How to Create the Ultimate Team to Drive your Business

Business owners can have the best planning, marketing strategies, products and services but without a great team, no plan can ever get off the ground.

As Anne M. Mulcahy said:

Employees are a company's greatest asset - they're your competitive advantage. You want to attract and retain the best; provide them with encouragement, stimulus, and make them feel that they are an integral part of the company's mission.

Building the ideal team by nurturing the individuals

We all want the right candidate for the job who will share our passion and be instrumental in turning our dream into reality.

As business owners, we should take note of the following:

1. Hire for attitude and train for skills.

We all want our new candidates to hit the ground running and by saying that we hire for attitude, we are not saying we ignore skills altogether. For every position, there is a skills set that candidates need to possess in order to perform their responsibilities. Beyond this, we need to look for people who are committed to taking personal responsibility for offering unforgettable service, produce products that are of the highest standards and deliver over and beyond. They also need to be able to think and act like owners.

Practical tip:

To screen for the right attitudes, work out what attitudes you are after and then design targeted questions to get at the specific attitudes that you want. For instance, ask a candidate about a time when he/she went above and beyond to meet the needs of a customer if you are looking to hire someone who is prepared to do whatever it takes to provide sensational service.

2. Set the expectations of the role from day one

Match expectations, responsibilities and rewards. More often than not, employees are most dissatisfied when they feel their efforts are not being recognised and rewarded or that their role in the bigger picture is negligible.

Practical tip:

Draw up an employment agreement which clearly sets out the expectations of the role, perhaps build in incentives to reward exceptional results and efforts and go through the agreement with the prospective employee in person. The importance of the role within the business structure also needs to be expounded. This way, you will have the opportunity to dispel any disillusions, answer any questions that the employee may have which also sends a message to your employee that you are always ready and willing to have open discussions with him/her. 

3. Make Work Life Balance part of your corporate culture

Time off after an intense working period, the occasional early leave day and respecting your employees’ personal space can go a long way to ensuring that you have a healthy, rejuvenated workforce and a workplace that is attractive to all the talents out there.

Practical Tip

Explore employment benefits programs, wellness programs to create happy, loyal and engaged employees. Such programs can also foster team bonding within your business for better overall performance.

4. Growth and training

Employers who help employees grow not only in their current roles but also in the development of new related skills play a part in shaping the careers of their employees. Prospects of advancement and the opportunity to learn new skills are often more valuable than monetary compensation from the employees’ perspective.

Practical Tip

Communicate with your employees on a regular basis and explore with them paths of advancement within the organization.

5. Fair remuneration

Compliance issues aside, employees should be rewarded and recognized for their good work and dedication.

Practical Tip

Incentive payments tied to productivity can be introduced into employment contracts, have “best achiever” awards within the organization so that achievements are celebrated, conduct fair annual appraisal of each employee and perhaps offer share options.

Other non monetary benefits can be flexible working hours where possible, allowing employees the occasional long weekend offs or longer lunch breaks. Bestow employees with responsibilities so that they can take ownership of their actions.

Determine Your Labour Structure for better bottomline

Labour costs are variable costs and careful management of such costs will have significant impact on your bottom line. Employers need to find the right mix of full time, part time, casual employees and may also want to supplement them with independent contractors. Different roles call for different modes of employment to minimise labour costs when creating an overall structure that is conducive to hard work, a sense of belonging, creativity and innovation.

Australian businesses need to work within our workplace law framework and understand how and when labour on-costs apply to different modes of labour engagement. We will elaborate on the difference between employees and independent contractors in our upcoming articles.

In the meantime, refer to our earlier articles on how to comply with the Fair Work Act 2009 and the new protection of vulnerable workers legislation.

Note: The information contained in this article and on website is general information only and does not constitute legal or compliance advice.