Do you want employees or energized people who truly understand your vision? Do you want to hire qualified professionals or loyal individuals who share your entrepreneurial spirit and are as invested as you are in the business? You already know the answers to these questions–you want motivated, dedicated colleagues who think, act, and feel like entrepreneurs. Developing an entrepreneurial culture seems like climbing Mount Everest, but it's actually quite simple.
Understandably, your life revolves around your company. After all, you own it. But in order to have employees who feel as connected as you do, you've got to engage them by sparking their interests in new ways. The following are things you can do from day one that will get them started on the right path.
1. Get them started on the right foot
The first day at work is about letting someone know that a great career is about to begin, not a pile of random paperwork that could have been done previously. Chances are, your employee will arrive early on their first day to make a good first impression. So why not show them the same effort? Onboard them with enthusiasm and get the paperwork done beforehand.
Reciprocity means responding in kind to what we receive, and it will increase the entrepreneurial atmosphere in your company. If someone reaches out his or her hand to you, you’ll extend your own hand to shake theirs. Business works precisely the same way. People will respond to the efforts and loyalty that you show them. When you go beyond the duties of being the boss and show your colleagues that you really think they’re valuable to your company’s success, they will respond with dedication, staying late to crank out a project without you having to ask.
3. Be authentic
Being authentic shows your colleagues that you appreciate their best efforts. People are as turned off by phoniness as they are by cheap cologne. Show your employees who you really are and that you’re committed truly to the team. (Get m0re tips on managing employees here). However you choose to do so, the entrepreneurial drive will consistently increase.
4. Appreciate their work
One time-tested method is to praise your staff and recognize what they’ve accomplished. While you’re having weekly conference calls and roundtable sessions, acknowledge an employee’s anniversary at the company. When someone comes through for the team, share it with others through a mass e-mail. People get inspired to push harder when they notice that you value the team, the individual and the work.
5. Be honest about challenges
Speak about your company in a way that people will actually care about. Being honest with staff about the history, challenges and obstacles that you overcame in order to stay competitive and meet payroll doesn’t show broken pieces. Conversely, it actually solves the puzzle. Your story is one of the things that can provide a feeling of instant ownership and connection to your company. Employees who understand the nuances of your company’s history will be driven to deliver more.
6. Prepare for brainstorms
Every business owner faces the inevitable question: You have a great team, but there’s a major project to tackle. How can you get them to deliver even more? When you hull your staff into a room, speak of urgency and leave them staring mindlessly at a whiteboard while you hope for them to come up with fresh ideas, you're not helping. In order for a brainstorming session to be effective, you have to show them your brain works too! People like to see progress, so before asking for input, show them what you’ve already planned and outlined. This way, they have something to actually connect with and contribute to.
These principles prevent NWS: Normal Workplace Syndrome. The symptoms are dull, present-but-uninspired employees who lack excitement. The cure has been outlined. Give the dosage and the result will be an increased entrepreneurial spirit within everyone!
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