Monthly Archives: March 2021

What’s going on?

team briefings

Team briefings. Your chance to keep your team in the loop.

Things change daily in your business and no one in your team wants to look unprepared or be caught unawares.

This might be something as simple as a product or service which isn’t available, so customers end up being disappointed. Perhaps it’s a particular customer who has special requirements, who might need some specialist treatment or VIP attention. Or it could be something completely out of your team’s control, such as roadworks or severe weather, but that impacts customers.

Whatever the reason, your team need to be in the know. What’s happening and what you’re doing to add value for customers, or offering to minimise any negative impact.

So just how do your team members get kept abreast of what’s happening day to day in your business which can have an impact on them and your customers?

In our haste to get on with the day ahead it’s tempting to rely on notice boards or email. But there’s a problem with this… they are limited to one way, and no opportunity to question or clarify. You lose the ability to judge people’s reactions, or even know for sure it has been read.

A simple 10 minute “Buzz Briefing” at the start of each day or shift plugs this gap.

As the name suggests it’s your opportunity to create a buzz for the shift or day ahead.

It’s your chance to update everyone on anything that affects that day’s operation. Plus, it’s your opportunity to get feedback from your team on things that need attention, to answer their questions, or listen to their ideas.

So, even on your busiest mornings make sure these briefings still happen – it’s generally on the days that are your busiest that things go wrong, and in many businesses it’s on your busiest days when you have the best opportunities for increasing sales.

Take action

If you only do one thing. Next time you have an important message to share with the team gather everyone round and deliver the message in person rather than sending a blanket email. Notice what happens when you deliver the message in person and encourage a two way dialogue.

Related posts: Someone could have told us

Someone could have told us




Redefining your purpose

defining your purpose

Redefining your purpose so everyone is aligned

As you prepare for team members to return to work, remind people of your purpose.

Bear in mind, some of them may not have seen one another for the whole of the lockdown. You may even have new people in your team who haven’t met anyone yet.

So it will important for you to take steps now to bring the team together, and ensure when they return that everyone is aligned.

One area to start is by reminding people of your purpose, and theirs.

People perform better when they feel a sense of belonging, and one of the easiest ways to do this is to have a shared purpose. As a lot’s changed in the last 12 months, so it’s possible your vision, mission, or values have shifted.

Even if this isn’t the case, remind your team of your purpose, and by doing this collectively you know that everybody has had the same message.

In the lead up to opening, you’ll also have some immediate goals and priorities. If you let everyone know now what these are, and how they contribute to them, it means they can be more prepared for them as and when they return. This enables everybody to be working towards the same goals and targets from the outset.

When we think of purpose we might only think about the impact on the world. But Daniel Pink talks about two types of purpose. Purpose with a small p is making a contribution in the job. When people understand their own purpose or the part they play in your business as a whole, they are more likely to come forward with ideas and input. Your team will often have a different perspective, so give them a voice, which in turn gains buy in and helps them feel valued.

Take action

If you only do one thing: Prior to people returning from furlough or working from home, share your key priorities and focus for the next few weeks so everyone in your team is aligned.

Today’s top tip

Always welcome your team’s ideas, thoughts and suggestions for anything that might save time, improve your customers’ experience, or make their lives easier, however minor.

One percent improvement in 1,000 things is better than 1,000% improvement in one thing. Tom Peters

Getting buy-in blog

Giving your team a sense of purpose video

Maintain a team spirit and have some fun as a team

Maintain a team spirit

If your team are on furlough or working from home it’s still important to maintain a team spirit. One of the things we discussed on my webinar last week was the importance of still doing things together as a team to keep the team spirit alive, and make it easier once everyone is back together in the same space to work as a team.

In the same way that you might under normal circumstances, don’t let the lockdown prevent you from doing things together as a team.

There are plenty of activities you can do online, where people can work as a team. Anything from quiz nights to virtual escape rooms, horseracing, cocktail masterclasses, wine tastings, etc.

Whatever you do, the focus should be on having some fun with colleagues. If there’s some relevant learning to be had as a result (such as wine tasting), so much the better, but that shouldn’t be a prerequisite.

If you have the outdoor space to allow it (and a good weather forecast!), is there an opportunity to get your team together in person? Of course, still maintaining social distancing and any other government guidelines.

Taking part in a charitable event – be that fundraising, volunteering, or simply raising awareness – can be a rewarding way of bringing people together and maintain a team spirit, even if virtually. It’s Red Nose Day this Friday, so what opportunities does this – or any other forthcoming fund raising events – give for working together or simply having some fun.

Remember to celebrate what’s been good about the past 12 months. Has anyone learnt a new skill, or achieved a qualification since the start of lockdown? Who has had a significant event, birthday, or anniversary, and missed out on the opportunity to celebrate with others? What achievements have you had within the business: supporting key workers, new services, renovations, etc?

Take action to maintain a team spirit

If you only do one thing, whether your team are working from home or on furlough, find a reason to get everyone together to have some fun and banter.

related posts: Teamwork ~ Mixing things up

related video:  Purpose

Quick wins

easy wins


Do you get that feeling of satisfaction when you cross things off your list, or is that just me?

Conventional wisdom says get the worse things out of the way first. As Brain Tracy referred to it as “Eat That Frog”.

But if your team are on furlough or working from home I believe it’s going to be hard enough for them getting back into the swing of things as it is when they come back to work.

So give them the opportunity to tick some things off their list early on, so they feel they are seeing some results within the first few days back.

Consider now what short-term projects or goals can you set everyone, which eases them in gently, but still results in some quick wins. It will certainly help focus attention back onto the job in hand, and get everyone back into full flow as quickly as possible.

Put tangible metrics in place to measure progress and success; it will be far more rewarding when they are can recognise success for themselves.

Give each individual team member responsibility over specific activities. This gives a sense of pride and ownership.

If you only do one thing:

Set short term goals for yourself and everyone in your team, so you have something to work towards this week.



Attracting New Recruits

attracting new recruits

On last week’s UK Hospitality Forum Clubhouse discussion, I was asked about attracting new recruits.

Why is this important now?

For many businesses, plans are now underway for re-opening; which is brilliant news. But it would be naïve to think we can just pick up where we left off.

Team members who have been on furlough for anything from 4 months to maybe even 14 months will be experiencing all sorts of emotions.

Whilst some will be relieved they have a job to come back to, or looking forward to  seeing all their colleagues again, others may be suffering from survivor’s remorse, be worried about how the job has changed, or sad to leave new-found ways of spending their time.

Before I get onto the subject of attracting new recruits, the main part of the conversation centred on engaging your team post lockdown.

With this in mind I am running a free webinar next week on

How to Re-engage Your Team After Furlough

Wednesday 10th March, 10.30 – 11.15

If you’d like to get ahead of the game and start getting your team ready for their return join me then by registering here via Eventbrite:


Attracting New Recruits

The past year has given people plenty of time for reflection. It’s possible some of your most loyal team members have had other thoughts about their career. Is their current role (or redefined role) really what they want?

If this is the case you may find yourself needing to recruit, either now or as you get back to full capacity.

So, back to the question: how to attract new recruits?

Here are 8 factors to help you get started with attracting new recruits and getting the best fit for your business.

1. Be a place people want to work

You can’t create a culture overnight where the best employees will want to work, but ensure you are doing everything to retain your reputation as a good employer.

Your existing team should be your greatest advocates;  if they feel valued they are far more likely to recommend you to others and spread the word that it’s a great place to work. So, continue to maintain communication and engagement with your existing team.

What does it mean to work for you? Ask your existing employees for their perspective of what they value about working for you, so you can share this with prospective employees.

2. Your purpose

You’ll want to attract people who will fit well into your business; people who resonate with your purpose and values. The more you can demonstrate these in your recruitment process, the more likely it is to get a good match.

It’s quite possible this has changed over the last 12 months; now is the perfect time to review this, and of course share this with your existing team too.

3. Career path

Demonstrate in your recruitment there’s potential to grow and develop. This means you’re more likely to attract people who see this as a potential longer-term career move, rather than somebody who is simply desperate for any job.

4. The role

It’s all too easy to focus on replacing like for like. When you have a vacancy it might be an ideal opportunity to restructure to open up opportunities for your existing loyal team members, and potentially giving you more flexibility in terms of potential candidates that can fulfil the new role.

Even if you keep the role as it is, upskill and cross train your existing team, so you have the flexibility amongst the team, and you’re not left in the lurch if you can’t recruit straightaway.

5. Transferable skills

What other industries employ people with suitable transferable skills? Rather than focusing on experience in similar roles, put the emphasis on these transferable skills, so you can widen the net to attract people from other industries.

Introducing some fresh blood can bring some fresh perspectives and ideas.

6. Be specific

There are certainly plenty of people at the moment looking for work. So there is a potential danger you will be inundated with hundreds of applicants for any one role. But if none of those are suitable, that doesn’t really help much. So be specific about the attributes and attitudes you want for the role, so you are only attracting the most suitable candidates.

If you want someone enthusiastic, dynamic and lively make your ad enthusiastic, dynamic and lively too! You’re not looking to attract anyone who’s desperate for a job; make it clear what you’re looking for and who fits the bill of the ideal candidate.

7. An inside job

Let your existing team members know of any positions you’re recruiting for.

Even if this is not a step up, it may present a new challenge for one of your existing team to keep them motivated or stretched.  And people know people like themselves, so they are well placed to share details of the vacancy.

If you do have internal applicants treat them in the same way as your external ones – acknowledging receipt of their application, interviews, offer letters, salary details, etc.  If internal candidates do not get the job ensure you give feedback to help with their development and to encourage them to apply for future positions.

8. No regrets

Start your induction process at the point they accept your job offer. Let them know how much you are looking forward to them coming to work for you.

Drip feed information that lets them know that they’re going to get a warm welcome. This might include a background to your business, your values and what’s important to you, current topical information, your reopening plans, an invitation to any team building/events/social activities happening between now and their start date, a copy of their induction programme and the point of contact for day one.

Doing all this before they start will make them feel more welcome and minimise that risk of any second thoughts.

Take Action

If you only do one thing: Talk to each of your team members well ahead of their return date to check how they are feeling and if they have any concerns about coming back to work.

Related article:  How to Attract, Recruit and Retain Great Staff