How to Build Trust and Transparency in Business

 How-to-Build-Trust-and-Transparency-in-BusinessIf you have your very own small, family business, you might think that honesty goes without saying. You work with a small group of trusted people, you already know each other’s strengths and shortcomings, so you naturally assume that you’re on the same page. Soon enough, every small business owner learns that even small, family businesses can suffer from a lack of transparency in their ranks.

This is when those unpleasant misunderstandings occur, when people don’t feel accountable for their portion of the work, or they fail to share how they really feel about a certain process. To build trust and transparency in your own business, you need to start with setting up the right communication procedures as well as tools.

Here’s how you can take care of your company and build more trust with everyone working along your side!

Meetings with a purpose Meetings-with-a-purpose-plan-out-topics-of-meeting

Too many smaller businesses waste hours of their precious time on meetings that don’t have a designated agenda. To make the most of that time you spend in your meetings, make sure that you, first of all, help people prepare for the meeting by letting them know what they will be expected to talk about – if they should provide a financial report, suggest ideas, summarize their daily work, etc.

Share the agenda beforehand so that everyone can prepare, and take your efforts a step further: make sure that you set a time frame for each subject you want to cover. That way, you won’t spend two hours in a call that should have, realistically, lasted no more than 45 minutes.

Communication and scheduling tools  Weave-feedback-into-your-regular-communication.

Time management is vital for setting company standards, but it’s also a crucial component for helping employees build healthy, transparent communication on a daily basis. Every business, no matter how big or small, needs to use effective scheduling software that helps you set up your daily routine and ensure fair workload allocation.

Everyone should have access to your software, so that they know when they can reach out to other team members, text them, and set up automatic notifications that will help everyone stay on track with all the meetings and tasks. When you simplify scheduling and rostering, your employees will have an easier time asking for help if they have too much on their plate, or they can step in and help a coworker when they have a little bit of extra time.

Feedback is a must Weave-feedback-into-your-regular-communication.

There is no way to improve your business or your output if you don’t know what troubles your employees. Then again, you cannot expect them to share any of their worries or issues if the atmosphere in your company doesn’t allow for such interactions.

Make sure to weave feedback into your regular communication, be it via email, polls and surveys, or if you want to set up one-on-one chats with your team. Asking for constructive feedback and acting upon it means that they will feel more comfortable sharing their ideas in the future – and that inevitably leads to growth and prosperity!

Master the art of goal-setting Master-of-Goal-Setting-and-Transparency-starts-with-setting-the-right-kinds-of-goals

Do your employees know what it takes to finish their tasks? What about the purpose of those tasks as they relate to your grander goals as a company? Transparency starts with setting the right kinds of goals, both for individual employees and for your entire company.

From time to time, even if it’s every quarter, you can organize team meetings to talk about goals and help everyone set their goals as well as weekly and monthly milestones. That will set the right expectations and standards for every employee, and allow you to tailor-make your business plans based on what your employees can deliver.

Keep everyone in the loop

Even smaller companies have different sectors and departments, taking care of different, seemingly unconnected tasks. Your marketing specialist might be tackling the newsletter, ads, and social media, while your sales guru could be processing customers while you’re coming up with more ways to offer original, authentic products or services.

Whether you’re running a local salon business, or you have a digital learning platform to offer classes, you should make sure that every employee knows your business inside out. Keeping people in the loop, sharing your ups and downs, letting them know when changes are coming up before they do, and the like will help sustain the morale in your company and boost trust.

As wonderful as it may be to have a family-owned company or to run a small business with a handful of people sharing the workload with you – trust is always essential. Building trust and loyalty starts with how you organize and manage your business.

Make sure to leverage the listed ideas and help your business thrive, so that everyone working with you will feel valued, happy, engaged, and above all, productive!

Starting Strong – 5 Indispensable Tips for a Successful Startup Business

Starting-Strong-5-Indispensable-Tips-for-a-Successful-Startup-Business
Source: RawPixel / Pixabay

If you’ve decided to venture out on your own, then congratulations. You’ve now taken the first step to become a successful business owner. However, starting a business doesn’t mean you triumph right away. It takes hard work, dedication, and a whole lot of decision-making. Even then, it doesn’t always work in your favor.

If you want the best chance of success, then you need helpful information at your fingertips. Here’s a list of tips to follow when starting your own business:

Be FrugalVirtual-office

During your first few years of business, or even longer, you probably won’t have endless amounts of money. Therefore, you can’t act as if you do. If you want your venture to be a success, you have to spend your money wisely.

One way to do that is with a virtual office. While you can work from the comfort of your home and save a fortune in office lease agreements, your customers don’t have to know that.

You can have an official business address, mail forwarding service, and even a receptionist. A virtual office offers the perception of a successful business which can sometimes be all you need to get them through the door and make that the reality.

Form RelationshipsWorking-together-for-success.

Word of mouth is going to be one of your most significant advertising avenues. However, the only way to make it work for you is by making sure people know who you are and are likely to say the right things. Attend business functions, make yourself known in the community, and rub shoulders with the rich and famous.

Before long, your name will be on the lips of those who require your services. Once you get a few people through your doors and make the right impression, word-of-mouth advertising will be ready to do its thing.

Do Your Research Do-research-visit-a-library

A common mistake that people make is getting so caught up in their passion that they forget to find out if anyone else shares it. Before you get too invested in your business idea, do the groundwork. Use research companies to conduct market research and get to know your audience.

It also helps if you know who else already offers the products and services you are thinking of offering. It’s better to find out if your business idea is a flop before it gets off the ground than to find out once you’ve already sunk a fortune into making it work.

Look After YouBalance-between-optimal-health-and-business-growth.

Many successful entrepreneurs have seen the value in working long hours to achieve their goals, but such dedication can take its toll. Stress and sleeplessness can have an adverse effect on your health and can also end up impacting your business. Make sure you strike a rewarding balance between optimal health and business growth. There is room for both in your life.

Don’t Undercharge

When you’re the new kid on the business block, it can be tempting to undercut your competitors to get customers through the door. When you do this, you’re both annoying company owners you may need to form beneficial relationships with, and causing your business a world of hurt. If you charge too little, you’ll overwork yourself and potentially deliver poor results. You’ll then get a reputation as not an affordable business, but one that provides sub-par results.

As a new business owner, you’re probably going to make many mistakes. No one is an expert on their first day. However, these tips above may help you to make fewer of them. Be frugal, research thoroughly, know your worth, and form relationships. You can be a successful business owner in no time.

5 Tips To Help You Stand Out At A Virtual Networking Event

How-to-stand-out-at-virtual-networking-events.                       Picture: Geralt/Pixabay

In this new COVID-19 world, we’re learning how to go about our daily lives in a new way. Rather than attending events in person, we’re attending them in a virtual format. Networking events are no different. 

We’re still able to meet new people, but only through our cameras and microphones. With this barrier, how are you supposed to stand out? The following tips should help. 

Follow Up

Even if you click with a few people during your virtual networking event, it can be challenging to know what to do with those relationships next. Do you send them an email? Do you give them a call? Is it appropriate to add them on social media? 

If you’re not quite sure where this newfound relationship could lead, consider corporate gifts and promotional products. By sending products to as many people as possible in your virtual networking event, you put yourself in a desirable position to be remembered. 

They’ll have a branded product from your business to remember you at the right time, and you may just be able to strike up a conversation if they contact you to thank you for the nice surprise. 

Go on Camera  

There are many benefits associated with networking, but how you attend networking events will determine which benefits you’re likely to experience for yourself. If you’re an anonymous addition to the virtual event, with no webcam, you’re unlikely to be remembered. 

Even if you express, at great length, your business offerings and reach, people still need to put a face to the name. Turn your webcam on, and make sure it faces you so that you’re looking directly at the lens. 

Dress in professional business attire, and ensure the lighting is just right. If you can, avoid sitting in front of a window as it can negatively impact your picture quality. It’s also important to check that you’ve got a clear background behind you. 

Have a Goal in Mind

Attending a virtual networking event without a goal can be a pointless exercise. Therefore, before you log onto that Zoom call, think about what you hope to achieve. You might be looking for some tips on a subject that’s been troubling you or to exchange ideas about something in particular. Many people also attend networking events, both virtual and in-person, to learn more about specific fields or make new connections in those fields. 

Ask Questions

There are few things as awkward in an online networking event as silence. The conversation has stopped flowing, and no one knows what to say next. Avoid this scenario by having a list of thought-provoking questions you can slip into any awkward silences.

After doing this enough times, you can confidently leave conference calls knowing that you stood out as a leader

If you’re not sure what kind of questions to ask, do your homework before the event begins. Find out the career paths of some of the participants. You can then ask questions about people’s latest projects and triumphs. 

Show Gratitude  

At the end of the event, as everyone is signing off, thank the host for organizing it. If the host isn’t present, contact them afterward to express your gratitude. This gesture of appreciation is bound to be welcomed and may just secure your invite to the next meet-up.   

Virtual events can be a lot to wrap your head around. They’re new and dramatically different from in-person gatherings. However, the same principles apply. By setting goals, being assertive on camera, and remembering to follow up, there’s certainly a chance that you can stand out for all the right reasons. 

Help People Live a Healthier Lifestyle with Your Restaurant Business

Help-People-Live-a-Healthier-Lifestyle-with-Your-Restaurant-BusinessIt’s a false notion to say that living a healthy lifestyle is expensive. Even without spending a lot of money, you can stay healthy. The reason why some people say that it’s costly to live healthily is that they want an excuse for doing the same thing all the time.

If you run a restaurant business, you can also make it more affordable. You can help promote healthy living by giving people a reason not to worry about the expense. It could be challenging given the expenses in your business, but you can do it.

Look for the right suppliers

When you rely on local stores, you might have a hard time finding healthy and affordable ingredients. You don’t need to limit your options if you can look for online suppliers. You can also request the delivery of the supplies straight to your place. For instance, if you want to add tuna to the dishes to sell in the restaurant, you can find tuna suppliers online. Given the health benefits of tuna, your customers will probably order these dishes.

As long as you can count on the store to give you what you need, it’s okay to order online. When you find a quality supplier that you can have a regular partnership with, you might even get a discount. You can also sell these products to other people you know who also wish to start living healthily.

Highlight the healthy options on the menu

Another thing you can do is to highlight the healthy options on the menu. When your customers want to eat something healthy, they have a variety of choices. Make sure these options are just as flavourful as the not-so-healthy dishes. You should also check the price. Don’t let people believe that eating healthy dishes will cost them a lot. Instruct your waiters to recommend the dishes containing healthy ingredients and commend customers who try their best to live healthily.

Allow customers to customise their dishes

You might have a standard recipe when cooking the orders in the restaurant. However, you can try to be more flexible to cater to the needs of your customers. If they want to exclude certain ingredients due to the negative health effects, you should allow them to do so. You can even recommend the necessary modifications to the dish to make them healthier. Servings should be available in different sizes so that your customers won’t force themselves to eat a lot.

Make it your brand

Every restaurant business has a brand. Some people highlight certain dishes that best reflect their brand. You can choose healthy dishes as your signature. When advertising your restaurant, people need to know what you offer, and why it’s good for them. Given the number of health-conscious people, you’ll be taking the right step. You will benefit from these changes, and even help everyone live a healthier lifestyle. Hopefully, you’ll see an increase in the number of customers patronising your restaurant soon.

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