Your employee has dropped that dreaded "B" word. They're bored. They want to grow. They want to take on more responsibility, have more challenges, and climb up the corporate ladder into an executive position.
The opportunity for growth is a huge selling point for talent. No one wants to be doing the same thing day in and day out. Boredom is dangerous and a leading cause of turnover. Like it or not, your team will be out the door if they're stuck on repeat.
However, the problem is that you're currently tapped out in higher-up roles. Businesses are shaped like pyramids; there's simply no way you can have 10 managers and two employees. While you value this employee and don't want them to leave, the timing's just not right.
When you're put in this position, it's time to get creative. There are many ways people can grow that do not require a new title or salary increase. So when there's no career ladder available, consider these five strategies to get rid of boredom and boost morale.
1. Make a lateral move.
While there may not be a senior position available, there could be many more lateral opportunities. Check to see if a different department is in need of support. For example, a sales associate could move into a marketing associate position, or a human resources coordinator could dive into customer service.
While the pay grade would be the same, it will bring a complete new set of challenges for the employee to navigate. It will also give the team they're joining a fresh set of ideas and a new perspective.
2. Create a new role.
From "culture coordinators" to an "onboarding specialist," is there a position that could really benefit your company? Boosting company morale through social outings and team development workshops is incredibly important for every business, but it's often an after-thought to the hundreds of other things on your plate.
Reflect on the year ahead and see where potential gaps may need filling. If you're launching a new product or service, perhaps a digital project manager may need to oversee it. If this person seems like the right fit, there's no reason to hold them back.
3. Focus on skills growth.
Invite them to learn a new skill set and send them for development and training. If they're in marketing, maybe they want to learn graphic design or try their hand at video production. This will not only keep them challenged, it will also create more opportunity for your business by allowing you to expand your services.
4. Treat them like partners.
Start involving them in decisions, no matter how big or small they may be. If they've been with you for a number of years, then they'll know the ins and outs of the company. Ask for their thoughts on company goals, targets, and strategy. Giving them a voice will show that you value their opinion and want to keep them close to the company.
5. Assign meaningful projects.
Switch up their day-to-day by giving them new projects. Even better, offer for them to take on something you've been putting off for a long time. This doesn't mean you ask the employee to alphabetize your files. Instead, offer meaningful projects that are important to the company.
Maybe this could be crafting a new company mission statement, creating or amending training manuals, or developing new concepts for the website. These are really important for the brand but tend to be put on the back burner for busy leaders. Having input in your company's image will give them a stake in the business and a new challenge to pursue.