How to Reward Your Staff

How to Recognize and Reward Staff

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Just as successful people have tricks that they use to help keep themselves motivated and feeling good — successful businesses also employ methods to keep their staff happy and motivated.

They’re simple methods. However, in spite of their simplicity, these little steps can go a long ways towards maintaining a good morale among your staff members.

Some companies hold an annual picnic.  They invite the staff, students, and their families out for a day of relaxing fun.  Often, they use that opportunity to recognize their employees in front of their friends and family.

They present their employees with awards and certificates thanking them for their excellence service to the community, and for a job well done at the studio.

Events like an annual picnic, an occasional “goodie” day, or movie night creates a feeling of camaraderie among staff members. Remember that while it’s important to conduct business in a professional manner, it’s equally important to  make time for fun and entertainment.

Show Your Staff Respect

Many students work their way up through the ranks to become members of the staff at the very school where they trained.  This can be beneficial to the school owner, since they know the history of their employee’s martial arts training. 

However, those shining examples of martial arts students are often at an increased risk for criticism by the very people who brought them up through the ranks. 

School owners often have difficulty thinking of these folks as anything but students.  When they don’t perform as well on the business end of things as they did on the studio floor, they become the target for exceptionally harsh words and criticism.

The rule is to treat your “student turned employee” with the same courtesy and respect that you would treat any other respected employee or paying student.

If you find that must offer constructive criticism to your employee, do it in private.  Never reprimand or criticize your employees in front of their class or co-workers.

Use Newsletters To Recognize Staff

A newsletter offers a perfect opportunity to recognize your staff’s accomplishments both in the school and in the community. 

Use it to introduce new staff members by printing their picture and a small biography about them in your newsletter.  Thank your employees for a job well done whenever you get an opportunity to do so.

Always let them know how much you appreciate them.

Make Your Staff Feel Important

You may have noticed the trend recently towards politically correct job titles.  At first, the concept sounded a bit silly. 

For instance, the person who gathers our trash each week is no longer called a garbage man.  He is now known as the sanitation engineer.

This simple little change in title added an air of sophistication to an important, yet not so glamorous job description.  It probably did wonders for the newly appointed “sanitation engineers” self-esteem. 

Now, when someone asks them what they do for a living, they can hold their heads high and proudly announce that they are the city’s sanitation engineers.

The same hold true for your staff. This is a very effective, inexpensive way to help make your staff members feel like an important part of your team. 

Don’t just call them instructors, title them “chief instructor”, or “black belt instructor”.  If you have an office staff, you can designate them “executive assistant”,  “program director”, or “director of activities.”

Go one better and present them with personalized business cards bearing their new titles.  These aren’t very expensive, and they can really go a long ways in keeping the level of morale high among your staff, as well as promote loyalty to your school.

Encourage Feedback And Ideas From Your Staff

A great way to help members of your staff to feel important is to encourage them to share their ideas on improving your school program with you.  Just sit back and watch what happens to their school spirit when they see one of their ideas implemented at your school.

Keep Your Staff Posted On School Information

It’s important to keep your staff advised of all upcoming activities.  They need to feel that they are a valuable part of your team – privy to the “inside” scoop. 

They particularly need to be kept current on whatever new promotional incentives you have in the works.  This is important in their dealings with studio customers. 

If your staff doesn’t seem to know what’s going on with your studio, it embarrasses them and looks bad on you and your school.  It’s important for them to have their facts straight.