Treat your staff the way you would want to be treated.

I am a big believer in the Golden Rule. You know it, right? “Treat people the way you would want to be treated.” It’s a great rule to apply to clients that come into your store. How would you expect to be treated when entering a fine jewelry store? How would you expect to interact with the staff? What things would you want to see if you were a client? It’s a simple rule to live by ... or is it?

As my store continues to grow, I have encountered many potential team members desperate to leave their current jobs (in many industries) because of their managers. At what point does the Golden Rule stop applying in their job to the point that they feel like indentured servants — working simply for a paycheck because they have to pay their bills? You know there was a day when they were excited to accept their current job ... so when did they stop caring?

"Look in the mirror and ask yourself, honestly, would you want to work for you?””

Take a look in the mirror and ask yourself — honestly — would you want to work for you?

Do you come in, bark orders, micromanage and think every employee is out to ruin your business? How often do you feel that if you don’t oversee everything, it will all just be wrong? Are there days you (through actions or with words) let your team know your disappointment in the business, their work, their efforts, their lack of attentiveness?

Why are you still calling them employees, rather than team members? Until you become a part of your own team, you will face everything alone. That’s a place I would never want to be! Stop playing childish games, quit looking at the world as though everything is everyone else’s fault, put on your adult panties, and be the bigger person who can recognize when something is wrong. Take responsibility as the owner or manager and find a way to fix it.

Start today. Be kind to your employees, and give them the power and ability to make your business better. Respect their ideas, listen to their concerns, and empower them to offer solutions to correct and improve. I can guarantee that if you become someone you would be proud to work for, you will see a change in your business dynamic ... and probably your profits, too!

Jennifer Farnes is the owner and master faceter at Revolution Jewelry Works in Colorado Springs, CO, an honorable mention winner in the Small Cool division of this year’s America’s Coolest Stores competition.

This article originally appeared in the October 2016 edition of INSTORE.

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