Honestly, what keeps you awake at night as a farm manager or owner regarding people? Do you need to make changes, but realize that people are not engaged? Or have you hired an employee you thought was wonderful and one week later he is delivering less than he should?
The answer to these questions boil down to one single question: “why do I need to invest in people?” You must do it for three basic and fundamental reasons: to gain productivity. You will double the production and profit of your farm when you find skilled people. To have in your team, at the same time, productive and resilient people, that is, who are able to learn from difficulties. And to have a high level of engagement and participation, that is, people who make things happen.
Regarding people, we are moving from ordinary management to an increasingly smarter management with a focus on knowledge. This means that you can no longer be a manager who plays checkers, who treats the whole team the same way and communicates and engages the same way. Now you must be a manager who plays chess, that is, who knows the differences between his team members and who is able to deal with each one of them individually. After all, to differentiate your business in the market you, the manager, must have in your team people who are innovators and doers.
But what is the difference between motivation and engagement?
A common mistake made by managers in Brazil is to mistake motivation for engagement and many companies resort to magicians, tree-hugging and all sorts of group activities to motivate their employees. However, this motivation lasts only for a few days. Why? Because motivation is intrinsic, it is individual and you cannot touch it.
Engagement, on the other hand, is a functional and emotional commitment that is catalyzed and stimulated by enhancing the potential and performance of your talents. Usually these are the employees you can rely on at the farm, those you know will solve problems and go beyond the tasks they are supposed to carry out.
Therefore, you need engaged people in your business and the two main elements of engagement are progression and sense of fairness. Thus, you should bear in mind that people perform and engage in different ways. Consequently, assess your talents not for what they know and say, but for what they actually do.
Therefore, if you want to improve the engagement and performance levels of your team, you must continuously tell them what your goals are and align your expectations with their expectations.
Types of engaged people
There are basically three types of people in companies: those who are engaged, those who are not engaged and those who are disengaged. Those who are engaged deliver well, are focused and have the extra energy to do things. This is usually the kind of employee you can rely on at the farm.
Those who are not engaged are the employees who are needed at the farm, who work well, but who do not do anything that is not part of their job. They are not able to perform tasks that are strategic or not part of their routine.
Those who are disengaged, in turn, are those employees who deliver below the average and usually give excuses in the process. They usually bring more problems than solutions.
How can we work with these three profiles?
1st – Assess the engagement and competence of every employee by talking to them in order to understand their level of engagement.
2nd – Get rid of ambiguities, bureaucracy and disorganization.
3rd – Help your employees improve. Work on meritocracy.
4th – Lead by example as a manager. Do your part. Be a coach to your team.
In practice, uniqueness will improve performance and engagement but, above all, it will enhance knowledge. Thus, it all depends on how you will manage your team so that they are increasingly productive and engaged.