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  1. mtayp01

    mtayp01 Entrepreneur

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    As employers (particularly for small to medium enterprises), when do you give out bonuses? What guideline/s do you follow? Do you pay higher than the industry standard or do you just follow what the norm is?
     

  2. Kathryn M.

    Kathryn M. Entrepreneur

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    I have a small business and I love giving out bonuses. I feel like it's the life blood of my business and my employees love it.

    When an employee is first hired, I do not say anything about bonuses. I am already giving them regular pay that is generous, so employees are happy just to receive that. I will surprise them with a bonus later.

    Once I begin I notice all the work has been getting done, attitudes are positive, and employees are genuinely making an effort to help me reach my financial goals, I then start giving bonuses. Employees are always so shocked and happy. I think that is the real reason I give bonuses. I like to see people's reactions. The unexpected money really cheers them up and can brighten someone's entire week.

    Whenever I have a good month where I make a lot more than usual, I will share some of it with employees as a bonus for helping me make the extra income. I feel very strongly about rewarding employees. It keeps morale up, and it makes them want to come to work and do whatever it takes to get the bonus.
     
    Michelle likes this.
  3. pwarbi

    pwarbi Entrepreneur

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    Bonuses don't just have to be of monetary value. While it's true that most employees will work to earn a living, but keeping them happy while they are there is also key to success also.

    Everybody likes a bnus in their wage packet, but at the same time they also like to be well thought of aswell. If we've had a particularly productive week, while I might not be able to show my appreciation financially, I can do it in other ways.

    The working day on a Friday finishes at 5 but a few times we've got to 11am and I've walked in and said thanks for all your efforts this week, go. Go and start your weekend early and I've let them go home but still be paid for the full day.

    While they haven't got anything extra financially, they appreciate that I've took note of their hard work and I appreciate them.

    Small things like that can go a long way in keeping employees happy.
     
    Michelle likes this.
  4. dyanmarie25

    dyanmarie25 Entrepreneur

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    I think giving out bonuses to employees is really necessary to make them feel more motivated to work even harder. Bonuses would serve as a reward to the employees for their hard work and productivity.
     
  5. mtayp01

    mtayp01 Entrepreneur

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    @Kathryn M. and @pwarbi, your employees are really fortunate to have you guys as employers. As an employee myself (and hopefully a future employer), the need to have a good and healthy working environment where people are rewarded not just financially (though financially is good! :D) is something I constantly seek from a workplace. It's nice to see employers like you value the efforts of those who toil for the success of your businesses.
     
    Michelle and pwarbi like this.
  6. pwarbi

    pwarbi Entrepreneur

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    I actually sold the business I had and I now work for myself, by myself but at the time I tried to be a good employer and I'm sure my employees thought well of me so I thank you for your comments.

    I think what helped me was the fact that I started out as an employee and I saw employers treat their staff like dogs a lot of the time and its one thing being firm, you have to also be fair aswell and I didn't see a lot of fairness, I can tell you that.
     
    Michelle likes this.
  7. Kathryn M.

    Kathryn M. Entrepreneur

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    You are absolutely right. A day off, or getting off early, works just as well as a monetary bonus. Especially if they are still getting paid for the time they are given off. A lot of employers will agree to a day off or leaving early, but they definitely will not pay for it. Sometimes you have to let your employees feel like they are gaining something by working for you. That gives them an incentive to stay. People that I've hired in the past from places like oDesk always come back and let me know they are available to work again. I never have to go out of my way to find them again. They already know how they will be treated and that I offer legitimate work for fair pay. It just makes me cringe when I see employers taking advantage of the very people who help them earn the money they have in the first place.

    Thank you. Playing fair is my first priority when it comes to employees. If I can't afford to pay a decent or fair amount to make it worth their time, then I do not feel it is morally right to hire anyone. I am just taking up their time when they could be making more somewhere else. Instead, I will hire an intern to work for free and then reward them with credits towards their degree program, which is like gold to a student.

    That's exactly what happened to me. I've worked for a number of bad employers and grew tired of their antics. When I started my business, I thought back to all the jobs I had and which ones I felt I performed best. It was no surprise that all the jobs I performed at best were the jobs where my boss was friendly, fair, and approachable. I didn't mind going the extra mile for them because I knew they appreciated it. Even if they never gave me a monetary reward, their appreciation for my efforts was a reward. That was the kind of environment I wanted my business to have.

    The places where the management exploited and used the workers for whatever they could get, changed the rules when it suited them best, talked down to employees, and felt they were superior to their workers, I did not excel in those places. Those employers have no clue what it means to be a team player, nor do they even want to be a team player. They just want to control and dominate people, which doesn't produce any results long term.
     
    Michelle and pwarbi like this.
  8. pwarbi

    pwarbi Entrepreneur

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    I couldn't agree more to be honest. I wasn't one to go in for all these managerial courses either. Learn how to speak to your staff. Learn how to get the most of your staff...all that nonsense.

    I think to be a good manager or boss, you shouldn't have to learn how to 'control' people, you just have to be approachable and just treat them how you would want to be treated. It sounds like a cliche but we know that if we get treated badly, then we didn't perform at our best, so why would we expect them to be any different?
     
    Michelle likes this.
  9. mtayp01

    mtayp01 Entrepreneur

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    @Kathryn M. and @pwarbi, if I may ask, what business/businesses are you involved in and how did you begin?
     
  10. pwarbi

    pwarbi Entrepreneur

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    Mine was a car parts service, delivering parts to various garages in the local area. It was a small privately owned business with one owner, 2 staff members and 5 drivers.

    I started as a driver then went into the office side of things, securing new customers and offering our services to new businesses in the area. It was something I'd never done before but was pretty good at it as I had a lot of contacts in the local area anyway.

    I always got on well with the owner and as he got older he delegated more and more of the business to me until eventually I ran the business and he was more of a silent owner.
     
  11. Kathryn M.

    Kathryn M. Entrepreneur

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    I started a small online fashion and beauty business back in 2001. I always wanted to be an entrepreneur, so I was already a natural at that part. However, I also completed a fashion degree and a business degree so I would have professional level skills to bring to the business. I sold products on eBay until I was done with school and able to create my own websites to sell my products.

    Now I work from home, another dream of mine, and work my business full time.
     
  12. pwarbi

    pwarbi Entrepreneur

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    From car parts to fashion, it just shows the amount of businesses and opportunities that are out there for people, as long as they put their mind to it and are willing to work.
     
    Michelle and Kathryn M. like this.
  13. Kathryn M.

    Kathryn M. Entrepreneur

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    Exactly. There really is opportunity everywhere. I think that may have been a problem I had when I first graduated college. There was so much to get into that it kinda sort of paralyzed my growth for a while. I was trying many different things because it was exciting, but before I knew it, time was passing by and I really had to force myself to choose one or just a few things to take seriously and grow them. For a business owner, there is nothing worse than wasted time!
     
  14. pwarbi

    pwarbi Entrepreneur

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    I have to agree and while I think it is important to try different ideas and it can be useful to not know the exact route your going to take, I think you have to get to a point were you have to decide what road your going down.

    I know people that have only ever wanted to do one thing in life since being a child. When they eventually get to do what they've always wanted, they realise it's not what they thought it would be but they're stuck then as they haven't kept any other options open.
     
  15. Cleveland76

    Cleveland76 Entrepreneur

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    Well there are multiple types of raises and bonuses that can be given out. A standard "cost of living" raise should always be set aside in your budget. The cost of everything has gone up in the past 10-15 years and continues to do so, you've got to watch out for your employees well being too, and make sure they are able to make ends meet at home. The cost of replacing them is going to be far more expensive, if they decide to move on to some other role somewhere else for better pay.

    But beyond that, to me it's not just about raises, but mentoring your employees to gradually take on greater responsibilities within your business. You're not just giving them a raise because they're "due for one" but they have in fact earned it because they are doing more for you and your company.

    Bonuses, I get a little concerned about. I've worked for companies that handed out "christmas bonuses" each year as a gift. But when the company started going through hard times, when it came time for those "christmas bonuses" that people were counting on the whole year, they didn't give them out anymore, which really put some employees in a bind. I think if you're going to do something like that, you should let them know as early as possible that you are going to be doing away with them in the coming year, so they can start putting aside money for that themselves. It's irresponsible to tell them on October or November that they won't be getting it.
     
  16. ReadmeByAmy

    ReadmeByAmy Entrepreneur

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    My sister had a business a water refilling station and when I was still single she hired me to be in charge of the accounting records of the business. My sister is busy in her career as a human resources manager in a Japanese firm employing 5000 employees that is why she had no time to monitor her small business. So most of the time I am the one who goes there to check the performance of the people working there like the sales women, the washers and the helpers who do the refilling and the delivery men. We are generous to our workers and we treat them as members of our family already. We do give incentives and bonuses especially if they had big sales and good performance. And during the holiday season that is the time where aside from the incentives and bonuses we give them gift certificates, a sack of rice and grocery items as part of their bonuses. It is such a good feeling if you are an employer who are valuing the hard work of your employees. Giving and sharing to others is very fulfilling to the heart.
     
  17. pwarbi

    pwarbi Entrepreneur

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    When it comes to bonusses, you always have to be careful I feel because if one person deserves a bonus, there might be others on that team who don't, but you can't give to one but not to the other.

    Or can you...?
     
  18. harpazo22

    harpazo22 Entrepreneur

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    Bonuses are great when well deserved. And I know very few people who go over the industry standard.
     
  19. pwarbi

    pwarbi Entrepreneur

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    Employees these days seem to expect a bonus for the time of year, rather than because they have earned it. Christmas bonus is just one example and if your a small business owner with only a few employees it's almost as if you HAVE to provide a bonus otherwise they'll think you're a scrooge type character!
     

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