Any good boss understands the value of relating to and connecting with their employees. Doing so can be trickier than one may expect, however.

Successful companies rely on inspired, dedicated employees willing to put their best foot forward at all times. The best way to evoke this spark of effort is genuine connection. Building relationships and strong bonds between you and your team members leads to a mutual sense of trust, and thus a willingness to help one another. In fact, the want to connect is human nature.

Treat all of your employees equally. This should go without saying, but putting your staff members first regardless of position shows that you value each and every one of them. Nearly everybody in the business world wants to be recognized for their efforts, and giving them this recognition displays respect. Whether it is their accomplishments, personal time, or opinions, all of your employees should share a sense of respect for one another.

Treating your team with respect and fairness also creates a comfortable environment for them, which can go a long way. Managers or business leaders who come off as intimidating, harsh, or simply unruly can cause tension among their employees. A fearful worker is one who may avoid speaking out, searching for innovative ideas, or interacting with others at all. To counter this, encourage employees to share unique thoughts and ideas, and be truthful in your responses. A genuine interest in what it is they have to say will make employees more comfortable in their work environment.

Similarly, open communication is vital in building strong, professional relationships. Share information about the company with your employees. Keeping details in the dark or withholding anything that pertains to the company and its employees can prove troublesome in the long run. Talk about the ins and outs of your business in an open discussion forum. Understanding everything they must know will lead to more employee engagement and effort.

Break down the traditional walls of business. We are living in world where old, outdated business models are frowned upon. Flexibility and the well being of employees have now become necessities for success. Offer perks like the ability to work from home and more flexible paid time off. Giving your employees the power to do their own jobs leads to them being more successful more often than not.

Connecting with your employees has become easier than ever with modern day business models and tactics. The trick is ensuring your company is up to speed. Once you have the strategies set in place to benefit your employees, success will almost always follow, and those working for you will appreciate the time and effort you’ve put into making their work lives more enjoyable.