How to get the results needed from your employees!

Should you spend your next 40 hours working on your employee’s strengths or their weaknesses?

I can’t say much more the post below does it, so well.

Enjoy the Post,  John

All Things Workplace: Strengths, Weaknesses, and Engagement

What engages you most: building on your talent or overcoming what you see as some “gap” in your inherent abilities?

Where do you get the bigger payoff?

My friend and employee engagement guru David Zinger cited a Gallup Management Journal article in one of his posts that reflected these findings:

1. If your manager primarily ignores you your chances of being actively disengaged are 40%

2. If your manager focuses on your weaknesses your chances of being actively disengaged are 22%

3. If you manager focuses on your strengths your chances of being actively disengaged are only 1%.

I think these factoids are powerful in their simplicity. They point the way to what managers and their people should be paying attention to if they’re really concerned with being engaged.

First: Managers would be wise to initiate conversation and discussion with all of their people. Otherwise, the numbers show that they’ll lose the active commitment of nearly half. Note to employees: I know that you know that your manager is supposed to know this. Well, clearly they may not. If you aren’t getting attention, initiate a conversation with your boss about how important it is to you. Some people, by nature, don’t initiate those things. Then, if you find out that this isn’t a department or organization where you can flourish, you have some solid information for making career decisions. And if you do make a difference by initiating the discussion and see it continue, you’ve helped at least two people.

Second: Here is a way to start thinking about where to invest energy: Building Strengths or Overcoming Weaknesses. I’ll use a sales example.

Let’s say you are a sales rep who has a track record of getting appointments and a presentation with 60% of the people on whom you call. But your ability to close the sale is 25%. You have been a sales rep at different companies for 18 years.(Stick with me, I’ve been a sales manager). What you now know is that you’re strength lies in building the initial relationship and being able to get in front of the client. No matter how hard you’ve worked at closing the sale, you’ve never gotten above 25%. As your sales manager, I’d start thinking: If I help you focus on getting appointments and presentations–and you improve just 10%–then I have someone who can get us in front of a prospective client 66% of the time. If I start focusing on your closing deficit and you manage to improve 10%, you still only get to a 27.5% success rate. So I decide that I –or another “closer” with a high percentage of success–will come along to the presentations. You become the “star” door opener and we find another “star” closer.

I’d be crazy to spend my time and energy focusing on your weakness. It would be the same as telling Yo Yo Ma “You’re a phenomenal musician. I know you are a cellist, but we’re going to put all of our energy into making you a great tuba player.”

Thought for Today: Let’s talk with people about “What They Can’t Not Do.”

Below is a link to Steve Roesler’s article in his blog:

All Things Workplace: Strengths, Weaknesses, and Engagement.

3 thoughts on “How to get the results needed from your employees!

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