Entrepreneurs and business leaders want to build seamless working relationships with their team members, no matter how those individuals join the team.
In this article, we share wisdom that Farm to Fit Co-CEO Dre Slaman provided during a recent interview with Business Success Consulting Group CEO Adi Klevit. Dre and her husband run a family business, and the working relationships between the co-founders and CEOs, along with their valued employees, have been vital to their business success.
Whether you are running a family business or are only employing professionals found through recruitment efforts, this article will provide vital information you need to build seamless working relationships with those around you.
Follow These Strategies to Build a Seamless Working Relationship
Build a supportive team as an entrepreneur
Many entrepreneurs focus on working better and harder as individual contributors rather than taking a step back to explore their leadership roles. This can lead to burnout and reduces the potential to scale the business. If everything is on one person’s shoulders, they cannot grow the company past their individual working capacity.
With this in mind, here are several strategies you can use to build a supportive team and seamless working relationships within that team:
Find people with whom you can be vulnerable.
Entrepreneurs often start out feeling they must be the ones with all the answers. Saying “I don’t know” can be hard, but it’s also vital if you genuinely don’t know the answer to a question or can’t discern a solution. Find the people you trust to help when you say, “I don’t know” or “I need help.” Those are the team members upon whom you can rely.
Work with experts whose advice you trust.
No entrepreneur is an expert in every area. Tapping into expertise by hiring outside help, full-time employees, or through consultation can help you grow your business quickly and reliably.
Collaborate to discover solutions.
You hired a team to help you build your business. Don’t take everything on your shoulders, and try to devise the solution to problems on your own. Talk with your team. Collaborate. Tap into their unique expertise. They might come up with better solutions than you could have on your own.
Hire based on shared values.
When hiring, make sure your candidates have shared values and ideals. This is vital both to company culture and to building a collaborative network. Your team should be excited about your business and eager to help it grow.
If you can’t afford a full-time employee, don’t hire one
Instead, hire seasonal or part-time employees. You can also employ expert contractors or consultants to help you grow your business to the point where you can employ someone to do the work full-time.
Create hiring systems
Often, an entrepreneur will begin to hire specific employees because they’ve been told it’s the next thing to do. Take a step back from what you’ve been told and instead create a system that activates when an area is about to be understaffed.
This system might look different depending on the business type. For example, a Christmas tree farm might activate its hiring system for temporary workers right before harvest. But a hair salon could activate the hiring system when each hair stylist only has one slot a week available for walk-ins. These systems look different, but each supports a seamless team that works together to build a better business.
Working with family
Farm to Fit Co-CEO, Dre Slaman. Dre and her husband, G., built their business together. In her recent interview, Dre shared the strategies she and her husband have used to create a successful business and maintain a loving relationship over the years. Here is her advice:
1. Assign roles and stick to them
When families work together, they already have a firm foundation of trust. This can be amazing, but it can also lead to business owners stepping on one another’s toes. Instead of causing friction in your working relationship, name your roles and stick to the jobs in your purview.
2. Help only when needed
Another aspect of not stepping on one another’s toes is to help the other person only when they need it. If they are doing just fine, don’t step in and try to complete a task for them. Just as is the case with any team member, doing work for the other person will lead to confusion.
3. Establish working hours
As is the case with any new business, owners can end up working all of the time. Build in working hours early, and try to discuss work only within those hours.
4. Build scripts for when someone wants to discuss work outside of working hours
Couples naturally discuss work when they get home. It’s a regular topic of conversation. Dre and G. try not to discuss work outside of their everyday. However, if it comes up, they are likely to tell one another, “let’s talk it through tomorrow morning.”
At the end of the day, both partners are likely tired and not in the right frame of mind to problem solve, so while one person may be welcome to mention an anecdote, Dre and G. try to keep any business meetings in the workplace and out of the home.
5. Establish your own ground rules
One couple’s rules may not work for another couple or family team. Establish your own ground rules that feel best for you and your family.
6. Treat one another with respect
Just as you would with a non-family team member, it’s vital that you treat your family member(s) with respect. They have their established role, and if you need to bring up a point, do it respectfully and behind closed office doors – not in front of a customer or other team member.
Following the golden rule, “Treat others as you would like to be treated” will always go far whether your coworkers are family or regular employees.
Are you ready to create systems to help build your team while supporting healthy working relationships? Get in touch with Business Success Consulting Group today.