Autonomy, Connection, Equity. Three human-first solutions for a happy, loyal workforce

February 15, 2024
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How do we keep employees? Not just in the literal sense of retaining talent, but how do we keep them happy and engaged? All over the world, people are still job hopping in record numbers, unwilling to stay in roles that don’t fulfill their needs. But, happily, the solution to this question is no big secret.

Companies can keep talent by implementing three core traits: autonomy, connection and equity. If you build your company culture and structure around these three practices, you’re on the road to retaining talent, and lasting success.

So, how do they work in context?

Autonomy and the art of letting go

Autonomy is about more than letting employees work how and when they like. Certainly, most of us tend to work better when we’re not micromanaged and can work flexibly, but real autonomy is about trust. Leaders and managers must be able to trust others to get the job done and hand over the weight of responsibility.

Giving people autonomy enables them to learn faster. We’re forced to make decisions and - yes - sometimes learn from our mistakes. In return, employees who have autonomy at work are more likely to feel satisfied and engaged, whether that’s through the freedom to work remotely, or the headspace to simply get things done.

It can be daunting, especially at smaller companies where every decision has an impact, but letting go of control is actually beneficial for leaders, too. As we climb the ladder towards greater success, we must all eventually learn that valuable lesson: we can’t do it all on our own.

The power of good connection

We all know it: the people make the job. Feeling connected and close to colleagues and leaders is a surefire way to encourage talent to stay and build a lasting career at a company. But connection doesn’t happen by magic, it requires structure, organization and encouragement.

By creating opportunities to connect, whether that’s through team-building activities, social events, training sessions or volunteer work, you’re handing people the opportunity to forge those connections. At the end of the day, loyalty is the holy grail of attitudes. Loyal employees are not only more likely to stay, but more likely to do great work, and connected employees are loyal employees.

Understanding and using equity

In 2024 and beyond, “treat everyone the same” is not actually the win we might think it is. In the world of work especially, we must recognise that in a lot of cases, it’s actually beneficial to treat people differently depending on their needs and backgrounds. This is what we mean by equity.

For example, you might have one employee with a physical disability and one without. By giving them the same requirement of three compulsory days in the office, you may be putting the disabled employee at a disadvantage. It’s not nearly so easy for them to commute to work, or easily get things done away from home. Companies that understand the nuances of equity are far more likely to have happy, loyal employees. Humans are intrinsically different. That’s what makes life interesting!

At Remotify, we’re all about creating workplaces that are happy and human-first, through implementing remote work practices.  If you’d like to find out more about how we can make your company a great place to work, book a call with a member of our team today.

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