Using Non-Monetary Rewards to Retain Top Talent Part 2

Part One listed four of seven things companies can do to retain their top talent without spending a lot or giving increases in compensation.

The first four from Part One are:

1) Verbal Praise

2) Achievement Awards

3) Learning and Development

4) Fun and Recreation Events

Each of these can be done at the department or company level.  Each demonstrates a culture that rewards people for outstanding effort, provides a positive culture, and a culture that signals respect for the employee.

The last three are:

5) Company Wide Attention This is a step up from department rewards and recognition. This is at the company level. It is great to be honored or recognized by one's boss, however, when it is by the CEO or at a company level it is a completely different experience. Examples include, recognition in the company newsletter or on its Website, the up front parking space, a picture on the Wall of Fame, recognition at the annual staff meeting, a medal of distinction, any seemingly small thing for exceptional performance, for performing beyond the call of duty or an event that demonstrates extra effort.

It is often these small things that have the biggest and lasting impact.

6) Impactful and Meaningful Work This is one of the biggest reasons top talent contact executive recruiters. Top talent must be constantly challenged. They want to know what is expected of them. When clear direction is consistently lacking, they become frustrated and disengage. However, when top talent have a target to hit they will not only engage but strive to hit the bull's eye.

Giving your best people additional  challenges doesn't mean you have to constantly be expanding their responsibilities. There is a lot of  ground between saying, “That is your job and that is all there is.” to time-to-time challenging them with a special project, taking something off of your desk and giving it to them, allowing them to serve on an ad hoc project, stretching them with some strategic thinking, or involving them in an inter-department project. We find that all it takes is as little as 5% of top talent's time to be focused on impactful and meaningful work to make a difference.

7) Feedback This seems so obvious but many managers fail to do it. This is not the “good job” feedback discussed earlier. This feedback is at a much higher level. This is feedback that all top talent want and few get. This is what we call, 1-2-1 time. These sessions can be as short as 20 minutes a month. These 1-2-1 sessions focus on their growth, on improvement, build rapport, show genuine interest by the manager, and give time to demonstrate a personal interest in that individual. In our experience, when a manager takes the opportunity to conduct a 1-2-1 on a regular basis, the employee feels a part of the organization. They have the opportunity to be involved in the department, they can give and get feedback, participate, and be heard by their supervisor.

The 1-2-1 can be one of the most powerful experiences for an employee and their supervisor and it can be done in just 20 minutes a month.

Doing one or all of these seven things can dramatically impact your department or organization. In these difficult times any one of these will cement the loyalty of those top performers to you and your company. They will stand by you in difficult times and excel in great times

Join the other 10,000 CEOs, key executives and HR professionals and download a FREE copy of our best-selling book, “You’re NOT The Person I Hired.”  Just CLICK HERE  and under the FREE Hiring Resources section you can download our free eBook.

Retaining your best talent is always the best thing any company can do. Download our FREE  Non-Monetary Rewards and Recognitions Matrix. It will help you retain your best people without additional compensation. CLICK HERE to download under the Free Resources section.

I welcome your thoughts and comments.

Brad Remillard

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Your Current Team Might NOT be the Right Team

Is your current team that got you to this point the same team that can take you to the next level?

In working with thousands of companies over the last two decades, I’ve discovered a limiting factor for most entrepreneurial-to-middle market companies:

 

The team that got you to one place may not be the team to get you to the next place.

 

A team that is incapable of taking you to where you desire to go – is a team that acts like a glass ceiling – limiting your opportunities, compounding your problems, and preventing you from “breaking through” to the next level (I was watching a Doors documentary the other day and the catch-phrases keep turning over in my mind).

If you have a typical team of 5-7 direct reports, perhaps 2-3 are incapable of delivering the results required to achieve your vision, strategy, or expectations. This pulls the entire team down to a lower level. Since everyone’s work is inter-related, the success of your team is collective – not individualistic.

The result is that you’re now 2-3 years further behind from where you wanted to be at this stage, and your slipping backwards at an increasing rate.

So, why haven’t you done anything about your team’s inability to get you the results you require?

We’ve touched on some of the reasons in a few of my past blog articles, such as:

 

When Did Accepting Mediocre Performance Become the New Normal?

Are You Playing the Game of Let’s Give it Another 30 Days?

Are You Over-Paid?

 

There’s a fundamental problem in recognizing whether or not your team is the right team to get you to the next level.

Most of the time, the CEO, Key Executive, or Manager has not defined for their subordinate the performance or success required in the job. Therefore, unless the subordinate is a complete idiot, you have NO way of discerning: Do I have the right person on  my team?

If you’ve had the opportunity to see Brad or I present our award-winning workshop, “You’re NOT the Person I Hired,” then you know the correct solution can be found in being able to craft a SUCCESS FACTOR SNAPSHOT (SFS) that directly links back to business goals. Without a SFS, you’re like a rudderless ship at sea.

The SFS gives you the roadmap, guideline, and measurement tool to keep individuals and teams on track toward achieving your desired results.

You can download a few SFS examples from our website by clicking here.

Are you prepared to discover whether you’ve got the right people on the bus as Jim Collins terms it in Good to Great? What’s holding you back from preparing Success Factor Snapshots defining expected results for each member of your team?

Barry Deutsch

P.S. You can also put together a draft of your Success Factors for either a new role or an existing position, and we’ll be happy to conduct a complimentary review.

Are You Over-Paid?

CEO overcome with joy at their compensation

You’re probably thinking – how could Barry make such an outrageous statement. Over-paid – Ugh! I’m actually under-paid.

But wait a minute – are you being paid for the outcomes you deliver or is it one of entitlement for the position you hold?

Why am I even asking this question?

In a presentation of our “You’re NOT the Person I Hired” program to a group of Vistage CEOs and Executives today, I challenged the group to be introspective about what they were being paid for in their companies.

In a common issue raised during our program, a number of CEOs and executives complained that they were not doing what was expected of them by their board, boss, investors, family members, shareholders, and other executives. Instead they were too busy to do their work since they were doing some of the work of their team.

Why do you accept this scenario? Don’t answer that just yet. We’ll return to that question in a moment.

In most cases, when a subordinate is really good at 70-75-80% of her job, but cannot do the other 30-25-20%, you will NOT fire her – you’ll just “dummy down” the job scope. Now you’re left with a problem to solve: Who is going to do the other 30-25-20% of the work that just got lopped off her expectations?

You can’t ignore the work – it’s still must be done – you can’t sweep it under the carpet or hope it goes away. In the vast majority of cases, it’s YOU as the boss who gets to pick up the slack. No one else has the time – you’ve already overloaded the entire team by cutting the department staffing right down to the bone.

One of the greatest frustrations that I hear as I talk to 40-50 groups of CEOs and executives every year in Vistage, TEC, management retreats, and association conferences – for the past 15 years – is that they are frustrated over their own jobs – these CEOs and executives cannot do what the organization needs them to do since they are buried at least 50% of the time doing the work their subordinates should be doing.

This doesn’t pop up and bite you on the backside all of sudden. It’s a gradual declining slope of your effectiveness as a leader and impactful contributor. Over time you’ve picked up 7% of Sally’s job, 9% of Mark’s job, and 12% of Paul’s job.

It’s the same concept that Michael Gerber talked about in his best-selling book, The E-Myth. Gerber suggested that many CEOs and executives fail because they allow themselves to work too deeply in their business or department (such as doing the work their team should be doing) and not focusing on what their contributions should be based on their capability, skills, and knowledge.

Of course, you can do it faster, quicker, and more accurately than your subordinates. You’ve been in their shoes as you came up the ladder. But is that really effective leadership when you let them off the hook of accountability/responsibility and do their job for them?

Before you know it, half of what you do every day, week, and month is the work you’re team should be doing, but they’re not strong enough to do it. So, instead of taking action and putting people into roles that can deliver the required expectations, you’ve allowed yourself to become OVER-PAID for the work you do on behalf of your subordinates.

Have you allowed this scenario to play out over last few years? How many of your direct reports have allowed this to happen to them? Imagine every executive, manager, and supervisor in your business is only 50% effective and significantly over-paid since they are doing the work their subordinates should be doing.

Starting right now – what’s your plan to correct this dysfunctional element of your culture where you dummy down employee jobs, take over their responsibilities, and keep them around – especially at their old salaries. Imagine getting 70-75-80% return for every dollar you invest in salaries.

I’d love a job where I could get paid 100% for a 75% effort and impact.

Did I make an effective case for why most CEOs and executives are over-paid?

Barry Deutsch

A Candidate’s Background & Experience Are Irrelevant

Just to clarify, I said “irrelevant.” I didn't say “not important.”

Since most people have been taught interviewing is about the candidate's dbs background and experience, the interviewer tends to ask a lot of questions about the past. For example, “What have  you done in this area?”  or ” Have you ever done _____?”  Those trained in behavioral interviewing will just simply take those same questions and convert them into an example. For example, “Give me an example of where you have done X” or “Tell me about a time when you had X as an issue?”

All of this may be good stuff to know, but the fact is you really don't care about any of this. The fact is when a candidate shows up on Monday morning, you no longer care about all of the things they have done. You only care about one thing, whether or not they can do the job you are hiring them to do. That is all you really care about. Nothing else matters anymore. They may have the best background and all the right experience, but if they can't do your job, then you really don't care about their background and experience.

Have you ever hired a person that had all the right experience, interviewed well, had all the right answers, their resume read like the job description, and when you hired them they fell flat on their face? This has happened to just about everyone.

Why does this happen? I contend it is because the person's background and experience are not primary indicators of their ability to do your job. These are at best secondary and more often than not misleading indicators. Yet, these are the indicators that most hiring managers rely on.

Instead, let's focus the interview on the primary reason for interviewing, “Can they do your job?” This is the focus behind the Success Factor Hiring Methodology.  The key to a successful hire is having a process that puts the candidate in the job BEFORE you hire the candidate. It is not about determining if the candidate's background and experience fit.

This is why we believe behavioral interviewing falls short. It was once a quantum leap forward in how interviewing was performed. However, in our opinion, it too has run its course. Great interviewing is more than getting examples of the past. It is about doing your job. The tag line for behavioral interviewing, “past performance is an indicator of future performance” isn't always the case.

In our hiring methodology training workshops, we teach how to change the focus from the person's background and experience, to how will they adapt those to your job. If they can't adapt to your company and your position, then they may be a great X but they aren't the right X. That is generally what goes wrong when we hire a person with all of the right background and experience and then they fall flat on their face. The candidate wasn't able to adapt their background and experience to your company and your position.

So how do you put the candidate in the job BEFORE you hire the person?

  1. Stop asking questions that start with “have, what, have you, tell me about a time when, etc.” These are all fine to know but they should be used for probing after the example and not for the example. That is a huge difference. The famous, Who, What, When, Where and Why questions are for probing deep and not for opening questions.
  2. How questions should be used for the opening question. One of the biggest issues we face when working with hiring managers is getting them to shift to asking “How” questions. After that you can then begin probing with the five W's. For example, “How would you decrease costs by 10%?” “How would you increase gross margins by X%?” “How would you go about implementing a complete systems upgrade of our ERP system?” “How would you increase market share in your territory?” Then probe deeply with the five W's.
  3. Now the interviewer is shifting the interview from background and experience to having the candidate explain how they would apply these to do the job. If the candidate can't apply their background and experience to the new job, then one has to question whether or not they are the right person regardless of background and experience.

The reason most interviewing fails is because it is easy for a candidate to talk about their experience. Some might even embellish in this area. It is significantly different  to explain how they would apply those experiences.

You can evaluate your hiring process for free. Just download our 8-Point Hiring Methodology Assessment Scorecard. This will  help you to identify the strengths and weaknesses in your hiring process. CLICK HERE to download.

Are you committing one of the “10 Biggest Hiring Mistakes?” This research study is available to download for free. If you are committing one of these ten, it is not hard to fix so that it doesn't happen again. CLICK HERE to download the summary.

For more information on workshops that will ensure you put candidates in the job BEFORE you hire them CLICK HERE.

I welcome your thoughts and comments.

Brad Remillard