Ever heard that your employees are your greatest asset? It’s a popular belief because it’s completely true. You want a high-performing, goal-smashing company? You are going to need high-performing, goal-smashing employees. And you might find that you have actually done pretty well by hiring the team you have. Are they hardworking? Focused? Dedicated? Do they laugh and have fun in the office? If you can answer yes to all these questions and your profit margins reflect the productive and happy environment you and your staff have created, then you are nailing it. But will they stay that way forever? You really need them to but it is inevitable that challenges will eventually arise. That your staff will succumb to pressure and their glow will dim. But it is up to you to keep their spirits up.
You need to ascertain what it is that makes this unique group of people tick, both as a team and as individuals. Everyone will be driven by different aspects of the job. But you must make sure that each of them is armed with all the information about the company. This is because you cannot know for certain what makes each of them tick. For instance, one employee might feel a surge in motivation if they truly understand why they do what they do and how important they are, whereas another might be motivated by a bonus cheque. Many employers think that money is the ultimate motivator but this is untrue. Money doesn’t appeal to every single person. Someone who is driven by feeling passionate about doing important work or satisfying client’s expectations won’t leave if they’re unsatisfied with their daily grind but they’re receiving a good salary. but they won’t be working at optimum either.
So, the onus is on you, the employer, to figure out how to keep them all pumped up. And when things hit a slump, you need to start a spark. This may even mean that you find a couple of staff members who will act as your vibe drivers. These guys will be there to get the party started, so to speak. They will bring positive energy, create laughs and spread energy. You need to choose wisely though. If you don’t feel you have a strong enough personality in your group currently, then you must simply take this on yourself.
Pay attention to each of them
This does not mean that you spend your days in deep and meaningful conversations with each of your staff members. But try to find out something about them that matters the most to them. Perhaps your sales manager is engaged and in the throes of planning a wedding or your tea lady has just had her mom move in with her – these little snippets of their life outside of work matter too. Enquire about these. By keeping up this type of quick conversation you will encourage them to open up to you a little and you will let go of any negative perceptions they might have. You’ll probably find they open up about other things on their mind and this makes them feel easier about talking to you about work concerns. These chats must happen at the water cooler or while making coffee, this will ensure they are kept short and relaxed. Calling an employee into your office is only going to make them feel under pressure and anxious.
Explain how their job impacts the company
This is vital to creating a happy, driven employee. A job description outlines the expectations of the role they fulfill. But many employees are acutely aware of the fact that no one is irreplaceable. Which means that, if you value them, you need to explain to them just how much. Whether you do this in a review or in an informal chat, make sure you tell your staff members why what they bring to the table matters so much. How they can continue to positively impact the company and make sure they know why they were employed for the role. There were obviously other candidates but you chose them specifically, let them know why. This will help them feel validated, proud of their work and they will inevitably strive to do more and do better. There is immense job satisfaction in knowing that you, as an employee, are completely relevant.
Give them learning opportunities
Your employees want to succeed. This is a personal thing for each of them but they can use their time at your company to really develop their skillset. And, you should encourage this. If you assist your staff members with achieving more as an individual, you will end up with a loyal employee who is highly skilled and grateful. Consider upskilling your staff as an investment. If you do it on a larger scale you can even turn to the government for assistance in the form of a subsidy. Consider your most junior employees and specifically those who don’t have high level tertiary education. You might take a junior representative and send them on sales and marketing courses, if they excel you could end up with your future marketing manager or even communications director. Investing in your people is one of the most strategic moves you can do as a business owner. You can start small. Send everyone (who wants to join) on a public speaking course or a short computer skills course. Those who flourish through learning and show themselves will likely lap up any learning opportunity you give them. And these guys are the future of your high performing business.