Margo Chevers
Northeast Leadership

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How to get UP On a down day

Stop The B.S.

What Do You Want To Be When You Grow Up?

The Chevers Report October 18 , 2006 

Volume # 1 Edition # 16

Some Outlandish Ideas

I’ve been thinking for the past few years that companies have been approaching some of their human resource issues all wrong.

The hiring process in many organizations is poor at best. I work with too many companies that have problem employees simply because they hired the wrong person for the job. Out of desperation, they hired someone who didn’t match perfectly, had some flaws, but the manager thought he could over look those things they were uncomfortable with in the individual. Of course, as time progressed, those very things they thought they could overlook are the very things that bother them the most.

I propose that anyone who applies for a job is not only interviewed, but must audition for the job. Think of the areas we ask people to prove themselves. Their resume, if they are to use a keyboard, then an accuracy and speed test is required, a portfolio of past work, a personality test, a drug test, a credit review are just some of the ways we ask people to prove themselves to us. But how about having them actually do the job they will required to do in order to evaluate for ourselves their competency?

I’m asked quite often to supply references, video demos and the ability to sit in my audience while I give a speech. I’ve been asked to come in to put on a small portion of a seminar to evaluate my style and content. In other words, to prove that what I say I can do, I can do. I am always happy to do this, because I know I can deliver what I tell them I can do.

I have been watching the new reality television show, The Apprentice. It is a show where there are eight, bright young people who are going through different business scenarios, to prove they are worthy of being hired by Donald Trump as the president of one of his companies. Not only are they auditioning, they are doing it on national television in front of millions of people

So the first radical change to human resource management is to hire the right people by having them prove they can do what they say they can.

The other area that is lacking in human resource management is the lack of productivity on the part of the employee. I hear complaints that today’s workforce doesn’t want to work any longer, that there’s a sense of entitlement among workers and they will only do the least expected amount of work in order to stay employed.

I don’t think these issues are the problem of workers, I think it is a product of management not being bold enough to change the system we currently use to hire and motivate employees.

The second outlandish idea is to pay everyone in the organization the same pay scale. That would be the minimum pay in that state. No one would receive more in their pay than the next person. However, that is for the minimum expectations. Then each employee would be compensated for actual productivity. What value does your work have and what is not only the volume, but the quality of your output.
This is done all the time with salespeople. They are paid a base salary plus commissions on the sales they make. Wait staff in restaurants are paid below minimum wage plus the tips they earn. Managers are sometimes compensated a percentage of profit. CEOs are given large bonuses based on the results of the corporation.

So this is not a totally new idea, it just takes it to its logical conclusion. If everyone is paid according to their contribution to the success of the organization, most employees would take advantage of the system by performing at higher levels than they currently do.

There are cases where companies are employee owned and the attitudes, productivity, team effort and morale are exceedingly better than their counterparts in similar companies that use a pay scale to compensate employees.

If we want to have profitable companies that treat employees fairly as well as the management of the organization, doesn’t it make sense to take a fresh look at some of the practices that currently aren’t working as well as possible and try something outlandish?


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© 2005 Margo Chevers


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