Where to begin? Because there are so many valid points in this article, I will pick my favorite from each section to share my opinion about.
Reasons You May Need Completely Different Workers #3 New technology, products and processes may require agile employees: As an employee that works in the automotive parts industry, this is an extemely important concept for most auto parts companies to consider. Our industry, by nature, has always been a “good ol boys club” where a lot of employees were hired based on business partner or internal referrals. While hiring retired service advisors and wrench turners may have been a great idea in the past, these are not your tech-savvy employees of the future.
I have seen how difficult it can be to integrate these old school workers into a high-tech world. With sophisticated computer programs that process customer orders, monitor and manage inventory levels and provide customer satisfaction feedback, it is hard for many in the baby-boomer crowd to acclimate to new computer applications. And don’t even think about asking them on their ideas of how to integrate social media into our sales platforms… In this extremely competitive market, being “on point” actually puts you one step behind. There is no time for those that refuse to acclimate to innovation to remain on your teams. (Yes-this is a pretty cutthroat way of looking at things, but hey, this is an opinion piece.)
Reasons You May Need Completely Different Skill Sets, Attitudes, and Performance Levels #4 Employees may be unable to change their attitudes. I LOVED this point. I have talked to many self-motivated, high performing employees who say that one of the main reasons they have sought/are seeking new employment opportunities is because they work around fellow employees who have a major attitude problem. These employees come to their companies fresh faces, ready to work hard and achieve success-and then they are placed in a group of employees who have been with the company for a while and have crap attitudes. Over time, regardless of how upbeat, energetic and motivated that newer employee is, they find it hard to thrive in such a negative environment. Eventually that employee will do one of two things: jump ship and find employment with another employer, or join the “dark-siders” and start to mock the poor attitudes of their fellow co-workers. Either way, this is a lose-lose situation for the company, the poorly behaving employees and the fresh-faced new employee.
HR-related Reasons Why You May need to Reboot Your Workforce #5 Job security may be part of the problem: I AGREE HANDS DOWN! When I have worked in company where there was an intense reliance on high performance in regards to your ability to retain your position, I have never worked so hard or been so happy in my (work) life. The idea that my future was securely tied to my present work performance kept me on my toes, made me double and triple check all my work and kept me a smidgen paranoid that I would be fired for turning in moderate quality work. The outcome was that I enjoyed the success of a job well done a lot more, I was always in the top-performing group and I appreciate that slackers were not tolerated within the company.
Too often I talk with hiring managers and executive officers who are reluctant to fire people because they aren’t performing as well as they need to be. I’ve heard “John has been with the company for 8 years, we can’t let him go at this point” or “Dina does a pretty good job of staying on task, even though I will admit that she texts too often, is frequently on Facebook during the work day and has called in sick 5 times in the past month.” These kind of discussions with upper management not only make me sick, they light me up! What happened to the days when employees were held accountable for their actions, were expected to come in to work on time and ready to be on task and tenure with the company didn’t excuse bad behavior??? There are too many employees who get by with doing the bare minimum in order to retain their current jobs . Is it just me, or do these higher-ups need a refresher course in my performance and behavior management is important?
Maybe I’m just super hardcore when it comes to taking my job seriously. I have always been characterized as an over-achiever, but I really don’t see performing well, stay current with industry and/or company trends and being professional (read-having a positive attitude) as over-achieving. I see it simply as being a good employee.
What are your favorite thoughts regarding this article?