by Adam Witty, founder and CEO of Advantage | ForbesBooks and author of “Authority Marketing: How to Use 7 Pillars of Thought Management to Make Competition Irrelevant”
You have probably heard or seen the phrase before, and perhaps even said it: TGIF.
I don’t particularly like this phrase because it conveys the message of how many people see their work. You can’t wait for Friday to come when the week is over.
But what if everyone was so passionately interested in their job that they didn’t wait for Friday but looked forward to Monday, a time when they could do anything again?
These are the kind of people you need to create a company that makes real impact. As an entrepreneur and CEO, I firmly believe that when you take care of your employees and create an environment where they are happy and engaged, profits take care of themselves.
How do you create such an environment, especially in these days of remote work that makes engagement even more difficult? There are five keys to this, regardless of whether your team is working remotely or not:
A great company starts with you.
If you own a company that employees don’t seem involved with, take a look in the mirror because it all starts with you. Let’s be honest. For some of us we don’t own businesses; The business owns us. We feel like prisoners and are trapped. If this is the case for you, then you’ve created the environment to do it in. If you’re in business just to make money, your team members know and that affects their attitudes. This is why it’s important to have a passion for what you do that goes beyond the money. You need to be so enthusiastic about your company’s mission that the feeling becomes tangible and your team becomes passionate too.
Have a solid foundation.
To build a world class organization, you need a solid foundation. For me, this foundation is your main purpose, your core values and your BHAG. (BHAG stands for Big Hairy Audacious Goal, something your business may find impossible. The idea of a BHAG came from Jim Collins’ book “Built to Last.”) When you have a core purpose, core values, and goals, BHAG brings you company-wide excitement generate that motivates your team.
Translate your purpose into a comprehensive plan.
Goals without a plan do not come true. You should have a plan that everyone in your company knows and you need to track progress. Everyone should also know the status of the plan and whether any areas require special attention. Talk about the plan so much that people get tired of hearing about it.
Recruit and retain the best people.
Take the time to recruit to find the best candidates. The approach should be to hire slow and fire quickly, but unfortunately most companies do the opposite. You should also have a system in place to measure how employees are doing. Are you good? Do you live the core values of your company? The ones who do both are your A players. For those who don’t, it’s time to part. How about those who do one thing but not the other? Give a chance to those who live up to the values but have difficulty performing. Maybe they are just in the wrong position. It’s a tougher call for those who perform well but don’t embody the values. If you keep them and their bad attitudes, the message will be sent that the values don’t matter.
Invest in your people.
A mentor once told me that my job as CEO wasn’t building a company, but people building the company. Encourage and provide opportunities for employees to improve. In my company Advantage | ForbesBooks everyone is asked to complete 120 hours of professional development each year by attending workshops, reading books, listening to podcasts, or participating in other learning activities.
So hire the right people and let them see your passion for your business. Establish a core purpose and core values, and set yourself a big, hairy, bold goal. Make a plan and make sure everyone is aware of this plan. Finally, encourage your team members to expand and improve their skills.
If you do these things, you will come a long way to build a team that looks forward to Monday.
Adam Witty is the founder and CEO of Advantage | ForbesBooks, the authority marketing specialist. Working with entrepreneurs and professionals to strengthen their brands and grow their business through publishing, he has made the company one of the largest business book publishers in America. Adam is also a sought-after speaker, teacher, and consultant in marketing and business growth techniques for entrepreneurs and writers.