If your business is growing and expanding, the chances are that you have started to take on staff and build a team. These are exciting times and a strong team can make a real difference to the success of your business. However, if this is all relatively new to you, it can be a little daunting to have responsibility for a workforce. That is why today we are sharing with you five ways to look after your employees, a few tips and suggestions to ensure that you have a happy team.
Meet their basic needs
Before you even begin thinking about training and motivating your new team, you need to ensure that you meet their basic needs.
Think about their work conditions first. Is there a clean bathroom and kitchen to use? Is there all day access to refreshments? Are the premises fresh and inviting? You will want to tick these things off before you begin to bring people into your team, so do ensure that you have the basics covered.
Beyond that, you need to ensure that everyone is safe at work, so do carry out risk assessments for everyone and make sure that they are equipped with any necessary tools and possibly a uniform, such as personalised hoodies, to protect their own clothing.
Now that you are confident that your team is working in a safe environment, you can concentrate on making it a positive and welcoming place to work.
This can be a great project to get your team involved with, as they are likely to come up with some useful contributions. The kind of things worth considering are creating more natural light, brightening up the walls, replacing any tattered flooring and giving everyone their own workstation.
With these things in place, you might like to add plants or fresh flowers, background music if possible, and then the best equipment that you can afford. This is useful to do as it should help to make your team more productive and less frustrated than if they are using poor tools.
Deliver training and coaching consistently
Most people want to do a good job at work. They want to leave at the end of the day feeling satisfied that they achieved something. As such, they need training.
As soon as a new team member comes on board, set them up with a training programme and wherever possible, follow that up by buddying them up with someone. This should help them to build relationships in those early weeks and give them the skills that they need to carry out their work.
All training should always be followed up with coaching. This is a way for you to see the skills learned in training being used in real life situations and it is an opportunity for you to offer feedback. You might be able to improve their skills and you should have the chance to praise them for everything that they are doing well.
Keep those communication lines open
You should work to cultivate an open and friendly workplace where communication is key. Aim to regularly update your team on the business’ progress and any targets that you are hoping to achieve. Getting everyone involved in this way will help to engage and motivate them and it ensures that they feel like valued team members.
Along with boosting morale, effective and open communication should also see your business improve. Your employees are often best placed to come up with fresh ideas to help you to grow your business, so encourage them to share any ideas with you and then you can work with them to take them forward.
Reward and recognise regularly
Finally, a reminder that you need to find opportunities to reward and recognise team members on a regular basis.
When your team does a good job, then tell them and thank them. If you spot someone trying to put into place the training that they have just undertaken, praise them and give them some positive and useful feedback. You will find that you need to make it a habit to look for chances to do this every day and it will soon become second nature to do so.
You might also want to reward your team when, for example, you achieve certain targets or get some great customer feedback. You might want to give people longer lunch breaks, buy breakfast for everyone or give an extra day off. You might also want to look at putting a formal reward scheme in place, such as a bonus structure, if you feel that it would work fairly within your business.