Post-pandemic, senior leaders are dealing with a historic amount of disruption. From economic pressure, like inflation, a scare, competitive talent market, to global supply constraints, HR leaders with the support of senior leadership, must be able to invest in their current teams and technology for both current and future workers, work on developing or maintaining an engaging culture and employee experience. Here are some of the opportunities trending in HR for 2023.
Employee engagement strategies are crucial for organizations looking to get the most from their people. When employees buy into the company’s mission and vision, value the people they work with, and enjoy the role they’re in, productivity soars. Discretionary effort also increases—meaning employees tend to go that extra mile for your business. But how do you improve the actual experience to increase engagement? Here are 4 ways your organization can improve on employee experience:
- Chart a personalized development plan for your employees. Lack of career-growth opportunities is one of the leading drivers of employee turnover.
- Improve manager-employee relationship with awareness. For a manager, understanding how employees prefer to work and communicate can be the difference between a poor manager-employee relationship and a great one. Just as employees have a unique behavioral drives and needs, they also have preferred work and communication styles. Use data-driven assessments so that both managers and direct reports can learn and work on how to better interact with one another.
- Plan an “outing.” Remote work now a permanent way to work, not all teams can do in person outings. Consider a virtual team-building exercise. Virtual gatherings are a great way to build trust among team members and assess current team dynamics.
- Build a culture of diversity, equity, and inclusion. As the workforce becomes increasingly diverse, it’s important to have an employee base that’s just as varied, but inclusion doesn’t mean just hiring and celebrating underrepresented groups. Design your organization in a way that makes everyone feel like a valued contributor. At the end of the day, creating a diverse and inclusive culture isn’t just an HR responsibility, it’s a shared effort involving all employees, from all levers at your organization.
Regardless of massive layoffs from tech giants, more than half of organizations still expect competition for talent to continue for the next six months. It’s important the recruiters consistently prioritize to match recruiting strategies with business needs and strategy. If your organization does not have a robust system for recruiting, consider hiring an executive search firm. You may also consider:
- Developing your current employees.
- Updating your onboarding process and systems.
- Using data-driven assessments and analytics to hire top talent.
The expectation for what leaders are responsible for have changed sharply since the beginnings of COVID-19. Soft skills are high in demand – requiring leaders to be more authentic, empathetic and adaptive, essentially “human.”
It’s important for HR leaders to recognize their humanity and directly address emotional barriers that may keep them from connecting to their teams. Here are three ways to develop as a leader:
- Improve your leadership. Leadership skills, as with any skill, can weaken over time, It’s important that leaders periodically work on and have the capacity to adapt to changing working practices and expectations.
- Enhance empathy. Showing empathy in the workplace helps with both understanding the root causes behind changes in employee performance, as well as building trust and helping employees feel safe in their role. Developing your empathy puts you in the best position to listen, understand and try to solve employee concerns, something that will be essential with improving and maintaining employee experience overall.
- Develop your social skills. Heighten your self-awareness. Leaders need to be able to connect with everyone on their team, and having a wide array of social skills will allow you to connect with people in the most productive and effective way. This means looking beyond your own logic or opinions of the lockdown and trying to connect with your team on a new level. Social skills are at the core of successful relationships, so taking the time to focus on advancing these skills will improve the way you communicate and interact with the people on your team.
Due to uncertainty brought up my pandemic and now political and economic changes, change management should be a focus for senior HR Leaders. While the Gartner Workforce Change Survey in 2016 showed 74% of employees were willing to change work behaviors to support organizational changes, that number fell to 38% in 2022. Constant change can be detrimental to employee morale and engagement. It’s important for HR leaders to help employees to navigate change and mitigate the impact that change may have on their work and, more importantly, their well-being, overall increasing management success.
How We Work As We Know It
Although the future of work is often connected with hybrid or remote work, it’s important to anticipate future talent needs and constantly align your organization’s talent strategy with your business strategy. While workforce planning is often disconnected from reality, and equally ineffective in the current disruptive climate, it doesn’t have to be. Work on developing leadership skills, attaining the best talent, work on a culture that improves the employee-employer dynamic that will not only improve overall employee experience, but improve retention and increase business results.
About Newland HR
For over 30 years, we have worked with organizations worldwide on their most important executive recruitment, talent management, and consulting needs. Based in Puerto Rico, we’re a full-service Human Resources firm, offering expertly tailored HR Solutions, Advisory Support, Leadership Development, Executive Search, Outplacement, and Payroll.
Learn more about how Newland HR can help your organization adapt to these trends and plan for long-term success. Book a consult.