Chances are you feel pretty good about your business. After all, as a small business owner, you’re pursuing a dream you’ve had your eye on for most of your professional life. But what about your employees? Do they share your enthusiasm and sense of workplace satisfaction? The following tips on developing a positive office culture will help you answer with a definitive ‘yes!’
Tell your employees what it is about the work that you love so much. Explain to them where you envision this business taking everyone in one, five and even ten years out. The best place for this to take place is while you’re hiring, but don’t stop there. Energize employees periodically in one-on-ones and all-employee meetings. The more they feel your enthusiasm, the more it will rub off on them. A vision statement that’s clearly communicated is also a way to get employees on board. For tips on creating an effective one, click here.
Hiring employees with positive attitudes is a must when developing an outstanding culture. Once you land one or two, network with them to locate others that may be interested in coming on board. Positive people tend to attract each other, so when you hire them you’re enhancing your culture both now and in the future when you need to hire more.
When every employee feels valued and knows they can contribute, satisfaction and positivity is a natural byproduct. Whether you run a food truck, a law firm or a salon, make sure everyone knows that you value his or her opinions and ideas. An open-door policy is one way of encouraging this.
Employees appreciate honesty and are far more positive when they feel they know what’s going on with the business. While some topics are obviously off limits, like individual employee pay, try to communicate as much about the direction of the company as you can. You may find, for instance, that sharing details like company contributions to local charities will instill a deeper sense of pride in employees and further enhance the overall culture. For more insights into transparency, consider this case study.
Everyone likes to know when he or she is doing a good job, so be generous with compliments and recognize good work. Employees who feel appreciated are more satisfied and productive. When the situation merits more than a compliment, consider an appropriate reward, such as a gift certificate or bump in pay. While it may seem like a small investment, it will pay off in positive morale and a healthy overall culture.
The demanding job of running a business can take a toll on your own positivity from time to time. When you feel yourself losing steam, or find that the daily demands are draining your positive energy, think about what got you excited about the business in the first place. Take a few days off or a vacation to do this. You may find at the end of it that your passion has returned, making it easier to set a legitimate example.
A positive culture doesn’t happen by accident. By keeping these tips in mind you can create the foundation for lasting success.