Quite a bit of debate exists about whether education is obtained in school or through life experience. Looking at homes and families, the latter may reign supreme. However, universities, and the job market, often argue that a college degree is necessary to succeed in life and obtain a high paying job. Assuming that people can be educated in more than one way, what are some of the reasons why the best jobs go to the best educated people?
Education Blended with Common Sense
To succeed in the work world, people need to have a strong background in their field, but they also must exercise skills in common sense. Knowing the discipline provides the appropriate background information and the technical skills that are needed to succeed. However, the application of that knowledge often comes in the form of common sense. Exercising a blend of these skills allows workers to be confident, determined and strong in their decisions.
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About the Author
From her 25 years in business, Elizabeth Hill aims to pass on knowledge and skills gained in that time through her writing. She loves walks in the countryside, spending time with family and friends, and is ever so ‘slightly’ addicted to coffee.
There isn’t an organization anywhere that doesn’t have a problem with some type of personnel turnover problems. Depending on the study you look at, the impact of turnover ranges from three months of salary for a low level employee who leaves to as high as 400 percent of the annual salary of an upper-level person who leaves.
It’s doesn’t have to be all bad. There’s good turnover and bad turnover.
Firing a non-performer is good turnover. When a top performer leaves to go elsewhere and leaves your organization with a huge void, that’s bad turnover. It can affect the performance of the whole organization.
If you are going to maximize your organization’s performance you have to make a conscious, binding top-down management decision and commitment to develop a no nonsense approach to retention. The following are several must-do actions items for retaining the high-value human assets you’ve worked so hard to acquire:
- Start at the top! Assess your supervisory and management team! Seventy percent of the people say that the worst thing about their job is the boss. Find out what’s wrong and fix it! Identify the prima donnas and micromanaging control freaks, the whiners, complainers, and blamers. Get them basic supervisory training and improve their performance continuously. If you are the boss, take ownership!
- Clean Up the House! Identify the non-performers. Identify the poor managers and supervisors. If they do not respond to training and show significant improvement, remove them from an influential role and replace them with someone that does what is truly desired and required for the role and position they are in.
- Manage Visibly! Get out of the ivory tower. Begin each day by walking around. Stroll around the floor several times a day. Meet the customers, talk with employees, visit with the supervisors, greet the vendors, help the delivery trucks load and unload. Get out of your office. Let people know you are there and that you care. The point here is that you set lead by example. If they like you they are less likely to leave you. Visibility drives retention.
- Care About Your People! If you don’t really care about your people, your business is doomed. Caring is the reason why people stay. Get to know your people. Learn what each person likes and enjoys. Listen to them and learn about their interests, families, and hobbies. Protect your people from harm and from others in your organization. People are loyal to those who care about them and care for them.
- Keep your door open 80% of the time. Let your people know you are accessible to them. Avoid telling people to make an appointment or come back later. Make sure the time you do spend with your people is quality time.
- Focus on Employee Assistance Actively. Sit down with the other managers in your organization and identify the problems that are faced by people in your workforce. Develop innovative ideas and deploy specific new plans to provide employees with more flexibility in their work, support for their common needs, and help for dealing with personal issues that impact their life.
- Treat Everyone with Respect Always! Every leader and manager and supervisor must set the standard that respectful behavior and sincere open appreciation are expected with no exceptions! Investigate and take immediate action for all non-respectful behavior incidents. Have the managers and supervisors bring food to be shared on a regular basis! Break bread with your people regularly instead of forcing people to eat baloney.
- Ask Your People What They Want! Sit down with your people and ask them what they want out of their work. Identify what they want to grow, to develop greater control, autonomy and responsibility for the work they do for you. Help them achieve these goals specifically and incrementally. Meaningful engagement in their own future drives commitment and loyalty.
- Tell Your People What You Want of Them! Be specific and be clear but make sure you explain what you expect of them. Give them the tools, support and the time they need to get the work done. If they do not meet your expectations, bring them in and talk with them and find out what it will take to get them on track.
- Fire the Slugs. Hold your people accountable for their performance. If they don’t solve the problem, then terminate them with respect and dignity. Your good performers will love you.
About the Author
Jeff Kortes is known as the ‘No Nonsense Guy.’ He is the President of Human Asset Management LLC, a human resource consulting firm specializing in executive search and leadership training. He has trained hundreds of first-line supervisors, managers, and executives during his career. His approach to training is no-nonsense, and practical.
Jeff is also a member of the National Speakers Association and a regular speaker on the topics of retention, recruiting and leadership. For more information, visit www.SlugProofYourTeam.com.
Robustly implemented management observation programs offer many benefits to the organization and its managers. At their core, each of these benefits is derived from aggregation and analysis of the performance data gathered during the observations. Enabling required data synthesis necessitates the documentation of observed occurrences and conclusions. Desired behavior reinforcement and performance improvement, not to mention manager and observation program credibility, necessitate the employee be briefed on the observations made and conclusions drawn. As with all formally documented performance appraisal instruments, the documented observation should be signed by both the manager and employee.
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StrategyDriven Podcasts focus on the tools and techniques executives and managers can use to improve their organization’s alignment and accountability to ultimately achieve superior results. These podcasts elaborate on the best practice and warning flag articles found on the StrategyDriven website.
Episode 28 – Responsibility-Driven Leadership examines why now more than ever, people seek leaders who see beyond their own needs, who have vision and integrity, who inspire trust, and who encourage and develop their employees. During this discussion, Emmett Murphy, Chair of Murphy Leadership, shares with us his insights on:
- the difference between responsibility and accountability
- what responsibility-driven leadership is and qualities these leaders possess
- the unique value responsibility-driven leadership provides to help companies survive and thrive in these difficult economic times
- how responsibility-driven leadership can be fostered among the executives, managers, and employees within an organization
In addition to the invaluable insights Emmett shares with us in this podcast are the additional materials and resources found on his website, Murphy Leadership (www.MurphyLeadership.com). Complimenting Emmett’s website are his two books:
- Leadership IQ: A Personal Development Process Based On A Scientific Study of A New Generation of Leaders
- Talent IQ: Identify Your Company’s Top Performers, Improve or Remove Underachievers, Boost Productivity and Profit
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About the Contributor
Emmett Murphy is Chair of Murphy Leadership, a leadership development consultancy providing dynamic programs, products and services that have yielded remarkable results at companies such as IBM, AT&T, Xerox, and McDonald’s. He is the author of the New York Times business bestseller Leadership IQ and the recently released Talent IQ. Dr. Murphy has held faculty, administrative, and consulting positions with the State University of New York, the American Management Association, Booz-Allen Hamilton, and London University, among others. To read Emmett’s full biography, click here.