How To Build Organizational Relationships
Employee engagement is the lifeblood of successful organizations.
If you disagree, these two stats may help convince you:
- Research shows that employees with the highest level of commitment perform 20% better than those with an average level of commitment.
- Employees with the highest levels of commitment are also 87% less likely to leave the organization.
Happy, productive workers also boost customer satisfaction and sales revenues—especially if they work in an inbound call center or provide help desk or technical support.
But engagement hinges on the quality of an employee’s workplace relationships.
Put simply, the better the workers’ organizational relationships, the higher their engagement. The higher their engagement, the more productive they are.
Increased productivity generally translates to higher revenues and profits.
The question is: How do you build high quality organizational relationships among your workers?
Key Challenge To Building Relationships
The key challenge to building organizational relationships comes from the organization itself. That’s its focus.
If your organization focuses on short-term financial results, it can short-circuit any relationship building efforts that take place.
That’s because a short-term focus encourages managers to shoot for quick, easy wins instead of working toward strategic, long-term goals —even if the wins are not in the organization’s best interest.
Unfortunately, when managers shoot for short-term wins, they endanger long-term investment in employee engagement and overall economic success. This doesn’t help relationship building.
Organizations that focus on the long term, on the other hand, tend to boost relationship-building efforts—especially if they also invest in their workers’ communication skills.
Organizations that invest in improving these skills often surpass other organizations when it comes to worker engagement and retention.
Building Organizational Relationships
The secret to building organizational relationships is having effective conversation with workers. These types of conversations with workers create, build, and sustain relationships.
Effective conversations—whether they’re taking place to resolve a conflict, help coach others, or negotiate productively—help build relationships no matter what the situation.
But effective conversations can only take place if candor, collaboration, and trust exist within an organization’s culture.
Lets look at each of these three relationship-building drivers:
Executives don’t learn to be candid in MBA programs. It’s an acquired skill that they must learn on their own. Nevertheless, candor is critical to having effective conversations and building organizational relationships.
Candor creates transparency by helping workers understand organizational strategies and individual development paths.
Candor about strategies helps workers understand what the organization’s long-term goals are and their role is in achieving them.
Candor about career goals and the ways workers can attain them give workers the feeling that they have some control over their careers and have advocates committed to their growth.
Creating collaboration has to be an honest effort. Otherwise, the effort will be for nothing. Collaboration helps spur effective conversations.
Put simply, workers must feel they can express thoughts and emotions without fear or retaliation. They also need to feel safe questioning the opinions of others and that they can respond openly if questioned by others.
In addition, Collaboration helps workers make better, more knowledge-based decisions and more profitable decisions.
More important, it strengthens worker relationships, builds alignment, and engages champions and sponsors for projects.
Trust is critical to creating a healthy environment where relationship building can take place. Like candor and collaboration, it spurs effective conversations.
The best way to create trust is through encouraging input.
According to a recent survey, 80% of respondents that reported healthy worker/supervisor relationships said the most important thing a manger can do to create positive relationships is to solicit and value worker input.
Candor, collaboration, and trust create a firm foundation for a culture where effective conversations can happen.
These types of conversations help build solid high quality organizational relationships—the key to boosting employee engagement.
Higher engagement increases productivity and customer satisfaction—especially in inbound call centers—making engagement the lifeblood of a successful organization.
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