As a small business owner, you’re nothing without your employees. While you might be the brains behind your company, your employees are likely the face of it. They are your sales people, your brand ambassadors, your cheerleaders, and your biggest asset. Your employees simply shouldn’t be underestimated.
With so much weight resting on their shoulders, many business owners wonder, “How do I get the most out of my employees?” If you’re asking yourself the same question, you’ve come to the right place. Read on for our favorite tips when it comes to employees.
Build a Strong Team
The first step in having a strong roster of employees is simple: build a strong team. While it may be a cliche, it’s true that a team is no stronger than its weakest link. An employee with poor work ethic can frustrate hardworking team members, deter potential customers, and upset longtime clients.
That’s why it’s important to choose each and every one of your employees with care. Here are our tips for doing so:
- Send prospective hires through multiple rounds of interviews. They should not only interview with the hiring manager, but with you and with some of their stronger potential team mates. Afterwards, discuss the interview with all interviewees. Ask for their opinions before offering your own for an unbiased opinion. Finally, get everyone’s stamp of approval before moving forward.
- Prior to sending out an offer to a prospective hire, perform a thorough investigation of their background. Contact references, do a Google search, and perform an online background check to ensure that they are who they claim to be.
- Approach the first 90 days of employment as a trial period. If you find behavior that concerns you, address it directly. After 90 days of employment, re-evaluate whether you’ve made a strong choice.
Today’s workforce knows what they’re worth. Employees have a wealth of salary information and job options at their fingertips. Fair and competitive compensation will help you retain your best employees. If they aren’t being compensated fairly, they’ll know it, and they’ll be tempted to leave.
In order to make sure you’ve got a competitive compensation package:
- Perform regular research into industry standards for salary. If you find that you’ve fallen behind, adjust employee compensation accordingly. Make sure that your employees don’t just receive minimum wage, but a living wage that can offer them a good quality of life.
- Check in on what your competitors are offering in terms of benefits. That includes things like healthcare, paid time off, and more. An offering such as unlimited PTO can get you on the radar of a strong potential employee who may not even be actively seeking new employment.
- Considering offering more than just the standard benefits. The modern workplace offers flexible working hours, remote working options, gym memberships, free lunches, and other perks.
Keep Communication Open
While workplaces of old operated on a fairly strict hierarchy, today’s workplace brings the CEO down to the employee’s level. If you want to learn what you could be doing better when it comes to employment, there’s one place you should look: your own employees!
Foster an environment of open communication and feedback with the following:
- Establish an open-door policy in your workplace. Employees are welcome to approach management at any time, for any reason. Every employee is welcome to go to any manager for discussion or feedback, from their boss to their boss’s boss’s boss.
- Meet with employees one-on-one on a regular basis for an open discussion. You can discuss their career goals and path or listen to any feedback they may have. A one-on-one discussion won’t just provide you with valuable feedback; it will also help build a personal relationship with your employee.
- Perform regular, anonymous happiness surveys of your entire staff. You’ll likely find that employees have much more to say when their names aren’t attached. Look for commonalities in answers to find areas for improvement.
- Have an exit interview with every departing employee. Inquire about what they really liked about your workplace and what they really didn’t. An unhappy employee can be your best resource for improving your employment.