Your People Are Your Business

I shared this information via a talk at  the Cobb Chamber Business University.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that every year 1.5 billion businesses are started by people that expect to be successful. Within five years, over half of those new businesses are gone. If your organization is using a solid process to attract, select, develop and retain your top talent, you stand a better chance of being one of the survivors.

Unless you are a Soloprenure, you probably have employees. As you add more people to your company you are adding more complexity which sometimes can lead to more chaos. Successful companies thrive because they value growing people, customers and profits.

If you take care of your people your people will take care of your customers, not the other way around. Businesses owners, CEO and executive teams want to know, how they get their staff to have the same urgency and passion about the business as they do.  The reality is they don’t. As an owner or executive in a company, you live in a very different world.

* You get up in the morning and decide exactly when you are going to get into work.
* You decide every day what you are going to do and how you are going to do it.
* You leave for lunch when you want and come back when you feel like it.
* You don’t worry so much about every word that comes out of your mouth when you speak to your staff.

Your employees live in a very different world.
* They come and go based on someone else’s guidelines.
* They have to do what they are told to do every day when they come to work.
* They have no control over how much money they make.
* If they encounter you during the day, they panic about what to say and how to say it.

By creating a dialog with your employees you will engage them to be a more active participant in the business. Studies have shown that the more engaged employees are, the more satisfied they are. If employees are happy, then your profits increase.

The dialog process:
Meet with your employees (or a manager meets with a direct report) for sixty days. During the first meeting, explain the new process you are using. You want to give the employee a forum to discuss what is happening in their world. The three questions you are going to ask are:
* What did you do last week that you are proud of?
* What would you like to learn next week?
* How can I help you?

By doing this at the same time every week for sixty days, you will find that your employees start to feel as much passion for the business as you do and eventually you might find that they are taking on more responsibility on their own, because they want to.

Vicki Z. Lauter is Managing Partner with Strategic Human Insights a Talent Strategy Consulting Firm that helps business owners, CEO’s and Executive teams, select, develop and retain top talent in healthcare, technology and mid-market segments.