It is pertinent for organisations to pay attention to the selection, retention, and management of their employees to ensure optimum performance. The first thing we must realise is that while motivating the employees is very important, it is not the only way of maximising the employee’s potential.

Keeping employees motivated is very important and can be done in different ways, it can begin from salaries and benefits to recognising their efforts, simply trusting them or even just having an open-door policy. However, how do you maximise the potential of your employee to the point where all you need to do is motivate them enough to stay on a steady projectile?

Maximising employee’s potential can work in different ways, this is largely because every single individual is different, though there are some generic ways of maximising your employee’s potential, the first and most important step is getting to know your employee as an individual. Learn what makes them tick, what excites them, what are their strengths, what makes them happy, what drives them, what are their passions? It is by knowing this that you learn their potential and discover how to drive this potential.

Now, you know who they are and who they can be and what they can achieve, how do you drive them to achieve this potential and move the organisation forward;

Active listening: One of the surest ways of improving and maximising your employee’s potential is by actively listening to them. This works across board and for everyone. When individuals feel like they are being heard, by taking their input, they feel like they are involved in something bigger than them. When employees see their ideas and innovations coming into play or even being considered, it puts them in a healthy space where they want to learn more and add more to the organisation i.e. they strive to do better for themselves and for the organisation.

A growth environment: We are in an environment where there are set templates and how the organisation “typically” operates. This in itself puts people in “boxes”, everything must be done a certain way, making humans into robots, this kills innovation and in time becomes boring, there is no room for growth. In most organisations these templates are set to reduce margins for error. A growth environment gives employees space to try new things, be innovative, and grow. Sometimes, it is a hit or miss, however, other times it is a hit (some misses may be too costly, so it is in our best interest to watch the growth environment). In creating a growth and learning environment is important to remember that when there are errors, we learn from them and not go back to them. When you trust employees enough to let them create and innovate, they are constantly in a space when they grow, try new things and are constantly breaking bounds.

Responsibility and Accountability: Responsibility is one of the ways of maximising your employee’s potential, it drives them to rise to the challenge. It is important to give them a project or a task that is not excessively hard or one that is excessively easy. From your knowledge of your employee, if you are trying this for the first time, give them a task that takes them out of their comfort zone and into their stretch zone, but not something that spreads them too thin. This makes the employees realise that they are capable of more than they know and makes them more open to growth.

Promote independence: Teamwork, collaboration and corporation are very important in every workspace; however, a bit of independence is important and necessary in maximising employee’s potential. While working with guidance from management and as a part of a team, employees have a support network that assist them, working independently help employees learn how to be efficient, productivity and effective on their own. It makes the employee recognise their potential outside of management and the team, helps them recognise their strengths and weakness and their personal abilities, personal victories and achievements.

Mentorship and collaboration: As an employer, it is important to lead by example, to maximise your own potential and be constantly in your growth zone to help your employees maximise their own potential. It is important to collaborate, make them realise that you are constantly ready to help and collaborate with them.

Communicate the goals: In order to maximise the employee’s potential, you must properly communicate the goals of the organisation and the importance of their contributions towards the organisation achieving its own goal. The endgame and result help employees strive to play their own part in the success of the organisation.


It is important to know your employees and what works for them. This list of how to maximise the potential of employees is extensive, however, the most important aspects for maximising employee’s potential have been taken into cognisance here. As a manager or member of senior management in an organisation, it is our responsibility to maximise our own potential and the potential of others.


  1. how-to-maximize-employee-potential/


Wede Omu,

Research, Learning, and Development

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