It’s tough to be a leader.
If you are worried some team members are eyeing the door, it’s time to start having career-defining conversations with them. If you are not communicating effectively with them, they will make assumptions.
As a leader, you don’t want your team to feel that you don’t like them.
Employees who feel valued at work are happier, more productive, and less likely to look for another job.
Your team must feel valued and appreciated. They must be part of creating a solid company culture. It starts with you.
When you make sure your team is valued, you build trust that their input, feedback, and ideas matter.
- You boost their productivity because they feel appreciated and will work hard to reach their goals.
- You increase the morale because the team enjoys coming to work every day.
- You increase the chances that your team won’t leave for another company.
- You attract high-quality talent that will help you and your team shine because “A players” attract other “A players.”
To ensure your team feels valued, you should ask your team these seven questions during your next one-on-one meeting or check-in. You want to make sure they feel valued before it’s too late and they are one step out the door.
1. What do you need from me to do your best work?
It’s essential to devote time to your team. You get busy as a leader with meetings, and you get pulled in tons of different directions. You must ensure your team feels like they have the resources they need to do their jobs and that you have their back.
Employees feel valued when they get quality one-on-one time with their leader outside of regular job duties. Please get to know each team member by taking them out to lunch or coffee. Please find out how you can be a better leader for them to do their best work.
Learn how to give better critical feedback throughout the year, so it doesn’t become a surprise during performance reviews. Establish a rapport and more profound connection with them by asking more questions. Also, make sure you praise them for their excellent work with a hand-written thank you note or when you heard they did a fantastic job through colleagues.
2. How would you like to grow within our company?
Discover where your team wants to grow. Find out what career development opportunities they need to seek out and enable them to seize their chances.
- Do they need increased visibility in the organization?
- Do they need mentoring?
- Do they need a challenging special project?
If each team member is growing, they are likely to stay. Become an advocate for their growth and take a player-coach mentality. Help them eliminate barriers and open doors. Please enable them to become their best. Even if you help them so much that they leave your company or go to another department, they will never forget you as a leader who helped them.
Encourage your team to take personal development classes, take free or paid certifications, and attend conferences and seminars. Help them discover new technologies and learn new power skills. If you help each team member manage their schedule, so they have dedicated learning time, they will be thankful that you are inspiring them to grow.
3. Do you feel like there’s a work-life balance?
If your team has a work-life balance, they are more likely to be satisfied with their job and perform well. Help your squad prioritize a balance between working hard and playing hard.
To help your team reduce their stress levels, prevent burnout, and cultivate a strong culture, you should prioritize a healthy work-life balance. To do this, encourage autonomy and promote their physical and psychological health and wellness.
It would help if you also established a culture within the team to establish flexible work hours and work from home setup. Also, be respectful of not emailing them during the weekend or late at night. When you show that you care about their well-being, you can help them improve their work-life balance.
4. Do you feel a sense of purpose in your job?
This question will help you connect their personal values to the organization’s values. Find out what’s meaningful to them and connect the dots for how their job helps the overall company.
During team meetings and one-on-one meetings, highlight how their job impacts the department and the company. Emphasize how their role fits into the bigger picture. Show them that a little mundane task is critical to the team and company’s success. Look for ways to find how each team member can take their meaningful work up to the next level and earn a promotion.
When your team understands how their hard work plays a role in something bigger, they feel more valued by you and your company. Don’t focus on the word “purpose” but rather on “connection” because a sense of purpose is driven by how the company helps others.
5. Do you believe the company is acting on feedback?
Have a discussion to learn how the company is doing when it comes to day-to-day operations. Find out if they feel the company could be doing better in specific areas and how you can help them influence those areas.
Feedback is valuable, and when they share their feedback, your team wants to know how you, as a leader, are helping the company act on that feedback. Your team has excellent ideas that can lead to improvements.
Your team will feel valued if they feel they are heard
You must respect this feedback and foster it. When you show your team that you value their feedback, they are more likely to continue giving it to you. Establish trust with your team, so you get quality and honest responses and not just what they think you want to hear.
6. Are you able to do your best work every day?
This question helps you identify their strengths. You must figure out if they are playing to their strengths every day. You could perhaps ask them a follow-up question such as: “What tasks would you eliminate if you could?”
When you know what tasks they don’t enjoy doing every day, you’ll be able to make changes to ensure they stay at your company. You don’t need to make promises that you will eliminate all the work they don’t like. You must show them that you are working to enable them to do their best work every day.
7. Are there specific activities we should be doing as a team?
This question drives home if they feel like part of the team. Research has shown that employees who have friends at work are more successful in their careers. It’s essential to host events outside of work to thank your team and show them that you value them.
Activities include a happy hour, a catered retreat, or a lunch get-together. Be creative and work with your team to find the best options, given their personal obligations. You could do things like a fitness outing or having a volunteer day together. When the team has team-building experiences and feels like being part of something special, they are more likely to stick around and feel valued.
Bringing It All Together
As a leader, it’s essential to make sure your team feels valued, appreciated, and satisfied. When your team feels valued, they will feel energetic and are more likely to produce excellent results.
They will be motivated, committed, and appreciated and will think less about leaving the company for greener pastures.
Make sure your team feels valued, and you treasure their insights. Seek their input by asking them these questions. You may discover something that will give you a new perspective on how you lead your team.
If you don’t value your team, they will eventually find a leader who does.