listening to employees

The importance of listening to employees: key 5 reasons

Listening to employees seems inevitable if we want to succeed in the OKRs set by the company to fulfill its mission. However, there are different ways of listening to employees or, rather, different listening levels, depending on which productivity improvement can occur, regress, or simply stagnate. 

In this post, we discuss why it is essential to establish this type of constructive interaction with the workforce and which are the most appropriate channels to establish this contact.

Why is listening to employees important?

Listening to employees is important because it benefits them both as individuals and as a group, but also, of course, for the company. After all, what is good for the people who make up the team is usually good for the organization in which they work, whether in the short, medium, or long term.

listening to employees

1. Provides “affection” to employees 

Listening attentively, actively, and presently to a person or a group of people is also a way of taking into consideration those interlocutors for their importance and the interest in what they have to say and opening a channel for validation, mutual recognition and the solution of possible problems – in this case within the company – that may be occurring.

2. Provides first-hand information

Any company executive, manager, or decision-maker knows there is no better way to find out what is happening to employees than by asking them themselves and, of course, by listening carefully to their answers. Therefore, listening to employees is important because it provides direct information about the characteristics and needs of the people who currently make up the workforce.

3. Enhances good communication

Like other processes and elements that make up the exchange of information within the company, listening to employees is part of efficient internal communication. It, therefore, contributes to improving the performance of team members.

4. Contributes to a good working environment

Although it does not depend solely on efficient listening by the organization’s managers, it is clear that listening to employees with interest and applying the information gathered in actions oriented to their well-being favors maintaining a positive work environment within the organization.

5. Improves employee experience

Everything discussed so far significantly impacts the quality of life experienced by employees in the day-to-day work they do for the company. Whether through specific examples or as an ongoing dynamic part of people-centric company culture, listening to employees enhances their experience during their journey within the company.

How to listen to employees

Regardless of the size of its workforce and its turnover, within the daily life of an organization, there are different channels and spaces where employees can be listened to in a constructive and useful way. 

Depending on how the company’s processes are carried out and, of course, on the charisma and attitude of the interlocutors, this listening will take place more systematically or exceptionally. Here are some examples of occasions for listening to employees.

1. Surveys

Although they can sometimes be somewhat tedious, especially if they are not part of a well-designed strategy, surveys on motivation, interests, work climate, suggestions for improvement, and any other subject on which employees can give their opinion can be a good tool for gathering everything they can contribute.

2. Performance reviews

It doesn’t matter whether they are called that name, whether they are called one-to-one or talent reviews, or whether they occur every three months or once a year: every face-to-face meeting with an employee is a golden opportunity to listen to them, generating an environment of trust that favors honesty and, hence, the depth of their answers.

3. Exit interviews

The final moment of a person’s journey within the company is also an appropriate time to listen to employees. Their position can be considered vulnerable due to the fear of not being heard in their opinions now that they are leaving. Still, it can also be privileged because of the level of freedom with which they can express themselves and make suggestions for improvement that will result in the company’s progress.

listening to employees

4. Team building activities

It’s not just about playing together, entertaining employees, or offering them a different kind of workday. Depending on how they are designed, team-building activities offer a good opportunity to observe and listen to employees more informally and spontaneously, encouraging responses that would not emerge in more informal contexts.

5. Coordination meetings 

People always talk about team meetings to complain about the number of times they are held, their duration, lack of structure, and, ultimately, their inefficiency. How about turning them into an occasion for productive exchange and mutual listening, which results in team cohesion and improved productivity?

We hope you found this post on listening to employees constructively interesting. If you would like more information about ifeel’s emotional well-being service for companies, simply request it, and we will contact your team as soon as possible.

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