people who work for you as though they are somehow inferior.
Van Gorder made this vow to himself when he spotted the CEO of a hospital where he was working walking through the facility and attempted to introduce himself. The CEO walked right by as though he wasn’t there. At the time, Van Gorder’s job was as a security guard, which meant the hospital expected him to put his own safety on the line in if a threat arose. “I was at the point of the spear, I was the one dealing with customers,” he says. “Those are the people you have to take care of.”
Tell them your name, not your title.
Depending on the industry, and probably company, you may be compared or labeled as a “manager.” Let your people know that you are a person first and a manager second. Act accordingly. Focus on the human being that is in front of you, get to know them and look for opportunities to say “yes” to them more often.
Appreciate your employees.
Imagine you work in a company and work really hard to meet up the company’s goals and deadlines. Work can make you all exhausted and drained. A simple gesture or a ‘Thank you’ note can lift your mood and keep you motivated.
Give your employees the appreciation they need, they work for you and dedicate a lot of time and effort to your company’s growth. Pat their backs, make them feel special and let them know how much you value their work. Do it honestly and not just for the sake of it. Though it would take very little time to appreciate their good work, for them this can bring a whole new motivation and engagement in their work.
Have an open-door policy.
Make sure that employees feel comfortable to come to you with concerns, new interesting ideas or even complaints. Doing this, you’ll be on your way to creating a strong relationship that is based on a continuous exchange of support. But don’t close yourself in your office – be visibly present to your employees.
While emails might be a more convenient communication method, face-to-face interactions are far more rewarding. It’s just simpler to show that you care about your employees’ opinions and ideas. A word about friendliness. You should be friendly, but not friends with your employees.
An occasional drink after work can be a good strategy to bring the team closer together, but becoming too friendly might easily undermine all the hard work you’ve done so far. Avoid sharing personal stuff with your employees – laugh with them, ask them about their holidays and cats, but at the end of the day remember that your job is to make sure they work well and smart.