Recruit, Inspire & Retain



Subject: Recruit, Inspire & Retain, April, 2000

YEAH! The 1st issue of RECRUIT INSPIRE & RETAIN by e-mail! You've been getting it in the mail, some of you, for 10 years. Now you have an easy way to print or forward to others, plus archives by keyword at our web site


You can put the Training Systems, Inc. web site on your Windows taskbar! Just right click a blank area of your taskbar and select Toolbars/New Toolbar from the drop down menu. In the new Toolbar box, enter It's that simple! Then you can have immediate access to great recruiting, inspiring, training & retaining tips, ideas & resources! 




Spring 2000 


YOU CAN MAKE PROFITS TRAINING EMPLOYEES excerpts from Dr. Ed E. Gordon's "Skill Wars"

In an age of technology, people make the difference. Ameritech

During the 20th century, America won the 3 great wars that largely defined her democratic existence and prosperity: World War I, World War II, and the Cold War. At the beginning of the 3rd millennium America is again locked in global conflict, a "skill war", that will again define her prosperity and decide if the United States is to continue to be a world leader in the 21st century.

The new "weapons" in this 21st century war are not tanks, planes, or ships, but the minds and creativity of all our people. The battleground has shifted from distant foreign lands to our local offices, production facilities, and classrooms in the workplace, school, or home. The "enemy" is much more difficult to see. For it is the ignorance inside each of us, the fear on the unknown, of admitting "we just don't get it".

In the new high-tech global economy, skills have become the "new currency". We need to manage and measure workplace performance and profit.

Winning the Skill Wars means altering our 20th century perspectives with a wider view of the skills people will need for productive work in the 21st century. One recent morning in a typical downtown high-rise office building, a group of people gathered around the office coffee machine. It was a cold, windy, January day. Across from their office a new building was rising. As usual, the iron workers were going about their jobs. One office worker took a big piece of white cardboard and wrote "72Ί" on it in big, bold, red numbers and held it up to the window. An iron worker grabbed a nearby piece of plywood, and scrawled his response: "$200 PER HOUR!"

American business is underplaying the significance of their employees' knowledge and skills. The simple fact is that America has run out of adequate numbers of well-educated, problem-solving, technically astute workers. As U.S. unemployment continues to fall, every business sector is screaming that it cannot find "skilled" workers.

In today's stripped-down, outsourced, re-engineered, high-tech workplace, each employee's contribution assumes ever greater importance. Yet, the development of this key resource through training and education lags far behind our major foreign competitors.

As managers, we need a realistic business plan that gives us the tools to re-engineer our organization's human capital investment for greater productivity and profit. These tools are The Human Capital Scoreboard™. They quantify the results for practically any training/education: 

1. a Managed Performance Matrix, 
2. a Knowledge Economic Model, 
3. the Workforce Education Triad
4. planning maps, and 
5. a Human Capital Return-on-Investment Worksheet
™, addressing serious pitfalls that have compromised previous efforts at making this a standard business calculation. These tools were developed with an economist, a CPA/tax attorney, and a quality engineer to prepare a 9 step human capital ROI worksheet that quantifies people performance to the bottom line.


Get Ed's book, Skill Wars, by calling 800-469-3560. Order one for every senior manager. Only $21.95 + S&H. ------------------------------------------------------------------


Have a recruitment, inspiration or retention question? Mail to  and we'll post your question and the answer in Ask the Experts at

************************ Who's Wearing Fun Meters?

* A public library-employee's husband brought a Fun Meter home from training. She's considering using them in her "Reading Is Fun" program.

* Concierge at Ontario Place office building – asked if I was having fun ‘cause he was, so I gave him mine.



WHAT WOULD YOU DO? What department makes the decision to provide computer software training? Results: 

* 42% - IS/MIS Dept. 
* 26% - HR Dept. 
* 16% - Training Dept. 
* 9% - HR/Training Dept. 
* 7% - Exec. Office NIU Survey

Companies are placing more emphasis on computer training and it's not just management information systems (MIS) departments that are leading the charge to update skills, says an NIU Rockford technology survey conducted in September, 1999.

Julia Valdez, City of Rockford training and employee relations coordinator says, "We have people coming in to fill out job applications that say they know software packages and they don't. When people have certification, at least we know they have the skills we are looking for."

Finding reputable training resources is critical to successfully build skills. Fifty-five percent of respondents rely on referrals from others to find qualified trainers. "When you're taking employees off the job for the day, losing productivity to train them, you want to provide high-quality training," says Belvidere and Alpine Bank's Beck. "We want to see what the trainer can deliver, and it better be good." adapted with permission from Conference Center Update Spring 2000


What department makes the decision to provide computer software training in YOUR organization? Let us know your answer, and we'll publish it in the next issue AND send you a FREE $12.95 book of your choice from our catalogue. 800-469-3560, Fax: 815-469-0886, e-mail: mail to:  --------------------------------------- ?????????????????????????????????



Supposedly true "Communications" to employees: 

* As of tomorrow, employees will only be able to access the building using individual security cards. Pictures will be taken next Wednesday and employees will receive their cards in two weeks. (From a major software company in Redmond, WA.) 
* What I need is a list of specific unknown problems we will encounter. (From the manager of a trucking company.) 
* This project is so important, we can't let things that are more important interfere with it. (From the Advertising Manager of a major U.S. parcel delivery service.)

True – except for hiring! 
* Let us not be too particular: it is better to have old secondhand diamonds than none at all.
– Mark Twain

Time Management: 

If you want to get a favor done 
By some obliging friend, 
And want a promise, safe and sure, 
On which you may depend, 
Don't go to him who always has 
Much leisure time to plan, 
But if you want your favor done, 
Just ask the busy man.

The man with leisure never has 
A moment he can spare; 
He's always "putting off" until 
His friends are in despair. 
But he whose every waking hour 
Is crowded full of work, 
Forget the art of wasting time
He cannot stop to shirk.

So when you want a favor done, 
And want it right away, 
Go to the man who constantly 
Works twenty hours a day. 
He'll find a moment sure, somewhere, 
That has no other use, 
And serve you while the idle man 
Is framing an excuse. 

— New York Ledger

Our Measure of Success: 

You can use most any measure when you're speaking of success. 
You can measure it in the fancy home or car or dress. 
But the measure of your real success is one you cannot spend 
It's the way your son describes you when he's talking to a friend.



COOL RECRUITMENT TIPS. . . from some great companies: 

* send baskets of food and flowers to prospects' homes 
* show a job prospect where their seat would be and give them an e-mail address 
* purchase a condominium for a key recruit to live in, and offer him ownership of it if he stays on for 3 years 
* lease BMWs for all employees who stay at your company for one year

Get more tips on recruiting great employees by clicking ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


You can put the Training Systems, Inc. web site on your Windows taskbar! Just right click a blank area of your taskbar and select Toolbars/New Toolbar from the drop down menu. In the new Toolbar box, enter It's that simple! Then you can have immediate access to great recruiting, inspiring, training & retaining tips, ideas & resources!


COOL CALLS "Your price has been lowered" – Angelina called from our toner cartridge recycler (Cardinal Cartridge) to tell us the invoice we'd receive for our standard order would be $10 less than before. That's a first!

"Thank you for helping me – my desk has never been cleaner." Janice called weeks before to order Ten Steps to Determining the Return on Your Training Investment (our worksheet for measuring ROI on training) for her boss. Her response to my "How are you?" wasn't the socially acceptable, "Fine", but, "I'm so busy and I can't get it all done!" I gave her a few tips on prioritizing, including the now Training Systems famous "A" priorities are those things which if you don't do them today before you go home will cause you to lose your job or lose credibility.

Janice called back weeks later simply to tell me about her clean desk and that the desire to "not lose face" is what turned around her prioritizing.



TOOL BOX: Resources to Help You Recruit, Inspire & Retain Employees

WEB – links to over 300 salary surveys, including profession-specific ones.
– a site from the Bureau of Labor Statistics that has salary estimates for occupations by state and selected metropolitan areas
– get details on donating a suit or business dress for a low-income woman to wear on job interviews and her first days on a new job
– managing at-home workers
– articles on recruiting
– help-wanted listing for unusual jobs Bench marking basics:

Books: NEW! – Creating Highly Interactive Training Quickly & Effectively, by Carolyn B. Thompson Great new book that gives you the step-by-step process for putting together group and self-study training with all the methods you need! Full of examples illustrating how each piece should look, and photos of actual training. Call 800-469-3560 or go to to order.

NEW! – 30 Ways to Shine, by Denise Bissonnette, is a great new resource to get any employee off to a great start! It's a gold mine of practical tips, suggestions and contains a "daily Challenge activity" for new employees to grow and shine in 30 key areas! Call 800-469-3560 or go to to order.

NEW! – Skill Wars, by Dr. Ed E. Gordon, helps you learn how to win your battle for productivity & profits. See excerpts at beginning of this newsletter. Call 800-469-3560 or go to to order.

Magazines: Life@Work is a magazine with a Christian perspective on surviving and thriving in today's work place. To subscribe, call 877-543-9675 or e-mail to: 

Award Opportunities: HR Service Excellence Award is give each year to the best Human Resources departments in America to give recognition for the outstanding service they provide to their internal customers. Go to for details.


Have a recruitment, inspiration or retention idea? Mail to and we'll post your question and the answer at


IDEAS TO INSPIRE Cube Etiquette– A reader tells us that her company's cubicle workers were being interrupted during visits by others to see surrounding renovations, so employees are thinking about doing a little program in cubicle etiquette–including such items as rear-view mirrors so people can see who's lurking behind them a code system to let potential interrupters know whether a cube denizen doesn't want to be disturbed, or it's OK if quick, and so on.

Reduce Stress - Hang with Your Pet– Everyone knows that nothing eases stress like a family pet. Now scientists have found that, even with people who are taking blood pressure mediation, the family dog can be a wonderfully calming influence. Although a powerful tool in lowering blood pressure, prescription medication doesn't always work when stress is at its peak, such as when you're rushing to make the express mail drop, when you're arguing with a co-worker, or when you're stuck in maddening rush-hour traffic.

Researchers from the State University of New York at Buffalo studied 48 stockbrokers–men and women–who were taking blood pressure medication. The SUNY team then instructed each stockbroker to:

* calm an enraged investor who had just lost $86,000 due to the broker's bad advice, and 
* count backwards as fast as possible by increments of 17.

Some members of the test group had a family pet in the room during the study; others did not.

The findings were clear: the brokers who had a family pet in the room experienced only a mild jump in blood pressure. Those placed in the stressful situations on they own saw their blood pressure zoom up by almost 20 points.

So the next time you're feeling super stressed, spend some time with your dog. It's good for both of you.

Get more tips on inspiring your employees by clicking ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ You can put the Training Systems, Inc. web site on your Windows taskbar! Just right click a blank area of your taskbar and select Toolbars/New Toolbar from the drop down menu. In the new Toolbar box, enter It's that simple! Then you can have immediate access to great recruiting, inspiring, training & retaining tips, ideas & resources!


TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC. ASSOCIATE Steve Sligar says... It is common practice for most businesses to know what business they are in and the reasons for doing business. Many businesses choose to write a mission statement to show themselves and others just what they are about. Often key words describe quality services and/or products with a sense of looking to the future for continued growth and profits. There may be information about the type of business or the importance of technology or people to help fulfill the mission. Sometimes there are statements about the way business is done such as a caring or supportive place. Those of you who have gone through the process of writing a clear and accurate mission statement know it to be labor intensive and a time to clarify your values, beliefs, and understanding of the nature of your business.

Have you applied a similar process to yourself? Steve Covey, Peter Senge, and Laurie Beth Jones all recommend developing your own personal mission statement. What is the business YOU are in? What are your beliefs, values, and personal goals? Can you tell others in a clear and concise statement what you are about? Do you have a vision and mission as to where you are heading? A tall order and one that is just as labor intensive and rewarding as defining one for your business.

About three years ago as I was helping a small business develop a mission statement, I applied these same questions to myself. I found I was unable to answer the simple questions without a complicated answer so I began to develop my personal mission statement. I read books and articles, talked with personal and business associates, and spent some time in quiet reflection until I was able to state the following:

My faith, trust, and belief in others are tools for helping them to learn and improve.

I use this statement today as a way to guide my activities and decide if I am in synch with my life's work, which is to facilitate workplace learning. I welcome comments or an opportunity to discuss this with you further.




* A British worker was awarded damages for having an excessive workload, a first in England. Source People Management

* Percentage of this year's Inc. 500 that offer all full-time employees Health Insurance 97% Bonus plan 81% Retirement plan 69% Disability insurance 62% Life insurance 59% Tuition reimbursement 50% Profit sharing 48% Stock options 24% Sabbaticals 6%

* The Wall Street Journal reports that flu shots are the latest way companies are telling employees that they matter. Boeing had a medical team set up shop in its cafeteria and the line for $8 flu shots was longer than the line for lunch. Pep e Motors in White Plains brought in a visiting nurse service for $600. Teradyne Inc. in Boston spent about $5,000 for on-site flu shots and a company spokesman noted, It's a no-brainer."

Get more tips on retaining great employees by clicking



You can put the Training Systems, Inc. web site on your Windows taskbar! Just right click a blank area of your taskbar and select Toolbars/New Toolbar from the drop down menu. In the new Toolbar box, enter It's that simple! Then you can have immediate access to great recruiting, inspiring, training & retaining tips, ideas & resources!

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PLACES TO GO, THINGS TO DO April 27th Take Our Daughters to Work Day. Call 800-676-7780 or visit for details.

April 30th – May 3rd Corporate Universities 2000: Benchmarks for the New Millennium Symposium & Expo, Las Vegas, NV. Call 800-946-1210 or visit for details.

May 4th-6th Information Technology Training Association (ITTA), Hilton DFW Lakes Executive Conference Center, Grapevine, TX. Call 512-502-9300, Ext.102 or visit for details.

May 8th-10th American Society for Quality (ASQ) Conference, Indianapolis Convention Center, Indianapolis, IN. Call 414-272-8575 or visit for details.

May 21st-24th Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) Conference, Las Vegas Convention Center, Las Vegas, NV. Call 703-548-3440 or visit for details.

May 21st-25th American Society for Training & Development (ASTD) International Conference and Exposition, Dallas Convention Center, Dallas, TX. Call 703-683-8100 or visit for details.

May 25th-26th American Productivity & Quality Center Conference, Showcasing Successful Knowledge Management Implementation, Westin Riverwalk Hotel, San Antonio, TX. Call 800-776-9676 or visit for details.

May, 2000 National Association of Governor's Councils on Physical Fitness and Sports National Employees Health & Fitness Event. Call 317-237-5630 or visit for details.

June 25th-28th SHRM 52nd Annual Conference and Exposition, Las Vegas. Call 800-283-7476 or visit for details.