According to a 2017 Gallup poll, 70% of employees are disengaged at work. As disengagement arises productivity falls and your bottom line will begin to slip. As a leader it is your job to create buy in from your team that will keep them engaged not just in their role but in you.
Buy in from your team means that they will stand behind you and as their leader and will fight to stay engaged. If your team is bought in they are far more likely to engage with any project you give them which will lead to the results you are looking for.
Here’s how to tell your team has not bought in:
Are they distracted at work?
Do they talk to each other and not to you?
Buy in matters, and if you have experienced one or more of the above scenarios, it’s time to take a look at why your team is not on board.
Start by looking inward.
When met with pushback, it’s easy for the first reaction to be defensiveness. When your team is hesitant towards you, your instinct will likely be to take it personally and believe it must be their fault. But the truth is, as a leader, the first step to gaining buy in is to look inward. Take a self-inventory of your leadership abilities and see if there is something you are doing that’s hindering your team’s buy in.
Presentation Tip: If you find yourself questioning your team’s support start by asking them how they feel. A easy way to gain real time feedback on how your leading the is to create a task force made of up several team members who have the freedom to speak openly how they feel and how the team feels about your leadership and communication. It is important when selecting these team members that you choose people that you work well with as well as team members who you may not always see eye to eye with.
Creating this task force may feel uncomfortable but it will help you to drill in to what might be hindering your team from buying in to your initiatives. Often, the symptom is only part of a bigger problem. If they don’t love your new deck, it may be time to look into your overall relationship with your team.
Explain the why.
Often, managers forget that the why is important. With the never-ending list of tasks and responsibilities, it’s easy to overlook the importance of looping your team into what is going on. If you notice a lack of buy in from your team, the solution may be as simple as explaining the why behind what is going on. Crafting your why is important. Whatever you do, don’t just say “Because I said so,” or you’ll never get your team on board.
Presentation Tip: Here are a couple ways to ensure your why leads to buy in.
Lead with the expected outcome.
Share the behind-the-scenes story.
Craft a clear reason.
We all know what it was like as a kid to hear “because I said so” from a parent who didn’t feel like explaining their decisions. That answer is not only frustrating, but it’s also downright discouraging; it communicates that the other person’s thoughts are not valid and their opinion doesn’t matter. You may feel as though you don’t need to run your decisions by your team since you’re the decision maker, but if you make them feel important and valued as part of the team, they’ll get on engage with you and your future decisions long term.
Allow your team space to give feedback.
As a manager, you feel the weight of any project you’ve been assigned. You know that, ultimately, you will be responsible for whatever the outcome. But not allowing room for your team to provide feedback is a sure-fire way to ensure your team will question your efforts and question the new deck. By not allowing them to speak to the new deck, you’re letting them know that you don’t care what they have to say.
When it comes to team feedback, you have to be intentional with how you collect it. For example, allowing an open forum for 30 of your top sales associates to give you their feedback is probably going to result in a frustrating scenario. However, using something as simple as an online questionnaire can allow you to identify overarching themes and get a pulse on how your team feels about the new deck. In return, simply giving your team the opportunity to share their thoughts allows them to feel heard and valued resulting in a win-win scenario all around.
Presentation Tip: Check out these platforms to create an easy-to-use feedback questionnaire:
Good old fashioned pen and paper survey
Buy in from your team is a key aspect of leading and communicating well. When your team feels appreciated, heard, and empowered they are far more likely to be on board with any decision you may bring to them. Which will ultimately drive their engagement and lead to greater productivity.
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