The Point: At Tip of the Spear, we know a Leadership Challenge when we see it… You’ve got the leadership challenge on hand if you have the wrong people in the wrong positions. In other words, your business is in trouble. Worse yet, having the wrong people in the right positions can also be detrimental to your business! So with such a focus on business processes or technology that can “revolutionize” the marketplace, why do so many leaders focus on everything but the people they employ to actively participate in their business? In this post, we’ll investigate exactly what’s at stake for you/your business and several tips on how to leverage them fully. Think of it as insuring that the right people are in the right positions at the right time (each and every time)… Enjoy!
Employee Engagement (Shouldn’t It be Disengagement?)
I just saw Josh Bersin (formerly of his own fame, now of Deloitte) and a host of other “thought” leaders at the Glassdoor Employment Brand Summit for leadership development present on their take on the concept of “employment branding” or why is it that an employee should be so compelled to want to come and work at your place of employment. Think of it as a new spin on the employee engagement we’ve all heard so much of lately (If you haven’t heard of employee engagement, you’ve got bigger leadership challenge and leadership development issues). Here’s what’s at stake:
- Gallup reports that roughly 13% of all employees are highly engaged
- Glassdoor (of conference sponsor) reports that roughly 55% of employees would recommend their organizations to others to work at.
- Many more employees from various employee engagement surveys report in “off the record” fashion that they would not say they were “happy” with their employers (However they wouldn’t say so “on the record” for official employee engagement stats.
Employment Branding – Bringing Sexy Back to Employee Engagement
There is also a growing trend of recruiters crying of “talent shortages” that are scaring the human resources world. Worse yet (and back to our new “employment branding” terminology) if your people are not happy and engaged, you’re going to have a hard time selling your company to potential applicants/recruits.
Applicants that ultimately do go to work for organizations after sometimes unnecessary and lengthy interview processes, report that they have automobile purchase analogous “buyers remorse” 51% of the time and leave the organization within the first year 81% of the time… STAGGERING! How many times have you heard “I wanted to come to work here, but the recruiting process was like buying a used car” from your newly hired team members.
I remember a time when the leader I worked with wanted me to “sell the dream” to recruits. If they could see it, smell it, and almost taste it they’d want in was his perspective. He couldn’t have been more accurate… We were able to “close” or recruit nearly 90% of the applicants we came in contact with. Unfortunately, employee turnover hovered near 300% annually!
Authenticity, Honesty, Clarity are Employee Engagement Keys
So what’s the answer to this employment branding and employee engagement issues? There’s got to be a logical explanation to resolve such a leadership challenge. Fortunately, as complicated as these issues may be, their solutions are rather straight forward and uncomplicated. It appears as though a return to authentic leadership, which characteristics of honesty, trust, communication clarity, and an action/feedback/pivot process are all that’s needed (Note: While simple to say in one breath, each is in and of itself a surmountable task).
Of course, this authenticity, honesty, and clarity all starts with the recruiting process. If recruiters can’t state these as well as share examples of each with potential candidates, the organization is going to miss out on talent.
While employment branding and employee engagement should be front/present on every leader’s mind, the ability to take action on the characteristics of authenticity, honesty, and clarity are key to making dramatic improvements in each category. Whether you are looking for entry-level associates, or senior leadership in your organization, the ability to have everyone on the same page and executing the instructions from that page will show candidates exactly what type of organization you are.