Oh, it breaks my heart when this happens: A good team member…leaves. A client of mine called and told me that one of his key team members resigned. Let’s call the employee Dan. (Know that that’s not his real name, and this story is a mashup.) Dan is a great guy and had been with the company a long time. He had gotten frustrated that the growth opportunities were not developing fast enough. So, he left to go to work for the competition. Ouch.
What to do next? My client is a great guy, too. He responded by taking responsibility for the situation. He acknowledge that their growth plan had gone off the rails, and he vowed to energize it. He updated his Business Plan and his Goals, and Budget. He moved “Update and Improve Recruiting Procedures” to the Top Five Projects list.
He fell on his sword with the rest of this team. He shared that, sometimes we lose steam. Goals stagnate. Projects slow down. My renewed commitment is to reach our Sales and Production Goals. He reviewed the Goals with the team.
And he and the team kicked it in on the Project. They refined all aspects of Recruiting, Hiring and Training. He delegated big chunks of the Project so team members could play and help implement the new procedures. By getting their participation, he increased buy-in. And when you trust your team to do important work, it builds loyalty and job satisfaction. People stay when they have a compelling game to play.
I asked my client for an update, and he responded, “Here’s what we now know. We can help someone with no experience become successful. We search for willing and basically capable people. Then, we energize them. The Project pieces are on the calendar. There are weekly and daily activities to make sure we are recruiting, hiring, bringing people on board, and training them so that they can get good. We are in the best position we have ever been in as far as team building goes. I am so proud of our team.”
Awesome. So, I asked, “How much time does it take?”
He said, “Two or more hours every day! We are committed to whatever it takes to expand our team and grow opportunities for every employee.”
WOW! Two hours a day. If that’s what it takes, is that what you will do? Note how important it is to delegate if you want to grow your company. There just isn’t enough time if you don’t. Here are some of the things my client did to create a Rocking Recruiting Engine…
- Operate with an Organizational Chart. Don’t make up positions on the fly. You’ll be tempted to create a position based on someone’s unique skill set, but if you do, you’ll be stuck when they leave.
- Share the Business Plan. Share your Mission, Goals, Values, Financial Plan and Marketing Plan. Work with your team to create Top Projects that will help you make the dream a reality.
- Create Procedures. Document what needs to be done at every phase of the process and in every appropriate position.
- Recruiting, Hiring, Inspiring, Training….all lead to Retention, IF you let your team in on the game AND…if you..
- Grow. If you don’t grow, there’s no where to GO.
- Help ’em get good.
- Love, don’t hate, ’em. Easy for existing team members to say, “UGH!!!” And the new guy may be an UGH. The procedures will wash people out.
- First 30-60 days (or less) are the “Dating Days,” before you commit to the relationship. This is the chance for new hires to demonstrate that they can show up clean, sober, ontime, dressed right…and are willing to use a procedure.
NOTE! It doesn’t make someone worth any less just because they don’t work for you. It just means that the game at your shop wasn’t a good fit. And, who knows…you may work for him or her one day. I’ve been around long enough to know this for sure.
EPILOG! The fellow who left, called my client today. He may or may not come back. Should my client invite him back? Would you? What do you think? What do you think I think? Let’s chat…