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Posts Tagged ‘Drive Business Performance

I just read this article by Jessica Leber via the Fast Company website.  I found it to be extremely interesting and quite factual.   There are so many companies out there spanning multiple industries whose business depends on excellent customer service from its employees.   In most situations the low-wage employee is the first contact a customer encounters.   This employee is a representative of the company and in most cases responsible for creating the “first impression”.

It is a fact that people are a company’s most valued asset so this “Hot New Business Strategy” Jessica writes about definitely deserves some merit – Enjoy!

http://bit.ly/1O2Uw0n

Lee Koren is certified as a Professional in Human Resources (PHR) and Master Trainer in Behavioural Interviewing.  Her expertise are recruitment, selection and career transition.

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If I’ve said it once, I have said it thousands of times over the past 25 years “People are a company’s best asset, good people drive business performance”.  Think about a company that is struggling right now – if you could look deeper within that corporation how many of the top ten reasons companies fail would you discover?

  • Poor or no selection process – internal and external
  • No retention strategy to keep the high potentials
  • Ineffective compensation and bonus programs
  • High cost associate with poor hires
  • Lack of effective Performance Management Program
  • Insufficient succession planning
  • Little or no career development
  • Lack of qualified senior level management
  • Leaders who lack the training to be leaders
  • Broken link between HR and the business

It is a known fact that companies who have an all-encompassing Talent Management Program which includes a strong selection process coupled with a good performance management program, career development and succession planning are overall more successful.   Attracting, motivating and retaining a productive workforce requires more than a competitive salary and bonus, it takes letting the employee know what is it in for her/him – what are the “total rewards” of working for the company.

Lilly Canada is one of Canada’s top pharmaceutical companies; it is the Canadian affiliate of the major American pharmaceutical company, Eli Lilly & Company.   According to a case study by Bersin & Associates conducted in 2011 Lilly is known for bringing in best-in-class strategies and behaviors to its global talent management programs.  Its talent management strategy is tightly integrated with its succession management strategy.   Subsequently, when data from the employee survey showed room for improvement in its rewards and recognition process Lilly took action.   Lilly already had a rewards and recognition program in place administered by management (basically gift cards); however it was evident by the results of the survey that there was definite room for improvement.  

They wanted a solution that would recognize and reward not only from management down but sideways, up and down as well as peer to peer, subordinate to supervisor and supervisor to subordinate.  Plus they wanted something easy to use and roll out; with the strong involvement of their human resource department the “I Love Rewards” program was launched in 2010, the gift and dinner cards were replaced by a performance-based points system, the solution mirrored the performance leadership behaviours in Lilly’s performance management program and code of conduct.  Within a year the rewards program was determined a success based on employee and leadership feedback – it has given the company another way to track employee satisfaction and engagement.  In fact, Lilly plans to use the data to evaluate and correlate business impacts such as employee retention, manager and employee turnover rates, high-potential turnover, sales performance and more.    By taking action, Lilly has improved employee satisfaction which in turn improves productivity and innovation which then drives better business performance.

Every company needs at least one exceptional performer who can motivate, inspire and enable innovation.   Take Apple for instance, Steve Jobs was a phenomenal leader and under his leadership the company grew leaps and bounds and today its products are top of the market.   During Steve’s reign Apple maintained a strong Talent Management Program – it encouraged its employees to excel – to always focus on the product and how to make it better.  Employees were never bored, once finished working on a product they were off to work on the next one.  Apple offered a very leisure dress code, in fact one employee comments:    “Diversity and dress code are the best parts of the company culture as well as the emotional energy around the product that drives everyone”.   There it is again – “Talented People drive business performance”    One can only assume that Apple put a strong succession plan in place for Tim Cook.  Time will tell if he is yet another exceptional leader. 

According to the “2011 Report on Emerging Canadian Software Companies” CEO’s acknowledge the talent race is on and for the first time, in a long time, access to talented resources emerged as a significant challenge.   A full 44% of CEO’s listed recruiting new talent and management team members as their biggest issue.  In 2010 40% of CEO’s indicating that developing the skills and training of their staff was their biggest talent management issue.   The top three most popular key performance indicators used by CEOs in 2010 were revenue based:

  • Total revenue
  • Revenue growth
  • Recurring revenue

Ahh the preverbal “bottom line”, it is a double-edged sword.  To achieve strong revenue results it comes down to having a talented workforce driving business performance.

Ok, so I could go on and on but I think you get the picture.  Yes I know, it takes time and talent to develop selection strategies, performance management programs, etc., etc., and yes, time is money.  However, in this case it is money the company may be losing by not investing the time and talent in these areas. Think about it!

Revenue Growth =Talented Leadership + Talented/Motivated Employees

Lee Koren is certified as a Professional in Human Resources by the Society for Human Resource Management along with Lead Master Trainer in Behavioural Interviewing.  Her passion and strength is selection strategy to include recruitment and sourcing.  Lee holds the position of Senior Search Consultant at the Ian Martin Group within the professional and executive search division.  In addition she is the owner of Selection Strategy.


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