Posts Tagged staffing

Gaining employee commitment in tough times

Businesses in today’s turbulent economic climate need to frequently ask themselves whether any member of their team is likely to jump ship and if so, what are they going to do about it?

Employees can become frustrated if they are not sure what’s expected of them and good employers will invest time into making their staff understand their role within the organisation. You need to confidently communicate with employees and ask them what they need you to provide for them to enable them to outperform. Create urgency to get enhanced cooperation especially if they are long-serving employees who have become a bit lax.

Employers should involve staff and not just throw figures at them, explain your reasoning with stories which are memorable. Listening to staff feedback gives them ownership. Staff views should be solicited while the plans are still in development, not when it’s too late to have an impact.

If you have latent untapped potential in your staff how do you release that? It’s about having one to one meetings and then allowing them the freedom to run with an idea. In order to instigate change, 30% of your staff need to go beyond their normal course of duty.

Trust is an important factor between you and your staff. When you hold meetings you should welcome back-lash, otherwise meetings are just full of passive buy-in. If people are reactive and passionate, at least you’re getting a response.

Otherwise, all the strategies in the world are pointless without the tactics of engaging staff.

This article was taken from a discussion at a Business Exposure Group event


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Do you have the confidence to allow your business to flourish?

Business owners commonly find themselves unable to delegate tasks because of the illusion that they are the only ones who can do the job properly. But if SMEs are to succeed in the long-term, entrepreneurs need to occasionally take a back step to allow their employees to drive business forward.

Business owners should prevent themselves from falling into the trap of micro-managing every aspect of their organisation. Staff should be allowed to flourish and get on with it.

Because if you check everything your employees do before long they will be less careful and you have given yourself another job.

Entrepreneurs need to consider how it would feel if every time they did something, it was pulled to bits by the boss.

Dispose of the tasks you don’t want to do by outsourcing non-key resources such as health and safety, administrative roles or accountancy. Also, hiring a good office manager can take away a large part of the burden, you can specialise on strategy and the important issues affecting your business .

The key is managing by exception rather than managing everything.

Build a system whereby you can spot check, but do not interfere with simple processes.

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Techniques to control sales staff and make them accountable

Sales staff are a necessary component to all businesses and can influence whether your
business succeeds or fails.

If you’re considering taking on additional sales staff to help push your products or
services, there are important factors to bear in mind to ensure they bring value to your business.

When looking for sales staff, it’s important not to recruit in your own image. This
basically means employ people who use a different way of doing things and a different approach, so that they can complement your business offering.

It’s a good idea to use a professional recruiter to find sales staff because they can sift
through the good, bad and mediocre candidates more skilfully and effectively than you can and bring quality people to the table.

Many business owners simply think to themselves ‘this person’s in sales, I’ll try them out’ which can be an expensive process if it repeatedly fails. We should never take on people just because they have come to us with a sales background, it’s worth spending time and money on getting the right people in the first place and maximising your chance of success.

In any sales department, there needs to be a strong reporting infrastructure so the managing director fully understands what the sales staff are doing on a daily basis.
Sales should be about going and getting sales and maximising the opportunity, once you have got past the gatekeeper.

Owners of businesses should ask themselves when they last spent a day with their sales
force making calls. It’s impossible to set sales targets if you don’t understand the issues they are up against.

Overall you need to be more hands on and create realistic targets which people can achieve – so they are motivated.

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How does your business run when you’re away?

Many business owners deny themselves an annual holiday because they simply won’t risk leaving the company in another person’s hands.
For those who are brave enough to go away, the majority spend the week fretting about what is happening back in the office.

The problem usually stems from the owner being the only person in the firm who knows how to run the business effectively because all the information is all stored in his/her head. If this continues to be the case, the business owner is never going to truly switch off when he’s away.

To build a scalable business, you need to put the correct systems in place for when you are not there and this means sharing responsibility as well as your intricate knowledge on how to run your business.

Businesses should create an operations manual which is regularly updated. The bigger the business, the more in-depth the systems.
People need clear job descriptions and firm direction on how you want your business to operate.

Stop reinventing the wheel. Make sure procedures are correct rather than constantly changing them.

Establish where you want to be in three years time – do you want to have six, 12 or 1,000 employees?

This will help you steer your business in the right direction and help you set achievable goals.

The content in this article was taken from a discussion at a recent Business Exposure Group forum.

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Salary Reviews, Are you paying out too much?

We discussed the subject of salaries at a recent Business Exposure Group meeting and received some interesting feedback…
There were numerous responses from what was a very good cross-section of both traditional and service-led business owners.

Here are some of the comments…

“Salaries should match inflation”
“No salary increases, but bonuses would be better”
“We can’t give pay rises this year because of business uncertainty”
“I only give a wage increase if someone asks”
“Increases cannot be across the board, but we’ll look at specific individuals”
“The market is dictating a 10% increase”

Please let us know your opinion.What answers are you giving your staff at the moment?

How is that affecting your recruitment programme?

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