You’ve probably heard it before, but the team you build is the backbone to your business. A team of talented, motivated individuals all adds up to what allows a company to thrive. So how do you go about creating a company that these people want to work at? And what do you do as you’re hiring these people? Creating a productive and open work environment and a company culture that makes employees that want to stay are a few of the things that help create your dream team. You know those companies you hear about who have amazing cultures and employees? You know, places like Apple and Google. Even if you’re a small fry compared to them, there is plenty to learn from their approach and things apply as you build your team. Here are a few things to keep in mind as you grow yours.
Encourage Open Discussion and Listening
People don’t want to work somewhere where they are scared to voice their opinions. They also don’t want to feel like they aren’t listened to, especially for reasons due to their experience level. Having open discussions makes employees feel respected and builds up people in management as respectful leaders employees enjoy being around and working for. You may get some of your best new ideas from your employees when you give them the platform to speak and be heard. Everything from open floor plans to frequent debriefs and mixing between departments all help to encourage this.
Establish an Appropriate Work/Life Balance
This one is a hot topic. As companies, especially in the tech and media spaces move towards a more fluid and liberal work environment, many other companies are struggling to keep up. With competition offering fair hours, flexible work schedules, benefits packages, and an overall good vibe, it can be hard to recruit the best talent. It isn’t about free snacks and drinks, it’s about understanding what matters and what doesn’t. The days of having employees sit at their desks after they’re done working just to prove a point are over. Making changes in how your workplace looks, feels, and operates is crucial to building and retaining a quality team. Think working smarter, not harder, and prioritizing the right goals.
As much as people like relaxed environments, they also want to know what is being asked of them so they can make plans to achieve goals and of course, be rewarded. In order to have a motivated team, which builds a positive environment filled with people who know what to do, and better yet want to do it, you need to have clear goals for individuals, teams, departments, and the overall company. Transparency is key here.
When you’re hiring, even if it takes longer or requires more effort, prioritizing diversity of all types is a critical element to building your best possible team. Team members with different backgrounds can bring different skillsets to the table and different experiences. People of the same age, race, gender, and background often have had similar life experiences, which means their reactions and input may be similar. Creating a melting pot helps everyone learn from one another and your team be tolerant, understanding, and as smart and innovative as possible.
Foster Positive Mentor Relationships
By setting up teams and management so people enjoy working with their superiors, people are unlikely to feel like they are outgrowing their job, or that their job is meaningless, which often lead to quick employee turnover, something that is inconvenient for the company as well as a bad representation of your brand. Providing opportunities for people to grow and move up encourages employees to want to grow with the company and do good work on behalf of them. Finding out what individual’s goals are and pairing them with management that can support and teach them provides benefits that extend beyond pay.