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  • feedwordpress 17:58:09 on 2018/06/11 Permalink
    Tags: , , Employees, , , , ,   

    How to Successfully Clone Your Best Employee 

    We all have someone at the top of the pack, an outstanding employee we can entrust with virtually any project or situation. The one we are terrified will leave. The one we wish we could clone.

    It’s not exactly cloning, but you wish you could create a new generation of employees instilled with your best employee’s values–and keep the original engaged and happy in your organization at the same time.

    It may sound too good to be true, but I’ve seen it happen. Here’s how:

    1. Start by thanking them–the right way. Provide them with very specific recognition that lets them know exactly what you value in their work and how they make a difference. The key is to be as detailed and specific as possible in the abilities, attitudes, and actions you appreciate in them, and the benefits they bring to the organization.

    2. Find out what they value. What’s important to them? What makes them happy, and what do they need to continue to succeed? Just recognizing people’s drivers and needs is a huge step in making them feel valued. And the more valued your best employees feel, the better.

    3. Prepare them for leadership. Let your high performer know that you want to help them prepare them for a leadership role. Then guide them as they learn to articulate their values and principles in a way that others can understand and follow. When the rest of your staff sees you coaching the best, it sends a message that even the most effective employees require training and coaching in leadership, which eliminates resentment issues.

    4. Plan for ongoing development. Make sure you’re providing the training, help, and support your superstar needs at every step along the way. Some can come from you and some will better come from others. Look at your own strengths and weaknesses, and think about what forms of support have been most important to you.

    5. Teach them to listen. Help them become the person that others in your organization trust with their challenges and concerns by teaching them to focus not only on what’s being said but on nonverbal and contextual cues, to seek the underlying issues and frustrations that may be at work, and to always be attentive and responsive.

    6. Have them lead by example. Turn your new leader loose to see what they do well, and give them a chance to shine. Stay supportive and involved, but don’t interfere unless you see a significant issue.

    Allow your best people to lead by example and set the tone for others to follow, and you may find that their greatness is contagious.


    N A T I O N A L    B E S T S E L L E R


    What Gets Between You and Your Greatness

    After decades of coaching powerful executives around the world, Lolly Daskal has observed that leaders rise to their positions relying on a specific set of values and traits. But in time, every executive reaches a point when their performance suffers and failure persists. Very few understand why or how to prevent it.

    buy now


    Additional Reading you might enjoy:


    Photo Credit: Getty Images

    The post How to Successfully Clone Your Best Employee appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

  • feedwordpress 01:21:40 on 2018/06/11 Permalink
    Tags: , , , Employees, , , , , Rules, ,   

    10 Dumb Rules That Make Your Best People Quit 

    It’s hard enough to attract and hold on to good employees–but to attract and hold on to the best employees is even harder.

    Occasionally they leave because of an opportunity they can’t pass up, but most of the time the cause lies with the company they’re leaving.

    Too many workplaces create rule-driven cultures that may keep management feeling like things are under control, but they squelch creativity and reinforce the ordinary.

    The more rules, the less passion–which means less motivation.

    The more rules, the less excitement–which means less powerful performance.

    The more rules, the less enthusiasm–which means lower profits.

    Faced with a rule-driven culture, the best employees–the most talented and hard working–are usually the first to go, because they’re in high demand and have more opportunity than most.

    What’s left is a pool of people who are mediocre at what they do, willing to compromise their standards, and in it mostly for the paycheck.

    And if you have mediocre people doing mediocre work, you are going to have a mediocre company.

    Here’s a simple principle for hiring and keeping the best and most talented people:

    Stop creating dumb rules.

    How do you know if a rule is dumb?

    Ask yourself who needs it. If it’s directed primarily at the people you wish you hadn’t hired, it’s probably a dumb rule.

    Here are some prime examples:

    1. Dumb rules for hiring. Imagine you’re a potentially great employee applying for a job with your organization. You polish your résumé and write a compelling cover letter. And then you enter the black hole–the space between applying for a job and being hired (or getting an impersonal notification that the job’s been filled). It’s not just dumb–it’s inhumane. Isn’t there a way to create hiring processes with a human touch? Isn’t it possible to find the right person on the basis of their words and presentation and a sense of who they are instead of relying on keyword search? Humanize the process and you’ll get better and more talented people.

    2. Dumb rules for performance reviews and rankings. Let’s be honest: Performance reviews are a waste of time. Brilliant and talented people deserve better than being slotted into some bureaucratic five-point scale once a year. It doesn’t provide valuable feedback–it’s just a ritual that’s dreaded by everyone involved. Forced ranking, sometimes called stack ranking, is even worse. Lining up your employees and comparing them with one another, best to worst, is one of the stupidest ideas I have ever encountered as a coach and business consultant. Why would anyone want to stay at a company that treats people this way? How hard it must be to trust your colleagues when you’re essentially in an organizational version of the Hunger Games. Does any meaningful information come out of such a process? Gifted and talented people should be supported in their strength and uniqueness, not compared with others or measured against arbitrary standards.

    If you don’t trust the people you hired, why did you hire them? (And if you don’t trust your managers to hire good people, why did you make them managers?) Get rid of annual reviews and rankings, and allow people to be brilliant and motivated and creative. Encourage them to set goals and maintain high standards, and support them in doing so. Trust them to produce, and if they are not producing let them go.

    3. Dumb rules for onsite attendance. In many positions, smart people don’t need policies to force them into showing up at the office. People know what work they have to do that day and where best to do it. One week, they may know they have something truly valuable to contribute or learn in a group setting at the office, but the next week, they may see that their time is better spent meeting a deadline from home with availability by message or phone. Those who consistently fail to show up and contribute are likely not meeting other standards as well.

    4. Dumb rules for approvals. Ask yourself how productive you’d be in your personal life if you had to get someone else to approve all your purchases and decisions. You’d never get anything done! Do you really want your best workers to spend their time chasing people for rubber-stamp approvals? If you’re talking about a big project or new procedure, approvals are appropriate, but to require them on everything is ludicrous. It slows down work, wastes money, and tells people you don’t trust their judgment.

    5. Dumb rules for time off. If a dedicated employee doesn’t feel good enough to come to work, what’s the point in making them drag themselves out of bed to get a doctor’s slip? Just let people know that when they’re sick, they’re expected to stay home and rest until they’re well enough (and noncontagious enough) to return to work. For a serious illness, maybe a transition time of half days is appropriate. Similarly, if people want to take a personal day, don’t make them lie about it. Treat the great people you hired with respect. Trust that they know how to honor their time and work hard delivering on their promises, and encourage them to take a down day if they need it for whatever reason, no questions asked. Requiring documentation is another case of sending a message that you don’t trust the people you’ve hired.

    6. Dumb rules for frequent flyer miles. Work travel isn’t easy–leaving your life behind and living out of a hotel room in a place where you may not know even a soul can be true drudgery. And with airport check-in lines that stretch out for hours, TSA impositions, and constantly canceled flights, it can seriously feel like years are being shaved off your life. That’s why frequent flyer miles should belong to the person who earned them, not the company. It’s a no-cost way for you to reward the person’s sacrifice. Rules stating otherwise are not only stupid but grossly unfair.

    7. Dumb feedback methods. I have worked with companies that put complete faith in employee engagement surveys, but frankly I believe they’re a sham. If you want to know how things are, just walk around and ask people face-to-face. Speak to them, hold a conversation, engage. A quick online survey will give you shallow responses. The best way to learn what’s happening is to have honest, candid conversations about what is working and what is not. If that’s impossible, you have a big problem with connection and communication–the two most important things that drive engagement. Look to the source and speak to the heart of your people. They don’t need to speak through fancy surveys; they can get to the heart of the matter on their own if you give them a chance.

    8. Dumb rules for cell phones. Making people check their phones on the way in so they can’t be used for confidential documents or information shows only–again–a lack of trust. The main reason for having a phone is so you can be easily contacted. Why not trust your smart people to make smart choices?

    9. Dumb rules for internet use. These are among the stupidest rules of all. In offices that have such policies, the rule is broken by everyone, including the person who created it. It’s one thing to ask people to limit their time or to put reasonable restrictions on what kind of sites they can visit, but to forbid access to information is just plain dumb.

    10. Dumb probationary rules. Many organizations still have the throwback rule that employees have to be in a position for six months before they can transfer or be promoted. This might have worked in the past–even Baby Boomers who weren’t happy with their jobs went along with the rules–but these days the work force is different. If someone wants to get around the six-month rule, they will simply defy it–or quit.

    If you came up in an organizational culture governed by rules, especially dumb rules, you have to ask yourself if you belong there.


    N A T I O N A L    B E S T S E L L E R


    What Gets Between You and Your Greatness

    After decades of coaching powerful executives around the world, Lolly Daskal has observed that leaders rise to their positions relying on a specific set of values and traits. But in time, every executive reaches a point when their performance suffers and failure persists. Very few understand why or how to prevent it.

    buy now


    Additional Reading you might enjoy:


    Photo Credit: Getty Images

    The post 10 Dumb Rules That Make Your Best People Quit appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

  • feedwordpress 23:46:36 on 2018/06/10 Permalink
    Tags: , , Employees, , , , , , ,   

    7 Reasons the Best Employees Quit, Even When They Like Their Job 

    Losing a great employee is a terrible thing. There’s the expense of finding, onboarding, and training a replacement. There’s the uncertainty of how a new employee will work out. There’s the hardship on the rest of your staff until the position can be filled.

    Sometimes there’s a solid reason–the person was a bad fit for the team, or moved away for personal reasons, or was offered an opportunity too great to pass up. In those cases, even if it’s a difficult transition, it feels fundamentally right.

    But what about the rest?

    Keeping your best employees starts with understanding why people leave. Here are seven of the top reasons:

    1. Stagnation

    People don’t want to think they’re locked into a groove and will come to the same place and do the same thing every day for the next 20 or 40 years. People want to feel that they’re still moving forward and growing in their professional life. They want to have something to aspire to. If there’s no career ladder or structure for advancement, they know they’ll need to seek it somewhere else. In the meantime, they’re far more likely to be bored, unhappy, and resentful–things that affect performance and the entire team’s morale.

    2. Overwork

    Some periods of stress and feeling overwhelmed come with most jobs, but nothing burns out great employees faster than overwork. And often it’s the best employees–the most capable and committed, your most trusted–you overload the most. If they find themselves constantly taking on more and more, especially in the absence of recognition such as promotions and raises, they come to feel they’re being taken advantage of. And who could blame them? You’d feel the same.

    3. Vague visions

    There’s nothing more frustrating than a workplace filled with visions and big dreams, but no translation of those aspirations into the strategic goals that make them achievable. Without that connection, it’s all just talk. What talented person wants to spend his or her time and energy in support of something undefined? People like to know that they’re working to create something, not just spinning their wheels.

    4. Profits over people

    When an organization values its bottom line more than its people, the best people go elsewhere, leaving behind those who are too mediocre or apathetic to find a better position. The result is a culture of underperformance, low morale, and even disciplinary issues. Of course, things like profit, output, pleasing stakeholders, and productivity are important–but success ultimately depends on the people who do the work.

    5. Lack of recognition

    Even the most selfless people want to be recognized and rewarded for a job well done. It is part of who we are as human beings. When you fail to recognize employees, you’re not only failing to motivate them but also missing out on the most effective way to reinforce great performance. Even if you don’t have the budget for raises or bonuses, there are lots of low-cost ways to provide recognition–and a word of appreciation is free. People won’t care if they don’t feel noticed.

    6. Lack of trust

    Your employees have a vantage point for viewing your behavior and weigh it against your commitments. If they see you dealing unethically with vendors, lying to stakeholders, cheating clients, or failing to keep your word, the best and most principled of them will leave. The rest, even worse, will stay behind and follow your lead.

    7. Excessive hierarchy

    Every workplace needs structure and leadership, but a rigidly top-down organization makes for unhappy employees. If your best performers know they’re expected to produce without contributing their ideas, if they’re not empowered to make decisions, if they’re constantly having to defer to others on the basis of their title rather than their expertise, they don’t have much to be happy about.

    Ultimately, many people who leave their job do so because of the boss, not the work or the organization. Ask yourself what you may be doing to drive your best people away, and start making the changes needed to keep them.

    N A T I O N A L    B E S T S E L L E R


    What Gets Between You and Your Greatness

    After decades of coaching powerful executives around the world, Lolly Daskal has observed that leaders rise to their positions relying on a specific set of values and traits. But in time, every executive reaches a point when their performance suffers and failure persists. Very few understand why or how to prevent it.

    buy now


    Additional Reading you might enjoy:


    Photo Credit: Getty Images

    The post 7 Reasons the Best Employees Quit, Even When They Like Their Job appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

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