Ready To Take On Your First Employees? Here's What You Need To Know To Lead Them To Victory
There is a saying that goes 'with great power comes great responsibility'. Most of us experience some form of 'power' at some point in our lives - whether it is through our professional lives or personal. But one thing is clear, and that is that some people thrive at leadership and others do not. As a new business owner, chances are you already have leader-like capabilities instilled in you. After all, you probably wouldn't have started your own business if this wasn't the case. But you can only run your company as a one-man-band for so long. There will come a point at which you need to expand, and expansion usually means taking on some employees. This can be a daunting prospect for both parties, as starting a new job is always scary, but so is letting other people into your vision. Whilst it's important that you give your new workers time to settle in, it is also vital that you establish yourself as a strong leader early on - otherwise, your business may fail. Here are three things you need to optimise to make sure this doesn't happen to you.
Arguably the biggest cause of conflict within a small to medium enterprise is communication or rather lack of it. If your employees don't know who to turn to or what to say when they have a problem, you could quickly lose momentum within your business. Establish a system from day one. If you are available for phone calls on a daily basis, tell your staff that they should ring you for communication. If you are normally busy or in meetings day-to-day, encourage them to speak to you over email. You also need to make sure that the communication you do have with your staff is clear and concise. Remember, even though you might know your business plan and vision inside out, they might not.
One thing everyone knows about startups is that they are risky. Many fail within the first few years, and this is something your employees will be aware of. When something goes wrong, it is your job as their fearless leader to keep the ship afloat and keep spirits high. Even age-old businesses make costly mistakes sometimes, so this is just a natural part of running a business. But, as a startup, it can affect you in a much greater way, depending on the magnitude of the error. When this happens, try not to panic - at least not in front of your team! Put a short-term plan in place and construct a long-term one as quickly as possible. Providing you know it's possible, speak to your team about when you nail that deal or when you get that contract. If you struggle to raise spirits in a business environment, you might want to think about undertaking some leadership training at a company like Frosch Learning.
The great thing about having a small team built around your startup is that you have the chance to get to know everyone individually. This is a luxury that most larger businesses don't have - and used correctly, it can be a huge asset to your company. Different people learn and work in different ways. This could be something as simple as some people preferring to work with music on, with others preferring to work in silence. Speak to your team members about the kind of working environment they would like and the approach they would like to take. Some people work well under pressure, so you can throw work on them last minute - others panic and shrivel when that happens. So taking the time to get to know your team and their needs can make for an altogether better working environment.