Getting employee buy in
I’m sure that at some point in your career you’ve been told to get on with a task with no idea why you should do it and therefore either carried out the task, but to the minimum standard, or worse still simply avoided it altogether.
Last week on a management workshop I was running, we discussed how we get people to buy-in to a task, so people do the task willingly, enthusiastically, and even with a degree of pride.
At the very least to get buy in and for team members to do anything with any degree of commitment they need to understand the reasons why – why does it need doing in the first place and why them. Identify reasons or benefits that are personal to them, not just how it helps the business.
Better still ask for their input in what needs to be done or in the way it has to be done. You might be thinking “well if it is a new law or company policy it won’t be open to discussion”. True, what has to be achieved may not be open to discussion, but the way it is achieved might well be.
Let’s say you have a new piece of health and safety legislation to introduce. It’s the law, so it is not negotiable. But because it is the law, all the more reason why you can’t have people deciding to ignore it. You need that buy in. Threats might work, but not very effectively.
What is negotiable is the way it can be achieved. By asking for people’s ideas, recognising their experience and knowing the work better than anyone, they will often come up with the best way to implement something that on the face of it is just extra workload. The greater the level of involvement in the process and decision-making; the greater the level of buy in.
And if they come away thinking it was their idea, the more likely you are to see it done with some degree of enthusiasm, commitment or pride.
Gaining buy-in Video from the A-Z of managing people