Your employees are the foundation of your business, which is why continual mistakes, even on a small scale, need to be dealt with. One of the most important things to remember, however, is that employees are human beings. They get tired, they freeze up in stressful situations and they might have a number of other things going on in their lives which contribute to a bout of poor attention to detail at work. The key to effective management is knowing how to help employees improve the quality of their work without added to what might already be a stressful position.
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Set clear targets in small steps
There might a number of tiny areas in need of improvement, but trying to tackle them all at once will only overwhelm your employees, generate more stress for everyone and set things up to fail. Make things a lot simpler and the improvements will be easier to monitor, manage and achieve. For example, explain to your employee that he or she simply needs to read through every email before sending to check for errors or for things that he or she might have forgotten to include. Explain that you will monitor the situation for two weeks and that you won’t be able to tolerate any further errors in emails by that time. Targets are clear, the demands you are making relate to one single area and a clear time frame has been given. This kind of target setting and management style will generate a win-win situation for all involved.
Construct a series of lower management levels and distribute responsibility
Another way of dealing with small, but constant errors, is to make more people accountable for those errors. If one employee is unable to achieve the high level of attention to detail required, but the rest of the team is completely on track, why not give one member of the team an added responsibility and a bonus every month for monitoring the work of the employee who is struggling? In this way, you are rewarding someone on your team for their attention to detail and you are ensuring that any mistakes made by the employee who is struggling will be picked up and reported back to you. It’s also important to show your employees that bonuses are not only given for outstanding work, but for regular work which meets the standards expected too.
Offer incentives and reward excellence on a regular basis
Picking up on the previous idea, rewards of any nature are really important. It is far better to concentrate on rewarding those employees who work well than spend your time showing your concerns for those employees who are not working as you would like. Rewards don’t always have to be extra cash either. Work lunches covered by the company at the end of the month for all employees who have met their targets is a great way of saying thanks. An office party is another idea. Vouchers for a weekend at a spa is an excellent way to make sure your employees are getting some important relaxation time too. Relaxed employees make better, more productive employees, so invest a little in helping your employees get that necessary down-time whenever you can.
Provide regular training opportunities and show an interest in employee professional development
Sometimes, employees can begin to lose attention to detail because they’re bored. Most people want to progress, to try new things, to learn new skills and to be given other opportunities at work. Training days and opportunities to go away on conferences or seminars are perfect for employees looking for a little more stimulation from their jobs. When you invest in your employees, the natural response is for your employees to invest more in your company. When this happens, attention to detail levels increase and productivity improves.
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