gia vang hom nay , seo uy tin , bao ve viet nam , cong ty bao ve viet nam , dich vu bao ve viet nam , thoi trang viet nam , thoi trang viet nam , tin tuc moi viet nam , tin moi viet nam , chia se mon ngon , phim viet nam , ung dung game , tin giai tri , tin cong nghe , khach san da lat , anh showbiz , my pham trang da , bao da ipad , op lung iphone , bao ipad , tap chi sao , kem duong da , may tinh bang , samsung , dien thoai sky , iphone , smartphone gia re , phim club , bao cong nghe , ipad , iphone 5s , thoi trang , Game Mobile , game mobile , meo vat , me va be , OpenCart Themes , flash card

Contact us on: 011 609 1264

Subcribe to Newsletter

First Name (*)

Invalid Input
Surname (*)

Invalid Input
Email (*)

Invalid Input
Province (*)

Invalid Input

Invalid Input
The Noise, Oh The Noise

Part 2 of "The Angry Silence"

By Mark Deavall - March 2015

Gary ran his hands through his hair and looked at me with a look of absolute despair. “Is this what I signed up for? Is this what I went to university for, got a degree and a post graduate degree and then ALSO an MBA? Is this what I did all that studying and work for?”

I was sharing with Gary and his management team the results of the discussions that I had with some of their staff, and which I shared with you in my article “The Angry Silence”.

“All that I hear from the workforce is moan, moan, moan. The noise is deafening!” “Gary, forgive me for stating the obvious, but have you tried listening to them?” Slowly raising his head to look at me he quietly said, “Isn’t that why I have an HR department?” The rest of his management team all nodded their heads in agreement and looked to their boss for further direction.

Playing for time, I reached out for the jug of water on the table and filled my glass. I wasn’t going to say anything. The silence stretched between us until at last one of the management team, Chris, said “So what do we do? It’s obvious that we have a workforce that is unhappy with the way that we manage them. How do we fix that?” I looked around the table at the rest of the team and found that most of them were looking down at the table or doodling on their writing pads. “Do you guys agree with Chris?” I said. Warily they all looked to Gary for guidance. “Don’t look at Gary guys,” I said, “he doesn’t have the answers. I need your opinions and input”.

“I think that question can best be answered by Monica” said one of the team. Monica spoke up, “Why me Guy, I don’t manage the workforce?” So Guy is the one that broke ranks and was trying to pass the buck, and Monica is the HR manager. “Let’s not play the blame game folks.” said Gary. “Let’s try to get to the bottom of all these negative comments made about how we manage the people in this company”. Aaah! At last Gary was taking some decisive action in the right direction!

“Maybe Gary,” I said “it would be a good place to start if we made a list of the ongoing problems that we are experiencing with the workforce”. I got up and went to the whiteboard, holding the pen ready to start writing.

  1. “Absenteeism is out of control” said Guy
  2. “So is sick leave” said Monica
  3. “It worries me that our start time is 8 am and I see people walking in at 8 am. I wonder what time they actually start work?” said Gary
  4. “I wish that my staff would just take some responsibility!”
  5. “If only, for once in a while, they would think further than their noses”
  6. “I want my staff to take ownership of their job functions”
  7. “Deadlines! Meeting deadlines is a problem!” said Tony

After that the conversation just became a free for all, but Gary added some perspective when he said “It seems to me that our workforce wants to earn as much money as possible, and yet do as little work as possible!” At this there was a chorus of agreement from the rest of the management team.

“Ok Gary,” I said. ”I’ll take that, and you may be right. But let’s park it for a moment and talk about the KPI’s of the workforce. Are they right in their assertion that the KPI’s against which they are being appraised are very subjective and have little or no bearing on their actual job?” Everyone turned to look at Monica, the head of HR. Blushing she said “I have no idea guys. You gave me the jobs and told me to write the job descriptions. You signed them off as correct and from that we drew up the performance appraisals.”

Now we were getting somewhere. There was silence around the table. It seemed as if Monica had really “put the cat among the pigeons”. “OK management team, it seems as if you have run out of fixes and only have problems. So let’s see if we can come up with a few strategies that will start putting management and the work force on the same page. There were general nods of agreement so I went to the flipchart, and we started.

“Before addressing the list of gripes that you have given me, we need to address some fundamental people management principles that lead to high productivity. If these principles are not in place, you are trying to drive a vehicle that is clean, has leather seats and an air conditioner, it has an automatic gearbox and very nice wheels, but it doesn’t have an engine! You have a really nice building, nice offices, nice furniture and a nice canteen, but it seems to me as of the engine is missing. So let’s define the engine.”

  1. Recruit the right person, for the right job, for the right money, for the right reason and at the right time. Never let someone else do your recruiting. You have to manage that person therefore you do the recruiting!
  2. The Human Resources department is NOT responsible for writing Key Performance Indicators. You as management are! And those Key Performance Indicators have to be firstly, objective and secondly relate directly to the output of the individual.
  3. Relate the Key Performance Indicators back to the context of the Key Performance Area’s. Without the context of the responsibility for which the individual is being held accountable, there is no understanding and buy in.
  4. In conversations with your staff, always put the points that you raise in the context of the relevant Key Performance Area. If there is no Key Performance Area that covers that particular instance, write one! But consult with the person actually doing the job to make sure you cover all the bases.
  5. Review the applicability of the Key Performance Indicators and the Key Performance Areas all the time. If these are more than a year old they are out of date!
  6. Let each member of staff have a copy of their Key Performance Areas and to relate their daily activities against them (did this activity bring me closer to achieving the requirements of my KPA or not?). Encourage them to modify them if needed. Remember, they own their job description! You want them to take ownership? Well this is how it will happen!
  7. Set clear boundaries and then enforce them. Even if your people don’t like them, the boundaries are there to serve the interests of the company. If the individual does not stay within the boundaries there has to be a severe consequence.
  8. Treat each person as an individual and spend time listening to them. Yes I said LISTENING!!!!!! You’ll be amazed at how much you learn! (In general, managers talk far too much and listen far too little)
  9. Use the disciplinary process as an absolute last resort and only once you have decided that the person’s employment needs to be terminated. Very few, if any, letters of warning have ever brought about an improvement in performance. A letter of warning denotes the beginning of the dismissal process. Use it judiciously!
  10. Remember that just as there are no naughty children, just ineffective parents, there are no bad workers, just ineffective managers. If you have problem staff, look at yourself first.

There was silence at the end of this. Bev, the Financial Manager looked up and said, “But that’s a lot of work!” “Yes Bev it is” I said. “But, that is why you are employed – to get the productivity out of your team that this company requires, and you’re not going to do that by hiding behind a computer all day. When you became a manager, you made a career choice, and that choice was that from that day forward you were not a technical specialist any longer but rather a specialist in helping people to achieve the goals that their employer has set for them. That is what it means to be a manager! That’s what you get paid for!

“That seems very simplistic though Mark” said Gary. “I know it does, and you’re actually right, it is simplistic. But people are in effect quite simple to understand and have simple needs. It really does not take much to switch someone on to productivity”.

At that, we stopped the meeting, with the commitment from the management team to start implementing the points that we had together written down. I’ll go back in about three months and see how they are doing.

I trust that you have found benefit in this article. If you would like to contact me or have me talk to the people in your company, please call me on 27 82 465 5481, or  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

This article is protected by international copyright law. If you would like to copy this article for any reason, please be sure to copy the entire article including this paragraph.

Tel: 011 609 1264
Fax: 011 452 0138
Send us an e-mail
fb Copyright © Merit Business Institute 2009
All rights reserved.
Website Hosting by DiaMatrix
E-mail newsletter & SMS marketing by MyListManager