WANTED: Unproductive Employee!

“We have an immediate opening for an unproductive employee to work for an under achieving organization headed for bankruptcy.  The right individual must be willing to avoid work, and be a master-procrastinator to ensure that none of our business goals are achieved.

We are not about to consider anyone that practices any kind of accountability.  They must not take ownership or responsibility for errors, and being a master-blamer is a real plus!  Pointing fingers and laying blame on others are hallmarks of our company and we can ill afford to change our culture at this late stage.

Time management, project management and operations management are foreign concepts in all of our divisions, so these would be worthless skills if brought to the table.  In fact, if the right candidate can demonstrate a lack of returning phone calls and emails we would be ultra impressed!

Finally, we find the whole concept of being a learning organization the real challenge any new employee must resist with all of their fiber.  Rogue individuals can undermine our determination to avoid new skills and knowledge that could change our current incompetence levels.  Our managers work overtime (energy not hours) to monitor all employee activity and anything that involves training, professional development, or social learning are immediate grounds for termination.

All interested parties should forward their interest in working for our company to our Inhuman Resources Department.  They are our final line of defense in weeding out any potential hire that could change our company mission of being the worst employer of choice in America!”


Fact is that no company ever spends the money to advertise for an unproductive employee.  Yet, every company has these individuals on the payroll.  They accomplish little, blame others, can’t even return emails or phone calls and yet collect a paycheck.

Lacking The Time To THINK

I attended a webinar today presented my Lisa Bodwell, the CEO of FutureThink on “Hitting The Reset.”  She began with a staggering statistic about the lack of time we have to think these days, a strategy that allows creativity and problem solving.  She said the results of the research was a whopping 5% of our time is spent in the “thinking” mode.  It is no wonder we can’t dig ourselves out of this economic recession, depression or whatever you want to call it.  We need new ideas and positive changes and that requires time to think.

This was my first experience with FutureThink and Lisa Bodwell.  If you have not taken a serious look at the company and their training techniques, run don’t walk to their website!

The ideas that were expressed in the webinar are not ones I feel comfortable sharing in this space because of copywrite issues.  Yet, I can tell you I walked away with my mind clicking and truly jazzed at some of the possibilities if we could get people to think more often and empower them to change some of the things that get in our way of being productive and problem solving.

So rather than take anymore of your time reading this blog, go to www.futurethink.com and start thinking differently right now!

Rest, Relax and Rejuvenate

Summer is officially here, and we began recently with the traditional 4th of July celebrations.  I don’t know about your neighborhood, but the fireworks have been going off for weeks, and they shot off enough this past weekend to put both of my dogs into an insane asylum, and I was about to take their tranquilizers to get an hour’s sleep.

For those of you Analytical folks out there, I realize that the first day of summer was June 21st, as that was also my birthday.  Another year older, Whoopee!  However, the reason I say that our Nation’s Birthday is a better kick off day is most people seem to begin their summer vacations this week.

I’m all for vacations, and think our minds would be better focused if we took more time off to rest, relax and rejuvenate a little.  What bugs the heck out of me is that the week off creates so much back log for most business leaders.  The number one reason for delaying a decision is that a vacation prevents people from thinking about anything 2 weeks before and 2 weeks after their week off.

I had someone this week that I nearly lost my usual composure with when they said that they plan absolutely zero appointments after they are gone for vacation.  Okay, I’ll bite, I said, “Why?  She said well I have so many emails to read it takes me all week.  Being the ultimate time manager myself (you don’t teach Franklin Covey for 14 years and not pick up something) I suggested that she use a very easy system of sorting, deleting out the junk, and responding to her highest priorities first.  This is where I almost lost it; she said “oh I don’t get a chance to respond to my emails until the week after that!”

Too bad I like being productive with my time, as getting paid to spend a week on vacation, and then spending the next two weeks getting paid to read and then respond to my email, almost sounds good.  Needless to say, this lady was very honest with me and in the end I really appreciate knowing that it will likely be another month before she can even think of finding time to make a decision.

Yet we need to ask ourselves are we doing our company any service if we are hired to do a job, and we accept a check and not earn it?  Folks, if I can impart anything today that makes a difference, I would suggest we all get a firm hold on the reality of our economy.  With unemployment closing in on 10%, this means there are plenty of people out there that can do your job!  There are plenty of people who would accept less pay than you are getting, and your employer doesn’t even have to look very hard for your replacement as they are lined up down the block ready to go to work.

So Rest, Relax and Rejuvenate when the time is right; but, do yourself a favor and put in a full day’s effort when you are at work.  Earn your salary before it is taken away or given to someone else, unless of course you want your next vacation to last for a year or so!

Creating Managers That Can Lead

Anyone that is reading this blog, knows well the value of management and leadership training, and the positive things that come from managers that can lead.  I have to wonder then why so many companies either avoid solid management / leadership development or train in such a light manner to have no effect at all.

Is it really money that prevents training?  Lack of budgets for this kind of training is by far the number one excuse for delaying or avoiding all together management development.  Although this a convenient excuse that can never really be verified, I’d like to float my own theory.

Since most initiatives like management development stem from a need for succession planning, the director of human resources is the normal driving force.  Although this person needs to have senior management support, they really are the key influencer to selling people on this kind of training.  Even if the organization has a competent training manager, Human Resources is the direct beneficiary or client of well-trained managers.  Or are they?

Normally you would think that Human Resources would thrive on well-trained managers that can handle issues themselves and prevent problems, thus involving Human Resource personnel less often.  This my friends is a good strategy.  However, if Human Resources is into empire building, and remaining indispensible, it is counter productive to that goal to have well-trained manager.

Managers that are unskilled cause personnel issues that need Human Resources to intervene.  They also cause employees to underperform, get fired or quit.  Those actions require more Human Resource intervention with performance management and recruitment.

Under performing managers cause problems that only Human Resources can solve.  Talk about job security!!!  Why on earth would you ever train a manager to be self-sufficient?  You need these managers to cause problems if you want to remain center stage, and grow the size of your department and influence.

The basis of my theory is that I find that companies that deploy management and leadership training, focusing on skill development have engaged Human Resources that partner with the business for success.  Companies that don’t train managers to lead and often paired with Human Resources that are inefficient, super busy, and working overtime to demonstrate their value.

In my opinion, value is helping others to succeed.  Value is getting out-of-the-way and empowering people.  Value is creating manager that can lead!