So Difficult About Being Profitable?
are made up of people, and people have minds of their own.
For some business owners, that’s a problem. What many
business owners haven’t figured out yet is how to use
that to the advantage of everyone. How can you design the
business so everyone wins?
Someone called me yesterday asking for my help with his business.
He said he is a General Contractor, and then he proceeded
to tell me the recent history of 26 years in business. Mostly
what he related were his frustrations and problems with his
employees, who have ranged from 35 total, down to 9 presently.
He relayed that he has tried everything to motivate them,
and nothing has worked so far, including profit-sharing plans.
My response to this: I have found the best way to motivate
employees is to invite them to take on the leadership, responsibility,
and accountability you would like them to have. If you want
them to act more like an owner, you have to give them the
freedom and opportunity to do so. How you invite them makes
all the difference in the world, as many employees’
behavior is conditioned and institutionalized to keep acting
just like an employee.
most change attempts fail
of the attempts I have seen to motivate employees fail because
the basic structure of the change is command and control.
Either an owner or a manager, in one form or another, is merely
telling employees what to do. At its best, employees do exactly
what they’re told, and at its worst they do only
what they’re told, they don’t think for themselves.
order to inspire a new way of thinking and behavior, you need
to rebuild your company from the ground up. Put in systems
and practices that encourage your key people to think for
themselves, manage their work from an outcome orientation
rather than a task orientation, and put in key performance
measures everywhere to help clarify exactly what you expect
from them. If you're interested in learning more about how
to do this with your company, give me a call!
415-258-2873 or 415-699-8512
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