How to Get More Out of Your Employees: Part 2

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Welcome to Day 2 of a two day blogging event I’m calling “How to Get More Out of Your Employees”. Check out Day 1 here.

If you’re a manager, on any level, you know how important it is to get the most of your employees. The job of a good manager is to cultivate an environment where your employees can flourish. Because when your employees flourish, so will your company.

Today’s tip is: listen to them

The roles and responsibilities of leaders are changing. In the past, the common belief was that the best and brightest people within an organization were at the very top, and that all the good ideas came from the executives at a company. After all, that’s how they got there in the first place.

But times changed. And in today’s world, its vital for success as a manager to understand that good ideas come from all over the place. Instead of coming up with all the ideas, good managers create an environment where good ideas are created, refined, and given the attention they deserve.

Here are some ways you can open up communication in your organization:

  1. Create a physical or digital suggestion box
  2. Incentivize good ideas with public recognition and even cash rewards
  3. Have executives meet with front line employees on a regular basis
  4. Hold regular town hall style meetings with an open agenda

Much has been written about millennials and the challenges they present to employers. But the truth is, the younger generation wants to have more say, and more control over their jobs. And as an employer, it’s important you recognize that someone who wants to take ownership over their position is more passionate, and likely to improve your company.

You should cultivate this mindset, and be on the lookout for real innovative ideas wherever they come from.

Did I miss anything? Let me know in the comments below.


5 Reasons Your Employees Are Leaving

Welcome to another edition of the “5 Reasons” blog series. This will be a weekly blog series, with a fresh post every Monday. Last week’s topic was “Five Reasons You Need to Rethink Your Online Marketing”.

This Week’s Topic = Five Reasons Your Employees are Leaving

Marketers and small business owners have to worry about more than just marketing. And marketing is difficult when you lose good people from your team. So today I wanted to focus on reasons that you might be having trouble keeping talented people on your team.

  1. You’re not challenging them. Talented people like to be challenged. They like work that they can really dig into, research, analyze, and learn from. Repetitive tasks with little creative problem solving are not going to excite talented employees.

  2. You’re not making work fun. Talented people like to work in an environment that rewards creativity. They want to be surrounded by other talented people, in an office that makes coming to work each day exciting. Too many rules and restrictions means you are likely to lose talented people.

  3. You’re not providing enough opportunities. Talented people want to see that their hard work will get them somewhere. They are looking for advancement opportunities within the organization, as well as career training opportunities that will allow them to grow within their field or train for a new skill.

  4. You’re not paying enough. The job market is slowly, but steadily, getting stronger. It’s no longer acceptable to underpay your talented employees. There are opportunities at other companies who pay more. If you can’t afford raises, offer performance incentives or other non-pay compensation items like gym plans, health benefits, or paid time off.

  5. You’re not listening to them. The quickest way to lose talented people is not allowing them to put their talents to use. If employees feel undervalued or ignored, you will lose them to companies who know how to treat them better. Ask them what you can be doing better, and be prepared to listen.

As always, if you have your own tips, please include them in the comments below.

Little Things 11 – Incentivize Everything

Welcome to this week’s edition of “Little Things”, a weekly blog series covering the small changes that you can make to improve marketing performance.

Last week’s topic was nine marketing tips.

This week’s tip:

Incentivize Everything

There are things that you want your customers or potential customers to do. Certain things, there could be a lot, that will make it more likely that your business will flourish.

“If only they would refer a friend, we’d double our revenue.” This week’s tip is, incentive those actions.

A while back I wrote an entire series on using incentives in business. But here are a few quick ideas to get you started:

  1. You can create membership cards to help your business gain loyal, repeat customers.
  2. You can offer free gifts or cash back for new customer referrals.

  3. You can offer a discount in exchange for a survey or review of your product.

  4. You can offer free content for people who sign up for your email list.

  5. You can offer publicity or cross-promotion to get customers to interact with you on social networks.

Start by making a list of all the things you’d like people to do. Then figure out which are the most important, and add incentives. Then promote those incentives to people.

How to Incentivize Everything: Series Recap

When you want something done right, do it yourself.

That way of thinking is the quickest way I know to collapse under the stress of doing business, quit, shut it down, and go insane. In the business world, if you want something done right, I say incentivize it.

Adding incentives is a great way to get people to perform a certain way, say or do something that you want in order to help your business. And that was the entire basis of my blog series, Incentivize Everything!

In preparing to reboot this series, I thought I’d start by sharing where we’ve been. Below are seven posts written last year on different ways to incentivize employees, customers, and the consumer market in general.

Let me know what you think in the comments section below. Who wants to start?

Incentivize Everything! Innovation

Previous posts in this series:

Innovation. It’s a very popular word to throw around these days. From the President’s speeches to car commercials, everyone is asking for and touting innovation. Maybe it all started because a little blog I used to write.

The definition of innovation is simple, the introduction of something new, or change. In the business sense, it’s a new way of doing something that is better than before. Either it makes the customer experience simpler or more effective, or it makes business processes flow smoother, or it saves money, etc.

At the end of the day, innovation moves us forward. And if you’re running a company, you are looking for the next big idea. Well it’s time to stop looking, and start getting. Go out and do something to make it happen. That’s the entire philosophy to the Incentivize Everything series.

A business’s greatest resources are its employees. From the executives, to the marketers, to the customer service staff, to the factory workers, they are the most important (and possibly the most underutilized) aspects of a successful business. And they have ideas, they have the ideas that you are looking for.

All you need to do is incentivize them to step forward, and empower them to implement.

For every new idea that the company implements, that employee gets ___. Fill in the blank with money, days off, promotions, parties, anything that would drive employees to create change.

Google gives its employees one day each week to work on their own projects. That’s how Gmail was born. Think about it.