“I am infuriated that he would say something so rude a customer. I have no choice but to let him go now.” These are the words one of my clients recently spoke to me in complete frustration. His face was deep red. His foot rapped against the floor in complete frustration.
As I breathed in deeply, I realized I already knew the answer to my next question. “Have you spoken with him about this?”
“Well, there just hasn’t been the right time yet. Besides, he had some issues from the beginning. I want to build a business not serve as an adult babysitter. I will simply give him fewer hours. If I’m lucky, he will find a job somewhere else.”
I have met with more small business owners with employee problems than I care to admit. It seems that most small business owners do not have the training they need to properly manage and guide their employees. Since they are also notoriously short on time, it makes sense that they have so many frustrations dealing with employees. Once we get into the issues, I often find that small business owners have not discussed their concerns with their employees before complaining to me. Once I approach the idea of coaching employees, so many business owners are confused. They think coaching is what they do when an employee needs reprimanded. They are clueless about coaching their employees so reprimands are not needed. It is not surprising that most of these small business owners have never been little league coaches, either.
The strategies coaches use to control and lead their little league athletes can be directly applied to the management and leadership of employees. Here are seven things little league coaches could teach to small business owners:
1. You must take the time to thoroughly explain each employee’s job description. You should make sure every employee knows what their role is within the company and why they are important to your company. They are an important piece to the overall puzzle, and they should know exactly what they do and why.
2. Break down the job description of every role for your employees. Explain how things work in your company. Make no assumptions about what they should understand on their own.
3. The same way you must physically demonstrate to a Little League player, you must demonstrate tasks for new employees. While doing your demonstration, point out less obvious elements of the job.
4. At this point, stand back and watch employees demonstrate what they have learned.
5. Incorrect actions should be corrected immediately and in a respectful fashion. When you see an employee make a mistake, right away repeat your demonstration of the task and tell them how they can improve their performance on the task. Your job is to respectfully coach them into doing it correctly. You must also be fast to tell employees they did a good job when you see tasks being performed correctly.
6. When an employee is struggling to master a particular task, you must be empathetic and understanding. Tell the employee that you have faith in them and know that they can succeed at their job. Even if it is difficult for you to watch the employee struggle, realize that everyone struggles to master some tasks in life.
7. Do not abandon an employee after a single coaching session. You have to be a consistent coach by following up with employees and giving them ongoing support to reach their goals. Your employees should know that they can come to you when needed, but they should also know that they are responsible for learning and reaching their goals within the company.
Coaches are observant, motivating, supportive, and patient. You must be the exact same way if you want your employees to master tasks and live up to your expectations. With proper coaching and corrective actions, it is amazing what even a problem employee can do for your business.
Find out more about Lean Frog education on at http://www.abouthcs.com/lean-frog/ and more on company publicity and Lean principles by contacting Lean Frog of Huntsville Alabama.