May 3, 2013

Fostering An Initiative Based Environment

Published: 3 May 2013 

Having staff that show initiative is a great thing and in digital marketing even more so than usual. As SEO advances into interesting and creative territory, the need for staff who are capable of not only carrying out tasks autonomously but thinking the same is paramount. If you can get a hold of a team of creative thinkers that get things done without having to be whipped, then the flow on effects in every other facet of your business are significant and positive.

Freeing Up Your Time

Whether you are the director of your business, or a manager, you are most likely time poor, and the last thing you need to be doing is micro managing. In digital marketing, so often the directors of the business are technical specialists, such as our illustrious leader Ben Maden. Ben has skills that we need to harness, like web dev, tech SEO and BDM. As a business we have much to gain from having someone of his seniority with a bit of free time on his hands to allow him to get creative and that is my plan going forward. To take the management out of his hands. However I don't aim to micro management, I want to nurture a team of creative, go-getters that show initiative right throughout their work.

How To Do It?

It starts with hiring. Bringing the right staff on board in the first place is paramount and helps your company culture. However finding a balance is hard and you can't disregard that some people may have excellent skills but not be a perfect cultural fit. You don't want to have too many rogues in your ranks either. So what do you do? Do you hire a team that have the skills and mould them? Do you hire a team that need no moulding and train them? No, as with everything it's all about balance and you have to do a little of both. If you catch lightning in a bottle and get a few highly motivated people wranglers who are also skilled it helps immensely. Unfortunately these highly sought after employees are also by and large gainfully and happily employed members of the workforce so you might struggle to find one.

Once we have our team I find the best way to foster initiative is to give an employee some responsibilities. It's a risk/reward strategy but you will usually find that given responsibility they then feel like a vital cog and take the ball and run with it. If they fail to meet their given responsibilities then you can gauge whether they are the right fit for your initiative based workplace.

Ben Maden

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