It’s a common complaint. Employees don’t care. They are not engaged. How do I, as the owner of my business, motivate employees and get them to care?
Most owners believe that they have, by paying a competitive wage, given employees all the motivation they need. But money isn’t everything, particularly in today’s world. Frequently, money is the least effective motivator. That YOU are motivated by money does not mean everyone is motivated by money.
As an owner or manager, you have customers that call into the business, customers where your technicians visit and provide the service. But YOUR most important customers are employees. Read that again. YOUR most important customers are employees.
“Clients (customers) do not come first.
Employees come first.
If you take care of your employees,
they will take care of the clients (customers)”.
Most likely, you started your business by yourself. You may have had some help but you worked long hours, taking on the most difficult or involved tasks yourself. As you saw that you could not continue to do it all yourself, you hired others. You delegated to them essential tasks. What happened then? Are the same people who worked for you at the beginning, working for you today?
We heard recently about a business owner who, when he sold his business, had the same three key staffers he had when he started 18 years earlier. Why did those employees stay? He made his employees HIS key responsibility.
“Always treat your employees exactly as you want them to treat your best customers.”
Stephen R. Covey
Numerous studies have been conducted over the years by a variety of organizations that have found several things that employees want, items that get them engaged in their work. Although money is powerful for some people, there are other items as effective, if not more so: even so:
- Proud of the work they are doing
- To be treated fairly
- Respect the boss
- To be heard
- To have a personal life
- To be coached, NOT managed
- See bad employees fired
- Less stress
- A little security
- Beat the competition
In one study, 88% of the employees said that flexible time was a greater reward than more money. They also mentioned being cared about was important to them.
“I consider my ability to arouse enthusiasm among men the greatest asset I possess.
The way to develop the best that is in a man is by appreciation and encouragement.”
In today’s litigious society, employers have to be mindful of things that employers in the past did not have to address but even with these restrictions, EVERY owner or manager CAN and MUST make employees their first priority.
This is where by learning and applying the Pattern for Excellence, the very program you insist your Customer Service Representatives learn and apply, will assist you in making your employees YOUR number one priority.
Begin TODAY by asking yourself these questions:
- Am I positive when I walk in the door every morning?
- Do I say “hello” or “good morning” to everyone I see in the office?
- Do I notice when someone appears to be overwhelmed or extra busy and TELL them that I have noticed and encourage them?
- When was the last time I saw that the CSRs were very busy and I took a few calls, booked a few appointments, to help, without saying a word?
- Do I stay positive throughout the day?
- Am I confident throughout the day?
- Do employees know that I am confident in myself, in the business and in THEM?
- Do I listen, really listen, when an employee has an idea, a concern or is having a bad day?
- Do I meet one-on-one with EVERY employee EVERY year and just LISTEN?
- Do I CARE and do I communicate that I CARE in word and deed?
- Do employees know that I respect THEIR individual worth?
- Do I compliment them using specific qualities I’ve noticed in them?
- Do my words and actions complement each other and communicate that I genuinely care about employees as people?
- Do I say “YES”? Do I give beyond expectation?
- Do I implement employee suggestions as much as possible?
- Do I explain clearly and with kindness, when a suggestion doesn’t work out?
- When was the last time I asked employees how to solve a problem?
- Do I ask employees how they feel?
- Do I ask employees how we can do better?
- Do I understand that by serving employees, allowing them to solve problems, I am allowing THEM to progress and teaching them to serve better?
- Do I express how valuable employees are to me every day?
- Do I express gratitude to employees every day?
“When people are emotionally invested, they want to contribute.”
Here is a challenge for you. Focus on at least one principle every day for one week. See what happens when you apply the pattern to YOUR first responsibility—your employees.
Want to get employees emotionally invested and engaged in their jobs? Follow the Pattern for Excellence. YOUR engagement is the only way to get employees fully connected. By applying the Pattern for Excellence every day, you will find employees becoming better because YOU have become better in accepting them as YOUR first responsibility.
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Mary Burkett was born in Southern New Jersey, raised in Southern California, Mary Burkett is a graduate of the University of Utah.