Attract Them With Your Business Strategy
If you want those great employees to come work with you instead of the next guy — they need to know what your organization stands for. Of course, it has to be the right business strategy fit for them, but too many organizations haven’t even done the 1st step:
Determining what your business strategy is
Step 2 putting it into words
Bonus this also improves productivity, quality, & customer satisfaction
To get you started, here are the business strategies of some well known organizations:
Dell: Cut Out All of the Garbage and Eliminate the Bureaucracy. Their success is a result of focusing on improving delivery times, cutting operation costs and maintaining customer service levels. The shorthand version of their business strategy is that Dell cuts out all of the junk and bureaucracy from the business process. How can we eliminate the wasted process steps, quality impediments and the technology hurdles? Clearly defining the business processes is a great starting place, then working to streamline them to the highest degree possible. Perhaps we could set up a prize for suggesting the elimination of the stupidest thing we do that gets in the way of progress.
Dutch Boy: Design - Don't Be Better, Be Different. You’ve got to love the redesign of the paint bucket that Dutch Boy has done in the last few years. The traditional paint bucket has been around for a very long time, and no one ever questioned why. Why is the bucket so heavy, why is it so hard to open and close, why does the paint always drip on the floor? Finally someone did ask why, and they created a product that is both better and different. We need to be on a continuous improvement plan in order to develop value over the long term. As one Greek philosopher said, "Anyone can drive a ship in calm water." True innovation comes from applying metadata to new areas where value has yet to be defined.
Starbucks: Engage All of the Customers' Senses. When you enter into a Starbucks coffee shop, you immediately get hit with sights, sounds and smells. The store layout and color scheme are consistent from store to store. The counter is located just as you walk in and the sounds of the cappuccino machine can be deafening. How can you engage multiple senses in your work? If you get it right, then maybe you, too, can charge $3.50 for a product that you can get free at the office.
3M: Innovate or Die Trying. Innovation is a key to the long-term success of your product service. Innovation can be a bit of a paradox; customers want more functionality, more value, and many times lower price and faster delivery. Innovation is not easy and may not win you a popularity contest from controlling managers, but you only live once. Innovate or die trying. As Mark Twain commented, "The man with a new idea is a crank until the idea succeeds."
Excerpted from "Replicating the Business Strategy of Others", DM Review, 3/06
What Does It Mean To Give MORE Than 100%?
Ever wonder about those people who say they are giving more than 100%? We have all been to those meetings where someone wants you to give over 100%. How about achieving 103%? What makes up 100% in life?
Here's a little mathematical formula that might help you answer these questions:
So, one can conclude with mathematical certainty that while hard work and knowledge will get you close, and attitude will get you there, it's Skillfulness that puts you over the top!
Do the Shoemaker’s Children Have Shoes?
At TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC. they do. Our staff regularly participate in learning that gives us content knowledge and improves our skills for determining needs, designing and developing training, facilitating training, measuring training ROI, and HR consulting.
Thanks, Paul, for a fantastic time learning at the monthly Christian Management Association of Chicago
Tell us what you learned this month and we’ll include it in this segment of future issues.
An Ethical Workplace is an Inspiring Workplace
You may have the coolest employee recognition program, the best training, the highest salaries, and the most comprehensive benefits, but if you’re Enron, well, let’s just say, there’s not going to be a lot of inspirational feeling!
Learn to make your workplace more ethical with ideas from the National Business Ethics Survey (NBES), which asks employees about their perceptions of ethics and compliance at work:
• Trends in the implementation of formal ethics and compliance programs;
• Evidence of ethical culture in organizations;
• Analysis of risk for misconduct;
• Measures of outcomes expected from effective programs; and
• Analysis of the impact of formal program elements and ethical culture on outcomes.
Key Findings from the 2005 Survey
• On a national level, the number of formal ethics and compliance programs are on the rise, but positive outcomes expected of those programs are not. The prevalence of five of the six elements of a formal program increased during the years in which questions were asked about these measures:
• Formal ethics and compliance programs do have an impact, but organizational culture, which has changed little over the years of the NBES study, is more influential in determining outcomes.
• Formal programs make a difference in weaker ethical cultures.
• NBES measured 18 dimensions of ethical culture, and the data show that the actions of leaders and peers significantly influence employees’ ethics. For example:
• Where top management displays certain ethics-related actions, employees are 50% less likely to observe misconduct.
• Ethics-related actions of coworkers can increase employee willingness to report misconduct, by as much as 10%.
• When employees perceive that others are held accountable for their actions, their overall satisfaction increases by 32%.
Furthermore, employees in organizations with strong ethical cultures and full formal programs are 36% less likely to observe misconduct than employees in organizations
with weak culture and full formal programs. Importantly, less than 1% employees in strong cultures did not have any elements of a formal program present, and NBES did reveal a relationship between formal programs and cultures. Therefore it is our initial conclusion, subject to further study, that where cultures are strong, it is in part because a formal program is in place. Even further, formal programs are likely to be an essential element in the maintenance of a
strong culture. While culture matters in making an impact, formal programs are still essential to creating a culture.
• Employees are at risk for misconduct, and where they encounter situations inviting wrongdoing, there is high likelihood that they will also observe at least 1 violation taking place.
• Little change has taken place since 1994 in the extent to which employees observe misconduct in the workplace. Remarkably, in 2005 52% of employees observed at least one type of misconduct taking place; 36% of those employees observed 2 or more violations.
• Of the employees who observed misconduct at work in 2005, just over one half (55%) reported it to management, a 10% decrease since 2003 and a backsliding to levels similar to those in 2000.
• Pressure to compromise standards has also remained unchanged. In 2005, 10% of employees feel such pressure always or fairly often, a level similar to 2003 and down 3% since 2000.
Growing attention to ethics and compliance must, therefore, be supplemented by attention to culture. In 2005, none of the elements of ethical culture (as measured in this study) increased substantially over past years. This may be one reason that outcomes have remained unchanged.
Excerpted from The National Business Ethics Survey: Executive Summary
Self Directed Learning
Tell your employees (in performance appraisals, weekly meetings, or just walking down the hall) what they need to improve and that the organization will pay for their learning. They’ll run right out and learn! Wrong. Time after time, we heart frustration from organizations that provide the $ and don’t understand why their staff aren’t taking advantage.
Their performance (and compensation) isn’t measured on whether they learned these specific things, or put them into practice,
they have no idea where to go to get the learning, or it’ll be too time consuming to find it.
Yes, the 1st one can be solved easily, but we also need to provide them with lots of resources. These can be books, CD’s, web-based training, group training, videos that you design & implement, and they can also be simply lists of already existing learning they can access outside your organization.
A few examples of already existing learning:
● Foreign language training
— language study partner from another country at www.mylanguageexchange.com
— audio tapes at www.itunes.com
● University & junior college courses
— evening in person group sessions
— self study online synchronous classes
— self study online asynchronous with a facilitator and other students to interact with
— podcasts to download into IPOD
● Self study workbooks
— Crisp 50 Minute Book Series, email email@example.com for a complete list of titles
Creating a Mentoring Culture
When Robert L. Jeffrey Jr. decided to start his own magazine, he knew he would need advice from other entrepreneurs in publishing. So Jeffrey joined a Rotarian sponsored mentoring program through the University of Washington’s Business and Economic Development Center. The council of mentors studied Jeffrey’s business, offered him advice about publishing, and presented him with suggestions for growing his magazine’s distribution. Jeffrey took their advice, partnering with another local publication to build up circulation and increase advertising rates.
Today, 3 years later, the magazine was recently ranked as one of the 50 fastest-growing business in the Seattle area by the Puget Sound Business Journal. "We had done OK on our own, but without the help of these mentors, we wouldn’t have grown so fast," says Jeffrey. He was so impressed with the mentor program that he decided to get involved and give back to it by joining.
In Canada, Scott Drach takes a more one-on-one approach to mentorships. Drach is director of human resources for Boeing Canada Technology, where he oversees the company’s leadership development program. Mentorships are a key component of that program, and Drach currently mentors 2 employees.
2 to 4 times a year, he sits down with his proteges and talks with them about their current position in the company, how their careers are going, and what kind of future they see for themselves at Boeing. "This kind of relationship is helpful because it tells people inside the organization that other people care and are concerned about them." Drach says.
Tips for setting up a program that works for your organization:
Ask around — Managers who want to launch mentoring programs should gauge employee interest to make sure there are enough people willing to participate as mentors. Buy-in from senior management is also important because supervisors need to know if their employees will be participating in the program.
Choose wisely — Mentoring programs only work if the mentors are willing to devote themselves wholeheartedly. Be sure to pick mentors who are committed to the process from beginning to end. Conduct a formal orientation to describe exactly what will be expected.
Stay active — Once you pick your mentors, encourage them to stay involved with the people they advise. Good ways to keep them involved are monthly or quarterly lunch meetings. Another viable option: golf outings. The very best mentoring programs always have events planned.
Keep it real — Mentoring is about more than just periodic get-togethers. Mentors should ask good questions and get to the heart of a protege’s experience, finding out what’s happening on the job and learning about the employee’s goals. Then they can get to the important work of dishing out good advice.
Adapted from The Rotarian, 4/06
MAY SPECIAL DAYS
Peace of Mind Month
Better Sleep Month
May 1-7 – Get Happy Week
May 2 – Teacher Day, Brothers & Sisters Day, Be Kind to Smelly People Day
(Hopefully, your teachers & siblings aren’t smelly!)
Email TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC. for ideas on how to celebrate any of these days.
PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT CONFERENCES
May 18-21, 2006
May 28-31, 2006
June 11-14, 2006
(TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC. is running the Conference Bookstore)
June 14-17, 2006
June 22-23, 2006
June 25-28, 2006
July 7-9, 2006
July 26-30, 2006
July 28-30, 2006
October 4-6, 2006
WAYS TO VOLUNTEER & GIVE
select by type of work project
select by country and date
select by service program conditions
select by cost
Donate old Suits
Check with your local Dress Barn. Some have programs to help unfortunate women get jobs by supplying them with business suits people have donated. Plus, they offer the donator a 10% off coupon for any purchase. Give a little, get a little!
Donate PCs to National Cristina Foundation,http://www.cristina.org
Recycle PCs and other computer products at Hewlett Packard and Dell. See their websites for details.
Find local Electronics recyclers at http://www.earth911.org and http://www.ebay.com/rethink
Copyright 2006 TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC. All rights reserved.
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