A recent study (“Are Low-Performers Destroying Your Culture and Driving Away Your Best Employees?”) of more than 1,700 employees working in the most different industry sectors, has found that organisations dealing with low-performance is weakening its culture and demotivates high-performers. In his article presenting this study, Stephen Miller (Miller, S., 2016) is highlighting the following consequences of such a culture:
• Morale damage: “Low-performers hurt morale in the workplace and increase the workload for others. When asked to pick the greatest problems created by low-performers, the top concern was that they reduce overall workplace morale (cited by 68 percent of respondents). Forty-four percent said that low-performers increase the work burden on high-performers.” (Miller, S., 2016)
• Mediocrity ultimately breeds failure: “Low-performers stifle innovation and contribute to a standard of mediocrity. Some 54 percent said that low-performers contribute to a lack of initiative and motivation, resulting in a work culture where mediocrity is accepted.”

It seams that many managers fail in dealing with poor performers, partly because they don’t want to ‘rock the boat’, or because they prefer spending years of coaching before taking action and terminating those employment. In order to overcome these situations, Miller (Miller, S., 2016) offers a few recommendation on how to dealing with poor performance at at work place:

1. Identify the high-performers of the organisation (by setting principles of retaining them, surveying, finding keys for motivating them, asking for feedback);
2. Identify the rules of how someone gets into this category of “high performers”: find out the best indicators that really matters in the organisation;
3. Competency-based Approach: hire and manage employees based on clear and transparent competency system; critical becomes also the professional background and therefore managers must determine every employee’s educational history too;
4. Newcomers survey: “Companies may send automated ‘quality of hire’ surveys after three, six, nine and/or 12 months. Based on the data results, companies may need to adjust their hiring processes accordingly.”

Read the whole article on: http://www.shrm.org, “Study: Beware ‘Toxic’ Influence of Low-Performers”, By Stephen Miller, 2/25/2016.

What CEOs expects from HR?

Trammell (Trammell, J., 2016) suggests in his new article on HR Leadership that there are 4 things that a company’s Board, and especially the CEO of a company, wants from a strategic HR:

1. To link talented people to the organisational strategy: “CEOs want an HR executive who understands where the company wants to go and what talent resources are required to get there quickly.”
2. To find “the best and brightest” people for every open position in the company: Hiring the right employee for a critical position is one of the most important and difficult in the same time tasks.
3. To owning the onboarding process: “Quality onboarding includes making the new hire aware of company history and general industry knowledge and having him or her attend meetings with key executives, in addition to the obvious job-specific training.”
4. To find the best strategies for engaging employees: “Most companies don’t measure employee engagement, much less manage it. This is yet another area where the HR executive can and should take the lead.” The author explains that the most functional methods for doing so would be surveys on engagement, dealing with immediate problems, supporting the management for finding the best ways to engaging people: “It’s especially critical for HR to coach and give feedback to first-line managers, many of whom aren’t well trained and lack skills that are critical to keeping employees engaged and motivated.”

Read the whole article on: http://www.entrepreneur.com, “4 Things CEOs Want From HR Leadership”, Joel Trammell, JANUARY 19, 2016.

What to ask when you must ask?

Lauren Steed has recently comprised in an article (Steed, L., 2016), the most powerful interview questions, gathered from CEOs and strategic leaders working in various companies, and we believe these 10 questions present conclusive ideas for hiring the best people in any organisation:

1. What’s your favourite part of your current job? — Helps managers to see if the candidate will fit and/or align to the objectives that the organization sets.
2. What’s a problem you’ve encountered and then solved? — Here the most important are the details; if the candidate really solved that particular problem he/she presents, then surely will be able to present the most basic details.
3. What is your preferred work style? — Help managers to learn about the interviewee’s preferences and “how his or her behaviour will lend itself to a team”. (Steed, L., 2016)
4. Tell me about a meaningful experience serving a cause — will give an idea on what the person’s feeling enthusiastic for and what he/she likes to do he most.
5. What’s the toughest feedback you’ve been given, and how did you learn from it? — “If a candidate answers this question by saying he or she can’t remember any important feedback they’ve received, that’s a big red flag. An answer like that tends to reveal a worker who is oblivious to their weaknesses or unwilling to accept any fault in their work. Both are difficult to work with.” (Steed, L., 2016)
6. Tell me about your friends. — It seams that people tend to surround themselves with people like them, so as many details the candidate gives, as more the interviewer can realise what kind of person he/she is; the manager can also find out what kind of socialiser the candidate is, or details about networking, about loyalty, about social atmosphere preferred, etc.
7. When have you been asked to do too much, and how did you respond? — “It’s useful to figure out if a candidate can admit to needing help. It also will reveal how much the person can handle before reaching out and using the resources available to him or her.” (Steed, L., 2016)
8. What are people likely to misunderstand about you? — “This question reveals how sharp a candidate’s social intelligence is. Can the candidate recognise what others perceive as a weakness in him or her — even if it’s not really a weakness?” (Steed, L., 2016)
9. What happened the last time you let someone down? — The interviewer will be able to see the depth of character that the interviewee has and whether or not he or she will even admit to letting someone down.
10. If you were hiring someone for this position, what would you be looking for? — “A bad candidate will just highlight stock qualities he or she thinks you want to hear, which is easy enough to see through.” (Steed, L., 2016)

Read the whole article on: http://www.hrmorning.com, “The 10 best interview questions you’ll see this year, Lauren Stead, February 26, 2016