Your People – Roses or Thorns

Your People - Roses or Thorns

“I wouldn’t be able to succeed without the team that we have here at the moment,” I have heard managers tell me. “I am blessed with an amazing team’.
“My life would be much simpler if I didn’t need to hire these $%^&*#@’, the business owners clearly state.

People. A major cause of a manager’s existence, but the source of great satisfaction for another manager; the blossoms on the stem of a company structure, or the thorns that make our lives miserable. What is the best option for you?

Jim Collins, in his book “Good to Great,” speaks about how important it is to get the most appropriate passengers on the bus and the ones who don’t belong on it. A group of people who want to move towards the same goal, sharing the same goals, ideals, and expectations is a wonderful journey. The bus might not always travel in the direction that you expect; however, if the passengers keep their highest standards and morale, they will be happy to travel wherever is the best for the entire group. A diverse group of people, in contrast, who are all consumed by their own personal pursuits, with no drive, focus, and enthusiasm to work for the common good, can be a constant cause of frustration for the owner of the business or the manager. Here are three important points to apply in your management of employees.

1. Understand the Traits and Qualities You Want in Your Team

Begin by making an outline of the characteristics you wish to observe in employees. Consider your personal traits such as are positive, enthusiastic, a team player as well as well-trained, disciplined, and able to handle conflicts, etc. After you’ve come up with a definitive list of traits, you can put them in an array with the names of your employees in the column to the left and the characteristics in the upper row. After you’ve completed this step, put a tick in the cell that is relevant in case they are currently meeting this quality, and a cross if they do not. You may use a number and percentage system if it suits your needs better. Once you’ve completed it, you’ll have a diagram that gives you a better understanding of your team’s strengths and where the weak spots are. It also allows you to design the exact kind of training your team members to require. When recruiting, take note of these factors and create your interview and application to reflect this.

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2. Manage Your People

Making sure that your team members are aware of the expectations they must meet in their roles and in the actual task and in the individual results is crucial for the development and maintenance of an efficient team. If their roles are ambiguous and unclear, this will reflect by their actions. If their job description is written in a concise manner and with the appropriate expectations of measurable performance, paired with regular review, you’ll notice significant shifts in the performance of your team. By doing this for each team member can help in keeping the best people aboard and also help the people who are not the right ones to get off.

3. Encourage your team members to be empowered

Effective people who are satisfied in their job are more likely to remain long in the long run than those who don’t. I have heard of an Australian business that was described as a retirement home. People who work there typically work for many years. Why is that? It’s simply a wonderful spot to work from in your life. To build a more empowered workforce, both managers and owners should be focused on employees and not just on profit. Inquire of employees at every level to share their ideas on ways to get things improved while communicating the company’s objectives and vision. Making time from work for employees to get to know management is an integral part of forming an empowered group that, in a sense, is on the same page. The CEO may have an office at the top of the building; however, being able to enjoy a drink or two with their colleagues during a weekend afternoon could make a huge difference in creating a level playing field. Managers who operate from the floor have greater output than those who communicate through email. A construction company I’ve heard of would meet towards the end of the week for a BBQ in the house of the owner. It gave employees an underlying sense of community spirit that they were working in common, working together to achieve all the good of society. If a business has this feeling of camaraderie, employees are more likely to stay for longer and perform better even if they decline requests from other companies to make greater compensation. Be a leader for employees, not just a loss of business. Help the people who aren’t doing it to quit the bus, and then work hard to motivate and encourage those who are on the right side of the bus. A more happy team will result in an improved customer experience, and ultimately, it will reflect in your financial results. The most successful teams are those with empowered employees.

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For a final point, Remember to search for passion firsthand abilities second (you can always impart the latter to a person who is enthusiastic). It is much easier to train the speedy dog to slow its pace than one that is slow to accelerate. If the characteristics that are mentioned above do not exist at the beginning and are not present from the beginning, they will likely not appear at the end. Employ people based on who they are first and not just based on what they’re capable of doing. Then… make sure you create an excellent workplace culture. There are always some thorns, but the effort you put into your team will produce beautiful roses.


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