Key Points for a Happy and Productive Team
“If you love your job, you’ll never have to work a day of your life” – various, unverified.
Managing to keep your valued staff happy will maximise their productivity, individually and as a team. Key factors are: trust, appreciation, fairness, consistency, flexibility, room to grow and time to listen.
Show that you trust your staff to do their jobs and allow them to take on more responsibility.
It’s all too easy to take people for granted then criticize when something goes wrong but what about when something goes right? Take a moment to thank people for another great day and reward those who exceed expectations.
Unless there is a justifiable reason for rules, treat them as guidelines. If back office staff has dubious but inoffensive fashion taste, does it affect their work rate or their colleagues? If a member of the team needs to work from home now and then or change the time that their day starts or ends, does it have any major consequences to the smooth running of the business?
Fairness and Consistency
In order to treat individuals fairly, you may not be able to treat them the same. Although this sounds contrary, it considers that people have different personalities and perhaps other commitments to take into account. For example, if you ask for a volunteer in respect of a new opportunity, the quiet ones may miss out to the extroverts or the person who has to arrange for cover may be unable to instantly commit.
Ensure that your equal opportunities and other practices are consistent and fair to all.
Room to Grow
Some employees will want to progress within their chosen career and will appreciate opportunities for self-improvement, training programmes and further education support. This will benefit your business but also make them more valuable to other companies, so be sure to nurture those whom you value.
Time to Listen
Have regular individual sessions with each employee to discuss their performance and, most importantly, to listen to their aspirations and any current requirements. If you agree a timetable for action and follow up, do not keep putting back the date!
Encourage all team members to approach you with their ideas and treat each idea with respect. You never know when there will be a little gem.
Further information: Grow Your Own Entrepreneurs