As I write this, I am supporting a team of business leaders to create personal development plans for the next 3 months. It’s a crucial time for the business as they set their strategic plan for the coming year. They have ambitious plans (..and don’t we all?!), however, I ask them a very simple and obvious question “are your people ready for this growth?”
It will be no surprise to you that this led to an immediate conversation around ‘how can we upskill our small team of people to deliver our plan?’ This conversation is one of many we are having at this crucial time of year, and getting ready for what may be another challenging year in the world of hospitality.
The following questions followed on….
- Where do we start?
- How much will it cost?
- How can we cater for our small team?
- How can I make sure each person receives their development?
At this point, we identified the possibilities and potential of the team and began to build a picture through ‘job chats’ with each member of the team. These were informal chats with purpose, which allowed us to identify where our key focuses belong. With this being a smaller business with dynamic growth ahead, the team are on the smaller side at this point. There were a number of needs identified…. Some needed coaching skills, some needed to brush up their leadership approach and others required a refresh on employee legislation. At this point, we had a clear plan of what we wanted to do, but could it be done?
The answer was, simply yes! Initially, we focused on our leadership approach. Here is how we tackled it…..
We swiftly recognised that, the world of hospitality has become diverse in many ways and the people within desire to be more entrepreneurial and feel part of the business they are running every day. With that, we noticed that not one of the managers was the same, however, they all had the similar passion and drive to deliver outstanding customer experiences. This is where we introduced personal leadership. Personal leadership is about being aware of others, what motivates them and building them up to have the confidence to grow and reach their full potential. Simply by making sure we had a different approach for each of our managers will ensure we are delivering personal leadership. It’s all about matching the needs of the people within the business and getting the best out of them. Of course, we recognised that we had a journey to go on and those that have a traditional leadership approach may have some challenges ahead.
We needed a starting point as this is where we began….. ‘why do we need to be more personal in our approach?’
The answer was clear… to maintain our place within a competitive high street – businesses don’t become the best without the best people. By trusting our managers and involving them in decisions will help them to feel empowered. And not to forget, our customers – ensuring our managers take personal responsibility for living the brand and delivering exceptional customer experiences.
So, how can business leaders help their managers?
By introducing the above as part of the way we do things, and our personal leadership approach, we will create that infectious culture that provides a strong sense of engagement with each of the team. The knock-on effect - our customers will love us too!
If you’re looking at ways to get the most out of your teams this new Financial Year, get in touch with The People Factor to discuss a bespoke learning solution for your business – we’re a friendly bunch and know our stuff.