Throughout the years I have worked with many businesses, and I always come to the same conclusion, while business structure is paramount, it is only the vehicle that drives performance through a team of motivated individuals. When you don’t have that motivation, it doesn’t matter how strong your structure is.
Your employees are the biggest asset you have. Their performance and attitude can result in the success or failure of your business. The most difficult part of any manager’s job is people management. He or she is required to lead, motivate, train, inspire, and encourage. On the other hand, he or she is also responsible for hiring, firing, disciplining, training and evaluating. These functions seem to be at odds, but a successful manager can integrate both the positive and negative aspects of these tasks to create a positive, productive work force.
So why in so many companies is this left to chance and why do we have businesses full of managers that manage?
So many businesses think their roles is just to develop a service, package it and sell it on, and that’s it. However do you not want to develop the Best Service, packaged in the Best way and delivered to your Customer through the Best and most effective Channel so you can offer them the Best Return for their investment you Can? Can you achieve this through treating people like robots on an assembly line?
People management, also known as human resource management (HRM), encompasses the tasks of recruitment, management, and providing ongoing support and direction for the employees of an organisation. These tasks can include the following: compensation, hiring, performance management, organisation development, safety, wellness, benefits, employee motivation, communication, administration, and training.
These are not terms however I like to use. When you break it down, isn’t the role of everyone in your business, including yourself, to perform at their best? Where in the Title Human Resources or People Management does it suggest that? And not just leaving it at that, typical functional managements e.g Sales Management. The title suggests one thing and one thing only, that is manage the status quo. Is it not the goal of a Sales Manager to continually improve the Sales Performance? Is it not the goal of a Human Resource Manager to improve the performance of their team through continuous development of each and every individual?
So why can’t titles reflect that?
This is always one of the first areas I challenge within a business. And that is first, setting the stage and ensuring the Structure reflects what you ACTUALLY want to achieve in your business.
So for example, if the role of the Sales Function is to continually improve Business Sales, should the Title of the person leading the Sales Team be something like ‘Sales Improvement Leader’ or ‘Sales Performance Leader’. Straight away it sets the tone and remit for the Sales Function and thus, the Sales Leader knows exactly what their remit is.
When leading the people within an organisation, a leader must focus on both hiring the right people and then getting the most out of these people. New personnel must provide the organisation with the best talent available that meets the needs of the business. The organisation must look ahead to how a new employee can be used to their fullest and that is using them to their strengths!. Getting the most out of an employee means a business has consistent policies and practices in place that puts people in rolls that play to their strengths and to provide its people with appropriate training and development to continually improve on them.
Employees are your internal Business Partners.
Probably the most important task a leader will face when dealing with the people under his direction is that of bringing out the best in them. Unlocking people potential the key to any business success. When an employee’s talents are not channelled correctly, their behaviour can seriously compromise the success of an organisation. Some of the roles that an employee who is not being used to his potential can take on are as follows: procrastinator, martyr, gossip, manipulator, backstabber, narcissist, a deer in the headlights, black hole, stonewalled, curmudgeon, bully, and predator.
So what drives performance within Individuals?
In any relationship, isn’t there a balance that is needed, that is both Give & Take? It’s the same in business, however most companies see Give & Take as in, The Business gives them money, they do work! Simple exchange.
However, things are never that simple. Everyone has wants and needs, and so does every employee in your business. And if you are serious about Success and Performance in your Business, you should truly care to find out what Success looks like for each and every individual in your business or team. This is not a one size fits all approach and as the saying goes, one person’s nightmare is another person’s dream, so take time to care about what are each and everyone’s nightmare and each and everyone’s dream. And I wouldn’t stop there, and again if you truly care about your Business and Team performance, you should very much care about your Team’s development and get everyone aligned and working at the APEX of their capability.
So going back to functional titles, what about titles of each and everyone of your team? Building a team of performers, and possibly future leaders, should absolutely be reflected in their title.
And as an exercise I would challenge Leaders to think about how they can develop a business structure that compliments and reflects the requirements of a High Performing Team!
MOVE THE MANAGEMENT AND LEARN TO LEAD!
Dan Pink gives an excellent talk on what truly motivates people and if you care about your team performance, please watch!