PD Strategies Blog
Performance and Development Strategies Blog is the informational place to get timely and purposeful articles on the issues that concern you most.
Blog posts tagged in Employee Engagement
You may believe that you have a powerful customer value proposition but if your employees are not on board it will never be fulfilled. If they are not on board then, perhaps, you are not leading them. When I consult with business owners in Westchester County New York often I hear comments about getting the staff to do the right things. Sometimes an owner is willing to place all the blame on the staff being lazy, unmotivated, or the like. Fortunately, most will ask how they can improve their ability to get the team behind them.
You can change things by being laser focused on the goals and leading by example. Your laser focus empowers your employees who in turn create loyal customers by their actions.
Being Laser Focused - You may be the owner but that does not mean you are seen as the leader. As owner you can influence...
Your most important task in your business is to attract and retain customers. Second most important task is to attract and retain great employees.
You need a great product or service and a great value proposition to have loyal customers. The same is true for your employees. You must have a great employee value proposition. You are never going to learn the truth about your value proposition if you don’t ask.
There are some organizations that never ask their customers or staff how the company is doing. Fear of hearing bad news will not make the bad news go away. However, it appears that many companies are just not comfortable asking the ultimate question, “How are we doing?”
The reason that we know that companies are not interested in knowing how they are doing can be found in a Gallup survey. According to Gallup around 30% of employees are engaged at...
The employees of your business are important to your success. And today more than ever their connection with their job and your business is directly related to your success.
In past times, leaders would give directions and expect them to be followed. Leadership today requires collaboration. Instead of saying what you want done you will say, “here is what we can accomplish together to achieve our goals.”
Unfortunately, I am sometimes contacted by business owners that can’t understand why there are so many bad employees and they want me to fix them.
I was asked by a family business what I felt needed to be done to “make their people work.” They did not ask me what they could do differently.
For starters, family members disagreed on the operation of the business. Because of this, some key employees chose to align with one family member over the other. The managers in...
Do you see your Westchester County NY business the way that others do? You have been working in your business for a long time. Many times, when you see something every day you stop noticing. Does that make sense? For example, when you started your business you were focused on how you were going to get customers and what resources you would need to deliver the products and services to those customers. That might have been 2 years ago, 5 years ago or even 10 or more years ago. But you say, “I’m ok now because I have my routine set and it works without me thinking about it.”
Here are two questions to ask yourself. Has a new team member joined and pointed out things you didn’t see? Have you had any suggestions or complaints by customers? Sometimes a person with a fresh set of eyes is needed to point...
Westchester employers are asking how they can get productive employees who will stay. You can’t just hire them. You then need to develop your employees so that they can produce better results. Your employees really want opportunities to grow and develop. There is so much out there written about performance reviews. Many of these writings focus on procedure. Here is a more practical bottom line approach but one that uses solid human relations skills.
Performance management includes performance development. It is not merely enough to tell an employee here is your job description and see me if you have any questions.
Establish expectations from the start.
Help orient your new employee by helping him or her to understand the big picture for your organization. Share the organization’s vision, values, and mission along with the organizational goals. You will have more success if you are as transparent as possible. In order to...
Any smart business owner knows that a business must have adequate controls. Sometimes, however, being in control is preventing your business from growing. There is a delicate balance between control and empowerment.
Here is a problem that comes up all too often. A business owner or agency owner spends most of his or her time working IN the business and virtually no time working ON the business.
Why is this problematic? When you start your business, you need to do everything, or it does not get done. Sometimes you have time management issues, but you must work through them. Your business grows, and you simply can't get it all done. Time to hire someone.
Now you are at the pinnacle of a growing business. At this point you are now not only the owner but also a manager and the leader.
When you hire a new employee is it very important...
Have you noticed that it is getting harder find good people and that when you do they do not stay long? What value do they find in working for you? That is known as your Employee Value Proposition. An Employee Value Proposition explains why a highly qualified employee would want to work for your company and why that highly qualified person would want to stay.
This Employee Value Proposition would be tied to your strategic plan and include your vision, your values, and, your mission. The values should include such things as social responsibility, ethical conduct, and reputation.
Strong employee engagement produces successful business outcomes including a loyal customer base. And this leads to increasing sales and profits. The reverse is also true. Employees who are not engaged have no passion for their work, are frequently absent, make mistakes, and cost the organization its customers. Understanding what engages employees involves connecting...
If you want your employees to take initiative they must have skin in the game. You can do that by letting them take ownership and pride in their work and their decisions.
Rather than giving them very detailed instruction tell them what needs to be done and make them accountable for the results. This is the best way to get things done.
If you are frustrated with the results of your team, here are two questions that you need to ask yourself. First, have you provided them with the tools to succeed? Second, have you clearly communicated the objectives and desired results? You may have you given plenty of detailed directions without explaining reasons and objectives.
The first thing you need to do is let go and empower your team. Instead of giving assignments with specific instructions try something different. Here are two different approaches to giving an employee an assignment....
We have heard much about sexual harassment in the workplace lately. While this is a practice that is illegal is also destroys a well aligned diverse workplace. Diverse teams led by good leaders are highly productive teams. Creating a dynamic workforce involves valuing and respecting every individual.
Diversity and Inclusion is really all about engaging employees and customers for more success. It involves valuing all cultures, all races, genders. And it also involves respecting all ideas—that is—diversity of thought. Why do you and your company want to embrace diversity? Most would answer that they would do it because it is right. But there is an ROI. You will get more business and more customers. Gaining loyal customers and engaged employees is built on trust.
Here is how diversity helped one company. The company has restaurants in a metropolitan area located in suburbs as well as downtown cities. The company found that...
Having your organization aligned is just as important as having the wheels on your car aligned. In both cases mis alignment creates disastrous results. The reason for non-alignment in the business is a lack of clear vision and without a clear vision everyone is on a different page. While that is personally frustrating it can cost your company good employees and customers.
If you want to change that then be ready to change three areas involving your business. Here they are:
Let’s start with the focused leader. You may be the owner, the manager, or CEO but that does not mean you are the leader. You appoint yourself CEO, but your team will follow you if you are the leader. As managers we can influence the process through which people recognize our leadership by creating an environment where people will join “the team” because they see the purpose of what they...
Do you have a problem retaining your high performing employees? Today’s workforce expects to do meaningful work and be associated with an organization that shares their values. This is the employee value proposition which means, “Why would a high potential employee want to work at your company?”
Many companies do not understand why their turnover is so high. Some think that it is all about money and benefits. But unless you pay below standard it is not about money. Sure, an employee will tell you that he or she left for a better opportunity. You might, therefore, assume that it had to do with money but don’t be fooled. There is much more going on than just money.
You cannot treat employees as commodities assuming they will come to work just because they are getting paid. Some vendors of perks may even tell you that if you offer special perks then...
Do you want to learn the truth? There are some organizations that never ask their staff how the company is doing. But fear of hearing bad news will not make the bad news go away. Ignorance is not bliss although it appears to that many companies are just not comfortable asking the ultimate question, “How are we doing?”
It is easier for companies with retention problems, for example, to focus on compensation issues. But, according to Gallup around 30% of employees are engaged at work. That means that 70% are not engaged in their jobs at your company.
Recently Gallup released a new survey on employee engagement. When I read the commentary, I could see that engagement is not static information but depends on company, employees, and time. There is a take away and that is that we can’t make a universal supposition of what engages people. Instead, we need to...
Developing a high performing team starts with communicating clear vision and values and seeing that each member shares the values and is one the same page. Once aligned a leader inspires those on the team to be the very best they can be. You start, of course, by getting the right people in the right jobs.
Help your team use their strengths to push their performance to new levels. Unfortunately, many of us spend time trying to correct weaknesses. This is best illustrated with a story a parent can understand:
A child comes home from school with his or her report card and it shows, for example, an A in math, B’s in history and science, and a C in English. What is the parent’s response? In most cases the parent talks to the child about raising the grade in English. But what if the child might have a real talent...
Small business is poised to generate many new jobs in 2018. We need small business to grow our economy and will need local small business. I have had the pleasure over seeing many small businesses grow in the last years and expect more in Westchester County New York in 2018.
While it is true that today’s business environment can seem somewhat volatile there have also been many more opportunities with the growth in the economy.
While I don’t want to oversimplify I believe that small business owners can leverage success by following the suggestions in the three following steps.
Step 1 – Think Strategically then follow through.
When you think strategically you work ON your business rather than IN your business. You are future focused. You decide where you want to take your business now and in the future whether it is in 5 years, 10 years, 15 years or...
HDWe can’t seem to find anyone who wants to work. How many times have you heard that or maybe said that yourself? Or you may have heard, “Unless I tell them what to do nothing gets done. I can’t trust them to do it themselves.” When I recently heard this I asked the owner to give me an example. “Well,” he said, “I have given them detailed directions of exactly what I want done and they don’t do it the way I told them.” “Wait a minute,” I said, “Didn’t you just say that you wanted them to take ownership?”
If you want employees to take ownership you must empower them to make decisions as to the best way to get things done.
If this is a source of frustration to you, here are two questions that you need to ask yourself. First of all, have you provided her with...
Now that you have carefully selected the correct fit for your company you will want them to stay. You do that by creating an Employee Value Proposition. Get this wrong and you will continue to tread water always trying to catch up. Get this right and you have one very important component for taking your business to the next level. a team of people, or are charged with human resources in your organization you know how important it is to retain your best people. So why do so many employee leave, or worse, why do they stay and become a drag on the organization?
Here is a sobering fact. Employees do not leave companies, they leave supervisors. Many supervisors believe that if only the pay and fringe benefits were better their best employees would stay. I would not deny the compensation is important. However, people who are truly engaged with their...
The employees of your business are important to your success. It is important to have the right person in the right job. Just as important, you must give your employees the support that they need to do the best work.
Unfortunately, I am sometimes contacted by business owners that can’t understand why there are so many bad employees and they want me to fix them. Really? It doesn’t work that way.
Here is an example. I have changed some things so as not identify anyone. I was asked by a family business what I felt needed to be done to “make their people work.” They did not ask me what they could do differently.
For starters, family members disagreed on the operation of the business. Because of this, some key employees chose to align with one family member over the other. The managers in the business complained about lack of leadership...
Exercising strong control rarely leads to better performance. In fact, being a control freak insures that nothing can get done without your involvement. If you want to have a growing business too much control is not the way to achieve it.
Many of my business owners in Westchester County New York have learned the importance of delegation to business growth. Once you decide to add just one new employee your main job is not control but getting others to do what needs to be done. If you don’t let go, you will be seen as a micro manager. This will actually de motivate your team and guarantee that you will do everything yourself.
Why is this problematic? Let me ask another question. Why did you hire another person to begin with? The answer is that you wanted to be able to grow your business. But if you don’t get out of...
Are you running as fast as you can but finding that no one is following you? Worse than that, are they running the other way? C, that you empower your engaged employees, that they will in turn create loyal customers leading to growth and success.
Focused Leader - You may be the owner, the manager, or CEO but that does not mean you are seen as the leader. You appoint yourself CEO but your team will follow you if you are the leader. As leader you will create vision, model behavior and inspire results. With your inspiration people recognize your leadership. You will be creating an environment where people will join your team. They see the purpose of what they are supposed to do and understand the vision as well as the values of the organization for which they work. Today’s fast-moving business environment demands that the effective leader be both,...
If you are an employer in Westchester County New York, you know that it is difficult to find qualified employees. Once you find them you want them to be productive. And if they become performers you want them to stay.
You need a Value Proposition to attract customers to your business, right? Well guess what, you need an Employee Value Proposition to attract and retain employees. Your employees really want opportunities to grow and develop. They want to do the best they can do and be the best they can be. It is important for you to engage that.
Create a platform for Employee Development and Results.
We start with expectations but before we measure expectations we need to set expectations. It is not merely enough to tell an employee here is your job description and see me if you have any questions.
Establish expectations from the start.
Help orient your...