Whether or not they realize it, employees’ behavior in the workplace is a critical ingredient in your business recipe for success. Customers and vendors observe office behavior on a regular basis, and it’s important to make sure your employees are sending the right messages. As a leader or manager in your organization, you can encourage proper business behavior and work professionalism in your environment by implementing the following tips:
Give Respect to Get Respect
If you want to encourage the office behavior of respect, you must start by giving it to others at all times. From the receptionist at the front desk to the CEO of the company, modeling respectful attitudes toward all people is the first step in fostering work professionalism. Respect must also be given to individuals who come into contact with you that are not part of the company, including delivery persons, office equipment repair persons, property managers and especially customers.
Acknowledge and Encourage Others
Another way to foster proper business behavior is by acknowledging and encouraging employees who display desirable actions. For example, you may observe a positive interaction between a customer and employee on the sales floor. It is appropriate to verbally acknowledge the employee immediately, and in the future, you may want to recognize excellence formally before other employees in a meeting.
Nip Bad Habits Immediately
Just like acknowledgment and encouragement are important, it is also critical that you make an effort to discourage negative behaviors. Addressing improper office behavior in the moment is imperative. Don’t hesitate to take employees aside and address issues of work professionalism immediately. Business behavior is learned, and you must be on the lookout for opportunities to teach and train your staff.
If you desire a certain type of work professionalism in your company, then you must be consistent in your expectations. Define the type of office behavior you desire and never waver from the standard model. Employees will be able to understand your goals and objectives more clearly if they are always consistent. It doesn’t hurt to develop a code of conduct and post a list of what is expected regarding office behavior.
The most important factor in encouraging work professionalism is maintaining open lines of communication with your employees. By being active and present in the workplace, you can encourage better business behavior and create opportunities for your employees to communicate with you. The more visible you are, the more receptive your employees will be to criticism and feedback regarding office behavior.
Developing positive business behavior in your workforce is an ongoing task. You will need to make a conscious effort to model work professionalism and encourage others to do the same. As a leader or manager in your small business, you can be a proactive agent for change and help your employees modify office behavior. The end-result will be a more pleasant working environment with a productive workforce.