While I agree with the sentiment wholeheartedly, it made me think.
What does it mean to treat them well enough, so they don’t want to leave? Does that prevent having high expectations for staff? Does that mean that we as business owners cannot expect an honest day’s work for a day’s pay? I do not think so.
I believe that treating people well starts with creating a culture where people are valued and heard. People are more than just assets to be managed. I believe if staff know that you value them that is the first part of treating them well.
Second is setting clear end realistic expectations. I believe staff thrive when they know what is being expected. Constant fear of layoff does not lead to people wanting to stay. Expecting people to be available 24 hours a day 7 days a week does not make people want to stay. While one may say I never do that, with the proliferation of smart phones, we are never truly be away from work unless the leader models that behavior.
Oh, and never say to a member of your team that is struggling to get everything done “If you organized your time better…” or “if you cannot do this, I will find someone who can.” Invest a little time to understand why. It may be that the expectations are more than any one person can manage. It may be that the person needs training. Or it may mean that the person is not a good fit.
Finally, staff see inconsistencies. If the company has to cut back, do not, as an owner show up with a brand-new sports car. It sends mixed messages, that the cutbacks are being placed on the backs of employees. People want you to walk the walk, not just talk the talk.
This does not mean that you cannot have lofty goals, and high expectations for your staff. You should have them. Just make sure that the lofty goals and expectations are realistic. Nothing makes someone check out faster than being in a position that they know they cannot succeed in no matter how much they work, or how smart they are.
Maybe everyone else knew this, but it made me think about what it means to treat people well.
Author: Russ Bell