25 Jul

Rewarding Your Staff Goes A Long Way

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 25.07.13 by John Meloche

Trophy2In yesterday’s blog, we revisited the concept of rewarding your staff for jobs well done. It’s important to remember that your team of employees is a huge reason that your company is the success that it is – or can be. Without them, where would you be? So while we always champion the cause of providing your customers with promo gifts, don’t forget to save a few for your top workers.

Of course, there are many other ways that you can reward your staff members. As pointed by Kentin Waits on OpenForum.com, there are a variety of things you can do to show your appreciation – and many of them don’t have to cost you a cent. Naturally, there will be times when throwing your money around the office – so to speak – will serve in the best interests of your company. Let’s look at a few ideas.

Throw a party. Plan your surprises, says Waits. In other words, have your staff clear their schedules for a couple of hours one afternoon for a “meeting” that is really a party. No appointments, waiting clients or calls to return – just some fun moments for employees to relax, enjoy their time together and reflect on the achievements of the entire team. Your party will be hugely motivational.

Treat a lunch bunch. Not much of a party animal? Treat an entire department to lunch, suggest Waits. You can even recognize a single employee by making a group reservation for that person and five close friends or colleagues. What you’ll find is that rewarding top-performing staff members with things that may hit home personally will not soon be forgotten. Their loyalty is yours for good.

Let them decompress. Give your top employees some true relaxation by offering them gift certificates for a spa visit. This is quite the reward. Who couldn’t use a massage after a long and grueling project that required putting in extra hours? Suggests Waits: “to sweeten the deal, don’t let those muscles tense up again afterwards—give them the afternoon off.”

Make them a member. Waits also suggests you consider covering the cost of a year’s membership for an association of the employee’s choice. As he notes, annual fees can be “daunting”. You increase the value of one’s life when you provide him or her with a greater opportunity to enjoy it. As Waits reminds us, “this sort of reward not only thanks your employee, it can create valuable business connections down the road.”

How often to you actually utter the words “thank you” to your team members? Make it a habit. And do it in writing too. Handwritten notes are great signs of appreciation that haven’t lost their touch in this digital-crazed world. Make true human connections with your staff members and they will work even harder for you. Your reward to them is declaring how valuable they are to you on a regular basis.

It’s all about how specific you get. Be sure to let your employees know why they are being thanked. Pinpoint the things that you believe constitute a job truly done well. Let your workers know what sets them apart from others. Encourage them to keep working hard by letting them know that their efforts will always be recognized. Such rewards will only reward you back in the long run.

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21 Jun

Bringing Your Business Out Of Its Slump

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 21.06.13 by John Meloche

slumpIn yesterday’s blog, we began to take a look at a UK-based article from The Guardian, written by entrepreneur, Gem Misa. In it, she explains that dealing with setbacks is a part of business. However, business owners who allow for pitfalls to bury their companies are missing out on the many benefits that come with strong senses of perseverance. It’s impossible for things to always go your way.

Overcoming hardships is the best way to learn how to be a master in your field. Having had tough experiences herself, Misa writes of a few ways that business owners can strive past the strife and become champions in their respective markets. In today’s blog, we’ll pick up where we left off yesterday and peruse through a few more helpful tips on how to bounce back from bad times.

Spend modestly – if you can do it yourself, do it. Sometimes, you just have to get things done yourself. Especially if you’re struggling to come up with the start-up costs to run your new business, you may not be able to hire staff immediately. In many cases, entrepreneurs are their own secretaries, PR representatives, promo directors and blog writers. The key is not to spend too much too early.

Get out of your comfort zone. Some business owners get themselves into trouble simply because they are too lazy or impatient to handle the so-called boring parts of the business. “You must remember that this is your business,” writes Misa, “and any hiccups or failures can only be blamed on yourself.” Understanding all aspects of the business will help you in the long run. Your staff shouldn’t be able to outsmart you anyway!

When someone says no, get creative. You’ve heard the advice “never take ‘no’ for an answer” before, right? Same rule applies here. Misa suggests that you not take it personally, and instead become more personable. To get her own salad dressing business off the ground, she sent summer picnic baskets to retailers who wouldn’t return her calls. The result: booked business meetings!

Learn how to harness the power of the crowd. You may need additional funding along the way to grow your business. In fact, you definitely will. But that doesn’t mean the banks will be willing to support you. You may need other sources of financing so prepare to join forces with sponsors or other businesses that may be willing to help promote you if you promote them. Again, being creative will be important.

These tips can help any business owner in any sector. Take the Toronto Blue Jays, for example. It’s no secret that the Synergy Marketing staff is comprised of some big fans of the team. After all, our offices are headquartered in Toronto. So the excitement for the season to begin was at an all-time high this past off-season. With many new acquisitions, the Jays seemed poised to become champions for the first time in twenty years.

And then the season started. The Jays began to experience a wild and unfortunate combination of injuries and poor play. As a result, they have been a losing team all season long. But wait! As of today, the Blue Jays are on an 8-game winning streak and seem to be on their way to even greater success. Never say die, people. It’s not over until it’s over. With this attitude, you’ll be the best at bringing your business out of its slumps.

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