Are your staff making you depressed?
Are your staff getting you down? Feel like you’re wading through HR treacle?
It’s tiring getting a heap of complaints from your technicians or your admin team. And whilst internal complaints will happen the last thing you want to be dealing with is inappropriate behaviour towards customers. What if one of your technicians kept bagging out on jobs, or leaving rude notes about clients?
Short term your options are to go down the formal HR route and issue a yellow card which can leave a sour taste in everyone’s mouth. You can also try having a heart to heart or some straight talking, often to little effect. Either way you’re in damage limitation mode – what you need is longer term change to prevent situations like this ever happening.
The good news is there is a proven method to improving company culture to such an extent that you’d leap out of bed at some ungodly hour to catch up with your awesome team. Perhaps that’s a little ambitious but it’s definitely possible to create a culture where the whole team is thriving. With time and effort you can create an environment which nourishes and supports you and your staff.
If you want to experience such a road to Damascus moment for your business you can rest easy that many other companies have walked this path successfully. It all starts with creating a culture statement with the collective values of your organisation endorsed by each and every employee. The power of having this in black and white is it creates a moral code by which everyone is empowered to act. Hiring, firing, and customer relationships are all now guided by clear value sets.
There are various tried and tested means to creating your core values. Reading Tony Hsieh’s book on Zappos, Delivering Happiness, is a good start and can help you get a feel for how to build a company which ‘inspires [employees] through values’ rather than motivation.
If you want to dive straight in these steps will help you on your journey:
- Create a post-it ‘wall’ with each sticker as a core value.
- Bring your key staff together to discuss the top 5 which best represent what you want your company to stand for.
- Write them down nice and big on a sheet of A3 and stick it on the wall! This helps keep them front of mind in the office.
- Add them to your website and use it in your marketing material.
- Try using your core values as part of your decision making during Annual Reviews.
- Practice what you preach – anyone can be pulled up if they don’t stick to the company values – including the boss!
An example value statement might be:
Show total professionalism and respect to our customers at all times.
- Always ask how a customer is going when first speaking or meeting with them.
- Ensure at the end of a conversation or job that you have addressed all customer concerns.
- Keep the work environment spotless and treat all properties with respect.
- Arrive a little early for each job or if you’re running late send an automated ETA message from Scheduleflow.
Another example could be:
Ensure that in all your interactions with customers you go out of your way to over deliver, and put a smile on your customer’s face 🙂
- Leave a thank you card after every job (if appropriate), with the technician’s name handwritten, and a way to get in touch.
- Use Scheduleflow’s follow up reminder feature to check-in 4 weeks after a job to ensure everything is a-ok. The 12 month check-up is a great source of additional work as a little aside 🙂
Good luck folks, here’s a thought to keep in mind for the rest of your day:
“There’s a big difference between motivation and inspiration: inspire through values and motivation takes care of itself.” Tony Hsieh, CEO, Zappos.