So how does communicating with your team relates to working less? Let me explain. One of the things, in my last business that I sold 13 years ago, I thought we were communicating with the team, the staff.
You can call them staff, team, whatever works for you. And I thought we’re communicating all the time, but we weren’t. Not in a formalized manner. So we talked. Of course we chatted. I knew everyone.
We had good fun, everyone, I liked my staff. I didn’t like dealing with staff. I liked the actual staff, the people but the communication was sort of hap hazard.
Now it’s only years later that I realized this. If I had known at that time, I would have done something about it.
But when I started my newer business, Fire Protection Online, I didn’t want to have the trouble with staff. So I looked into other methods and I learned. I mean mainly from the Emyth book. Emyth by Michael Gerber. I think I said it before. You should read.
I learned about communication in there, and I learned some important lessons. And before this we still had staff problems.
Now I wasn’t dealing with the staff, because I’d reorganized it, this time around. I was, I was practicing what I’d learned before.
And I knew what to do, and I knew what not to do. But there were still clashes between staff members. So there’s always a little atmosphere. There’s always something going on.
But then, once I realized, we start, that we should communicate on a formal basis. And we should have regular meetings. And these are not, or probably not what you’re thinking.
If you’re thinking oh corporate, you work for a company where you have management meetings, you go in and you have all these long dreary meetings. These are not like that. These are one on one.
So for instance, anyone who reports directly to me, I would have a meeting with them, and we’ve got this up to a point where we actually have them once a week. You think over time they become less. But no, they’re once a week.
Iron Out the Problems
Once you start meeting with people, you start to iron out all the potential problems. You also get to talk about what they are doing and you get to talk about what you want done. Then it’s a 2 way street.
Remember you should always treat your staff with the respect that you give to anyone outside of work. Staff, team it doesn’t matter if they’re an outsourcer, or a contract staff, or directly employed or, it doesn’t matter. They are humans. Just the same as you.
So if you wish to delegate a task to them, explain why you want it to be delegated. Let them understand, let them ask questions, let them tell what, how they think it should be done. And then come to an agreement like you would with a friend. That’s how communication works.
Now once you do that, you can instruct people on what you are trying to achieve. You can tell them what you want done and you want, what your expectations are. They can tell you whether it’s possible. You can set deadlines in, but you can, it’s a 2 way street. You talk to each other.
There’s all sorts of ways that you can communicate. You can do it face to face, you can do this over the phone. You can do it via skype on audio only. Or on video, there are loads of ways nowadays, you can do it on a google hangout.
If you have a large dispersed team, a very popular communication tool is slack. Personally I have never got into slack because it’s always too busy but there are obviously, there are going to be ways of using it. It’s free, I think, I’m pretty sure that you qualify for a free level. But you should enable communication.
Once we started doing this in my business, all the conflicts disappeared. Because everything that bottles up over a time and builds up to a pressure cooker, burn and ready to burst out of steam. It all gets found out early on, and gets stopped in its tracks.
Remember people don’t come to work to cause problems. They need to earn some money. They want the job, they want their job to be enjoyable. Make it enjoyable. Talk to them. Talk to your team. And this flows all the way down the business level.
So if you have more staff, so for instance when I said about people reporting to you. You shouldn’t ever really have more than 5 people. Put my hand out at wrong place. 5 people reporting to you. Any more than that, it’s going to get a bit out of hand.
And then you need a supervisor or manager or whatever you need. Someone else to look after it, so trust your team, trust your members of staff.
Don’t automatically promote the ones who’ve been there the longest. Have someone else, have another layer of management.
And train them to be the same. They should communicate with the people that report to them. They don’t buy pass and come to you.
They report to their immediate manager, supervisor, etc. their immediate manager, supervisor, reports onto you or whoever it may be. But constant communication is important.
The other thing with the company culture, what you’re going to find is you need to have your why. I have been talking about it, especially in this month.
This is the just the starting point of your business, is realizing why you are in business. What you want to do. It is a story. It’s, in effect it’s the reason you started your business, and what you want to achieve.
It’s not what you do, it’s the why you’re doing this. So the why should be an answer to the question. Why are you doing this?
Communicate With Your Team
Once you get that, you can communicate this to your team. Once they get it, they no longer have a job. They are on the same mission as you.
This all sounds, might sound a bit hokey pokey but think about it. Think if you have a reason for going to work, why can’t they have a reason? A solid reason that does not involve the money. Then it’s going to be more enjoyable, because then it’s not work.
Then once they get this, they can communicate it to clients, and potential clients, customers, and then it’s a beautiful thing because life becomes so much easier. And this is all down to being honest. Remember I said keeping them in the dark, talk about numbers.
What are you scared of? If you’re making lots of profit, are you scared of telling them how much profit you’ll make because you’re not paying them enough.
Why not give them a little bonus? Why not create a staff bonus? They don’t have to share the 50% of profits. I am sure you can work out something.
If you are making loads of money, why not divide 10% of the profits amongst the staff, I think you’ll find they appreciate it. Why not reward them for the work? All of them? Everybody.
Even the cleaner does contributes to your business. May not be as obvious as the sales people, so think about that. But involve them. Tell them the numbers. If things are bad, don’t hide it. They know. If you want to help to improve, ask them. If they know the numbers, they’ll understand.
Remember communication is key. How are you communicating with your staff? How often? I recommend weekly. See how you get on.
Drive Time Podcast
Anyway this is a Thursday. Time for a Drive Time Podcast. We are reviewing the best ones. The best ones are always around. So today I am going to recommend the Ray Edwards Show.
Ray Edwards is a copywriter. But don’t, if you are not interested in copywriting, don’t let that put you off because Ray Edwards is an excellent business person.
Who, copywriters are genius business people. They just are. He’s also an incredibly nice bloke. Now quite a few are incredibly nice, Ray is.
Go look up the Ray Edwards Show. Listen to a couple of episodes, you’ll see what I mean. You seriously will love it.
Now if you want to know everything about live streaming, book in tomorrow. We have live streaming Katya. She’s got a lot to say and she shows you how easy it can be. I’ll be back soon.