Author: Lysa Lessieur
Clearly, you’re rocking this business thing. You are the American Dream incarnate. You, are a Super Star.
But are you finding that there’s more work to do than there are hours in the day? It might be time to increase your headcount. It’s normal to feel apprehensive when you’ve grown faster than you anticipated or to feel unprepared for what managing a staff might be like in 2017. We want to help alleviate some of your concerns by giving you a few tips for how the landscape has changed in the workplace.
DID SOMEONE SAY TPS REPORTS?
Building your business from an idea you came up with in the middle of the night, to an actual operating long-term success is no easy task. While growth is always the goal, growing too quickly can lead to your inability to keep up with employee needs, but grow too slowly and you might not make payroll.
Today’s work environment is substantially different than it was a mere 10 years ago. Benefits such as in-house daycare, paid paternity leave, flex-time, working remotely and hired contractors are the new landscape. Gone are the days when an employee clocked in at 9 am and clocked out at 5 pm. We’ve become a society where people’s jobs often bleed over into their personal lives.
Remember the office set from the movie “Office Space”, where rows of workers are typing away and sitting at their desks the entire day? Totally a thing of the past now. Today, if a worker is physically at their desk even 50% of the day, that’s unusual. Productivity no longer needs to be measured by how long you sat at your desk, it’s really just focusing on the results being obtained.
TECH FOR THE WIN
Technology has opened up opportunities for businesses to truly show how much they value and respect their employee’s needs.
Experts have seen impressive increases in productivity when workers are given flex-time and remote access. According to a ConnectSolutions Study, “77 percent of remote workers get more done in fewer hours thanks to fewer distractions like meetings, conversations, and noisy coworkers”. It allows employees to work at the times they are most productive and in an environment they are comfortable with. Individual or team check-ins can be done with the latest video, phone or messaging technology and apps. Given the chance to meet the needs of their life outside of the office, most employees become even more vested in the company that places such value on their personal needs. This is, however, contingent upon the individual, their personal discipline and the policies stipulated by the employer.
Additionally, it cuts expenses for the employer who has remote workers. People working from home do not require employers to pay for office space, equipment, heating/cooling, electricity and certain types of insurance. “According to Global Workplace Analytics, employers can actually save over $11,000 per half-time telecommuter per year, which is a lot of money when you think about all 3.7 million employees who currently work from home at least half the time”. Sick and personal time off decreases as well. These studies seem to show that while the productivity argument can be manipulated, the decrease in overall expenses to the employer are without dispute. By giving employees the freedom to work remotely, productivity increases, expenses decrease and you’ll have a much healthier team to work with.
IT’S NOT FLYING CARS, BUT THIS IS THE NEW REALITY
As you are beginning to grow in numbers, approach your plans for scaling your workforce by thinking of what you want your culture to be five years down the road. Be very careful to not get stuck in the past with how you approach your employees and their needs. Stay on top of the new trends in business models, technology and employee benefits. Do your best to bring new employees into the conversation and you will be rewarded with reminders of why you hired these amazing people to begin with. A team that works and plays well together is the most profitable asset available to you.
Want practical ways to overcome common mistakes in the workplace? Check out this list of the 17 biggest mistakes we see leaders make with their teams.
We’d also love to talk to you about how our Virtual Assistants might be able to help!