Did you know 90 percent of the decisions we make are based on emotion?
Think about what this means at work. When we experience positive emotions, we think better, perform better, become more solution-focused, better leaders, better team players, and make smarter decisions. On the contrary, the experience of negative emotions often leads to frustration, alienation, stress, anger, and poor or regrettable decision making. Don’t miss our previous post where we highlight the 10 most common positive emotions.
Our emotions influence our work life and employee experience. Positive or negative, emotions shape employees’ beliefs about the value of their job and the company, which, in turn, determines how they speak about their employer and whether they become brand ambassadors. And every company knows the power and influence of brand ambassadors when it comes to recruiting and retaining talent.
Brand Ambassadors Are Made, Not Born
In a recent survey of over 58,000 employees throughout Europe, participants were asked how much they agree with the statement, ‘I would recommend my current employer to a friend or former colleague.’ 62% of employees in Sweden, 44% in the Netherlands, 41% in Denmark, 38% in the UK, 36% in Germany and 29% in France say they strongly agree.
Regardless of whether we look at Sweden or France, that’s a lot of people who are willing to vouch for their current employer and, in the war for talent and future of work, brand ambassadors will play an increasingly important role in a company’s ability to attract and retain talent.
So, how do companies create brand ambassadors? First, companies must have a positive workplace culture where safety, trust, transparency, and fairness exist, where employees feel supported, wins are celebrated, and leaders are accessible. When combined, these elements produce the right conditions to experience positive emotions, increasing the likelihood of feeling emotionally connected to the company, its values and mission, and becoming a brand ambassador.
Creating the Right Conditions
With covid-19 having turned work as we once knew it on its head, company culture and employee experience have taken on a whole new level of importance. Today, employers need to work even harder to keep their most valuable asset and face the challenge of trying to maintain company culture, reinforce company values and create positive employee experiences while working at a distance.
Make no mistake — how employers have responded to the pandemic, maintained culture, and kept employees connected to the company will impact their ability to attract and retain talent in the future.
To create brand ambassadors today, the following is required:
- Employers need to create emotional experiences that unify employees
- Employers must establish trust and strengthen their bond with employees so that they feel connected to the brand
- Employers need to share their brand story and explain how and why this relates to each employee to deepen employees’ emotional connection to the company
- Employees must feel supported and appreciated
- Employers must convey why the help of each employee is needed
- Employers need to create a platform where employees can share their feedback and ask questions anonymously
Employers can increase the chances of employees experiencing positive emotions by conveying appreciation, conducting one-to-one talks, organizing online gatherings, frequently communicating about support programs, company wins, goals, news, and changes, and offering supportive employee benefit and reward programs. To get help building a benefits strategy that works, download our 5-step tip sheet.
Only through feelings of connectedness are employees likely to become brand ambassadors and spread the word about their employer. And in the war for talent, job seekers and candidates are more likely to trust what brand ambassadors say than what a company may officially say.