Getting the Most from Your People Every Day

It’s a proven fact that if you’re looking to either modify your company culture or kick-start performance levels, regular employee communication is paramount. It may take shape in the form of meetings or an impromptu chat on the store floor in between customer visits but the key is to ensure this does happen. Start every day by energizing your employees to want to do more for you and for them. Make the first few minutes of the workday a positive impression. It’s proven to set the tone for the rest of the day, when you set the example. Here’s how:

Arrive Early
There is nothing quite as frustrating to an employee as having been at work for an hour, and seeing his/her Boss saunter in after the regular workday has begun. How do expect to earn their respect and have them give their all when you don’t set the example?
Arrive to work before or with your employees and your actions will demonstrate your dedication to your departmental and company objectives. If you expect the best from others you must expect the same from yourself.


Show off your Positive Mental Attitude; it’s contagious. Walking briskly through the door with a smile and a purpose. You’ll be sharing a positive message with your body language and empowering others to do the same. Be consistent; do it even on the days you really don’t feel like it. Drag your way into the office and you’ll let everyone around you know that it’s going to be a long day when they’re better off avoiding you.

Meet and Greet
If you want to keep your team guessing about your attitude, walk directly to your office and close the door. Alternatively, begin your day by stopping by and greeting your people. Ask them about their weekend, how they feel the last sale went or any customer wants or desires they’re aware of that the company should investigate. It’s a great way to make them aware you care about them as individuals, not simply a tool to get the job done. If you just carry on to your office and fail to acknowledge the others around you, it will only serve distance you from those who you’ll rely on to succeed.

Clarify Expectations
While interacting with your staff, let others know what your action plan for the day is. Make them aware you have goals set to accomplish, whether individual or team related. It will spur others to action when they see that the boss is ready to get down to business and make it happen.
Most employees will tell you that they actually do want…no, they need…direction. Share the reason as to why you want certain things accomplished. When they feel you’ve taken them into your circle of trust, they’ll try doubly hard to accomplish those tasks and ultimately reach the corporate or department goal.

Acknowledge Success…and hard work

Not everyone needs the literal pat on the back, but they do require acknowledgment for contributions. A movie or dinner certificate is a cheap motivator just to recognize them for going above and beyond the norm. When your boss tells you “that was a job well done”, pass it on to your troops. Let them know you appreciate them…and see how many volunteers you have the next time you ask for help on a project.

These simple tips, when used consistently, will help motivate your staff  inspire them to succeed and work hard to produce results for you, them and their families.

Wolf Gugler is President, Wolf Gugler & Associates Limited, a preeminent executive recruitment firm assisting retailers and their suppliers develop high performance teams throughout North America and the Caribbean. You can reach him via email at wolf@wolfgugler.com.

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