How to help employees understand their impact on the bottom line

by HRD21 Dec 2016
According to the latest research conducted by HR consulting firm Robert Half, only 47% of workers fully understand the value of their contributions to the company’s earnings.

“If you’re a people manager, you might look around at the bustling activity of your team and the looks of intense determination on their faces and assume that everyone understands how their work contributes to the company’s bottom line,” said career coach Lisa Quast at Forbes.

“But you’d be wrong.”

She said that while that 47% might not seem like a bad number, when flipped, it shows that more than half of employees (53%) remain ignorant about their contributions and that disconnect could impact employee engagement, job satisfaction, and productivity negatively.

She quoted Tim Hird, executive director of Robert Half Management Services as saying that “employees who see the direct correlation between their contributions and company performance are more engaged, make better spending decisions, and can identify new ways to increase productivity and growth”.

In her article, Quast gives four ways employers can help staff visualise that correlation:

1)    ‘Share the vision’ – More than just have the company’s vision written down, it is important for employers to constantly communicate that vision with the employees;
2)    Be all-inclusive – Don’t just relate company performance and goals with upper management, she said. Rather include all staff levels in the discussion;
3)    Keep the discussion ongoing – If you’re going to give your employees a performance review anyway, take the opportunity to discuss their contributions to the company bottom line as well; and 
4)    Let them find the connection – Before teams embark on a new project, Quast suggested to have them define the business case by describing “the benefits, costs, and financial impact of a project [in order to] help them better connect their actions to the organisation’s bottom line”. 

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