Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Hiring Blamed for Poor Performance

A consulting firm in California confirmed that nearly one third of CEO’s say that as many as half of their new employees haven’t been meeting expectations. A principle of the firm noted that most CEO’s have no faith in their hiring processes.

That is the first problem for the CEO. Don’t call it a process. Most companies don’t have a process. I work with small companies and companies with over 5000 employees and none exhibit a real “Hiring and Selection” Process. All expect their hiring or recruitment personnel to just find the right people. Those people are the ones with the skills and training combined with the right attitude and excellent work ethic just waiting to be interviewed. Wrong!

The difference in processes can vary from using a simple HRIS system for only resume retrieval to a type written job description that includes suggested behavioral interviewing questions. I just can’t believe that it’s taking a rocket-scientist to realize that people are failing in the workplace because employers don’t have the proper “hiring and selection” process. Most companies today have yet to realize that finding the “right” person for the right job or just hiring the right person with the right attitude, skill, training, and work ethic takes more than just leaving the front door open.

We have now found the culprit for poor performance. The process that must determine whether someone has or is lacking the skill, training, attitude, and ethics is failing not because of lack of process, but a lack of commitment within that CEO’s company. The tools, methodology, technology, format, and human components are all available but no one appears to have the energy or commitment to put it all together.

Since we can’t find the people to integrate the tools, technology, format, and people to provide a well-rounded “hiring and selection” process, we must take three steps back and again blame it on the process….or is it the people?

If companies don’t take their hiring practices seriously, they will eliminating any opportunity of finding the person with the right attitude, skill, training and ethics that can make a difference!

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1st Row:
Mark Corey, Atlantic County Utilities Authority
Carolyn Conover, Atlantic County Dept of Intergenerational Service
Cindy Smith, Atlantic County Dept of Family Community Development
Terry Petruzzi, Atlantic County Animal Shelter
Karla Guy, Atlantic County Dept of Family Community Development
Audrey Alpheaus, Atlantic County Dept of Family Community Development

2nd Row:
Ryan Broadley Driscoll, Broadley Mechanical Contractors
Clarence Davenport, Atlantic County Dept of Family Community Development
Jeff Monroe, Atlantic County Dept of Human Services
Bob Ellis, Fitzpatrick, Bongiovanni, and Kelly CPAs

Not Pictured: John Hurff, Gleeson's Audio Video

"I just completed my last class tonight and I want to thank the ACUA for allowing me to attend this class. This class was spread out over sometime and I feel that this made it more of a learning experience over the time and I highly recommend this class for all the group leaders." - Mark Corey, Group Leader, ACUA

Monday, January 28, 2008

Why Hire a Coach? By Richard Hohmann

Work–Life Balance still a Key Issue for Men

A new Workplace Insights survey found out that half the moms say they split their time equally between work and home while just thirty – two percent of the men said they balance their work-life equally.

Men have a more difficult time of balancing their work-life and really would prefer more flexibility that would enhance their work-life balance. Flexibility doesn’t replace good time-management skills and most male managers need to improve their time management skills. They attempt to use the latest electronic devices to compliment their lifestyle but end up spending thirty percent more time working with the device as opposed to just writing it down, on a legal pad or whatever is available.

The use of a paper planning and administration system may save you up to thirty minutes a day, but who’s counting? Make sure you use the tools that compliment your work-life goals. A Business Coach who is well versed in Time Management techniques can offer you options that may help satisfy that work-life dilemma. Remember, just because you think it should work better, doesn’t always mean it does.

Richard Hohmann is the leading Coach of Innovative Leadership. Call to test drive coaching for 30 min, no obligation. 609.390.2830.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

The Weather Outside is Frightful!

Don’t let this holiday song provide a foundation theme for 2008! You certainly can tell it is winter by the methodology being used by the weather forecasters to panic the local residents into spending hours at the grocery store buying all the necessities for a mid 1950’s blizzard. I sit there listening to them tell me that the potential for the front moving rapidly from the South up the coast colliding with the Arctic air being driven down by a Canadian high located over some Lake near Michigan should produce a tremendous snowstorm that supposedly we have all been waiting for. I wake up the next morning and I find a “dusting” if anything but the result of the forecast is that WAWA has sold more milk and bread compared to previous snow storm announcements (for those not in the Philadelphia market, WAWA is the leading convenience store where you buy milk and bread) We are starting to hear the same thing about a global recession. After conducting their annual S.W.O.T., it has now become part of everyone’s strategic plan to list an economic recession as the major external threat that may affect their business success for the upcoming year. I guess we better get in line at your local WAWA to buy cost reduction measures, recession-proof armor, revenue producing fairy dust, and more. Unfortunately, I can feel the cost-cutting measures starting to unfold as I am writing this article.

There is no question that the economy may more than likely turn “chilly” in the upcoming year and the predictions for the real estate market continue to appear “frigid”. Forecasters are predicting that there is a heightened interest in career development and paying down personal debt. Business leaders have learned in 2007 that employee loyalty is waning as employer commitment begins to weaken. The generational shift in ownership in small businesses and the retirement rush is the corporate environment has begun and will accelerate in 2008. Economic trends are being characterized by shorter job tenures, changing generational values, scarce talent, and a surplus of vacant positions.
Statistically it is well documented that these trends are real. These trends are affecting all levels within an organization and we need to focus on the acquisition of talent, identification and development of leaders within an organization, and the retention of good employees. Survey after survey demonstrates that most businesses believe there is a current shortage of quality leadership talent in the workforce and they measure personality or behavioral styles when identifying future leaders. It is also well documented that most companies have not implemented an adequate leadership development plan and not focused on the emotional intelligence of the future leader.
The real concern for me is that most companies still do not realize that their people offer them the most competitive advantage in any economic climate.
First, it is important that you do not let the business weatherpersons scare you into a cost-cutting frenzy in that areas of business that means the most to your employees. Second, leadership and career development cannot be achieved without an effective training and development process. Not a program, but a process! I ask you to be innovative in the selection of your tools and products for this process and of course, make sure they are cost – effective but most importantly, produce the desired results or behavioral change that your company needs to be more competitive in 2008. Don’t let the forecasters scare you into cutting the processes that will mean the difference for your future.

Innovative Leadership offers training and development for all levels of your employees. Executive Coaching, Manager Training, and even Customer Service. Get more competitive and make a difference with these programs and processes. Contact us to get started today!

Monday, January 14, 2008

HR Needs to Step Up to the Plate!

It is well documented that most companies have a formal strategic-planning process but don’t use it to make many of their most important decisions. Less than half of the respondents of a recent survey demonstrated that they are satisfied with their company’s approach to making strategic decisions. It has also been demonstrated that greater satisfaction could come from improving the company’s ability to align their people with their strategic plan and from monitoring progress against the plan.

So what are we doing wrong? Are we not looking at our current methodology for both the creation of the plan and the implementation of the needed actions? The missing link is usually found within the implementation or monitoring component. It is projected that 65% of the components of most plans never even get implemented. Is it because we aren’t willing to put the time and energy into the implementation process or we don’t consider it a high priority?

Strategic Planning is critical to the continued success of any organization yet most employees feel that critical decision-making is left to a select few. The two top suggestions for improving the company’s approach to strategic development are: improve the alignment with the strategic plan and develop better methods to monitor progress against the plan.

Surveys have also demonstrated that executive concerns about executing and aligning strategy are likely exacerbated by a perceived lack of integration between the company’s strategic-planning group and its human resource group. When asked to consider strategic planning’s integration with several corporate functions, respondents in a nationwide survey ranked HR as second-to-last in terms of degree of integration. Respondents who were dissatisfied with their company’s strategic planning see the least integration.

Isn’t it time that HR steps up to the plate and take the integration of strategy and people seriously? What does your Strategic Development Process look like? Who is willing to hold people accountable for the success of the plan? It sure sounds like HR or anyone else for that matter is not willing to focus on the outcome. It seems to me that we should all take time off and read the “Five Dysfunctions of a Team” by Patrick Lencioni. It talks about trust, conflict, commitment, accountability, and results……five things that we just seem like we don’t want to address. It sounds like no one is willing to stick around to see the outcome.