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The definition of success is different for everyone, but for most of us it will probably be linked to profit or revenue – maybe even the strength of your brand or the size of your company’s market share.
But to truly understand all the aspects that have an influence on the success of your company, you should look at the real driving force behind your success: your employees. They’re not only the face of your brand, they’re also the ones servicing your customers or making your products.
Eric Mosley wrote in an article on chiefexecutive.net that employees are often the determining factor that distinguishes successful companies from ones that never reach their potential. The difference: successful, admired companies have engaged employees. He states that in a Towers Watson study of 50 companies over a period of one year, organisations with high employee engagement had a 19% increase in operating income and nearly 28% growth in earnings per share (EPS). On the other hand, companies with low levels of engagement saw operating income drop more than 32% and EPS decline by 11%.
In our focus feature this month, we also have articles on how to create an innovative culture in your organisation. And in an article about developing relationships in your accounting practice, Neale Roberts, writes that in the professional working arena, a lot of emphases is put on the technical aspects of a job with the assumption that the human element will take care of themselves, but for those who question the importance of relationships in business, there are some interesting stats to make you think:
The cost of renewing an existing customer is 11% of the cost of acquiring a new customer.
A 5% increase in customer retention can increase the company’s profitability by 75%.
Roberts asks why relationships matter so much. The answer is simple, he says: we like to work with those we know and like – for many business owners and managers there is comfort in having a professional that we trust and who we can call on when we need something done.
And to have innovative and engaged employees we need to create a challenging culture for them. Research has found that if people are placed in a role that challenges them, 67% will demonstrate above-average creativity and innovation in their performance. In contrast, only 33% of people in ‘easy’ jobs show above-average innovativeness. (Read the full article on page 30.)
It may, therefore, be a good idea to work towards engaging employees, because it is clear that one of the keys to long-term success is an engaged workforce. And when everyone is working towards a common goal, it may just take your company to new levels of innovation, growth, and real results.
Gerinda Engelbrecht | Editor
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