It’s widely accepted the most valuable asset of a company is its employees – yet treating staff well and getting the best from them can be a constant struggle for some firms.
If you feel you’re not always getting 100% from your team, below are a few tried and tested tips used by the pros to foster great employee spirit and loyalty. Best of all, most of these fixes are quick to implement and won’t break the bank.
Look at improving communication – particularly between staff and bosses
One of the most common complaints staff have in the workplace is not being entirely sure what’s expected of them, then finding they’ve underdelivered in some way. If your employees are to perform at their best, they must have a clear idea of what you want them to do – and when.
Likewise, explaining your firm’s goals and ethos to your team is a good way to foster a collective spirit with everyone working towards the same aims in the same way.
Offer in-house or external training to bring staff up to speed
All companies operate differently, so you shouldn’t just presume because a staff member has performed a similar role with a different firm, that they’ll automatically understand how you do things in your business. Instead, employee training is an ongoing process that will markedly improve your team’s skills and bring them all up to speed with your processes.
You should also think about offering external training at college, university, or online to diversify your employees’ talents, which might see you branching into different markets or offering new services.
Remember too that staff training is very much a two-way street – your staff will become better workers through their learning, thereby providing a better and more refined service to your firm while the staff member will also improve their individual skills. As an added bonus, offering training is another great way to show your staff you consider their career development important to improve their loyalty to your company.
Streamline your onboarding process to make sure staff have the skills from the start
Onboarding can be a very time-consuming process that many firms often overlook – yet it remains essential if your employees are to develop the skills they need from the start. These days, there are many ways to largely automate onboarding with bespoke software developed specifically for your company and its particular ways of working.
Recognize the value of your staff – and remember to show them too
Even if you already realize just how valuable your employees are, it’s not uncommon for bosses or company owners to be rather backward in coming forward when it comes to showing workers. Just a simple “thank you” or “well done” will go a long way to building morale in your team, but you should also think of other ways to reward particularly good work.
It’s important to remember; these rewards don’t necessarily have to be in the form of money or a pay rise (though neither will do any harm in helping employees feel valued). Alternative rewards might include offering workers time off for performing well or taking them to lunch when they complete a project. Anything that’s out of the ordinary and gives you the chance to show your staff you value them will work wonders.
Make sure you give balanced feedback to your team’s work
Positive feedback is important to build staff morale and engagement. Therefore, you should regularly give feedback to your employees and let them know you appreciate their endeavors. Also, while many companies think an end-of-year appraisal is enough, you should look to give your thoughts and comments much more regularly.
When it comes to negative feedback, be sure to keep your comments fair and balanced and, most crucially of all, encourage staff to tell you their side of the story.
You should also remember that feedback should be a two-way process and invite comments and ideas from your employees on how they think your firm could improve or change its working practices.
Give your staff the tools they need to do the job
Another extremely common complaint among disgruntled employees is the feeling that they don’t have access to the right tools to do their job. In today’s business world, which is now intrinsically reliant on computers and tech, this often amounts to staff using outdated software or hardware.
Whatever the reason your staff feel they don’t have the right equipment for their job, you need to address it quickly. Giving staff outdated tools will only serve to make them feel underappreciated and that they don’t matter – plus, it might even be dangerous in some circumstances.
The world of work is changing considerably. Through a process of the ongoing digitalization of the workplace coupled with the recent lockdowns caused by Coronavirus, staff now expect considerably more flexibility from their employers, including the option to remote work. As a result, if you’re to stand any chance of attracting and retaining the best employees in the future, you will likely need to adopt a much more flexible attitude to how, when, and where your team works.