01 Dec

Employer of Choice – Just Say No!

We all see the words.  Businesses promote it as if somehow it makes them unique; “WE are an employer of choice.”  “Join us here at XYZ Company; We are an Employer of Choice.”  As if that is the only reason anyone would want to work for any company.  There are many problems with being an Employer of Choice (EOC).  To begin with, any employer can simply decide they are one.

Further, everyone seemingly is one.  There is nothing unique about being an employer of choice.  THAT is the problem; being an employer of choice does nothing for your business.

So what’s the solution?

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03 Nov

Find The Root-Cause Then Solve Your Problem

Last week I wrote about the simplicity of Problem Solving.  A key component of solving any problem is to first identify the problems root-cause.  All too often we address symptoms of a problem and not its root-cause.  Imagine after feeling hot all we did was unbutton a collar or took off a sweater only later to discover that we have a fever and the cause of that fever is an infection from a simple cut.  Trying to solve a business problem based on symptoms alone could end with the same result – you could succumb.  How do you find the root-cause of a situation?  What steps do you follow?

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27 Oct

Going Through the Motions Isn’t Problem-Solving

No one likes problems.  We either try and resolve them or we try to avoid them.  We avoid them by doing nothing or by simply ignoring they exist hoping they will go away.  Sometimes ignoring a problem is a good strategy as not all problems need or deserve our energies to resolve.  However, when we decide to work on resolving a problem how we proceed is important to achieving an outcome.  Too many times I have seen organizations and individuals focus on the process instead of the desired results.  In other words, they spend more time talking about the problem, talking about the problem-solving process and little to no time about executing the solutions to the problems they are trying to fix.  This process focus isn’t problem-solving.

So what is problem-solving?

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13 Oct

Covering Up Culture With Compensation

Our current talent shortage is not the first one American Business has faced.  We saw it during the Dot-Com bubble, and different industries have experienced it in a more specific way.  During each of these periods of shortage one trend is constant; to compete businesses feel they must increase the compensation of their employees to attract and retain them.  It doesn’t work.  Someone will always pay more and business will continue to raise wages to be competitive.

More often than not the number one reason that business does not succeed in attracting and retaining talent is their culture.  A friend of mine, Mark Leupold of Express Employment Professionals in Appleton Wisconsin describes this business worst practice as “Covering Up Culture With Compensation.”  With qualification, he is profoundly correct. We are not suggesting that you not pay fair or competitive wages, but we are suggesting that there are other methods that not only are more effective but won’t harm your business.  What does that mean?

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29 Sep

Are Mergers & Acquisitions The Best, Way to Grow Your Business?

Acquisitions.  Mergers and Acquisitions, M&A.  Sounds exciting, strategic, the art of making business deals.  It can be.  As a veteran of over 70 completed M&A actions and another 30 or so that never completed I can tell you from my own experience just how exciting they can be.  For many businesses, this is an excellent strategy for growth.  For others, this could be a recipe for disaster.  A KPMG study  reported on in Moneywatch states that 83% of merger and acquisition deals fail. The article suggests this is because of mismanagement of risk, price, strategy, cultures, or management capacity.  The common reason is poor planning.  What can you do to help ensure that if you use this strategy, your M&A action succeeds?

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