Running a startup means being on top of every little thing going on inside of your firm; obviously, managing to do that is almost impossible as there are so many things to keep in check. However, while some things may be left neglected (for a while), there are those that need your full attention. That is – without a doubt – your employees’ happiness.
For everyone who is in their right mind, uttering a question like “why do I need to have happy employees in my company” is obsolete. It is understood that a happy employee is a productive employee who’ll not only give his best to keep his job at your firm, but will also make sure yours and his goals have a united front – that front being the prosperity of your firm.
If you are working with people who are miserable or feel like they are constantly undermined, i.e. not given a leg up even when both you and they know they deserve it, be sure that you’ll lose your most precious employees and get stuck with a semi-functional team with no future.
Now that we’ve established how important it is to have a happy team working with you, here’s what you can do to stimulate that happiness and keep your startup productive:
Increase the salary
Money’s a factor in everything, no matter how much we deny it; just to make things clear – we aren’t talking about lush and extravagant lives, fast cars and exotic destination islands (although, nobody would mind) but simple life that’s lacking nothing (much). The people you work with have families that probably depend on them; the fact is that those families don’t get to see much of them as they are spending most of their days at the office, but if that is the case,they want to see a proper reward for the effort and time invested. Even if the people in your team don’t have families that depend on them, they’ve still got themselves to support – and it’s all pretty expensive out there.
If your current budget allows it, increase your employees’ salaries; even if it’s a 5% or 10% bump in the salary, it’ll definitely mean a lot and ensure that they maintain the productivity levels. And the smile on their faces? Priceless!
Grant them vouchers and gift cards
While giving someone a gift card, voucher or a coupons does sound a bit… poor, but these are actually an amazing way to get the most of your money! That is – if the firm is footing the bill for all the gift cards given out to the employees, the people will be extremely happy as they’ll enjoy the benefits without having to spend a dime. Amazing!
Depending on what you find appropriate and budget-friendly, these gift cards can range from spa weekends, massages, river cruises restaurant lunches/dinners, etc. to more grounded benefits like food and home supplies items, clothes and other things needed for a household. Make your decision and go for it – your best employees should know they are valued and thought of!
Praise their work
Sometimes, a nice word can mean more than any amount of money given; your team, no matter how friendly with each other, they are after all competing for that raise, better position, leg up, corner office, new deal that brings cash in or landing a new client. When you notice that an employee (or several) are amazing at what they do and that they’ve been giving their best – don’t stay silent. Make it your business to pay them your gratitude and respect, and make sure all other colleagues hear it. The best time to do that is during team meetings you use for brainstorming of new work plans and strategies. Take a few minutes to say a few words about the people who have been working with extra dedication and hand out small gifts. Also, don’t forget to throw in a few nice words about everyone else – you don’t want others to feel less important or left out.
Sure, we are all a part of a capitalist society and merely tiny links in huge corporate chains. But still – we are all human, and emotions play a big role in our lives – as a boss, make sure you play those emotions to your advantage!