Happy Hours, Happy Shop
It’s no secret that high turnover rates cost your business, in more ways than one: lowered productivity, higher training costs, recruiting costs…the list goes on and on. But before you break out in a cold sweat, try these simple tips and tricks to keep employees happy, satisfied, and working for you longer.
Give Them a Break
Set up a cozy break room with some music, maybe a few free treats and some nice chairs for relaxing in between jobs.
Dial Up the Comfort
Brighten things up by adding lighting and organizing the room to feel more ‘zen’. Make it a space they’re comfortable in.
Keep it Clean
Whether you clean things yourself, or set up a rotating schedule, make sure the place stays tidy and pleasant.
Encourage Speaking Up
Promote an environment where employees can openly contribute ideas and be part of growing the shop.
Get Their Input
Routinely ask for their ideas and recognize and reward the ones that work best.
Break Out In Groups
Foster teamwork and a spirit of collaboration. Assign teams of 3-4 to tackle issues and make improvements.
Get Freebies for Good Work
Watch ears perk up the second you shout ‘free food.’ Simple things like treats, cookouts, or group outings demonstrate your appreciation. If you want to step it up—hand out gift cards monthly to the top performers.
Host a Meal
Give away a free dinner quarterly to employees and spouses.
Recognize and reward accomplishments publicly. Let employees know what specific actions earned rewards and who contributed most.
Consider Flex Time
A scheduling system that lets employees start and end at varying times, rather than the classic 9-5. This allows employees to work a schedule that fits their lives better.
Sponsor a Family Event
Once or twice a year host a family-oriented activity, like a fishing trip, picnic, or a baseball game. Take time to meet your staff’s families so they know you respect their home life.
Let Parents be Parents
Kids get sick, get in trouble or have the inevitable snow day. A parent needs to be there. Be understanding and allow staff to run out for family emergencies.
Be Their Teacher
Organize meetings every month or two where you teach a course on a new skillset. Invite industry reps to come in and showcase new products and solutions.
Promote From Within
When it comes time to hire a new manager or higher-level position, try to promote from your pool of employees. This instantly makes your shop an opportunity for career growth.
Take Time to Review
Conduct performance reviews consistently. These reviews create plans for improvement, recognition for accomplishments, and provide rationale for wage decisions.
Ask What They Like
Start your questions on a positive note and ask what’s going well. That way you can keep on doing what works.
Don't Fear the Bad
While good feedback can give you that ‘I did good’ glow, negative feedback is often more helpful. Find out what isn’t working by asking questions like: What’s important to you, working here? Or what would you change/improve?
Take Their Suggestions to Heart
Pick 2 or 3 items to work on and follow up with employees on how they feel the changes are going. Get them involved in making improvements.