Why Encouraging Employees to Act Like Owners Can Help Spark Major Growth
Increasingly in the new world of work, as the pandemic wanes, employees want to work at a company where they feel like they’re making an impact. Many don’t realize that making an impact isn’t necessarily exclusively about the company’s mission (although that is important, too). It could also be the impact the employee is granted and emboldened to make within the organization itself. What does that mean exactly? Let’s take a look…
Kognitiv Team Core Value: Act Like an Owner
At Kognitiv, one of the many ways we empower our people to take control of their futures and increase employee engagement while growing our business is embodying the value, “Act Like an Owner.”
In our employee handbook, we share:
“We hired you because we think you’re smart. Please use that knowledge to help us better this company and speak up when you have an opinion. Good ideas do nothing when left unsaid.”
Why is this an important value to us?
Because we understand we’re only as strong as our team.
We are confident that we have hired the best of the best, and we must empower them to use that expertise, vision, and skill that we’ve hired them for. The best way to do that is to give them the autonomy to explore, experiment, test, and ultimately devise new solutions for our clients. Even if that means a failure or two along the way, if they’re not empowered to take those steps and spark creative solutions, we’ll remain stagnant as a company.
So, how can you start to build a similar company culture for mutual success and increased engagement?
3 Ways to Implement an “Act Like an Owner” Policy for Business Growth
Here are a few simple ideas to start with:
Introduce Innovation Challenges
Sometimes team members come from companies that don’t value their ideas or shame them for creative problem solving because it’s “not the way things are done.” This can sometimes stifle creativity for the long haul and discourage them from sharing their brilliance. One way to foster a safe space for innovation is to host a challenge. Provide a certain number of resources that will allow teams to work together to solve company challenges or create new services or products. Those ideas can be voted on by a panel for implementation, with prizes and bonuses for great proposals. Nearly 80% of employees say that recognition makes them work harder, and 78% are more productive after being rewarded. So, it’s not only a way to increase ownership and engagement but also enhance productivity!
Make Quarterly Meetings Open Forums
So often, businesses provide quarterly updates with leaders humming about numbers and successes. Take them a step further. While it’s important to be transparent and keep the team in the loop, open the floor to your team too. Ask what’s going well, what ideas they have, what personal successes they’ve had with clients, what challenges they’re trying to remedy, etc. That open forum-style meeting will spark ideas, engagement, and excitement in a way that a typical quarterly company address can’t. And if your team is too large for a format like this, perhaps provide a suggestion or question box where you can address scenarios in the meeting. Or allow each office location or team to conduct similar quarterly strategy sessions with results shared via internal communication channels.
Allow Role Autonomy at All Levels
With a micromanager meddling in every client project or a team member dictating the group’s processes without input from others, no one is going to feel trusted, valued, or encouraged to work hard. As long as you have a culture of accountability with clearly communicated expectations and goals, there’s no reason why employees shouldn’t be trusted to pioneer projects and tasks in their own space within the company without extreme oversight!
We love working with teams that have similar values to our own. If you’re experiencing Workday challenges that are getting in the way of your team’s engagement and productivity, let’s chat. We offer our first 10 hours of consulting free of charge!