When people on your team are quitting, not performing, or seeming disengaged, what should you do? Instead of sitting them down, reviewing their goal progress, and telling them to work harder, channel your inner gardener. That means, taking ownership of meeting your teams’ physical, emotional, and environmental needs and getting to the root cause of the underlying issues.
- Take the lead: Not everyone on your team will be able to articulate exactly what they need to feel creative, engaged, or challenged. Most of us aren’t consciously aware that we’re not getting a need met until someone else draws our attention to it. It’s best to set the example and approach these discussions with vulnerability.
- Probe and explore: Our actions are motivated by the fulfillment of certain needs which are usually a unique mix of our physical, emotional, and environmental, and largely depends on our individual preferences. Ask your team if they’re taking care of themselves. Do they have a mindfulness regimen? How are they feeling working with the team? How are they feeling about their office or workspace?
- Take action: Depending on what you’re hearing from your team, you might advocate to senior leadership for a new meditation or nap room at the office, gym membership stipends, making coaching available, or mental-health conversations. But remember, all of your noble investments in new programs and benefits to support people’s needs will be for naught if they have no time to take advantage of them. Set clear expectations around work and non-work hours, and seek out workflows in the business that cause unnecessary stress and urgency.