The one question that will transform your performance reviews

You can throw company happy hours, host team dinners, buy pinball machines and eliminate job titles all you want.  But once you put an employee in a performance review, there is a strict hierarchy of who reports to whom.  And that hierarchy is what makes it challenging to get good feedback: the employee knows you…

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The formula for happy employees

One of the top three challenges that new employees have is unmet expectations: the job is not what they expected it to be.  That means difficult conversations where they are telling you that they expected something different, and what are you going to do about it. Or even worse: they quit.  One simple fix will…

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How to talk to problem employees

Happy employees

Nothing you tell your employees should ever come as a surprise.  This is especially important with bad news.  If you are telling an employee that they are at risk of being fired, and they had no idea, then you are the one who made a mistake, not them.  But don’t tell your employees about their…

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When company values become harmful

I’ll get straight to the point: company values become harmful when they are not enforced.  This happens more often than you would imagine, and usually because of good intentions. But the harm is always greater than the perk.  The wrong way to use values Let’s say you claim a core value at your business is…

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The Glue Your Business Needs Every Day

What has to happen in your business?  When people think of business functions, they tend to list marketing, sales, finance, human resources, maybe production as well.  However you make your list, there is one fundamental business function that ties all the rest together; the glue that makes it work, if you will.  Management.  Collaborate more…

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How are you hiring?

You have a role; now it’s time to fill it.  Use the work you did to know why you are hiring and who you are hiring to improve how you are hiring.  Hiring skills How important is skill expertise in hiring?  It turns out: not very.  Skill expertise is not to be ignored, of course,…

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Who are you hiring?

You have described the problem you are solving and used that to decide what role you need to hire.  Let’s now transition to “who” you have to hire.  And yes, I did say transition. It’s a journey, not a step.  Hiring for impact Answer one question before making further decisions: Which roles have the biggest…

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Why are you hiring?

Why did you hire your last employee?  When asking business owners why they are hiring, their answers are usually a version of the following: they have gotten too busy, there is too much to do in their business, their client base has grown, they feel it is time to bring on a [insert job title:…

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The Formula to Balance Your Business

Opportunity & risk.  Gains & losses.  Promotion & Prevention.  These are all ways to describe the balance a business needs to succeed. You can’t avoid risk, and you – hopefully – have plenty of opportunities. Making these two things coexist is important, but one of the hardest things to do.  Business potential Back in 2017,…

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How to plan to be spontaneous

“The last thing I want for my business is a plan or a process. I need my people to be spontaneous and adaptable”.  This is an actual quote from a business owner who is terrified of turning his employees into automatons.  His fear is valid: at what point is too much instruction removing any capability…

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