Monthly Archives: July 2020

Show you value your team

3 ways to demonstrate you value your team members

Even under normal circumstances it’s important to show you value your team members; I believe we all like to be valued and our team are no exception.

But, now more so than ever, particularly if they are still on furlough.

This was one of the topics discussed on last week’s Fresh Start programme.

So here are three areas to consider to demonstrate you value your team members, whether they are still on furlough or now back at work.


One way to demonstrate you value your team is to show them respect. Whether they are back with you, or they are on furlough, but just all those little common courtesies of checking in to see how they are, saying please and thank you. To demonstrate personal integrity with them, to ask their opinion on things particularly the things that are going to be impacting them and things that where they are going to have a view.

Show that you actually care about them as individuals, so it’s not just about the business and your guests safety but also about their own safety when they get back to work.


If you want your team members to trust you, start by demonstrating your trust in them.

The easiest way for you to be able to demonstrate trust is giving them things that you know that they’re going to do a good job with. So, play to people’s strengths give them things where they can demonstrate their strengths and you’re going to be confident that they’ll do well.

Empower your team to make decisions on things which come under their responsibility; you can’t give someone responsibility but then not empower them to make those decisions. A classic situation is dealing with a customer complaint.

Give people the flexibility to do things in the way that feels most comfortable to them providing of course it’s safe. Very often the way which people work – it’s the end result that’s important not how they actually arrived at that end result.

When giving them responsibility – coming back to those things where they have strengths – if you give people flexibility and ownership then inevitably they’re going to do a better job because they know that the result’s down to them.


The third way to demonstrate you value your team members is acknowledging their contribution.

For example putting people forward for awards; it’s amazing what impact that can have. It’s being nominated which is the important factor, not the winning… although the winning of course is really nice if it happens.

Thinking about how you celebrate success. Not necessarily just things at work, but also things which are happening outside of work; personal achievements to them as well. Many people of course while they have been investing in their personal development or maybe taking on new hobbies and interest whilst they’ve been on furlough. So it’s good to be recognising some of those things too.

One final thing I think with all of this which goes throughout the whole of the theme in terms of showing people that they are valued is to say a very sincere thank you. Not a vague and generic thank you, but actually thanking them for some specific contributions, so that they know that we actually do mean it.

So, those are three ways to demonstrate that you value your team members: Respect, Trust and Recognition

demonstrate you value your team

Demonstrate you value your team by Entering Awards

Video: Giving employees recognition

Spotting problems

spotting problems

Drip, drip, drip

Have you been spotting problems?

During the lockdown you’ve no doubt had to carry out some tasks you’d normally have delegated to others in your team.

I know I have.

And it’s only when you perform those tasks yourself you realise that they’re not as straight forward as you thought…

Maybe the system is cumbersome, the equipment used doesn’t function as well as it should, or the process simply doesn’t deliver the result you want.

Has this happened to you?

If it has, I bet you’re left wondering “Why didn’t they say anything?

When you perform a task every day or every week you probably don’t notice when it takes longer than it should, or doesn’t work as smoothly as it used to. It’s a gradual change so you simply fail to spot it.

So bit by bit it gets worse and worse and we’re blissfully unaware.

It’s only when we stand back and reassess that we notice.

This gradual decline can happen in all sorts of situations:

  • the fabric of your building
  • the effectiveness of your equipment
  • the quality of raw materials
  • a system that’s out of date
  • short cuts or cutting corners on processes which have become the norm
  • IT infrastructure overload, meaning slower and slower response times
  • the morale of your team

Any of these can impact your team’s effectiveness, their well-being and most likely your customers’ experience too.

As we get back to business, as new procedures are put in place and people take on different tasks, now is a good time to review and amend.

Where you’re performing tasks normally covered by others:

  • What works OK but could be improved
  • What is simply no longer fit for purpose
  • Where has the system become cumbersome
  • Where have corners been cut by others
  • What’s missing
  • What’s no longer relevant
  • How can we improve this

Where team members are returning to existing tasks:

Once it’s been a certain way for any length of time unless it causes us a major inconvenience we simply get used to things that way.

Flush out anything that’s standing in the way of them doing a brilliant job or impacts the customer in some way.

This often highlights frustrations they have in the system or with current resources, levels of authority, existing skills or conflicting priorities.

So, ask:

What would they improve if they could? To help people feel comfortable to make suggestions ask questions that allow them to take off the blinkers.

Such as:

  • What would you do if it was your business?
  • What would you do if we had an endless supply of cash?
  • What would you do if you had a magic wand?

Although all these question might result in ‘pie in the sky’ ideas nine times out of 10 you’ll end up with some ideas you can use in some way, and because they’ve suggested them you’ll get far more buy-in to implement them.

Where team members are taking on new tasks:

You have a fresh pair of eyes on the task so make the most if this.

What questions do they have on why they are doing the task or why is it done this way (often it’s simply because you’ve always done tings this way – which isn’t a valid reason!)

Ask them to suggest how they could approach it.

Can they suggest better ways of doing things?

When it’s your own department it’s easy to become protective, oblivious to some of the challenges or frustrations others may encounter. So it’s really important that team members don’t feel intimidated if they suggest improvements.

Prevention is better than cure

Failure to report and deal with problems promptly not only leads to frustrations, and later accusations of whose fault it is, but could cost you dearly in the long run if it causes long-term damage.

Have a system in place for spotting problems and for regular maintenance, whether this is done in house or with a contractor. Encourage team members to report problems promptly when the equipment isn’t performing on all four cylinders, or gets damaged, rather than apportioning blame on them for causing the problem.

Have a process which makes this quick and easy.

Listen to what they have to say

Unless followed though promptly they won’t bother telling you next time.

The longer problems are left unresolved, the less emphasis it places on the importance of their welfare or the customer experience in their eyes and the less importance they will place on their contribution to your business.

Old habits die hard

The longer you live with something the more you become accustomed to it being that way, and the longer it will take for people to adjust to the new way.

Make allowance for this, and test and measure to check the ‘new’ way is working.

Culture for continuous improvement

Keeping on top of these issues is as much down to your culture as it is about the systems.

A culture where it’s OK to speak up if you think something isn’t up to standard.

Where people won’t take offence if someone suggests a better way of doing something.

Where it’s accepted that mistakes happen, the important thing is to learn from it and prevent it happening again.

Take action

If you only do one thing

Spotting problems and making continuous improvement comes from incremental changes. Identify one small change you could make today that will save time, help a customer or reduce effort in the long run.

Related articles: When you stop noticing the cracks 

LinkedIn article: Making continuous improvements