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Why Working Together is Success

“Coming together is a beginning; staying together is progress; working together is success.” – Henry Ford

According to a study by Towers Watson, firms with engaged employees enjoy a 27% higher operating margin than competitors with less-than engaged hires.  In another study by the Gallup organization, “work units in the top quartile in employee engagement outperform bottom-quartile units by … 22% in profitability.”

At Lesson.ly, we believe that unlocking the potential of your employees is a multi-faceted endeavor, but keeping employee connection at the center will help your organization achieve similar results to those above. For the onboarding and training facets of your strategy, consider implementing some of these tactics to turn from cold, stale, corporate blah, to white-hot, self-propelling relationships between your team members.

1. Peer to Peer Learning

Enabling your senior staff to educate your new employees improves the personal connections within your company and allows you to obtain incredibly valuable “tribal” knowledge documented without much work.

This was a very unexpected phenomenon that we’ve found after working with our clients who do not have traditional training backgrounds. We noticed that one of the most efficient ways they were creating content was by using experienced employees in their organizations to create the training material for more junior team members.

These companies held knowledge sharing days, where each person took an hour or two putting together training materials about the parts of the business they own. The result? More pride and ownership from the trainers’ perspective and more respect for the trainers from the trainees.

Win-win.

Enabling your senior staff to educate your new employees improves the personal connections within your company and allows you to obtain incredibly valuable “tribal” knowledge documented without much work.

Oh, and beyond our single data-point, CEB studied 1,579 employees and found that those engaged in peer learning outperform their peers by 8.4%.

2. About Me Introductions

Let’s talk about new hires. Creating a personal connection as fast as possible in the beginning of a new employee’s experience is crucial. In fact, 77% of the best-in-class organizations agree that onboarding begins before the new hire’s first day according to the Aberdeen Group.

A simple public-facing, personal-connection building goal you can assign to each new hire is to write their own introduction.

The introduction should include the standard stuff like work history, but it should also describe the employee’s personal life to the extent they’re willing. Ask for at least one passion and one interesting fact. Once complete, it’s up to the employee to distribute this to the whole company, department, or team (whatever you’re comfortable with).

This has proven to bring a couple benefits. The first is that when the new hire’s peers learn about their passions and facts, “me too’s” start to pop up along with friendships that would have taken much longer to form otherwise. Second, over time, you will have a great directory that new hires can review to learn about the people they work with.

Whether this idea strikes you as something to implement or not, I’d encourage you to integrate a unique experience that everyone in your organization encounters to provide a common connecting point.

3. Constructive Competition

With today’s modern training and onboarding technologies, there is no excuse to not track engagement with mandatory learning. Still, many employees regard being forced to learn something new with contempt, speeding through their requirements with little effort and no pride, even though they know someone will be evaluating their results.

[Tweet “Stand on the shoulders of the giants who have gone before you. – @mitchellcausey #leadership”]

Let’s join companies like Deloitte and change this attitude toward learning – even toward learning the things we don’t necessarily want to learn. Deloitte has implemented gamification elements to their onboarding practice specifically for executives. By making each participant’s data public and competitive, their time to certification was reduced by 50%.

This is so easy to implement and so easy to measure, it’s worth a try no matter how large your organization is.

To do so, simply measure the onboarding time for new hires for the next 30-90 days without doing any gamification. Next, for each new hire, provide a daily or weekly update on how everyone stacks up against each other. Track your time to production for this time, compare with the pre-gamified time and see for yourself. And please post the results in the comments if you do this. :)

Wrapping Up

Whether you choose to implement all, one, or none of these ideas we’ve seen work, be sure to stand on the shoulders of the giants who have gone before you – listen to Henry Ford and what the data above says – and begin progressing toward a more connected, human organization. As leaders, this is our responsibility.

 

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Copyright: alphaspirit / 123RF Stock Photo

Mitch Causey is the Director of Marketing at Lesson.ly, and believes in always producing effective results. He believes in capitalizing on every blessing in his life and making an impact on the world around him. He is an internet entrepreneur with an expertise in organic lead generation in both B2B & B2C markets.

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    There’s a more human way to do business.

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