Have you ever noticed that we’re conditioned to think of profitability and human capital as diametrically opposed? When we hear news of a company seeking to improve profits through restructuring, or through merger or acquisition, we almost expect that announcements of layoffs, “downsizing” and “rightsizing” will follow.
But take a step back and think about this: when human capital performs well, profitability shines. This means that the better prepared your workforce, the greater likelihood your organization has of being profitable.
The question is: what can a CEO, or any leader for that matter, do to improve employee performance, thus increasing the bottom line?
In a recent article in CEO Journal Magazine, I outlined strategies that can help CEOs communicate with employees toward just this end.
Leaders are wise to focus on how to create an environment in which workers can perform best. Six small words can be the answer. Ask yourself, “What do I need to do to enable my workforce to confidently and honestly say these six little words?” Equipping your team with the ability to affirm these statements can help you build a team focused on delivering top line results, exceeding customer expectations, and improving profitability:
If your associates learn and understand what they need to do, and how that feeds into the overall success of the organization, they are more likely to connect with business goals, and increase their engagement.
Leaders who create an environment in which workers are recognized for being competent, are encouraged to collaborate with their peers, and are given autonomy to get their work done, are more likely to have a workforce that truly cares about their performance and the well-being of their organization.
Workers must have the necessary skills in place in order to achieve and sustain optimum productivity. A CEO that assesses the resources that workers have access to, and ensures that those resources align with business objectives, is demonstrating commitment to create an environment geared for productivity.
It goes without saying that an organization cannot function without a highly skilled and engaged workforce. Instead of simply accepting the “common wisdom” that cutting the size of the workforce can build cost savings, it’s wise to consider the bigger picture. It is the capable salesforce that generates every dollar of revenue, and it’s dedicated professionals who fulfill every order. Only passionate and committed employees fuel their organizations with innovation and creativity.
Human capital is the “secret sauce” to success and it is the job of leaders to inspire their teams to live these six mantras in all that they do.
Sharon Daniels is CEO of AchieveGlobal in Tampa, Florida