It’s that time of the year again..
You got it! Christmas…
But not only Christmas….
By the end of December of each year, we see people rushing to fill in 360 feedback’s about peers and managers, being overloaded with tasks to be finalized prior end of year, and prayers for a “motivational” raise & bonus.
After collecting the information, it’s that time of the year (again) where the manager delivers the news to the employee about their performance and what is it for them in return in terms of “money”. Right? Since December is all about giving, loving, cherishing, and helping.
It’s really nice of you to think about your employees in such a great manner, giving them in return, only within 8% time of the year. (Shocked by the number? 8% represents the December month of all the year so, 1/12 = 8.3%)
Some of you have this look on their faces now…
No? Not Yet?
Great then.. let’s continue….
A manager, not a while ago, approached me and said “it’s not about the money.. We also create a great experience for them in December. Activities, perks, early leaves on Fridays, asking them to give back to the community, and we even have secret Santa!!”
I stood there.. My eyes filled with tears… having on my Christmas spirit glowing inside of me… for having managers who think this way…. It made me really feel emotional…
I couldn’t believe what i was hearing.. I felt standing with the one and only…
Wooha… “The Grinch you say?”
Yes, exactly. For me, the manager was a live example of The Grinch in companies we are having.
Let’s put everything back in perspective…
Love me in the month of December OR Fire me in the month of December…
This is how it happens, “Carrots & Sticks” approach…
(+) You did good this year.. here is your x$ of raise &/or bonus.
(+) You did great this year.. here is your xx$ of raise &/or bonus.
On the other hand…
(+/-) You did average this year… We expect next year for you to be better (With a tap on the back for motivational encouragement)
(-) You did worse this year… This is not acceptable, i guess we need to figure out a solution to give it to you gently on how you will be leaving us (but not within the holidays.. you know, the Christmas spirit).
Sounds familiar? (I really hope not!)
I’m not going to take too long of your time, so ill try to be brief and subtle, since you know.. it’s December..
So, what is the best Christmas gift to give back to your employees (other than the “ones” stated above) for the month of December?
It’s not that easy, but i`ll walk you through it….
Employees when paid well (as in something that they can live with) –If this is not applicable on your end, i guess you might need to figure out how to fix this as a start–, are not interested in money and raises. Have an idea (actually 4) of what you need to do and you will reach the best Christmas present of all…
- Discover their wants & needs: Take the time to learn about your employees. They are people as much as you are. They have wants and needs. Discover their preferences and this can help you customize your “thank you” .. on a more personalized level.
- Help them create a professional path: Employees love to grow. Grow out of a job that is becoming boring and non-challenging. Help them set their goals and career orientations, and have them aligned with the company’s direction. We either all grow together or fall together.
- Feedback: Don’t wait till December to give out the news (not even each 6 month). Instant feedback should be well deserved whether it was on a positive or a negative note. You want your employees to improve? Don’t wait till you reach the last 8% of the year to deliver to them the news they earned, for them to find out more about their performance within the 92% of the whole year.
- Empathy: Take their place. Find what they are going through. Feel their daily struggles. Live their monthly challenges. This will give you a better idea of what your employees are going through. Create the trust you need (and have to earn) by making it clear that you see through them in “sickness & in health till a resignation do both of you apart“.
Eventually, by the end of the year, in December, the most prestigious gift you would have offered to your employee is not a day off, nor a raise or a well deserved bonus, not a spa or a shopping voucher but the success of conquering their challenges and helping them boost their future towards newer heights.
Investing in your employees’ mental well-being, and being there for them down the road is a 12 month gift. That’s a 100% on a year-long, for the ones who help you make your team, department, and company a successful journey.
On that note,