As a business grows the need for clear roles, performance management, effective teams and regular feedback – in essence sound Human Resource Management – increases rapidly, and if not addressed can significantly impact on the capability of the business.

 Not only does the need increase but failure to address it early can have dire consequences for the performance of the business.  Too often situations arise, and pain points appear in the business because a proactive approach to People Management is not implemented at the outset.

I do a lot of work with business owners in this area and can see that there is a real hesitancy and avoidance to ‘tackle’ these needs, and I am left wondering why, so I thought I would ‘unpack’ some of that.  Probably the most common belief is that small businesses don’t need Human Resource Management – that it’s simply for ‘big business’.   Further to that, business owners and managers tell me they don’t know where to start.  They don’t believe they have the skills.  Well, here’s the thing…people are people, no matter the size or nature of the business.  Any business which relies on people to produce outcomes that impact on revenue (ie any service-based business) is highly dependent on its people.  They are most probably (certainly the case in Real Estate) the single biggest expense in the business.  So, let’s explore this common-sense approach to managing them. 

Every cent spent on people is an investment in the outcomes of the business.   If you think about this statement, then it begs a whole series of deeper but equally simple questions… ‘What is the return on that investment?  What is our revenue generated in the business per person employed?  How does each person’s performance impact on revenue?  What structures and processes have we implemented to enable us to measure and address these metrics?   Have we set up work flows and tasks to ensure that we have the most efficient models of delivery?   What feedback do our customers give us on our people and the way in which they are served?’  When you answer these questions – truly answer them, you will be at the start of your Human Resource journey.    It does not need to be a complex process, so I encourage you to start with these questions and then address the issues that arise out of the answers.  

The second thing I see is fear.  Human Resource Management is so often confused with Industrial Relations.  Sure, there are very clear and important overlaps, but sound HR Management comes from a proactive desire to empower, enrich and develop your people so that they perform better and stay longer with your company.  Industrial matters, and the need for punitive legislated processes possibly only exist because of the inaction and inattention to basic Human Resource Management.  There is palpable fear and trepidation around ‘getting it wrong’ and this fear leads to inaction.  I am sure you can quickly recognise the logical outcome here and the need to just get started.  

So small is the new big, and inaction doesn’t work.   What else do we know about this subject?   The final point I wish to make is that employees the world over have some fairly common attributes.  They want to know what’s expected of them.  They want to know if they are meeting expectations and they crave feedback on their work.  They want to enjoy coming to work and they want to have a best friend at work.  All this means that employees want to stay longer where they work, but it conversely means they will leave if their workplace doesn’t meet their needs.  The person who has the capacity to meet those needs is their manager or leader.  In fact, around 50% of employees leave their job because of their manager. *

So, no matter which way you look at it, Human Resource Management is a critical pillar in business.  It exists in every business no matter how small and is not difficult to get started.  Despite these facts, the lack of it is still so common and so influential in business disruption.  If it is not on your priority list as a Manager, Leader or Business Owner, put it there today.  

If you would like to learn more about managing the Human Resources in your business – find out what works and why – implement some simple strategies – develop the skills for working to empower and develop your people you might be interested in our Accelerated Team Leader Training Skills Program.   

Click HERE to find out more.      

I look forward to hearing from you.

Rose Kelly


* www.gallup.com  2017


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