The Career Well-Being of Your Team

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Fall is one of my favorite times of the year. It’s the season for football, pumpkin spice lattes and — team planning! 

As business leaders, we take pride in the people and teams we manage. Their success is our success and gives us the confidence to continue to evolve.

The new year is only three months away! And after the holidays wrap up, a lot of decisions will be made by members of your team as they’ll be designing their personal and professional plans for the year. 

According to Indeed, “Companies tend to hire most in January and February.” Your team members might already be thinking about a move away from your company, leaving you with gaps to immediately fill. 

Therefore, as you prepare for a busy holiday season heading into 2022, this is an opportunity to make sure you’re thinking about the career well-being of your team members. 

Here’s how: 

Talk with your team members about their role. 

When I ran agency account teams, I made time to talk to my teams often about their current role, what they are interested in doing, and how that mapped to the goals of the agency. 

Based on their feedback we did what we could to make sure their career trajectory was a fit for the client and the firm. As a result, that meant shuffling around responsibilities, creating brand-new roles, or finding opportunities for team members to work on other account teams. 

More than anything, the team members appreciated that their careers were being thought about first. 

Recommendation: Host 30-60 minute conversations with your team members every six months specifically focused on their role and how it ladders up to their career ambitions. Listen to what they are saying. 

Be proactive about the future work environment. 

We know the evolving landscape of the work environment in this new era will continue to be a challenge. This can cause stress and anxiety for your team. Recently, I led a workshop for a PR firm that wants to ensure its employees can work in person safely as part of a hybrid solution. 

We had a positive and transparent discussion with all agency employees centered around the specific benefits of working at home and in the office for both the employee, the client and the organization. 

Recommendation: If you haven’t already, discuss your expectations with your team. This is a topic I covered back in the March issue on designing your team charter.

Learn to let it go with grace; it’s essential for your well-being. 

A lot of us take our employees’ leaving very personally. We can question ourselves, which can cause an impact on our confidence. I want us always to take a step back, evaluate the situation, and examine our role. 

Often, we forget the positive impact we had on our team to set them up for success to secure that new role. The other thing we always need to keep in mind is that the employee you used to manage could become a future partner, client or boss! Your employees will remember how you respond to them leaving.

Recommendation: When a team member is moving on, make sure to end this chapter of your professional relationship on a high note. Celebrate them and thank them for their partnership.

If you prepare now, the start of 2022 will go much smoother for you and your teams!

Happy fall, everyone! Be safe, be kind, be well.

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