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Motivation at Work

By: Zein E. Obagi, MD
Posted: August 29, 2011, from the September 2011 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.

Today, more than ever, skin care is a business, and success is dependent on the effectiveness of the facility’s team as a whole. That’s why it is so important to create a work environment that attracts good employees, rewards good behavior, inspires loyalty and retention, and makes your skin care center or medical spa one of the best places to work. It’s not coincidental that the top workplaces are often the best places to get skin care treatments.

Of course, cash is always a good motivator. But a well-paid employee doesn’t necessarily equal a happy employee. In fact, sometimes, if people are well-paid, they will continue to work for you, even if they’re not happy ... and who needs that? Following are some motivational skills and habits that can help improve your business and motivate your team members.

1. Have an open-door policy. Secrets and closed-door meetings make people feel insecure. Instead of these, schedule regular staff meetings so that all employees stay informed. Develop an agenda so that the meeting stays on course, and serve refreshments. Encourage team members to make a contribution to the meeting so that they feel engaged. Solicit their ideas or questions, and let them know that you’re always available if they have a question or problem.

2. Don’t tolerate bad behavior. Gossip, negativity and disagreements are all counterproductive. At Google, they call this “Don’t Be Evil.” If someone on your staff is causing cultural problems, that behavior needs to be modified before it does irreversible damage to your team members, clients and business. Your spa director should let employees know that unacceptable behavior cannot be tolerated. When you set and enforce rules of good conduct, you’re not only standing up for your other employees, you’re standing up for your business and your integrity.

3. Recognize your employee’s contributions. Try to do this on a daily basis, when you walk in every morning and before you leave at night. In the morning, offer a brief greeting and compliment. In the evening, try to say “Thanks for helping me with Mrs. Jones today. You did a great job.” Make it personal and try to be specific, or it can lose its meaning. Sometimes try to share it one-on-one, and sometimes say it so that others can hear it. Appreciation goes a long way.