Growth and transition can be incredibly exciting times in any business. It can also be an incredibly stressful time as staff stretch to meet increased demand, learn new technology and otherwise work to increase the infrastructure of a company to meet the challenges of business growth. One major mistake businesses make is to expect existing staff to meet all the increasing needs of a growing business.
If your company is in the midst of a growth spurt, you can easily overload staff and burn out individuals, creating turn-over at a time when you really need consistency. There are things that can be done, however, to make transition and growth easier to handle and adjust to.
Don’t put off hiring new staff if the need is there. It is quite common for businesses to think that they will put off the addition of new staff in hopes that existing staff can take on the increased load. If you are expanding or have additional technological or special needs that cannot be met by current staff, take the plunge and hire new people to fill the need. The infusion of new blood at a time of transition can be a great boost to the overall optimism of a growth period. It will also allow existing staff to continue working without becoming overburdened.
If hiring new staff is impractical, bring in training, education, or consultants to help boost work efforts. If you have added new technology or machines, employees should be adequately trained and not expected to figure things out on their own. Bringing in a temporary consultant or trainer to make sure everyone is prepared and competent will keep the stress levels down and the productivity levels on the upswing.
Remember that signs of an overworked and burned out staff are increased absenteeism, illness, and accidents in the workplace. Overworked employees are more likely to have automobile accidents, injuries, and personal and family problems. Additionally, employee turnover and the need for mediation (for workplace disputes) will also blossom as workers become stressed and unhappy with working conditions if they are feeling overworked. Focusing on the optimistic opportunities of growth can help some, but there is only so much an individual can do in a productive work day. Find creative ways to reward staff-refreshments, extra time off, workplace celebrations-in times of transitional growth to keep moral high and keep staffers content.