Dave Thomas

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Are You an All Work and No Play Boss?

Dave Thomas

January 23, 2015

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How would you rate yourself as a small business owner when it comes to treating your employees?

Are you a company guy or gal who makes your employees as much of a priority as your customers? Or are your workers just numbers in your company, folks who some you may not even know by name?

If you find yourself in the former, then chances are you run a winning small business that many people would love working for. On the other hand, those in the latter group are likely finding themselves with high employee turnover on a consistent basis.


It All Starts with Your Workers

In the event you’re looking for ways to be a better small business boss, take to heart some of these ideas:

  • Don’t play favorites – The big no-no in running a small business or any company for that matter is playing favorites. Yes, some employees will work harder and succeed more than others. That said treating some as better than all the rest sets you up for a divisive office atmosphere. Give everyone a fair chance to prove their worth to you from day one;
  • Set the mood – Face it; your employees are there to work, but that doesn’t mean the office must feel like a morgue. This is even more important in a small business setting given that people are closer to one another literally and figuratively than at a large company where hundreds and thousands of people work. Make the office setting inviting so people want to come to work each and every day. While you need to call the shots, get employee feedback on things like cubicles or no cubicles, light music or silence in the office and more;
  • Offer rewards – While your employees’ top rewards for a job well done are a salary and health benefits (in some companies), that does not mean you can’t sweeten the pot some. Some small businesses (through no fault of their own) are limited in the salaries and/or benefits they can offer. In place of larger salaries, consider offering specials and rewards like gym memberships, yearly movie passes, even a bundled package like Direct TV and Internet for the best workers in their homes. In today’s challenging financial world, it is not uncommon for employees to jump from job to job, looking for the salary that will position them best to succeed financially. When you throw in some other incentives like some of those mentioned above, you decrease the chances someone will consider leaving you;
  • Make available promotions – Last but not least, don’t run an office where there are never opportunities to move up the corporate (or small business in this case) ladder. If you have a company environment where employees know there will be the chance to not only move up but also improve their financial situation, they are more likely to work harder and stay longer. While you should not be throwing out raises half-heartedly, do it for those truly deserving of such acts.


As a small business owner, what works for you and your employees?


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