Tom Merriott
Tom Merriott

You have certainly earned your big fancy office but what does it say to your team?

I travel to a tremendous amount of small businesses that cover a lot of trades and I always ask for a tour. I want to see everything so I get a view of the workspace but, more importantly, a glimpse into the owner’s mind regarding different departments.

Most offices are extremely similar all the way down to the owner’s office. It is usually the best space in the entire building: The best furnishings, the most personalized and sometimes the largest individual workspace. It’s everything that a successful small business owner has worked so hard to achieve and completely deserves. My question is what kind of message does it send to the rest of your team?

If you have one of the best personal workspaces I want you to walk around the rest of your company with a different set of eyes. Really look at the working conditions of the people you have hired to help you succeed and grow. Do they have comfortable chairs to sit in for eight plus hours a day? Do they have all of the necessary equipment required to do their jobs to the best of their ability? How is the lighting and noise level? I’m not throwing stones here because my management house was built of pure glass. I always had the best computer in my shop; the best chair and the biggest desk. But I didn’t NEED any of it.

Take a walk through your current office. How does it make you feel? What kind of equipment do your people use? Is it the best set of tools for them to perform the job you hired them to do? And finally, could you work there, all day, day after day, for an extended period of time? If the answer is no, then you have some work to do.