Is your Firm ‘Family Happy’?
Most of us would wish to have a happy family environment. Who needs shouting, screaming and arguments? A peaceful and contented atmosphere is just common sense. So if it works for the family at home, should the same not be said of your firm?
It’s a funny thing that I find the more I embrace this concept, the better my business.
Yes certainly over the years staff with whom I consider, I have been more than generous with (and I am not just talking about financial rewards, in fact that is only a driver if you pay such low rates it’s the only thing that matters) have taken advantage of me. But then so have various members of my home family from time to time, especially various teenage children though of course that tends to come with the territory.
Mostly this hasn’t stopped me from looking after my staff, and frankly being as generous as I can realistically afford, mostly because I get a buzz out of it, but also because the payback in terms of loyalty is usually 10 fold. This means when I need them they are always there for me. I understand that there is serious unemployment and therefore staff should be theoretically 20 a dozen, but in my experience the good ones are very hard to come by, and so I do everything I can to keep them.
If you follow Wikipedia inventor guide lines, you should treat all your staff as if they were volunteers. Although I may not go that far, I never ever take them for granted, never ever ask them to do something I wouldn’t do and always, always say thank you (and mean it). Simple really, except for some bosses it would appear not to be.
Mostly I have worked for myself, but when I have had short periods working for others, it’s the small things that make a massive difference to the jaundiced employee struggling through the mud each day. your mood as MD sets the tone, especially so in a small business, however bad you feel you cannot let this show, and yes that’s hard but tough, and get going etc!
A bunch of flowers, a box of chocolates mean so much and costs very little, but can seal the loyalty factor that will differentiate your business in difficult times. And finally, never underestimate the power of a smile or a laugh to lighten the mood. Plus it’s good for the soul.
Jo Haigh is Partner at fdscfs and Cracking Boards. www.fds-group.uk.com