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Human resources. where to find the stones and walk on water!


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Job Title: VP Human Resources. Job Function: recruiting, labor relations, compensation, benefits, payroll, computer skills, organizational development, support sales and safety departments, tons of paperwork, create regular reports, Spanish a plus, oversee communications, boost loyalty while retaining employees, manage multiple tasks in spite of frequent interruptions, solve every problem, ability to walk on water.

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Human resources. where to find the stones and walk on water!

  1. 1. Taico® :: 67 Patterson Village Ct., Bldg F :: Patterson, NY 12563 :: 845-228-GIFT (4438) :: fax: 845-228-5136 ::© 2012 Taico® Incentive Services Inc.Human Resources. Where to find the stones and walk on water!Job Title: VP Human Resources.Job Function: recruiting, labor relations, compensation, benefits,payroll, computer skills, organizational development, support salesand safety departments, tons of paperwork, create regular reports,Spanish a plus, oversee communications, boost loyalty whileretaining employees, manage multiple tasks in spite of frequentinterruptions, solve every problem, ability to walk on water.OK, so I added the "walk on water" part. Thats what we hearsometimes from HR executives we work with. It often feels like this.When you know where the stones are, you can easily follow them underfoot to safe harbor. As one ex-military friendBill M. told me, "If youre infantry youre the units direct value component, everyone else is support."In the manufacturing environment, you are of direct value to the company being on the plant floor building aproduct or selling it to customers. Otherwise youre just part of the support team. In hospitals and medicalorganizations if you are the nurse or physician, you are directly caring and healing patients.Your work has direct value. The remaining personnel are considered a supportive role. The point is that in everyorganization there are individuals whos activities add direct value and those who provide a supportive function. Inthe past, HRs role was more a supportive one.Today you are being asked to do more and be of direct value in ways that impact profits and performance. Forexample, one of HRs biggest challenges is retaining great employees and improving loyalty. More than ever, ofdirect value to an organizations financial health. Here are some important ways to engage, retain and encourageloyality from employees.Losing talented workers can reach far and deep into your organizations value. Hiring and training replacementscount for your direct costs. These costs might include, increase in unemployment tax, advertising for the position,costs of interviewing, recruiting and training a new replacement, paying an agency to hire interim temporary helpand more.Share This
  2. 2. Taico® :: 67 Patterson Village Ct., Bldg F :: Patterson, NY 12563 :: 845-228-GIFT (4438) :: fax: 845-228-5136 ::© 2012 Taico® Incentive Services Inc.No doubt it can cost you substantially to replace workers because of the productivity losses when someone leaves ajob, the costs of hiring and training a new employee, and the slower productivity until the new employee gets up tospeed in their new job.Lost business and productivity become your indirect costs. Client relationships can be strained or even discontinuewhen a long time employee leaves.The Congressional Joint Economic Committees “Meta-Analysis: Cost of Employee Turnover as a Percentage ofEmployee Salary” concluded that implementing workplace policies that benefit workers and help boost employeeretention are not simply a “nice” thing for businesses to do for their employees. Maintaining a stable workforce andreducing employee turnover makes good business sense and can result in significant cost savings.Research conducted by Heather Boushey and Sarah Jane Glyn for the Center for American Progress state thatemployee turnover costs businesses about one-fifth or more of a worker’s salary to replace that worker.Engaging your employees will retain them, build loyalty and improve performance.So, what is engagement really?Engagement is implementing ideas that will create employee enthusiasm for their work and for showing up at yourworkplace. Using communication tools to engage and inform your people about your mission and goals will connectthem to your message and give them a sense that they are vital to everyones success. As your companys HR Chief,you then offer a contract to your employees that elicits specific positive behaviors. Behaviors such as attendance andeven wellness.Still largely misunderstood, engagement is not about throwing cash or trinkets or even pay hikes at your team inhopes that they will magically come alive and perform for you. The Pavlovs dog incentive approach is archaic,demeaning, ineffective and of yesterday.It is more about striking up a new contract where you and senior management invest emotionally in your workforce.If done right, employees will make a similar emotional investment. A sort of “discretionary effort” is brought intotheir work often translating into loyalty and superior performance. I heard it described by a colleague as: "ourorganization will do things designed to make your jobs (and perhaps your lives) more meaningful. In return you bringyour hearts and minds to your work."Share This
  3. 3. Taico® :: 67 Patterson Village Ct., Bldg F :: Patterson, NY 12563 :: 845-228-GIFT (4438) :: fax: 845-228-5136 ::© 2012 Taico® Incentive Services Inc.In this example we were brought in to help a call center identify and solve their chronic turnover problem. Thecenter was set up to take calls in response to a radio product offer. The larger the order taken, the more theemployee would make. The commission was generous but it didnt stop the large numbers of workers from quitting.So of course the companys performance criteria was how to retain workers. When I visited the call center room itlooked bland and colorless. The employees acted upbeat and generally arrived to work on time. When questioned,they told me they liked their jobs.Citing no big complaints but only saying the reason some were leaving was a competitor was offering moremoney.On closer examination, it was clear there was little or no contact with the manager. He greeted employeeswhen they arrived but mostly remained in his office. To his credit, however, he expressed a willingness to accept ourobservations and implement our suggestions. To me it was clear his people quit because they were disengaged. Likemillions of other employees, there is a basic need to believe their job is important and contributing daily to thecompany. When that doesnt exist people quit.The heavy consequences of a disengaged workforce have been well documented. Disengagement can rob yourresources and undermine your companys mission. Many organizations are still in the dark about this. The assistanceof a professional incentive expert can help you design a positive, uplifting program with measurable results.Collaboration is a next step beyond just regular engagement.To address this companys turnover situation, we suggested the company provide everyone with a short, friendly,positive, interactive training session sharing the companys vision and values. Immediately employees wereinterested in sharing their ideas. Employee engagement included the manager being available for coaching on bestways to handle calls and present product buying opportunities. Based on the general age group of his team, born1964 1981, we suggested a peer to peer recognition program for goals accomplished and going the extra mile.Whether its for a retention initiative or service award recogntion, generation X and Y are generally individuals thatconsider themselves independent, self-directed, committed, resourceful, yet skeptical of authority and institutions ingeneral. They seek an exciting and challenging environment. Hence a peer to peer program fit them well. Weprovided the company with unlimited award choices and every employee with their own on-line bank where theycould earn reward points and redeem them for merchandize, travel and experiences One reward included the groupas a whole earning an event day.Share This
  4. 4. Taico® :: 67 Patterson Village Ct., Bldg F :: Patterson, NY 12563 :: 845-228-GIFT (4438) :: fax: 845-228-5136 ::© 2012 Taico® Incentive Services Inc.That day provided choices such as being a NASCAR driver, flying in a Hot Air Ballon, Jumping out of a plane or justspending the time at a fair. The trophy and unifying value of this experience was enormous.To add a warmer more welcoming ambiance to the workplace we suggested having some plants around the office.Plants improve indoor air quality and at the same time impact psychological health by reducing stress and boostingtask performance. The employees were also encouraged to bring in their favorite plant if they promised to take careof it. This provided each one with an additional positive task. A task that further engaged them in the workplace. Wesuggested posting a few slogans in strategic places. Slogans such as: Meeting our goal of 10% more sales and Wecan do it!To improve sales we introduced user-friendly quiz templates to improve product knowledge. Award points weregiven for correct answers. After only 4 months turnover became virtually non existent. Word also started gettingaround that the company was a great place to work for. Many of the ideas we presented cost little or nothing toimplement. Our goal was to aid this company to become a people place in addition to being just a workplace.Across the board, today’s market is highly competitive and challenging. Whatever your organization does, highlyskilled talented people are needed. You look to recruit people who can add value, explore newer markets, innovatenew technologies and support your business operations with enriched contributions. Next you require an effective,engagement environment that retains them. No one needs to tell you that your organization demands you to be thebest and be the champions of best HR policies.As an HR professional you are called upon to be more part of business decisions. Your role now is partnering withother departments and providing input. Because of this, more and more ,HR managers are seen as good candidatesfor CEO.Success and failure of your business depends to a great extent on the functions of you and your department.Share This