The extent to which an individual believes in themselves plays an important role in the workplace — especially when it comes to performing new tasks, learning, productivity and more. Self-efficacy can formally be defined as an individual’s belief in their capacity to execute behaviors necessary to produce specific performance attainments. Confidence reflects in an employee’s belief to get things done, feel motivated or to make decisions that will positively impact performance. It’s a crucial mindset that ties directly to quality of work at an individual level.
- Self-efficacy in the workplace can lower anxiety and help people better cope with stress.
- Self-efficacy is a crucial mindset that ties directly to quality of work at an individual level.
- Professional development, role models and recognition can increase self-efficacy at work.
Why self-efficacy matters for employees
Feeling self-efficacious has such a strong impact on how people feel and function because it promotes positive thoughts about themselves — it contributes to an internal sense of strength and competence. It’s also a key piece to remote work. Recent Forrester research revealed that self-efficacy and organizational efficacy are two cultural factors that contribute positively to “anywhere” work.
Working toward bolstering confidence in one’s abilities to meet challenges, both in and out of work, is psychologically important to ensuring that employees feel good, strong, capable, less anxious — and that they can move forward in life. Self-efficacy in the workplace is one of many experience activators to improve employee experience — all are powerful and uniquely important.
How to increase self-efficacy in the workplace
1. Invest in training and professional development
Learning and development is a great first step to investing in employee self-efficacy. A positive organizational culture that promotes individual growth — both in and out of work — shows you’re invested in employees for the long term and enhances self-efficacy. Whether it’s career training certificates, school, career development or cross-functional training, offer side projects and opportunities rooted in education and growth.
2. Be a role model or mentor
Role models are people others look to as an example — and they play a vital role in building self-efficacy. Managers are one of the strongest drivers of employee well-being and engagement, making them important role models or mentors to employees. People look up to others for inspiration, guidance and to learn. If employees learn from leaders who are efficient, confident or positive, they’re likely to reflect the same positive energy.
3. Set the right strategies
It’s important for employees to have a healthy belief in one’s abilities, limiting self-doubt and boosting self-worth. This also comes into play when setting goals and evaluating performance. Help employees set a few short-term goals that feel achievable. Small wins can make a big impact on self-belief as mastery builds confidence. From there, employees can create a manageable roadmap to bigger goals directly tied to the business goals.
4. Recognize employees
Appropriate praise for a job well done provides employee care, makes them feel valued and can also motivate performance. Consider public recognition such as a mention in a team meeting, a post in your company’s EX program or even a simple thank you directly to the individual. There are many ways to show employee appreciation and recognition but the key is to make it meaningful.
Want to learn more about experience activators? Check out the other elements for a positive employee experience.