It’s no great secret that employees work better when they’re passionate, valued, and empowered. And as anyone will tell you, it’s the businesses that foster a sense of community within their workforce that tend to stick around and succeed. But where does this sense of we’re-all-in-it-together come from? And how can you recreate it within your own enterprise?
One great way to build community, according to the experts, is to operate an open door policy within your organisation. And that doesn’t just mean letting people know that they can come to you with their problems at any time. Done properly, an open door policy encourages employees to come forward with feedback, suggestions, and problem-solving — even if the matter being discussed is not within their job remit. This will help them feel valued at your company and reaffirm the idea that their opinions count. As a bonus, you’ll get to hear some new perspectives on different elements of your business.
Also, consider aligning your enterprise with a chosen charity or two. You can get your employees involved in the selection process, ensuring that the cause is one which they feel connected to, and gather as a group to raise funds or volunteer. It can also be really beneficial to involve your company in community events such as festivals, fairs, and holidays — although it’s best to keep things secular if inclusivity is your goal.
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But it’s not just about creating frameworks for community within your business — your behaviour as the boss can have a huge impact on the working environment, even if you consider yourself to be on a level playing field with your employees. Although it might seem obvious, it’s important to make an effort to learn about the people you’re working with: about their families, their interests, and the important things in their lives. If someone is having a crisis, show concern and compassion — it’s worth forgiving a bit of unproductivity or an extended absence if it shows your employees that you care.
Of course, it’s also important to pitch in. Whether it’s a big push to meet a certain target or deadline or simply plodding through the monotony of some mundane task, you need to show your employees that you’re prepared to roll your sleeves up and get your hands dirty. If you simply delegate during times of stress, and don’t do anything yourself to ease the pressure, you’ll draw a line between yourself and your workers — a divide that’s sure to breed discontent.
Lastly, show that you respect your employees and their time by ensuring that everything is running smoothly behind the scenes. This means making sure that invoices are dealt with quickly and efficiently, and that there are no issues with wages being paid on time. If, like many entrepreneurs, you sometimes struggle with all the paperwork, a GoSolo Business Account is a great way to stay on top of things. Boasting clever functionality that allows you to easily keep on top of your company finances, it’s designed to free up your time so that you can focus on what you do best.
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