Some of the biggest companies in the world have achieved global dominance by creating a space in which their employees can thrive. Virgin and Google, for instance, are two prime examples of immensely successful businesses that both have a heavy focus on engagement with the workforce. Rather than having employees simply work for you, it would be more lucrative to give them a platform to share ideas and help push the business forward in the right direction. This, in turn, would increase employee satisfaction and staff retention rates.
According to Qmarkets, an idea management company that focuses on fostering innovation, allowing employees to contribute concepts for new products, services, or process improvements is a key strategy in developing a business. Some of the ideas put forward by Qmarkets include installing an employee suggestion box and embedding idea management into a digital employee ecosystem. Qmarkets has helped major companies like Ford and Liberty Mutual in recent years, thus suggesting that the company knows what it’s talking about when it says to focus on employee engagement.
Richard Branson famously climbed his way to the top by putting a heavy emphasis on keeping his employees happy and giving them room to grow within the company. The 69-year-old entrepreneur famously said that “your company should act as a springboard for ambitious employees, not a set of shackles”. Branson values staff as the most important component to the success of a business, and the model of the company’s rise to the top can be followed by other budding business people.
The concept of increasing employee engagement and allowing them to have their say in the running of the business is called intrapreneurship, and it involves giving members of staff time and space to come up with their own ideas. If you have talented individuals in your employment it is unwise to stifle them. If they don’t have the room to grow and follow their own initiative, they could take their expertise somewhere else. This would certainly be your business’s loss and another company’s gain. However, if you keep them and allow them some freedom, they could climb the ladder within your business and become valuable assets.
Returning to Google, the technology giant has a stipulation in place which says that employees must spend 20 percent of their time doing something which is outside of their usual job description. This helps to encourage a creative culture which gives employees a chance to shine and express themselves.
— 98FM (@98FM) October 14, 2019
To create an atmosphere in which your employees can maximise their potential, there is a lot to learn from the biggest companies in the world. Listening to employees’ ideas, giving them a sense of purpose, and providing them with the time and space to pursue other things can help them become so much more than just members of staff. They can help you grow your business exponentially and may think of things that had never crossed your mind.