Building a business and scaling it up is not easy, but one of the best ways to learn more ingenious ways to grow is to learn from others that have done it. Galen M. Hair, Owner of Insurance Claim HQ, read loads of books by CEOS, read entrepreneurship articles, and watched interviews with great leaders when his business was in its early stages.
He took much of what he learned to heart and put it into practice at his company. The wisdom he acquired led to business success for him. In just a few years, he grew his small insurance company from just a dozen employees to over 800 workers.
Now, he’s ready to share his tips on team-building, treating staff well, and managing a growing number of employees.
Remember to Be a Team Player
When things get tough, remember that you are there for your team, and they are there for you. Never look at employees as adversaries, but always as people who can help you meet shared goals.
When the COVID-19 outbreak began in 2019, Hair gathered his employees for a meeting to let them know his thoughts and reassure them that they’d all be alright. “Money might get tight. But if you fight for us, we’ll fight for you.” During the worldwide pandemic, he did not lay off any employees — and none of them left the company either.
The better you treat your employees; whether they are maintenance staff or your CFO, the happier everyone will be and the more that will be accomplished.
Another Hair tip is to lead with empathy. If someone in your employ is underperforming or struggling, ask them how the company can support them. Remember that you don’t know what’s going on in their lives outside the office, and compassion can go a long way. Hair also teaches his senior staff to lead their own teams in this style. No matter what rank or title an employee has, Hair always respects his employees.
Do Good Together
Getting together for company-led community projects is an excellent way to team-build while giving back to your local area. Organize events, collection drives, and community charity initiatives that your employees can get involved with — and make sure that you take part as well.
Hair has worked with his staff in rebuilding over 800 businesses and homes as part of his company’s work. But they have also gotten together for days of volunteering in their town and collecting toys for less fortunate children during the holidays.
Additional benefits of group charity work are that it boosts team morale and self-esteem and raises the company’s profile in the local area.
Keep Your Team in the Loop
The best leaders are transparent. Of course, you don’t want to leave the company ledgers on the break room table, but open communication is critical when growing and managing a large staff.
The truth is, your employees often know when things are not going well, and ignoring it or never addressing the elephant in the room will only make them lose trust in you.
In times of difficulty, it’s better to give your staff the information they deserve. This strategy works two-fold. Firstly, it inspires your team to trust you. Secondly, it gets people re-focused on work. For example, if there is gossip flying around about company affairs that haven’t been addressed, it distracts people from doing their work — especially if they think that the matter at hand could put their jobs in jeopardy.
“You can be transparent without oversharing. You can be vulnerable without sending shockwaves of panic through your people. Being upfront means walking that line with your head held high,” Hair explained.
Support What You Stand For
Building a company culture will let your growing staff know what kind of business they are joining and what it stands for.
“Create a company culture that exemplifies your values. If you look forward to coming to work every day because you made a bubble that fosters creativity, care, innovation, whatever keeps you driving, your employees will feel the same way.”
Keeping a defined culture, leading with empathy and my example, and doing good for others are great ways to lead a growing tea. They have worked well for Hair and can work for you as well.
About Galen M. Hair
Galen M. Hair, Owner at Insurance Claim HQ, is a property insurance attorney who has helped over 800 families rebuild their homes and businesses. He has been rated a Super Lawyers Rising Star and voted one of the National Trial Lawyers Top 100. Click here to learn more about protecting your property from disaster. www.insuranceclaimhq.com