Recently our boss, Maren Hogan left all of us in charge of the company while she was gone for the month of July. Some CEOs may think it’s crazy to trust a bunch of 20-somethings to take care of a business, clients and everything else, but Maren tasked us taking care of Red Branch while her and her family were gone. During the course of the month, we had to be responsible, keep clients happy and get all of our work done. This month on our own has given us a deeper sense of accountability, taught us how to take ownership of the company we work for and not relying on the CEO to be the only one that cares. Here are 3 ways to get your employees to act like owners of the business (without having to leave the country to do so).
Give more responsibility
Trust is a big deal for employees – they need this trust. Giving an employee something as simple as job “label” can give them the push to take ownership and pride in not only their work, but the company as well. According to Zanebenefits, an exercise they suggest is:
“Hold a meeting with your employees. Tell them of a certain problem the company is facing and, as a team, come up with solutions. Assign a handful of your employees to carry out the solution. You can take part in the solution as well, but leave the larger parts to your employees. See what they can do and allow them to demonstrate their skills and knowledge.”
Pay attention to who you are hiring
Perhaps the most difficult step is hiring someone you would trust while you’re gone. According to a study by The Corporate Executive Board, managers regret their hiring decisions about 50% of the time. Hire the candidates who have the potential for leadership, have well-rounded communication skills, a strong work ethic and are honest. Don’t hire people just because you need to, hire people who will make the company better.
Invest in their Satisfaction
According to survey by banking firm Kalixa Pro, nearly 49% of employees said they were unhappy with their jobs – so much they considered changing careers. While this survey was at one company, it shines a light on what is happening in the rest of the business world. Employee satisfaction is vital to how they perform at their jobs. The Harvard Business Review released a study that productivity increased by 31% when employees were happy. Things you can do to increase happiness can be to inspire, motivate, increase trust, develop others, communicate powerfully and encourage professional enrichment. Helping employees to become happy can create a positive turn in the business.
“When employees show up to work, do the minimum, assume no responsibility and then collect their paycheck it’s a waste for the individual and for the organization.”
Trying these simple things can increase your productivity and be the very push your employees need to start taking pride in their work and ultimately begin down the path of taking ownership of the company.
Although you might not be leaving to go travel the world, you can still give your employees the same sense of ownership and autonomy. By giving your team more responsibility and paying attention to who you hire in the first place, you’ll have a team set up for success (just in case you do want to get away).