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Ram Charan

McGraw Hill, 2009

Purchase here (http://www.amazon.ca/Leadership-Era-Economic-Uncertainty-Managing/dp/0071626166)

 

Ram Charan’s hard punching guide to survival focuses on one word and that is “cash, cash and cash”. He rightly points out that this global economic crisis is the biggest management challenge in decades and that most people don’t know how to deal with it.

Each chapter suggests practical guidance and includes such tips as pursuing every source of cash possible, being prepared to make the tough decisions and to aggressively practice the new mantra of “head in-hands on”. The book is well written, examples are very current and the advice very practical. Charan’s book is not just for the CEO, but is a must read for managers at all levels of the organization.

 

By: Barbara Bowes

 

What do you do when your organizational career ladder is no longer pointed upward? What can you do when you have downsized, right-sized and restructured to such an extent employees are confused about possible opportunities? What can you do when employees tend to flee from your organization first and ask questions later?

Today, organizational and human-resource leaders need to take on a new view of career management. They need to develop a partnership with their employees, working jointly toward building skills that can benefit the organization as well as the employee in the long term, no matter whether the employee remains with the organization.

Leaders need to know that employee training is an investment rather than a flight risk.

Finally, a new reinvigorated view of career management will give leaders an opportunity to take a holistic view of all their organizational roles, the skills required within the larger workflow and to identify unexpected career opportunities.

At the same time, a holistic approach to career management gives leaders an opportunity to identify the multitude of skills that exist among their employees.

And believe me, leaders are often surprised at the level of employee talent the organization was not aware of and therefore was not being fully utilized.

The following ideas will assist you to take a career management point of view within your organization.

 

  • Conduct a job-analysis process: While job descriptions have long been a standard HR tool, most do not describe the skills and talents required for each job. Take time now to review the knowledge, skills, abilities and competencies required for each job structure in your organization. Use this data to determine both current gaps, future risks in the various skill areas and opportunities for development.
  • Develop a master chart of job families: List the job skills in chart form, look for common skills and competencies that could be transferred to various jobs within your organization and highlight them. Group similar skills into job families and determine what additional skills would enable more employees to cross-train in other jobs within the families. Create a total organizational framework that outlines the functions, the job families and the different levels in each.
  • Publish a competency dictionary: Each job has a set of core competencies as well as technical competencies at different levels of expertise. Create a competency dictionary and make it public. This helps employees to see the progression of skills and where they can be applied. This can also provide an awareness of what training might be required to progress toward a particular goal.
  • Map out career opportunities: Develop a strategic map of opportunities and demonstrate how one job can lead to another. This is helpful for employees as they try to envision a career path. Colour-code skill similarities so employees can clearly see opportunities that might exist upward, downward and sideways.
  • Conduct an employee-skills assessment: Organizations rarely conduct a complete survey of all the skills and talent found within the employee complement. Now is the time. At the very simple level, employees could complete a skills-inventory checklist or one could be acquired through interviews or a review of performance appraisal forms. Be sure to inquire about skills used outside work in hobbies or community work. These skills can often lead to new careers.
  • Develop a career-management philosophy: Work with all of your managers to ensure they understand and adopt the philosophy that career management is an investment in employees. Help to overcome the old fear philosophy of “train them and they will leave.” Focus on developing a partnership between employee and employer and create ideas on how this can be applied in your organization.
  • Provide career-management training for employees: Develop a training program that helps employees understand personal success isn’t always an upward progression. Help them to gain a sense of personal control by becoming more aware of workplace trends and the need for continuous learning. Help employees identify their passion, talents and motivators and discover how best to align their personal traits and career goals with the vision and objectives of the organization.
  • Offer career resources: While not all organizations are of the size to offer a career resource centre, leaders can provide resource lists, a library of books and/or refer employees to private coaching with a career consultant. This is especially effective for individuals who are struggling to identify skills and motivators because most people take themselves for granted.
  • Apply innovative strategies: No matter how small, an organization can offer some strategies to help their employees explore careers. Assign a personal career mentor, create brief job-shadowing opportunities by pairing employees with colleagues or managers for various periods of time so employees can get a feel for other jobs they may be interested in. Finally, the simple tactic of supporting time for informational interviews works well.
  • Incorporate careers into performance management: It’s well-known individual employees rarely set aside time for their own career development, so it is important both for individuals as well as for organizational planning to include this in the annual performance review.

Work with the employee to determine training and career goals and set a plan in place. Keep in mind your organizational needs.

Barbara J. Bowes, FCHRP, CMC is president of Legacy Bowes Group. She is also host of the weekly Bowes Knows radio show and is the author of Resume Rescue and Taming the Workplace Tigers. She can be reached at barb@legacybowes.com. Learn more at www.barbarabowes.com.

 

The mass exodus of baby boomers has been on the minds of business leaders for quite some time. While the exodus hasn’t happened as quickly as first thought, the transition is indeed beginning to make its mark. The situation as it’s now developing will create a significant dilemma for all types of corporations and organizations in general.

 

The dilemma is twofold: first, it is well known that the incoming new generation of leaders (typically aged 35-49) does not have the skills or experience of more senior leaders. While this to be expected, recent research conducted by i4cp, a Florida based research firm, identified these younger generation leaders were lacking skills in five critical leadership areas. This included critical thinking, the ability to create a vision and engage others, the ability to collaborate with other areas of a business and manage change, overall leadership and understanding how the different business sectors needed to work together.

Secondly, my own professional experience suggests younger leaders have higher expectations with respect to salary and compensation. They are also more demanding with respect to perks and other benefits such as vacation, vehicles, flexibility and executive education. As well, many young people are impatient, relying too much on their graduate education instead of being willing to engage in a longer apprenticeship type of career model. In other words, they want to leapfrog up the career ladder and, if opportunities are not found in their current employment, they won’t think twice about moving to another firm.

 

Where does this situation leave our current business leaders, especially since it’s well known that a large percentage have no succession planning strategies in place? What solutions would help to rectify this situation? I believe that working with an external expert and undertaking the following strategies would provide significant benefit to your organization.

 

1. Demographic survey – conduct a survey of all your employees with respect to their age demographics as well as the skills required for each job.

 

2. Map your situation – develop a risk management chart for each and every job in your organization and identify at least two individuals who could move into each job along with their potential timeframe. Confirm gaps and risks.

3. Identify training needs – prioritize those jobs which are crucial to the ongoing success of your organization, identify the competencies and training required for a successor and create a career development plan.

 

4. Identify potential internal talent – while good job performance may be evident, undertake a series of psychometric assessments to identify individuals who have the skills in the five critical areas mentioned above. Being a strategic and visionary thinker is a unique skill and, if you don’t have this skill within your organization, you will have to bring in an external candidate.

 

5. Map your candidate pool – once you have completed your assessments, create a map of your talent pool. This will enable you to determine short and long-term gaps and create a development plan for each individual. Invest in your people.

 

6. Link competencies to a strategic business plan – after the competencies have been developed for each job role, compare and contrast them to each of the strategic business goals. Determine which of the competencies will be the drivers to move you forward and then assess your strengths and weaknesses for each.

 

7. Confirm organizational values – while the younger generation might want higher compensation, most in my experience seek better life/work balance than their parents. Take time to examine your organizational values and workplace philosophy. Determine what would attract new employees, what would set you aside from your competitors and utilize these elements in your recruitment strategies.

 

8. Develop a recruitment strategy – finding the right candidate with the right skills at the right time and getting the cultural fit just right is not as easy as it looks. Most high caliber candidates are happy in their current work and are not on the job hunt. They need to be tapped on the shoulder and invited to look at your opportunity. Many times this must be done on a highly confidential basis.

 

As a seasoned executive search professional, I am now seeing many organizations moving into panic mode as their employees begin sharing their retirement plans, sometimes three at a time.

 

Effective planning and a view to the future will prevent this type of organizational risk.

Hire right the first time with a successful search process

There are a couple of old familiar sayings that summarize some of our communication, recruitment and selection challenges in the workplace. The first is, “you hear what you want to hear” and secondly we often realize that people have a “tendency to oversell their abilities.” All my years of experience allow me to corroborate these statements, as I have seen both of these communication translations create problems in the workplace following a candidate search.

 

Managers are especially at fault when they attempt to describe their workplaces. One of the first things I do as a search professional is to assist clients in reviewing and assessing their …

 

Read More …


Engaging challenge: Ensuring employees have positive approach a key job

By: Barbara Bowes

 

While the last few years have found baby-boomer retirement issues holding top priority, the latest human resource surveys are showing that employee engagement is now taking over the primary lead. In fact, one survey reports that 94 per cent of survey participants indicated that employee engagement was the most important workforce challenge they were currently facing.

Yet, what is employee engagement and why are HR managers so concerned? Employee engagement refers to whether or not employees have a positive or negative approach to their work and to whether or not employees are willing and/or not willing to perform at their best in ways that further benefit their employer.

 

Read More …


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Exceptional executive search services for almost 30 years

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This is precisely why Verriez has been the ‘go-to’ retained executive search company for Ontario, Canada and international businesses for almost 30 years. Every executive position or senior level role you need to fill has unique requirements for skills, experience, and leadership qualities. So at Verriez, we take a custom-made approach to achieve a successful fit of exceptional candidate to exciting executive role.

 

Full information is available here…

 

By: Barbara Bowes

While the last few years have found baby-boomer retirement issues holding top priority, the latest human resource surveys are showing that employee engagement is now taking over the primary lead. In fact, one survey reports that 94 per cent of survey participants indicated that employee engagement was the most important workforce challenge they were currently facing.

Yet, what is employee engagement and why are HR managers so concerned? Employee engagement refers to whether or not employees have a positive or negative approach to their work and to whether or not employees are willing and/or not willing to perform at their best in ways that further benefit their employer.

The reason HR managers are concerned about employee engagement is that engaged employees are known to make a strong impact on business success from a profitability point of view and also contribute to a positive work culture.

At the same time, human resource professionals know that a focus on employee engagement has a spillover effect in that other human resource functions such as performance management, employee recognition and employee retention seem to improve. As well, those organizations that track employee engagement scores are also discovering that their managers are much more effective in developing, providing feedback, recognizing and rewarding their employees.

This is good news from two points of view. First, it confirms that leadership styles have transitioned from an autocratic authoritarian style to one of collaboration, coaching and mentoring of employees. Secondly, it is finally giving credence to the fact that employee reward and recognition programs are not simply that annual warm and fuzzy “must have” event, but do indeed have real return on investment for a business.

If you really think about it, a fully engaged workforce that outperforms other work groups will essentially become your competitive advantage. And, if employee reward and recognition programs have proven to be a big part of successful employee engagement, then it makes sense to strategically implement a reward and recognition program. This program will become a set of guiding principles that will ensure all forms of your rewards and recognition are in alignment with your business strategy. The following steps to implementation will ensure an effective contribution to your employee engagement.

1. Secure leadership commitment – a reward and recognition program must be supported not only by a CEO/president, but also by all the executives and managers in the company. Appoint a program champion to oversee the design, development and implementation.

2. Link rewards to business strategy – your program must be connected to both the needs and expectations of your workforce, as well as to the organizational goals and objectives. Incorporate your company values and goals into the program so that your messages are consistent and employees understand what behaviours are important.

3. Make the program fair and inclusive – a reward and recognition program must be able to impact and motivate all of your employees, not just a set of top performers. This now includes consideration for the interests and needs of the various generations of workers in your organization. Establish your selection criteria so that “justice for all” is perceived by your employees, which in turn will help to develop trust in your program.

4. Design for meaning – consider conducting an employee survey to identify personal interests and suggestions for what would be appreciated in a reward or recognition program. Employees value meaningful rewards that they can get excited about and that motivates them to excel. Work with your employees to help create a personal mission that links with the corporate mission. Form an employee committee to assist management in designing the program. Value all suggestions.

5. Design for choice – with so many different interests and needs in today’s workforce, the best strategy is to allow for choice in the selection of a reward gift. Rewards typically range from an item with the company logo to making a charitable donation in the name of your employees. This will enable you to meet the needs of an intergenerational workforce and one with significant cultural diversity.

6. Simplify the nomination process – ensure the nomination process is not too complicated or time intensive so that people will be encouraged rather than discouraged from participating. Keep your forms simple, and be sure to be consistent and make the overall selection process transparent.

7. Link reward with action – it’s well known that when recognition quickly follows action, you’ll get a lot more “bang for the buck” in terms of employee motivation. Timeliness helps the employee to know why he or she is being acknowledged and why their contribution or behaviour was valuable. As well, your timely recognition will be better remembered and the employee behaviour will be reinforced.

8. Train your managers – managers are typically the people handling the reward and recognition program as well as leading employees toward greater engagement. Train your managers to understand the goals and objectives of your program as well as how to effectively implement the program on an ongoing basis.

9. Promote your program – help employees understand the “what, where, why and how” of your rewards and recognition program. Use multiple communication strategies and media. Be sure that employees understand the “what’s in it for me.” Plan to promote employee success and recognition through your company newsletter or email/twitter messages. Make them a star.

10. Make it a celebration – in addition to making daily acknowledgements, annual performance reviews or sporadic special events, celebrate employee achievements by holding an annual event. Incorporate all kinds of rewards and recognition ranging from retirement to special achievements. Make it a celebration.

11. Measure your results – measuring success through tracking employee satisfaction and employee engagement against your program objectives will give you an indication of success. When management is aware of this annual measurement, you’ll see an increase in accountability and leadership behaviours as well as increase in the application of other human resource functions.

Meaningful employee reward and recognition programs are a powerful tool for engaging your employees and increasing retention. However, a program must be well thought out, fair, transparent and based on corporate goals and objectives that are linked to the recognition and rewards that your employees value.

Source: Employee Recognition Survey, Winter 2012 Report, SHRM/Globoforce; Creating an Effective Reward and Recognition Program, Leadership council, March 2006

Barbara J. Bowes, FCHRP, CMC is president of Legacy Bowes Group. She is also host of the weekly Bowes Knows radio show and is the author of Resume Rescue and Taming the Workplace Tigers. She can be reached at barb@legacybowes.com. Learn more at www.barbarabowes.com.

There are a couple of old familiar sayings that summarize some of our communication, recruitment and selection challenges in the workplace. The first is, “you hear what you want to hear” and secondly we often realize that people have a “tendency to oversell their abilities.” All my years of experience allow me to corroborate these statements, as I have seen both of these communication translations create problems in the workplace following a candidate search.

Managers are especially at fault when they attempt to describe their workplaces. One of the first things I do as a search professional is to assist clients in reviewing and assessing their current culture, the current duties and tasks in the job profile and the competencies required in order to be successful. Without a refreshing examination of these details, interviewers have a tendency to reflect back on a former incumbent instead of focusing on future needs and requirements. This results in a skewed overview of a job as well as the organization culture.

At the same time, I know that candidates legitimately make every effort to sell themselves to a prospective employer. While not intentionally exaggerating, many candidates take credit for accomplishments where credit is not truly due to them. After all, leaders have drilled into employees that teamwork is key to success and as a result, many candidates actually lose sight of what they contributed individually versus the overall team accomplishments.

All of these issues lead to the importance of accurately describing the job for which you are recruiting, accurately describing the organization culture and accurately describing the challenges a new employee would face. If this initial information is inaccurate, successful candidates will quickly determine they made a mistake and will regret accepting their new position. As the employer, you will soon see this error in hiring as well.

However, it is rare to see an individual resign after only a few short months. Instead they simply hunker down and do their work, and all the while they are looking for another job. As you can expect, little work productivity and engagement will result and the employer will soon be trying to fill the position again.

This exact situation was recently reported in a survey conducted by Developmental Dimensions International, a US-based research firm. In their study, one in eight new hires was declared unsuccessful with individuals terminating their job in the first year. According to their survey, the number one reason for hiring mistakes was over reliance on manager evaluations. While the survey was not specific, I can say that my experience suggests again that a poor description of the job at hand and an unintentional misrepresentation of organization culture is often a key part of those manager evaluations. The result, of course, is that the wrong person is hired.

Yet equally as important, the survey also indicated that only 30 per cent of hiring managers are skilled at conducting high-quality interviews. In my view, this isn’t unusual since most hiring managers are not conducting interviews on a frequent enough basis and, in fact, many have not conducted interviews in many years.

When managers are inexperienced interviewers, they fail to develop a connection between interview questions and the competencies required by a successful candidate. As indicated earlier, the managers simply review an old job description and don’t pay any attention to identifying a set of competencies required for the job. Then again, many managers may rely on gut instinct alone rather than assessing the candidate’s responses to objective interview questions.
What executive search professionals have to offer in this case is objective views, consultation and advice on getting the right candidate the first time. We focus on identifying the key competencies, the key challenges a candidate might face, the nature of the organization culture and that of the department in which the candidate will work. I also focus on the reporting structure and the leadership style. Once this is complete, I am able to draw up a set of competencies that will ensure success in the role.

At this point, I apply my expertise to developing questions for the interview. The best questions ask for examples of direct experience including what was the situation, what was their role, what action did they take and what was the result. When candidates are able respond in a systematic and logical way, the interviewers will be able to more accurately assess the best cultural fit and the best fit of skills.

By Patricia Barbato

Insomniac Press

Purchase here (http://www.amazon.ca/Inspire-Your-Career-Strategies-Success/dp/1897178921)

Written in a down to earth manner, almost as the author is speaking directly to the reader, Inspire your career is full of wise counsel from a young lady who progressed quickly in her career. Using personal experience and reflection exercises, the author takes readers on a journey that touches on the many areas new workers confront early.

For instance, she provides advice and tips on understanding the bigger picture, the importance of avoiding assumptions, and the importance of recognizing and dealing with personal frustrations. Finally, the author deals with various transition issues that individuals will face in their career. This is an enjoyable and helpful book especially for new job entrants so don’t let the dense internal layout detract from the value if offers.

Resources – Talent Management Articles

Leadership during an economic downturn is especially difficult and requires a whole different set of skills and capabilities. While leaders may continue to demonstrate passion for their products or services, the challenge is ensuring there is a good number of followers and some strong front line leaders.

 

While change is happening at lightning speed, if you don’t offer a clear and better picture of where you want to be, and if employees can’t see direction and purpose for the company, they will not understand how they can contribute or collaborate to make things work. Start by reviewing the company vision and make the necessary adjustments to address your external environmental forces. Involve employees as much as possible; you’ll be surprised how creative and innovative front line workers really are. Finally, share and communicate this vision as broadly as possible. Help everyone understand, as creating that clear picture will ensure employee commitment and retention.

 

The next big challenge in an economic downturn is actually making things work; implementing the vision through operational strategy and tactics. To do this, you must concentrate on improving the quality of your internal leadership. Take time to put a plan in place to identify and develop your next generation of leaders. It is this group that will provide the front line leadership and innovation required as you move ahead. So what should be included in a training program for this new group of leaders?

 

The following leadership program elements should be considered:

 

1. Company leadership philosophy – leaders can no longer work in isolation, nor can they be successful with an autocratic leadership style. Instead, leaders need to have a win/win approach and work collaboratively with employees to solve common problems. Start your program by exploring how this philosophy will apply in your workplace.

 

2. Self assessment is key – leaders must be very self aware. In other words, they must understand where their strengths and challenges lie and recognize how to build employee strength around them. They must set personal and professional goals that lead to continued personal improvement.

 

3. Goal setting skills – it doesn’t matter what the vision is, if you don’t set specific goals to accomplish the vision, it will soon fall by the wayside. Good leaders set good goals, meaning they are specific, measurable, attainable, and realistic within determined timeframes. This is often a very difficult task for leaders and must be taught at an early stage in development. It needs to become a habit. It needs to be ingrained in everything you do.

 

4. Employee motivation – the new leadership style requires employee involvement in setting win/win goals. Leaders must coach for success instead of policing for failure. In order to do this, leaders need to understand what motivates their employees and to assign tasks that are motivating and challenging.

 

5. How to be a good coach – supervisors need to transform into good coaches for their employees. This new way of interacting helps give people the opportunity to influence their work and creates a collaborative environment where everyone succeeds. Good coaching serves to remove the traditional barriers between supervisor/employee, instead fostering a valuable partnership.

 

6. Communication skills – whereas influence will be the backbone of employee motivation, communication is now an essential skill for all new leaders. Training in planful communication, such as asking questions effectively, dealing with conflict, giving and receiving feedback, presenting ideas with confidence and being assertive are important topics.

 

7. Effective Team building – good team leadership is all about giving clear direction, providing appropriate resources and removing roadblocks so that teams can do their work. Team members must be taught to think independently, to problem solve and to recommend solutions that have an impact on the whole organization.

 

8. Good personal time management – if you could improve productivity by just one hour per day for every employee, what impact would this make on your organization? Time is money and, more than likely, increased efficiency will increase your bottom line. Therefore leaders will need to know how to manage their time wisely and to free up time by delegating to employees.

 

9. Skills in leading change – one of the true corollaries of life and work is that we are always changing and adapting. We never stay the same. This means that leaders need to be skilled not only in personally adapting to change, but in helping employees adapt to change to maintain their productivity. They need to understand the cycle of change, the stages their employees will go through and how to provide support on an ongoing basis.

 

Today’s volatile economic environment, and the daily challenges this creates, calls out for effective leadership throughout the organization. The phrase, “doing more with less” is no longer someone else’s problem; it is now reality for most leaders. Thus strengthening and building your frontline leadership team is a powerful technique for ensuring the culture of your organization continues to focus on productivity, quality and success.

 

Credit: Results Centered Leadership Program, the Achievement Centre.

Resources – Working World Articles

By Barbara Bowes

 

Employee motivation — an individual’s internal drive to achieve a goal — is now one of the most studied areas of human resource management. Over the years, multiple theories have been put forward.

 

 

For instance, Maslow’s popular hierarchy of needs theory suggests that employees are motivated to first look after their physical needs, then their safety and social needs and finally, they are motivated to seek satisfaction for their own ego and self-gratification.

 

The Skinner theory, on the other hand, suggests that if an employee’s behaviour is positively reinforced, then this will lead to ongoing positive outcomes.

One of the older and common motivational strategies has been to reward employees by giving them money. In this case, employers would typically give bonuses for good work as well as increasing wages annually as much as the economy allowed. However, it is also well known that while employee motivation does initially increase, in most cases, the motivation is short lived. One reason for this might be that employees simply forget what their bonus was for and their motivation quietly slips away.

 

In my view, this type of financial reward system has simply taught employees to continually look for money as their only work reward. If an employee sees money, wealth and possessions as the driving values in life, then I doubt that any employer could ever make them happy.

 

However, most employers cannot afford to continue giving bonuses or increasing salaries if the economic situation in their industry sector cannot support it.

As well, if an organization has a well-structured compensation system, there are established salary scales set for each job based on the value of the job to the organization and the market rate for their industry and geography. To arbitrarily increase these salaries based on desires of employees rather than the value to the organization would create chaos. In this case, if salary doesn’t meet an individual’s needs, the employee should move on.

 

So, if money is not considered to be a lasting motivator, what alternative strategies are perceived to be effective for motivating today’s employee? Some of the following strategies have proven effective and can be given consideration for your organization.

 

A sense of achievement – Most employees are motivated by the desire to work in a goal-oriented organization where the work is challenging and employees can gain a sense of achievement by seeing concrete results.

 

Identity and purpose – As social beings, employees typically want to work for an organization where they feel a sense of belonging and can identify with the values of the organization. This is also known as cultural fit.

 

Interesting work – Employees want to be involved in interesting work that provides some variety rather than a job that quickly becomes too routine. Most employees seek work that involves their minds and requires thinking and personal involvement.

 

Team collaboration and reward – Employees enjoy a combination of team-based rewards where a portion of the individual reward is contingent on the group performance. Research suggests this appears to contribute to high employee performance as well as job satisfaction.

 

Making a difference – No matter what the nature of a job, most employees are motivated by the opportunity to make a difference and then sharing in the success when a goal is accomplished.

 

Effective leadership – Employees typically want to do their best and are motivated by leaders who support and back their workers and encourage them to do their best.

 

Goals and objectives – Employees will be motivated when they are fully aware of the goals and objectives of the organization and how their own job goals and objectives fit into the overall goals. The closer the connection, the more motivation the employee will demonstrate.

 

Input and involvement – Our work world is no longer the “do as I told you” environment. In fact, employees want their voices heard, especially if they have an idea for improving work processes and making their work more effective. Employee involvement and employee engagement is the key to success.

 

Opportunity for learning and advancement – Most employees look forward to learning new things and are motivated by having the opportunity to engage in professional development, especially if it represents an opportunity for advancement.

 

Balanced workload – A workload that is out of balance will soon burn your employees out. They will be stressed and overworked and will not only lose their motivation, they may very well quit. Pay attention to life/work balance.

 

Praise, praise, praise – Most employees don’t expect praise, but rewarding employees by praising employee contributions individually and collectively goes a long way toward helping employees stay motivated.

 

Tactful discipline – While it is inevitable that employees may make mistakes in their work, how the supervisor handles it will make a critical difference to sustaining employee motivation. Being tactful, sensitive and using a coaching, teaching model to correct work deficiencies is much more likely to increase motivation.

 

Positive interpersonal work relationships – Creating and sustaining a harmonious work environment where team relationships are positive and where conflict is minimal goes a long way toward maintaining employee motivation.

 

Job security – While I always say the only job security is one’s own skills, I know that employees continue to be motivated by working for an organization where they see that job security has potential. Once their physical security is looked after, employees can start focusing on other things. Thus, it’s important to introduce change slowly and carefully to avoid creating fear about job security.

 

Job enlargement/rotation – Increasing the variety of tasks in a job can also increase employee motivation. Adding new challenges creates new enthusiasm and renews interest. Cross training among employees is a good way to do this.

 

As you can see from the variety of motivational techniques described, there is simply no secret formula that will meet each individual’s personal needs. In fact, employee motivation is far from an exact science, yet I truly believe that employers should stay away from focusing on simply giving money as their only motivational technique. In my opinion, those employees whose prime motivation is money will never be loyal to your organization and will soon move on to the next highest paying job.

 

Barbara J. Bowes, FCHRP, CMC is president of Legacy Bowes Group. She is also host of the weekly Bowes Knows radio show and is the author of Resume Rescue and Taming the Workplace Tigers. She can be reached at barb@legacybowes.com. Learn more at www.barbarabowes.com.