The daily business sections of the newspaper and the monthly business magazines are abuzz with strategies for hanging on to employees. Share the profits. Flex your hours. Woo them with perks. Thank them for coming to work.
One strategy for hanging onto something you value is to let it go. It works with loving relationships. Why not give it a whirl in the workplace? Instead of trying to hang on tightly to everyone you’ve got, why not lighten up and let your people go?
- Let people go try something new. Adventure, challenge, change and learning are motivators for many. Who knows what new skills or perspectives they may bring to the workplace and how they may be able to apply them? Thinking employees will always be stronger contributors than those who simply go with the same old flow day after day.
- Let people go about bringing more of themselves to work. Building personal interests into the workplace is a way for people to feel more integrated about the state of their lives. Outside interests are great sources of passion, energy and innovation that can energize everyday work routines. What’s to say the work wouldn’t go just a little smoother with a few notes of jazz playing in the background?
- Let people go take a leave of absence or a mini sabbatical. Sometimes it’s just space and distance that are needed to clarify the value of the everyday workday experience. People build important relationships in their workplaces. They make valued contributions. Sometimes in the daily overload, they just don’t realize that’s true. Absence can make the heart grow fonder.
- Let people go outside the everyday boundaries of job descriptions and policies. How are you going to discover a ‘better way’ to do something if you are bound to the status quo? Invite challenges and experiments. See where they take you and learn from the attempts.
- Let people go dabble in new markets and play with fledgling ideas for products and services. The honey bees have it right. Cross pollination in the garden turns blossoms into fruit. Take an idea from here and apply it over there. Who know what spectacular innovations may spring to life?
Give up control in favour of cooperation and collaboration. You’ll be surprised what grows and develops in an atmosphere of freedom and flexibility. Let your people go!
© Patricia Katz MCE CHRP of Optimus Consulting is a speaker, author and consultant who helps individuals and organizations restore the rhythm of renewal to work and life. To bring Patricia’s expertise to your organization, contact her at www.patkatz.com or toll free at (877) 728-5289