Productive or Not?

Entrepreneurs, are your employees productive? How do you know? Claiming to have good employees is one thing, but backing it up with data is essential.

Do you establish metrics to measure productivity directly based on your annual company goals?  Are the metrics simple and easily understandable? Do you communicate them effectively to your employees? How often do you post or discuss measured results? Are there periodic meetings to analyze performance and develop methods to improve productivity?

“Doing more with less” is a nice slogan, but proving it with productivity measurement data makes it more meaningful.

If you do measure productivity of your employees and do obtain successful results, have you aligned your reward systems to be in line with productivity improvements?

Improving productivity of your employees is a sure way to deliver more to the bottom line. Are you doing that? If not, why not?

Ravi Patel

http://www.patelcfoservices.com

 

Attitude Adjustment

Do employee attitudes affect performance? Most likely.

Who performs better? Employees with positive attitudes about themselves, towards the company and their fellow employees have the capacity to perform at a higher level.

So what could Entrepreneurs do to improve the attitudes of their employees?

First, have an understanding on how your employees feel about the company and their fellow employees. Using your HR department to conduct formal and informal surveys could help this effort. If economical, have an objective, outside party conduct such surveys.

Supervisors should be sensitive to the problems faced by employees outside their work and how they might be affecting their performance. If the performance of an employees does not meet expectations, determine whether it is related to the abilities or skills of the employee or whether it is related to his/her attitude.

Then, Entrepreneurs based on collected data should develop programs that improve employee attitudes thereby enhancing performance. It is by no means a one-time effort, but should be reassessed and revised  periodically.

Ravi Patel

www.patelCFOservices.com

Encourage Thinking

Entrepreneurs generally “think outside the box” and come up with new, innovative ideas. They seek under-served niches in the marketplace and find unique ways to fulfill unmet or unrecognized needs.

Once they start and grow the business, do Entrepreneurs still foster the culture of “Thinking Outside the Box” in their employees?

An Entrepreneur’s original initiative due to creative thinking is also applicable to his/her organization. If the culture of the company is one of innovation and finding unique ways of doing things better and faster, it will promote not only continued success for the company but also tremendous job satisfaction for employees.

Empower your employees and and encourage free thinking to come up with creative ways to perform their jobs better and improve processes in the company. Entrepreneurs should think outside the box for this employee performance management philosophy.

Ravi Patel

http://www.patelCFOservices.com

It is About Attitude

Does your employee’s attitude have anything to do with performance? Of course, it does!

Employees with positive attitudes about themselves, towards the company and their fellow employees have the capability to perform at a higher level.

So what do Entrepreneurs need to do to improve the attitudes of their employees?

It is important to have an understanding on how your employees feel about the company and their fellow employees. Using your HR department to conduct formal and informal surveys could help this effort. If affordable, it might be a good idea to have an objective, outside party conduct such surveys.

Supervisors should be sensitive to the problems faced by employees outside their work and how they might be affecting their performance. If the performance of an employees does not meet expectations, determine whether it is related to the abilities or skills of the employee or whether it is related to his/her attitude.

Entrepreneurs based on collected data should develop programs that improve employee attitudes thereby enhancing performance. It is by no means a one-time effort, but should be reassessed and revised  periodically.

Ravi Patel

www.patelCFOservices.com

 

Identifying Top Performers

There are several ways to classify employee performance  in your company. Most traditional ways focus on actual performance against expectations or against established goals.

Here is a different perspective. Entrepreneurs should categorize employees into three categories – those who add direct value to your business, those that are neutral or add indirect value, and those that reduce company value.

Clearly, you should pay special attention to the first category by training and motivating them so that they continue to add value. Have a strong retention program for these individuals so that they don’t leave your organizations.

Deal immediately with people who reduce the value of your company. These are the bad apples that need to be removed from the company as soon as possible.

The people who are neutral as far as their contribution to company value need to be either moved to the category of employees that add value by training, or red-circled if they are providing a support function to the first category of employees. If there is a chance that they would reduce the value to your company, they need to be transitioned out.

Identifying the three categories of employees and dealing with them appropriately will go a long way in building the value of your company.

Ravi Patel

www.patelCFOservices.com

Should You Let People Go?

Is firing people wrong? Depending on the circumstances firing a person or a group of employees might be necessary for an Entrepreneur.

A continually poor performer in any enterprise becomes a liability to the other team members and the organization. If there is no change in the employee’s performance after repeated attempts to improve it, it would be wise to part company. Similarly if a third-party service provider does not consistently provide excellent service there is cause for firing that provider.

In a broader sense, for the survival of a company and a majority of its employees if a few employees have to be let go (after all other options have been exhausted), it is most often the right thing to do. As Spock used to say in Star Trek, “.. for the survival of the many, a few have to suffer.”

Firing people for spite, revenge, uneconomic, or irrational reasons is never appropriate, but letting go of people for the right rationale is not necessarily wrong.

Ravi Patel

http://www.patelCFOservices.com

Confronting Performance Issues

Are you a procrastinator when it comes to dealing with performance issues?

Entrepreneurs, like many other managers, do not like to confront employees regarding poor performance. Entrepreneurs, especially, take a softer view with certain employees that started when the company was established. How can they after all be tough on people who supported them when the times were bad?

Not dealing with performance issues in a timely manner not only hurts the company, but is a disservice to the employee. If the employee is a potential long-term player, it is better to get them on track sooner by making him/her aware of the deficiencies and help the employee develop and work on a plan to correct the shortfalls.

If performance issues are not addressed promptly, it creates in the entrepreneurial company a sense that the Entrepreneur is partial towards certain non-performers. Obviously, a poor performer is readily visible in a small company and not dealing with such issues creates a situation with poor team morale.

Entrepreneurs need to create a culture where performance issues are dealt with promptly, either by implementing a corrective plan to improve performance or managing the consistently poor performer out of the company.

Ravi Patel

http://www.patelCFOservices.com

Attitude Improvement for Performance Enhancement

Does your employee’s attitude have anything to do with performance? Of course!

Employees with positive attitudes about themselves, towards the company and their fellow employees have the capacity to perform at a higher level.

So what do Entrepreneurs need to do to improve the attitudes of their employees?

It is important to have an understanding on how your employees feel about the company and their fellow employees. Using your HR department to conduct formal and informal surveys could help this effort. If affordable, it might be a good idea to have an objective, outside party conduct such surveys.

Supervisors should be sensitive to the problems faced by employees outside their work and how they might be affecting their performance. If the performance of an employees does not meet expectations, determine whether it is related to the abilities or skills of the employee or whether it is related to his/her attitude.

Entrepreneurs based on collected data should develop programs that improve employee attitudes thereby enhancing performance. It is by no means a one-time effort, but should be reassessed and revised  periodically.

Ravi Patel

www.patelCFOservices.com

Setting Standards

“The quality of a leader is reflected in the standards they set for themselves.” – Ray Kroc

Great leaders set high standards for themselves. The growth of McDonald’s was in large part due to the quality, efficiency and customer service standards established by Ray Kroc.

Entrepreneurs too need to set and live by commendable personal standards for themselves so that they can demonstrate a high level of leadership to inspire their employees. How often have we seen leaders who ask their followers to do one thing while they do something else? How does that provide leadership by example?

If an Entrepreneur desires to set high standards of ethics and performance for their companies, they first need to set for themselves high-reaching standards. However, that is not enough! Entrepreneurs need to then adhere to their established standards and demonstrate via actions their commitment to such uplifting principles.

Leadership in this area is truly by example. If an Entrepreneur establishes a pattern of behavior that meets his/her lofty standards, then it will be easier to set high standards for the company and employees. It helps to inspire people by actions and then demand high standards of excellence and hold their followers accountable.

Ravi Patel

www.patelCFOservices.com