Beating the labour shortage, and getting profitable
Written on the 21 August 2008 by Altitude Communications
Key tips for getting, keeping and motivating staff members for maximum profitability...
Smart and successful entrepreneurs realised a long time ago that their most valuable asset is in fact their staff. Those hard working team members that help them to pull their vision together and service their customers to the best of their ability. Other businesses, however, experience high staff turnover, losses in productivity and a bad reputation among both staff and customers. So, how do you inspire and motivate a team that works hard, shares your goals and vision, and helps to grow your business and its success?
Retaining a committed staff, whether there is just one single team member or a team of one hundred, is crucial to productivity. This is because it costs time and therefore money in training each time you employ someone new. A high turnover can cost you thousands of dollars in lost productivity. But it’s even worse if poor performing team members stick around – they could ruin your reputation and lose you customers! Negatives aside, it’s actually a huge bonus to have a team that is as committed to your business as you are. They perform better, provide better customer service, motivate one another and can even provide inspiration and ideas for business improvement and growth. It makes sense to spend money and time in ensuring your team is one you can be proud of.
So, the next question is how to go about ensuring you do have a high performing and motivated team. The first step would be when you are hiring your team members. Obviously, experience and qualifications specific to the job are essential, but remember that a lot of aspects to a job can be learned. As long as the person you hire is enthusiastic, motivated, has the right attitude and shares your vision, they will learn fast and will be far more valuable to you than someone who is more qualified and experienced, yet lacks passion for their work or your business.
Once you have got the right people on the bus, you need to make them want to stay with you. There are a number of ways to do this, and recent surveys have proven that remuneration is just one of the aspects of a job that motivates employees. So, while it’s always important to offer a competitive package to retain the right people, there are other aspects to a person’s job that are far more important and should not be overlooked.
People want to feel that their work is valued and appreciated. Take the time to give them recognition and praise for a job well done, and encouragement when they are still learning. Make sure you communicate clearly and be involved in their work. Offer opportunities for learning and advancement in their career.
Make the time to meet with each of your staff members individually on a regular basis to talk with them about their work, any concerns they may have and what you can do to help them enjoy their work and help them perform better. If your staff is too large to meet with them all personally, then make it part of a manager’s job description.
Make every effort to ensure your team work in a comfortable and safe working environment, that is, one that is free of bullying and harassment of any nature or description. Put in place measures to protect team members from these conditions and a procedure if a complaint is made. Lead by example, and treat each and every one of your team members as you would a respected family member.
Why not introduce some social aspects to the workplace that your staff can look forward to, such as team building events, BBQ days, Friday drinks, etc. This demonstrates that you really care for them, and if they work in an environment that is inspiring, interesting and in which they feel safe and appreciated, they are bound to want to stick around.
Copyright Altitude Communications 2008. All Rights Reserved.
This article may not be used without the prior written consent from the author. Altitude Communications'
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