January 22, 2013
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2. Hire key players.
The next step in creating a great workplace environment for your team is to hire the right team members.
A lot of small business owners follow the mantra, “Hire slowly, fire quickly,” and I agree. However, hiring and firing should be based more on an employee’s attitude, personality, and vision rather than just their skill set.
For example, if an applicant has a personality that matches your company’s vision and values, along with a positive, upbeat attitude, then he or she is more likely to stick to the company vision for success and follow the same path as everyone else you’ve hired.
3. Maintain the standard.
Once you have hired employees who fit your company culture based on attitude, personality and vision, it is up to you to keep their spirits up. As a small business owner, it’s easy to get sucked into a nearsighted staring contest with the bottom line.
Don’t get me wrong, you have to keep a vigilant eye on your cash flow in order to be successful, but at the end of the day, you also have to keep your employees happy. It’s a balancing act between the bottom line and employee satisfaction; focus too much on either one and neglect the other, and you will fail.
The secret to managing your budget while keeping your employees motivated and upbeat is that they each run on different fuel. Your bottom line runs on money and cost-effective strategies. Your employees don’t. It may seem like money is their primary motivator, and many of them may believe that money is the root of what they want. But in most cases, the thing your employees crave the most is feeling like smart, valued and important members of your team.
Have fun, and reward hard work in a creative way. If I slap a gold star sticker on an employee’s forehead, that employee is likely to get up and walk out. If I make it a priority to stand up in front of the entire team and say, “Look what Fred did. Without Fred’s hard-work, we would not have accomplished this. We’re a better company today because of Fred. Good Job Fred. You rock,” then not only does Fred know that I am unabashedly thankful for his work, but his teammates are likely to be motivated to work even harder too.
Remember that leadership defines culture, culture dictates customer service, and customer service determines longevity and growth. By defining and living your core values, hiring the right people, and reinvesting in your team emotionally, they’ll turn around and bring in more money for your bottom line.
In short, focus on the employees — and the rest will take care of itself.
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Nick Friedman is President and Co-Founder of College Hunks Hauling Junk and College Hunks Moving, the largest and fastest growing US-based junk removal and moving franchise opportunities. He started the business in college with his best friend in a beat up cargo van, and now has over 35 locations nationwide.
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