Companies don’t make the people, the people make the company. Stephen R. Covey said “Always treat your employees exactly as you want them to treat your best customers.” Simply put, your employees are your first customers. If you can’t treat them right, how do you intend to treat your external customers right? It is impossible! A major reason why businesses fail is breakdown of trust between employees and employers. Once your employees lose trust in you, forget it, you are only keeping them for another employer. And when they leave, they leave with your customers.
It is therefore important to make deliberate and conscious decisions and policies to invest in your employees. They are your greatest assets. Without them, your services will be poor, your processes will be truncated and your controls will fail. Train them. Spend time to mentor. Create a mentorship scheme in your company. Engage them constructively such that they keep looking forward to the next working day. We often fear losing our employees after training, yes, you will lose some but you will gain many more, because the ones you lose will be your brand ambassadors. You can have a reasonable bond arrangement if necessary. Just focus on building your human capital, you will be amazed at the results.
One of the worst languages is when an employer says ‘I can get a hundred replacements for you immediately.’ Or ‘you are of no use to me.’ If he is useless to your business, then you have failed in making him a useful asset, so your business is also useless to him! An asset will be useless if not properly used, maintained or deployed. Likewise your human capital! It is the language of an employer who is completely ignorant about factors that engender business success. The truth is you will never build a team if you reason that way, and it is your team that will build the company. So treat them right. Pay them on time. If you treat them right, they will put in more than expected. I have been there before. I saw it happened severally. Even, if your business is undergoing challenges that may affect their pay, be open and let them know. You will be surprised at the sacrifices some of them will offer to make. Employees will only sacrifice for an employer who has sacrificed for them. Don’t demand for what you have not given.
The worst thing that has happened to our economy is the plethora of businesses that have no business being in business! They keep employing people when they can’t even pay those on ground. It is morally irresponsible for you to lure someone to leave his or her former employer to join your company and then you can’t pay him or her! It is sacrilegious! There are so many businesses like this in our nation today and this is why we have broken labor force, a largely predatory labour force, ‘unhealthily’ mobile. They are afraid. They can’t trust their employers to keep to their covenants! We must stop this dangerous trend. I believe we have reached that stage where a sort of Employment Bureau should be put in place, where job seekers can check on the status of a company before joining such company. The time is ripe for it.
So please understand that life is a seed. The state of your business today, is an harvest of what you sowed. You will reap what you sow. If you invest in your employees, they will invest in your business. So, the Choice is yours!
God bless us all.
Good morning Africa!
Good morning Nigeria!