In yesterday’s post we looked at some helpful tips and tricks for improving your corporate culture. We started it off by looking at ways to collect data, while still keeping the human element intact.
Today, we’re going to wrap this part of the conversation by showing you why it’s important to review progress with your employees more than once a year. I’ll also give you some pointers on advocating how great a place to work your company is, without having to say a word in your own favor!
Ditch The Annual Review
The annual performance review has been a popular mechanism for communicating with employees over the years, but it’s quickly becoming obsolete in our modern employment era. The reason that this practice is falling out of favor is that it’s no longer an efficient strategy for sharing ideas.
In addition to putting a lot of stress on your employees, the annual review only gives you one chance a year to perform a task that is critically important to your business goals – getting the best from your team. Instead of trying to get the whole thing done in one go, try breaking the annual review into four separate 90 day reviews and spread them through the year. There are several benefits to this approach, including:
- It lets you keep each meeting shorter in duration, which causes less stress for everyone involved.
- Employees are able to bring “fresh” information to the conversation
- You’re able to address one or two concerns at a time which frees you up from seeming overly critical.
- This iterative approach allows your employees to focus the bulk of their energy on collaborating and finding solutions with you.
It may take some getting used to, but increasing the frequency of your employee reviews demonstrates to your team that you’re serious about
The Culture Conversation
Perhaps the most difficult aspect of corporate culture is how to get your message across when you’re talking to a new hire candidate. There are a few schools of thought here but typically I would recommend:
- Skip the culture “pitch” altogether and, instead, point candidates to your Glassdoor (or similar) reviews from past and current staff.
- When outsiders (vendors, customers, service providers, etc) deal with your company, they will pick up on elements of your culture, whether they realize it or not. With that said, if you have a repository of client testimonials or customer feedback of any kind, let candidates see that too.
- When someone makes it to a 2nd interview, consider asking them to take the time to “embed” with your staff for a few hours. They’ll get to ask questions and gauge the inner workings of your teams. They’ll also get to see first hand how your team resolves daily problems or conflicts.
- The embedding approach can work both ways! Follow up with any staff members who spent time with the candidate and gauge their impressions on whether that person would be a good fit.
- When the hire is official, celebrate it! Maybe have that person’s direct supervisor take them out to an introductory lunch with a handful of colleagues to start things on the right foot.
- Recognize the value of your employee handbook as a resource on day to day operations for the company, but acknowledge its limits as well. A handbook will never communicate company philosophy as effectively as your own staff (particularly leadership) will be able to.
Use these steps as a guide in your hiring process and you’re well on your way to winning #TheWar4Talent!
In my next post I’m going to give my readers a breakdown of how they can perfect their exit interview process. I’ll also show you ways to build out a multifaceted training and knowledge transfer program that benefits your entire team. I’ll pay particular attention to showing you ways to shore up the skills gap as the electrical contractor workforce continues to get younger and more tech driven.