How to Attract and Retain the Right People
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If you’re one of the many executives struggling with finding and keeping the
right people to propel your business forward, you’ll find these insights
If you’re frustrated by trying to motivate people, work instead to develop a
company where people are self-motivated – where they do things because they want
to. When we’re inspired, we enjoy our work, we’re productive, and we’re proud of
our efforts. We remain focused and committed to the task at hand. In short, we
put forth out best effort.
An organization will attract and retain a team of people dedicated to the
success of the organization and its goals when it has a Purpose, a Mission, and
a set of Values that it lives by, effectively communicates them throughout the
organization, and measures its actions and decisions against them. Let’s define
what Purpose, Mission and Values are and talk about the implications of having
them clearly defined and embodied in the organization.
Purpose is the "WHY" of the equation. Purpose defines why we do
what we do. It defines why we go to work each day. Without purpose, people just
go through the motions and as most of us know, there’s a great difference
between activity and achievement. Having a purpose creates a yardstick, so to
speak, to measure our decisions against. It helps us become passionate, helps us
to select among the many options presented to us, helps us make better hiring
decisions, and keeps us on track. It’s possible to succeed without a clear
purpose, but having one speeds and magnifies the results.
When a company has a clearly defined purpose it begins to act as a magnet,
attracting the kind of people who will further the purpose; people who are
like-minded. Not only will having a purpose retain the right people, but it will
also act to attract them. This is the power behind the success of many
not-for-profit organizations. Although they often are unable to pay their staff
great sums of money, they continue to attract and retain people who are
dedicated and who work hard to achieve the purpose of the organization. While
your organization’s purpose may not be as altruistic as a not-for-profit’s
purpose, it definitely plays an important, almost critical, role.
How you develop a meaningful purpose? Involve people throughout the
organization in order to develop and distill the essence of why your
organization exists. Don’t simply rely on the executive team to develop and then
dictate the purpose to the group. And certainly don’t rely on an outside company
to create your purpose for you! It has been my experience that a welldefined
statement of purpose is a single sentence, crafted to capture the essence of
“why” the organization exists using as few words as possible and resonating when
read or spoken. This brings clarity and energy to it, and makes it much easier
to keep in mind when making decisions and policies.
Mission is the "WHAT" of the equation. Mission defines
what the company does to achieve its Purpose. The better defined a company’s
mission is, the easier it is to choose among the many opportunities that will
present themselves. A mission – the means to achieve the Purpose - can be fairly
narrow or be somewhat broad. However, one that is too narrow can unduly restrict
an organization from considering opportunities that would otherwise be an
excellent fit, and one that is too broad offers no guidance at all and may cause
an organization to spread itself too thin, do a poor job at everything, and
essentially dilute its effectiveness.
How do you determine an appropriate mission? Again, remember to involve
people throughout the organization to develop and distill the essence of what
your organization is about. Don’t simply rely on the executive level to develop
and then dictate the mission to the group. Work to strike that balance between
clarity and confinement – not too broad, yet not overly restrictive.
Values are the "HOW" of the equation. Values define how
the Mission will be carried out in an effort to achieve the Purpose. They define
the “rules of the game”. Some of these values will come to mind quite easily,
things like honesty, courtesy, kindness, and ethics. But some other important
values will only surface when brainstorming takes place - when different
perspectives and voices are heard. Values like authenticity and vulnerability
may be placed on the table for consideration. (Which, by the way, are two
essential qualities of an exceptional leader.) It doesn’t matter which values
are decided upon as being important to the company. What is important however,
is that whatever they are, everyone in the company lives by and supports them.
It’s important that the policies and decisions of the company are in alignment
with them. If the company has an acknowledged list of values it purports to live
by and then chooses to ignore them, the list becomes a sore point and acts as a
negative reflection of what kind of organization you really lead.
When a company has clearly defined its Purpose, Mission, and Values, then all
decisions, policies, and actions will have a measuring stick to keep them on
course and you will have an organization which attracts and keeps the best!
You’ll create an organizational culture which naturally acts as a magnet to
attract and retain like-minded people. And you’ll also have the framework to
interview about the things that matter most to you and your organization. No
longer will people be hired based solely on technical abilities or simply to
fill seats. Exceptional leadership inspires the best effort in others!
About the Author
by Michael Beck, an Executive Coach and Strategist specializing in
employee engagement, executive development, and leadership
effectiveness. Connect on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/mjbeck
and visit www.michaeljbeck.com
to learn more.
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Article Published/Sorted/Amended on Scopulus 2008-11-24 12:46:36 in Employee Articles