Do you feel like a ‘reluctant leader’? This is how many entrepreneurs and small business owners, if they’re being completely honest, might feel about themselves.
When you started your company you believed that your product or service would have an impact on the world. However, as your company grows, you find that there are a lot of extra responsibilities to take care of.
One of these is to build and manage a team of productive and motivated individuals who can help you to reach those big goals. And it’s a whole lot easier said than done!
There are some very basic slip-ups that lots of entrepreneurs and small business owners are making, and they often don’t even notice. Here we investigate some of them, and what you can do about them…
Acting with the best intentions, but without understanding the law
You value your staff. You want to do what’s best for them, and you have no intention of doing anything that could potentially harm your business or bring it into disrepute. However, the reality is that simply trying to do what you think is right and fair might not mean that it’s the best course.
Employment law can be complex and difficult to wrap your head around, yet it’s still your responsibility to make sure that you’re compliant. Are you aware, for example, of the legislation around acceptable working hours? Or how you should support disabled members of staff? Or what to do if a member of the staff is expecting a baby? If not, then it’s a good idea either to improve your knowledge, or seek some expert advice.
Developing and putting in place the right policies and procedures
Have you ever considered how you would handle the situation if a member of staff started to underperform, or if their behaviour became unacceptable? Believing you can simply address these issues when and if they arise means you are less likely to prepare the way with adequate job descriptions, targets and expectations, policies or guidelines. Not preparing certainly isn’t an ideal strategy. Waiting until an issue has occurred can result in all kinds of problems and misunderstandings, and you are more likely to react in a knee-jerk fashion.
You need to have the right policies and procedures in place, so perhaps consider this article your gentle wake-up call. Not only will making changes reduce your risk of running into difficulties when problems arise, but it can also help you to drive your business forward and lend you some confidence that you truly are prepared for what the future may bring.
Investing in expert HR advice is not just for the big fish
Don’t just think that working with an HR consultant will be something that you will need to do years in the future, once you’ve built a huge team. In actual fact, we have provided affordable solutions to small businesses with just a few employees, and really helped them to identify and create a clear growth plan for the future. Your people are invariably key to your growth strategy, so it pays to link the two considerations together.
Seeking out help earlier can ensure that any small problems don’t become deeply fixed in your workplace culture, and can give you a huge amount of peace of mind in your role as an employer.
If you’re reading this guide and you know that you’re perhaps making some of these mistakes, then get in touch. We can arrange to have a no-obligation consultation, and make a plan for getting you firmly on the right track!