You might have really good employees. But wouldn’t you rather have great ones? We think all employees have the potential to do incredible work (which is why our company mission is to set people free to do just that). But it’s important that they have the support and drive to get there. That’s why one of our company values is Grow from Good to Great.
It’s a responsibility every Bamboo employee takes upon themselves—to perfect whatever their craft is, whether it’s development or the perfect sales pitch or creating excellent culture videos. It’s also a value that adds a responsibility onto leaderships’ shoulders—to grow and develop their teams from good to great. But we even take it a step further. As a company, we feel that we have a responsibility to grow HR (and by extension all of the employees they are responsible for) from good to great. Here’s how we do all of those things:
Every employee at BambooHR is challenged to become better than they have been. One of the most tangible ways we do that is through making and tracking our goals. We make personal goals to learn skills, improve processes, implement new practices on our teams, and more. Each employee is then responsible for updating their goals in a place where their managers (and other members of upper management) can keep an eye on how progress is improving—they can even comment to encourage and praise progress (“Great job! I love this goal.” “Looks like you’re making some real improvements. Keep it up!”).
Bamboo’s team members are also encouraged to spend a little time developing and learning new skills. Coworkers watch webinars, study books, shadow each other, and do many other things to make sure they’re constantly growing from good to great.
We think it’s every leader’s responsibility to help employees reach their potential. Leaders here do that in many different ways. Here are a few:
One-on-ones: Leaders at BambooHR meet with their team members individually on a regular basis to discuss how things are going. Goals are reviewed. Performance is managed. Career paths are discussed to see what employees are really enjoying and what they’d like to do more of in the future.
Recognition: One of the best ways to encourage employees to seek professional development is to recognize them when they do. Some of that is done individually (see one-on-ones above), but other times it’s useful to recognize employees publicly. Leaders sometimes get the opportunity to call-out employees for developing new team initiatives or improving processes—basically growing anything in their reach from good to great.
Allowing everyone to take the lead: This growth technique intersects with another Bamboo company value. In order for employees to grow into leaders themselves, they have to be given the opportunity to take the lead. It might not be done perfectly (or exactly how their manager would do it), but with a little guidance, opportunities to lead bring invaluable innovation and growth.
Unfortunately, we can’t physically come to each customer’s office on a regular basis to create a development plan to help them grow from good to great. What we can do is make sure everything we create for our HR customers helps them be a little better than they have been before. As such, we feel we have a personal responsibility to constantly seek to improve everything we put out as a company—from articles, to innovative and improved software, to help resources—for the sake of making HR better. We care deeply about helping HR grow their teams, personal careers, and even all the employees in their companies from good to great. And the way we can do that is by giving them the absolute best-value products.
Making the case for growing from good to great
Now you know how we grow from good to great, but maybe you’re wondering why. Well, first of all, whether you’re out in nature or nurturing employees, it’s important to leave things better than you found them. It’s the right thing to do (another company value). But employees also want it—76 percent of employees want opportunities for career growth. If you’d like loyal employees, investing in their development is a great way to endear them to you. And while they’re with your company, they’ll be improving (or growing) their performance and abilities. Investing wisely in your employees is a great way to grow that asset.
Also, many of your employees are likely doing work they don’t feel they’re best equipped for, and that decreases their satisfaction. Twenty-five percent of employees say they would be more satisfied with their jobs if they were doing what they’re best at. You should want your employees doing what they’re best at anyway. If you have a customer service representative with a real penchant for sales, they’d likely be happier if they moved positions and your sales would likely improve for having them there. It’s a win-win.
The importance of career growth is only increasing as millennials prefer it over most other job perks. In fact, almost 60 percent of millennials prefer to have jobs with strong potential for professional development. Further, only 26 percent feel their employers are investing in that development. (Looks like professional development could be a great way to give yourself a recruiting advantage.)
So employees want it. Companies get better workforces by doing it. And, perhaps most importantly, it’s simply the right thing to do. There are many reasons we feel it’s important for everyone to be striving to grow from good to great. That’s why we do it personally, as teams, and as a company. And that’s why it’s one of our company values.
Have you created company values to help promote a great culture at your company? “Grow from Good to Great” is one of our company values at BambooHR. This is the fifth in a blog series designed to explore different company values, see if they may be right for your company, and show how you can apply them in your workplace as well.