The Shift - February 1, 2024

The Shift - February 1, 2024

Hello and welcome to The Shift, Blink’s bi-monthly newsletter for frontline champions.  

Coming up in this issue:

  • How to make frontline managers less stressed and more effective
  • The value of experience investment – and a holistic metric to measure it
  • Predictions for high worker turnover in early 2024 and how to prevent attrition at your organization

Lightening the load on frontline managers

Everyone remembers a great manager. But the terrible ones tend to stick in the memory, too. And – as anyone who’s worked under a disengaged manager can confirm – manager input has a big effect on you and your fellow employees.  

Gallup has the research to prove it. They found that 70% of the variance in team engagement is determined solely by the manager.

When managers are supportive and engaged, they and their teams drive business success. But when frontline managers are feeling stressed and disengaged, performance across the whole company suffers.

Unfortunately, according to Gallup, disengagement is the norm for lots of frontline managers right now.

Across the globe, many managers are worn, stressed, and tired. Engaging them takes skill and determination from committed leaders.

So what can we do to improve manager engagement?

We know that frontline managers have a lot on their plate. So lightening their load is a sensible first step. You can do this in two key ways:  

  • Providing ongoing manager development so managers get more efficient and effective in their roles
  • Giving employees the option to self-serve so managers get fewer queries and requests

A tool like Blink acts as a digital front door for your organization. It allows employees to perform tasks without manager input.

They can get company updates, book shifts, view their pay stubs, and even build better relationships with co-workers – independently, via their smartphones.

If you’d like to find ways to make frontline managers less stressed – and more effective – take a closer look at Blink Hub features.  

Reasons to ring-fence your experience budget

Economic times may be tough. But companies could be shooting themselves in the foot if they start to view experience investment as a discretionary spend.

So says a recent Fast Company article, which argues that experience spending should be at the center of business strategy.

That means spending money on things like:

  • Customer experience (e.g. improving user experience on the company website)
  • Employee experience (e.g. improving the digital tools employees use)
  • Product experience (e.g. adding a new product feature to better meet customer needs)

And acknowledging that employee and customer experiences connect and overlap. You can’t deliver five-star customer experiences if your employees are disengaged.

By continuing to invest in experience, you build stronger relationships and reduce friction for both customers and employees. This benefits your bottom line.

Companies that prioritize experience increase their revenue 1.7 times faster than those that don’t. We also know that improved experience leads to better business resilience, employee engagement, customer loyalty, and employee retention.

But – of course – to justify ongoing investment, you need to show how a better experience impacts your organization.

CEO Ron Shamah recommends using a return on total experience (ROTX) framework. This framework connects customer, employee, and product experience. So you can better understand how all experience investment generates revenue and creates business savings.

ROTX improves the visibility of experience performance, reveals which experience initiatives are most effective, and – crucially – demonstrates the value of experience to your company.

You can read more about ROTX in this PwC article: How to get started with the new experience metric.

Preventing an employee exodus in 2024

More than a quarter of employees said they didn’t see themselves continuing to work for the same employer in 2024 because they didn’t feel respected and didn’t enjoy their work. That’s according to a Boston Consulting Group (BCG) survey of 11,000 workers late last year.

These findings support research from management consulting firm, Eagle Hill. The firm predicts higher worker turnover in the first half of 2024 because workers are considerably less confident about their organization’s stability and leadership.

According to Eagle Hill president and CEO, Melissa Jezior, “Now is the time to engage with the workers [you] want to keep”.

Workers feel most pessimistic about organizational culture and confidence. But – as Eagle Hill points out – these are two areas where employers have the power to intervene and make a positive impact.

Start by:

  • Running staff surveys to find out what matters to employees
  • Offering regular recognition so employees feel valued and respected at work
  • Building relationships with and between employees to develop a transparent and welcoming culture
  • Investing in frontline manager training so managers can better support employees and their workplace experience

Get more tips on engaging your frontline workforce here: 7 best practices for managing frontline employees

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