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Who is Your Best Employee?
By: Teresa Mitchell, Wendy Ogryzek and June Bachman ~ 9/14/2010

A simple definition of labor, is something produced by work. In the spirit of Labor Day, the national holiday that celebrates the esprit de corps of workers in Canada and the United States we would like to point out the parallels between the qualities of the best employees (laborers) and your website.

Recognize that your best employee begins with the hiring process and your ability to hire for the future.  That is the beginning determinant to realize a profit from the investment that you make in an employee. To do that successfully, you first must understand the position, the job, you are hiring for. An analysis of the position you are filling will give you valuable insights into the qualities you are seeking, what you need to instill or convey in your best employees to make them top performers in your organization. A thoughtful and thorough analysis of what you need done means that you are positioned to hire top talent that will produce more than your “salary” costs. The same is true of your website. When you understand fully what you are trying to accomplish with your website – sell, inform, inspire, reduce administrative costs, generate sales leads – you will hire developers to build and manage your site to accomplish your objectives.

So what makes for top talent in the workplace and top talent on the internet?

Great communication skills. Your best employees have the ability to communicate – with coworkers, suppliers and customers. Excellent written skills are a must. Your website, as with your best employee, should possess the ability to express itself accurately and clearly with good grammar, vocabulary and perfect spelling. Take a few minutes and objectively visit your website to find if your best employee has:

  • Effectively conveyed your core messages.
  • Misspelled words.
  • Used proper grammar.

Personality. Your best employees have a personality and easily recognizable personality traits. Some positive personality traits are:

  • Considerate.
  • Courteous.
  • Enthusiastic.
  • Cheerful.
  • Friendly.
  • Honest.
  • Interested.
  • Optimistic.
  • Unselfish.
  • Self-reliant.

Your website should reflect the personality of your organization. If you and your team are fun and funny, your website should be fun and funny too. If your organization is unselfish your website should give things away – information and solutions.

Appearance. Best employees dress in a manner that reflects the personality and professionalism of your organization. Employees and websites cast and instill a positive, professional image of your organization in the minds of your customers. If your website has a dated or unkempt appearance:

  • Tidy it up.
  • Give it a makeover.
  • Refresh its appearance.

Flexibility and adaptability. Best employees and the most effectively managed websites have a willingness to find creative solutions to difficult problems. As do your best employees your website should:

  • Shift gears swiftly.
  • Change quickly to capitalize on new or previously unseen opportunities.
  • Adapt to changed circumstance.
  • Test new ideas and track their performance.

Loyalty. Best employees speak well of their workplace, supervisor and position. They never breach trust. Rather, like your website, they build trust, one customer at a time by:

  • Providing useful information.
  • Solving their customer’s problems either directly or linking their questions to the correct answer.
  • Following-up and following-through.

Time management. Great employees and great websites manage their time effectively. They:

  • Schedule and keep appointments.
  • Take time to send reminders and status reports to customers.
  • Are available 24/7 to provide information, inspiration, solutions.

High standards of professionalism. Websites and frontline employees exude high standards, they are the first professional face your customer sees and interacts with. They reflect the personality of your organization and the professionalism your customer can expect when they choose to do business with you.

Innovation. Great employees are innovative, they are always looking for ways to streamline and pave the way of the path of least resistance. They are creative and use creative ways to serve their internal and external customers. The best websites are innovative too. They use creative ways to:

  • Build customer loyalty.
  • Instill trust.
  • Give away useful information.
  • Generate sales leads.

Evaluations. The best of the best employees expect a thoughtful and thorough evaluation of their job performance. Your website deserves the same thoughtful attention to:

  • Acknowledge achievements.
  • Expand duties.
  • Discover previously unseen opportunities.
  • Delegate more effectively.
  • Motivate others more completely.
  • Strive to achieve the best, most profitable, results on your investment (time and money).

Work ethic. Skills aren’t enough and while your best employees might not relish the thought of being on call 24/7 for your customers, your website enthusiastically accepts the challenge. Your website does not need sleep, rest, vacation time, sick leave or personal time off. Like your best employee, your website:

  • Leaves their family problems at home.
  • Has your customer’s best interest in mind.
  • Follows the rules of the organization.
  • Always does their best.
  • Works for their pay.
  • Gets along well with co-workers and customers.
  • Is willing to start at the bottom in an entry level position and work their way up.
  • Has good attendance. They are as dependable as the servers that take them live to the web.
  • Never complains or asks for a raise.
  • Works independently.
  • Always has a positive attitude.

Your website’s work ethic is incomparable to any employee you have ever had or ever will have!

And, much like your best employee, your website doesn’t operate in a vacuum without your input, ideas, guidance, inspiration, vision, goals, and expectations. So in the spirit of this Labor Day, take time to give your best employee, your website, a thoughtful and thorough employee evaluation. Correct what needs to be corrected so it represents the personality of your organization, assists you in attaining the goals of your organization and takes you one step closer to your vision of your future!