Workers seek inspiration

IF WORKERS in the Northern Rivers region are anything like their counterparts in wider New South Wales, they are craving inspiration and looking to their boss to provide it, according to an annual investigation by recruitment and human resources specialists, Randstad.

Its 2011 World of Work Report found half of NSW’s 3.6 million employees rate the ability to motivate and inspire as the single most important attribute of a successful leader. However, about a third of employees rate their direct manager as poor or average in this.

A convincing 74% of workers say their leader adapted well to change in the past 12 months, yet Randstad chief executive Fred van der Tang says this is no longer a priority, with only 11% of employees rating the ability to adapt as the most important attribute of a successful leader.

“Business leaders performed exceptionally well during a period of great economic instability, adapting to change and adeptly guiding their business through the uncertainty,” Mr van der Tang said.

“In order to ride the next wave of growth, leaders need to shake off the pragmatic approach embraced during the downturn, and refocus their energies on inspiring and motivating their staff.”

More than one in five NSW employees say having a strong understanding of how their role contributes to achieving business goals is their single biggest motivation to perform well, while a further 10% say having a strong belief in the strategic vision and goal of their organisation is paramount.

“Leaders who are able to effectively communicate their business’ strategic direction have a massive influence on employee engagement levels. Ultimately, employees want to feel their efforts are not only directly contributing to a vision, but the vision is authentic and inspiring – something they can work towards and feel good about,” Mr van der Tang said.

He said the ability of managers to “shift gears” was becoming increasingly important.


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