Businesses today collect data at every point of the customers’ journey through various sources like digital clicks, mobile app usage, social media interactions and more. These data, if analyzed properly, can provide useful insights to make the business processes more efficient and productive, regardless of the industry they belong to. Companies have realized that the best way to gain a competitive edge in the market today is by providing a great experience to the customers. Data analytics helps businesses make better use of customer data to generate higher customer satisfaction and long-term loyalty. And, with data more accessible than ever, business that fail to deliver exceptional and personalized experiences to customers need to catch up with the latest technology that many businesses are taking advantage of. More and more advance technologies are emerging for analyzing the huge volumes of both structured as well as unstructured data, using which businesses can make strategic moves and better decisions, driving positive results while ensuring protection of personal data. As organizations are increasingly attempting to unlock the power of big data, the data scientists are gradually becoming the modern day superheroes. Let’s have a look at how data analytics is benefiting the businesses.
Different managers use different techniques and strategies, depending on the workforce composition and organizational culture, when it comes to managing the employees and their work. However, in an attempt to drive the team towards the desired result, many managers make the blunder of embracing micromanagement. Micromanagement is closely observing or controlling the work of subordinates, and is one of the most detrimental habits that can cripple the organization from the inside. When a manager or the boss constantly lurks over your shoulder or holds up a microscope to every single thing that you do, you lose the drive, morale and creativity. It creates stress, distrust, and over-dependence, making the employees feel that they aren’t good enough to work on their own. Micromanaging is the management’s way of ensuring that every task is performed exactly the way the authorities want it but the employees eventually lose confidence and motivation to take initiatives. Micromanagement usually begins when a manager is unable to trust the employees and that’s when they believe that it’s the only way the organization can succeed. However, in the process they ignore the negative impacts that can lead to some irreversible damages.
As a manager, you need to deal with a myriad challenges and one of the most difficult among them could be managing and fixing an underperforming team. Underperformance has many aspects like not achieving targets, low productivity, poor standard of work and the list goes on and it adversely impacts the organization in multiple ways. In fact, one underperforming team can damage the business as well as the morale and efficiency of other teams too. Inheriting an underperforming team could be a nightmare for leaders but if you succeed in turning it around you would certainly add a star skill to your resume. And for this, you need to analyze the problem first and then design an approach to turn those under-performers into star performers of the organization. Here are some strategies that could help you do that:
Motivating employees to perform at their best isn’t easy. It’s a delicate and continuous process that requires a lot more than just an annual performance review or going through employee files. Employees often lose motivation due to several reasons like burnout, poor communication, silos, etc and such employees can severely impact the health of your business. A survey conducted by Gallop revealed that unhappy employees could cost the U.S. economy up to $550 billion each year in lost productivity. On the other hand when everyone on your team is well-motivated and inspired, their combined skill-set and energy can help your company achieve any goal. No matter how many super talented employees you have on your team, if they are not motivated enough you will never get the results you want. Leadership includes a lot of responsibilities and providing the right motivation to the employees is a very important one that often gets overlooked. Motivation is directly linked to team success and thus it’s important to find out thoughtful ways of motivating employees.
Accountability is one of the most important traits of high performing teams. It has a direct impact on productivity and engagement and, consequently, results. It is also linked to increased commitment to work and employee morale. Accountability is about taking responsibility for an outcome and not just the task. It’s about following through and delivering what you committed. Accountability is important at every level of the organization and when every member of the team demonstrates accountability, it leads to strong and cohesive teams, where people trust each other and work together to reach a common goal. However, many organizations lack this significant trait among their teams and fostering accountability isn’t always an easy thing to do. Often, when employees aren’t accountable, the managers hesitate to call them out to avoid harming the work relationships or, worse, demoralizing them. Also, many managers micromanage or spill out their frustrations in the name of holding people accountable which, in turn, negatively impacts employee performance and motivation. Today, we all work in a collaborative work environment where we have to depend on others to complete tasks, and if people aren’t accountable, the efforts of the entire team get wasted. Holding people accountable is essential for team management and thankfully, there are some simple yet effective ways a manager can do this.
A team is much more than just a group of people and hence there is a significant difference between group thinking and team thinking. The times have changed and so have the approaches to business solutions. Team building has gained a lot of emphases lately and managers are putting significant efforts to harness the potential of individuals and channelize them towards achieving a common objective. One of the major responsibilities of managers or team leaders today, while building a high-performing team, is to inculcate and encourage team-thinking to facilitate better decisions and results. Team thinking is essentially collaborative thinking, focussed on a common goal, where every member of the team is willing to listen carefully and consider views and options for making the best decision for clients, organization, and individuals.
People are increasingly looking for personalized user experiences in every field, where they can mold things and situations as per their personal preferences, interests, and needs. The same goes for employees as well who are bringing their unique needs to the table and are expecting personalized experiences at work. Human resources functions evolve continuously with changing trends and regulations and now they can no more rely on a “one-size-fits-all” approach for talent management. Organizations are now focussing more on providing tailored work experiences to their employees. And, with the growing demand for personalization in the workplace, experts also believe that this particular trend can be instrumental in bringing together the skillsets of a diverse workforce and has the potential to improve engagement, retention and workplace interactions.
To succeed in today’s marketplace that is uncertain, ambiguous, complex and volatile, companies need to be Agile. An Agile organization has the ability to cope with continuous changes and take advantage of the opportunities that come along. However, this requires some fundamental changes in the thought process and work culture. Agile companies meet the changing market demands by quickly developing products and services with high efficiency, keeping the quality intact. Agility is closely coupled with digital transformation and empowers businesses to stay ahead of the competition. Agile companies have a business model that generates value for both the customers as well as the organization. Let’s have a look at the characteristics of an Agile organization:
Managing employees in a unionized environment has its own set of challenges. Unions and employers are often on the opposite sides of the table representing different interests which results in a tense relationship between the two. However, by using the right techniques and strategies, the management can ease this working relationship, helping both the parties benefit from the interaction. The key to success in this special framework is knowing the rules and principles that govern the unionized workforce. A good management-union relationship means both the management and the union employees are aiming to improve the performance and sustainability of the organization which, in turn, benefits both employees and employers.
The World Economic Forum (WEF), in a recent report, has revealed that by the year 2022 about 75 million human jobs might be replaced by robots. However, the automation of services will also create 133 million new positions. This suggests that workplaces are undergoing a colossal transformation. Organizations are working towards integrating new technologies into the business environment, and lately many initiatives are being taken to adopt the Virtual Assistant (VA) functionality for enhancing employee experience, efficiency, and productivity. Nevertheless, like any other technology, VA is also subject to speculations and is triggering concerns regarding the job security of people. But data and many experts have revealed that the technology is making workplaces better, eliminating human limitations.