Monday, March 24, 2008

Gloom in the Workplace

Generational diversity is a not subject in the HR community and we all realize that in not the too distant future, we will have five generations in the workplace. Leadership IQ, a Washington DC based training company polled over 11,000 employees in the United States and found that all generations expressed some dissatisfaction. Furthermore, they note that the rate of disconnect was almost directly related to age. The older worker was the most satisfied and the younger generations expressed the lowest satisfaction rate.

The survey asked a variety of questions relative to the workplace and the management style being presented today. The title of the article was “Workplace Gloom is Universal” and appeared in the February issues of Training and Development by staff writer, Michael Laff.

We have focused our training and development course, programs, and processes on mid-level management and we also believe that many managers are not learning the intangible skills necessary to manage a staff. Most employees want feedback in a timely fashion and they want to know exactly where they stand if relation to their peers in terms of performance and productivity. Keeping the workforce content is not a priority in most organizations today. Competition, economic conditions, cost of materials and supplies, healthcare benefits and more are keeping us all very “short-sighted” with our employees. It appears that the younger generation craves praise and become frustrated easily. Don’t we all?

People skills have been lost in history. They obviously haven’t been passed down through the generations. It must be because the older generation has accommodated to the “lack of praise” in the workplace and is no longer offering that commodity. When will we realize that we must continue to motivate our employees and keep them engaged in the strategy and development of our company? If we don’t, they will continue to move on until another company does just that. How many jobs do we expect them to have by the time they are thirty five?

We need to start training our managers or that figure will be in double digits.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Leadership and Dysfunctional Behaviors


I have always related leadership to being influential in the workplace. Being able to influence the culture of an organization or being able to compliment the core competencies of an organization have always been integral components of a successful leader. I was intrigued by an article in the February issue of Training and Development that reported that 90% of leaders say dysfunctional behaviors have become acceptable in the workplace and the consequences that have resulted from this bad behavior are lower employee satisfaction, lower productivity, and decreased quality. Our organization focuses on the healthcare marketplace and we find that dysfunctional behaviors play a major role in decreased quality and lower productivity. Both patience and employee satisfaction is determined by those factors.

Is it because we don’t consider dysfunctional behavior poor performance? Inappropriate behavior in the workplace is destructive and must be considered a performance issue.
We should focus on the behavioral issues within an organization and make sure that they are addressed by our performance management system. According to a most recent survey completed by Joseph Glenny, A Provo-Utah based author and management consultant, “finger pointing” or shifting blame, gossiping, and creating territorial borders and boundaries are three of the most destructive behaviors in the workplace today. It also noted that 64% of leaders do very little or nothing to change these behaviors.

It appears that the leaders today are fearful toward addressing the issues because of the consequences…whatever they may be. Many leaders turn to HR or Training and ask them to sprinkle “magical dust” over the situation and expect instantaneous results from the training department or vendors.

Changing behavior is a process and it requires implementation of more than just “dust”. It requires expectations in the workplace from the top down. The leadership team and their management team must define what behaviors they would like to see while stating emphatically those behaviors that will no longer be tolerated. The Performance Management system must focus on the interpersonal side of managing and believe it or not, these behavioral changes can be measured. It appears that the influential leaders of today aren’t willing to view behavior in the same light as they do performance. Maybe we should redefine leadership and not associate it with influence. It obviously is not working!

Monday, March 3, 2008

Lunch N Learn

The foundation of personal and professional success lies in understanding yourself, understanding others, and realizing the impact of your personal behavior on the people around you. Innovative Leadership is inviting you for the first of their Lunch n’ Learn series, Understanding Dimensions of Behavior.

This complimentary mini-workshop on March 31st from 12 -1pm is designed to provide you with a better understanding of yourself and others so that you can improve communications and build more effective relationships. Register Now

Each month Innovative Leadership will have a free Lunch n Learn seminar on pressing business issues. Upcoming seminars will include Relationship Selling, Hiring and Selection and much more.

Innovative Leadership is a performance improvement company that provides solutions for today's business challenges. They offer unique programs, products and processes that can be customized to fit the specific needs of your company. Innovative Leadership has over thirty years of management, training, sales and marketing experience with Fortune 500 companies, mid-size companies, and small businesses including professional practices. Their staff includes certified facilitators, coaches, and financially oriented business consultants.

Visit for more information or call 609.390.2830