Back to Listing

A Little Goes a Long Way

03 May 2016

Early Career Advice

If you are a leader, a manager or simply work within a team, it’s your duty to do a few things which will make everyone’s work life more pleasant and harmonious, including your own.

Understand the currencies in which people like to be paid.  Obviously money is the most common currency because it’s the one we associate most with transactions in the commercial world. We generally receive money in exchange for time, skills, solutions, idea, etc. There are many other currencies that people also accept. For example, many parents would like to also be compensated in time and flexibility so they can be with their children more often. So rather than accepting a raise, they would rather have Fridays off for family time. Similarly, some people enjoy great satisfaction from recognition and status, so a new and improved job title would be a more valuable currency than an increase in salary. Understanding what currencies people enjoy aside from money can go a long way.                                  

On the topic of recognition, notice whether your people prefer public or private acknowledgement. Being congratulated in front of the whole department for a recent win might be hugely satisfying for one person, but completely humiliating and more of a punishment than a reward for another person. Always pitch to your receiver.

Know what really matters to your people. Is one person very family oriented whilst another loves fast cars? Does one person enjoy live sport whereas another person enjoys cooking and movies. Noticing what people do outside of work and taking an interest makes people feel heard and valued. Enquire about people’s weekends and observe how they enjoy spending their personal time. When it comes time to recognise and acknowledge people in your team, you will then be able to make your reward very relevant to that individual. It doesn’t need to be expensive, but the fact that you’ve taken the time, thought and care to provide a relevant reward (such as a cooking class for the budding at-home-chef) is of massive value to that particular person. Of course, this builds strength in your team. A little goes a long way when you take the time to care. 

Encourage your team to take regular breaks to renew their energy. They will enjoy work even more plus be significantly more productive. We traditionally work through the day, start to finish, without much more than a few toilet breaks and grabbing lunch which then gets eaten at your desk. It’s been scientifically proven that designing your day in 90-minute work sprints with short renewal breaks in between, plus a good lunch break away from your desk, increases average productivity from 65% to 80%! That’s the equivalent of 1.2 hours. Truly, just redesigning your day can mean you could leave work an hour earlier having achieved the same output! And you’ll have more energy at the end of each day for the things that really matter to you.

I hope you enjoy implementing these simple yet effective tips with your team and your colleagues. I can assure you that you’ll see quick results and you will also feel great in the process. If you’d like more information on any of the above concepts, please don’t hesitate to reach out by phone and/or email. I’d love to share more ideas with you!
Enjoy spending the next weekend doing the things that really matter to you!