bobbie smith

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writer, editor, designer, communications expert

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Tell employees your value proposition.

An employee value proposition (EVP) is the employment deal or promise that you make to employees the moment they start to work for you. Every organization has one, whether they know it or not. Some EVPs are better than others.

By identifying what that promise is, and assuming that it’s good stuff, you can then begin to share it regularly to remind employees of the great things to promise to provide for them. 

For example, what are the benefits of working at your organization?  Maybe you’re a small organization and don’t have the revenue to provide big-corporate-style employee benefit programs, but you can offer flexibility in scheduling and recognition programs that provide dividends when you earn them or maybe you can allow employees to bring their dogs to work. 

Every part of the employment deal counts, but if they don’t know all about it, you’re missing a vital opportunity.

Explaining your EVP to your employees clarifies what you offer and what they can expect.

By promoting it at every opportunity, you not only remind employees of the benefits of working at your organization; you increase the likelihood that they’ll stay for the long run.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Actions speak louder than messages.

You tell employees that they are important to you, but:
You never ask them how their day is going; it’s because of your crazy schedule.

You walk by them all the time with your head down, thumbing your Blackberry.
You don’t have time to answer their questions or meet with them.

If this is the case, you can post messages on your Intranet site and send them all the memos in the world about how important they are to you but because of what you do, but they won’t believe you. 

If employees really are important to you, you need to show them, not tell them. 

Then, and only then, will they get the message.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Give employees a voice.

Giving employees a way to voice their thoughts, opinions and suggestions about the business has multiple impacts. Offering opportunities for employees to give feedback allow them to:
  • Become more engaged as they feel someone is listening.
  • Come up with creative solutions to operational problems.
  • Share intelligence to which leaders are not exposed.
  • Inform leaders of what employees are thinking and what their needs are.
Ignoring employee input makes as much sense as ignoring customer input. If you’ve ever watched the reality show UNDERCOVER BOSS, you’d know that until executives get their hands dirty, it’s difficult for them to run their business well. The show follows high-level corporate executives as they slip anonymously into the lowest level jobs within their companies to find out what their employees really think about the business and to discover/uncover ways to improve the business.

It’s tough for leaders to conduct an undercover boss operation in their own organizations. Wouldn’t it be easier to just ask employees what they think, what ideas they have and what problems they need solved? In fact, asking them is the easy part; following up with them year after year and taking visible action in the right direction is the hard part.