Friday, 14 May, 2010

People First..

Most people work-hard either for personal fulfillment or love. Others have certain goals and aspirations to contribute to something bigger. Some fill their empty time with an activity, a change or a challenge to cater to. Others fulfill their particular needs through accomplishment of some pre-stated missions.

Companies often overestimate their employee's satisfaction level by limiting it to the monetary rewards. In an article, "The Ten Ironies of Motivation", by Bob Nelson, he states that, "More than anything else, employees want to be valued for a job well done by those they hold in high esteem". A simple sign of appreciation and gratitude like 'thank you', by a supervisor or manager, on completion of a humiliating task performed well, acts as an effective motivational tool. It is important, as quoted by Traci Fenton, founder & CEO, WorldBlu, "The organisation should not treat some people like ‘somebodies’ and other people like ‘nobodies’".

Binding the workforce to the organization is no more limited to a "network selling" or a "direct selling company". Personnel turnover is an essential parameter for any organization to take care of. A lot of surveys consistently illustrate that "more than 40 percent of people who quit do so because they feel they weren't appreciated for their contributions", clearly undermining the importance of recognition and attention from supervisors.

A simple "caught you at your best program", allows employees to thank or acknowledge others for doing exceptional work. A handwritten note with a specific detail about a praiseworthy attitude exhibiting instant recognition fosters esprit de corpse - the spirit of a group that makes all its members succeed.

To celebrate and value the employees well as a crucial asset is also important. By using one-size-fits-all approach in terms of salary, recognition, praise or benefits, the company actually punishes the best performers. As Vince Lombardi is reputed to have said, "There is nothing more unequal that the equal treatment of unequals." An overall involvement of supervisors in the performance review process along with a productive feedback can more likely improve the performance of an employee. The company can also restructure the KRAs (key responsibility areas) of its employees according to their respective passions.

Kamal Karnath, MD of Kelly Services, on undertaking his team to climb Garur Maachi, a fort near Pune, stated the importance of off-sites, which according to him helps "handle the disgruntled employees". Karnath, further says that firms have even started hiring third-party consulting agencies to check on staff satisfaction levels and report to the respective heads.

At Brainpark, in San Francisco, employees can vote the CEO and senior leaders out of their position if they feel they are not doing a good job. Such cases are not be common in India, but companies are trying to make a difference. HCL Technologies, with nearly 60,000 employees’ world-wide, calls their management approach, ‘Employees First, Customers Second’.

Employees’ delivers value to customers, customer brings growth to organization, and growth offers opportunities to employees. Thereby, employees’ forms a part of asset group that provides a future economic benefit to the company. And, therefore, it is very important to build a protected and progressive environment for them to nurture them.

Recently i met an a highly successful entrepreneur who said" i started my co. with two things - People & Service " and as his organization becomes a multi-million enterprise he's come a full circle with " re-energizing the core strength- People "

Another entrepreneur of whose start-up faced problems in retaining the employees was analysed to be because they didn't have proper induction program. "We thought providing them the freedom to work as per their own free will was enough, when they(employees) were looking for a clear direction and process."

So being the next google as the "best place to work with" requires more than just the intent or incentives..