Wednesday, December 30, 2009

10 Business reSolutions for 2010

  1. Conduct a SWOT Analysis for 2009 and analyze your sales, operations, people, and financial commitments.
  2. Conduct a Customer Satisfaction Survey to define benchmarks in your core competencies
  3. Develop a Strategic or Business Plan for 2010.
  4. Meet quarterly with your professional advisors (Accounting, Legal, Business Consultant, Financial Planner, etc.) to review progress and determine action plans.
  5. Focus your energies on your talented people
  6. Complete a course or take a workshop for self-improvement and/or business development
  7. Focus on your strengths, the strengths of your people, and your processes.
  8. Prioritize your tasks and make sure others do as well.
  9. Remember that time management is personal management.
  10. Celebrate success; offer praise and recognition to your top producers.
By Richard Hohmann, VP of Innovative Leadership
Business Consulting - Leadership/Management Development, Strategic Planning and more

10 HR Resolutions for 2010

  1. Conduct an HR Self-Audit on your department.
  2. Create a Leadership Development Strategy
  3. Build better relationships with other departments
  4. Establish and evaluate your Training Programs in regard to Level (Kirkpatrick) achieved.
  5. Revitalize your Employee Orientation Program (Onboarding)
  6. Focus on retaining great employees
  7. Become more goal and strategic-oriented
  8. Start using metrics to demonstrate the improvement in the profitability resulting from your department.
  9. Conduct Organizational Needs and Employee Satisfaction Surveys to define baselines and benchmarks
  10. Make sure your compensation plan compliments your performance management process
By Richard Hohmann, VP of Innovative Leadership
HR Services by Innovative Leadership

10 Management reSOLUTIONS for 2010

  1. Make sure the business strategy is understood and clear to all employees
  2. Make sure the employees understand how their value and job roles contribute to the overall success of the business
  3. Improve your communication with employees
  4. Help people reach their potential through coaching and/or mentoring
  5. Make sure you are consistent in your message and actions
  6. Focus yourself and all the employees on the “High Payoff Activities”
  7. Become more goal and results-oriented
  8. Understand that you are responsible for employee engagement.
  9. Focus your energies on people development and career enhancement
  10. Understand that the tools of accountability (data, metrics, analysis, assessments, and performance evaluations) are neutral and need to become the tools that high achievers use to understand and improve performance.
By Richard Hohmann, VP of Innovative Leadership
Making of an Effective Manager Course 2010

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Critical Business Success Factor

Many experts feel that even though every company is different, it is important for each to develop a succession plan that includes hiring from within, conducting a developmental opportunity or audition, providing a defined plan with time lines for anyone to assume a leadership responsibility, and disclosing the process or succession plan to the shareholders.

Most succession plans do not take into consideration that different environments require different leadership competencies or skills. So, if we narrow our development process than we may never have the right person ready to assume the leadership role in any company. Companies need to consider what most professional sports teams do as a major component for success and that is a strong bench. Most championship teams, whether it be in basketball, baseball, or even football have a great bench or understudy for their key positions. Companies, like professional sports teams, must have a strong bench of candidates who can lead or “step up to the plate” under a variety of scenarios.

Many companies use different forms of people development processes. Some companies call them Leadership Academies or Institutes, and/or High Potential Candidate Schools. Despite the different names, the end result is the same: development of people toward a higher level. As a business owner, you need to provide a constant flow of internal talent but you also must be aware that when people don’t get the higher position, they do have a tendency to leave the organization so the funnel better continue to be adequately filled at all times.

It is also important for companies to deliver some kind of transparency to their shareholders, customers, and internal personnel. The ideal succession plan should minimize uncertainty, which is not a bad thing in this economic climate, and continue to promote the “real” culture of the company. The depth of the company’s disclosure should be predicated by the need at the time and situational circumstances.

Also, many experts believe that the succession plan must take into consideration the corporate culture to the extent that every company should have a corporate culture that transcends the exit of any leader or person. Most companies do not really know what they smell, taste, and feel like to their internal and external customers. The best way to determine the current culture and the culture employees want is to conduct an Organizational Needs Inventory (ONI) assessment but most companies don’t do them.

So, succession planning is just a more formalized name that can be defined as a process to help companies develop their people to meet their future needs.It certainly sounds like it is time for a Leadership Program! Let's get started!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Avoid Being the Black Cloud of the Office

AND Show Your Positive Side
If your boss had to characterize your attitude, would you be described as a ray of sunshine or a black cloud? Some employees don't realize that they unintentionally project negativity. To become the employee that the boss can't wait to see in the morning, take these steps:

  1. Suggest Don't Complain - If you disagree with a new procedure or rule, offer alternatives and solutions not recrimination and a bad attitude
  2. Air Problems in Private - Don't challenge your boss in front of co-workers or other managers.
  3. Learn To Pick Your Battles - There are times when it's best to keep quiet and do what you are told. Not every battle is worth fighting. Winning can cost you more in the end than the battle was worth.
  4. Take Responsibility for Your Mistakes - Show your maturity by admitting when you are wrong.
  5. Be a Team Player - Give your boss positive information about co-workers or jobs well done.

- Adapted from "Tips for Communicating Effectively with Your Boss"

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Let It Be...Let It Be

Let it Be was in fact the last Beatles album released in 1970 and the song was written by Paul McCartney which was inspired by his mother. I read a recent article that authored by Michael O’Brien titled, “Tardiness is on the Rise” and was published online by LRP Publications.

That exact song title came to me immediately upon starting to read the article, but as I continued to read on, the content contained in the article got my juices flowing.

It was noted in an earlier survey that more than 1 in 5 workers say they arrive late to work at least once a week and another 10% say they are late at least twice a week.

Some people believe that the rise in tardiness is directly related to the economic times and is more of an employee defense mechanism. People are now relating tardiness to specific behavioral patterns normally associated with procrastination. Behavioral change is possible and can be accomplished in good or bad economic times.

Other experts think the reason for tardiness has more to do with demographics as opposed to individual behavioral styles and the climate of the economy. Billy G. Blair, President and CEO of Change Strategists, Inc., a Los Angeles-based consultancy, and author of All the Moving Parts: Organizational Change Management says that the increase in lateness may correspond to an increase in the number of “millennials” in the workplace. She also says the “factory model” of being in a certain place at a certain time and predetermined duration is outdated. The “factory model” may be outdated but in many businesses today, coverage remains an important responsibility for the worker. Flex-time may help support the needs of the employer and the worker but random flex-time rarely provides a viable resolution for both.

Wake up! Work does not necessarily begin wherever you are, and the customer is not always available at the times you would like them to be. It just might be that in some workplaces today, consistency is more important than flexibility. Focus your culture on the customer, not the millennial. Oh, well, I guess I should Let it Be!

Article written by Richard J. Hohmann Jr., SeniorInnovative Leadership, a performance improvement company that integrates business consultation, training and development, and coaching with Leadership and Strategic/Forward Thinking to enhance organizational effectiveness and people development. Richard is a member of the Collaboration Team for Leadership Management International and a strategic partner with the accounting firm of Fitzpatrick, Bongiovanni, & Kelly, PC. For more information visit Business and Management Consultant for

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Communication Process to Drive Growth

Most companies are focused today on driving growth, as I’m sure you are with your business. Many don’t realize that to drive growth you have to start at the beginning with interviewing the candidate and end it with the exit interview or retirement dinner.

Your company needs to focus on hiring the people that will perform better and stay longer. Then, you must identify the high achievers at a very early point in their careers and the retention of these high achievers must be considered paramount to the organization. How do you do this? Employee retention starts with the on-boarding process or orientation. This is best opportunity to start the communication line, explaining the business strategy of the organization and how their role and responsibility provides value to that equation. Communication is the key ingredient for any leadership team to articulate where the company is heading and how they plan to get there. This is the best time to align your employees appropriately but most companies do not spend the time to do such.

The next step in the process is make sure the capabilities of your people can support your company’s strategy and create a competitive advantage; a slight edge as we like to call it. Last but not least, we have to hold our people accountable and in most cases we assign that role to our middle management team. It is their responsibility to structure reporting relationships and evaluate individual performance to ensure the desired business results. They are the ones that execute the strategy.

Companies need to construct a training and development process that enhances communication between the employee and management, improves individual productivity, enhances performance and makes a more effective organization that achieves its revenue goals. Human Resource executives must take responsibility for administering this training process and utilize this process to shorten the learning curve and make employees much more productive and engaged earlier. This will allow companies to achieve sustained growth during these difficult economic times.

Innovative Leadership helps companies connect their people success strategies with their business objectives to drive growth. It's time to get that process into place, we can help.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Do you have the right focus?

It seems like the HR professional must continue the fight for training and development since it does not appear that the CEO has realized the value of training to the company or organization.

Companies focus on profits, stock prices, and performance, but not on employees. How do we forget to see the value in our people, particularly our key employees, when it comes to celebrating our business outcomes? Studies have shown that companies that invest more heavily in training and development have been more successful in achieving their defined outcomes.

Many of the recent studies have concluded that a more engaged workforce provides enhanced performance and improved productivity. Companies with a more engaged workforce seldom have morale issues. “In the 21st century, our natural resource is our people – and their potential is untapped and vast. Skills will unlock that potential.” (Leitch Review, December 2006) Even with the economic climate of the past year or two, it has been demonstrated that training expenditures were a strong predictor of stock prices.

So where is the hidden agenda? Is any CEO really interested in the productivity and developing the potential of their people or is the real objective of only reducing cost associated with people including the people themselves. I have seen a decrease in revenue of less than 10%, yet the company has reduced its labor forces by almost 30%.

Training the management of any organization will certainly prove to make the organization more effective. People are looking for advancement and an opportunity to develop skills to assist with their upward mobility. They want feedback immediately from their supervisor and they want to work in an environment that supports their development. The social culture that is presented today by companies is very important to the millennial generation. Many believe that a budget for employee development indicates whether a company is in it for the long haul or not.

If we expect to retain our top producers in the management positions, we better make sure that they have the skills and competencies to work with four generations of workers. This ensures that knowledge is shared, cross-training is completed and the work is getting done in a timely fashion. We need to teach our management team that communication is the key to people success and that success can only be achieved if we develop people’s potential and focus on productivity and performance, and not just trying to reduce costs. Reducing training budgets can be detrimental.

We are fortunate that the economy has kept the Baby Boomers in the workforce but how long will that last? It looks like we will be left with an untrained workforce that doesn’t like to communicate with others. It sure sounds like it might not be the best time to be in a management position.

Come on Mr. CEO; listen to your People Developer. Investing in your management team will produce an improved bottom line. If you don’t believe that training and development can affect the bottom line, just look at how the reduction in their training budget prepared Wachovia for the merger with Wells Fargo. Their training budget was reduced by over 50% and their stock fell as much as 95% before the bank finally agreed to the merge. Helping people reach their potential, coupled with effective processes and procedures can certainly affect the effectiveness of the organization.

The time to train is now and please pass this on to the decision makers in your company!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Give Foolproof Instructions

When staffers follow instructions correctly the first time, their productivity soars and your frustration level drops! Follow these steps to help employees get it right every time:
  • Verify Verbal Instructions. When you assign a task, ask the staffer to write it down and watch as the person takes notes. If you speak with someone by phone, ask the person to read back the instructions. That guarantees the person understood what you want done.
  • Create Deadlines. Thasks without deadlines never get done. When you assign a task, state the specific date and time you need it by. That creates a sense of urgency.
  • Allow for a margin of error. Things don'e always go as planned, so build in a little lead time. If your boss needs the report by Friday, tell your staff that you'll need the work Wednesday afternoon.

- Adapted from "Put It in Writing," Jeffery J. Mayer,

Does something else work for you?
Please - Comment and share!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

When will we understand?

I conducted an informal survey and found that most managers do not understand what their most important function is at work. Most managers feel that their most important function is to provide revenue, reduce costs or maintain margins. They do not realize that those things come from the results being produced by the organization through its people and processes not through anything else. Those metrics usually reflect the effectiveness of the organization.

So what makes an organization effective? Plain and simple; when a company focuses on it’s people and there is enhanced performance and improved productivity. In an article that I recently read, it was noted that in the software development industry, turnover rates approached 20%. Yet one company is that industry exhibited less than a 5% turnover! Imagine the savings to the company in terms of time saved in recruiting, training, and just plain managing.

We continue to find that middle management is most important ingredient to preserve good to great employees. First, an employee’s boss is the company to them and they will leave if they don’t receive positive feedback from the boss. Secondly, positive feedback must be timely. Most managers don’t realize that their role must be focused on their people and their performance is a direct reflection of their people’s success. People need to be engaged and if they aren’t engaged, they move on to another job. People will not stay in a job where engagement is not fulfilled, period. So what are you doing about it?

Your primary role as a manager is the development of your people. The CEO, President, HR Professional, and any decision maker in the company must realize that management training is the most important ingredient they can provide because the managers’ tasks revolve around making sure their people are well served and they understand the value of their work. If you don’t have an engaged workforce, then you have a workforce with their eyes on the door. Most managers do not exhibit good interpersonal skills with their staff but companies still are not responding to their training needs.

Please forward this article to back up the need for training.

Monday, August 17, 2009

The Art of Delegation

According to most management publications, the primary responsibility of the manager is to get work done through other people. Too many times, the art of delegation is not looked upon as a most positive experience. It is considered “dumping” by many, and the reason for this attitude by the employee is the method in which the delegated assignment is presented. As a good chef would say, “it is all in the presentation”. In other words, the key to delegation is communication and training.

Practicing effective delegation is what makes delegation an art as opposed to a science. It is the most important if not the most effective technique for getting work done through other people. Hence the definition of effective delegation is the act of giving someone else the responsibility and authority to carry out an assignment or to represent you or your organization in a specific role. Some people expand the definition to include the sharing of responsibilities with others in the company where it is appropriate and logical.

It is important that you, the manager, has the right attitude in delegating. You must be willing to spend the time training people. You must remove the fear that often presents itself when you train someone to do exactly what you do. The fear that you will be replaced.

The truth is that effective delegation leads to opportunities for you, as well as your people. Most managers fail to monitor delegation because they don’t realize the importance of delegation in terms of the development of their people. The employee is anxiously awaiting direction, and if needed, additional training. People want to feel empowered and delegating brings you an excellent opportunity to do just that! It is important that you make feedback specific to behavior. You must make sure that the person to whom you are delegating takes ownership in terms of accountability and responsibility. Effective leadership generates productivity. The development of your staff can bring pain as well as joy. Delegation is one of the most valuable instruments to help initiate change.

Delegation is a skill that needs to be learned and developed. Most inexperienced managers have the most difficulty in mastering delegation skills. Be patient and as Vince Lombardi says, “Practice. . .Practice. . .Practice!” Success runs on empowerment of people, and empowerment runs on delegation. Looks like it's time to start delegating!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Employees Want Good Management

A recent poll of the employees demonstrated that the most important thing to people at work is good management (36%). The employee also found that the respect of colleagues was very important (26%). Money, benefits, learning skills, and having fun in the workplace were far behind.

Our company, Innovative Leadership, focuses the majority of our training and development programs on the front line supervisor or manager. The roles and responsibilities of any supervisor or manager have changed over the years and it is important for companies to realize that the middle management of their organization is the real “glue” that holds the company together.
  • Management today must learn to focus on the “bigger picture and translate the company’s goals into meaningful steps or action plans.
  • Management must make sure the worker today is both engaged and responsive to change
  • Management must also learn the legal do’s and don’ts of supervising to avoid legal mistakes that can cost them and their companies financial losses and embarrassment.
  • Management must help elevate morale and retain the high achieving worker
  • Management must be good decision-makers and problem solvers to enable them to give the proper direction

Management must also provide a leadership focus. Success must be viewed as a journey and it is the responsibility of management today to demonstrate the skill sets and competencies relating to:
  • Talent Management
  • Strategic Business Development
  • Change Management
  • Productivity and Performance
  • Implementation with measured results
  • Leadership Development

It is important to realize that in today’s workplace, 85% of employees are giving a less than average performance. Management’s primary role in the workplace is the development of people by helping them reach their potential. The most important factor in the workplace today is to engage the worker by providing a better understanding and clear definition of the direction of the company and future strategy.

We need to finally realize that strategy plus people equals success and your middle management team is the one that can ensure that the summation of the two is achieved. Our courses and workshops teach mangers the skill-sets and competencies that compliment the foundation elements to leadership and produce the desired results. We do things differently and the outcome is defined upfront. Call now for more information on our Leadership and Management Development Process at 609.390.2830.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Is anyone still listening?

The confidence from the C-suite to the employee is down in most companies. The conversation is focused on cost containment and expense reductions. Budgets again are being slashed and people are being asked to “do more with less”.

Many companies are discarding the talent that took them to the top. Experts today note that Talent Management is more important than ever but it appears to be falling on deaf ears.

Are you listening?

Changes in the economy are often precursors to changes in the ways we do business. Why are we still focused on everything except what we need to do? We need to retain top talent and develop the future talent for our company needs. The ASTD just published a major report titled, Mission Critical – Keep Learning. This publication demonstrates “How to Communicate the Value of Learning in Difficult Economic Times”. Their publication is calling for all learning professionals to get in involved and make sure they contribute to a successful talent management strategy. The author feels that the ability to get the right people with the right skills into the right jobs in a cost-effective way makes it possible for a company to respond strategically. The publication also goes on to say that the entire organization must make the learning function support the organizations goals. The key decision makers in the organization must see a meaningful relationship between learning initiatives and results. Now there is a thought! Be more effective than just focusing of efficiencies. Isn’t it time to make sure that all programs focused on people development are directly linked to business goals?

Are you still listening?

The next thing is for everyone to realize that our middle management is the “glue that holds the company together”. I just recently read an article in HR Daily Advisor titled, “Top Five Mistakes Leaders Make in Tough Times”. In her opinion, Ellen McDargh,CSP, CPAE, felt that in tough times, leaders become reactive and reactionary, huddle with only the corporate folks, subscribe to the “cut…cut…cut” philosophy, target new clients and customers, and subscribe to the “do more with less”. Middle management is the leader of the majority of the staff. They must focus on being effective and producing the desired results in areas that have been bludgeoned to death by cost containment measures and layoffs.

A recent survey of the American workers demonstrated that “Good Management” is the most important thing that employees want in the workplace. Things that finished far behind “Good Management” included respect of colleagues, money and benefits, learning new skills, and having a fun environment.

Is anyone listening?

We need to make leaders out of every employee but the most important ingredient for business success is the development of the middle manager. Middle management must elevate morale in poor economic times, retain and motivate the high achieving employee, their team is expected to comprehend the “bigger picture” in terms of strategy and recommended plans of action. It is more important for the middle manager to break down the strategy into goals that can be comprehended and implemented by the action of the staff. They need to give direction, monitor performance, discipline the staff, and demonstrate organizational effectiveness by getting results. In addition to all of this, they have to understand that their actions may put them in the same legal liability position as that of their company. That’s quite the responsibility! Shouldn’t they continue to learn how to manage their employees as well as themselves?

I have read article after article on the Benchmarks involved with Human Resources Departments and have not found Mid-level management development as one of the major benchmarks for success. I have heard about the metrics associated with organizational performance, HR service and delivery, employee engagement, voluntary turnover, HR practices, budget management, technology assessment, and more. What is HR and the C-Level doing to continue their company’s success??

Here at Innovative Leadership, we have focused our company on the development of middle level managers and our programs compliment all of the metrics ever associated with a strategically oriented HR Department:

  1. Tools that qualify potential management candidates from the date of hire.
  2. Training and Development Courses that highlight goal-orientation and business results
  3. Provides an organization with the ROI prior to the start of the program
  4. Offers a variety of cost effective platforms including online application.
  5. Course evaluation processes measure the changes in the behaviors and skill-sets associated with high achieving mid-level managers

We do things differently and our results demonstrate just that. Please tell me just one thing . . . Is anybody still listening?

Thursday, July 9, 2009


By Richard Hohmann Redeem 2 Free Assessments from Innovative Leadership

On Monday June 29, 2009, The Supreme Court in a 5-4 decision ruling favored white and Hispanic fire fighters advancing the case for validated testing and assessments in the workplace in America.

In 2003 Lt. Ben Vargas was one of 56 New Haven, Conn. Fireman who passed the test for promotion to Captain of whom 15 were black or Hispanic. When the city discovered that only two out of the 56 were likely to be immediately promoted (due to lack of job openings) the city threw out the test for fear of being sued by minority candidates who might allege discrimination.

However, 17 white firefighters plus Vargas (a total of 18 firefighters) filed suit against the city for throwing out the test. The Supreme Court has now ruled in behalf of the 18 who filed suit against the city for throwing out the test . This ruling delivered the message that rejecting employment test results because of the lack of minority candidates eligible for promotion violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Justice Anthony M. Kennedy wrote for the majority, “Fear of Litigation alone cannot justify an employer’s reliance on race to the detriment of individuals who passed the examinations and qualified for promotions.”

The 18 plaintiffs in the case studied intensively for the test, giving up second jobs and missing family celebrations. The lead plaintiff, Frank Ricci was dyslexic and had studied 8 to 13 hours a day, and had hired an acquaintance to tape-record the study materials for him.

In the case before the court, Ricci v. Stephano, No. 07-1428, the majority said there is no evidence, let alone strong evidence, of any problem with the tests. With this ruling, the Supreme Court has in reality sent a variety of messages to employers in both the public and private sector:

When using a validated job related test that has proven to be nonbiased by race and sex
that test or assessment may legally discriminate against minority groups who do not have the qualifications for the job. In this case black fireman who took the test failed to learn the necessary material to pass the test.

Would we allow Doctors to practice medicine who do not pass the medical exam? Lawyers who don’t pass the bar exam to practice law? or CPA’s who haven’t passed the CPA exam to offer their services as a CPA---Obviously the answer “NO”. Employers have the right to require people to be qualified for the jobs they are hiring them for or promoting them into and the Supreme Court has just upheld that right.

In this case the Supreme Court sent a clear message that being in a minority group who failed a validated job related test is not an acceptable basis to file a discrimination complaint.

The Supreme Court Decision further sent a message to employers that job related validated tests and assessments are usable and defensible in both the hiring and promotional processes and are clearly some of the most validateable parts of an employers hiring or promotional process as a result of the clear cut rules established for validation in the Uniform Employment Guidelines published in the Federal Register in 1979.

This Supreme Court Decision is a job win for companies like Innovative Leadership and its Achiever Series of Assessment Instruments. (, The Achiever Series are job related assessments that has been repeatedly proven to be validated and nondiscriminatory by race, color or sex which does identify individuals who do not fit the requirements of the job. The Achiever is now America’s premier job-related assessment instrument for use in both applicant selection and people development processes. There as never been an adverse finding, or settlement out of court, against any employer for its usage. Information on the validation of the Achiever and validation of tests and assessments in general and their optimum usage is available at

Please call for more information on America’s Premier Assessment Instruments distributed by Innovative Leadership at 609.390.2830 or contact us here:

Richard Hohmann is the senior consultant/Vice President for Innovative Leadership of the Delaware Valley, LLC. He is a graduate of the Ohio State University and has over thirty years of Leadership and Management Development experience. His focus is on the effectiveness of the organization and the development of their people to enhance performance and improve productivity. He teaches managers and leaders to know what it takes to be successful and then uses a defined plan to teach them how to do it until they succeed. He has written numerous articles for national publications and speaks at many association meetings nationwide. He is very involved with his community organizations and professional affiliations.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

I'm an employer! I've got the upper hand, why would I need a pre-hire assessment?

With Innovative Leadership's Pre-Hire Assessments you gain an understanding of an employee's potential, their attitude towards leadership, and their potential for unacceptable behavior.

Our various pre-hire assessments, Before You Hire and The Achiever™ Series, guide you through the hiring process while cutting costs associated with hiring, selection, and retention.

Featured Pre-Hire Assessment:
The Achiever™
The Achiever combines cognitive and personality scales to provide a well-rounded picture of your potential employee. This assessment allows you to maximize the fit between employment demands and the abilities, aptitudes, and personality of the potential employee. More Info

Assessing talent is not impossible....with the right tools it can be done with measured results. Interested? or Questions? Contact Us

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

8 Ways to Keep Morale High

Adapted from "Pathways and pitfalls to giving Personal Recognition and Appreciation"

No matter how dazzling your recognition program, in the end employee morale depends largely on how skilled you are at making the staff feel appreciated. Keep in might these recognition rules:
  1. Be Democratic. Don't restrict praise to bona fide successes. You should also appreciate effort - innovative ideas that fall flat or good tries that fall short. People should know it's ok to fail as long as they give their best. And be democratic in choosing whom to praise as well as what to praise. The receptionist, cleanup crew, and other support staff may not be moneymakers but they're an essential part of a well-run operation.
  2. Be Nit picky. Dramatic success's are great but they're usually the result of the tiny, incremental things workers do each day. Don't wait for the obvious. Take note of the small victories that lead to the big wins.
  3. Be Quick. Don't delay in praising employees fir a job well done. You not only want to make workers feel good about themselves, but you also want to reinforce their positive behavior. That's easier to do when the incident is fresh in an employee's mind.
  4. Be Public. Praise done right doesn't only reinforce the behavior and boost morale of the employee involved, it also raises the performance bar and creates a positive environment for everyone else.
  5. Be Specific. Make sure workers understand exactly what they did right. Rather than saying "Good job!" say "You handled that irate customer beautifully." By being specific you prompt workers to make note of their brilliance for future reference.
  6. Be Brief. Although you want to highlight positive behaviors, it's not necessary to turn a pat on the back into a dissertation on, say, customer service. Let workers enjoy their victory and save the blow-by-blow for your next staff meeting.
  7. Be Solicitous. Go beyond providing moral support by asking if there's anything you can do to help workers continue to perform to their full potential. Offering assistance is especially important when praising strong effort that proved unsuccessful.
  8. Be Reflective. After offering your on-the-spot praise, review the episode and ask yourself whether you could have handled the moment even better. Appreciation isn't as effective when, for instance, a manager praises workers then takes credit for their accomplishments with senior managers. To be most effective, praise should reflect the culture of the department or organization.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Referrals Top Hiring Tools

Coming into the big hiring season for the beach resorts on the east coast I thought I would share this article. I thought it would be interesting to some of you. Enjoy! - Rich

Recruiters Cite Referrals as Top Hiring Tool
Workforce Management
Article written by Gina Ruiz

Seventy five percent of respondents in a survey conducted by ERE Media said employee referral programs are effective or very effective tools in recruiting.

Currently, less than one-third of hires actually come from employee referrals, however fifty percent of the respondents say they will increase spending on referral programs to further tap into the benefits the programs offer as recruitment tools.

Another tool that received overall positive marks for recruitment was Job Boards. About 50% of the respondents found them to be effective tools for recruitment, while they found print advertising and job fairs less effective. The jury appears still out on social networking sites but most companies do not spend excessive amounts in this area.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Replacing an Executive can Cost You

Coaching is the one component of employee retention that is most overlooked and underused. The cost of replacing a high level executive now approaches almost 50% of their salary, not including any additional compensation packages. In other words, to replace a $200K salaried executive it will cost you $100K. Coaching for Performance costs for that same executive costs a company approximately $9-$12k per year. As reported in the article, “Can Coaching Help Your Business” ( (02/24/09), investing in executive leadership development can bring about a positive impact on an organization when it is particularly needed. Your under performing executives or other personnel in key roles can benefit from working with a one on one coach.

Innovative Leadership’s coaching program provides certified coaches who have extensive management experience and can relate to the pressures being placed on your leadership in these tough economic times. Our coaches use a unique process to get results while coupling the achievement with enhancing leadership skill-sets by incorporating Leadership Training into the one-on-one equation. We work with your leaders to develop their leadership competencies and skill-sets to compliment their decision-making abilities, and interpersonal responsiveness to their board and management team, while getting them to focus on the metrics that make a difference. Achievement is the result of effective planning and the proper implementation of a plan while monitoring the progress so that course corrections can be made along the way. Our Coaches directly work with you to design the plan, implement the strategy, formulate the metrics for success, and work with you to monitor the results.

You’re losing valuable money when an executive is replaced; stop this vicious circle with Coaching and Training. It really is priceless.

Friday, April 17, 2009

HR is Missing a Great Opportunity

Isn’t it about time that HR Managers change the hiring and selection event to a process that can provide a significant return on investment for their company?
Now, the question is what is the best way to start developing a process?

These 5 points will help guide you to a well planned out process.
1. Evaluate each job position and get familiar with the roles and responsibilities associated with the position. Know the skill sets and behaviors that need to be exhibited on a daily basis for someone to exhibit outstanding performance in that position.

2. Select the Assessment instrument or series of instruments that supports your needs. Assessment instruments are not usually a one-size fits all type of product. When selecting, make sure that it is appropriate for the company’s needs and will produce the necessary ROI.

3. Develop a process that provides consistency in application, scoring,
utilization, monitoring, and results.

4. Develop the metrics that “matters most” to the organization and provides the desired results

5. Learn to evaluate the results and outcomes and use the data to drive improvements in the process and the ROI.

One of the greatest challenges for all HR professionals is to create a partnership with the CEO that drives productivity and performance to align HR with the business strategy. The implementation of a cost-effective hiring and selection process that can also contribute dramatically to the bottom line might just be the best way to enhance that relationship.
View Available Assessment Tools

Leadership Newsletter (April Issue) by Innovative Leadership
Richard Hohmann is a management consultant who focuses on people development and organizational effectiveness using consultation, training and development including the use of assessment instruments, and coaching. He is a partner of Innovative Leadership of the Delaware Valley, LLC. More information and contact information can be found at

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Coaching For Results

In a most recent survey, thousands of employees were asked “what they planned to do differently in 2009?” and here are the results:
  • Most will be focusing on themselves and trying to “get fitter” (53%)
  • Most will be scheduling more time with family and friends (24%)
  • Many will be looking for new employment opportunities (13%)
  • Some will try to work harder (6%)
  • And the minority will do nothing differently in 2008 (4%)

I can visualize that every executive, manager, supervisor or employee will be getting up earlier and rushing to the gym to knock of the weight and trying to tone up for the “bikini” season, then rushing off to work to give everyone the appearance that they are working harder than they did last year even though some of that energy will be spent looking for new employment opportunities, and then scurrying home to have dinner with the family and bathe the children, then hop in bed by 9 to get ready for the next day. WOW!

It really sounds and feels stressful to me. How can someone do all that and not get stressed out.

Hiring a Coach will help you formulate a “game plan” together that will enable you to reach your goals in a shorter period of time without as much stress.

Innovative Leadership Coaches for Results!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Evaluate Talent from Day One

Where is Your Focus? on Your People or on Your Process?

In a recent article in the Investor’s Business Daily, Kevin Harlin points out that Employment consulting firms say it is vital to track and nurture promising leadership candidates even though the economy is sluggish. Steve Krupp, partner and leader of the executive talent management practice at Delta Organization & Leadership, asserts that if a company fails to engage and communicate its top performers, they might be inclined to depart.

Rather than focusing on your processes, focus on your people. They are your biggest asset. Remember that turnover can cost you double of just one employee’s salary. A survey from Delta found that most U.S. companies fail to monitor their best performers, even fewer communicate with these employees, and few top executives support such initiatives.

PPG Industries, a global glass, paint, and chemical firm, has been tracking its best employees for about a decade. Roughly 30 percent of workers are regarded as top talent, and just 1 percent is deemed suitable for the CEO position. Identified employees get first priority for training, special projects, and responsibilities. Executives also meet with these employees from time to time at informal settings like breakfast or lunch. Global business software firm SAP provides potential leaders with six-month fellowships in another division, typically in a different location, to ensure that these employees have adequate insight into the company.

The above synopsis of the article that appeared in Investor’s Business Daily demonstrates the need to evaluate talent from the first day of hire in terms of recognizing potential and people development as the priority for any organization. I really question whether companies today are focused on their future leadership and understand the need to develop people’s potential.
Innovative Leadership offers an Assessment Process called the Achiever Series that can assist you with people development and also compliment certain aspects of succession planning, downsizing or transformation.

We are a company that is focused on helping companies develop their potential of their people that will result in organizational effectiveness. Please call us at your convenience to discuss our Assessment Processes that can make the difference in the future of your company at 609.390.2830.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Critical Success Factor

Many experts feel that even though every company is different, it is important for each to develop a succession plan that includes hiring from within, conducting a developmental opportunity or audition, providing a defined plan with time lines for anyone to assume a leadership responsibility, and disclosing the process or succession plan to the shareholders.

Most succession plans do not take into consideration that different environments require different leadership competencies or skills. If we narrow our development process than we may never have the right person ready to assume the leadership role in any company. Companies need to consider what most professional sports teams do as a major component for success and that is a strong bench. Most of you championship teams, whether it be in basketball, baseball, or even football have had a great bench or understudy for their key positions. Companies, like professional sports teams, must have a strong bench of candidates who can lead or “step up to the plate” under a variety of scenarios.

Many companies use different forms of people development processes. Some companies call them Leadership Academies or Institutes, and/or High Potential Candidate Schools. Despite the different names, the end result is the same: development of people toward a higher level. As a business owner, we need to provide a constant flow of internal talent but we also must be aware that when people don’t get the higher position, they do have a tendency to leave the organization so the funnel better continue to be adequately filled at all times.

It is also important for companies to deliver some kind of transparency to their shareholders, customers, and internal personnel. The ideal succession plan should minimize uncertainty, which isn’t a bad thing in this economic climate, and continue to promote the “real” culture of the company. The depth of the company’s disclosure should be predicated by the need at the time and situational circumstances.

Also, many experts believe that the succession plan must take into consideration the corporate culture to the extent that every company should have a corporate culture that transcends the exit of any leader or person. Most companies do not really know what they smell, taste, and feel like to their internal and external customers. The best way to determine the current culture and the culture employees want is to conduct an Organizational Needs Inventory (ONI) but most companies don’t do them.

So, succession planning is just a more formalized name that can be defined as a process to help companies develop their people to meet their future needs.

It certainly sounds like it is time for a Leadership Program…. Let’s go!

Innovative Leadership has all of the tools for your succession plan, including Leadership Development, Organizational Needs Inventory, Assessment Tools, and more. Please call us at 609-290-2830 to set up and appointment or contact us here

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Your Most Valuable Resource

Human Resource Managers hopefully are putting into place strategies and programs designed to resolve some of the issues associated with the economic crisis and are looking for ways to reduce costs associated with their workforce. We are seeing layoffs, hiring freezes, delayed pay or merit raises, and reductions in benefit expenses as the key areas of attack.

Along with reducing personnel-related costs, other factors are being affected including employee morale, innovation, new product releases, inventory control, etc. These factors often hasten the departure of our high performers and reduce the customer service levels.

The leadership of your organization must realize that employee performance and productivity is the key to success and it will drive business performance. Many believe that by improving individual performance and productivity will allow the top performers to rise to the top and allow companies to weed out the poor or non-productive employees.
Focusing on developing people is a real need for any company that wants to retain and develop its high performers and sustain growth in these poor economic conditions.

Human resources managers must focus on aligning the people with the strategic development process of the business and allow people to stretch toward their potential. HR has to realize that they must view talent or their people as the strategic resource that help the company reach its goals. It is time that Human Resource Managers understand that all personnel must be trained to understand the Total Leader® Process. The future of any organization is with its most valuable resource, its people. The executive team members of all companies need to exhibit the leadership skills and competencies that will sustain their company’s growth for future years.

Isn’t it time for you to focus on your strengths and not the weaknesses of your company and its people. People Development processes can directly affect the performance of you company so do something now!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

What is Leadership?

  • Leadership is being responsible.
  • People expect more accountability and transparency from its leaders
  • Leaders must be authentic and responsible
  • Leaders must be inspire people to accept and implement company strategy
  • Leaders consider how their decisions impact society as a whole
  • Leaders need to show people how to act responsibly.
  • Leaders should adopt missions and visions that espouse social themes and values
  • Leaders must combine social responsibility with company goals to help intellectually stimulate others, engaging them in the company’s plan
  • Leaders must allow employees to participate in the decision-making process
  • Leaders must give employees flexibility by allowing them to choose how to get something done.
  • Leadership welcomes being held accountable.
  • Leaders empower themselves to get things done.
  • Leaders must provide clarity with their workplace expectations
  • Leaders must demonstrate why employees need to own any type of change initiative.
  • Leaders must teach people how to learn.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

5 Keys to Successful Talent Management

Recruiting for Stars not Duds

The old saying is that you get what you pay for. I feel that you get what you prepare for.
Recruiting top talent is a full time position that requires patience, tenacity, and practice. I like many others consider talent recruitment the skill that separates the good companies from the bad companies. You must hire right to get the right outcome. People plus process equals achievement and you can’t get the end results without the other. Here are five tips to help you recruit the “best”:

1. Anticipate the need – always be hunting for talent even when you have no job openings. We used to call it “anticipatory interviewing” and our management team made us interview two candidates a quarter when we had not available openings. The company wanted the Talent funnel full for the time when we needed to open the spigot.

2. Prepare for the Interview before you even schedule the candidates. Create an interviewing process that will work with every position in the company. Spend the time to create a Win-Win, No Lose hiring tool.

3. Use assessments to confirm the talent and start their development. Use assessments to measure what is needed in the position and allows benchmarking by position for future development and succession planning

4. Focus on your competitors and realize that most of the talent is employed and working for someone else. If you want specific skills, behaviors, and people with a positude, then make sure you look for them in all the right places. Use the five business card recruitment technique and then make sure you follow-up and stay in touch with your recruits.

5. Don’t hire the borderlines……if we are referring to our “gut feeling” or “flipping a coin” technique, then cross the candidate off the list and start with someone new.

Richard Hohmann is a management development consultant who has written articles for many national publications, participated in television forums, and has been asked to speak at many national meetings/conventions. His company, Innovative Leadership of the Delaware Valley, LLC is a performance improvement company that integrates leadership training, strategic organizational development and performance coaching with a variety of adult learning processes to make organizations more effective. He has worked collaboratively with many organizations to create Leadership Institutes and believes that employee engagement starts with your manager.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Don't Make Promises You Can't Keep

Many companies spend a great deal of time and energy focusing on the marketing conditions, planning their strategy to meet the highly competitive environment, preparing for those unforeseen external obstacles like fuel costs, economic recession, etc. only to fall quite short of their goals.

I have noticed the following pitfalls that companies fall in:

1. They streamline their management layers losing valuable and irreplaceable talent in the process.

2. They listen to the experts in their industry and the mass media without spending the majority of their time surveying their own customers to determine what their needs may be over the next twelve months.

3. They never tell the employee what their business strategy looks like therefore engagement goes out the window.

4. They eliminate the decision-making process when it comes to the financial resources needed to move forward, and

5. They focus internally at the cost-effectiveness of their operations and don’t focus on their sales and marketing efforts and appropriate ROI

The reason for the above pitfalls is primarily due to the fact that most companies do not have a Strategic Development Process in place that can help them through the “white water” and correct their course in a relatively short period of time opposed to changing the course entirely using up their precious response time.

Do any of those scenarios sound familiar?

We can help you focus on “What Matters Most” – the ways and the means to generate revenue, your people, the systems and processes that make a difference, and the financial expectations of your actions. In other words, we help you get results. The time is now to maximize your strategy and strengths.

For more information on our “What Matters Most” Process contact us.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Making of an Effective Manager Grads!

Innovative Leadership announces AllCare Medical’s graduating class from “The Making of an Effective Manager.” Ten managers from AllCare Medical completed an extensive nine course manager training program that focused on the skills and competencies needed to help them to reach their goals and to help them learn how to deal with people as a leader.

The Making of an Effective Manager course was facilitated by Richard and Ellen Hohmann. Innovative's unique training methods focus on the development of the individual with their organization to help improve performance and productivity. The process includes a variety of components to make better leaders and managers through application and action to improve skills in the areas of delegation, staff development, handling employee problems, decision making, program solving and motivation while improving time management and organization development.

The next Making of an Effective Manager course starts on April 15th, 2009.
For more information call 609-390-2830 or visit

Pictured: From Left to Right

Front Row: Christian R, Janet S, Alicia L, Barry S, Rita H

Back Row: Dewayne G, Christine F, John A, Dewey H, Kristen N

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

March, Keeping to the Plan

It's March. Have you kept to your 2009 plan?

Use these 10 tips to stay on track or get back on track for your business or home.

  • Determine a planning and administration system that works for you.
  • Develop a budget for your business and your home
  • Use Cash Flow as a key performance indicator for your activities
  • Revisit your personal goals
  • Provide the time for a Strategic Business Development Process
  • Use your Professional Advisors to your advantage (Accountant, Lawyer, Business Consultant, Coach, Commercial Bank Representative, and Financial Advisor)
  • Formulate metrics for your personal and business success and monitor them monthly.
  • Maintain a positive attitude and be committed to change if the environment dictates
  • Exercise and continue to pursue your recreational activities or hobby
  • Focus on Responsibility, Accountability, and self-empowerment

Thursday, February 19, 2009

5 Tips to Help You Become a Better Time Manager

Time management is personal management and it is our responsibility to manage the amount of time we spend on an activity or at an event so that we can satisfy our Work/Life Balance. Most of us are being asked to do more in less time and we are also expected to do it with less stress. If we cannot manage or control time, then we cannot manage or control our lives. Here are five tips to help you become a better time manager:

Schedule Your Time Effectively – a good time manager not only schedules their events or appointments but schedules any activities including tasks and “to do’s”.

Maximize your efficiency with electronic formats – a good time manager will make sure that they understand all the features and benefits of their electronic planning and administration system, whether it be Outlook, Lotus Notes, or another electronic platform.

Eliminate the “Multi-tasking” Attitude - a good time manager completes one task or assignment before moving on to the next task or assignment.

Be a Better Project Manager – a good time manager knows more than when they started and ended an assignment or task. They guesstimate the time it takes to complete the task or assignment when they start the task or assignment and then grade themselves on how successful they were with the guesstimate. Those time managers who come within 5% of their guesstimate can give themselves an “A” in time management.

Prioritize, Prioritize, Prioritize - A good time manager spends the time each day to prioritize their activities each and every day. Many time managers use a system that reflects what must be done today and what would they like to do today.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Did you know?

The majority of Management Development and Leadership Training Programs do not provide participants with the following even though they all have been shown to improve the effectiveness of the learning for the participant:

Use problem-solving tasks
Use multiple examples
Use role-playing or practice exercises
Creation of an action plan

Here are the statistics reported in an article that appeared online in Manage Smarter , (12/23/200). Over 86% of participants said that the training made them more effective when problem-solving was included in the session. 87% of participants said the training made them more effective when multiple examples were used in the program.91% of participants said the training was more effective when practice exercises or role-plays were used and 90% of the participants found the training made them more effective when action planning was incorporated in the program.

Our Solution:

Innovative Leadership’s provides a full compliment of Leadership and Management Development Processes in which all of our courses include all of the above. Our Leadership and Management Development Courses all include Application and Action Exercises that allow the participants to actively problem-solve within each lesson. Each lesson contains a Case Study that is designed to provide multiple examples for the participants. Action Plans are used with each lesson make sure that each participant uses the newly learned material in the workplace immediately. Role-playing and practice exercises can only be delivered by experienced managers or leaders. Unlike most of the Customized Training companies, all of our facilitators have extensive management experience resulting in some pretty interesting role plays.

Call us at your convenience to find out how our programs provide more than information at 609.390.2830 or explore our website

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Let's Get Real

We have just elected a new President and we live in a country where a person can overcome almost any situation, obstacle or circumstance and achieve their goals. The same is true in business. Even though we are facing challenging economic times, we can still achieve success. The time is now to look at processes, programs, and products that can help achieve your business and personal goals.

Everyone must first develop a realistic view of the world. There is no question that the world is struggling and the world economy will probably end up reflecting no growth or maybe even shrink by 1%. In other words, 99% of the business that existed last year will exist this year! It is time to realize that we can’t let that 1% figure dictate the way that we do business. We can’t base our attitude, belief or expectation as a business owner on that 1%. Business owners today must focus on the opportunity.

It’s time to focus on your strengths and take advantage of your opportunities. Think in terms of productivity improvement resulting in expanded margins. Ask yourself, how can we increase the productivity of our staff by 10% or 20%? If you could increase productivity by 10%, this means that 9 people can do the job of 10 and if we can double that percentage, 8 people can do the job of 10 and so on. Think how much this could save your company.

The same is also true today for leadership development. Companies cannot afford to pay managers and supervisors who just watch other people work. This means two things. First, managers must become better leaders. Managers can’t spend time “managing” people; they must learn how to lead. Secondly, all employees must learn to lead themselves. The need for leadership development is greater and more urgent than ever before.

Our Leadership Development Programs all focus on the development of the total leader. Now is the time to make your management team better leaders and every employee a total leader as well. Leadership development can make the difference with the engagement of your people and their commitment to your business strategy. This improved engagement and increased productivity leads to improved margins. Innovative Leadership can provide you with clear cut expectations and demonstrate the ROI before you have to spend any money. There is no other Leadership Development Program that can produce those results.

Please call us at your convenience, 609-390-2830 or visit, for more information on these new cost effective programs that can make a difference in your company’s performance.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Now is the Right Time for Investment

Employees make a company successful, the time is right to make an investment in your people. Everyone will agree that in this uncertain economy, the management team is working overtime to protect the interests of the company. Many businesses are experiencing decreasing revenues, increasing costs, reduced margins, and customer hesitancy. All of which tends to put business owners on hold in regard to spending.

Most consultants agree that when times get tough or uncertain, as they are today, business owners must develop a cost-effective marketing plan and continue to develop your key performers. Not all business owners subscribe to this philosophy.

One major hospitality organization in our market has focused on reducing the workforce from the middle. The entire layoff comprised of middle managers. It will take a relatively short time for them to realize their mistake. Most of their top producers and high potential performers were in this group. They are now paying less and getting far less and the slide will continue downward because their people don’t have the skills and competencies to make a difference.

Now is the time to invest in your key employees and develop your high potentials. High achieving mangers and workers are five times more productive than your other staff. Many companies don’t even know who their top performers are in every area of their business. Here are some of the tools that make for a good investment for all business owners:

  • Use an assessment process to determine your high potential employee
  • Provide Leadership Training opportunities for your key employees and high potentials to insure retention and development
  • Allow your top producers to grow and develop into more valuable roles
  • Implement a goal-oriented Business Plan that everyone can understand
  • Focus on developing every employee into the Total Leader

Innovative Leadership is a performance improvement company that believes that people development is the best practice to establish organizational effectiveness. Our unique adult learning processes, programs, and products focus your people on leadership competencies and teach them the skill-sets to be high achieving managers and top performers. Unfortunately, when times are uncertain, we usually ask our good people to do more with less. Your investment allows them to be more productive, enhance their own personal performance, and continue to support the business strategy of the company. Is there more that you could want from your top producers?

Find out who your top performers are and invest. today.

It’s time to invest in the right thing . . . your people.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Flight of the High Performer

It is estimated that 47 percent of high performing employees are actively looking for new jobs while just 19 percent of low performers and only 25 percent of middle performers said they were looking.[1]

Failing to take action against the potential loss of talent poses significant risks to companies. When your best people leave, it has been demonstrated that revenue drops, quality suffers, and problems increase.

Recommended Solutions:

  • Implement a Career or Professional Development Process including Assessments to demonstrate areas of improvement or interests

  • Implement Leadership Modeling or Leadership Training Processes that demonstrate the company’s interest and commitment to the growth and development of the high potential

  • Implement a communication vehicle or forum for personal development and presentation of innovation

  • Cross train in areas of interest as opposed to their current role and responsibility

What other suggestions would you have for solutions?


[1]Flight of the High Performers, Risk & Insurance (10/08) Vol 19, No. 12, P.32 Michael O’brien

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Change Must be Believed in

Just yesterday we watched President. Barak Obama inaugurated into office. His campaign slogan was Change We Can Believe In. . .now translate that into your business.

Here are a few questions to think and act on:
  • As a business owner, what Changes will you be making in 2009 that your employees can believe in?
  • As a Business owner, what Changes in Your Plan of Actions will keep your employees more engaged?
  • How does your Strategic Plan reflect the Change Plan by the new President?
Change must be believed in.....use the right type of training and development to achieve employee engagement
What are you planning to do differently in 2009? Let's make a list of Five "To Do's"
1. Conduct more one on one conversations with employees
2. Use meetings to both gain insight and focus on innovation
3. Use Training and Development that includes practical ideas that can be applied in the workplace today that can make a difference.
4. Formulate a budget and monitor the results monthly
5. Focus on the strengths of the employee and the commitment by your customers.


Article written by Richard J. Hohmann Jr., Senior Business and Management Consultant for Innovative Leadership, a strategic partner with Fitzpatrick, Bongiovanni, & Kelly, PC, and also a member of the Collaboration Team for Leadership Management International. Richard can also speak at your next organization’s meeting, to invite him to speak call 609-390-2830, For your business solutions click here: http://

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Key Areas of Focus for Managers

In these turbulent times, it is imperative that management create a plan of action that reflects the Strategic Business Objectives of the company and gets each and every staff member to be engaged in activities that will produce the desired outcomes. Here are my recommended resolutions for managers:

1. Focus on your key clients and make sure you understand the Pareto Principle…..the 80-20 rule that reflects the fact that 20% of your clients provide 80% if your revenue.

2. Improve communication with your staff and make sure that your platforms are effective. Make sure you spend the time for One-on-Ones with all team members.

3. Identify your key employees and make sure their development plan reflects a succession plan for your company.

4. Create Dashboards that reflect the financial implications including revenue generation, operating costs or expenses, and profitability by your area or department. Use Dashboards to make quicker decisions or take actions that are more effective.

5. Focus on your strengths and how you can elevate your performance without dwelling on your weaknesses.

6. Create specific metrics for your department and individual team members

7. Be open to create cultural change in your department and company.

8. Delegate and cross-train to the maximum.

9. Use technology to become more effective, not efficient.

10. Lead by example: exhibit a goal-oriented process at all times.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Key Business Resolutions for 2009

In these turbulent times, it is imperative that companies optimize their strengths and utilize their resources to provide the customer with quality products and/or services. So here are my recommended resolutions for Businesses:

1. Strengthen your relationship with your client
- Use every possible tool and practice to both touch your clients frequently. Determine what is important to them and show them how you are meeting their expectations.

2. Make a Plan
- Create a plan that is both tactical and strategically. Make sure you include a creative and financially sound marketing plan.

3. Improve communication with your management team and employees
- Focus on your key employees and make sure that they understand the need to improve communication and be accountable for results.

4. Implement cost cutting techniques without sacrificing quality
- Be prepared to budget accordingly in relation to the external and internal factors affecting your highly competitive market.

5. Build a support team
- Lean on your advisory team of professionals to help you formulate a financially focused action plan that offers the metrics to define success.

6. Become goal-oriented
- Create a goal-oriented culture that thrives on achievement.

7. Monitor your progress
- Make sure you create dashboards for you and your management team to monitor the key performance indicators.

Article written by Richard J. Hohmann Jr., Senior Business and Management Consultant for Innovative Leadership, a strategic partner with Fitzpatrick, Bongiovanni, & Kelly, PC, and also a member of the Collaboration Team for Leadership Management International. Richard can also speak at your next organization’s meeting, to invite him to speak call 609-390-2830, For your business solutions click here: http://