The employee experience is often defined by their manager; more than by any other factor in an organization. This ripple effect means that a highly engaged manager creates a much stronger EVP, and communicates a more authentic employer brand.
Here are some of the most important things you can do to ensure your managers are aligned with your brand:
Know your audience
Make sure that you know how engaged your managers are. What is the EVP for your leadership team? Is it different from that of a front line employee? Check in frequently; through surveys, stay interviews, or just regular water cooler conversations. If these pulse-checks tell you that engagement is low – find out why, and address it!
Ensure expectations are clear, simple and consistent.
As organizations grow, some management job descriptions can become a long list of mismatched responsibilities. Take the time to align all the job descriptions across the organization with the employer branding messaging. Clearly communicate organizational goals, and focus the job descriptions on the 3-5 areas that will make the biggest impact on the business. When the direct connection between the success of the individual and the success of the organization is easier to see, it’s easier to attain.
That which gets measured, gets done.
Once it is clear what your leaders are responsible for – make it measurable and make it count. Defining how success in a role will be measured in advance, gives each person a way to self-manage to the end result they know they are accountable for. Align the performance review process and your compensation plans with the key results areas. Link any bonus structure directly to the key performance indicators.
A supported leader is a supportive leader.
Provide the tools and support your management needs to help their teams succeed. Create an onboarding program that will help new managers, and newly promoted managers understand the kind of employee experience your company wants to build. Provide examples of positive behaviours they should reinforce – and give them guidelines for recognition. Of equal importance, give them some tools to help them recognize and address behaviours that negatively impact the environment and are not aligned with brand values.
Target your communications to your managers in advance.
Help your management team stay engaged by keeping them informed, and feeling that they truly are ahead of the curve. Make sure they have the agenda for any initiatives in advance and they are given a clear role to play. Help your managers stay engaged by ensuring they understand that the role they play in building the EVP is critical, and valued.