The news is full of worry. The bridal trade is full of worry. With this in mind we need to look to the future, to remember why we love the wedding business so much – and to understand that the world will once again see couples wed in packed venues surrounded by their friends and family.
With this in mind we asked Helena Cotter from The Helena Cotter Training Academy for her top tips to help keep your inspiration and motivation levels high…
1 Relight your inner spark
Remember why you chose to open your business. The anticipation of trying something new, a dream come true and an industry you may have always wanted to be part of. Your historical decisions took a huge amount of strength, resilience, foresight – and bravery. All the emotions and feelings you still need in order to keep forging ahead with current and new business plans.
Remember past successes you have experienced. We tend to focus more on the future which is great, but in uncertain times, it can be scary too. So, look back to all the brilliant achievements you – and any staff you employ, have made – and continue to make.Think about how great it feels. Making important decisions and achieving business success, in an Industry, which let's be honest, can be blooming hard graft at the best of times!
2 Make things interesting
Often when we have a fairly set routine, and are making progress in a busy retail environment, the day job can become tiring and repetitive, which lowers motivation and mental stimulation. Why not look at things from a different angle? Alter the routine. Shake it up a bit. Question your standard processes and procedures. Look at ways you can manage systems more effectively in this changing retail environment.
There are great opportunities to be had – even in trying times. In fact, businesses often find they are more successful when up against it. Look to be a market leader with your innovative ideas when thinking outside the box. Feeling refreshed and enlightened will help you reignite and become even more inspired and motivated. Great for you, your team and customers.
3 Pat yourself on the back
When times are good you may be too busy, or forget to reward yourself and others. When things slow down – don't beat yourself up. It's a waste of energy. Say no to negativity. Create a climate of positivity. Think about what motivates you. Business success, happy customers, your company ethos, standards, reputation and of course, being a fantastic employer. You are doing a remarkable job. When you really think about how hard you work to consistently ensure your customers feel and look their absolute best, every single day of the week. That's quite a responsibility isn't it? And, a remarkable achievement.
4 Celebrate personal milestones
I love this idea. Be it a birthday, anniversary at work or at home for you or one of you team. It's great for morale, and team building. When employees feel valued, you remember and celebrate them, absenteeism reduces and productivity goes up. Genuinely feeling part of something special is the key to staff happiness.
5 Listen to your team
I always say staff feedback should be encouraged. Listen and respond to their concerns, ideas, and suggested changes. All staff are a mine of information and will always be willing to try out new things – with your motivation and inspiration. Give them free rein within the obvious boundaries of their responsibilities and duties. They'll love you for it.
6 Start a company tradition
What a brilliant way to build motivation. It could be a future quarterly meal, bi-annual trip, or an annual celebration. Ask the team what they would like to do, and where they would like to go. Give them a say in how they'd like to celebrate and they will be proud to wave the flag for you and your business.