Executive, managers, supervisors and team leaders recognize the value that comes from increased employee involvement. They often struggle with how to get that involvement. We’ll explore five leadership actions that will increase employee involvement and drive gains in productivity, quality and workplace morale. The three main benefits of greater employee involvement: 1. Because they are […]
Distractions From Adding Value
Distractions from Adding Value Front line supervisors and sales people in recent workshops have been grumbling more than usual about oppressive workloads, the resulting stress and the inability to focus on important, but less urgent tasks. Now before you allow yourself to say, “Suck it up buttercup, just get it done,” think a little deeper. Each person in your organization from the front line staff to the executive boardroom is supposed to create value: produce something that the customer pays for and values. If these people have their time occupied by non-value tasks it will negatively impact customer service and profitability. Excess administration can take people away from the prime purpose of their positions. Some administration is needed in every organization but it should be streamlined, automated and minimized to ensure value is maximized. Given that each department or function within an organization has its own goals, priorities and initiatives, they can place demands on the front line of the organization, which if left unchecked can slowly take people away from their prime job functions. Social-technical engineering examines the tasks that employees are responsible for versus the time available for those tasks. In many organizations, tasks are added and few are removed. Over time, the residue of this will show in reduced productivity and effectiveness. A few examples: Sales Sales people complain about the CRM information and sales forecasting time when they really should be directing their efforts towards selling. A recent sales-training group shared their frustration with CRM (a common complaint with sales people) because the data entered didn’t really help the sales person, and because the data was suspect, managers couldn’t rely on it and so typically added more reporting to give them the info they needed. This left the sales force scratching their heads, wondering why management would want them to spend less time with customers. Front Line Supervisors and Employees Front line leaders and employees complain about endless checklists and reporting which takes them away from more face time. It’s not that these meetings, checklists and documentation aren’t important, its just that it might not be value-added enough or there might be a better way. Plant Managers When one client examined the amount of time that plant managers spent each day on conference calls, they discovered that on some days up to five hours was spent on the telephone. This is time that would be better spent interacting with people and dealing with issues in the facility. It Costs How Much? One participant in a staff training session complained that because executives liked to be able to see a daily snap shot of production in an email on their smartphone, he had to spend 45 every day, taking the production numbers from the regular system and then re-enter them in a spreadsheet and then take the resulting numbers and put them in an email. To the executives it was value-added – they wanted the numbers. But if they knew that the cost was 45 minutes every […]
Us and Them or We
Us and them or we? Does your management team inadvertently have an us versus them mentality? One of the symptoms is when managers speak poorly of supervisors or employees or vice versa. Or it might be assuming that the front line fully understands the direction and strategy when in fact they don’t. It might be […]
Forget Motivating, Avoid De-Motivating For all the efforts that organizations and front line leaders place on creating a motivational climate, they should put some attention on reducing or eliminating the de-motivators. Here are some of the ways you might be de-motivating your employees and how to turn it around: 1. Punishing your good performers To […]
How Trustworthy are You?
How Trustworthy are You? Newspaper headlines focus on a never ending series of trust breaches in institutions, government, politicians, CEO’s, and companies. Because trust has been breached, everyone is inconvenienced. Long security lines at the airport, extra hoops to go through when applying for a loan, and lots of fine print to read and re-read. […]