As a child, I wanted to play hockey like Bobby Hall, Stan Mikita, Tony Esposito, and other Chicago Blackhawks. And when I say I wanted to “play hockey” I mean, of course, that I wanted to hit other guys with my fists and then club them with a hard slab of wood. It’s a guy…
Some events are very predictable.When I was a kid, one of the surest signs that I was ready to catch some grief from my mom was her not-so-subtle inclusion of my middle name when she summoned me. When I was in school, I could usually tell I was in trouble when the teacher would add the formal-sounding “Mister” in front of my last name. In the history dating, the phrase “We have to talk” has never signaled the beginning of a big, fat, happy surprise. And if you’re a manager, if the first though an employee has when you call for a one-on-one meeting is, “Crap. I’m in trouble”… there’s a good chance that you’re a BOSS, not a LEADER.
You’re going about your day, and someone responds negatively and forcefully to you when you haven’t done anything wrong that you’re aware of. Maybe you were in the wrong place at the wrong time.If you’re like most people, you apologize and backtrack as if you recognize the error of your way. And then later, it may occur to you, “Hey! What did I do? That person jumped down my throat for no good reason!”
Human evolution can’t keep pace with the evolution in technology. Humans appeared in the Stone Age 2.5 million years ago, and we still look and act pretty much the same. Contrast that to the telephone that, in less than 15o years, has gone from fixed, hard-wired devices requiring 1.5 billion miles of cable in the US alone to wireless, anywhere/anytime capabilities. Has the time come when technology can provide better leadership than humans?
Today, organizations employ PROBLEM SOLVERS like customer service representatives, mediators, human resource professionals, and arbitrators. All of these roles provide solutions. But a COMPLAINT DEPARTMENT offers only a place to complain, vent, whine, point the finger, belly-ache, and play the victim. Unless your actual job entails spending the day listening to coworkers gripe, here’s what I’m suggesting…
Relevant, meaningful performance management doesn’t require the efforts of a human resources department. It just requires a manager who gets the ball rolling by applying these 3 simple tricks of the trade.
Employees with great performance need to know that they are in charge of their own awesomeness. Employees who are in the terminal stages of being disgruntled and disengaged may need to hear a final message from you: “You can be disgruntled, or you can be an employees. But you can’t be both.”
When you’re in the 51% Zone, you redefine a good day as anything above the 50% mark. It takes practice to stay in that zone, and it doesn’t require a car accident or a tragedy as a catalyst. But it does require challenging your perspective when negative events occur.
Former insider Greg Smith called the culture at Goldman Sachs “toxic and destructive” in a recent Op Ed piece in the New York Times. But I want to make this story personal. What it Greg Smith were your employee? What would your Greg Smith say about YOU and your company?
If you want engaged employees, start with the best ingredients: hire only those who possess the right attitude.
Here’s a performance tip for you: If you want to get better, surround yourself with those who elevate your level of play. Many immature athletes, employees, students, and general participants in life feel comforted with they surround themselves with inferiors. Face it: we can look very tall when we surround ourselves with pygmies. But that is not a recipe for real growth. Rather, when we only “play” with poor or mediocre performers, we get lazy and dull.
Customer satisfaction and loyalty don’t require flawless delivery as much as they require a level of people savvy after there’s been a problem. I needed to print a picture late one night last week when I was out of town on business. On line, I found a Walmart thirty minutes away, so I called to…