As an employee retention speaker and employee retention author, I recommend to my audiences and to my client companies that their supervisors and managers know their employees. It is an important part of the C.R.A.P. philosophy (Caring, Respect, Appreciation and Praise) that they know personal stuff about their employees. Many people just cringe when they read the last line, I know. This employee retention trainer is not talking about friending on Facebook and getting involved in their lives. I am talking about “knowing” about your people.
Knowing about your people helps you to understand what people are going through that impacts them. It helps to build empathy and having empathy for your people is part of caring. We are dealing with PEOPLE, not machines or robots. Unfortunately, we have become so paranoid about “getting close” to our people that we don’t know anything about our people. When that happens, they become namely, faceless, means of production. That is not how you develop a sense of caring for your people. There is a fine line, but we have gotten to the point where we know nothing about our people. That’s tragic. It’s also hurts our ability to have empathy and to care.
When I talk about knowing people, I am talking about knowing whose son wrestles, whose daughter plays softball, whose kid is in college…and maybe even knowing how they are doing. This is what’s important to your people and, in many cases, why they work. People work for their families, to remodel the kitchen, to buy a new care. This excites people and they generally like talking about these things. I say…talk to them about it when it comes up. It makes you real. Besides, if you are a leader, to me, that is one of the enjoyable things about leading people…getting to know them. Most leaders generally like people. Not all people but most of them.
Part of the C.R.A.P. philosophy (Caring, Respect, Appreciation and Praise) is caring and you can’t care unless you know your people. It takes them from being nameless, faceless drones to being people. It also takes you and the organization from being a nameless, faceless organizations. From an employee retention strategies perspective, that’s a good thing because people quit nameless, faceless organizations!