Maintaining Integrity during rapid growth

What is integrity? According to dictionary.com, integrity is “adherence to moral and ethical principles; soundness of moral character; honesty.” Why is it important in business? Integrity in business is important because it builds internal and external trust amongst all the people that have dealings with the company.

Effective leaders “walk the talk”; in other words they do what they say. It is imperative that during the early stages of a startup that codes of conduct be established that convey how business will be done and how employees, clients and suppliers will be treated. Companies that have great cultures are avid believers of collaboration. They encourage employees to share ideas and work together to solve problems.

“Two heads are better than one but 7 heads are even better”

When your company is impacted by rapid growth it is often found that you lose touch with your employees, reaching targets takes priority instead of optimizing client satisfaction, and company values may become diluted as employees may start to do anything necessary to keep their jobs. Effective leaders implement department headcount caps of 170 or less, discuss company values, mission and strategy daily, and have employee-centric cultures.

For example, an automotive air bag manufacturer, Takata, wanted to cut costs so they opted for a cheaper material which resulted in a mass recall. Evidently, they increased their losses by not maintaining integrity in their product. There are many other ways to cut cost but keep quality and this showed their lack of consideration for their customers. They were more concerned about their bottom line. It is going to take a long time for them to build trust with those customers that they lost because of their poor judgment and poor ethics.

Nevertheless, it is important that leaders ensure that their employees understand and never stray from the company’s core values by discussing this matter daily. Customer satisfaction, internal and external respect amongst employees, clients and suppliers, and collaboration are the key factors that make for an enduring company. When employees trust their coworkers and leaders they work together as a team and protect the company from harm.

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E.O.W(End of the Week) Notable Tip: Emphasize Intrinsic Rewards

Happy Friday!

I hope you’ve had a great week.

Today I want to leave you with a short tip about enriching the jobs of your employees. What do employees want? You find the answer to this question by asking them! However, most employees seek intrinsic rewards.

“Employees want interesting, challenging work,  and the opportunity to achieve and grow into greater responsibility.”

 

Until next time, remember, “Success is continuous improvement.”

 

 

E.O.W. (End of the Week) Notable Tip: You can say “NO” to a Client

Happy Friday!

I hope you’ve had a great week. Today, I want to discuss client relationships. Ever been ganged up on by frustrated employees who felt betrayed by a manager that could not say no to a client’s unfair demands or bad treatment? If not, then lucky you!

“Effective leaders know when to say no to a client that makes unfair demands and encourage their employees to speak up if a client is treating them badly. However, they make it clear that bad-mouthing a client is never acceptable.”

 

Have a great weekend! As always remember, “Success is continuous improvement.”

E.O.W (End of the Week) Notable Tip: The 4 Struggles of an inexperienced Manager

Happy Friday!

I hope you had a great week. This week I’ve been discussing employee to manager transitions with clients and the problems they have encountered with the newly appointed yet inexperienced manager. You may have witnessed an employee that has been promoted to a managerial position lose their shine as they demonstrate that they don’t actually comprehend the position. Before they were task driven and now they have to think and act strategically. Below I have noted the top 4 struggles that inexperienced managers face:

  • Inability to empower others
  • Poor delegating: Lack of trust of staff to complete tasks
  • Little or no constructive feedback given to staff
  • Lack of focus and/or skills in strategic thinking

Early manager to employee support and coaching in the inexperienced manager’s early years in the company is the best course of action in molding effective managers. Employees do what they see their managers do so make sure you walk the talk!

 

 

E.O.W (End of the Week) Notable Tip: Managing Employees when mistakes are made

Happy Friday! I hope you’ve had a great week. Today, I want to end this week with the topic of employee management specifically when they make mistakes. In my career, I have seen “Screaming Managers”, those that yell like banshees at their employees when something goes wrong or a mistake is made. Its worse when this is done in front of everyone as the employee’s confidence is being eaten alive coupled with the horrific embarrassment.

Then we have the passive aggressive managers, who say everything is okay but have plans to kick you out the door even if this is your first mistake. An effective and strong manager does not scream nor is passive aggressive. So, “What is the best way to manage an employee when they make a mistake?”

“Effective leaders quickly respond to an employee that has made a mistake. They use firm yet positive language to express how the mistake makes them feel and how it affects the company. They make sure the employee understands what they did wrong and give them a brief moment to digest it. Most importantly, they make it clear to the employee that confidence has not been lost and they are certain the employee will be able to not only correct it but also ensure that it is not repeated. In short, effective leaders don’t erode employee confidence they mold them to be champions.”

4 Step Process for Motivating Employees

Motivating employees effectively takes thorough understanding of what truly motivates them and yourself as the leader of the company. Effective leaders communicate performance expectations and goals clearly. It is more than just a reward for getting a big client or exceeding/meeting a goal. It is about clear expectations, communication, regular feedback and performance measures.

The First step in your employee motivation process journey should be to set realistic goals and standards, develop checkpoints to measure progress, create measures of performance to measure progress and encourage innovation.

The Second step, emphasizes the importance of communicating effectively by imploring that goals and objectives are communicated clearly, resistance to change is handled diplomatically, employee concerns are heard and solutions are developed quickly, you as a leader inspire cooperation and commitment, and the brainstorming of new ideas is encouraged.

The Third step, delves into the regularity of employee feedback. It is critical that a feedback system is established along with timely feedback, constructive criticism and the proper managing of conflict.

The Fourth and last step is about the development and reporting of performance metrics. This involves setting priorities, approving solutions, encouraging continuous improvement by providing educational and training opportunities, managing differences, and providing timely recognition and rewards.

In short, stay abreast of the needs, concerns, and accomplishments of your employees on a daily basis. Your employees are not just seat fillers nor numbers; make an effort to get to know them on a personal level. Take the time to verbally appreciate them everyday and showcase your own motivation.

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