7 tips to improving staff performance
Summary - Find out how you can improve the performance of your employees.
It goes without saying that employees are at the forefront of every business. That's why it's important to provide them with the necessary training that will allow them to showcase their expertise and your company's services to their utmost potential.
It's all well and good having a great business concept, but it's not much use without people who are trained to promote it. Giving a new employee the company handbook to read over simply won't cut it. You need to do more than that. After all, your staff's levels of expertise should be in your best interests, as it's this expert knowledge that will bring in profits.
So how can you go two steps further for improving staff training in the workplace?
Create a positive workspace
You may not think it, but the working environment you create for your employees can impact on their performance. Positivity equals productivity, which is why you must strive to make your workplace a happy one.
Things such as ensuring there's enough light and keeping the doors open can create the illusion of a wider, clearer space, leading to the generation of creative ideas.
What's more, let your staff know that they can approach you should a problem arise. If they feel comfortable enough to talk to you about any issues, they'll have a lot more faith in the company as a whole.
Your employees could receive the best training, but if they aren't engaged, it won't be put to use effectively. Figures released by management consultancy firm Gallup last year show that only 13 per cent of employees worldwide are engaged at work.
Enhancing employee engagement, therefore, is vital. One way to do this is by conducting a survey, which all members of staff can complete anonymously, to identify specific areas that could be improved or changed to make employees feel more engaged.
Once these are identified, you can set realistic goals for achieving them.
Improve customer interaction
A strong relationship between employee and customer is essential for retaining custom and boosting profits.
Employees should find a common ground with the customer from which trust can be built. Addressing the customers needs and concerns, rather than trying to bombard them with services and products, will show them you understand and empathise.
Highlight the obstacles
If you notice that an employee is under-performing, it's important to find the root of the problem, rather than jump to conclusions.
Arrange a one-to-one with the employee, asking them open-ended questions about their role to come to an understanding of how it may have changed from their perspective. If the issue is more of a personal matter, they may not feel comfortable discussing it in person, in which case you could ask them to compose a letter detailing the problem.
Once it has been highlighted, you can find the best way to move forward and overcome it effectively together.
Boost customer service skills
Knowing the difference between good and poor customer service skills isn't rocket science, but it's easy to slip up on.
Ensure your employees communicate clearly, are empathetic and patient, clued-up on your products and services, and able to adapt to different demands and moods.
Give your employees a voice
Keeping employees happy is key in any business. Simply dictating what they can and can't do won't give them any drive, so let them have a say in how things are run in the company.
Send out regular staff satisfaction surveys and include them in company updates, so they can provide input and ideas about how to make your business more efficient.
Make it fun
While your aim is to boost profits, retain customers and utilise the knowledge of your employees, don't lose sight of keeping things fun.
Working for hours on end can take its toll, so provide employees with monthly targets and incentives, such as going out for lunch or drinks.
This will make your staff feel valued, giving them motivation to work hard.