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Why Not Fire the Human Resource Manager and Leave the Staff

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Human resource manager

The recruiter of staff is surprisingly often immune to staff retributions such as demotion, dismissal and performance improvement programs. The practice is to see other staff, often those with measurable profit or sales targets and those in customer service units, lose their jobs or stay on one grade for too long a period.

Some argue that this is justifiable. Of course, no employer will continue to promote its workers on account of poor performance or misconducts. Unsatisfactory performance and misconducts are simply unacceptable, let alone deserving of any reward. What continues to surprise me is human resource personnel who take no responsibility at all for the poor performance of the same staff they recommend or approve for hiring. One of the basic, yet vital duties of the human resource department is to identify and recruit the best personnel for the business. Why are they insulated from the poor performance and misconducts of the same staff?

When football coaches are axed for poor performance of their teams, one of the reasons is their inability to identify and sign good players that will help them achieve the expected results. Another reason is their inability to properly train the players they have and use them in a manner (tactics & strategy) that will effectively and efficiently deliver results. Whether these coaches personally accept the responsibility for poor performance of their teams or not, they often take the fall for the poor performance of the teams they manage.

It is that responsibility that I find lacking in our corporate environments. Human resource personnel recommend the reshuffling, demotion, resignation and dismissal of the staff they assessed and recruited, and recommend a suitable role for based on their assessment of the individual’s strengths and weaknesses. Yet, they (the same HR personnel who recruited the staff) do not bear any responsibility when the staff does not perform satisfactorily in the roles assigned them. In fact, there are countless instances where a prospective staff asks to be placed in a particular role, but HR personnel, based on their experience and wisdom, recommends a different role for the prospect. In their haste and excitement to take a new job, they ‘make do’ with this role,……only to perform poorly in the months to come.

Human resource personnel, the very people directly involved in the recruitment and training of staff should also be bold enough and quick to share in the responsibility for poor staff performance and misconducts. Why should other members of staff face demotions and dismissals whilst HR personnel are not affected in any way?

The assessment of the HR staff should be linked in greater part to the overall performance of all staff. I know some businesses are organised in this manner, but that’s only few. Recruitment should be taken as a very serious part of the HR duties, not one that is viewed as “we can always sack and hire another”.

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HR

Experience is Overrated in the Corporate World

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experience overrated

At age 19, Lionel Messi had shown the world that it takes more than experience to be good at what we do. At 22 years, Messi won the Ballon d’Or and FIFA World Player of the Year award by record voting margins. Companies prefer to hire people who have once held a similar position to the one which they are hiring. This is true and important for many companies. Often, experience plays a big role in determining whether a job applicant is qualified or not.

If you consider what is meant by ‘experience’ in most cases, you realize it is heavily skewed towards one metric: the length of time spent doing a particular job. However, this experience in itself is a weak indicator of future success, experts say.

Experience May be Bad Experience

Having admitted that Hilary Clinton has more political experience than him, Donald Trump told Hilary during the campaigns leading to the 2016 American elections that what she has as a politician is bad experience. In the corporate world, people learn a lot of bad things over a long time whilst doing their jobs. Under pressure, many salespeople crack and cut corners in order to show decent figures at the end of the month. Such experiences are repeated until it becomes part of them; the normal way of doing things and getting results. This experience becomes problematic at some points in your career when you find yourself in environments or positions where the operational systems in place prevent you from cutting corners. In my line of work, I have met many people with bad experience. The unfortunate thing is that many of them are unaware their long years of experience is a bad one; a period of learning and practicing that which is not professionally right. Sadly.

Experience May not be Transferrable

It is easy to assume that a candidate from a successful firm will bring valuable and usable knowledge about the processes and policies that made that firm so successful, Geoffrey James posted. There are no such guarantees. What recruiters actually do is to take a hedged gamble with an experienced applicant. A person may be successful in one organisation but may not do well in his new organisation for several reasons. Organizational culture, support from team members, compensation and other benefits, organizational leadership, operating environment, are among the reasons.

Experience is Good for Today, not the Future

Experience acquired in performing tasks in the past is not necessarily required to perform tomorrow’s task. Take a look at the value of typists few decades ago. Contrast it to the value placed on typing skills in today’s world of business. Similarly, skills and knowledge deployed to manage risks that prevailed in the past may no more be relevant in even identifying cyber risks to a business today, let alone in managing them. To prepare adequately for the future of your business, you need workers who are well equipped to face the future; innovative, problem-solving, tech-savvy, and emotional intelligence. These are not necessarily dependent on work experience.

Experience May Be Specific to Industries

A successful CEO in the banking industry may not necessarily succeed in same position in a mining company. Similarly, a successful salesman in an auto company may not succeed as a salesman in an insurance company. The differences across industries may be subtle but it is such subtle differences that actually make all the big differences in performance. Consider footballers who excel in one league in Europe only to flop heavily in another on the same continent.

Too Much Depends on Experience

The corporate world places too much weight on experience. Hiring, promotion, compensation, recommendations, and firing are many of practices where experience is given a big consideration. Fortunately, some businesses are moving towards using other objective metrics such as what you can do irrespective of previous experience. This also, is however difficult to assess, hence why many businesses still rely on job experience.

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How To Retain Good Employees

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Retain good employees

“Research indicates that workers have three prime needs: Interesting work, recognition for doing a good job, and being let in on things that are going on in the company.” – Zig Ziglar.  To employ and retain good employees is essential to the success of every business -big or small

After interacting with a good number of people who changed jobs in the pasttn  few years I’ve been able to put together some points which will be helpful to employers who want to retain good workers and bring out the best in bad workers.

If you’re not yet an employer you should still arm yourself with this information. You can subtly pass it on to your employer (hopefully), or who knows, you may become an employer yourself. The points are listed below.

1. Involve employees in decision-making

Decisions made by management will sit well with employees if they are involved in the decision-making process. It’s actually a matter of expediency. Workers usually have a better understanding of what they need to boost productivity than the employers do.

Seeking the opinion of your employees is for consensus building. Your workers will be happy you consulted them. It’s a win-win situation.

2. Lead by example

Workers find it easier to take an employer’s instructions if the employer leads by example. Employees feel discriminated against when superiors don’t adhere to the same standards they preach. Besides it’s easier to whip subordinates in line if the leader is first to toe the line.

Employees won’t argue over rules which are obeyed by even their superiors. It’ll result in less tension at the workplace.

3. Reward hard work

“Brains, like hearts, go where they are appreciated.” -Robert McNamara

The reward system is not only efficient in classrooms; it works perfectly in the workplace too. Rewarding your best workers will motivate them to work better and other workers will feel compelled to work harder.

A workplace without a reward system is soon to lose its best workers and employees will only give their barest minimum if extra effort is not appreciated.

4. Make the working environment fun

Big multi-national companies such as Google and Facebook have working environments designed to have a positive effect on the psyche of their employees. Scientific research has shown that the surroundings an employee works in greatly affects his/her output.

The manner in which an employer relates with employees is also a factor as vital as the surroundings. Maintain a cordial relationship with workers. If workers look forward to coming to work they’ll eventually look forward to staying longer.

5. Be part of the team

“Employees who believe that management is concerned about them as a whole person – not just an employee – are more productive, more satisfied, more fulfilled. Satisfied employees mean satisfied customers, which leads to profitability.”- Anna M. Mulcahy

Workers will stay longer if they have an employer who is sensitive to their needs. The best way to get close and personal with employees is to partake in their work as a team member and not just as a boss giving instructions.

If your subordinates start seeing a friend in you, they’re likely to stick around longer.

6. Don’t overwork your employees

It’s in the best interest of employers to allow employees as much recreational and sleep time as possible. Well-rested workers produce better and have higher work satisfaction, that’s an established fact. It’s bad math to equate long working hours with higher productivity.

As fatigue sets in, workers produce less. But less productivity won’t be the only problem you’ll have to deal with. If you take away the private lives of your workers, they’re eventually going to leave.

The goal of a good employer should be to provide employees with a wonderful experience at work because a happy worker is a good worker. This is one sure way to retain good employees.

 

 

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My Encounter With the Receptionist

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Jobs in Ghana - receptionist

I walked into my brother-in-law’s firm one hot afternoon to run an errand for my sister only to be met at the front desk by a high and mighty receptionist.

She peered at me through her oval shaped spectacles as I walked toward the front desk. Her sharp eyes cut through the air with no regard for personal space defiling my sense of dignity.

“Can I help you?” she said in a condescending tone, chewing on a piece of gum and making unnecessary noises.

Her peach silk shirt hugging her dark melanin skin made her breasts look like they wanted to pop out. She looked irked. I had interrupted her very “important” work on the desktop. My nasal cavity was struggling with her strong masculine cologne.

“Atschoo” I brought out my handkerchief to help myself.

Immediately she pulled back, rolled her eyes and went back to her screen. Then I saw, she was “facebooking”.

“Sorry” I apologized and went back to sit in the waiting area. I picked up my mobile phone and called my brother in- law. Her phone rang almost immediately. After a couple of “yes sirs” she called out my full name escorted me to his office.

Read: Your receptionist is a big representation of your brand

My Advice to Receptionists

Sitting behind a front desk does not in any way give you the audacity to belittle anyone. The job of a receptionist is to receive people irrespective of status or purpose.

They represent their company and if you have a terrible receptionist, you will most likely lose a lot of business.

  1. A receptionist should look presentable. Head to toe they should look honorable. Wear a fitting enough dress but not dressed like they are ready to trade their “goods”
  2. Facial expressions are everything behind the front desk. No matter how unpleasant the person before you seems, smile and pretend that you are nice even if you are not.
  3. Mind your language. Your words carry more weight than you think. A word spoken aptly would refresh a soul. If you talk to people (both customers and other workers) with respect you will be given more than just receiving people to do. If you doubt ask Jeremie of Live 91.9 fm how she started out on radio.
  4. Provide only necessary information to customers. Don’t sell out your boss by talking too much about happenings at work with consumers.
  5. Be attentive. Watch who comes and goes by the second and take details properly. It is your job to know everything happening around you and report appropriately.

Turn people away when they have stated name or purpose and your superiors have asked you to. Even so, you must do this respectfully. Call security when people are causing ruckus.

Jobs in Ghana must be taken seriously else in no time, you lose it to another person. High unemployment levels is forcing many to look for jobs in Ghana and so when you land jobs in Ghana, my advice is you treat it with all the respect and excellence, no matter how low or high it ranks.

 

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