Whether you are a first-time business owner guiding your startup to profitability or a serial entrepreneur embarking on your latest adventure, building a great team will be critical to both your short-term success and the long-term sustainability of your business model. No entrepreneur, no matter how talented you may be, can build a great business entirely on their own.
If you want to succeed, you need to build a great team around you, but you need to do more than that. Every successful entrepreneur knows that rewarding their best performers is a critical part of their success, and they go out of their way to incentivize great performance.
You can learn a lot from those successful entrepreneurs as you build your own team. Whether this is your first business venture or your twelfth, learning the success secrets of your fellow entrepreneurs can boost the odds of your own success. Here are five ways entrepreneurs build great teams and reward their best team members.
1. Focus on Personal and Professional Growth
Entrepreneurs are constantly in motion, and so are their best employees. The best performers tend to be restless, always looking for new things to learn and new ways to contribute to the organization.
Successful business owners understand that tendency, and they work hard to nurture it. They provide ample opportunities for both personal and professional growth, from industry-specific seminars to team-building retreats. These growth-building opportunities do more than improve performance – they build loyalty, foster teamwork and help create a better and more responsive company.
2. Offer Freedom and Flexibility
Freedom and flexibility have become critical parts of the modern workplace. From telecommuting opportunities to job sharing, entrepreneurs are increasingly building flexibility into their hiring practices.
Creating a workplace where everyone is able to build their own work-life balance can be good for business. Happy employees are more likely to stick around, and in the case of your best workers, that is a very good thing indeed.
3. Be Generous with Feedback
Whether you are building a team of five or five hundred, the workers you hire need to hear from you. More importantly, they need to hear from you when they do something right – not just when they screw up.
The best bosses are generous with their feedback, both positive and negative. Letting your best workers know how they are doing and guiding poorer performers to do better can transform your existing team and take your budding business to the next level.
4. Seek Out Suggestions
No matter how great you are at running your business, you do not know everything. What sets the most successful entrepreneurs and business owners apart from the rest is the realization that they cannot know everything. The best business people know what they do not know, and they seek out suggestions from their staff to fill in the gaps.
Asking for suggestions and taking those suggestions seriously is a great way to build a solid team. When workers are engaged and appreciated, they are more likely to remain loyal, and that loyalty can translate into better business results and a more solid bottom line.
5. Nurture Disparate Skill Sets
The beauty of a great team is that everyone you hire brings a unique set of skills to the table. Some workers have a natural talent for math and statistics. Others are scientific and technical geniuses.
Identifying those disparate skill sets and nurturing those talents is key to successful team building. Finding out what everyone has to offer, not just from data on their resumes but from real-world performance as well, fosters teamwork, loyalty and cooperation.
No matter what type of business you are in, the team you build will make a world of difference in your success. Some entrepreneurs are natural team builders with an innate ability to find the right people and bring them onboard. Others are less talented in this area, but can still learn the necessary skills to build a great team. The tips listed above can help you create a team of talented professionals – one you can rely on to guide your business now and in the future.