What keeps your small business ticking?

Running a smaller company has its pros and cons compared to the bigger companies of the world.

On the plus side, you tend to have a better feel for your employees (assuming you are not a one-person show). Knowing those employees, you obviously want to make them as productive as possible, in turn leading your business to be more profitable. This also means your customers are more likely to benefit from the service they receive.

On the down side, smaller companies typically have less financial capital with which to work with.

That can lead to having to be tighter with a budget, along with having less staff available to meet all your customers’ needs.

Despite smaller businesses not having all of the manpower of their bigger brethren, that doesn’t mean they can’t be successful.

At the end of the day, the big focus should be on whether or not you get the most out of your employees.

Giving Workers Tools to be Successful

If you feel like you may not be getting as much out of your workers as you’d like, look at the following and then decide:

  • Positions – For starters, do you have all your employees in the right positions? This means making sure that no workers are holding down titles not truly suited for them. For smaller companies, it is not uncommon for employees to hold more than one job description. Unfortunately, some workers simply are best not suited to hold multiple roles. Do a review from time to time to make sure your efficiency levels are high, avoiding areas where work is simply not getting done because the wrong person is attempting to do it;
  • Education – When you hired different people for different roles within your company, did you project down the road that some may need additional schooling in order to best serve you and your customers? If not, now may be the time to offer such opportunities. As some smaller businesses are discovering, giving those employees interested in more education such an opportunity can provide long-term benefits for both worker and employer. Whether an employee is looking at obtaining his or her online masters in business or another such degree, the additional schooling really has no downside to it. Those employees receiving the added education can apply what they learned to your business, making for a better experience for everyone;
  • Growth – There are very few working people not interested in climbing up the corporate ladder, even if that ladder is a little smaller at a company the size of yours. Typically, added responsibilities will lead to better salaries. With that in mind, it is important that employees view your small business as one with growth potential, not essentially a dead-end job. Even though some factors are out of your control, things such as the way the overall economy will go in the coming months, you do have more control of other things than you might believe. One of those control areas is offering growth within your organization. Be sure to leave the window of opportunity open for all those employees interested in climbing through. When you do that, you generally will have more motivated workers, workers willing to go that extra mile for the customer and for you too;
  • Morale – Finally, do you think the overall morale in your workplace is good? If it isn’t, you have control of that facet too. A working environment where employees enjoy coming through the front door each and every day makes a world of difference. Do your best to show employees that they are both wanted and appreciated. Yes, they have to hold up their end of the bargain by putting in a hard day’s work regularly, but you should acknowledge that too.

Operating a small business where workers feel appreciated and know that there is always the potential for growth, those are two keys to maintaining a healthy and happy workplace.

In order to get the most out of your employees, make sure you have the right atmosphere in place from day one.

About the Author: Dave Thomas covers small business articles on the web.