Did you know that presenteeism—the problem of employees being present, but disengaged at work—costs companies up to 10X more than absenteeism (away due to sickness)?
It’s the shadow issue that few people are talking about or even understand.
Companies with low engagement, and little to no focus on employee wellbeing, have a 48 percent chance of losing great people to more progressive, forward-thinking organizations that value the personal development of their workforce.
What if you could do things differently?
If you had an engaged, healthy, thriving workplace, what would that do for your mission, your stakeholders, your results, and your legacy? If every member of your team could be five percent, 10 percent, or even 25 percent more effective and engaged every day—not to mention happier and healthier—how would that impact your people, your culture, your morale, and your bottom line?
One of the most effective ways to ignite your company from within and create a team of high-performing professionals is by cultivating personal growth and great habits in the workplace.
Habit is just another word for the way we do things. And while workplace habits may not sound like a very exciting topic, changing the way we do things for the better can lead to some very exciting results!
We all have habits, and all habits have power. Since our habits can be either good or bad in terms of results, they’re constantly propelling us and our companies toward a specific future, whether we like it or not.
When we think about bad habits, we might immediately think about habits that are destructive. But bad habits can also look like everyday behaviour: not necessarily destructive, but definitely not productive.
Good habits, on the other hand, are proactive, productive, and creative. They move us forward to uncover our potential. Good habits create the outcomes we’re looking for. And the good news is: good habits can be learned.
It’s the small changes that, over time, create the biggest results.
It’s more important than ever to instil great habits at work: habits that align with our existing company culture, values, and vision—or with the culture, values, and vision we want our company to have.
Creating great habits doesn’t just apply to wellness programs that focus on physical wellbeing. It also includes thinking and productivity habits. Workplace wellness is underpinned by mental wellness: if we are mentally well, it’s easier to be physically well.
Systems, apps, tests, and processes can help us measure workplace health, happiness, and engagement but how do you improve it?
By adopting and actively promoting, developing, and fostering the following Four Success Habits for High-Performance Teams, your workplace can have an uplift in morale, engagement, and results that high-performing companies exhibit.
HABIT 1: APPLIED KNOWLEDGE
While books, apps, and courses are an effective way to learn, applied knowledge is often overlooked and self-development can fall by the wayside as a result. No matter how many seminars, workshops, or training sessions you attend, if you aren’t applying what you learn in the workplace, your results will never change.
For change to happen, knowledge must be applied consistently through an action plan that creates highly productive habits in individuals—and a highly productive workforce overall. It needs to be simple enough that there’s no barrier to using it, but comprehensive enough to be impactful, purposeful while increasing profits.
The habit of shifting from knowledge and concepts to applied knowledge and action can make all the difference in succeeding at work. After all, knowledge is only information, but applied knowledge is wisdom.
How can your people practice personal growth as an active player, not simply through passive training and education that never gets applied?
HABIT 2: SELF-AWARENESS
According to a study by organizational psychologist Tasha Eurich, 95 percent of people believe they’re self-aware when the real number is closer to 10-15 percent.
This staggering misjudgment is both frightening and exciting!
It’s frightening because self-awareness in the workplace represents the pinnacle of mental health. Since a company can only be as healthy and self-aware as its workforce, if we’re unaware as individuals, we’re unaware as a company.
It’s also exciting, however, because all our potential lies in the unknown.
Self-awareness is about asking revealing questions to uncover our blind spots (a.k.a what we don’t know). Questions like these explore the whole person—not just who we are when we turn up at work.
Self-awareness is truly a lifetime process. And while it doesn’t happen overnight, it also doesn’t have to be complicated. Small changes can reap big rewards. The important thing is to have an internal process for practising self-awareness at work so it can become a consistent practice.
One of the biggest benefits of improving self-awareness in the workplace is that it tends to trickle down through a company’s culture, creating individuals who are more response-ABLE.
When people are more response-ABLE for their own state of being, they’re more likely to show up in an engaged and solution-focused way. Instead of defaulting to blaming their company, their boss, or some external situation for their results, they own what’s going on and take responsibility for what’s within their control.
How do you create a self-aware workforce?
You do it by making time for personal and professional growth, and through regular coaching conversations that focus on self-awareness as the foundation for a more engaged, productive, and healthy workplace.
For some people, this might seem like a strange way to achieve more success at work. After all, how will your team hit their targets if you shift gears and focus on self-awareness and personal growth?
The Dailygreatness philosophy says that, by slowing down to practice self-awareness, we actually go faster.
When you fill your cup and you are growing, you’ll have more energy and resources available to you. That means you’ll be able to show up more effectively for the projects and people you’re involved with, which will reflect in your company’s results. It’s that simple.
HABIT 3: PURPOSE
Nothing builds morale and a positive company culture better than shared purpose and solidarity.
Finding meaning and purpose in your work is one of the most important things you can do to increase your productivity, engagement, performance, and overall happiness in life.
According to the State of the Global Workplace report by Gallup, the biggest reason for employee disengagement is that most people in the workplace don’t feel they’re developing, and so lack a sense of purpose.
Having a sense of purpose at work has the potential to increase an employee’s engagement, happiness, and productivity by 20-25 percent. In fact, people who find meaning in their work, and who are aligned with their company’s purpose, have 1.7X higher job satisfaction and are 1.4X more engaged.
Moving from a ‘pay cheque-driven culture’ to a ‘purpose-driven culture’ is a valuable pursuit for every professional. The key is to understand your role and your purpose as part of your company’s vision and to find ways to continually connect with that purpose at work.
One study found that hospital cleaners who cleaned bedpans and mopped up vomit saw themselves as part of a bigger team whose purpose was to heal people. The researchers who conducted this study offer this up as proof that meaning doesn’t necessarily come from the actual tasks you perform—but rather from how you view your job, and how well you understand your role in the overall purpose of your business.
Purpose comes from understanding your values and knowing what is most important to you. Your purpose can become the driving force behind your decisions and actions, help you feel connected to those around you, and give meaning to your everyday life—including your work.
The habit of purpose is about continually reconnecting with what you value, so you can use it as a compass to guide and motivate yourself to stay focused and on-track when challenges present themselves.
Purpose is essential for thriving, expanding, growing, and staying aligned with both your personal vision and that of your company. And feeling inspired and connected to your purpose is the key to being engaged at work.
Around the world, progressive companies with great cultures are creating an entirely new way for their people to stay engaged by continually asking them, ‘How can we help you do your best work and connect with your purpose?’
When you realign your personal purpose with your company purpose, you’ll find new meaning that goes beyond a paycheque transaction to resonate with the reason your company exists. And that’s powerful.
HABIT 4: CONSISTENCY
Without the habit of consistency, every other habit is pointless. We have to achieve consistency if we want to see results.
How do we create consistency for success at work?
We create it by systemizing and scheduling our personal growth so our actions become habits that form our normal mode of operation. The best reason to timetable personal and professional growth is because what gets scheduled, gets done.
Starting and ending your day productively with a simple daily mindset practice of just 10-15 minutes in the morning, and 10-15 minutes in the afternoon or evening, can have profound effects on the quality of your work life and your results.
The simpler the process, the fewer barriers you’ll encounter, and the more likely you’ll be to use it to reap the rewards from day one.
When followed consistently, a simple daily structure of reflecting, resetting, and refocusing will help you be more purposefully aware, present, and engaged at work.
It’s no longer a luxury to invest in people, it’s a necessity for growth. If companies want to survive and thrive this global shift it’s up to them to give their people the tools they need to succeed at work and to empower them with self-development strategies to lead themselves, manage their wellbeing, and stay engaged and productive at work.
We’ve created the ultimate Success at Work Planner to support companies and their teams to develop their vision, goals, and targets. Complete with monthly and quarterly goal planners and KPI trackers, worksheets to plan your personal and professional growth, tools and exercises to identify your strengths and improve self-awareness, performance feedback worksheets, and accountability follow-ups to encourage ongoing coaching conversations to ensure you and your team stay on track and achieve your business goals.
Lyndelle Palmer Clarke is the founder of Dailygreatness, the author of the Dailygreatness Journals inspiring you to be your own guru and Rocking Fit a 12-week holistic training program designed especially for women.