One of the most valuable resources that a company can invest in is its people. When invested in properly, your people will be your company’s tool to help drive business outcomes. Want to increase revenue or customers? Turn to your people. While executives can create and reinforce business outcomes, your people are the ones who help drive these outcomes.
In this post, we share four ways to enable your people to help drive business outcomes.
Skill building & education
When it comes to enabling employees, one of the easiest ways to start is by skill building and education. This can be done both inside or outside of the organization. Whether it’s company-mandated training or self-taught continuing education, encourage employees to take on some form of continuing education. Take your employees’ wants into consideration when planning some internal training. Do they want to learn new software? Set up a day or two of training. Do they want to learn something that will help them advance in their career? Help make it happen.
Skill building and education can only be made possible if there are a dedicated budget and funding put in place. Talk to your finance department to see if money can be set aside for education and skill building for your employees. In addition to company training and individual training, consider sending your employees to an industry conference. Not only will your employees get a week’s worth of education, but they will also get a chance to network with others in the industry.
Brainstorming & collaboration
The second action you can take to enable your people is to encourage brainstorming and collaboration across teams. Usually, each department within an organization is comprised of a number of different departments. Have occasional round-table discussions to see how you can work better together. Oftentimes, teams aren’t always aware of what other teams in their department are doing, so this helps shed some light on those projects. More times than not, these projects will be leveraged by other teams in one way or another. Make sure that lines of communication between teams are open to foster collaboration. You want to create an environment within your organization where teams can come together to produce innovative projects.
There are many benefits to cross-team collaboration. For one, it gives a project diverse viewpoints. People come from different backgrounds with different experiences, all of which they bring to the table. The more brains you have working on a project, the better it will be. Additionally, this gives employees a chance to showcase and use their skillset, while learning new skill sets. Plus, this gives your employees an exciting project to work on that is outside of their everyday job scope.
Research & development
Research and development (R&D) is by far the most budget-dependent department in an organization. Simply put, without a budget, R&D is not possible. In order to make sure innovation is taking place and employees are creating, give them an R&D budget. Make sure they are aware of what the limitations are with that budget by communicating that clearly. Chances are, once employees know that an R&D budget exists, they are going to be more likely to utilize it. This tool is a combination of skill building and collaboration, leveraging both to create a new product or solution. These products or solutions can be used internally and if successful, externally.
Have a shoestring budget but still want to encourage innovation? Have an internal contest, whether it be across the company or a department. Employees can team up and pitch a project. If chosen, they can create a prototype, be judged for it, and the winning project gets produced. This motivates employees to collaborate with one another and put their skills to the test to create something that can better the company’s operations or enhances customer experiences.
The last way to enable your people is by implementing expert teams. Experts, or subject matter experts (SMEs) often times know more about a product or solution by way of education or experience. These are the people who can help you write your content or create a new product. Enlist these experts to develop expert teams, taskforces so to speak, to work on special projects. Take a look at some of the campaigns your company is running and see where you can infuse SMEs in various areas to create a team. Create the dream team by choosing people from across teams—marketing, product, PR, social, and more.
When working with expert teams, you will be able to put everyone’s best skills to use and towards a common goal. Brainstorming and collaboration will take place, as will R&D to come up with the best product or solution that will benefit the whole company. Leverage expert teams as much as you can in your organization; they will take you further and give your employees a purpose.
By giving your employees the tools you need, you can enable them to give you the business outcomes you desire. Start enabling your employees today!