Share your vision in 2012

Jan. 1, 2020
It is the start of a new year. For most of us, this is another opportunity to reinvent, revamp, redesign or just stop procrastinating.

It is the start of a new year. For most of us, this is another opportunity to reinvent, revamp, redesign or just stop procrastinating on something that we innately know is important and demands our attention. If you are short on ideas, let me give you one that could pay off in more ways than you can imagine. How about reconsidering what you know about your employees? Did you know that the primary reason employees leave has very little to do with what you pay them? Turns out that most employees have a less than clear picture of what is expected of them. So the real reason they leave is that they do not share your vision. I would put myself in the ranks of managers who thought my employees understood why I come to work everyday. Turns out they knew less than I thought they did. Keep in mind I have worked with the same guys for many years. In a few of cases, more than 15 years.

So the question becomes how do you share your vision in a way that makes you appear like a master of industry and not a tele-evangelist? Here are a few ideas I have come up with. Please feel free to share yours and I will post them on my blog on Workshop.Search-Autoparts.com.

Employee manual
Sometimes it is the most fundamental things that can cause friction. What time do you expect your employees to arrive and leave work each day? What is the policy on sick days? As an employer, I find that these sorts of things are my biggest complaints with employees. Amazingly, we have an employee manual that we provide. The reason we still have the problems? We don’t require them to read it and sign off on it. Sure, there will be folks who sign off that have never opened it past page one, but if they do get into a problem, it will be pretty hard to blame you.

Take them to lunch
Not comfortable with those one on one conversations? How about popping for lunch once in a while and pointing out things that your folks are doing that are right in line with your vision of how the company should work? For me, it has worked well to flesh out the story a little bit more without going overboard. I do so love my soapbox. I think it is easier to give them bits and pieces of your corporate vision to assemble when they are clearly ready for it than to attempt a complete download that may be only partially assimilated.

PAGE 2

The workshop
Somewhere along the line, much of Corporate America got the idea that it was not fun to get their staff together and workshop ideas that are mission critical to a business. That could be because many of the ‘facilitators’ of these meetings had some magic key to making every thing work that revolved around some stupid anagram that was supposed to be easily remembered. Mostly their message made employees feel stupid and was their own personal ego trip, rather than giving a business what it really needed — a little grease for the wheels.

Your employees are not stupid. They are in a position to observe things you are not. Sit them down, tell them what you are trying to accomplish and ask them what works and what doesn’t. I am almost certain they will surprise you. There is a little entrepreneur in all of us.

Call it the back way through the front door but these types of activities will not only help your employees understand what you need from them, it will also help you understand what they need from you. A very smart man told me about 25 years ago that we have internal and external customers. If the internal customers are happy and on mission, the external customers will be happy too. There may be a lot of Americans looking for work, but that does not devalue the people who work for you in any way. A reliable staff that “gets it” is invaluable, particularly in times like these.

It is the start of a new year. For most of us, this is another opportunity to reinvent, revamp, redesign or just stop procrastinating on something that we innately know is important and demands our attention. If you are short on ideas, let me give you one that could pay off in more ways than you can imagine. How about reconsidering what you know about your employees? Did you know that the primary reason employees leave has very little to do with what you pay them? Turns out that most employees have a less than clear picture of what is expected of them. So the real reason they leave is that they do not share your vision. I would put myself in the ranks of managers who thought my employees understood why I come to work everyday. Turns out they knew less than I thought they did. Keep in mind I have worked with the same guys for many years. In a few of cases, more than 15 years.

So the question becomes how do you share your vision in a way that makes you appear like a master of industry and not a tele-evangelist? Here are a few ideas I have come up with. Please feel free to share yours and I will post them on my blog on Workshop.Search-Autoparts.com.

Employee manual
Sometimes it is the most fundamental things that can cause friction. What time do you expect your employees to arrive and leave work each day? What is the policy on sick days? As an employer, I find that these sorts of things are my biggest complaints with employees. Amazingly, we have an employee manual that we provide. The reason we still have the problems? We don’t require them to read it and sign off on it. Sure, there will be folks who sign off that have never opened it past page one, but if they do get into a problem, it will be pretty hard to blame you.

Take them to lunch
Not comfortable with those one on one conversations? How about popping for lunch once in a while and pointing out things that your folks are doing that are right in line with your vision of how the company should work? For me, it has worked well to flesh out the story a little bit more without going overboard. I do so love my soapbox. I think it is easier to give them bits and pieces of your corporate vision to assemble when they are clearly ready for it than to attempt a complete download that may be only partially assimilated.

PAGE 2

The workshop
Somewhere along the line, much of Corporate America got the idea that it was not fun to get their staff together and workshop ideas that are mission critical to a business. That could be because many of the ‘facilitators’ of these meetings had some magic key to making every thing work that revolved around some stupid anagram that was supposed to be easily remembered. Mostly their message made employees feel stupid and was their own personal ego trip, rather than giving a business what it really needed — a little grease for the wheels.

Your employees are not stupid. They are in a position to observe things you are not. Sit them down, tell them what you are trying to accomplish and ask them what works and what doesn’t. I am almost certain they will surprise you. There is a little entrepreneur in all of us.

Call it the back way through the front door but these types of activities will not only help your employees understand what you need from them, it will also help you understand what they need from you. A very smart man told me about 25 years ago that we have internal and external customers. If the internal customers are happy and on mission, the external customers will be happy too. There may be a lot of Americans looking for work, but that does not devalue the people who work for you in any way. A reliable staff that “gets it” is invaluable, particularly in times like these.