Many years ago, we had a leader say to us, “I’d be a great leader if it weren’t for those d@mn people!”

We had to laugh, because of course, being a great leader is all about those d@mn people. We’re seeing the importance of keeping people central as organizations experience The Great Resignation, that we talked about last week.

As you may recall, Philip Kane, the author of the article, that we referenced in our last post, talks about the 11.5 million employees who have quit their jobs over the past few months. His suggestion to retain your employees is to care.

We’d go a step further and say that you must demonstrate that you care about people as individuals and it’s equally important to demonstrate that you value their unique gifts and contributions.

Research has shown that:

  • People who believe their leaders care about them, show greater loyalty to the leaders, share differing opinions in ways that further innovation, and are less likely to leave.
  • People who believe their leaders value their contributions, are more aligned behind the vision, more likely to move initiatives forward, and are less likely to leave.

While the research separates these out, we’ve seen that it’s the combination of demonstrating caring for the individuals and valuing their contributions that’s most meaningful and leaves people with a sense of belonging.

To retain your great employees
and your great leaders,
it’s crucial that you
create a culture of belonging
where all feel cared for and valued.

The same is true in our families, friend groups, and community organizations – when people genuinely feel they belong, they are more engaged, committed, and innovative.

Leaders often understand conceptually, how to demonstrate that they value their employees’ contributions (although they may not always do it), but many of them aren’t quite sure how to demonstrate care. We’ve put together some simple ideas below, to get you thinking about how you can demonstrate both of these things.

To Demonstrate Care:

  • Ask about their weekend.
  • Remember some of their family milestones.
  • Be fully present in meetings and conversations.
  • Put away electronics.
  • Show up to meetings online and in-person with warmth and curiosity.

To Demonstrate Value:

  • Offer recognition for contributions to the team or the organization.
  • Let people know that their skills help create success.
  • Give people opportunities to bring the skills they love using, to their work.
  • Don’t forget to acknowledge things people do every day, day after day, that create a strong culture and ease of work.
  • Ask about professional goals and dreams.

Try one or two of these with your team, your colleagues, even your family members, and let us know how it goes!

How can we support you?

If you’d like support in creating a culture where people feel they belong, contact us today.