More than one friend of mine has been fired from a job. I’m not talking about being downsized, going out of business, being a victim of cutbacks, being laid off or, as our friends on the other side of the Pond say, being made redundant. I’m talking fired, dismissed, sacked, given a pink slip. Maybe I just hang out with the wrong people.
Continue reading ““I Love to Fire People””
Almost twenty years ago, before it was fashionable, IVP’s first telecommuter, Dan Reid, set up shop two thousand miles from the home office. We thought it was an incredibly high-tech arrangement since we could communicate by mail, by phone, by fax and by CompuServe–a company that gave us the amazing capability of allowing two PCs (one in Seattle and one in Downers Grove) to exchange data and files via the phone lines. It was whacked-out futuristic in our minds. We actually managed in this primitive arrangement, if you can believe it, for a full five years before the internet connected us all in 1995.
Since then any number of IVP employees have entered the ranks of the telecommuting. But it takes more than technology to make telecommuting successful. Here’s some of the factors we’ve kept in mind that have helped it work for us.
Continue reading “The Art of Telecommuting”
I still vividly remember the company picnics our family would go to when I was young. At the end of August a few hundred people related to the business my dad worked for would gather in a city park in Minneapolis for food and games. A huge cauldron (my childhood memory tells me it was like a 15-foot metal watering troff) had a fire built under it with dozens and dozens of ears of fresh Minnesota corn being boiled. Everyone would gather for Bingo, with each winner taking home a silver dollar. I prized the few I managed to win. The sights and smells of the whole event still linger with me.
Continue reading “Company Picnic”
I’ve been blogging about First, Break All the Rules, calling it the best management book I’ve read. Here’s more of what it says that I find so helpful.
We measure all kinds of things in our organizations—sales, profit, growth, productivity, square footage and so on. But Marcus Buckingham and Curt Coffman say that there’s no measuring stick for a manager’s ability to find, focus and keep talented people. They try to fill in the gap by identifying the key questions every employee asks, consciously or unconsciously (pp. 43ff.).
Continue reading “Why Do Employees Stay?”