How to Step Up & Cultivate a Strong Team

In the world of family entertainment centers (or FECs for short), saying day-to-day operations move fast is an understatement. There is a constant stream of children’s birthday parties, a whole building’s worth of attractions to clean or maintain and unfortunately employees that come and go all too often due to obligations taking priority after summer ends. It can be quite difficult to motivate your part-time workers especially when you know you may only have them for a short period but fear not, it is possible! You too can combat high turnover rates with open communication, easy to understand directions and uniform motivation. Ready to know more? Let’s dig in.

Connect with your crew

Each individual under your leadership has to be on the same page and feel taken care of in some capacity. They all need to know that you’re there for them if something goes awry during business hours or if they need support while dealing with tough personal issues. “Empathy goes a long way. If you listen to your employees with compassion it reduces their tension” [1]. Offering a helping hand if you see them struggling with a task or sparing a few moments to hear them out will greatly help in the long run.

Your employees should be able to confide in you as well as know when they’re doing a great job. “Praise them” and while it may not seem like much at times, let them know you “appreciate those simple mundane tasks” [1]. Grand accomplishments are more likely to be recognized but it’s the little victories that keep daily operations running smoothly so they too deserve praise. Employees will certainly take note of your supportive behavior and in turn, feel more confident about their overall job performance.

Set clear guidelines

Part of improving the communication you have with your employees includes conveying to them clear, direct instructions so that they understand what needs to be accomplished when and why. At the beginning of the day, before the doors open, lay out a rough plan of tasks that need to be completed and try to list them in order of most important to least important (or those that can wait until later).

If employees set out with the mindset that each thing you told them was equally important, they will just end up confused and without direction. More pressing tasks may even be left incomplete. Communicating to them that “every task we ask them to do is important” actually “overwhelms your employees” as they figure out what needs to be done [1]. Be clear and take time to carefully explain!

Motivate consistently

No matter who they are or how long they’ve been a part of your team, everyone deserves the same level of leadership and motivation. Their experience or age should not affect how they are motivated during their shift. “The most important thing to remember is employees add value to their work and “their differences, experiences, beliefs, values, assumptions, and point of view can be used to create a richer and dynamic work environment” [1].

Whether it’s the start of your busy season or just an exceptionally packed day, pump up every member of your team and assign them to tasks where they can strengthen their current skills or perhaps pick up a few new ones.

Being a great leader may take practice and dedication but your employees will thank you for your efforts!

[1] How not to lose your best employees? FEC Management tips that work. (2017, May 02). Retrieved from