Developing managers to manage sustainable employee engagement, health and wellbeing

Written by Michelle Mook on . Posted in Sunflower Diaries

DevelopinG PIC In February 2017, CIPD in partnership with IOSH, published a report ‘Developing managers to manage sustainable employee engagement, health and wellbeing’.

It summarised that both academics and practitioner’s literature are clear on two points:

1. Employee engagement, health and well-being are key for the productivity, performance and success of organisations.

2. The way that employees are managed does have a significant impact on their engagement, health and wellbeing.

Managers therefore play a key role and need the competencies and behaviours to be able to engage and protect the health and well-being of their team.

The competencies and behaviours identified:

Lewis et al (2012) combined existing competency frameworks to develop a manager behaviour framework that identifies how managers can manage engagement, health and wellbeing.

1. Open, fair and consistent

We like to know where we are with people, what to expect. I’m sure we’ve all heard people say “what type of mood is he/she in today?” Or one day you feel like you can do no wrong, then the next you feel like you can do no right! It’s frustrating and damages relationships, trust and honesty.

Being open, fair and consistent means – Managers need to manage with integrity and consistency. Manage emotions and personal issues and take a positive approach in interpersonal conflict.

2. Handling conflicts and problems

We often hear about managers who are not dealing with issues and see first-hand the fall out this creates in the team. It’s not a great place to be! Managers can make excuses for not dealing with people for example “Oh that’s just the way he/she is, they’ve always been like that. Just ignore them.” Sound familiar?

Handling conflicts and problems means – Managers deal with employee conflict (including bullying and abuse) and use appropriate organisational resources.

3. Knowledge, clarity and guidance

Have you ever been in a position where you have not been 100 % sure of what you’re doing or why you’re doing it? Your objectives have been a bit flaky or decisions made seem uninformed. In such cases, managers can lose the respect of their team members and team members can lose confidence in their own ability as self-doubt kicks in, “I should know what to do, but I’m not clear and don’t feel like I can ask again…it’s me, I just don’t get it”

Knowledge, clarity and guidance means – clear communication, advice and guidance, demonstrates understanding of role and responsible decision making.

4. Building and sustaining relationships

“I can’t remember the last time my manager asked me how I was”. It’s scary how many times we hear this. All it takes is a simple conversation to build a connection with someone, but so often managers say to us “I wouldn’t know what to say” or “why would they want to talk to me?”

Building and sustaining relationships means – personal interaction with employees involving empathy and consideration.

5. Supporting development

Career progression is such a contentious issue in many SMEs we talk to. The common issues tend to be that employees cannot see a career path and employers don’t talk about progression or ask people about their aspirations. Employees then jump to a conclusion that, to progress, they will need to leave the company…. And whoosh they’re gone!

Supporting development means – supporting and arranging employee career progression and development.

Our Leadership & Management Development Programme covers the competencies and behaviours required for sustainable employee engagement, health and wellbeing. Through coaching and setting appropriate challenges we help managers to apply and embed the competencies in the workplace.

If you would like to know more about our Leadership & Management Development Programme Click here.

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