Fifty years ago, you’d buy products from one of two sources.
One was the massive, faceless corporations that had no personal relationship with their customers. They made no effort to get to know who was buying their goods and they weren’t excited about the idea of sitting down to learn about someone.
The other option was local, main street business run by individuals or families. These people were known by everyone in town and had an existing relationship with all of their customers (and their customer’s relatives).
The world has changed. Nowadays, you’re more likely to buy something online than in-person. While the faceless corporations are still there, the small, independent businesses have had to change. They still rely on the familiarity that comes with knowing someone, but they don’t have the opportunity to introduce themselves or their teams.
That is where team member profiles come in handy. Why do they matter? Well, there are four key reasons.
Reason #1: Your Team Changes
Companies are made up of the people who work at them when they decide to come together and create something that none of them would be capable of doing individually.
While the company may have the same name and address for decades — or in some cases, hundreds of years — the people will inevitably change. For some companies, you may have new people joining and old people leaving on a weekly basis. It’s a frequent, fluctuating organism once it reaches a certain size.
That’s why you want to make sure your team profile page is built correctly from the start. That means you have a team page that is flexible and easy to edit, without having to run through an entire engineering checklist to change someone’s title, edit a photo, add a new person, or remove someone who recently left the company.
Ideally, what you’d be looking for is a solution that lets you go to a part of your WordPress site, drag-and-drop the profile of the person, edit their information, and publish the changes within seconds. Anything short of that isn’t worth your time and especially not your money.
Reason #2: Business Is Based On Person-to-Person Relationships
Business is built on personal relationships, but personal relationships can be next to impossible to form over the internet. There is no opportunity to shake someone’s hand or to sit down with them and find out about their life.
That’s where team pages step in. When done correctly they build a sense of camaraderie that is impossible with a face and a name. Now, this doesn’t mean team pages replace the need for communication and introducing yourself, but it does replicate that moment of being greeted by a store owner when you walk through the door and a bell rings.
To make sure you have a page that sets the groundwork for good relationships, include details about who you are, your interests, and most importantly: put a picture next to your name. Someone named John Smith doesn’t mean anything to anyone, but when you put a face next to the name it becomes a person.
Reason #3: It Helps with Recruiting
Business owners everywhere know that one of the most difficult things to do well is attract great, talented employees. They are hard to find and even harder to convince to join a company.
There’s an endless list of things you can do to attract great people — recruiting events, great benefits, referral bonuses, etc. — but one of the underlying drivers of all of these programs is the reality that people want to work with people that they can imagine spending an entire day with enjoyably. With our jobs being one of the places where we spend most of our time, this reasoning makes sense.
However, you don’t need to spend tens of thousands of dollars building out a recruiting team to start attracting great people. Instead, let your current employees speak for the company. Take your team profile page and put their stories and interests on there. One thing in particular to include is what they think about the company and an explanation of why they joined. These small stories won’t resonate with everyone, but for some people the stories will get them so excited that they’ll immediately send in an application. And if they’re anything like your current team, they’ll be worth interviewing.
Reason #4: New Employees Feel Valued Immediately
Getting beyond recruiting, team pages play a special role in the minds of new employees. When you first join a company you’re faced with a group of people that you hardly know, an environment you’re unfamiliar with, inside jokes that haven’t yet been explained, and on top of all that, you need to learn how to do a new job.
One nice perk throughout all of that, however, is that you can immediately feel welcome when your face is put right next to everyone else’s. It will be on the same level, with the same stories, the same format, and the same prominence. It’s a very small gesture, but it can be something that brings a team together and helps them celebrate that they’re all working together towards the same goal.
Some Final Thoughts
Building an amazing team page isn’t the hardest project you’ll work on this year, but if you do it right it will be one of the most impactful things you do. You won’t win awards (that we know of), but you will be able to recruit great people, build a closer relationship with your customer, help your employees feel valued, and flexibly respond to changes in your team structure within a few minutes.