Being a young manager, it is especially important to be able to motivate and monitor your employee’s performance. Naturally associates are skeptical about being told what to do by either someone their own age or someone younger. In retail environments productivity of employees can fluctuate easily depending on the store’s circumstance i.e. off ad-cycle, time of year, times of high unemployment, weather conditions, etc. These 4 steps can help managers remember it doesn’t take much to increase your employee’s productivity as long as you’re consistent.
1. Delegate Efficiently – When delegating it is important to know who your A players are and who your C players are. Managers time and time again waste valuable time explaining or shadowing an associate that they are not confident in or having to go behind and change/fix what they did. Know the employees capabilities so you don’t run into problems after the initial task is assigned. Remember that the tasks that you delegate are the tasks your performance is being rated by and more importantly they can affect metrics that you bonus off of.
2. Follow Up – NEVER leave an employee hanging. Remember we are all human and enjoy some kind of communication after being given a task. Feedback is essential in building a relationship with your employees so you can start building a mental database of reliable associates. Following up is necessary in order to provide adequate training and development to employees.
3. Kick in the Butt – Negative criticism is helpful and completely necessary when applicable. Even your best associates will make mistakes, so it is crucial to coach them so mistakes quit happening. Some managers feel uncomfortable when giving negative criticism, but realize making it constructive will allow them to learn from their mistakes. If the problem is a bigger concern, it is important to take formal action that includes written documentation. A manager needs to communicate to the employee whether the conversation is uncomfortable or not.
4. Tap on the Back – Everyone likes to be told that they are doing a good job, including your employees. One thing I constantly do is thank my employees for their hard work and efforts. It doesn’t have to be an elaborate conversation about how they are the best in the world, but definitely give them some kind of signal at the minimum that they are doing good work and you are satisfied with it. Managers fall prey to leaving reliable associates on islands without recognizing what they are accomplishing for you or the company and it can be detrimental. Managers don’t want to create a disgruntled employee because we all know the repercussions of that.