Business Heads versus Team HR
Are your Functional Heads playing their role in the organizational learning & development initiatives? Are the HR initiatives in line with the business strategy? As a CEO of the organisation, if your answer is no, then you must know that you are wasting a lot of money as salaries to the HR team.
Ideally in this situation all you need is an HR clerk to print appointment letters and experience letters. Of course, you can't manage your business without your Function Heads, but you should know that you are investing too much on them as well.
Yes. You are right. This is a rebellious thought. That apart, don't have an HR team if you are not worried about people practices in your organisation. Don't buy your leadership talent at a premium price if you don't expect them to play a role in the organizational learning & development.
"Churn rate of our frontline employees is high. Why should we spend money on their development?"
That is a common thought amongst aggressive sales driven organisations. On the face of it, it's a logical question. Why should the organisation spend time, effort and money on resources that are not going to stick with the organisation?
If you step back, take a deep breath, shed your (prejudiced) glasses (provided you're aware of wearing them) and take a broad look at any business; you will realize that these frontline resources are the face of the business. If these resources are ill-equipped, no matter how big the brand is, you will not be able to avoid negative perceptions being built, about your organisation.
If you pay peanuts you will only get monkeys
Does that statement make you cringe? It makes us cringe too. If you are an HR team member and you hear your leaders making this statement, don't give in to this negotiation technique. Employees don't join organisations for the money alone. The organisation's culture is driven by its leaders.
On one hand, you may have huge retail outlets that can make you feel totally unwelcomed. On the other hand, a staff member of a small sweet stall will manage to sell stuff to your entire family, when all that you wanted to buy was a sandwich to satiate your growling stomach.
If managers are not made accountable for recruiting their team members, you will continue to hear this peanut & monkey story, no matter how much salary you pay.
I don't see myself growing here
Your high performing employee may be giving this as a reason to quit your organisation. You would have given her promotions in grades and added new responsibilities to her role. You might have even tried giving exactly what she asked for. The reality is that your hipot is not happy with whatever she has got. Is it because
- Their requirements were not understood?
- They were not kept engaged?
- They were not given enough?
All the above thoughts may hardly help you to scratch the surface of the issue. But the root runs much deeper than what meets the eye. What if you haven't
- Understood what their real needs are?
- Checked if they are capable of what they are asking for?
- Checked their suitability and willingness to adapt to the demands of the new role?
Attracting & retaining talent
Attracting and retaining high potentials is one thing all organizations aspire to do. These are highly capable, intelligent, and quick learning resources that we are talking about. Would a hike in salary package, grade or designation keep them motivated for long?
Imagine a goldfish in a tank full of fighter fish. A formula1 car on a heavy traffic road. Shoe polish adjacent to fruit racks in a retail outlet. How repulsive are these images? This is exactly how hipots may feel if they have to work in an environment that doesn't suit their culture, aspirations and capabilities. They are going to feel suffocated and consequently the hipot will go in search of fresh air.
Getting people out of functional silos
The market situation today is such that your USP doesn't remain that way for a long duration. Doing things at the right time could mean fortunes to your organisation. Your sales & distribution team may want to roll-out a new initiative within the next 10 days. They present their proposal to the compliance team for clearance.
As per the compliance team's processes they can take 20 days to revert to the new proposal. If this situation exists in your organisation, be aware that the competition may respond to the market's needs before you get your compliance clearance.
With the introduction of ISO 9000 series of standards, the focus is on how an organisation ensures quality in the products or services offered to the customer. To achieve this, organisations attempt to define the key processes. The objective is to ensure the process is repeatable, measurable and improvable. However in reality, the process flow charts and quality manuals do not serve the purpose as there is seldom a shared understanding between various functions of what the organisation does and how it is done. Employees miss out the big picture, thus functioning in silos.
Let's do some outbound activity for team building
If your consultant is recommending this, hold on to your purse tightly. You just can't build a team through outbound activities alone. The outbound activities can be part of a bigger plan but can't be a standalone solution.
There are numerous dynamics that go in to building a team. You first need to put together the right set of people. 'Right set of people' does not necessarily mean all high performers. It means the right mix of people – those who have complementing behavioral profiles, experience and learning pace. Over and above that, the right environment, comprising a capable manager, is essential to nurture and build a team.
Why should I learn direct selling?
If your channel sales managers are asking this question, it may be an indicator that your sales team can't harness the potential of your channel partners. If your sales team's vision is tunneled to focus on only numbers, the channel partners, by now, are already frustrated with your brand.
Channel sales = relationship selling – this equation doesn't work. Channel sales managers have to be mentors and coach to the employees of your channel partners. They should be able to show them how your product/service can be sold. They should act like consultants to the partners. Your channel partners should derive value from meeting your sales managers.