(By Dan Simmons)
It doesn’t matter what line of work you’re in, it’s not getting any easier. Technology is making improvements daily (a positive in my opinion), but in doing so, it requires us to hire smarter, more experienced individuals and upgrade our machines to implement the new technology that’s now the standard.
If your competitors are going out of business, and it’s still difficult to get customers through the door, it’s time for a change. Since it’s not getting any easier, then it seems likely you need better people to help you accomplish the goals set before you.
This can come in two ways. First, training + an article from January (LINK TO ARTICLE) will help start your creative juices flowing. Second, upgrade your staff. We’ll cover this topic now.
Upgrading any team falls within three simple guidelines:
- Keep the top 1/3 very happy.
- Keep the middle 1/3 content.
- Have the bottom 1/3 replaced with people who are at least equal to your top half.
The implementation of the third guideline:
Step 1: Find the weakest link(s). (With numerous options for your reading pleasure on topgrading, I personally recommend Topgrading by Bradford Smart, Ph.D.)
- Create a rating system for your employees based on job performance, teamwork, alignment with the company’s vision, and accomplishments and negatives in their work history with you.
Step 2: Identify what you wish that person could accomplish during the next 12 months.
- This becomes a new job description. Get approval for it, based upon the reduced headcount.
Step 3: Start the recruitment process and the termination process.
Step 4: Say “farewell” to the bottom 1/3 and say “hello” to your new recruits.
Below is a simple way to look at the implementation process I described above.
Major League Baseball’s spring training season has begun. Last year, you had a baseball team with nine players. The best three players each hit at least 40 home runs, the next three players hit at least 25 home runs, and the bottom three players hit 10 home runs apiece. Assuming all else is equal, how many more games would you win if you upgraded the bottom 1/3 to those who hit at least 30 home runs each year? Sixty more home runs will win you a bunch of ballgames.
See you in the dugout, manager.