Empower the Employee

At the Ritz-Carlton, they allow the employees to spend up to $2000, if necessary, to take care of a customer’s problem. Without management approval!

That is the way to do it. No micromanagement here. That is the main reason that their labor turnover rate is less than a third of most hospitality places.

Get them to feel ownership

This is just one way that businesses show respect for their staff. Sure, I bet they go through a rigorous training routine. But once they get past that, the employee is empowered. And it shows in their approach to the job.


The best compliment

The best compliment you can receive from a customer is when they ask you if you are the owner. Give your employees the chance to get that compliment!

There are many ways you can aid them in this endeavor. Start with the training. Be thorough in this. No short cuts. And then give them the chance to show you what they are capable of.

Respect them

This is another way that I find to be very effective. If they are respected by the authority figure, they will be more likely to help you succeed in your business. They will look out for theft, they will be eager to satisfy customers’ needs, they will get along better with coworkers, and will just overall look out for you.

When I say respect, I mean many things. Use their names. Feed them. Buy them a beer after work. But also that means to trust them. An employee who feels trusted–instead of micromanaged– will be more willing to go that extra mile.

Keep them in the loop

So many owners like to play things very close to the vest. Not tell their employees what is going on. I find that if you keep them up on the ins and outs of the business, they will also be willing to do more.

Let them know what is going on. Don’t be afraid to be a bit vulnerable. Trust them. Tell them about how sales are going. Tell them about what is up with the food costs. The beverage costs. The labor costs.

Turns out they will actually start looking out for you more. They will look for ways to waste less. They will be less likely to help themselves to that bottle of wine that has been sitting around forever. To that second or third free beer.

Finally, you can relax

If you do this right, train those employees correctly (and of course revisit that training), and then leave them alone, you can start to enjoy life a little more. No more 80 hour weeks because you feel the need to micromanage every detail.

Show them the way and then get out of the way. I think you will be surprised by the results. Happier employees, happier customers, happier owner.




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