One of the most significant takeaways from our Employee Engagement Report was that almost 70% of employees don’t feel they’re living up to their potential. And if your employees think they’re not being fully utilized, they’re likely to move to another job sooner rather than later.
The biggest reason employees cited for not living up to their potential was that they’re still learning and growing. This means they can see themselves living up to their potential in the future. But how do you help them get there?
The first rule is the simplest: talk to your employees and find out what they really want. What are their hopes and dreams? Where do they see themselves in five or ten years? Consider using an employee survey tool to find out exactly what your employees are thinking about where they fit into your company’s present and future.
Then find ways to help them achieve their goals. If your employees believe that you’re supporting them, they’ll be more likely to give 100%.
2. Avoid assigning hectic, low-level work
The second-biggest reason employees cited is that they’re constantly having to put out fires. They’re frustrated that their talents are being used to correct other people’s mistakes or meet suddenly important deadlines.
With the right systems and people in place, you can avoid wasting your team’s talent. It’s one way to ensure your employees don’t get burnt out and start looking for work elsewhere.
3. Challenge your best employees
Talented employees tend to fly under the radar. They’re doing their jobs well, so your attention shifts to those employees who aren’t pulling their weight. They need your support and expertise more, right?
But your best employees need to be challenged. They need opportunities to advance within the company and strong collaborative partners. Make sure that you’re pushing your talented team members to become even better. Encourage them to take risks, start new projects, and pitch ideas.
4. Make strong hires
A consistent frustration employees expressed in our survey was lack of colleague follow-through. If your team isn’t working together, each member isn’t going to feel like they’re meeting their potential. Someone else dropping the ball won’t just hurt a single initiative or sale; it could damage long-term retention. And guess who’s more likely to leave your company — your most talented employees.
5. Provide more professional growth
Our study found that only 25% of employees believed they were receiving adequate professional development. This is an area that businesses need to invest in. It demonstrates that you want your employees to succeed now and in the future. Your talented employees especially are going to demand that they hear from the top professionals in their fields to ensure that they’re on the cutting edge.
By genuinely seeking employee feedback and finding ways to address their concerns, you’ll create a workplace in which all employees are living up to their potential.