Activate Engagement. Activate Talent. 
Activate Leadership. Activate Results.


Activate Human Capital Group Blog

Think about this truism: employees join companies and leave managers. Have you ever joined a great company, excited about growth opportunities, benefits, and/or perks of the job only to find yourself looking for a new job because you and your manager couldn’t seem to find an effective working relationship?

Meaningful connections formed between manager and employee can be among the most rewarding relationships in our lives. Misalignment, mistrust, and misery ensue in the absence of these meaningful connections, leading employees to leave the managers they’ve been assigned and the companies they were so enthusiastic about joining.

In a tight labor market like the one we’re experiencing now, forming meaningful connections between managers and employees is the most effective strategy for staving off employee turnover. Some managers have the talent to form these bonds effortlessly. These individuals find managing others to be an enjoyable challenge as they help their employees learn and grow. If you’ve worked for one of these managers, I hope you know how blessed you’ve been! For the rest of us, managing employees feels like solving a Rubix cube – each employee offers different talents to develop, diverse and ever-changing needs to meet, and unique backgrounds and motivators to consider.  

If you’re a manager or supervisor who finds yourself in the second group described above, here are some tips to better connect with your team members:

  • Build a rapport. Make introductions, set expectations for working together effectively, actively listen, find common ground, be empathetic, and above all, be respectful. Building a solid rapport takes begins in the onboarding process but continues every day – it’s never too late to improve the basics of our working relationships. Be sure you’re spending some one-on-one time with each employee at least once a month. Remember that one of your most important jobs as a manager is to help your team members get where they want to go! 
  • Picture yourself as a coach. Thinking of yourself as a coach can change your mindset and approach, as well as the effectiveness of your team results. While the playing field may vary from one team to the next, the role of the coach is the same – help your players improve.  
  • Align talents to roles. In line with your efforts to coach your employees, one of your jobs as their coach is to act as a talent scout. Always be on the lookout for unique contributions to the team. Whenever possible, partner with your team members to help them define individual approaches to the same tasks – approaches which honor their natural talents rather than forcing them to follow the same prescribed steps.  There are few more meaningful workplace connections than those that spring from the appreciation an employee feels for a manager who coaches them into the right role or helps them to acknowledge their unique contributions in a meaningful way.

Growing and nurturing relationships with employees helps both organizations and individuals thrive.  While it can seem a daunting task, set out to develop meaningful relationships with your team members and don’t throw in the towel if at first you don’t succeed.  The outcome and connections are worth the work invested.

To learn more ways to connect and engage both your employees and clients, contact Activate Human Capital Group by phone at 530-713-6359 or through our contact page. Our experienced staff is here to help you create the work environment your employees crave while building relationships your managers will appreciate while growing your business. We specialize in activating engagement so your organization can thrive.