Unless you’ve been living under a rock or had your head buried in the sand, you know that change happens. You also are no doubt aware that change is happening today at breakneck speeds. We have no one to blame but ourselves because that’s what we get for being an intelligent life form. Not only do we have the power and intellect to create the need and desire for change, but we also can learn to adapt to it and implement change in ways to make work and life better for ourselves and others. Easier said than done right? There are some things you can do to make change easier.
Staying ahead of trends, or at the very least keeping up with them, is essential. Next planning, setting goals, establishing priorities, and establishing clear expectations will help put you in the arena of Best-in-Class organizations and the sooner you begin the planning in conjugation with your fiscal year, the better. Not only does it get your year off to a good start, but you now can marry ideas with your strategic plan. A good example of this is that, according to one source, “79% of executives say redesigning their performance management strategy is a high priority.” This does not occur overnight, and strong planning and alignment elements will be necessary to pull it off and when done right, the payoff is huge in terms of simpler processes, improving communications, and higher employee engagement. Speaking of employee engagement…
- Employee Engagement: Employee engagement is more than just having employees who are interested in their jobs. It’s much more complicated than that and the lack of employee engagement can rip the heart right out of any organization. In fact, one source identifies nine “pillars” that are essential to building employee engagement:
- Values ad purpose
- Health and wellness
- Well defined roles
- Relationships with colleagues
- Recognition and incentive
- Buy-in from managers
- Personal growth and development
It doesn’t take rocket science or artificial intelligence (AI) to understand that these topics are all important to developing employee engagement and therefore essential to the health and well-being and growth of your organization.
- Hiring and Recruiting: Last week I wrote an article entitled "If You Like Change & Disruption, You’ll Love 2018" and the article discusses, among other topics, how technology is making inroads into the hiring process. Organizations can now locate candidates, dubbed passive candidates, who are not even looking. One source suggests that AI helps create a more diverse workforce.
Further, technology allows the collection of data as never before. However, even technology cannot spare the disconnect between HR and management. Management wants to just put a warm body in an available spot and HR wants to follow a slower process requiring more criteria.
- Organizational Appeal: While there are a lot of candidates out there to select from, there are also a lot of places people can choose to work. Millennials, especially, will ask a lot of questions about the organization and are picky about where they chose to spend their work life. Millennials already make up around 55 million workers; therefore, it is essential to be a company where people want to work, onboarding is pleasant, and the employee experience is great.
- Talent Management: Relegating talent management to the this is important but not urgent quadrant is flies in the face of progress. Giving high performers immediate attention and placing them in a continuous guidance program will be the new norm. This means recognizing these talents and where they fit into the strategic plan early on and preparing them for your succession program.
- Team Development: Certainly, individual talent development is important, but team development is becoming increasingly as important. A big part of individual development will need to be on teaching individuals how to work as a team. Promoting team intelligence and understanding what makes a good team great will become an area of concentration.
- Worker Diversity: Earlier, in this article, AI is given credit for having the ability to help hire a more diverse workforce. Another type of diversity is having a mix of worker types. As an example, an organization might house a large percentage of full-time workers, a smaller percentage of free lancers, interns, and contractors and an even smaller percentage of part-time and remote workers.
- Unique Benefits: Offering better benefits can both attract new talent and retain current works. David Rook provides a list to consider.
- On site medical staff and day care facilities
- Free food and drinks (I assume these are non-alcoholic)
- Paternity leave, Adoption assistance, New baby fund
- House cleaning
- Spa Services
Another source suggests pet insurance.
- Budgeting: Budgeting includes more than just paper and pencil supplies. When HR strategies are at stake, there can be serious issues that can affect the bottom line such as the recent examples of sexual harassment cases. Other areas that many feel are uncontrollable, like sexual harassment, are unemployment insurance, overtime pay, and worker’s compensation. The key here is that prevention is worth a pound, or thousands of dollars of cure. Prevention comes in the form of training, walking the talk, and establishing a culture where bad behaviors and careless actions face zero tolerance.
- Reviews and Feedback: The “trend” now is toward dumping the annual review and providing continuous feedback. While admittedly most everyone on both sides of the desks dread the annual review, I’m not sure it’s demise is a good recommendation. The idea of providing continuous feedback is certainly nothing new. Dr. Herman Aguinis, has written about this concept for years and states, “Performance management is ongoing. It involves a never-ending process of setting goals and objectives, observing performance, and giving and receiving ongoing coaching and feedback (Aguinis, 2009). Dr. Aguinis is not, at least in this reference, suggesting discarding the annual review. The annual review and continuous feedback work hand in hand to create a high-performance culture.
- Training: According to an article on Forbes.com, the half shelf life of a skill today is only five years. This is due to the rapid changes in technology and the fact that technology will be performing many of the tasks humans currently do. AT&T is conducting a huge initiative to look toward the future and retrain its employees. Best-in-Class organizations provide training on a regular basis addressing the needs of the future.
Graphic Credit: BigStock.com Copyright: ALotOfPeople
Aguinis, H. (2009). Performance Management. In D. Parker (Ed), Performance Management, p. 2. Saddle River, New Jersey: Pearson Prentice Hall
Karter, B. (2017, October). 10 HR Trends You Must Implement Before 2018. Employee Connect.com
Kelly, S. & Murphy, J. (2017, October) The Definitive Guide to Employee Engagement. Snacknatin.com
Rook, D. (2015, September). 20 Unique Employee Benefits That Boost Employee Morale. J.P. Griffin Group
Schawbel, D. (2017, November). 10 Workplace rends You’ll See in 2018. Forbes.com
Weinfurt, A. (2017, October). What You Need to Know to Jumpstart Your 2018 HR Strategies. HighGround.com