How to get the Most out of your Staff
There are a few simple things you can do to get the best out of your employees. By implementing just a few of these tactics your staff will see their job as more than just another pay-check. Their morale will be boosted, they will feel like they are truly valued and integral to your business, thereby enhancing loyalty and they will enjoy a sense of accomplishment which will in turn incentivise them to do the best they can.
Offer incentives for excellent work
Acknowledge your employees when they do well. Too many bosses have a tendency to use negative reinforcement methods, by only focusing on the mistakes staff make and other negatives. A few words of positive verbal recognition when they go above and beyond can make a world of difference in an employee’s mind and help foster loyalty and continued hard work.
Don’t let employees get stuck in a rut, keep the work interesting
If a person does the same task day in day out it will become repetitive and the employee can become unfocused and bored. If you know they have the ability to take on different tasks, or, would flourish by taking on more responsibility then offer them the choice if it is viable. It will show you value their input and wish to encourage their career advancement.
Engage with your staff
Get to know your staff, but, remain professional, don’t get too personal (consider your workplace culture when opening a dialogue). By inquiring as to what their interests are, their intended career goals, their work experience and other things important to them you will show them they are important to your business which will boost their morale. It will also help you get an idea about their frame of mind which may help you anticipate their responses to work issues and avoid any surprises down the line, as well as, figuring out whether they would be suitable for career advancement into other areas of your business later on.
Run training and development
Invest in your employees. Keep the big picture in mind and understand that an initial monetary investment in your staff will provide a greater return on investment in the future. Training and development shows you value them as an employee, that you are serious about their job stability and long-term career advancement within your business.
Share responsibility widely
If you, or, your managers are swamped with work, or, would simply appreciate being freed up to focus on more pressing matters then why not share the day-to-day management duties around to competent staff members. Why not let them take on some more responsibility such as goal setting, scheduling, planning and inter-department communication. If they do well they could be a shoe-in when you, or, your manager is away, or, at least give you some breathing room on hectic days.
Keep your ears open
Listening to your staff builds trust and helps you identify areas of staff satisfaction and dissatisfaction. It is so simple an act and will go a long way to resolving issues as they arise and keeping your staff happy and performing at their best.
Don’t let one bad apple spoil the whole barrel. If you have a slack employee who lets others carry their weight then address the issue. Hold regular meetings to ward off any problems before they become a major distraction by disrupting your employees’ positive work habits.
Communicate, communicate and communicate!
Make sure your staff know what is going on. If anything in your business is happening, or, is likely to happen that will affect their jobs, career advancement possibilities, day to day tasks, or, even if you have some positive client feedback for them, simply let them know and keep an open dialogue. Staff feel insecure and anxious when they are kept in the dark, letting them know about things which affect their performance will show you respect them and they are valued.
Address performance problems quickly and directly
Don’t let bad habits gain traction and allow problems to fester. Nip any staff performance problems in the bud with a frank, one-on-one discussion with the employee in question. Be firm, but fair. By letting a poor work ethic continue you will demoralise your other employees who will begin to question your leadership.
If they are capable allow employees to be problem solvers
Brainstorming solutions will often yield far better results than trying to fix everything on your own. By letting your staff put their two cents in they will feel their opinion is worth something. You still retain final decision, but, at least you will know you’ve considered all the options.