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Business Management Information
More Articles from Business Management Information:
Tales from the Corporate Frontlines: Training is in the Eye of the Beholder
This article relates to the Training competency, commonly evaluated in employee surveys. It comments on the value of training to both the company and its workforce. The Training competency investigates how your employees perceive the available training opportunities and quality of training. Growing an organization's internal knowledge base is crucial to the success of any business and ensuring a growing knowledge base means investing in the training of your employees. A Gallup poll conducted in 1998 reported that eight out of 10 employees said they would be more likely to stay with their present employer if they were offered more or better training. Specifically, the questions included in this competency are written to measure the adequacy, availability, content of training, and satisfaction with the delivery of training within your organization.
Never Wrestle with a PIG
The business books at the library and book stores fill many shelves. Some authors tend to run a little long at the keyboard. There is one voice that stands out from the crowd, Mark McCormack.
How Managers Can Help Retain Their Best Employees
A major problem for employers today is attracting the best talent, and then retaining key employees. Research shows that the key ingredient for retention lies within the manager's ability to understand what employees really want.
Training Adults, Not Teaching Children
Adults are vulnerable to personal and professional embarrassment from poor performance in the training program. Poor performance in the classroom may become the basis for personnel decisions by supervisors or the source of ridicule by peers. Economic benefits or promotion may be associated with the training program, creating a feeling of pressure to succeed. The way you handle these fears will largely determine the effectiveness and usefulness of your training program. To fail to recognize that adults have legitimate fears, or to treat them as children, is to guarantee failure.
Motor Vehicle Policy and Your Employee Risks
It is becoming more common for employers to require employees to use their personnel motor vehicles for business use. Reimbursement for business use is commonly by way of a kilometre/mileage allowance or a general motor vehicle allowance for the year.
Budgets! There I've said it. For some the most hated and feared word in business. But it doesn't have to be that way. As a matter of fact, a well thought out and constructed budget can be the small business owners best friend. After all, a budget is just a laid out plan to produce profits and profits is what we are all after.
Radical Creativity from Incremental Creativity ? large movements from small changes
Positive radical movement is the holy grail of nearly every decision maker. Every CEO wants to radically shift his profit and loss statement into the black, every inventor yearns to find the next killer gadget and every screenwriter wants to make the next significant leap in film.
Why Employees Are the Best Source of Cost-cutting Ideas
Cost cutting has become a necessary and important reality in the modern corporate world. Yet many executives do not realize that their people are actually the best source of cost reduction ideas.
Hire People For What They Do Best
I recently flew from Seattle to Atlanta, I realized, just as we began our taxi, that it takes hundreds of support personnel to maintain a flight. I saw the woman at the check-in desk, security, pilots, luggage handlers, flight crews, air controllers, and the various staff physically on the tarmac doing whatever people do on an airport tarmac.
Work Life a Balancing Act
Australians are loosing their laidback, carefree reputation, as we continue to work longer hours, exercise less and neglect our leisure and family time.
How Your Business Can Pick A Software Developer
Eventually, your business is going to need to have some software development. Your business is unique - you can't rely on a huge, faceless corporation to handle your unique needs with a shrinkwrapped, mass produced, production-line solution. You need custom software, and to get it, you'll need to pick an outside software developer. A hired gun.
Four Steps to Better Performance Reviews
Direct reports-people who need direction and leadership-rely on their leaders to give them feedback and mentoring, not just management and evaluations. However, these people who most need their boss's help frequently lack the guidance that would enable them move to the next levels of success-theirs, their team's and the company's. Too often leaders are not prepared or trained to conduct an appraisal that stretches performance and ensures their direct reports' development. Instead, the appraisals become confrontational and judgmental; goals are not clear; neither person is prepared; and the discussion occurs when it's too late to do anything about the problem. Today's organizations demand more from their leaders. Therefore, a well thought out performance appraisal system, clear expectations, reviews that inspire, and action plans are critical to the individual's and organization's success.
Recognition: A Quick, Low-cost Way to Motivate Employees
Recognizing good performance through praise or other positive action is one of the simplest and most cost-effective ways to motivate people. It provides three major benefits: It lets people know that their performance was valued, and increases the likelihood that they will continue to perform well. It builds confidence so that people are willing to try new things, and develop further in their jobs. It leads to greater job satisfaction which in turn builds commitment to the manager and the employer.
Does Your Management Style Remind People Of Something They Read In Dilbert?
With thanks to Jeff Foxworthy, the comedian who does the "You might be a redneck series of jokes.
Leadership: Stoking The Success Train
Everyone wants to succeed yet everyone has a different perception of what success means and what it will bring into their lives. It is a means of gaining financial freedom for some and for others it means a healthy, happy family life. There are others who define their success by the power that their job title brings and others who feel successful when they believe their leadership skills excel above others.
Creating A Vision ? Bringing Your Dreams Into Reality
Do you have some goals you want to achieve or dreams you want to fulfill? A useful tool in reaching the outcomes you desire is the creation of a vision, which can be short or long-term. I recommend writing down specifics to add clarity and focus.
Organizational Capital in Politics, War, Sports and Business
Intangible Corporate Assets such as Organizational Capital, Blue Sky and Brand Name Capital, actually they all have a common thread in my opinion. Here are some thoughts on these issues. And first I would like to comment on a couple of UCLA, Anderson School of Business items which are of interest. And I must say these research pieces are somewhat cutting edge, in business management theory.
Keeping and Motivating the Best Employees
Keeping and Motivating the Best Employees In "You Win With People" we talked about the need to hire the very best people to build your team. Now that you've done that the question becomes, how do you keep them, and how do you keep them motivated. Much has been written about Employee Retention and about Motivation. But most of what has been written has been written in terms of the average employee. In fact, if you are measured at all by your company in this area, it's almost always a measurement of employee retention. But all turnover is not bad turnover, so a retention measurement is actually a false measurement of how you're hiring and firing practice helped the company. So back to the question. How do you keep and motivate the best employees that you've hired? All human beings have basic needs that must be met, starting with food and shelter. So it's obvious that you must pay a fair wage and provide adequate benefits or people won't be able to stay with you. But once the basic needs are met, does it require more money or more elaborate benefits packages to keep the best employees? In reality, neither are truly required. Pay and benefits only go so far, and the best employees, the intelligent, self motivated, team oriented, results oriented employees are not out to squeeze the last dollar from their employers. The best employees have other needs that must be met and the good news is that you, their manager can meet these needs yourself. Recent studies of highly motivated employees show that once their basic needs are met that other factors keep them motivated and interested in their jobs. Here are the 12 questions that the best employees want to be answered: 1. Do I know what is expected of me at work? 2. Do I have the materials and equipment I need to do my work right? 3. At work, do I have the opportunity to do what I do best every day? 4. In the last 7 days, have I received recognition or praise for doing good work? 5. Does my supervisor, or someone at work, seem to care about me as a person? 6. Is there someone at work who encourages my development? 7. At work, do my opinions seem to count? 8. Does the mission/purpose of my company make me feel my job is important? 9. Are my coworkers committed to doing quality work? 10. Do I have a best friend at work? 11. In the last 6 months, has someone at work talked to me about my progress? 12. This last year, have I had opportunities at work to learn and grow? It's important to note that of these 12 questions, 11 of them (all except number 8) are controlled locally by the employee, the manager, or the supervisor. This means that the first and second line managers have enormous control over their ability to motivate and retain the talented employees that they've hired. You can even argue that you directly impact number 8 based on how you represent the company. Look back at your own career and think about the people you've worked for and which one's you were most willing to follow. Were these the needs that that leader met for you? Goals and Objectives Picture this scenario and see if it seems familiar to you. "Dave, I need you to give me the goals and objectives for your group for the new year". "Sure boss. What would you like them to look like?" "You know. The usual. Increase productivity by 10%. Reduce your headcount by 15%. Implement some new controls. Oh, and I need them in two days." Frankly, I've had this discussion about 25 times in my career and it always made me just a little bit crazy. Without any real look at what is going to happen this year, or any idea what the top executives are shooting for, I'm going to lay out my department's goals for the next year. Then I'm going to drive my people to meet these goals so that I get a good review and an increase in salary. Not only does this scenario ignore the direction that should be set by the top executives, but it also misses the single most important reason you are in business..... The customer. So, while you're out doing the victory dance for meeting your objectives, your customer is sticking sharp pins into a voodoo doll that bears a remarkable resemblance to you. Let's cut right to the chase here. When you create your departmental objectives based on the above conversation, the only thing you are really thinking about is getting the task complete so that you can check it off your list. You're not thinking about customer satisfaction, or how you are going to improve quality, or even major initiatives that you know (or don't know) are coming your way. You're thinking about getting the boss off your back. And why not? The exercise above is just that, an exercise. So, how should objectives really be set? From the top down. The very top. The CEO of your company should be sitting down with his top executives and laying out the 2 or 3 top priorities for the company for next year. Those priorities represent the vision for the company. Each executive takes those 2 or 3 priorities and determines what they can do to support the vision. Working together the executives assure that the goals that they are passing down to the next level of management are consistent with each other and with the overall company goals. Nothing can do more damage to a company and its customers' then major functional areas with conflicting or unrelated goals and objectives. After the buy in has been received at that level, those visions and goals are passed down to the next level of management, where more specific goals and objectives are designed and shared with their customers. It's critical that everyone in the company see and understand the vision from the top, and that everyone understands what they are doing to support the vision. By developing a company vision at the top and then developing goals and objectives that explicitly support those goals you can then be sure that you are supporting the companies true goals. Then when you look at what you have accomplished for the year you and your customers will be looking at the same results. So, how should you act on this? Start now. And start by asking your boss for the goals and objectives of your senior executives so that you can stay in synch. Plant the seed that you would like to see them to make sure you are marching down the right path and then share what you have developed with your customers. If nothing else it will highlight where you and your customers are going. Remember, developing goals and objectives for your team that are fundamentally aligned with the companies strategic objectives is a fundamental part of good management.
Qualities of a Great Manager
In the call center environment we are often only as successful as the people we hire. While our front line employees are critical to our business, choosing the right managers powerfully impact your success. So what makes a good manager? Ask 100 people and you might get 100 different answers. While the behaviors that make a great manager may be open to interpretation, there are some competencies and corresponding questions, which stand the test of time.
Managing YOUR Expectations
I sit on the board of an organization and at the last meeting found myself speaking with another board member named Standolyn Robertson. Standolyn is also a business owner and our conversation was about managing expectations ? both ours and our clients. She said something that is very true--'It is about using our knowledge and expertise to foresee and side-step roadblocks, revise unrealistic timelines and debunk myths.' And I couldn't agree more.
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