Google was named the World’s Most Attractive Employer in 2015, and it’s not difficult to see why. The company offers its employees free Wi-Fi enabled shuttles to and from work, free healthy meals, laundry and fitness facilities, 18 weeks of fully paid maternity leave and on-site childcare.
How can small businesses compete with perks like that? Luckily, Google is just one business among many and there are very few other businesses who can offer similar benefits like this global internet giant.
Small business have one vital hold over potential employees that the big businesses can’t offer: the family feel. The latest Employee Outlook Survey reported that 55 percent of employees would prefer to work for businesses with a ‘family feel’ over larger companies.
Keep It Small
In light of this, don’t focus all your energies on expanding. If employees prefer the cosier company then be exactly that! While you shouldn’t compromise your business mission, there’s nothing wrong with slowing things down in order to attract prospective employees.
One of the draws of family businesses for employees is that stability and open communication lines. Talk to your employees and make sure they feel as though they can speak to you about any aspect of the business – even if they aren’t directly involved in it.
Good Working Practices
Get potential employees interested by stressing the importance of good working practices in your business. There’s a variety of practices that you can exercise that will attract both employees and customers and will genuinely make your business a more productive place.
Effective management is one of the strengths of a good company and without it there’s no chance of running a successful business. Follow a structure where everyone is easily able to expand on ideas.
Why Over What
Employees (and customers) lean towards businesses that explain why they do what they do, rather than just explaining what they do. People are focused on the origins of a company – which as a small business you can emphasize.
Rather than explaining what you do, explain why you do it. The mission statement of your business should be at the forefront of the marketing campaign – and highlighting the ethics of your company should also be high on your priority list.
Choose Your Workspace Wisely
Create a positive environment for your employees. People will spend a significant portion of their time there, and while you may not be able to offer the same gym and dog walking facilities that Google can, you can still create a healthy environment to work in.
Open spaces and light encourage workers to be at their most productive, and separate spaces for breaks and work are advantageous for breaking up the day and separating work and break.
Put People First
No one wants to work for a business where they have no say about anything other than what to have for lunch. Put your employees first when making big decisions, rather than telling them after you’ve decided.
Use an internal structure where people make the decisions, rather than the management. This will allow a stronger bond between employees and a feeling of unity. You should also treat customers as you would treat yourself to help your business keep a family feel as you grow.
Think Beyond Salary and Benefits
Talented employees aren’t going to stay in a position that doesn’t challenge them and keep them on their toes. Keep employees engaged in other ways so they get the most from their job role and you get the most productivity from them as possible.
You can encourage employees to perform at their best by creating development plans with clear job descriptions and goals. Be open to the idea of a flexible working policy will also keep employees interested in the position.
Play Your Strengths
What can small business offer employees that other companies can’t? It might seem like not having the money means you simply can’t offer the same opportunities, when actually you can in fact offer better ones.
Small businesses give staff the opportunity to have a stronger voice and role in the company, the chance to develop at a faster rate than they would in a larger company and key role in driving the business forward. We’d say that isn’t something to be sniffed at!
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