As an owner manager, it will undoubtedly be necessary for you to delegate work to others and to appraise their performance. How you handle such situations will have a very great bearing on how you are perceived. In addition, there is more to each process than simply to sit down and have a chat to tell someone what you think of them or what you want them to do next.
Failing to develop staff adequately is like buying an expensive car, putting it on the road, running it for 40,000 miles a year and failing to maintain it. After all, you tell yourself, you paid a lot of money for it, you pay to put petrol in it, it's supposed to keep going forever. There are lots of organisations like cars stood by the side of the road with black smoke pouring out from under the bonnet whilst the driver stands by, scratching his head, wondering what could have gone wrong and cursing the manufacturer!
At some point in your working life, it’s a fair bet that you’ll be either a member or a leader of a team. Being part of a team means not only getting things done, but also taking the opportunity for both personal development and the development of other members of the team. Teams can be an extremely effective method of getting things done but they can also fail spectacularly. It should always be remembered that there’s more to building a team than putting together a group of people and calling them one.
One of the biggest steps a business can take is recruiting its first employee. You suddenly have obligations - not least of which is ensuring your business generates sufficient income to pay the costs of that extra person. It is essential that you think carefully in advance - to ensure that you recruit someone with appropriate skills who fits well into the business and to get the best from them by providing effective training and development.
When taking on the role of a manager and/or leader it is important to take a flexible approach to the management of staff.
Andy Mead was in the UK Finals for the 1988 Shell LiveWIRE Awards with his business, The Finishing Line. Here he gives some advice on employing people as a young entrepreneur.
In 1993 Mandy Scott of AA Flags was in the Northern Region Final of the Shell LiveWIRE Awards. Here she talks about her experience of employing and managing staff as a young entrepreneur in the textile industry.
In 1999 Patricia Hay represented Gloucestershire in the regional finals of the Shell LiveWIRE Business Start Up awards with her company, First Base Employment. Here she talks to us about the complexities of employment.