I have heard a lot of business owners and managers say, “We can’t find good, hardworking, driven, reliable staff.”
Here are four key principles and strategies we use daily to answer that question:
- The Ultimate Filter: The ultimate filter you can use to assess drive is the “do they want it more for them than I want it for them?” What this means is that if you can see the opportunity for one of your staff to knock it out of the park, you get excited and you push them because you see great opportunity. This might drive you crazy because you see it so clearly, they can do it and they can rise to the top, but ultimately, they don’t because you want it more for them than they want it for them.
Some questions to ask yourself when trying to identify if they do or if they don’t:
- Does this individual want it more for themselves than you want it for them?
- Does this individual show up on time to meetings and to work?
- Does this individual come to work every day?
- Do they complete the activity or action required to get the desired result?
- Are they committed to accomplishing team- and self-goals?
We often discount our staff prior to discounting the quality of our expectation, training, and process. It is our responsibility as the owner or upper management to supply our people with the tools and knowledge to perform the job with confidence and know how. Before making the claim that this person isn’t hard working, driven, or reliable, find out if it’s really just your expectations, training, or process.
- Expectations: You must outline with your staff their roles and responsibilities, and any expectations you have for completing those roles. This is a big mistake we make when we assume our staff know and understand what is expected from them. When you are setting expectations, you must explain why these expectations are a must. You might ask “how do I know they understand?” The simple answer to that you need to ask a simple question “Joe, I want you to explain what the expectations are so I understand what I have explained.” When you have asked this question, you will find out very quickly if they understood what you have asked of them and where they might not be clear. This is so important, as I often see people walking away from a conversation not clear on what has been discussed. Set your expectations and ask to ensure everyone is clear on the conversation.
- Training: You must train your people on every aspect of the roles and responsibilities they oversee. We can’t take anything for granted if we expect our people to perform to the desired levels. We must be as thorough as possible, ensuring our training is video recorded or documented on paper. This arsenal of training is crucial, as your staff can refer back to it during their training period. You must keep your training materials up to date!
- Process: Now that we have identified the individual’s drive, set expectations and pro-actively trained, we must identify if we have a process issue. The way to get consistency for our customers and staff is to have a set-in-stone process for delivering on the activities required by your staff. This means every time this “activity” is complete it is completed the same time every time. If you don’t have a process for delivering your products and services consistently, you can’t expect your staff to deliver consistently. This process should be explained in your training period and drilled in. If your company feels disorganized and chaotic, chances are you don’t have a clear-cut process for your people to follow.
If you have considered and executed on steps 1, 2, 3, and 4 thoroughly, then you can identify whether you have an expectation, training, process, and finally, people problem. Oftentimes you don’t have a people problem, but you have a framework for your people to follow that results in false expectations and poor performance. Set your people up to succeed, ensure they understand, and then decided if you have a people issue.
Please let us know if this article was useful or if you have more questions surrounding this topic!