Archive for the ‘retention’ Category

Why Doctors and Companies Get Sued

September 3, 2009 Leave a comment

From our very own, Mr. Anderson: Why Doctors and Companies Get Sued

Excerpt: “For many of us, our workplace responsibilities have increased because of layoffs and re-orgs.  Those who are left behind have become the working wounded.  How do we help the wounded heal?  As a leader in the company you can make a huge difference by also practicing being a human being.”


Thanks for catching that error, Joe! We couldn’t do this without you!

Acknowledgement_of_AwesomenessWondering how you can motivate and engage your team, despite a lack of time and a dwindling budget? Showing appreciation is the #1 way to improve morale and drive results — and it doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg.

In the United States, The Gallup Organization has found disengaged employees cost the economy $300 billion a year whereas companies with higher employee engagement yield higher sales, higher productivity and higher retention than companies with low employee engagement (Baudville Day-to-Day Recognition White Paper).High Employee Engagement

Work days now are more jam-packed and go by faster than ever before; employees have more work, more pressure and less time.  So unfortunately, recognition often falls by the wayside.  Infrequent recognition won’t reinforce the behaviors you see occurring on a daily basis, and it’s hard to maintain momentum when your boss hasn’t told you that you’re on the right track, doing a great job, or provided you a needed boost.

Day-to-day recognition is defined as the genuine everyday expressions of appreciation given to reinforce and reward positive behaviors.


Today, recognition is more than just a pat on the back. It’s a means of giving feedback to employees about the job they’re doing.   In a recent Watson Wyatt survey, 66% of respondents said appreciation was a “very significant” motivator in the workplace.  All it takes is a small hand written note or a token of appreciation.


Here’s some “on the cheap” ways to tell your employees you’ve noticed how awesome they are:

  • A hand-written note of “thanks”
  • Post that thank you note on the employee’s door
  • Create a Hall of Fame wall with photos of all your employees
  • Make a photo collage about a successful project that shows the people that worked on it, its stage of development and its completion and presentation
  • Plan a surprise picnic
  • Sponsor a “Super Hero” party (everyone wears a superhero costume) at the end of an assignment, for a job well done
  • Answer your assistant’s telephone for a day
  • Hold informal retreats to foster communication and set goals
  • Encourage and recognize staff who pursue continuing education
  • Swap a task with an employee for a day – his/her choice
  • Establish a “Behind the Scenes” award specifically for those whose actions are not usually in the limelight
  • Design a “Stress Support Kit” that included aspirin, a comedy cassette, wind up toys and a stress ball – or design your own
  • Present “State of the Department” reports periodically to your employees acknowledging the work and contributions of individuals and teams
  • If your team is under pressure, bring a bag of marbles to work and take a break to have a contest – a sure stress reliever
  • Serve ice cream sundaes to all of your employees at the end of a project
  • Have staff vote for top manager, supervisor, employee and rookie of the year
  • Give a shiny new penny for every helpful thought that is shared with the team
  • Send a letter to all team members at the conclusion of a project, thanking them for their participation
  • Give employees tokens of thanks from various recognition vendors, such as Baudville, Gifts for Professionals, Motivators, and Despair, Inc.

And many, many more!!  Give me a buzz if you want help creating a recognition program for your team, or if you just need some good ideas for getting your folks re-energized!



How To: Be the Manager Who Knows How to Develop and Engage Your Team

Employee Engagement Requires More than Just Throwing Around a Buzz Term

During tough economic times, you’ll hear rumblings about “employee engagement” from various levels of an organization. Employee engagement is the hot buzz word that just won’t go away, primarily because it does have an impact on how well (or poor) a company comes out of a downturn.

However, while everyone is buzzin’ about employee engagement, how many of you actually know what drives, creates, and sustains it?? If you can name at least 3 *without peeking*, you get an A for the day.

Get a little deeper on what drives employee engagement:

  • Trust and integrity – how well managers communicate and ‘walk the talk’.

  • Nature of the job –Is it mentally stimulating day-to-day?

  • Strategic Direction between employee performance and company performance – Does the employee understand how their work contributes to the company’s performance?

  • Growth opportunities –Are there future opportunities for growth?

  • Pride about the company – How much self-esteem does the employee feel by being associated with their company?

  • Coworkers/team members – significantly influence one’s level of engagement

  • Employee development opportunities – Is the company making an effort to develop the employee’s skills?

  • Relationship with one’s manager – Does the employee value his or her relationship with his or her manager?

Something to Chew On

Lesson: Make sure to look down for trap doors when running.
Photo Credit: Stock.Xchang Photos

In a “do more with less” environment, it’s easy to overlook “less important” details and race forward to get tasks checked off your list. Sometimes those “less important” things we tend to overlook are… our people.

Rather than a machine, we’ve got real people working hard to get our tasks accomplished and one of the most powerful mindsets a manager can have is that we work for the employees. A manager’s role is to break down barriers and creatively provide resources the employees need in order to truly “do more with less”.

Managers that forget this part of their role wonder why their employees aren’t excited about the latest project, aren’t producing as efficiently, and why they’re beginning to disengage from the company.

Don’t fall into the trap of “doing more with less” and forget that your real responsibility is making it possible for your folks to actually do more with less, and still feel pride in the work they’re accomplishing.

To-Learn Lists

October 14, 2008 1 comment

Do you have a “To Learn” list? I do. Every day there are things that catch my attention and I want to learn more about. It’s a wide variety of topics and interests. My list isn’t formal, written down, or even checked-off as I learn new things. It’s basically just a collage of things I want to know more about.

Some people have a “skills-I-need-to-get” list. You may be more focused on a career shift, or just keeping up with the changes in your field. It’s important to have such lists.

Jim Collins, in an essay in Learning Journeys, wrote, “A true learning person also has a “to-learn” list, and the items on that list carry at least as much weight in how one organizes his or her time as the to-do list.”

“To Learn Lists” themselves can take the form of:

  • Outlines
  • Mind Maps
  • Concept Maps
  • Documents (HTML, Word, text, .ppt, .xsl, MS OneNote etc.)
  • Web 2.0 (Blog notes, wiki posts, etc)

The reason I’m talking about “To Learn” lists is because we should be looking at how we manage “Informal Learning” and how we reconcile that with our daily tasks. Here’s something that would be cool for all of us looking for new learning opportunities that allow us to grow within our current organization:

Look for opportunities to traverse the opportunities in the company, and compare the skill set needed for that position to your current skill set. This becomes your “To Learn” list. Then you make an action plan, at work, to advance your career and fill needs in the company. Then, people wouldn’t feel like they need to leave the company to advance, and the company wouldn’t lose their investment in each employee. Everyone is happy, we all grow together.

Thoughts? Do you have a “To Learn” list? Tell me about it using the Comments function.

Categories: learning, retention

Keeping Your Best Employees

September 3, 2008 Leave a comment

This short video goes along with the research we posted last week about retention, and gives you some good advice for keeping your top performers around.

Categories: retention