Tools: Print | Comment | Share

Stay informed by topic area

Eleven new RSS feeds featuring some of the most popular subject areas have just been created. Now you can keep track of new articles by subject by subscribing to any one of the feeds below:
New feeds:
Use the new feeds to keep track of the latest content in any given topic area listed above.

Labels: , , , , , , , , , ,

Permanent Link  |  View Comments
Tools: Print | Comment | Share

Hiring for experience or for attitude?

Phil Gerbyshak of the b5 Media Business Channel asks: would you rather hire an individual with a great attitude or one with great experience?

Visit the site to vote and to read my comment on this great question from the wonderful world of HR and hiring.

Labels: ,

Permanent Link  |  View Comments
Tools: Print | Comment | Share

How to motivate your employees

In order to motivate someone, you must have an understanding of the driving factors behind that person’s existing behaviour, and organizational systems in place which will foster employee motivation.

Maslow’s hierarchy of human needs states that human beings need to fulfill certain types of wants and desires in a specific order. From the more basic to the more complex levels, the human needs hierarchy according to Maslow consists of: 1) physiological needs; 2) safety/security needs; 3) love/friendship needs; 4) the need for self-esteem; and 5) the need for self-actualization.

What this means is that because people are at different “levels” within the hierarchy – e.g. some may be motivated by the need for long-term security (safety/security), whereas others may be motivated by the need to accomplish something big and meaningful (self-actualization), there will undoubtedly be different ways to motivate people.

In order to motivate someone, you must have an understanding of the driving factors behind the person’s existing behaviour as well as the proper organizational systems which will foster employee motivation.

What is required of these organizational systems is:

Regular communication with the employee
Having regular discussions with employees will help in assessing what it is that actually motivates them.

Whether the individual has a need to feel safe and secure that they’re doing relevant and purposeful work, or to feel self-actualized in that the work that they’re doing is beneficial and of high importance to the organization, it is important to communicate with the employee regularly, find out what their motivating factors are, and ensure that they are on the right course.

A direct link between the goals of the employee and those of the organization
Related to the previous concept is the alignment of the employee’s goals and objectives with those of the organization. When meeting with the employee to discuss his or her goals and objectives, it is helpful to share with them the importance of their contribution to the organization, and to guide them to choose goals that align nicely with those of the company. This need not be a one-way street however. If the employee’s goals are not immediately linkable to those of the organization, look for ways in which the person’s job activities can be enlarged or enriched.

By supporting the individual in their expanded or enriched role, the employee will be more fulfilled, and the organization will benefit by having a more motivated, high-potential individual within their ranks.

Linking compensation and rewards to the achievement and realization of goals
Compensation and employee reward systems are an important part of the overall motivational systems within an organization. When an employee does an outstanding job, don’t be afraid to reward them for their efforts.

By regularly meeting with employees to assess their individual motivating factors and putting other organizational processes in place, you stand a far greater chance of motivating your people to accomplish goals that are purposeful and relevant to your organization.

It is clear to see then, that there isn’t a one-size-fits-all way to encourage and motivate people but rather a multitude of ways, depending on what the individual needs from the organization.

Labels: , , , , , ,

Permanent Link  |  View Comments
Tools: Print | Comment | Share

Hiring for Executive Intelligence

The Working Knowledge newsletter, published by Harvard Business School, has an interesting article on hiring individuals based on what is known as 'executive intelligence.'

The article states that traditional testing methods, such as IQ testing, are limited in that the skills that these tests assess only represent a small portion of a individual's existing cognitive abilities. The skills that IQ tests generally measure - vocabulary, arithmetic, and spatial reasong - do not have much relevance to managerial work, according to the article. Furthermore, the format of these types of tests don't correlate very well with the real business world: "IQ tests don’t assess the practical, on-your-feet thinking skills needed in business, " states the author Justin Menkes.

However, despite these shortcomings, IQ tests are still a better predictor of managerial success than any other test or evaluation method currently in use. Even the highly popular past behavioural interview (PBI) technique misses out on determining whether a candidate holds tightly to deadines or resolves conflicts well. Behavioural interviews, according to Menkes, don't help the interviewer identify true star talent.

In order to hire employees on the basis of executive intelligence, Menkes suggests the following:
"The best way is to use questions that require candidates to demonstrate their skills in an interview format. For such a measure to assess intelligence, it must raise questions and situations that the candidate has never confronted. The more novel the situation, the less rote knowledge can be applied and the more cognitive ability is required to render an answer."
Read the complete article here.


Permanent Link  |  View Comments
Tools: Print | Comment | Share

The 12 steps to team building

Susan M. Heathfield has written an article over at called "How to make teams effective" in which she outlines the ways in which proper team-building can take place. From the article:
"In a team-oriented environment, you contribute to the overall success of the organization. You work with fellow members of the organization to produce these results. Even though you have a specific job function and you belong to a specific department, you are unified with other organization members to accomplish the overall objectives. The bigger picture drives your actions; your function exists to serve the bigger picture."
Heathfield states that the steps for true team-building can be broken down into twelve C's. Among them are:
  • (Setting) Clear Expectations
  • (Demonstrating) Context
  • (Demonstrating) Commitment
  • (Having) Competence
  • (Having a) Charter
  • (Exhibiting) Control
All in all, this is an interesting article on how to truly develop an effective team. Read the full article here.

Labels: , ,

Permanent Link  |  View Comments
Read more... »
Read more... »
Read more... »
Read more... »
Read more... »
Read more... »
Read more... »
Read more... »
Read more... »
Read more... »

Browse the archives via the tag cloud found above in the Leader's Toolbox below.

The Leader's Toolbox
books  business  communication  culture  decision making  emotional intelligence  ethics  finance  HR  management  marketing  meetings  motivation  negotiation  organization  performance  presentations  pricing  productivity  resistance to change  strategy  time-management