2013 – 2014 surveys provide the following picture of today’s workforce.
- 70% of employees say they are motivated to do their very best1
- 57% would recommend their organization to others as a good place to work1
- 27% intend to seek employment elsewhere1
- 50% report that the organization values employee recognition1
- 40% report sufficient opportunities for advancement1
How is your organization measuring up?
Team members are increasingly becoming more important for US business. In the 1930’s, 76% of GDP was outside the service sector. A majority of business was focused in manufacturing where the deliverable was often a product of a machine. These machines delivered the same result day in and day out. When they broke we fixed them and they continued on.
Today, 68% of the U.S. GDP or 4 out of 5 jobs is from the service sector2. These services are generated by human beings that have the power to think. The 1950’s management style of “When I want your opinion, I will tell you what it is” will no longer work. Hence, the results of the above survey where we find an alarming number of our team members turn off their brains when they come to work. As leaders, it is our job to nurture, educate, and provide opportunity to expand their horizons. Investing in the team is the only way to grow and expand our companies and success. Change can be scary, but a requirement for survival.
As business leaders we are often distracted from our primary task of working on our business by the constant firefighting of today’s emergencies. However, we must focus on the important and not just the urgent. To get more out of our team members, we must:
- Replace short term reaction with long term planning.
- Focus not on how many we make, but how well we make them.
- Institute a culture of leadership and not supervision. Leadership focuses on process, supervision focuses on targets.
- Sharpen the saw – institute education and self-improvement for everyone.
- Convert individual knowledge and experiences into institutional knowledge. The worst place to store business information is in the human brain.
Edward Deming’s work found that 94% of all problems in the workplace are problems not with the workers, not with performance, but with the system. By focusing on the processes and systems that deliver repeatable outcomes, we are able to continually sharpen the saw with a passion for continuous improvement that results in an engaged team, corporate growth and individual success.
1 American Psychological Association, Psychologically Healthy Workplace Program; APA’s 2014 Work & Well-Being Survey; U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics.
2 Office of the United States Trade Representative