Are Small Business Owners Doing Enough to Motivate Employees?

Many small business owners may now be looking to expand hiring efforts in the near future thanks to the strength of the recovering economy. However, one issue many entrepreneurs may encounter is that their current workers might not be doing their jobs as efficiently as possible, and taking steps to correct this issue may be vital.

Independent company owners, and in particular those who might be relatively new to managing a number of employees, may be able to reduce their need to bring on another worker – and thus incur a number of costs including those for more expensive small business insurance – by finding ways to make the ones they have do their jobs more efficiently, according to a report from All Business. The problem for many entrepreneurs is that in many cases, roles can become extremely muddled when there's a lot of work to do and relatively few people to do it, because everyone may be asked to pitch in. The resulting confusion can result in a loss of smoothness that the owner might have intended, and taking steps to figure out the best ways to get everyone back on track can have a major positive impact on morale and a company's bottom line.

Perhaps the best way to start is for owners to make clear to all workers under their employ exactly what is expected of them in their job, the report said. This does not preclude them working on other projects when needed, but letting them know what they should be sticking to for the most part may make them happier and perform better over the course of time.

It might also be helpful at this time to refine the ways in which people at the company communicate, the report said. Whether it's the owner or executives dealing with employee matters, or workers talking to each other about certain issues, having defined channels for communication about company matters can clear up a lot of confusion. Fortunately, there are also a lot of options out there at this point, including free instant messaging services, specialized software, and something as simple as email or phone calls. When workers are using all of these tools, there can be confusion and missed connections, but if they're all on the same one, or know the proper protocols for how to go up the chain when one communication attempt doesn't work, these problems can be alleviated.

What owners can do about goals
Of course, improving communication and letting people know what their jobs entail can only go so far, because sometimes owners have to make sure employees know exactly what's expected of them, the report said. For this reason, telling workers what they need to do, and when, can be very important to making a company run smoothly and bring a sense of accountability to workers, who might otherwise not know exactly what's needed of them in particular.

However, when doing this, it's important for owners to be encouraging; working at a small business often comes with long hours and lots of stress, so it's vital to let workers know that they and their contributions are incredibly valuable and critical to the growth of the company, the report said. It may, for this reason, also be a good idea to encourage as much camaraderie and enjoyment among employees as possible, such as with company outings or game nights.

Finally, owners need to also be accountable to themselves, and make sure they're doing all they can to keep companies financially flexible. This may include finding more affordable small business insurance options including those for general liability insurance to give them some help with their bottom lines.