The biggest asset and challenge for many companies are their people. How do you treat and maintain your employees?
Work culture is important, even though it isn’t evident on financial statements. Most people do not leave because of the companies, but because of unfavorable situations or managers. See tips below on how to show your employees you value them and create a healthy work culture at your company.
Know what they like and what they don’t
Pay attention to what your employees care about. What do they not care about? See if the things they care about are something that the company is seeing business wide. For example, lack of conference rooms or long work schedules could upset employees. Or is it specific tasks like lack of encouragement that they don’t like? If you are able to recognize and understand their needs, employees are more likely to be committed and productive.
Set the Tone
It is important to lead by example and set the tone you want your business to have. Set a tone that will create loyalty and longevity. Do you laugh a lot, do you allow dogs in the office, do complete tasks in a timely manner?
Share your Ideas
Let your staff know about the company’s mission and your personal dream for the business. If you encourage your staff to become part of your mission, they will learn why their job matters. It is important to give your staff a sense of purpose and explain how their hard work affects the company. Show them where they fit in the business plan and strategy.
Make sure to provide constant training to employees. Have onboarding processes in place as well as continuing education. It is important that employees feel equipped to take on their roles so they can work toward success. Have an existing employee take on a training role and eliminate the need for an outside trainer. By having a current employee train new employees, he or she can educate on institutional knowledge and culture that an external trainer may not know. Have current employees train new hires on the culture, process and how they fit in the mission.
Create careers and not just jobs for your employees. Let employees be multifaceted in your business. Instead of just working the front desk, find out what their interests are and let them contribute to other parts of the company. For example, do they have interests in social media, networking, design or accounting? Allowing employees to explore new areas of the company may help you fill other open positions.
In order to retain talent, you must be willing to provide a competitive salary. If a potential new hire has a salary in mind that is higher than your budget, share that. Find other ways to compensate employees – either with paid time off, casual work office or free lunches.
In addition to sharing your dreams and mission, be transparent with your organization on financials, culture and more. Also, be clear about what your expectations are for a role. Most people will respect the transparency.
Let employees know you want and appreciate their feedback. Employees are often closest to the customers so they possess data that you may not see on a daily basis. Encourage healthy debate on project plans and people might feel more open to speak out when they don’t understand or do not agree.
Employees who feel valued and appreciated by their leaders are more likely to care more about the company and their roles. Without a healthy work culture, companies will have trouble retaining talent. Show your employees you value them and they will be happier, more engaged in their roles, and more productive for your business.
Lexy Garrett is a marketing manager at Sageworks, a financial information company that provides financial analysis and cash flow applications to business owners and their accountants.
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