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Establish your Culture Early In A Start-Up

Posted on March 25, 2015
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Establish your Culture Early

Getting a business off the ground is challenging especially in the early days when you are on your own and are responsible for everything. In those days, you have to wear many hats. One minute you are doing marketing, the next accounts it is all a whirlwind. Finally, you realize that you can’t keep all of the balls in the air and take on your first employee. It is a great relief, but in no time, you have turned your new employee into a jack of all trades putting a huge amount of pressure on them. Without realizing it, you are creating a negative culture that is going to lead to high staff turnover that will hold you back.

All successful businesses value their staff and the vast majority of the fastest growing start-ups put employee motivation front and centre and do so from the very beginning. Staff that know that they are valued outperform undervalued staff every time. They are more engaged with the business, enjoy their work and are enthusiastic. When you need them to go that extra mile, they are ready and willing to do so.
There are several ways to engage your employees. Here are a few of the easiest ways to do it:

A Bonus Scheme

For start-ups bonus schemes work well. Giving staff a share of the profits makes a huge difference and it is an easy scheme to administer, so it is perfect for start-ups.

The simpler the scheme is the better. Putting aside a small percentage of the profits and sharing it evenly amongst all staff once a year works well for many small firms. It can be as little as 1% of the profit made.

Later when you go public, you can easily change this up to a share related scheme. Some firms do both.

Regular Assessments

Setting aside time to talk to your employees on a one on one basis and setting clear targets and goals is a good way of encouraging an open and honest working culture. At least twice a year you should sit down and review progress.

It is important that these targets and goals are measurable and that they are achievable and that they have been agreed between you and your employees. Setting unrealistic goals or forcing employees to accept targets that they do not feel are achievable can easily create a negative rather than a positive environment.

Employee Engagement Awards

Employee engagement awards create a positive culture in the workplace. Celebrating and rewarding your staff on a regular basis is a great way to motivate them and encourage innovation.

Studies have shown that engaged employees are 67% more likely to exceed their targets and 36% more productive. Importantly, they are also four times more likely to stay with your firm. This is vital for a growing organization. The last thing you need is for those who understand your business to leave you just when you need them most.

There are numerous ways to set up and run these engagement schemes, which is why they are perfect for every type of firm including start-ups. There are some great agencies out there that will take care of the whole process for you and do so for a very low per employee cost.

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