Happy New Year! I hope that 2013 is a banner year for you. To kick off the year I thought I would touch upon some information I came across in an article on CEO.com – 8 Things Your Employees Need Most – From You. Feel free to read the full article, mine is definitely the cliff notes version.
- Targets: Goals are fun, and they are important. At the end of each year, Brett and I sit down with each employee and have them list out their top 3-5 goals for the year and then we discuss ways in which we can support them. Most are work related, but some are personal which is fine because happy employees make good employees! The important thing is to have targets to hit. Without a target there is no where to look and nothing to strive for, and that’s just not fun!
- 2. Freedom: Autonomy and latitude breeds innovation. Once you have laid out what is expected, let it happen without micro-managing the steps taken to get there. It can sometimes be hard to let go, but trust me once you do you will be amazed at the energy and innovation that can come from it.
- Mission: I used to think Missions were a bunch of bull because every company I worked for before did not live up to theirs. It just seemed to be a plaque on the wall that no one really followed. Now that we have one I can’t imagine life without it. Our mission is “to provide the perfect match between client needs, desires and wants with associate knowledge, skills and abilities.” What this does for us now is allows us to address even the toughest of challenges with “how does this fit into our mission”. We are not reactive anymore, and we are much calmer at handling issues because we all have one mission when it comes to work.
- Input: Everyone wants to know how they are doing. They want to be recognized for their contributions and also corrected when they do something that is different than what is expected. Remember to provide this input regularly throughout the year. It is so much easier to continue to move forward when you have that occasional pat on the back and input.
- Expectations: Every employee wants to know what is expected of them, and there is really no way to provide input if you don’t have expectations laid out. Lay out expectations for the year. These are different than goals/targets. Expectations are what you expect on a daily basis – ie: how certain things are handled, customer service scores, fill ratios, etc. The expectations are like a road map to the goals or targets.
- Consistency: Ever had a boss that was a jerk to some and sweet as pie to others? No one likes this. Be consistent in the way you manage. Don’t show favoritism or come down harder on managers than you do supervisors. Be consistent in your style and everyone will respect you more for it.
- Connection: Know your employees, their families, and what is going on with them. You don’t have to be their best bud, but you should show that you care about them. Let them know a little about you as well. People enjoy their work if they enjoy the people they work with and for; the only want to enjoy someone’s company is by getting to know them. Encourage connection between employees and look for ways to connect with them.
- Future: Do your part to make sure your employees have the chance to grow. They may not be able to grow within, but if you do your part to help them grow it will go a long way. I look for classes, associations, and other venues that my staff can take advantage of to help them grow professionally and personally. I realize that I am investing in things that may take them away from Part-Time Pros, but that’s ok. If there are chances to promote employees within that deserve it, I will do it. But if there is not, I am not going to hold them back. I will do my part to make sure their future is bright, whether it be within the walls of Part-Time Pros or outside.
Cheers to a prosperous 2013!