Good Employees Start with Good Managers
If you have at least one employee, chances are you hired them. Their training was basically you showing them how you wanted the job done. You give them encouragement when they do a good job, but mainly you leave them alone and let them do their work.
Then after a few months, you find yourself biting your tongue when they do something wrong. You tell yourself, “they aren’t perfect, but replacing them would be hard. Besides, it would be tough to find someone else that knows my business and is willing to work for what I can afford to pay.”
Then once a year, you remember something you read about employee reviews in an article about management. To you, “employee review” is code for “pay raise” which you can’t afford. To an employee, a review sounds like the boss telling them what they’ve been doing wrong. Neither of you want to do it, but you offer them a few dollars a week raise anyway, and assume you’re good for another year.
Then one day they quit. If you have a great relationship with your employee, they may offer to stay on an extra 2 weeks to train their replacement (which you can never find in 2 weeks). Sometimes they tell you they are leaving as you hand them their paycheck on Friday. But sometimes they just quit showing up. You assume they left for more pay, and that you would have given them the same $1 an hour raise they got at their new job if they would have stayed.
Eventually you replace the employee, and the cycle starts all over again.
If any of this sounds familiar, you’re not alone. Most small businesses with employees are managed this way. The problem is that learning to be a good photographer doesn’t train you to become a good manager.
Fortunately, there is hope. Studies show that increasing your management skills by even a small amount can have a huge impact on the productivity of your employees. Next week I’ll give you a step-by-step plan you can use to make that happen.
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