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HR things successful employers do

Wondering why some businesses seem to have fewer employee issues? Here’s a list of HR things successful employers do.

I’m fortunate to work with clients across a diverse range of employment sectors.  Our biggest client? 32,000 employees and in business since 1933. Smallest? 2 people and registered in July this year. Irrespective of size or how long in operation, I’m always interested to observe how employees are managed across my client group and whether there might be any common factors when it comes to tactics and strategies that keep people happy and the workplace as drama-fee as possible. Here’s a list of 10 things I’ve witnessed successful employers have in common:

1. Simple, current and clear cut documentation: these define your expectations, provide direction and ensure each person in your team is aware of their obligations. Bonus feature: the time saving foundation of non-ambiguous employment documents when you have to manage underperformance. The secret sauce? Documents tailored to your business. Not someone else’s.

2. Role model your culture: this starts from the top…and that means you and your senior team. Be fair, respectful, face up to the responsibilities of your role, admit when you’re wrong and, if you’re really adventurous, ask for employee feedback and be prepared to act on it.

3. Well trained team leaders: when this level of your organisational structure is competent, confident and capable in managing their direct reports, you’ll find you only have to deal with five per cent of employee problems, not fifty plus. That’s time back to you.

4. Keep everyone on the loop: I’ve lost track of the number of times I’ve heard a version of: “I know there’s management meetings but we never hear anything about plans for the future”. Freely communicate the things your people should know: employees who are aware where you intend to take your business will typically align their performance and actions to this.

5. Listen to your people and ask for suggestions: recognise even the least experienced of your team has ideas and opinions. You never know what gold you might uncover.

6. Recognise and reward those who go over and above. And “reward” doesn’t necessarily mean with money.

7. Hold everyone accountable: few workers intentionally come to work to fail. But occasionally we all do. Good managers know how to address underperformance in an equitable, timely and objective manner without these discussions becoming confrontational or emotional.

8. Know when to cut your losses: sometimes an employee just doesn’t work out. Could be for any number of reasons: most often a poor hiring decision or simply not the right cultural fit for your existing team. Thinking something (or someone) is magically going to improve if you just leave things go rarely works. Bite the bullet and act…and see point 1 above for your best support resource.

9. Hold regular informal discussions with each person in your team: utilised well, your people are your greatest source of competitive advantage. Talk to them. Regularly. Find out what they need to be better and happier in your workplace. If you can’t figure out how to make time for a 15-20 minute informal chat at least monthly with each person, diarise it. Like you would for any mission-critical business function.

10. Conduct periodic formal performance appraisals: annually is OK, 6-monthly is better. And your process works best when it comprises a review of the individual’s historic performance as well as setting future-facing goals and objectives.

Like to know more? Bare Bones Consulting is your Gold Coast HR Consultant specialising in tailoring effective human resources solutions to your business. No subscriptions, no lock-in contracts and the Bare Bones Consulting representative you meet at the outset is the person you’ll deal with every time.

We can identify fix elements of your HR function that aren’t working, update your documents or design the new ones from scratch if you’re yet to get this part of your structure underway…at a value for money price. Sound good? Make the decision to be one of those successful employees with fewer employee issues today: call Greg on 0401 279 065 for a chat or shoot us a message here.

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Note: Bare Bones Consulting provides HR services for employers. Employees seeking advice on workplace concerns should contact the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94.