Develop High-Performing Managers in Manufacturing Environments

3 Mins

How to Develop High-Performing Manufacturing Managers

Manager behaviors have been a key factor driving critical success in attracting and retaining top talent. However, collecting feedback from frontline employees has been a continued challenge for most manufacturers and logistics companies. HR managers have limited options to create the frequent feedback and analytics needed to make data-driven recommendations to their C-Suite to impact cultural change.

Engaging workers in production and fulfillment environments presents unique challenges like high turnover, low psychological safety, and difficulty in reaching employees due to technological limitations. Even more so, HR managers in these organizations often face limited bandwidth to plan, deploy, and analyze the feedback at any frequency, aside from a traditional annual survey.

So, let’s start with manager behaviors and why they are so important.

Managers influence their team cultures every day

No one in the organization has a greater influence on a team than the team’s leader. The everyday behaviors of a manager impact employee job satisfaction, performance, and retention, so when a manager is behaving in a way that drives disengagement, it will negatively impact the organization.

Now, going back to the conundrum HR managers face: “How do I get honest feedback about how a manager is behaving in the workplace?”.

The three factors in collecting high-quality feedback on manager behaviors

Collecting honest feedback is hard, especially when a manager may have low trust, or when employees may fear retaliation in the event they give less than favorable feedback about their manager to their employer.

Objectivity: When defining the behaviors of a model manager for your organization, think about the observable behaviors of that individual rather than the way that person makes people feel. You may choose to align this with your core values, or if you have a competency model that’s a great place to start. Align these objective, observable behaviors to these competencies.

For example, if you want to develop accountability in your managers, you may create behaviors like, “NAME holds team members accountable for their performance” or “NAME sets clear performance goals for the team”.

Psychological Safety: For feedback programs to be effective, there has to be a high level of trust and psychological safety within the organization. Unfortunately, manufacturers often struggle with having a high-trust environment across the entire organization.This is why Rhabit feedback is anonymous and based on observable behaviors rather than form-based feedback that is difficult to write effectively if you’re not used to giving feedback to others. Using simple swipe technology Rhabit anonymously collects small pieces of feedback, building trust and confidence in the feedback process over time.

Actionable, Transparent Reporting: Administrators are the obvious benefactors of collecting frequent feedback about manager behaviors, but to drive self-awareness and impact measurable behavior change the managers themselves need to have access to the feedback. When given access to their Rhabit dashboards, most managers naturally start to improve their performance which, in turn, starts to positively impact the engagement of their team.

A Case Study in Action: Empowering Managers, Driving Results

Rhabit has the capability to reach employees at every level of an organization using simple swipe technology that is fast and easy to use on a phone or even a kiosk. Using elements of gamification, Rhabit takes the monotony out of giving frequent feedback, and encourages honest participation to help managers perform their best.

One instance of manager behaviors driving success comes from an advanced manufacturer that implemented Rhabit in 2020. Their focus was on strengthening manager performance and its impact on employee engagement. Here's what they achieved:

  • 9% increase in feedback scores related to creating a performance environment, indicating that managers are actively fostering a culture of continuous feedback and development, motivating their teams to excel.
  • 12% higher engagement score compared to the industry benchmark, specifically related to receiving sufficient performance feedback. This signifies that employees feel heard, valued, and supported in their growth journey.

Read the client story here to learn how Rhabit partnered with the CHRO to grow leader behaviors.

Are you ready to unlock the full potential of your managers?

Schedule a demo with Rhabit today and discover how our platform can help you build a culture of high performance.

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