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New Year’s Resolutions for Your Small Business

December 30th, 2016 Comments off
New Year 2017 Idea Concept on Chalkboard Background

It’s that time again when people think about what they want to quit doing, start doing, or do better in the next 12 months. As a small business owner, developing such resolutions for your company can help 2017 be your best year ever. Here’s a look at a few to consider:

Get your staff involved in growing your business

Share your vision for the company’s future with team members. They’ll get excited about the part they can play in helping your small business to thrive. Point out ways everyone can contribute, such as networking more and sharing company activities on social media. Send your most outgoing brand ambassadors to industry conferences, job fairs, trade shows, and the like to talk about your awesome small business and why they like working there. And if your employee referral system is weak or nonexistent, resolve to create a strong one. This recruiting method has a proven record of generating a high quality applicant pool.

Solidify onboarding procedures

Vow to cut down on costly turnover by developing a thorough, consistent onboarding process for new hires. Positive experiences early on at a job can impact the decision to stay, so create a formal plan to assist new hires in feeling welcome among your close-knit staff. Minimizing paperwork, creating a checklist of materials to have ready on someone’s first day, and assigning an office “buddy” can go a long way toward helping a new employee become engaged and productive.

Check yourself out online

If you don’t know what potential customers and employees are learning online about your small business, it’s time to find out. Do a Google search and see what comes up. Read reviews of both your products or services and of how past and present employees rate your workplace. Recreate a job seeker’s experience by getting out your smart phone or tablet and actually looking at what appears when you try to apply for a position with your small business. If you become frustrated or confused, so will others. And if you haven’t updated your website in some time, resolve to jazz it up. Prospective talent loves to see examples of company culture, so consider adding a blog, videos of office events, or profiles of team members.

Make the difficult moves

Finally, if you spent 2016 shying away from some of the uncomfortable tasks that come with being a small business leader, promise to take charge in the new year. Stop agonizing and just terminate that morale-zapping employee who hasn’t heeded your warnings. Hand out those employee satisfaction surveys, even if you fear they may come back with things you don’t want to hear. Deliver negative feedback when necessary instead of hoping problems will go away on their own. When you commit to facing the music, your small business stands a much better chance of reaching the top of the charts.


Want more small business advice? Find the answers you’re looking for at CareerBuilder’s small business advice and resources page.

Are Your Employees Planning to Leave in 2017?

December 27th, 2016 Comments off
Person silhouette standing in 2017 on the hill at sunset

Now may not be the time to get too attached to workers. According to a new CareerBuilder survey, more than 1 in 5 workers (22 percent) are planning to change jobs in 2017. Among younger workers, the numbers are even higher. More than a third of workers ages 18 to 34 (35 percent) expect to change jobs in the next year.

Employee retention is critical to the long-term health and success of your business. So what can you do to make workers stay?

When asked what extra perks would make them more willing to join or stay with a company, the most popular choices workers pointed to include:

  • Half-day Fridays: 40 percent
  • On-site fitness center: 27 percent
  • The ability to wear jeans: 23 percent
  • Daily catered lunches: 22 percent
  • Employee’s own office: 22 percent

While you may not be able to offer everything on the above list, below are a few strategies you can use to retain your talent in 2017 and beyond:

Provide a competitive benefits package. You’re competing for clients and for employees. Flex schedules, health insurance and specialty insurance (such as disability and life) make a difference when it comes to attracting and keeping employees.

Create an open and honest work environment. Give feedback on work performed and be willing to listen, really listen, to the concerns of your employees.

Get employees’ input: If you want to keep your best and brightest people, involve them in the decision-making process. Not only will it serve to provide different perspectives that can lead to smarter decisions, it will also boost morale,

Provide productivity tools: Ensuring your employees have access to the tools and information they need helps ensure they can do their job more productively.

Recognize and reward good work: Monetary bonuses are always nice, but recognition of a job well done goes a long way to creating good will and loyalty. The most powerful recognition is specific. For example, “good job” is acceptable, but “good job on the rebrand project” is much better.

 

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