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Are your staff your greatest asset or liability?
One of the primary reasons given by candidates seeking alternative employment is that they seek growth… Don’t allow your people to be bored to the point where they stop giving a damn about your company and start looking for new opportunities. Challenge them by expanding what they know and growing what they can do.
Remember finding and keeping talent is no longer a HR issue but a strategic company priority.
If you have apathy in your company, you ought to know that there was some consent to its existence. If your people seem unmotivated and bored, it may have been noticed but not addressed.
Before this statement sounds like airy-fairy conjecture, let’s start at the beginning.
People have moods, nuances and sensitivities. You learn to accept that fact when employing them to work for you. You accept that they are complex creatures which need to be kept interested in what they do. If they glaze over and go about ticking boxes, you’re probably beginning to lose money or opportunity. They understand their work so well that their brains no longer need to apply thought to actions.
People get bored. Once they are bored, their interest and productivity sputters to a stall. Yes, they’ll perform on autopilot and your margin won’t feel a thing. That’s fine, until monotony starts fidgeting with their primal brains.
At some point, if your staff are left to their own devices and are not encouraged to grow their skills, your productivity is likely to stagnate and stall. The erosion is quiet, but impactful. These are the first stages of apathy and inefficiency.
The peak of efficiency lies in cross-skilling individuals to do more than what their Job Description states; this ought to be a living document, especially when words like ad hoc tasks are included within it. A contract is the result of negotiation – don’t let it go underutilized. Think of how your Cleaner can be skilled to relieve your Receptionist during lunchtime. You should be training them into being a bigger asset to your company.
Your organisation will never retain the best talent and or be the biggest or best if your staff’s brains are wilting in the humdrum of everyday routines. Soon your People become a liability due to boredom. Boredom breeds indifference. Indifference opens the gates to mistakes and wayward thoughts.
You hired “Thought Engines”. Many managers forget this specific part of the employment deal over time. They assume that since people are doing what they are paid for, they are probably comfortable and content to carry on with the status quo.
You do not want your people to reach the point of doing their jobs with their eyes closed. Ideally, they should be constantly challenging themselves into doing what they should - simpler, better and faster. Creativity only thrives in an environment that stimulates a desire to go further, faster and stronger. Such traits can only come about if both parties adopt a learning culture.
How do you achieve that outcome? You train people. Regularly. Your business ought to be fertile ground for the development and acquisition of new skills.
The simple truth is that people walk into your company with a diverse set of unspoken skills. You have a choice to find and acknowledge them, or stand the risk of underperforming staff and or lose your staff to companies that offer better growth opportunities.
How to get the right staff the 1st time around? For any top performing business, being ... read more
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