How to Make the Most of Your Employees’ Skills

The majority of employers will agree that the most valuable resource a business possesses is its employee workforce. Employees can provide the creativity, productivity, and overall driving force required to make an enterprise successful.

But this is only true if managers and other individuals in charge take certain steps to ensure that they capitalize on the unique skill sets of their employees. Otherwise, it’s just wasted talent. Here are some ways to make sure your employees are performing at their 100% at all times.

  • Create a Positive Corporate Culture

Whether we realize it or not, we are all highly affected by our surrounding environment. This not only applies to physical parameters like temperature but also to less tangible elements like the attitudes of those around us.

Major corporations like Google have realized that the so called “corporate culture” can have far reaching effects on the effectiveness of their employees. That’s why it is essential to foster an atmosphere that places a strong emphasis on being productive, creative, and achieving results. This culture should be present in every aspect of your company from the mission statement down to the everyday interactions you have with your employees.

  • Reward Outstanding Work

Employees tend to respond much better to a carrot rather than a stick – meaning that positive feedback is generally a much more effective method than criticism. Therefore, you should actively seek opportunities to reward the exceptional work performed by your employees. This shows them that you really appreciate their hard work and gives them motivation to continue churning out high caliber results.

Rewards don’t have to be extravagant affairs. For instance, if you notice a particular employee has been working extremely hard during the past week, you could mention them by name and publicly praise them at the next corporate meeting. A simple pat on the back and an enthusiastic “good job” can go a long way.

  • Use Project Management Software

Project management can be a difficult thing to master. There are so many components that you are forced to consider in every single decision – resources, goals, stakeholders, employees, etc. And in order for a project to be successful, you need to make sure that every single team member is contributing to the best of their ability. That means the skills of each employee need to be matched to a particular team member position. Only by matching skill sets with project roles will the greatest results be achieved.

You could potentially learn how to do this through painstaking trial and error, but that is completely unnecessary – there is specially designed project management software that can help you get the job done right. This software allows you to keep track of every aspect of your project including employee performance on tasks.

By using this software you may discover that you are not taking full advantage of the skills your employees possess and will be able to better align employees with assignments they will excel at. This leads to decreased downtime and heightened productivity.

  • Be a Good Listener

An important but often overlooked method of making the most of employees’ skills is simply listening to their feedback and opinions. You should regularly solicit input from your employees regarding whether or not they feel like their skills are being put to good use. If they feel like they could be more efficient in another role or could perhaps perform other tasks in addition to their regular job, carefully consider what they have to say.

The efficiency of a company’s employees and the extent to which their skills sets are put to use is largely determined by managers and employers. Make sure you’re getting the maximum results from your business’s most valuable resource.

Written by Manfredi Bargioni of Hydra Management, a UK based resource management software company company that optimizes resource utilization.