I learned an important lesson as a manager several years ago. Now, as a business owner, entrepreneur, and business coach, I use that lesson every single day.
The lesson I learned was the one about adults, understanding and acceptance.
When we ask our employees to do something or we charge them with a specific task, it is very important to explain the “why” behind the request. Adults want to understand the bigger picture and how what they are doing fits into it. It’s a lot like the “Why? Why? Why?” phase of toddlers. It’s all about looking for the reason for something or understanding how something works or is supposed to work.
This is especially important at the beginning of the fiscal or calendar year where we roll out strategic plans and set corporate goals. Cluing people in to the part they play in the organization’s success is critical to corporate goal achievement.
When you set up a new project, spend a few minutes with the project manager to let them know how the project they are in charge of fits in with the initiatives for the year. Be sure to tell them to share this with the rest of the project team.
Quick example: Let’s say that you’ve established a goal to increase sales by 50% this year. One of the ways you know to do this is to reach out to some of your inactive accounts to see if you can encourage them back into the fold with some of the new products and services you’ve introduced in the past year. Some employees may consider this a waste of time but if you explain that this is a short cut to reaching that sales goal, you might get better cooperation from your sales team.