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An Inside-Out Approach to Organizational Performance

Posted on April 26, 2024

By Webster Bank

Market volatility, inflation, and geopolitical instability. Employee turnover, increasing wage expectations, and yawning skill gaps. The pressure is on senior leaders, from inside and outside their organizations.

For rapidly growing businesses, the demands are only compounded. Leaders are steering their companies into the future while contending with increasing cybersecurity risks, ballooning technology and equipment needs, and outgrowing their workplace. With increased overhead and cash flow pressures, maybe even outgrowing their bank.

It may be tempting to keep your head down and ride the wave of growth, but without a strategic plan, that wave could come crashing down. Here are some insights on how to fortify your business to support long-term sustained growth and strengthen your company from the inside out. And that starts with investing in your most valuable asset – your workforce.

Create a strong value proposition for your most valuable asset

With a flush job market giving employees unparalleled bargaining power, employees have come to know their worth – and demand compensation that reflects it. To add fuel to the fire, in the age of increasing transparency, colleagues are more apt to share and compare salary information, surfacing problematic – and perceived – inequities. Too often, this results in disgruntled employees as well as disgruntled – and contrite – employers.

Coinciding with the recent “quiet quitting” trend that has approximately 50% of employees disengaging from their work, fostering an inspiring, motivating, and fulfilled workforce culture and rewarding employees with compelling benefits has never been more critical.

  • Evaluate payroll structures. Assess and, if needed, recalibrate, based on market analysis and internal review, to ensure pay scales are competitive, equitable, and free of bias.
  • Be transparent about pay and performance. Develop and document clear performance standards to outline expectations, motivate employee development, incentivize growth, and create a mechanism to reward top performers for the value they provide to the organization. Along with the obvious benefits to employees, transparency affords companies an opportunity to review human resources policy, eradicate any inadvertent biases, and catalyze productive and open conversations with employees.
  • Look outside the pay raise. Consider compensation tools, including loyalty and performance bonuses, promotions, personal leave options, extended health benefits, education and training reimbursement.
  • Establish employee career paths. Help employees envision a future trajectory of growth for themselves at your company and show them you value their contributions and are invested in their development and success.
  • Offer growth opportunities. From professional development to apprenticeships and mentoring, help grow your employees – and fill skill gaps to grow your company.

Refine your hiring focus

From waves of layoffs to the employee-driven exodus of the “Great Resignation,” the job market has been defined by extremes in recent years. With more job openings than job seekers, employees currently hold the cards, but a recession could shift the power dynamic.

With today’s hypercompetitive market, even the most resource-heavy companies are taking a step back to pause and reevaluate their evolving needs and determine where to concentrate their job creation and staffing efforts.

  • Take inventory. Conduct a gap analysis to identify and prioritize resource issues to avoid repetition of gap and focus hiring efforts accordingly.
  • Rethink your sourcing strategies to expand and diversify your talent pool. Consider widening your geographic search by offering remote work options, exploring nontraditional staffing models like role-sharing, recruiting recent retirees, and enhancing employee benefits packages.
  • Reskill or upskill your current workforce. Fill roles internally – and provide current employees opportunity for career growth and skill development – through specialized training focused on critical skills acqusition.
  • Clarify your organization’s value proposition. Marketing goes beyond attracting customers. Evaluate your employer brand efforts to ensure the right message is getting out to the right candidates.

Embrace the new modern workplace

The pandemic spurred a tidal wave of remote work, ushering in a seismic shift in the way we work. While many are quite content with their new arrangements and in no hurry to switch back, others long for the camaraderie and social benefits found working alongside their colleagues in an office setting.

But as the pandemic recedes in the rearview mirror, more and more employers are activating return-to-office plans and instituting permanent hybrid workplaces. As employees head back into the office, many fast-growing companies are quickly realizing their former spaces are a lot more crowded and less functional than in the past.

As a growing business, you have enormous potential to craft a workplace that works for your employees. Instead of retrofitting your existing space, you have an opportunity to expand to a wholly reimagined space or thoughtfully supplement your existing location.

(For more information, please contact Ann Meade, Regional President, Webster Bank Commercial Banking,, 617-717-6832.)