How to be an engaging manager

Build effective relationships with your employees


It is important that managers have good relationships with employees. If a manager knows and understands an employee as an individual, they will be able to better motivate them to perform well and deliver business success.

How to build effective relationships with your employees

Establishing good relationships with your staff can be done by:

Discovering staff interests

By taking an interest in employee's interests outside of work you can develop better connections. Staff feel valued and that they can bring their whole self to work. You will gain an understanding of what interests and motivates them.

Informal discussions

You could make time for informal discussions away from work distractions eg catch ups over coffee or at social events. By making yourself visible and approachable you give staff the confidence to converse with you.

Keep in regular touch with employees

You should regularly visit or hold conference calls with staff, especially those based in different locations or company sites. Just checking in every so often with individual staff members lets them know they are involved and supported.

Social events

Holding social events before or after business meetings helps you get to know individual team members and colleagues get to know each other eg monthly breakfasts or lunches after meetings.

Family events

You could host an annual party where employees have the chance to bring along their families eg for a family fun day. This shows that you value what is important in your employees' lives.

Regular staff communication

Managers also need to communicate with employees and give them the chance to share their views, contribute to improving business processes and define organisational goals. You could consider:

Regular staff updates

Regular meetings where staff are updated on the latest issues and ongoing developments in the business are very powerful in creating an open and honest culture. You could also use this platform to outline progress on corporate targets and key activities. You should have an agenda for each meeting so that you cover the key points and set enough time aside for staff to ask questions.

Ideas generation

You could set up forums where staff have the platform to address specific business issues and have the opportunity to suggest solutions and other ideas for improvement.

Team Q&A sessions

Develop sessions where employees can come and talk to you about any issues or ideas. These could be in an informal format eg lunchtime discussions or coffee catchup sessions.

Encourage feedback

Posing regular team challenges, asking for staff views, and encouraging team members to collaborate on ideas. See encourage staff feedback and ideas.

Responding to feedback

By acknowledging suggestions or concerns, explaining your views - whether you agree or not - and involving employees in developing actions to address emerging issues. Taking action on issues identified and sharing the steps you are taking so that employees know their voices are being heard.

Talking to individual employees

Talking to staff on a regular basis to check their understanding of objectives or key issues and inviting them to raise any questions or concerns they haven't discussed.