Thursday, August 31, 2006

Safety Training, Workplace Safety

One of the best things you can do to improve the performance of your employees is to provide them with a safe working environment.

No employee can perform to his full potential if he fells unsafe. If he is constantly worried about getting hurt, sick or fired, he will not be completely focused on his job performance.

I have added a new section to my web site covering Workplace safety and Safety Training. I will be adding more references and resources so check back often

Also, if you need some custom designed safety procedures or just some ideas on how to keep your employees safe contact me to arrange a consulting agreement.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Your expectations of employee performance

Your employees will always respond to what you expect from them. Especially your negative thoughts.

If you are trying to improve your employee performance you must first work on your expectation of your employees.

If you expect your employees to steal from you, then you will find that you have an employee theft problem. If you expect them to be lazy, you will find some who are.

If you expect them to be late for work, just install a time clock and collect your evidence.

As a good manager, you should always consider potential problems and develop solutions to the problems before they develop. Don't waste your time worrying about what might happen because that is the surest way to create that problem.

Sometimes I wish it was not so easy to turn my thoughts into reality. Read more here...

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Policies and Procedures

The importance of written procedures.

Establishing and maintaining clear written policies and procedures is one of the key factor is having a successful business. Even if you have just one employee, you need written procedures to prevent mistakes.

Most people it seems would rather eat dirt than sit down and write a policy and procedure manual, but when you understand the benefits of having one, you will realize it is worth the effort. Also, eating dirt may be good for you according to the sea salt advocates.

Some of the Benefits of written procedures:
  • having written procedures prevent mistakes
  • Having written procedures frees your creativity
  • Having written procedures saves time
  • Having written procedures ensures consistency and improves quality
  • Having written procedures will free you from worry about your employee's decisions

The more detailed the procedure the better. Instead of telling employees things not to do and inspiring a negative emotional environment, tell them exactly what you expect them to do and when. If they know exactly what to do and how to do it then the other stuff will often take care of itself.

Let's that a dress code for example. Instead of making a long list of things people can't wear, make a policy that describes acceptable dress. Be as detailed as possible about the kind of image you want your employee to portray and why it is important that they portray that image. Allow some freedom of expression and you employees with be happy to comply.

Having clear written procedure will also help you in the case there is ever any disagreement. You simple point to the written procedure and make sure that it is consistently applied. If you allow exceptions to the policies write them down as well.

But generally having clear, detailed written procedure and policies will avoid many workplace communication problems before they begin.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Employee training workshops

Planning an employee training workshop?

Before you plan an employee training workshop you need to consider what you goals are.

Are you simply trying to fulfill a training hours requirement of some government or industry regulation? If so, let the employees know and make it a fun time together. Play some games and provide some snacks. Don't try to fool the employees into thinking the event is more important that you think it is. They will see right through you.

But if you really wan them to learn something, make sure you have a carefully thought out plan.

Make sure you first explain why it is important to the employee to learn the material. Not just why you want them to learn it. They really don't care about that, they just want to know how learning the material will help them do their jobs.

Also, assume that your employees want to do a good job. The ones who don't care will not listen anyway so don't bother gearing a class toward them. Focus on those who want to learn and consider replacing the others with motivate employees. See some of my previous posts for how to get those.