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Employees As a Valued Asset

Posted April 09, 2008 8:15 AM

Many organizations today boast that their employees are the key to their success, but dig a little deeper and you may find that those "valued" employees are not actually treated very well. And that can really backfire — it's hard enough to attract skilled employees in the best of circumstances, much harder if a company has a reputation for treating employees poorly. Does your organization reward its valued employees? Do managers realize that real value comes from the operations side?

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#1

Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/09/2008 11:49 AM

Not here, and not in my last job. Most cases companies brag about there employees so they can get new employees and they just 'grind up' the current employees. Case in hand, my boss told me that 50 hours a week was NOT enough and he expected me to work more.

I know how that plays out. When he needs to hire a manager, he's now be able to go outside the company. Justification? Well, I can't get my work done in 40 hours so I must be too inefficient to be promoted.

Here's another case in point. In an employee survey, we were asked if we thought our chances for promotion and raises were based on race or creed. 78% replied yes. When my boss asked why we thought that, I replied that it was 78% because 22% of the employees don't read the policy because if they did it would be 100%. (HR published a statement that they are actively seeking a more 'diverse' workforce.)

Oh don't get me started. I have 10 years to retire and I'm not waiting one day longer. I've had enough.

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#2
In reply to #1

Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/09/2008 6:13 PM

Hey chill little furry fella and hit your golf ball.
We've all seen the 'Quality through People' push...or the 'Employee of the Month' or 'Excellence in Bullshit' drive we know that words are cheap and good bosses are as rare as hen's teeth...
In the event of you having a good boss, you can bet he's fighting tooth and nail to keep his own head (and probably the whole dep't) off the chopping block.

Now look what you've done ...you got me started.

Hey lets bunk off and play a quick 9...

Del

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#3
In reply to #2

Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/09/2008 7:24 PM

Heh....I never knew lean meant starving the employees until I was introduced to the "lean" diet. My clothes will never fit the same........

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#4
In reply to #1

Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/09/2008 8:44 PM

CHHEESEENNN... I follow ya' It's no joke outthere In my opinion everything is about the bottom line down the road but sometimes some people got lucky too. Is like a rullette or the famous 'MURPHY' law as we know it. Kind of a joke really. Non-Win situation. Any way just hang in there until yo'll find your way out down the road eventually. Allset take care for one day at the time really...

Lotto Time...

MC

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#25
In reply to #4

Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

05/23/2008 11:27 AM

what does mc mean..??

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#5
In reply to #1

Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/09/2008 11:07 PM

It is my fervent prayer, and i don't pray often, that you are not an aircraft maintenance technician for any airline I fly.

I can undersand your frustration, I ve had some miserable assignments and bosses too. but I don't understand the "I have 10 years to retire and I'm not waiting one day longer. I've had enough." part.

Meaning no disrespect, but 10 years to go of dissatisfaction and anger at the system does not bode well for you, the employer, or the customers.

How can you get to win-win? 10 years is a long sentence.

I bid you peace.

milo

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#7
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Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/09/2008 11:18 PM

Employees As a Valued Asset is a standard statement on papers only in real life employees are disposable like garbage even famous companies like GE,GM,Ford ,Caterpillar to name a few.

crm

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#9
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Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/10/2008 7:17 AM

I retired 7 years ago for many of the same considerations. I retired 15 days after my minimum retirement situaion and have never looked back.


Only when HR and management people start to truly realize that just "mouthing the words" about how important their people to the company's success rather than acting as such will the situation change. There are some companies (I worked for one early on) that actually do treat their employees well, but most are driven by their immediate needs and forget the longer term and the impact their reactions have on employees.

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#10
In reply to #9

Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/10/2008 8:06 AM

Yeh HR....

We were going through a 'Quality Through People' initiative at the last place I worked.. Some of the Tool Room Guys were at a company football team meeting...they had to get back to work, but the clocking in machine was the opposite direction to the tool room, so one clocked 'em all back in and the others got straight back to work saving time .

Well the HR witch (or should the 'w' be a 'b'?) found out and the yall got disciplined.

(Me too 'cos I stood up for 'em as thier line manager, and goalkeeper )

That was a classic case of preaching one thing..like working smart, being a team, thinking outside the box... and then doing the opposite. I left shortly after that...that was their 2nd strike.

Del

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#11
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Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/10/2008 9:04 AM

In the end talent floats! You have or for that matter everyone has, two choices. Tell your boss to %$&# off and find a more Noble endeavor or stay the course. Consider that most employer options today consist of spoiled college grads wearing I Pod's around there necks, (my apologies to the sapling's) would tell me that you have more value then you think. If your job is not rewarding look elsewhere. I would bet, if it came down to it, your boss would panic if you were leaving. Remember, they can only beat you down if you let then. "Your Destiny is Your Own"

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#18
In reply to #11

Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/10/2008 6:47 PM

"everyone has, two choices"

Exactly!

Congratulations on Good answer #2, former alloy man!

milo

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#23
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Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/11/2008 8:05 AM

Thanks!!!

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#6

Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/09/2008 11:16 PM

I think the "valued employee" mantra is just that and nothing more for many companies and is promoted very much like the "mission statement" that is so prevalent.

We know that most employees are valuable contributors, and guess what? We tend to punish our best performers by assigning them more work and responsibilities while allowing the slackers to do their "ho hum" routine usually for the same rate of pay. In two (2) words-cowardly management.

I now work for a company who seems to appreciate the employees who do a good job, and it is a welcome breath of fresh air. I can remember when I worked as a manager that we conducted employee surveys occassionally, and if negative results were discovered we promised change for the good. Wow, the "change" was short-lived after we stopped having our meetings and got back to work, LOL.

I would occassionally speak to a good employee who was a bit worried or a bit blue, and remind them that they were not "just a number" and that I valued their contribution. I was also occassionally reprimanded by the boss for being a bit too much "old school" when I attempted to correct the behaviour of a slacker or troublemaker.

Prior to the job I have now I spent twenty-six (26) years with a firm who in the long-ago past was a wonderful employer for its hard workers. But as with all things, that changed over the years as poor business decisions were made by the big boys and their continual replacement of corporate staff members. The punishment trickled down to the factory floor and virtually no one was spared.

I do remember that former employer really thumping its chest about being repeatedly selected as one of the "100 Best Places To Work In America" until several years ago. In the later years many of us wondered who were the employees who voted for that prestigeous award and we often blamed the corporate workforce as not a single part of the manufacturing group was able to participate in that survey.

I think it is still true; that 60% of employees will do a good job regardless of how they are treated, 30% need a bit of coddling or prodding to do the right thing, and 10% just cannot be expected to ever do anything productive and long-term. Management must be able to react with everyone though, and get the results that are expected and needed. I will repeat in a slightly different way the statement that I made earlier, and that it is so much easier for a weak manager to hand additional work to his top performers and allow the slackers to remain intimate with the water cooler.

Oh geez, don't get me started!

Best Regards,

Ing. Robert Forbus

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#8
In reply to #6

Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/10/2008 2:35 AM

Ha ha! You said "mission statement" <falls on floor clutching sides>

Saw a great one the other day whilst waiting in recepion of a big company...it was worked from the initial letters of 'Quality' or some such...

While we waited we composed one from the initial letters of 'Bollocks' the double 'L' was tricky but we managed it.

Del

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#12
In reply to #8

Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/10/2008 11:55 AM

Then you have the manager who goes ona management course for a week and comes back a new person for a couple of weeks using all kinds of wierd techniques that I think were meant to motivate us. Then he would slip into his old ways.

I had one turkey who told me to send an e-mail with bad news three levels up the management chain. I was feeling used so I said, "Joe Blow wants me to tell you the following bad news......."

The recipient of the message copied me the message he sent to Joe Blow accusing him of being gutless and the next time he had bad news he was to deliver it himself. He got into the habit of going a couple of levels up the chain and delivering performance appraisals to senior managment. One day he was called down to the senior managers office, a person from HR was there. He was told that there was a voluntary separation plan was in place and as soon as he signed an application for it he would be allowed to leave the room. I think that he got $50,000 as part of the deal but it was easier than actually going through the firing process and he did not have being fired on his record.

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#13

Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/10/2008 12:02 PM

Interesting comments on this. I really did appreciate reading each one.

One thing to remember: companies and corporations and "work places" are not people. Therefore, we cannot expect interest, compassion, understanding or any human quality from a company, corporation or "work place."

On the other hand, we can (and should) expect that from our supervisors and managers. Even the most bizarre corporate policy was created by a human being and is implemented by other human beings.Del commented on the "good boss" as being the one fighting tooth and nail to mitigate the circumstances and keep the department going -- and everyone employed. I heartily agree.

What really frosts my fritter is the stance many managers take of "it's just policy," or "it's just good business," or (worst) "it's just the way it is." So dishonest. If an employees is slacking and being reprimanded or let go, then they need to know why. What did they do to deserve this? Even if the policy was to let two people go because the company is "right sizing," a person still had to pick those two people. The two people deserve to know why they were picked.

So often, decisions are made at some level, but it is left to someone else to implement. And I hate that, too. Years ago, in the Army, I was ordered by my commander to charge one of my subordinates with a crime. After I looked into the situation, it was apparent no crime was committed. So, I refused to press the charge. When ordered again, I told the CO to charge him himself, but I wasn't going to do his dirty work. In the end, the CO had to read him the charges and it ended up being handled administratively rather than in the judicial system. I paid for that later, but it was the right thing to do.

The main thing about all of this is that we are all people dealing with other people and need to keep that foremost in our minds!

Ok, I feel better. Do you ever think that CR4 might be the virtual equivalent of Speakers Corner in Hyde Park?

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#16
In reply to #13

Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/10/2008 1:51 PM

After reading all the threads with interest I come to conclusion that humans are same every where. Same problems,same attitudes, same boss and assistant relations. I had worked in only one organisation for 33 years, you can say I spent my life with it. Reason being I knew if change the job I will new or worst problems may be I will earn more money but no peace of mind. Luckily I had a very good Boss (M.D) who never encouraged politics in the organisation, appritiated problems faced by employees and helped them to solve, company belonged to large group so financialy strong. I had recd rewards for my loyality to the company twice. I had freedoom to take my own decisions when needed. I retired 10 years back at age of 58 (retirement age) and was offered 2 years extension which I humbly refused and I wanted venture out with my own trading business.

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#19
In reply to #13

Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/10/2008 6:52 PM

Nice perspective on workplaces.

Great demonstration of application of personal ethics.

Not virtual equivalent of Speakers Corner in Hyde park This is better-Here, people actually engage. I have come to appreciate many things differently because of what people post here.

milo

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#14

Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/10/2008 1:24 PM

I enjoy hearing the phrase, "You are a valued employee," because I then can reply, "And what is that?" This opening then leads to a discussion about values, reality and managemnt skills.

You may often hear these HR style non-sequiters, which I classify as equal to the "You totally rock" nonsense. The fact is that managers have to drop people into buckets for some undisclosed reason and those that they seem to like always drop into the 'Valued" bucket. Perhaps, managers and employees alike need to gauge their performance on achievement, meeting goals and deadlines, through MANAGED efforts.

The truth is that most 'managers' cannot manage themselves, hence the prospect of extending any knowledge and leadership beyond that point is nil. So, send them to remedial learning on trust, communication and then they may have a chance to become actual managers.

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#15
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Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/10/2008 1:46 PM

I agree.

Most managers are living, breathing proofs of the the Peter Principle: Everyone rises to their level of incompetence. If you are a good worker, you become a team lead. If you are a good team lead, you become a supervisor. If you are a good supervisor, you become a manager. And so on and so on and so on. eventually, though, you hit a level where you aren't that good and you do a moderate to poor job: you have reached your level of incompetence.

HR systems generally facilitate that movement. If you are successful as a worker, then you get promoted into management. As a manager, now you have to "fill the buckets" as Guest put it. Whatever you did or knew as a worker doesn't really apply to management. It applies to doing whatever the job was. If you don't fill the buckets, then you fail as a manager (in the eyes of HR).

On the other hand, if you exercise leadership, you will teach/coach/supervise your team into getting done what the company needs doing to stay in business. Hopefully, the higher-ups will see this and reward it, or at least not interfere. The problem is that they may have reached their level of incompetence and are trying to fill their buckets.

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#21
In reply to #15

Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/11/2008 12:26 AM

In the companies that I've been and in my current employer, the HR system maintains a dual career path for employees...Leadership track and Technical track.

I've seen how a company loose a good bunch of good engineers to later on become bad supervisors or managers . This is even after the company had invested on these guys all the necessary trainings and seminars on management and people handling skills. The leadership track is for those that have a knack for managing people and still being good technically in their job. The good technical guys do not necessarily have to be promoted to become supervisors or managers. He will be rewarded in compensation and perks equivalent to those who becomes supervisors or managers and still be good in doing what they do best...as individual contributors.

The climate surveys and exit interviews that our HR regularly does to the employees reveals that the reason most employees leave the company is not because of the company itself but because of his bad relationship with his immediate supervisor or boss.

We were also hit by lay-offs in the past. the HR term for this is 'right sizing' .The way we did it here is to base it on performance.The ranking and rating system has to be very transparent to the employees. Scorecards and metrics are posted and everybody knows where he is situated with regard to the rest of the team. So when the time comes, without anybody telling them who will be it, the employee themselves would have an idea of what is coming their way.

In the end, it really boils down to trust, open communication, and Integrity.

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#17

Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/10/2008 2:10 PM

Of course employees are valued parts of a company - every time a major publicly-held company runs into a problem, they lay off a number of employees in order to boost their stock price. New stock price minus old stock price times number of shares in existence divided by number of employees laid off to get this to happen equals the value of the employee.

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#20

Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/10/2008 11:18 PM

I think it is all related to the push (greed?) for companies to obtain quick turnarounds for the short term results. The problem (standard?) is that many (most?) companies do not "invest" in their employees anymore. It takes time to build a dedicated, skilled and reliable work force. Unfortunately, that concept is undervalued and viewed as "inefficient" or is not "cost effective".

I think I will throw-up if I have to hear the "efficiency" speech again.

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#22
In reply to #20

Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/11/2008 3:45 AM

Grand example is what happened to BellCaoporation if you can refer to a Heartbreaking article in IEEE Spectrum of 2005 Issues you will find out for yourselves how a grate company like Bell corporation went down the drain and the welth of resulting trained man power benefited country like china and other third world countries

crm

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#24

Re: Employees As a Valued Asset

04/16/2008 9:59 PM

I also agree with the argument that Employees are never treated as assets. I was learning accounting and got to know that all the physical equipment are taken in to account and there depression or life with company is known. On same terms why employees are taken in to account when they term them as assets. Difference between machines and us is we can get our selves updated with current needs and our asset value increases. But we need to demonstrate the same to re-gain our asset value. Other View: I believe in this business world and also other wise people tend to have lots of expectation from others. Its important to have expectation but we need to express them from time to time. This is valid to both the side i.e to ourselves and our management. No person in this world is going to think better for you than your selves. If one feels he deservers a best promotion one should speak and grab it with dignity and challenge the opponent. -------------------------------- We always admire people who take risks

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