What Leaders Need to Know About What Employees Want

A recent report by Deloitte called; The Human Capital Trends Survey for 2018,  highlights what employees want in today’s workplace.

Today I want to highlight some of the crucial points that leaders need to know so they can consider how they and their organisations are responding today and in the future to what employees want.


Why Do Leaders Need To Know About What Employees Want?



There are many skills that successful leaders have, and strategic business thinking is one of them. Being curious about the environment you and your employees are working in is one part of this, while another is being able to have strategies and plans in place so that the company and its leaders can respond to changes; the changing needs of employees being one example.

We all know that there isn’t an organisation without people to drive it forward. The more leaders understand the needs of this invaluable group of people the more significant their opportunity is to succeed.


What Exactly Do Employees Want?

The Deloitte Human Capital Trends survey for 2018 suggests that employees are now evaluating organisations on specific criteria.

The top three being: From careers to experiences, the importance of workplace wellbeing and the rise of the hyper connected work force

Let’s take a closer look at what each of these means.


From Careers to Experiences



Employees are no longer only looking for ways to pay their mortgage and provide for their families.  People want a career that’s going to provide opportunities to have experiences which allow them to grow and develop as a person and in their career.

This could be anything from; taking a sabbatical to study, a secondment into a client’s company or a third sector/ not for profit organisation, through to attending leading industry conferences, or representing your local office at a company international conference.

You may be thinking; “but this is no different from what our company offers today to support our teams to develop.”

However, it is when you consider that we used to think of a career as a source of income.

Rather than a career being about income, the move is towards experiences, and this is a word I frequently hear today and not one that was common when I first started ZestFor.

This means that the organisations willing to implement strategies for personal and professional growth that focus on ‘experiences’ are more likely to attract and retain the right talent.


The Importance of Workplace Wellbeing

Advances in technology especially with smartphones, and various communication platforms and apps not only are virtual teams now common place but the lines between our personal and professional worlds are increasingly blurred.

A consequence of the above and the pace and demands of the world we live in means there is an increased risk of overwhelm and in stress levels for leaders and their teams.

In the Deloitte Survey, 86% of organisations suggested that well-being is a critical driver of productivity. After all, when the people in your team feel happy and healthy, they’re more capable of achieving their goals and aspirations.

To ensure your company wellbeing strategy delivers, consider the following:

  • Asking your employees what they need rather than assuming everyone wants a gym pass.
  • Create ways to make wellness part of the company culture and how people go about their day to day work.
  • Encourage open communication so that your team feel comfortable discussing their needs regarding health and wellbeing. Remember that wellbeing is not only about physical health, but a person’s mental state too.
  • Be honest with yourself; how confident as a leader are you having a wellbeing conversation?
    If not ask for access to training.


The Rise Of The Hyper Connected Work Force

As I eluded to earlier, communication tools are everywhere in the modern workplace. This means managers can manage remotely, delegate work, and team members can collaborate on projects.

While technology plays a valuable role in allowing employees to work in new ways, we have all experienced at times the equal frustration of technology when it’s introduction has been poorly planned and implemented.

The Deloitte survey found that our hyper-connected workforce needs to be led by employees as opposed to the current employer approach.

This means it is time for leaders to talk with and listen to their teams to understand which connectivity tools they need, before bringing new ones into the mix.

A considerable part of being a successful leader is having the ability to think strategically and have great people and management skills. How well do you understand the needs of your team members? Is it time to get to know them even more?

Want help developing your ‘virtual leadership skills’ then do get in touch you can email us here.
Until next time