Because, top performers live in a virtuous cycle of great output, great feedback, more great output and more great feedback. They get much love on a daily basis that the extra PR make them much happier. More important is to learn from your best performers. – Laszlo Bock, Senior Vice President of People Operations at Google, Inc.Bock asserted how every company has the seeds of its future success ingrained in its best people. But most companies fail as because they fail to notice the seeds. Google study its best people very closely, as Jennifer Kurkoski and Brian Welle co- founded the People and Innovation Lab (PiLab), an internal research team and think tank with mandate to advance the science of how people experience work. PiLab scientists had PhDs on sociology, psychology, economics and organizational behavior and have moved into leadership roles to apply their research skills of organizational benefits and meet challenges. Michelle Donovan- director of talent development and Neal Patel, technical project lead of the human/social dynamics program was looking for a way to optimize management and have it organically fit within Google’s unique culture. They came up with their flagship program- Project Oxygen. Through this project they found that switching employees from lowest quartile (based on performance and happiness index of team) of managers to highest quartile of managers performed better. Likewise, a reverse mobility of employees i.e. from higher quartile to lower quartile will inevitably diminish the overall performance and confidence of the employee. Based on this research, Patel and Donovan developed a semiannual “Upward Feedback Survey”- a tool to rate their respective managers anonymously. Each manager then gets a report with percentages of favorable answers, measured against their last report and the global average. Google strongly encourage its managers to share the results with their respective teams to foster a discussion on how to lead better.
Debate is all about intellectual exhibition of your knowledge and beliefs. In ancient times debate used to be treated as an effective faculty at King’s court. Debate is a sheer manifestation of sanity and rationality. Nothing seems more appealing than a man/ woman driven by logic and sanity of mind. Since long people with debatable attribute are much in demand in every spheres of life. Be it Socrates, Chanakya, Birbal or even Elizabethan Portia (as described by The Bard himself).
Technically,debate involves more of politics than logic. Dialectic has always been the key for any solemn debate sessions.
This article is intended to suggest some key factors essential to win over any debate sessions.
- Eye for knowledge: the most essential attribute needed to win over a debate is your inquisitiveness. In a world full of followers, it’s our inquisitiveness that gives us an added advantage over others. Our inquisitiveness helps us to explore spaces of life and our individual minds. Debatable characteristic emerges from the ambit of our individual knowledge and wisdom. Remember, all human brains are hardwired to act or judge as per precincts of their knowledge. So always keep replenishing your mind with more and effective knowledge.
- Listen: Ears to see, eyes to hear- yes, our ears can do wonders if we could apprehend the virtue of listening. A good speaker is the one who listens. How can you win a debate without being a good listener?
- Note: Have you ever heard the term “dream incubators”? They are people who love to incubate their dreams for varied reasons. Writing or taking note is the only way how we can incubate our dreams. Most successful entrepreneurs, leaders, bureaucrats have confessed about their habit of taking notes. It’s as good a habit as washing hands before eating. Notes help us to recapitulate, analyze, apprehend, secure and use information for imperative use.
- Frame: is the dish on which we serve the food, named logic. This is the way how we want to position or place our logic. One of the most crucial aspect of debate is to direct your opposition towards your desired conclusion. Framing helps in channelizing the interaction or monitoring the course of debate. Better the framing better is your chances to nail your opponent.
- Synthesize: Synthesis is a key attribute which will propel you ahead of your league. During any debate session, we synthesize our knowledge and experience to exploit the thought process of our opponents. It is said that human brain is the only organ in our body which manifests the layers of human evolution. The oldest part of our brain is called reptilian brain which caters our instincts, followed by limbic brain guides our feelings and emotions. While the outer most layers is called neo cortex, it is responsible for rational thinking and actions. While debating we synthesize our knowledge and experience in a way that will affect these aforementioned brain layers of our opponents.
- Deliver: This is the most crucial factor of any debate sessions. As no matter how logical you are or how good research had been- unless you deliverance is appealing, you can never win a debate sessions. Every interaction or debate sessions is a one is to one bargaining game, where the dominant player is most likely to win the game. Hence, domination of your opponent can augur you further towards your triumphant glory. You may do this by proper voice, intonation, body language, pronunciation and eye movement. People listen to what you say, but to make a people think give a pause amidst your sentences. These pauses make your listeners analyze and apprehend your sentences. Even there are techniques like palm down gesture and sudden glance at the top hairline of your opponent often plays a significant role in rob your opponent off his/ her confidence.
- Show Gratitude: ‘Thank you’ when combined with a smile is said to have a tremendous psychological impact on the person saying it or the person for whom the gratitude is meant to be. Gratitude is said to be the primeval virtue possessed by all leaders. So in order to prove your worth.
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Is your business facing high attrition? Does performance of your best employee drooping suddenly? Are your employees seeking leave with illegit excuses? Are you getting compelled to atrite any of your old employees on disciplinarian grounds? Then there must be some serious problem lurking high on your business and it’s prospect.
Even though the problems are seemingly diverse but if remain ignored, these problems certainly culminates in irrevocable loss of business and revenue prospect. Hence, no matter what excuses do they give but high attrition, drooping performance of employees are issues awaiting your priority and interference.
Also read: Google HR boss explains the only 2 ways to keep your best people from quitting
I believe that when a good employee leaves a company, he/ she loses a job but the company loses a fortune. My sheer experience in HR and critical analysis of behavioral science vastly substantiate the popular belief- employees don’t leave the organization, they leave their manager/s. Managerial incompetence is the bedrock of high attrition and dearth of employee engagement.
Job role of managers in start up generation is more than that of mere accountants, supervisors or ring masters wielding whip at his employees. They should play the role of a visionary and act as doting guardians to their employees. They should learn to discern good from evil. Hence most effective managers are the ones with deeper understanding of subjects and human psyche. Managers, being the leader should be exemplary performers, motivators and honest influencers.
So what are the managerial flaws which compel good employees leave his/her job or decline employee engagement in any organization? All that I could figure out are as follows:
1) When quality of employees surpass qualities of the manager.
A good employee is not born overnight. Qualities that make an employee good are his/her long nurtured honesty, experience, family values, education, upbringing, insights, hard work, commitment and his past struggles. A credible manager sans ego should never leave a chance to admire those atttributes in others and take lessons from that person, eeven if he/ she is a junior employee. This how effecient managers learn to upgrade his business acumen and governing skills. We should remember that every dignified employee hates to get governed by incompetent managers.
2) Filthy politics in the guise of healthy competition.
The difference between the two are droll. Competitive attitude within an organization is the only attribute desired by both employees and employers. In mindless pursuit of impressing his seniors, managers tend to induce superficially concocted rivalry within organization. The manager gets elated when any of his employees bags incentives, he starts believing his connived rivalry to be the key factor. Whereas its not the rivalry but the alluring incentive scheme which might have driven the employee to excel. Thus making the existence of managers as useless and virulent to the organization.
3) Exemplifying wrong employees
- a) By misrepresentation: Exemplifying wrong employees by manipulation of performance reports. Misrepresentations can be of two ways. Either concocted reports are being escalated to higher authorities or suppressing requisite information from the concerned employee with the objective of deliberate misguidance.
- b) By attitude: Attitude of the manager towards all employees should be equal. Mentoring a team does not mean that the manager should be disgraceful to employees who doesn’t feed his/ her ego. Often its the manager who instigate and drives the behavior of other employees towards the subversive employee. Even sexual advancements by managers at workplaces are crucial factors leading to enormous attrition.
- c) Payment deferrals at random: This problem is mostly common in unorganized industries or mid level private companies. Egoist managers tend to exercise their authority to feed their own ego. Instead of regarding their designation as responsibility they start considering it as an opportunity to execute their obnoxious intentions. Deferred salary is an integral part of any organization which may cause mainly due to paucity in operational revenue. But handling such situation demands honest and competent leadership. Forwarding salary to selective employees at random; irrespective of designation, performance or intent will stoop organizational performance irrevocably.
- d) Ignoring their contributions: A good employee tends to justify himself to the company on basis of his salary but the best employee not only justifies his salary but also justifies the trust adhered to it. Passionate employees always try to look out for ways to improve their productivity and contributions to the company. The additional service which an employee renders to the company should always be recognized and appreciated. They try new avenues to increase prospects of his company as well as his own self. Managers failing to recognize and admire these resources drive the organization to HR bankruptcy.
4) Unproductive, irksome rules and regulations:
During Soviet regime, Maxim Gorky once during a conversation with his friend, V.I.Lenin did express his desire to become an official member of Bolshevik Party. Lenin negated his proposition and explained how stringent rules and disciplines of a communist party might rob Gorky off his free flowing creativity and spontaneity. Till his last days, Gorky never became a member of Bolsheviks.Yes, too much of rules and disciplines can worsen creativity and organizational performance. This is why Google has been voted 150th times for being the best company to work with. Irrelevant rules and regulations worsen organizational productivity more than anything else. Rules are imperative but leaders should know that if needed, how to tamper it for organizational benefits.
5) Myopic management
“Remember, that in 70s and 80s, there were people who negated all possibilities of computer in the process of advocating typewriters.”
Myopic management at present is the greatest threat for global business fraternity. For some myopia is a result of unprecedented accidents while for some its a significant excuse to maintain status quo. Reforms in educational system since 90s has noted a remarkable upsurge in employee workforce. However ascent of leaders with entrepreneurial potential has taken a deep plunge. Most business houses prefer to nurture and exemplify status quoists instead of risk taking leaders. Remember, that in 70s and 80s, there were people who negated all possibilities of computer while advocating for typewriters. In today’s dynamic market scenario, being non- chalant is utterly suicidal. Overtly obsequious employee tends to shirk responsibilities and decisions which may affect status quo of the organization. Businesses fail mostly in lieu of myopic perspectives of their managers. Though these status quoists can also be indispensable part of an organization- only if their job role demands them to be replicators instead of initiators (read managers/ C suite).
It’s clear that managing for the short term comes at the expense of firms’ long-term value. But what can be done to limit this type of behavior? One reason that managers engage in myopic management is that they are evaluated on current financial performance. Often, managers are rewarded for the gains but not penalized for the losses, or they are able to move on before negative consequences transpire. Companies can reduce incentives for myopic behavior by increasing vesting periods and delaying payoffs to departing executives. Firms should also look beyond their current earnings and share prices when setting performance evaluation standards. Consideration should be given to a variety of factors, both financial and non-financial. The non-financial ones need to reflect strategies with long-term value implications. For example, many of the key aspects of a brand’s strength, such as differentiation from the competition or the degree to which customers perceive the brand as relevant to their needs, can be measured through surveys and then linked to compensation. Long-term performance measures will motivate executives to manage with an eye to the future.
Every organization should have effective HR policies to distinguish leaders from bosses. Myopic management are most likely to nurture and bequeath the same stigma to their next line of professionals.
Also Read: Animation, gateway to media industry
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