The motivator

To keep his 300 employees motivated, Chris Dalton communicates to them both the progress and achievements of Acquity Group LLC.

However, that gets harder as the company continues to grow.

“You want to stay as active in communicating the health of company and the good things and the bad things,” says the co-founder, president and CEO of the digital communications company, which posted 2007 revenue of $65 million. “The more you do, people rally toward playing an active role in executing on the day-to-day tactics that are necessary to complete the vision.”

Smart Business spoke with Dalton about how to use communication to keep your employees engaged.

Q. How do you create a culture where people will be involved and motivated?

I really believe that people get motivated by passion. As a good leader, you have to be passionate about the business and passionate about your vision. I think those who believe in it will rally toward that, and through that energy and through that excitement and through that vision, I think you can get people motivated.

Now, it has to be something you sustain. So, you have to stay diligent on communication, you have to stay diligent on people being informed and involved in the progress.

I can remember early on in our success, we were crowded in a very small 1,200-square-foot office with quite a few people.

So, it was very easy to know when someone was getting a win or know when someone was accomplishing something because you were within arm’s reach. As you continue to grow, you have to stay diligent about communicating the progress that you’re making within the year and within your multiyear plan.

But you have to do that in a genuine sense. You have to do that with a sense of real conviction and real interest to make it successful.