May 9, 2021

A Road Map for Success

Manage It

| 7/20/2020

Retain valued employees.

Hiring the right employees can be time-consuming. So once you’ve found them, keep them by following these guidelines:

  • Establish clear performance goals. Your employees can’t please you if they’re not sure what you want. Be direct in your instructions and available to answer questions.
  • Coach don’t manage. Empower employees to carry out their responsibilities, but be accessible. Take an interest in them as people, not just employees.
  • Give them tough, not impossible, tasks. An assignment that forces an employee to stretch shows you trust him or her. Be ready with positive reinforcement as they follow through.
  • Make it “easy” for employees to work for you. Listen to their ideas. Encourage them. Let them work from home occasionally or leave early to catch a kid’s baseball game. Be generous with sick days and family leave.
  • Reward them in more ways than one. There’s nothing wrong with a salary increase. But little, more frequent rewards like a handwritten thank you note, dinner on the company or a personal day at the end of a tough assignment can be just as meaningful.
  • Let bad employees go. Not everyone is a good fit. Get rid of bad employees before they chase the good ones away.
  • Learn to delegate responsibility. As a brand new business owner with limited resources, it’s tempting to try and do everything yourself. But if juggling customers, calls, bills, orders and everything else becomes a burden, try turning responsibilities over to someone else. Remember that you are the boss. Keep tabs on your finances and know about any changes to the tax code that may affect your business.

Doing Business in the “Gig” Economy

Not every prospective employee you are likely to encounter these days is in the market for a full-time career. Many of them, either by preference or necessity, are looking for “gigs” — short-term assignments as opposed to full-time jobs — and, as a result, a whole new economic sector has emerged. The gig economy, as this relatively new and growing business model is called, operates as a free market system characterized by the prevalence of short-term contracts and freelance work as opposed to permanent jobs. And it’s having an impact on Florida’s workforce.

CareerSource Florida spent six months researching this growing phenomenon and its implications for both workers and industry. The resulting publication, The Gig Economy and Florida’s Workforce System, is available at


Pay attention to the paperwork as you hire.

First day on the job, make sure every new employee completes three important forms:

  • I-9 (Employment Eligibility Verification)
  • W-4 (Employee’s Withholding Allowance Certificate)
  • Florida New Hire Reporting Form (due within 20 days of hire; available at

Note: A bill passed by the Florida legislature in 2020, requires businesses use federal form I-9 (also known as E-Verify) to check the immigration status of their new hires OR keep a three-year record of the documents used by applicants when filling out their I-9 forms


3 Daughters Brewing, St. Petersburg
A crisis like COVID-19 calls on business owners to be creative. So when bars were forced to close their doors and beer drinkers began staying at home, 3 Daughters Brewing found a creative way to re-purpose its brewing equipment and materials for the greater good. Instead of brewing beer, 3 Daughters began producing hand sanitizer. And they weren’t alone. Elsewhere in St. Petersburg, Kozuba & Sons Distillery also halted its production of spirits and shifted all available resources to the manufacture of hand sanitizer from, according to the distillery’s Facebook post, “the highest grade spirit that otherwise would have been used to make vodka.” Lesson to be learned: When life gives you lemons, you really can make lemonade. Or hand sanitizer.

Tags: Florida Small Business, A Road Map for Success

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