Whether you’re just starting out in business or 10 years in, one of the most common struggles shared by all Arizona business owners is getting your employees to care about your business the way you do. Sales are a direct reflection on how engaged your employees are with what is going on in your company. Team building means better performance equals better sales which equates to a happier you.
But how do we get employees to perform better? How do we get them to care? How do we get them to give 100% every single day they show up for work? We’ve listed five ways to get your staff to care about your business and increase engagement
1. Change Your Company Lingo
Sounds silly right, but by referring to your staff as associates, team members, family, partners etc. it speaks to them on a more emotional level. You change how they feel about themselves at your company, it makes them feel like they are a part of something. At our company, Cobb CPA, we refer to our staff as team members.
Your family is a part of something greater than one person, team members are a part of something more than themselves. Changing the way you refer to your staff changes the way they view their position at your company. It’s a psychological and emotional base but it is the first step in getting them to feel like equals instead of just an average employee.
2. Put Them First
You know that saying, “Customer is always right,” well if we’re being frank, your associates hate when you say that and hate when you make them feel that way. Yes your customers are valuable, after all they’re the reason you have a business in the first place. However, if you don’t have happy employees you don’t have happy customers which will affect your bottom line. We suggest adopting the Southwest Airlines policy, “We believe that if we treat our employee’s right they will treat our customers right, and in turn that results in increased business and profits that make everyone happy.”
You can do this by not allowing irate customers to walk all over your employees, allow your employees to pass off a customer who is being too demanding or rude. If you give out discounts or coupons at your company, don’t make them more than what you offer your associates. Simple actions that make your team feel more valued.
3. Perks. Benefits. Rewards
Briefly mentioned above we talked about discounts, that is what we mean in this section. Yes, good health benefits go a long way and will have people coveting for a position at your company if you offer good benefits but we’re talking a few notches below that. LuLu Lemon is a high end athletic brand that believes in promoting a healthy and active lifestyle. Part time and full time employees receive a monthly allowance to attend any fitness classes, this gesture proves that LuLu’s is not only talking the talk but they’re walking it too.
Offer your employees incentives that you don’t have to, offer them special discounts, reward them to lunch after a good performance or once they reach a certain goal. Or, just treat them to something special just because. These team building actions make your employees want to continue to work hard for you because they feel like you truly value and care about them.
4. Praise Your Associates
This section compliments section 3, praising your staff also makes them feel like they are valued and that you care. Acknowledge the little victories and the big victories. Invest in their daily work, we’re not saying micro-manage, but you can invest in their daily work by asking them if they need help finishing a project. Have a billboard up in the office that praises an employee of the month. Have an anonymous compliment jar that is read aloud every so often. These are little actions that go a long way towards team building!
5. Ask their opinion?
One final thing, ask their opinion! If your serious about team building, ask the staff that works directly with your customer what you need to know to improve as a company. Ask them if they like option A over option B, ask them if they prefer casual Friday or casual everyday (if possible) all of these actions make your associates feel like what they say matters. Trust us, if they feel like they matter they’re going to give you a top notch performance day in and day out.
These actions seem very simple but you’d be surprised how many Arizona business owners let the importance of their company culture fall to the back burner. If you’re just starting out you’re in luck, start implementing great company culture practices right away. That way from day one your company culture is established and will only need minimal tweaking in the future as things progress. If you’re a few years into business it can be difficult to change company culture, when people are stuck in their ways it is hard for them to make a change. Don’t let that stop you, start with you higher ups and then work your way down the chain with letting everyone know change is coming. Unfortunately, you may have to let some people go if they don’t want to fall in line with the new and improved company culture, it can be difficult to move forward but we promise an increased bottom line if you make this shift.
Happy Team Building!
Request a Discovery Call with us to learn about holding a Planning Day with you and your team. Together, we’ll create a 12 month action plan covering this topic and many others to help your business move forward!