As a business owner, you have finally been able to hire that employee. It has been said that the only way to grow is to hire employees to do expand the amount of time that you are able to work on your business rather than in your business. At this point, you are on a high, you have that employee that you have always seen as the next step in your successful, growing business.
After a few days, we begin to see the cracks and challenges that the employee is facing. Employees are unable to make decisions, to ask for a sale, or to calm frustrated customers down. This comes from one of two things, either there are not systems in place to guide the employees in their learning or they just lack the confidence to move forward and learn what is placed in front of them. There are many articles and books on how to create systems, Traction by Gino Wickman and much of what Jim Collins has written in his books. There are not as many discussions on how to help build or instill confidence with your employees.
There are four steps that will create a stable platform of confidence within your employees. This applies to your business, personal as well as your family. For your business, this will allow your culture, your team development, and your bottom line to grow profitably. From the personal and family side of more self-confidence, it will create relationships that are open to clear communication and healthy interaction.
Step One: Discovering your purpose.
One of the most misunderstood aspects of finding your purpose is to clearly define the direction of your life. Your purpose is not the end objective but rather the process, journey, or what I like to call the adventure of your life. It is your guiding North Star, something that you don’t reach but will give you the ability to improve and become more than you are today.
Finding your purpose is part of a discovery. Learning what not only motivates but what excites you to get out of bed each morning. The end should look something like the way that you will change or impact those that you come in contact. Each day, how will you positively change the lives you touch? Are you seeking to leave the world a better place? Then more specifically, how will you accomplish this?
For your employees, you will need to start at a level that they will understand. It is at this point that I would suggest starting with a book like Dream Manager by Matthew Kelly. The process begins with identifying a dream that they have, then teaching them how to build a plan around accomplishing this dream. Once they have set and accomplished one of their dreams their confidence will soar. It could be something as simple as a planned three-day backpacking trip or more complex like getting financially stable to purchase a home. Each of these steps leads to the greater desire to find a purpose that will leave an impact but be careful to start small and build-up for the purpose of changing the world.
Step Two: Setting up for wins.
Setting the wins is about finding those daily actions, habits, and routines that will allow the individual to gain some quick wins and build confidence in something that is a known controllable activity. It is critical to building confidence from something that easy to then step into things that seem impossible at the beginning.
I had a client that was struggling with his sales individual. The individual struggled with the idea that the demand for a monthly dollar goal, per week or month, was too much to comprehend. We were able to reframe the outlook and break this into some daily activities that would allow them to accomplish and even exceed their monthly goal for sales volume. It was a simple as setting the KPI up for how many calls did you make for the day, how many signs you put out for the week, and how many contacts did you make. It was these manageable activities that lead them to exceed their sales quota for the month.
Step three: Reframing your mindset.
Society often defines what we should be focused on. Unfortunately, this is not always the best thing for you or for your employee. Psychology has shown us that what we focus on will grow but we also know that if we focus on things that go against our core values we end up frustrated and hesitant, leading to a lack of self-confidence.
The same individual struggling with the sales numbers and meeting quotes could not see the connection between the sales closing ratio and the core value of helping customers while meeting their needs. There a misunderstanding in the alignment of the message. The question that was asked unbeknownst to all is that if we say we are here to help meet a need but then our company is focused just on the sale, how are we truly helping meet needs? Reframing is taking the words that are used to define the KPI from ‘Closing Rate’ to “Helping Rate’. Another example is to align them with your core value statements. If your core value is to leave a positive impact on your customers then your KPI should be ‘Impact Rate’ instead of ‘Closing Rate’.
Step four: Act as if…
When you act as if, you must be doing so with authenticity. Acting as if, and conflicting against your core value will come off with the ‘dig me spirit’ or as a used car salesman. No one wants that, no one will put up with this and it will not build long term relationship with customers that become part of your tribe.
Acting as if is the ability to take on a spirit that will instill confidence within your action. The Alter EGO by Todd Herman talks about using props to take on a character that matches what you need to accomplish. Using a prop allows you to transform your mind from a passive sales individual into a sales individual that is there to meet the customer needs and truly solve their challenges.
The common phrase of wearing multiple hats is an example of how we take on different roles within our business, personal, and family lives. Embracing these roles and understanding what it takes to make those roles successful in a clue on how to use props to grow ourselves and our employees into the people we dream of becoming.
Your confidence, your employee’s confidence is one of the fundamental principles of growth. The growth will include areas of personal, social, mental, and spiritual. All of these will lead to a stronger more profitable company.