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It’s no secret that motivated teams have a direct impact on how successful a business is. And sometimes the simplest things can make a huge difference to your teams motivation. Here’s one of the most important things you can do that many managers overlook.
There is one important (and easy) thing you as a business owner or manager can do to increase loyalty, motivation and team performance – and yet not enough leaders are doing it.
Show them the money
We’re not talking about pay rises or cash incentives – a few extra dollars slapped on top of fundamental staffing issues never solves the underlying problems.
Instead, we encourage all business owners to adopt the practice of sharing financial information with their staff. You don’t need to disclose the overall business financials – just specific project details.
There is a proven correlation between measurements and performance.
Want to run a faster 10k? Track your time and speed every time you hit the trails and see how changes to your training regime affect results. Want to lose 5 kilos? Record what you eat and track your calories. Want to grow your nest egg? Track your investments and plan your actions based on historical performance.
There’s something extremely motivating about watching the numbers when you’re working towards a goal.
The same principle applies to running a successful business – at all levels of the organisation. People are motivated by numbers and results. We love to see how our movements affect the metrics. Even if we don’t like crunching the numbers ourselves, we’re intrigued about how inputs change outputs.
Too often, however, we see business owners hiding away financial information from their staff. These are the most important numbers in any business and should be used to motivate staff.
One of the most common questions we get asked at ROLL is whether or not there is an option within the software to keep financial information hidden from users. This is always an interesting question. To us, that’s like asking your team to run faster, but not telling them their times.
ROLL was created first and foremost to help improve business performance. The best way to do that is to increase business visibility. We’ve seen how teams have lifted their game by being given more information, more transparency around project performance, and better forecasting tools.
But how much financial information should you share?
We’re not suggesting full disclosure around overall business performance and commercially sensitive information. We’re talking about project performance.
Excite your team members by telling them how they contribute to project success. Motivate them by showing them where in the pipeline improvements can be made. Empower them by giving them the opportunity to suggest changes.
Within ROLL there are three levels of user permissions with different access to financial information. In the middle is the “Employees” level where you can turn on or off access to project financial information.
We’ve seen that project financial transparency has a number of benefits:
- Business owners who share financial information related to projects tend to have a more engaged team and a more inclusive work environment. The “us versus them” mentality is replaced by feelings of “we’re all in this together” and any blame games are eliminated. Staff start to focus their energy toward common goals and aligned thinking.
- Sharing financial information makes employees feel trusted and empowered to act upon those performance measures. They work collectively and constructively to improve business processes because they want the team to succeed.
- When projects come under pressure, it’s easier to understand why certain actions need to be taken when the numbers are freely shared. Employees can see that decisions are made due to financial pressures rather than personal biases.
- Overall, employees take greater ownership of their work and deliver to budget when they can see the direct result of their project performance. When they’re involved in the tracking and measuring, they tend to want to do their best work.
There is always the risk of staff leaving with confidential information. In our opinion, the benefits far outweigh the risks here. The improvements in team culture, work performance and project profitability actually create greater team morale and company loyalty than in a business that is less inclusive about decision-making.
At ROLL we believe in transparency.
Like most key success factors, transparency relies on having both the right tools and the right mindset. Our software is designed to give managers greater visibility over their business so they can see and understand what is really happening in every area. Having this visibility makes it easier to manage resources, delegate tasks, streamline processes, run a more efficient business, and turn a bigger profit.
Quite often the difference between a good business and a great business is the team. Culture trickles down from the top and a great team needs a great playing field. It’s up to you as a business owner or manager to provide an environment that cultivates better teams and encourages successful outcomes.