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StrategyDriven Talent Management Article

3 Ways of Taking Better Care of Your Team

As a business owner, it’s up to you to make sure that your employees thrive. Without them, your business would certainly not be where it is today – and, unless you take proper care of them, you might see them move elsewhere.

They could end up with one of your competitors instead, for example, which ensures them the kind of success that you could have enjoyed.

That’s why the best of kind of business owners focus on taking care of what really matters: their human resources. Here is a handful of ways on how you can do exactly this and be a great leader and boss for your team.

StrategyDriven Talent Management Article
 
#1 Be available

Being a great boss means that you’re not going out of your way to stay above your employees. If you’d prefer not to be liked by your team, however, this is probably the best way to go. Well-liked leaders know that getting to know them and being friendly means that they’re going to feel a bit more appreciated and liked.

Plus, it’s a good rule-of-thumb, in any way, if you want to be liked as a person in general.

Although business owners and managers usually have a lot to do, it’s actually all about the little things. Being available doesn’t mean that you constantly have to attend to their needs and keep an open door; it just means that you should try to stop for a chat every now and then.

Besides, everybody knows that the best kind of ideas and the most insightful conversations happen around the coffee machine these days. Chat with your team, talk about what they’re up to, and take an interest in their personal lives as well – that way, you won’t just be a well-liked manager, you’ll also be the go-to person for gossip around the office.

#2 Encourage learning on the job

While some people join your team and think they already know everything there is to know, others are aware that they should try to continue to learn. These are the people you should pay a bit of extra attention to as they might be very valuable to your company.

First of all, they’re showing motivation and drive by wanting to learn more – and, secondly, the knowledge they soak up will help your company to thrive and prosper as well. It’s not always that easy for employees to know where to start, though, and even if they mention that they’d like to learn a bit more, they might not know how to do it.

This is where your great management skills come in. Give them the tools to learn and they will definitely grab the opportunity if they’re serious about furthering their knowledge.

StrategyDriven Talent Management Article
 
There are many ways to do this, though, and it all depends on what they need to learn. If you’re taking onboard new employees or launching a whole new branch, it could be a good idea to get in touch with a virtual reality studio so that they get an in-depth understand of what their new surroundings will be like.

This is an investment that will continue to benefit you, by the way, as you can use the virtual reality video to introduce every new employee on your team. That way, they’re going to be properly informed by the time they start working – and you save both time and money on having to train them.

Another benefit to this is that you might get better results from them, in the beginning, than you would have had without the video. When they are able to immerse themselves during the training and get a real understanding of what they’re up against, it suddenly won’t feel that overwhelming when they start the job.

On the other hand, you might have a seasoned employee who wants to become a better public speaker or a better leader for their department. Treat your team to a seminar on public speaking, for example, or send them off for a course – their increased knowledge will definitely benefit your company as well.

#3 Reward hard work

Some employers seem to forget that hard work should be rewarded. You don’t have to praise individual employees in front of the whole team, though, rather than treating your entire team to some rewards when they’ve worked well together.

Take them out for a lunch on the company, for example, give them a gift card to show your appreciation, or do something fun together as a team. The idea is that you want to build a team that is strong together while also making sure that their hard work is being noticed.

Teams that are rewarded together tend to stick together as well – and, that way, you won’t have to look for any replacements too often. Think about other ways you can make sure that you’re attending to their needs as well; flexible working hours is proven to boost both productivity and motivation so it should be just what your team needs.

By getting to know them properly and understanding their personal lives as well, you’ll be able to point out who needs these flexible working hours more than others. Working from home is a great way of showing them that you understand how important their lives outside of work is, and they will definitely appreciate you more for it.

Although all of the great things you do for your employees is to make sure that your business continues to prosper, the key to being a good boss is actually to be friendly and empathetic. It might not be your ideal version of a boss, but it is your employees’ ideal version – and, at the end of the day, that’s what really matters.

StrategyDriven Marketing and Sales Article

Essential Elements Of An Awesome Landing Page

StrategyDriven Marketing and Sales Article
 
When you sit down to think of a new way to market for your business this year, one of the first things which might come to mind is creating a website which will share your story, your products and show people who you are. A website is a window to your business and many people upon hearing your name will search for you online in the hopes of getting a better understanding of your business. The landing page of a website is the most crucial thing of all to add to your site, and here is how to make a great one.

Links, links, links

When it comes to making a website which will connect you to your business and make sure that people can connect with all aspects of the business you will want to ensure that you places links all over the website which will help people to find what they are looking for. Links to social media channels can be placed in either the header or footer on every page and things such as links to other blog posts on your site can be added as you create new ones. You want to make it as easy for people to connect with you as possible.

Good navigation

Every website needs a good style of navigation to make it as easy as possible for people to move around the site to get to where they need to go. When it comes to planning a sitemap for your website and making sure that your customers can find pages easily you will want to make sure that the menu is in a prominent place at the top of the page and also that you have a search bar on the header so people can make a search to find what they need.

Stunning imagery

Images speak 1000 words, and images are the perfect way to breathe some life and character into an otherwise dull landing page. When you want people to visit your website you want them to see something they like and click through rather than leave the site and cause you a large bounce rate. Images can be exactly what you need to entice people into your website and make them want to know more. If you were visiting a website and you saw a page which had a recipe for cookies with no image, and another site with an image: which one would you want to explore? Images are the key to making a statement and the key to making people want to engage with your brand.

Featured posts

A great way to entice customers further into your website on the landing page is to add some featured posts on there which people can visit directly from the homepage. When choosing featured posts for your landing page make sure that you think about the season, what’s popular at the moment and which of your posts seem to be the most popular. 3 featured posts is usually enough and will cause people to want to stay and explore your website further.

Clever branding

When it comes to making yourself know to the world and getting people to recognise your brand and logo, you need to be smart about it and find a way to place your branding in as many places as possible. The header of your website will likely feature a logo and then you can add the logo to other parts of the landing page to really make people familiar with who you are and what you look like. It is a kind of subliminal message which should work wonders for your brand.

Amazing content

When it comes to making an amazing landing page and an engaging website in general, content is key. Content can be anything from images, videos, articles, social posts and more which you share with your audience to gain a response. Have a think about making a video to introduce your brand or demonstrate the use of a product and have this in a prominent place in the landing page. Video can be very engaging and an ideal way to keep people on your website for longer.

Good SEO

SEO is essential if you want to be successful on the internet and even though you can’t necessarily see SEO at work on your landing page, you should still take the time out to do it. Think about changing your meta title and description to include lots of keywords which suit what the website is about and what you can offer to your customers. Ensure that you have keywords all over the landing page in different places to make search engines rank you higher. It is a time consuming task to do but it is more than worth it for your exposure in the end.

A cohesive theme

When it comes to making your website the best it can possibly be you need to pick a theme and stick to it. Luckily, most CMS platforms such as WordPress have many themes you can choose from, and it means that you can have a consistent colour palette, font and design all throughout your website. Having a dynamic theme from the moment the customer steps into your world is crucial if you want to grab onto them and keep them interested.

Testimonials

One of the things which can sometimes be ideal to add to a landing page for your website are testimonials. If you have had customers in the past who have said wonderful things about your business and who would support you through anything, you can add their testimonials on the landing page to prove to new customers that your products and services are worth their money. Having reviews front and centre on your website shows the viewer that you have nothing to hide from them and it will immediately create a foundation of trust between you. The more testimonials you can add the better, and people will trust that you mean what you say and will be more likely to buy things from you.

Launching Your Business: How To Organize Your Operation

When you have a business idea, it’s only natural that you may sit on it for a while. Maybe you’re frightened of failure, or of going after your dreams and not really getting what you want? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. But if you have always wanted to run your own business, and you love the idea of making it work, then you have to jump in with both feet (or head first!). If your mind still isn’t convinced and you feel held back, then you may want to focus on organizing your way there. Because when you have the right plans in place and you really work to keep things organized, launching can seem so much easier. So here’s what you need to do.

1. Find The Right Location

So first of all, you need to think about your location. And finding the right business location really does matter. If you need a manufacturing unit, you’ll want to make sure that you have enough space, and that you’re in the best possible position to create. You may even want to just start small and clear out your garage space for this. Either way, you need the best possible place to work from.

2. Decide Between Managed Or Self-Service

If you’re setting up an office, one thing to keep in mind is where you want to have a serviced space or somewhere that juts your own. Managed offices mean that you have all of the bills and services included, even the cleaning! But if you rent a space yourself, you may need to set up all of the utilities, internet, and look after the place yourself. So it’s worth considering which will work out best for you.

3. Setup The Space

Then, you need to set up the space. Again, if you are going with an office, why not think about going with used equipment to get the price down? Even if you need an industrial or manufacturing space, you may be able to go for used equipment to get a better price too. But just be sure that the quality is where you need it to be to get the job done.

4. Invest In Your Machinery

However, if you do want to make sure that you can do the best possible job from the beginning, investing in the right machinery and manufacturing equipment is just so important. From niche specific unites to counting scales to quality control conveyors, make sure you’re happy with what you have. These are the things you need to run your business and create your product, so they have to be right.

5. Stick To Systems

Finally, one thing you may find, is that systems help you out tremendously here. When you’re working on a large scale and you have products to manufacture, or an operation line to set up, things need to run like clockwork. So, it’s going to be in your benefit to get processes that allow your production to be as efficient as possible, and ensure that you have a good quality control check in place. When this is all organized, you should find that launching is so much easier.

5 Problems Construction Businesses Will Inevitably Face

Of all the business sectors in the world, none are quite so tangible as construction. If you open a construction business, then your everyday life will be governed by a very physical reality. Unlike many modern businesses, which involve moving words and numbers on computers, construction is something that you can reach out and touch – and it’s inherently rewarding as a result.

Unfortunately, the many, benefits of working in construction are often somewhat weighed down by non-tangible, metaphysical problems. Thankfully, there are ways and means of navigating these issues, but you do need to be aware of the almost-inevitability that you will experience them. This is due to the fact that construction business owners may produce work that is inherently physical, but they will face a number of threats that are far less concrete – and it will be your job to navigate each of these situations when they occur.

So, without further ado, let’s examine the theoretical problems that your very practical construction business will inevitably experience at some point.

1) High employee turnover

Unfortunately, the construction industry is infamous for the high rate of employee turnover it tends to produce. There is no single reason for this high turnover rate, but it is a simple fact of life for construction businesses.

It would be wonderful to suggest that there are incredible solutions to ensure your business does not experience high turnover but, in truth, this would be misleading. There are, of course, things you can do to help reduce employee turnover, but these measures alone are unlikely to be sufficient. Instead, it is usually best to opt for a two-pronged approach: improve existing conditions, but also exist in a state of perpetual hiring, continually accepting applications for positions and building a list of potential future employees that you keep on file. Working together, these two measures should allow you to control the problem as best you can, and ensure you always have the staff you need to complete projects.

2) Unsuitable ground conditions

At the beginning of history, construction was incredibly simple: the earth was how it had been for millennia, and construction companies could trust the soundness and cleanliness of the soil. Unfortunately, thousands of years of human habitation has changed that, and modern construction companies will often find themselves facing issues with poor or even contaminated soil.

It is inevitable that, at some point in your time at the helm of a construction company, you will have to deal with problematic soil. Your best option is usually to work with a ground improvement specialist such as those at the Helitech Civil Construction Division and similar companies; these experts have a variety of techniques that can mean even the most difficult of soil can eventually be used for construction. While hiring a subcontractor for this work will lengthen the process somewhat, it can make possible building on soil you would usually dismiss, which opens up your possibilities for future development.

In anticipation of this inevitable issue, it may be worth fostering a relationship with a ground and soil improvement specialist from the start of your business. This ensures that when you inevitably encounter difficult ground conditions, you know exactly where to turn for the expert assistance that can allow you to continue a project as quickly and efficiently as possible.

3) Public discontent

The longer your business is in operation, the higher your chances of working on a project that draws the ire of the public. We have all seen activists demonstrating against the construction of a new building or shopping mall, and it is inevitable that your company will at some point be involved in a project that activists dislike.

In terms of managing this issue, realistically, there’s very little that is within your control. The best bet is to always work on projects that have full authorization and that have passed impact studies with flying colors, and it may also be worth checking social media to see if there is planned opposition to a construction project prior to agreeing to undertake the work.

However, even with these precautions, you may well find that you still find yourself working on a site that is subject to demonstrations. If (or when) this happens, your best plan of action is to leave the matter to the police. Engaging with activists will rarely end well, even if you’re in the right, so advise your employees to refuse to enter into conversations and seek appropriate help from the authorities.

Alternatively, if you suspect that fightback against a project you were intending to work on has become so fierce it will negatively impact your company, then you may want to consider withdrawal. The penalties for doing this will depend on your contract, but it’s worth examining this possibility, especially if you suspect the activists may well have a point – the negative publicity from continuing to work on the project could greatly outweigh the penalties you will face for walking away.

4) Workplace accidents

Construction is an inherently dangerous industry. From people working at height to the movement of heavy plant machinery, the risk of accidents is ever-present – and to an extent, this is something that you will need to accept.

However, accepting that accidents can happen does not mean that you are completely powerless in the situation. You do have an element of control when it comes to reducing and mitigating the risks involved in the industry, and examining your options in this regard can help to ensure your business – and your workers – are fully protected at all times.

First and foremost, prioritizing safety at all times is a must for construction companies. It’s important you trust that workers understand the risks of what they are doing, and that their health and safety awareness and training is also up-to-date. Regular meetings to refresh guidelines is a good way to do this, and helps to ensure that even the most experienced of workers is always aware of the risks of their occupation.

Secondly, it’s worth going above and beyond to ensure that your working practices align with regulatory requirements. Unfortunately, many business owners of all types tend to see health and safety rules as something of a bind, and will satisfy the minimum requirement and then move on. However, it’s worth noting that these rules are there for a reason, and if you seek to adhere to them, the chances are you will have a much safer working environment as a result. Ideally, you should seek to exceed the basic regulatory requirements, and also continually check back to ensure these are being adhered to by workers at all times.

Finally, there is an additional health and safety component that is often overlooked by construction business owners: stress. The more stressed your workers are, the more likely they are to experience an accident – and even the very best health and safety practices cannot help in this regard. It is therefore well worth considering implementing measures that are designed to keep workplace stress at a minimum. This should ideally involve a dual approach of managing stress on-site and also learning to identify the signs of stress in an employee.

5) Theft

Finally, theft is a constant threat in the construction industry. This is largely due to the nature of the work; sites are often left unattended for hours or even days at a time, and contain expensive equipment that is an all-too-tempting target for thieves.

Controlling this problem primarily involves ensuring site security at all times, but this alone is unlikely to fully solve the problem. As we have already discovered, a double-approach is often best, and the same applies to the theft issue: you should seek to protect your site, but also ensure you are fully insured for any losses that you do experience.

Unfortunately, obtaining insurance as a construction company is often easier said than done, and premiums can be incredibly expensive. In an effort to keep costs down, work with a broker to ensure you are only insured as far as you need to be – avoid comprehensive, catch-all policies that may provide coverage for instances that are irrelevant to your business. By ensuring you find the right policy for your company, the cost of the premium should be justified, and you’ll enjoy the peace of mind of knowing that your valuable equipment is protected if your on-site security measures fail.

In conclusion

The issue presented above can be uniquely challenging to a construction business, due in no small part to their constancy and their changeability. This can be difficult for construction business owners to cope with, as so much of their prior working life has focused on physical problems with absolute physical answers. Learning to adapt to more theoretical and conceptual challenges can be far more difficult – but it is, ultimately, well worth doing. Construction is a thriving, essential sector, and if you believe you can navigate the inevitability of the problems as mentioned above, it could be the perfect choice for your entrepreneurial ambition.

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article

What Are the Advantages of Buying Used Office Equipment?

When you need office equipment for your business, the temptation is to buy new every time. Have you ever wondered whether it’s really necessary? The truth of the matter is that generally, it’s not. The need for new equipment will eventually come to every business. It may be because you’ve redecorated, you’re moving offices, or you’re simply starting from scratch. If you’re looking for ways to save money, buying used or second-hand equipment is a very attractive choice. Aside from saving money, you may be wondering whether there are any other benefits worth considering. Here are a few to get you thinking.

Reliability

Used furniture will have already proved it’s up to the task and in many aspects, it will be flawless. It is often made up of floor models with minimal wear and tear. Anyone visiting your office will struggle to tell the difference between old and new. Buying new office equipment from the internet can be a risky business. There is no way for you to check the final finish and you can’t tell how strong and reliable a piece of furniture is from a picture.

Readily Available

Buy office equipment from a store in your local town or city and you could find yourself waiting weeks even months. This kind of store rarely keeps stock of such items and has to order them in for customers. A second-hand store will have everything available. You’ll be able to walk in off the street, pick out your items and have them delivered within a couple of days.

Better for the Environment

It’s a sad fact that used office equipment often ends up in landfills. It wouldn’t take much for it to be looking as good as new, but this is generally too much trouble for the owner. An easier option is for it to be put out for the trash. When you buy used equipment, you are saving it from such a sad fate. There will still be plenty of life left in it and much of it looks almost as good as new. Certainly much better than anything you’re currently using. Taking steps to do your bit for the environment is always an added bonus, too.

Cost Effective Alternative to Buying New

The price of used equipment is such a big benefit that it’s worth mentioning twice. Expect to pay as little as a quarter of the price. If you’re financing your purchases by taking out a loan, such as the one mentioned here: https://www.crediful.com/personal-loans/best-egg/, you’ll be able to buy so much more for the same money. The items you find yourself buying are often end of product lines, overstock, discontinued lines or office store floor models. They can also come from businesses that have gone out of business.

It’s worth mentioning the downsides of buying new so that you have a balanced picture. The selection of colors may be limited, as well as style and configuration. Identical pieces may be difficult to source if you want to fit out a large office space. However, the biggest disadvantage is that there will be no returns or warranty provided.