Hiring the right employees is just the beginning
When you’re the boss, there are dozens of different tasks and areas of business operation to think about each week, from marketing and sales through to product development, cashflow, accounting, customer service, and more. However, if you want your venture to keep growing and thriving, something you have to focus on is HR.
In particular, it’s vital to do all you can to create a happy workforce full of people who are committed, productive, and engaged. You want to retain your workers for as long as possible, so you keep all their knowledge and skills in-house and don’t have to keep training up new hires because of a high turnover rate.
When it comes to retention, lots of leaders think the main thing is regular promotions or giving employees big bonuses. However, this is inaccurate. In fact, according to information shared in a Gallup report, money isn’t the only thing people want — it’s not even at the top of the list for most employees.
Thank Staff Members
What doesn’t cost a thing but can have a huge impact? A thank you. Many workers are keen to know their efforts are noticed and appreciated by their managers. This means it’s important to regularly acknowledge what your staff members do for your company.
Wherever possible, thank people in person, one-to-one. This enables them to see just how genuine you are about noticing the contributions they make. If this isn’t possible, pick up the phone, write a handwritten note, or arrange a teleconference session. Emails are another option, but don’t have quite the same positive results as more personable choices. Other, more public acknowledgements include mentions in company newsletters, posts on social media pages or shout-outs at a conference or other event.
When you thank people, be specific with what you’re talking about. That is, don’t just thank them in general. It’s better to mention a particular task your employee did well or a situation where they excelled, so they know you’re really paying attention.
Employees also like to receive awards for a job well-done. There are different ways you can tackle awards, such as setting up a structured program (think Employee of the Month) or opting to reward employees with years of service awards, where those who have been with the company for a period of time are acknowledged. Alternatively, consider having a more laissez-faire awards set up, where you hand them out to people whenever you think the time is right.
Keep in mind that it’s always a good idea to have a physical award to hand people, which they can look at from time to time to remind themselves that their bosses appreciate their efforts. Purchase and engrave trophies or plaques, frame personalized certificates, or even go down a more lighthearted, humorous route by creating an award based around the business in some way (e.g. if your firm’s logo has a pineapple in it, you could hand out pineapple-shaped awards).
Utilize Perks and Rewards
Many workers are happy to receive free work perks from their employers, too. Don’t think that these options have to break your budget. You can provide perks such as more flexible working hours or locations or give people some extra paid time off. Alternatively, provide free meals in the office, bring in a masseuse as a treat or provide better parking options.
When it comes to rewards, there are ideas to suit all budgets. For example, consider hampers, movie tickets, bottles of wine, boxes of chocolates, flowers, pre-loaded gift cards, vouchers to stores or restaurants, books, handmade gifts etc. Whatever you choose, do try to find things that relate to the hobbies, lifestyle, and/or family status of workers, so they know you pay attention and understand who they are as people.
Give Employees Opportunities for Growth
Lastly, don’t underestimate the value of giving employees opportunities for growth. Staff members are sure to be interested in ways they can be supported to achieve their career goals. See if you can reward them with access to big industry events or attendance at the company conference. You could also organize for relevant special guests to come in and speak with them or tutor them on a particular subject they want to build skills in. Then again, you could set up in-house mentoring and/or training programs.
Written by: Tiffani Wroe, BOSS Contributor