Thursday, July 29, 2010

Is Management Limited Their Employees?


Following my reading of an adaption from Making It Work by David Allen, I certainly was in agreement with the author that the two key ingredients for self-management are control and perspective. The author believed that if you can maintain a sufficient level in each, your world will be in order and you will be focused exactly as you should be.

Others believe that individuals who need change are more likely to succeed if they are in control of the change process. Getting people to learn and apply the appropriate principles is not very easy. Hence, to most, this self managed change is not an easy thing to do. Where do you start on such a task?

1 - First exhibit awareness of what changes are needed. Ask yourself, “What behaviors and attitudes am I using today that are prohibiting me from moving forward?” Once the inhibitive behaviors or actions are identified, then a plan must be developed to enable us to use new solutions or behaviors that will reflect our growth and development objectives. What does that mean? You must change your reactions, or habits to get a different result.

2 - For implementation to take place, we must translate our plan into goals that will bring us the desired change. This goal-orientation process is the most important component of self-management because it can be measured and the results are clearly defined. This allows us to be focused on the things that matter most, as I like to believe it is a contract with ourselves. This holds true for all areas in our life; not just work but home life as well.

3 - We also must have the right attitude because goal-orientation requires coaching and self-management. It is a model that is used by many professional coaches today. Positive attitude provides an overwhelming edge for our success. Our non-verbal communication, which is 60% of communication, is a direct reflection of our attitude. Our perspective on life will also certainly be reflected by our success in reaching our goals.

But are we ready for Self-Management? An article that appeared in the September 2006 issue of the Harvard Business Review by James Haskett, stated that “Predominant reactions to notations of self-management explored in this month’s column could be described best by two words, “enthusiasm” and “skepticism’”. Many respondents felt that the concepts of self-management should be implemented in organizations while others felt that obstacles to their implementation was real, and that management itself was the main culprit. As managers, are we our worst enemy for not allowing people to become self-managers?

Employees need to focus on the skill-sets and competencies that will help them manage themselves better both in the workplace and at home. Every worker must be considered a leader and their initial leadership focus should be on self-management. Self-management is not only understanding what is needed to be more productive, but it is also asking “How do I become a goal-oriented individual and learn to control priorities?” and “Do I really practice self-empowerment or even know what it means?”

I would like to see everyone conduct a S.W.O.T. analysis on themselves and understand that personal management can dramatically improve both your productivity and performance. If we learn and initiate the skills for effective personal management, then we just may be ready to accept the principles of self-management and its related components in the workplace today.

Contact Us Or Register Online Now for our Developing the Leader in You Showcase!
Or Learn More Here

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The Process for Employee Alignment and Achievement

Here are ten steps to take today and in the future to align your employees so they will positively effect your bottom line while achieving their goals.

1. Separate the strategic and tactical thinking processes

2. Define the business strategy in all areas of the business (Revenue, Operations, Personnel, and Financial)

3. Make everyone aware of the business strategy and plant the seed that will allow them to achieve those goals

4. Make sure clarity of the business strategy is established for all

5. Break the Strategic Business Plan down into goals by business unit, division and/or department (Eat the Elephant in small bites)

6. Develop a goal-orientation culture within the company

7. Formulate specific, time sensitive, prioritized goals that provide each employee with a clear sight to the strategy, department goals, and reflect upon their own roles and responsibilities.

8. Let the employee develop the metrics and reporting structure that will continue to provide clarity and measure achievement

9. Set process meetings to determine your success or failure with opportunity to recommend changes demonstrating their value in the process

10. Be satisfied that the overall business strategy must be changed to reflect the highly competitive and volatile marketplace.

Achieve Greatness - Each Employee has a Major Impact on the Bottom Line

Today I visited several companies of various sizes in a variety of industries and I would like to tell you that it is not a very bright picture for Strategically-Oriented Human Resource Professionals. The majority of executives continue to have an “accountant” attitude toward business. . .cut costs. . .cut expenses. . .cut people. . .more cuts.

I even heard of one CFO that feels people development is a waste of time and doesn’t have any understanding of the ramifications of almost 65% of his management team is retiring in less than 24 months! Forget succession planning; let’s just go with massive hiring and selection without talent development. Other HR Professionals that I visited today are now back to only performing a variety of administrative duties and no longer have a budget for people development or anything else for that matter. On my next to my last call, I visited with an HR professional whose executive management team anointed her the saver of the company. She was told that they wanted her to be part of the executive leadership team in the development of a new management team that would take the company to the next level. I cannot tell you how much fun it was to sit and listen to her plans and ideas for accomplishing her goal.

Upon arriving home, I became I read on an article titled, "Alignment Drives Employee Engagement and Productivity" available from Taleo Research. It points out that the HR role is key in driving the process and selecting the tools needed to achieve alignment. It also demonstrates that statistically most managers do not see HR as being up to the task. In the majority of companies I visited today, their managers felt that way as well.

The fact of the matter is HR cannot execute the strategy without the commitment of the front line managers. Most HR professionals would also agree that aligning talent to business, providing current job roles and responsibilities, and measuring performance creates an environment where the employee’s passion for the business can grow and drive the overall performance of their company.

Isn’t it time for the executives and cave dwellers to wake up? Numerous studies have proven that goal alignment and engagement improve productivity and company performance. When your employee is engaged, and aligned, each employee can have a major impact on the bottom line of a business.

Engagement improves productivity, creates top performers, and improves employee retention while alignment ties the business strategy to personal goals, improves engagement and promotes achievement. But we must be forward thinkers and align the two; it provides focus and a clear line of sight for all involved while decreasing lost productivity and increases revenue per employee. The impact of all of this lies in productivity and process improvement, risk reduction and organizational impacts.

So what’s left for us to do; train the management and employees to be better goal setters? It is believed that only 15% of all employees really think that their goals will help them achieve great things. An employee achieving great things will impact the bottom line and insure that the company is achieving great things. Your front line managers define the culture for achievement and the employee demonstrates that a results-oriented company will achieve greatness.