As a manager you know you are responsible for the people who report to you. Sounds simple until you start to dig a little. Then you discover this responsibility is far reaching. We all understand what it means to be responsible for physical wellbeing. In an office environment this would include a ‘fit-for-purpose’ workspace/desk, equipment etc. In a laboratory it would mean having access to the correct protective clothing, equipment and more. Health and Safety covers off all the physical aspects of the work environment (and it’s a legal requirement!).
But it’s not all physical
It’s the other areas of this responsibility, the mental and emotional wellbeing, that managers tend to struggle with. These may be harder to gauge but for any effective manager, signs will be picked up in on-going conversations with staff.
How do I get good at it?
If you don’t know the signs of stress or the triggers, ask to get some basic training in this area, alternatively, watch how others who are good at this do it. If your people are having a hard time at work, first make sure that you aren’t a contributing factor!
We never truly know the ups and downs in anyone’s lives, don’t let the demands you put on your staff be things they take home and fret about.
And how do I get even better?
Open up and learn to talk, even in a small way, about things outside of work. If you work in a very structured company, with a strong hierarchy, this might seem harder to do. But I can guarantee that the human touch is more need here than in the more relaxed and flatter-structured organisations. Learn to be you, even at work. If you want to read a little more on this topic here’s an earlier blog.
Is it really worth opening up?
If you are interested in helping your staff to find their optimum level of productivity and focus, then yes, it is. Because that’s where true, genuine engagement with your team can lead. Show each one of them you are interested in the ‘whole’ person, not just the part that comes to work in order to work for you, and they will reward you with unstinting support. Invest your time in your staff.
Here’s an example
A senior manager I worked with recently started sitting in the open plan office one morning a week so he could be closer to his team. Within a few weeks he reported a 70% improvement in engagement levels with his team. Impressive!
Think of one thing you can start doing differently to show those you manage, you care about them as people, not just as workers. Share below the thing you’ll be focusing on and we’ll be able to support and encourage you. And of course, start doing it.
Here’s a little gift you can share with them. It’s my eBook ‘7 Guaranteed Ways to Reduce Stress, Stop feeling Overwhelmed at Work and Get Your Life Back’. My pleasure.