I remember hearing a story about what it was like to work for Google.
I don’t know how much of it was true, but apparently they make it so attractive to work there, that most of the employees don’t want to go home.
Free gourmet food in the cafeteria, 24 hours per day
Free vending machines for all things technical
Showering and changing facilities
A gym to work out in
I also remember seeing an interview with someone who worked there. He claimed that the best thing about working for Google was the free rein you were given for creativity. Nobody was watching over your shoulder, making sure you were clocking in your hours. No one was telling you what to do every five minutes, and there was a very flat hierarchy. The result? A feeling of freedom, creativity and of comradeship.
Although my company is nowhere near the size of Google, I try to create a similar work atmosphere.
The employees are provided good coffee, good food and a relaxed working environment.
I respect their opinions, lead my example and never ever try to make them feel bad if they make a mistake.
If they need time off, I will bend over backwards to give it to them.
If they are ill, they are told to rest.
If they are struggling with a personal issue, they are given sympathy and respect.
I treat them like the valuable members of my team that I consider them to be.
The result? An amazing work atmosphere and a dedicated and loyal staff.
Leadership is about doing unto others as you would have them do unto you. It is about recognising that your workforce will subconsciously copy your behaviour, and look to you for examples of how to react, to certain situations. If you always remain calm and positive, they will learn to trust in you. They will look to you for guidance, but feel free to make their own decisions. They will act without fear. Your customers will sense their good spirits and feel drawn to your company.
Leadership comes from the top down.
A happy workforce makes a profitable business so aim to get your people on your side.