While having sharp skills and first-rate customer service can put you in a good stead for a successful career, without building a dedicated team and surrounding yourself with the right people, you might find yourself missing out on the opportunity to grow your business.
But creating a strong work environment isn’t as simple as merely going through the hiring process. You need to provide the right forms of leadership to ensure that your tradies have an opportunity for upward mobility and start to work autonomously.
How do you become a leader?
According to Small Fish’ Jon Dale, mutual respect is key. Dale references leadership expert Simon Sinek.
“If your team feels like you’ve got their backs, they’ll have yours,” he says.
Using the case study of a company leader who changed the way he treated his employees financially, Dale explains how earning the respect of your colleagues can help improve the morale of the business.
Initially, workers at his company were paid poorly: barely enough to cover bills. His
employees resented him for it.
After researching, he found a magic number that would satisfy his employees. He took a paycut to ensure that everyone in his business at least had a minimum wage of $70,000. Interestingly, the same research found that after $70,000, the happiness of employees increases at a slower rate.
His experiment worked: the business thrived, with revenue and profit growing. His workers also wanted to stick around, creating a positive environment.
“He looked after them,” Dale continues. “(He) did something to look after them and they looked after him and his business in return.”
While increasing pay is ideal, there are other ways to show your people you value them, according to Dale:
- Safety – make sure you keep the workplace, especially a construction site, as safe
as possible. Build a culture where the rules are clear and people understand the risk
of working with power tools.
- Paying them properly – as we saw, increasing wages have an extremely positive
effect on your workers. For many businesses, however, they can’t afford to double pay overnight. Instead, motivating staff with yearly increases and career progression is an alternative way of keeping them happy on the job.
- Communication channels – You’re not just a boss, you’re a friend as well. You need
to make your employees feel comfortable that they can chat to you about anything.
Sure, you might not be the person they go to when they’re dealing with personal
issues, but it’s still important that they feel like they can talk to you. That way when
they are dealing with a personal issue – such as breaking up with a partner – they
know you’ll be understanding if they might appear flat at work.
Looking to start your own business? Head to Qualify Me! to see how a tradesman coach like Dale can give you the keys to success.