Clarity and Responsibility are Essential for a Healthy Workplace

clarityClarity and Responsibility are Essential for a Healthy Workplace
Responsibility is a scary concept both inside and out of the workplace. It’s much easier to place the blame on someone else rather than yourself, but that’s rarely the correct or most effective mentality. You must communicate clearly and take personal responsibility for the results when dealing with employees, contractors or customers.

Whether you are a parent, sports team coach or a member of company management, there will be situations when you don’t get the results you want from your family or team members. It’s natural to feel frustrated or even upset when this happens, but don’t let negative feelings detract from your ability to rationally examine your own mistakes that led to this outcome.

The Power of Clear Communications
As the person making the request, it is the manager’s responsibility to clearly outline their expectations as well as preferred method for reaching the goal. Your employees don’t possess telepathic powers, so you can’t expect them to deliver results unless you tell them exactly what you want. If you expect something specific, then you must give your workers clear and detailed instructions.

Like any other interaction between people, business communications are a two-way street. Employees should ask questions when they don’t completely understand the expectations, or if they aren’t sure how to proceed with a project. Rather than silently resenting the request, they should feel comfortable talking to management about requests that seem unfair or impossible.

Do You Feel Intimidated When Talking To Employees? You Are Not Alone!
The ability to communicate with confidence may seem like a natural gift that some lucky individuals just have. However, many business leaders actually struggle with the prospect of confrontation and would rather avoid difficult conversations. In a recent Harris Poll that surveyed 616 managers, 69 percent reported feeling uncomfortable when communicating with employees in general.

Of course, there are many specific types of communication that business leaders find unsettling as well. According to the survey, giving criticism or honest feedback about a worker’s performance makes 1 in 3 managers uneasy. Additionally, 20 percent of those surveyed reported feeling uncomfortable when discussing their own shortcomings, recognizing achievements of employees and explaining company policy or goals.

While it is clear that many people view communication in the workplace as a daunting challenge, it is a hurdle that every business leader must overcome. Fortunately, there are a few simple guidelines that can make the process much less intimidating:

  1. Speak honestly and directly: Don’t beat around the bush, especially when giving critical feedback. Employees appreciate honesty and plain language. Think about what you are going to say before you begin the conversation, so you can deliver the message as clearly as possible.
  2. Be empathetic, but not pandering: Before communicating with an employee, stop and evaluate your emotional state. If you are agitated, angry or frustrated, it may be better to wait before having the talk. Think about how your words will make the employee feel, and let them know that you understand their feelings.
  3. Let them talk: Communication is a two-way street, so make sure you give the other person a chance to respond and explain themselves. Even if you want to run out of the room as soon as possible after delivering criticism or bad news, you must resist this temptation. Give everyone a chance to speak their minds, so all parties can walk away with a sense of closure.
  4. Lead by example: Before delivering a message to your employees, ask yourself if your actions and performance holds up to it. Giving feedback or enforcing company policy without accepting the same responsibility upon yourself is a surefire way to generate resentment and insubordination in the workplace. Give your employees a chance to give you feedback as well and take the opportunity to improve yourself.

Who is Responsible, Manager or Employee?
Taking responsibility for all of your business interactions may seem like a heavy load, but it ultimately gives you more control over the future of your company. As a manager, you must take charge of the circumstances rather than fall victim to them. It’s your job to make sure that your team knows what to do and how to do it.

Of course, employees also share responsibility for their performance in the workplace. Managers should not need to repeat the same instructions or remind workers of the rules every single day. As a professional, you should respect the office decorum as well as the authority of management. If your team has a meeting every Monday morning, it is your responsibility to be on time and ready to go every week.

Posted in Blog

Take the Lead: How to Create Positive Change for the Future

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Take the Lead: How to Create Positive Change for the Future

Leaders are not just passengers on the bus, they are the drivers who create a roadmap to their destination. They have a clear vision of the route and execute each step with confidence. They are individuals who plan for the future, reach out to others around them and look for ways to make things better for everyone involved.

Many people strive to become leaders, but only a few manage to make this goal a reality. Becoming a leader isn’t just a matter of luck or natural ability, it’s the result of a productive mentality that pervades every aspect of your life. The ability to create positive change in your environment is a trait that can be developed by shifting your attitude and approach to challenges you face on a daily basis.

So, what are the big differences between leaders and everyone else?

The Essential Qualities of Leadership

For a leader to be a leader they choose someone who will hold them accountable. A mentor of some sort.

Leaders also surround themselves with other Leaders who are like minded to get that motivation to push even further obstacles or think BIG.

  1. Visualize Boldly

Leaders aren’t afraid to think about big goals, which some people may dismiss as impossible or incredibly unlikely. Rather than just thinking outside the box, they stand on top of it and look even further to the possibilities beyond. Leaders don’t back down from difficulties. Instead, they challenge themselves to push the boundaries that no one else dares to. They step outside of their comfort zone and are not anxious over the outcome.

2. Inspire Self and Others

Every person has moments of weakness, when doubt and fear overwhelms their confidence. Leaders know that they will sometimes lose focus or motivation, which is why they seek out an experienced mentor or adviser who will hold them accountable. They also surround themselves with friends who share their desire to grow and succeed in life.  A social circle of like-minded people who can provide support, encouragement and advice is an indispensable asset for anyone.

3. Create Practical Strategies to Get It Done

Dreaming about the possibilities is an important first step, but a good leader must also follow through on their vision. This requires an actionable plan that lays out a step-by-step framework for turning fantasy into reality. It’s important to keep your feet on the ground even while looking at the sky, and take measured steps to make sure you reach the finish line.

4. Balance Rational Thinking and Feeling

One of the most important aspects of a leader is the ability to use both rational thinking and personal passion to motivate progress. Focusing on results and productivity is great, but it should should also be kept in check by basic emotional needs. Maintaining a healthy balance between work and life for yourself and your team is essential for long-term success. Leaders also stay in touch with the needs of people around them and help them find satisfaction as well.

5. Improve and Grow With Every Step

Some problems may seem insurmountable until you look at them from a fresh perspective. Leaders are flexible thinkers who are willing to adapt and innovate to overcome challenges. This requires lots of self-evaluation, as well as accurate information to discover ways to improve the processes in question. There is always a potential for growth and improvement, and leaders know how to temper this vision with realistic expectations for the future.

6. Focus on Human Resources and Community

In any business or cause, people are always the most important asset. Great leaders spend a lot of time helping others develop their skills, so they can continue to grow and expand their own horizons. This mentality is not restricted to friends, family and team members. It also applies to the local community and society in general. Leaders engage in volunteer efforts and other charitable causes to create positive changes in the world around them.

 

Posted in Blog, Business improvements, Clients, Employment, General, IT managed services Langley, IT managed services lower mainland, IT managed services North Vancouver, IT managed services Richmond, IT managed services Surrey, Linkedin, Matrix Services, Media Release, News Tagged with: , , ,

Giving Back to Communities

Take the Time to Reconnect with your Community12193511_10153032849800059_1892832972740310698_n

Many people working in specialized or high-tech fields feel disconnected from the world around them. With the bulk of each week spent in the office or interacting with others within a particular industry, it’s easy to forget how your efforts provide real value and service to the society as a whole.

At Matrix Connectivity, we believe that volunteering is invaluable opportunity for managers and employees to work together towards a common goal outside of the standard office setting. There have been many opportunities for us to get involved with local causes over the last few years, and we try to participate whenever we can.

Several of our team members recently served at the Orange County food bank with another group from Varnex SMB Community. We enjoyed the afternoon working alongside fellow volunteers, including new and familiar faces, to provide food for those in need. Taking part in a community project expands our team’s impact outside of its core industry and supports the community at the same time.

Successful Businesses Focus on Service

12193648_10153032849885059_7865831370805815487_nNo organization stands alone. Whether you run a small restaurant or a large accounting firm, bringing opportunity and prosperity to others in the community creates a firm foundation for your business. Successful companies strive to provide real value for their customers with their products and services.

As a manager or owner of a business, you can also serve the community by involving your organization directly in active projects. Encourage employees to take part in the effort as a wholesome team-building exercise as well as an opportunity to enjoy a change of pace from the routine of the work week.

Finding Local Volunteering Opportunities

Cities, towns and neighbourhoods throughout Canada always need people who will sacrifice some of their time to aid a good cause. Food banks are just one of many options available. You can run in sponsored races to generate donations and stay fit at the same time, or offer your professional expertise with discounted or free services for non-profits.

We encourage you to talk to other companies in your community and check the internet to find activities. If you are still stumped for ideas, you can also check out the Matrix company blog and Facebook page to see some of the volunteer work we’ve done in the past.12190821_10153032849950059_1753572572024734951_n

Posted in General

Clarity and Responsibility are Essential for a Healthy Workplace

canstockphoto Clarity3714652Responsibility is a scary concept both inside and out of the workplace. It’s much easier to place the blame on someone else rather than yourself, but that’s rarely the correct or most effective mentality. You must communicate clearly and take personal responsibility for the results when dealing with employees, contractors or customers.

Whether you are a parent, sports team coach or a member of company management, there will be situations when you don’t get the results you want from your family or team members. It’s natural to feel frustrated or even upset when this happens, but don’t let negative feelings detract from your ability to rationally examine your own mistakes that led to this outcome.

The Power of Clear Communications

As the person making the request, it is the manager’s responsibility to clearly outline their expectations as well as preferred method for reaching the goal. Your employees don’t possess telepathic powers, so you can’t expect them to deliver results unless you tell them exactly what you want. If you expect something specific, then you must give your workers clear and detailed instructions.

Like any other interaction between people, business communications are a two-way street. Employees should ask questions when they don’t completely understand the expectations, or if they aren’t sure how to proceed with a project. Rather than silently resenting the request, they should feel comfortable talking to management about requests that seem unfair or impossible.

Who is Responsible, Manager or Employee?

Taking responsibility for all of your business interactions may seem like a heavy load, but it ultimately gives you more control over the future of your company. As a manager, you must take charge of the circumstances rather than fall victim to them. It’s your job to make sure that your team knows what to do and how to do it.

Of course, employees also share responsibility for their performance in the workplace. Managers should not need to repeat the same instructions or remind workers of the rules every single day. As a professional, you should respect the office decorum as well as the authority of management. If your team has a meeting every Monday morning, it is your responsibility to be on time and ready to go every week.

For a video on the topic see:  Video Here

 

 

Posted in Accessories, Advice column, Blog, Business improvements, Clients, Consulting, General, Solutions, Twitter, Video, Workplace Tips

How to Motivate Employees to Increase Performance and Loyalty

canstockphoto8296609Successful businesses have one thing in common – they know how to keep their employees motivated. In order to get workers to have a genuine interest in the prosperity of your company, your company must show real interest in them.

There are many ways to get your staff fired up and focused on driving the business forward. Some of them may be more feasible than others, depending on your situation. These basic strategies can be customized to fit your workplace and the employees that fill it.

  1. Compensate based on performance

Incentive-based compensation is not a new concept. Servers, bartenders and salespeople are just a few of the positions that see a direct correlation between their efforts and income. Creating a financial link between an employee’s performance and compensation is a powerful way to align their interests with those of the organization.

Incentives don’t necessarily have to come in the form of commission. You can also offer bonuses for reaching certain goals or for putting forth an exceptional amount of effort. High-performing workers should also be rewarded with regular pay increases according to their results. Whatever policy you choose, make sure that the requirements and expectations are clear to the entire team.

  1. Encourage employees to aim higher

As painful as it may be to think about, not all of your employees intend to stay in their current positions for life. Many of them want to advance their careers, perhaps with other companies if necessary, or will strike out on their own and found a startup.

Always provide your employees with the chance to expand their horizons. You can do this by delegating authority over new projects to staff members and help them find opportunities to enhance their professional skills. You can also consider sharing ownership of the company with core employees through incremental stock transfer as part of their compensation.

  1. Get to know your staff personally

Don’t just talk about the weather or the latest football game. It’s important to engage in real, deep conversations with every member of your time. Listen to their concerns and aspirations so you can really get to know them as people. Studies show that workers are far less likely to “defect” to another company if they enjoy personal connections with their co-workers and management.

  1. Always be respectful and fair

As a business owner and manager, it is your responsibility to lead by example and make fair decisions. Favoritism is bad for your employees’ morale and your overall company culture. Treat every worker with the respect that you expect them to show you and don’t make exceptions for yourself or anyone else when it comes to workplace polices.

Posted in General

6 Simple Tips for Promoting Healthy Company Culture

Healthy CultureCulture may seem like an intangible concept with no direct consequence on your company, but nothing could be further from the truth. The future of your business is shaped by the culture you create, and long-term success hinges on your ability to use this powerful force effectively. Cultivating a positive and productive mindset in your workplace takes planning, dedication and patience.

  1. Be Friendly towards New Hires

It’s easy to just leave the new guy alone, but it’s not the best way to deal with fresh employees. Take time to talk with recent additions to the workplace. Be friendly and make a point to include them in conversations without pressuring them to socialize. You want them to feel welcome without feeling uncomfortable.

  1. Take Health and Safety Concerns Seriously

Listen carefully when employees come to you with a complaint or concern regarding personal health and safety. If a worker is worried about their well-being, then you should be as well. Ask them how they think the situation could be improved and what changes would make them feel safer while they are on the job.

  1. Lead by Example

As an owner or manager, you certainly have more authority in the office than the people working under you. However, you should never show special treatment to yourself or anyone else, regardless of position. Everyone in the office should follow company rules and policies. Don’t make an exception for one person unless you are willing to make one for everyone.

  1. Encourage Group Activities

Company lunches are a treat that most employees enjoy, but you shouldn’t stop there. You can take a group trip to a prominent industry convention or schedule a team hike through a local park. Encourage participation without making it mandatory. Plan activities that employees will want to attend, rather than being forced to.

  1. Give Feedback Regularly

Don’t let any success or failure go unnoticed. Pay attention to the performance of every employee and give them clear, insightful feedback. Use their weaknesses as opportunities to learn and expand their professional skills, and be sure to acknowledge how their accomplishments help the entire team.

  1. Reward Effort and Innovation

Employee incentives are a powerful motivator for those who like to go above and beyond. Give your workers room to advance their careers and earn a higher salary as they contribute more to the company. You can take accomplished employees out to a celebratory dinner or give them a gift to recognize a particular accomplishment.

Posted in General