“I don’t know why exactly I’m paying this guy”, lamented a CEO. He has a good heart, and he believes the pay should be commensurate to the services rendered or actual work done. But he believes this ‘guy’ is just not doing enough to deserve the kind of money he gets at the end of the month.
Have you ever suffered this as an employee? Or if you are an employer, do you think this may be true for any of your staffs? Then the following tips may serve to get more from your employees, or to give more to your organization.
1. Communicate objectives with clarity and sincerity. One of the reasons people may not do beyond what they perceive as their Job Description is because they may not have a clue as to what is really important to the organization right now. They may come to work and stay even longer, but if their contribution is not imparting directly on the company’s objectives, it may seem like they are not doing much. According to the SHRM Foundation in a 2012 publication, Employees who have a clear understanding of the big picture make more informed decisions and can more readily connect with what is happening in the larger environment, rather than needing continual step-by-step guidance from their managers.
2. Catch them do something right. The traditional means of providing feedback is usually quarterly, twice-a-year, or yearly. I once worked in an organization where feedbacks are taken without them being communicated to you. If you do well consistently for six months, you get a pay rise. If otherwise, you get a pay cut. And there’s usually no one to explain to you why. Chunking down goals to your employees helps them to know what exactly is required of them per time. And providing ongoing feedback helps them to know how well they are faring, and how much effort is required. In the book, One Minute Manager, Levy told the young inquirer that the One Minute Manager “looks you straight in the eye and tells you precisely what you did right. Then he shares with you how good he feels about what you did.” If you develop the habit of catching your employees do something right, they will always give it to you.
3. Help them outgrow their weaknesses. The SHRM Foundation research team found out that people learn and develop faster on the job. As you set periodic goals and commit tasks to your employees, it helps them to keep getting better on the job. It also opens you up to know areas where they are weak, and need extra or external reinforcement (usually through training). This can be the best Employee Development Program you can have for your team. Check their present level of expertise, and if you must grow beyond that, either hire someone who is already there, or you take your staff there through training.
In summary, you can always get the best out of your employees if you let them know the direction the organization is heading, you work with them in knowing what exactly they must do in arriving at the destination, you let them know informally and spontaneously how well they are doing, and you provide means for them to grow and acquire better skills so that they can serve you better.
To your productivity!
Dele Ayo Bankole (DAB)