How to Build Your Business With Employees

Twenty-four hours a day times 7 days equals 168 hours in a week. Your employees spend 40 hours working for you, 40, or so, hours sleeping, leaving a nice fat 88 hours out in the community. Eighty-eight hours where they could be making positive or very negative remarks about your business.

The average number of people who attend weddings and funerals is 250. That’s the sphere of influence each employee brings to your business. Each one of your employees knows 250 friends, relatives, casual acquaintances, friends from social clubs or church, and members of the softball team. You can also add friends from social networks like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn to the mix.

Social Networking Could Be the New Negative Advertising

Its one thing for a disgruntled employee to make a few negative remarks to someone on the next bar stool. Its much more serious when they type it out permanently on the Internet. I’m not suggesting that you demand the passwords of all your employees to monitor their social networking accounts. I’m suggesting that you be aware of the seriousness of improving work communication.

Making it easy for your employees to complain will go a long way in preventing negative publicity that can be left to fester and spread to other potential customers.

Give Employees a Sense of Ownership

I’m not suggesting that you issue company stock and put them all on your board of directors. Employees need to feel some empowerment. They need to know that they have some control over the decisions made that affect their daily work life. They need to feel that they “own” their job. Even the boss has boundaries just like the employee.

Employee evaluations are becoming passé. For the most part they were a “Spanish Inquisiton” of the employee rather than a positive reinforcement tool. There are hundreds of things that employees do each year that enhances the business in the eyes of the customers. Ninety-nine percent of which the boss never sees or even worse hears about.

Give employees an incentive to bring their friends and neighbors into your business. Give them points for each referral that can be redeemed for a day off, or a gift certificate. I recommend that you find a way to publicly recognize every employee or team every six months. Encourage employees to report positive things other employees do that make the business better in some way.

Some Final Thoughts

Meet each employee privately and ask them what their goals and dreams are. Some might be saving for their first home or for their education. They are not working “for you,”they are working for themselves. When employees and management respectfully work toward each other’s goals and dreams through shared efforts then you have an unstoppable business.


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