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5 approaches your company should banish to a desert island

Far too many companies are governed by long-established rules that are often outdated and over-strict when it comes to what’s okay and what’s not. Companies are in general too controlled by money and KPIs when they should be more focused on how to stand out and provide extraordinary service. KPIs need to be pushed off the throne and replaced by NPS. We need employees who dare to make mistakes and take chances – edgy employees who are different. Likewise, we need innovative companies who dare to stand out from the crowds.

How do we achieve this? A good question. To get started, read this article – 5 approaches you should banish to a desert island. 

1.    Getting read the riot act

You cannot make mistakes. If you make mistakes, you’ll get fired or get read the riot act. What kind of mentality is that? Everyone make mistakes. If I got punished every time I made a mistake, then I personally would not be able to hold down a job. You make your company much more ineffective when you convince your employees that they cannot make mistakes. Additionally, the pressure will prevent your employees from taking chances and being creative – resulting in negative consequences for your company. You will not have anyone who thinks innovatively and nobody will admit it if they make a mistake. And just to be clear: you cannot avoid mistakes happening.

2.  The turtle and the hare

Hug the world. Be open-minded to all the amazing possibilities the world has to offer your company.  Many companies and workplaces are too rigid and narrow-minded. There has to be space for new, creative ideas. Is there an unwritten rule that says you cannot try too many new things? So much can happen; you cannot be prepared for every eventuality. Like everything else in life, you will not get anywhere if you do not try. There is a high likelihood that things will go wrong if you do not endeavour to develop and grow as a company. You end up being the turtle that is being overtaken by the hare.

3.  Sales vs. customer service

As mentioned at the beginning of the article “Why your salesmen are not your best sales representatives”, far too many companies focus solely on sales. Sales is of course important for a company to make ends meet, but the notion that sales is the most important factor needs to be changed. Customer service that goes the extra mile and stands out from that of other companies will in the long run make your company more reputable. You need to collect customer ambassadors who are keen to recommend your company to family and friends. That is the best, most valuable marketing you can get.

4. Always disappointed and dissatisfied

If this sounds like you – never satisfied – then you will always be beating yourself and your employees up because nothing is good enough. Definitely not the best approach! Arrange a party or enjoy a night out with dinner when you have reached a goal! Reach for the stars, but remember to reward yourself and your employees along the journey to those stars. As a result of these small rewards, you will see increased motivation and creativity throughout the company.

5. The working zombie

You probably know the feeling: it is 5:00 p.m. and your working day is over – on paper! You still have tonnes more to do but your head is about to explode. None of your colleagues has left and of course no one wants to be the first to end their day and leave as soon as the clock hits 5:00 p.m – oh, no; you need to stay at the office at least an hour more before you can even begin to think about packing your bag and heading home. Why is it like this? It seems that no working day ever ends at 5:00 p.m. – but isn’t it more about actually being effective and doing what’s expected during the normal working day; i.e., from 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.? A great deal of research has shown that you take almost double the time to do a task when you are tired and frustrated. Do not let yourself turn into a working zombie. Get as much as possible done throughout your day. Stay longer if really necessary – but remember, you will not necessarily get anything worthwhile and useable done when you stay at the office till 11:00 p.m. 

So, we’ve banished those 5 approaches. What should we bring back from the desert island?

1. Your high spirits and your thankfulness about how far your company has come. Enjoy a small party and pat yourself on the back to celebrate your success.

2. Amazing customer service. It is proven that amazing customer service creates more customer ambassadors and a more successful company. Make your new hobby collecting customer ambassadors.

3. Have a sense of when it is time to go home instead of staying in the office as a zombie and not creating anything worthwhile and useable.

4. Welcome with open arms any new opportunities that could make your company grow when it is time for it, and take chances when there is a need for new challenges.

5. Be patient and open to new ideas and inputs, and allow space for mistakes. This way, your employees will be more effective, creative and innovative.

This article was written by Freja Theilgaard.