1. Give some praise. Absolutely! Yes, people come to work to earn a living, but they also want recognition for what they do and to know their contribution is valued. We have a weekly internal round up at Chalk + Ward which includes “shout outs” to highlight specific individual and team contributions.
2. Remember you set the tone. I agree with this – nurturing culture comes from the top. If you want your business to have consistent behavioural values, you must set the precedent for others to understand, appreciate and follow. It’s hypocritical to pull someone up if you’re guilty of doing the same thing!
3. The buck stops with you. Yes, ultimately, it does! We hold weekly agency workload planning meetings to identify any bottlenecks and possible stressors within the team. Open dialogue and communication helps to mitigate potential errors and keeps things running smoothly.
4. Make your priorities for the next year clear and communicate them well. I agree entirely. It’s essential for a business to understand its vision and to know how they are going to achieve it. Bringing everyone along on the journey is critical to success, so outlining objectives and aims for the year is important; in doing so, the team understands what you’re trying to do, they feel part of it and they can personally connect to the vision – everyone benefits!
5. To that end, cut out the jargon. The use of pretentious phrases and complex acronyms is generally designed to obfuscate rather than elucidate. Yes, plain simple talking please! Believe me, there is a lot of jargon in the agency world and we can’t abide it. We cut out the jargon and just tell things straight.
6. Listen to your staff. Yes, always. With our commitment to Time to Change, we have an open-door policy at Chalk + Ward and we are here for our team if they ever need to chat. From a business perspective, we encourage everyone to share their ideas and views with us and each other, and we appreciate the importance in doing so.
7. Keep meetings short. Agree. We have a lot of internal meetings at Chalk + Ward, but they are needed. However, the skill is keeping them short, succinct and focused to keep people’s attention and to stop drifting off topic. Although, this is easier said than done!
8. Drop the team-building exercises. I disagree completely! For us, having a close knit, positive, supportive and collaborative team is essential to our business success and the wellbeing of our team. Personally, I believe team building needs to be encouraged not discouraged, silo working is not good!
We’d be keen to hear your views on the eight above, do you agree, disagree? Which one do you consider most important and are there any you might adopt or bring new ones in? Please share, we’re all ears!