Your Most Valuable Asset

Who was it that said businesses don’t succeed, people do!! We all know how important people are in our respective businesses but how much time do we spend really trying to engage and motivate those around us. If we do the results will be self evident in better performance, less absence, less stress, more commitment etc., etc.

We live busy lives with constantly changing “events” that happen such as marriage, children, divorce, debt, retirement, illness, bereavement, promotion and too many other things to list. If you can make small adjustments to support and help your staff with these events, how grateful would they be? Employee assistance programmes used to be the preserve of the multi nationals but now there are plenty of schemes around to help smaller businesses with a range of services.

Often a thank you is more powerful than you think if it is well meant and timely, the automated email on every Friday afternoon saying well done everyone probably didn’t have the deserved effect.

Clearly there has to be an organisation structure in place and clear division of roles/responsibilities in a business. You have to have some metrics in place as well, otherwise how do you judge anything if there are no key performance indicators?

The vision and strategy has to be right otherwise there is no alignment of thinking or “buy in” from anyone. Culture and values are important if you are truly going to succeed. (Franchise forums can be very helpful here and there is nothing more powerful than a franchisee informing other franchisees about good practice since they will listen to their peers!!!).

Things do go wrong so you need performance management systems to coach, mentor and develop people, and to manage departures in a sensitive and legal manner!!!

The pay and reward systems need to be clear, fair and understood – too complicated will lead to divisions and too many “us” and “them” destructive conversations. You only want powerful conversations in your business, the wrong comment can so easily break rapport built up over many months.

All the risk stuff has to be taken care of so contracts and documents need to be in place – the naïve employer can pay a lot of compensation for getting it wrong!!

Most importantly you need to nurture and develop talent – The art of a good leader depends on many things but getting the right people doing the right job and getting the best out of them is a true skill.

Franchisors need to spend more time with their networks to get this message across. There are many creative ways to look at remuneration and benefit packages, support and training are key motivators and the use of status indicators and share schemes in businesses can be powerful tools to motivate and reward.

So in summary, employee engagement leads to increased organisation performance, lower costs and higher outputs leading to a better business. Make sure you think more about it.