Keeping employees motivated and hard-working can often be a daunting task. However, if you are a business owner struggling to keep your team members interested, this question is for you! A reader sent this in just a few days ago and I wanted to hurry and respond, because I think it’s pretty important!
Here is the question:
“My name is Amelia, and I own a small housekeeping company. We actually work mostly with commercial businesses, but we do some smaller projects on homes here and there as well. My question is, how can I keep my employees motivated? They often seem to not care about their quality of work and that reflects poorly on the business. I’m wondering if you have any tips for keeping them interested in what’s best for the company and working hard?”
Amelia, you are not alone in this struggle! Lots of business owners face the task of trying to keep employees motivated. This is true for big businesses, as well as small. However, as a small business, you do have the upper-hand when it comes to building solid relationships with your employees and having a mutual respect and trust. It’s true that your employees won’t be as dedicated as you are to your business, because they aren’t the owner. However, there’s no reason they can’t be equally as excited and invested as you are. Here are some ideas on ways you can achieve that:
Build Relationships with Your Employees
Like I said before, as a small business owner, you have the rare opportunity of building relationships and knowing each of your employees personally. When you have that with your employees, they want the business to succeed because they want you to succeed. It’s hard to have a friendship full of trust and not try to help out wherever you can. If you can help your employees see their worth through your personal relationship, that will go a long way.
This one is easier for bigger businesses than it is for small businesses, but providing incentives is always effective. People love to know they’re going to get something extra for their hard-work. You may not be in a position to provide raises or monetary incentive (but if you are, that’s a great way to go). You can, instead, provide incentives like company parties, company lunches or things that your employees can earn along the way.
Be Understanding & Personable
Part of building that positive relationship with your customers means being understanding and caring toward them. It’s a two-way street and if you want your customers to care and be concerned for you and your business, you need to do the same for them. Be interested in their lives and understanding when needed. This doesn’t mean they should walk all over you, but it does mean that you should be just as caring toward them as you hope they are toward your business.
Everyone loves positive praise! People love to be appreciated and noticed. When your employees do something wrong, as a business owner, you’re usually quick to notice and mention it. However, be sure you’re doing the same whenever your employees do something right. When you see a happy customer or a job well done, let your employee know and make sure they understand how much you appreciate it. This is so simple but will go a long way!
For more insights on marketing strategy that actually works for small business, subscribe to the FreshLime Newsletter here. Connect with Jay Bean, Founder of FreshLime and Small Business Marketing Expert on LinkedIn and Twitter. And last of all, if any of these tips have helped you or if you have anything to add please comment below. We’d love to hear from you!