Managing Remote Employees Part One: Corporate Culture and Remote Employees

Managing Remote Employees: Part One: Corporate Culture and Remote EmployeesIf you’re considering telecommuting as an option for your employees or maybe you’re exploring outsourcing to a virtual team, then you could be making a very good business decision. According to research by Gallup, remote workers tend to log more hours per week and are more engaged than those working in an office or onsite.  There is also potential for huge savings by diminishing overhead costs such as rented office space and 401k plans.

However, managing remote employees does have its own set of challenges. The out-of-sight element makes it all too easy to put it out-of-mind that remote employees have specific needs, too.  This two-part series of articles about managing remote employees will explore tactics that will help you oversee and support those who work from home as effectively as the staff who work in an office in order to maximize efficiency and minimize operational issues.

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4 Fundamental Hiring Rules for Startups

4 Fundamental Hiring Rules for Startups Startups are powered by their people more than any claim to a reputation, an established corporate structure, or any other resource readily available to big corporation budgets.  As such, they have to be very careful when it comes to their hiring guidelines.  Below are four essential rules that startups should keep in mind when it comes to hiring if they want to avoid superfluous employees.

1. Identify from the start the positions that require people with more experience. 

As a startup working on a budget, you won’t be able to hire dozens of people across the board, but you should have one or two team members with stellar credentials to bring to the table.  Just assigning them whatever role is open isn’t wise though – you have to put them in roles that deserve their expertise.

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5 Reasons Why the Carrot is Better Than the Stick

When it comes to motivating your employees, there are two main methods of achieving high levels of productivity: the carrot and the stick. Whilst using the ‘stick’ method typically sees workers having to meet specific KPIs (key performance indicators) or risk facing the sack, losing a portion of their bonus or working overtime to deliver what you need, the ‘carrot’ method instead provides workers with specific rewards. These rewards may be end of year bonuses after annual reviews and smaller incentives throughout the year. As suppliers of many reward-based corporate hampers, we thought we’d take a look at why the carrot method of motivation is proving to be so effective in the workplace.

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3 Important Investments to Make in Your Business

For any business owner, sustainability and growth are always top of mind. You want to invest in growth while realizing a positive return. As you contemplate your long-term goals, here are the top three investments to consider:

1. Technology infrastructure – It’s important to operate off a scalable technology platform – one that enhances employee performance. Because technology impacts every sector of your business, it’s important that it provides a simple and flexible experience for your team members so that they can maximize efficiency.

Keeping up with cutting edge trends that you can implement first in your industry is a great way for your company to stay ahead of the curve and stand out. Don’t be afraid to take risks!
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How to Attract and Keep Talented Employees

Just as job seekers have trouble finding quality job opportunities, business owners have a similar struggle in finding and holding onto talented employees. In order to keep employee turnover to a minimum, it helps to create a positive work environment that not only attracts loyal employees but make them want to stick around as well, and if you’re wondering how to improve your employee success rate, here are a few tips to get you on the right track.
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3 Tips for Managing Office Relationships

Office romances. What’s an employer to do?

Valentine’s Day is this week and quite fittingly, we turn our thoughts to the ever sensitive subject of office romance. And whether or not it’s company culture to frown on personal relationships in the workplace or to look the other way, they do happen.  Strong bonds develop when employees work long hours together— and nowhere is that more true than in the intense environment of a small business or start-up. Couple that with social media platforms that keep us connected to our co-workers 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and you have the ingredients for office romance.

So the question is, how should you handle it?  Look the other way in the hopes that either the relationship will be short-lived and others won’t notice or that one of the employees in the relationship will leave the company and/or department?  Or wait until the relationship turns sour and either you are dealing with a sexual harassment complaint or other employee relations issues as employees “take sides” or claim “unfair advantage”?  And what about employees losing focus on work projects as they deal with their relationship issues that have spilled over from their personal lives into their work lives? Continue reading

4 Benefits of Promoting Within Instead of Hiring New Employees

When it comes to business growth, having the ability to create new assignments and expand on current roles within your company is vital to its overall success. When this happens, a business is forced to either recruit new talent or promote from within. This can be a tough choice, particularly when you have highly skilled and dedicated employees competing for rank in your organization versus the undiscovered talent that is out there in need of a chance on the job market.

Succession planning is the practice of educating, mentoring, and promoting current employees so that they can increase productivity and growth for a business. In many cases, this method can be far more efficient than hiring new staff. Continue reading

4 Hiring Tips for Small Business and Franchise Owners

Intelligent business owners recognize that their most important asset is their team. Your team is the face of your company to the customer and the ambassadors of your brand.

Here are four important things to consider when hiring your staff:

  1. Hire, train and fire based on your values. Once you establish the values of your organization, it’s important that those hired actually live and demonstrate those values. If they can’t, won’t or don’t—move ‘em on out.  They could be an amazing fit for another business and won’t undermine the type of culture you want. Continue reading

Small Business Owners: Give the Gift of Community for the Holidays

As another holiday season is upon us, it’s important to remember everyone involved with your business, and recognize their contributions in a meaningful way. In short, acknowledge the team of people that make it possible to run a successful small business. Here are some simple ways you can recognize their contributions: Continue reading

Hey Entrepreneur! What’s Your Company Culture?

An entrepreneur starting and growing a company is faced with many management decisions.  You have already settled on a product and are working to expand your customer base.  Great thought is given to developing your product or service to meet the demands of that increasing customer base.  You consider marketing channels and are beginning to create an infrastructure which allows for company growth.  But, aside from the product or service you provide, what will be your company culture? Continue reading