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Monday Morning Notes
December 12, 2011
from the desk of Chuck Violand... 


Good Monday morning, <<First Name>>—  

             Most entrepreneurs aren’t hard wired to be great teachers or mentors. Yet when they’re the CEO of their company that’s one of their major responsibilities, even if they don’t do the developing themselves.
             In today’s Note I discuss the impact both developing and not developing your people can have on your business. 

Enjoy!
Chuck

 




BELCHING AT THE TABLE, Part III
by Chuck Violand... 

            In Part I of this series I mentioned that most CEO’s don’t do well with subtleties. We’re also not good with innuendos, double entendres, or reading between the lines. As a result we don’t recognize suggestions about how to better do our jobs when they’re disguised as polite little burps discretely hidden in napkins. It usually takes a belch-the-entire-alphabet-in-one-breath recital to get our attention, but by then it’s often too late. By asking yourself the third of our four questions you can avoid a lot of unpleasantness.
            Are the people in your company growing?Are your people getting better at their jobs? Are they the kind of people you’d want to recruit away from another company? Are other companies trying to recruit your people away from you?
            One of a CEO’s main responsibilities is to grow his people. This doesn’t mean the CEO does all the training, but it’s their job to see that their people are developed. And not just front line employees, but everyone throughout the organization. As the company grows and the skill sets of those in supervisory and management positions become more sophisticated, this becomes more difficult. Often the technical skills required for positions like accounting, sales, administration, and HR are well beyond those of the CEO, so outside training resources are needed.
            Too many business owners overly concern themselves about investing in training their people, only to have them leave. But as my colleague, Bill Yeadon, likes to say “What if you don’t train them and they stay?”
            Can you imagine explaining that philosophy to your customer? “Mrs. Jones, you’ll be pleased to know that our employee retention program is based on investing absolutely nothing in employee training. This way they don’t know enough to leave us, and no other employer wants them”. Talk about instilling confidence in your customers!
            “A” employees want to work with other “A” employees and they challenge each other to be better at their jobs. When there are no other “A” employees in the company and they’re forced to work with “B” and “C” employees, they eventually leave.
            In contrast, “B” employees prefer working with “C” employees. This way the “B’s” don’t feel threatened by the “C’s”, but they’re also not challenged to get better at their jobs, which can lead to a downward spiral of employee competence. Then rather than the CEO being able to do what he should with his time, his time and energy are consumed trying to make sure his “B” and “C” employees are doing their jobs.
            Every company is only as good as the people who work for it. If you as the CEO are struggling with growing your company, it might be that you don’t have the right people on board to help or that you’re not developing the skills of those you do have.
            Taking this premise one step further reveals that the people in a company are a reflection of the CEO. So, if you’re not happy with the talent or performance of the people in your organization, then take a look at the person who’s ultimately responsible for filling the seats with the right people, the CEO.   

C.
 

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