Using Employees As Resources
The Ultimate Employee Motivation Guide: Chapter 8
The term “human resources” is often, mistakenly, solely associated with the administrative department doing the hiring and firing. Human resources, however, literally refers to the personnel who work for an organisation, whose skillsets and abilities make them an invaluable resource to the business. In order to maximise productivity and grow as a business, it’s essential that management are fully aware of the capabilities of their number one asset – their employees.
Capitalising On Capabilities
The hiring of new employees for growth into different areas of speciality may be necessary for some, however, it can be an expensive exercise when you may already have the skills and talents required in your team’s arsenal. The vast majority of professional and skilled workers do not get a chance to exercise their wider knowledge, often finding themselves shoehorned into performing specific and repetitive tasks.
The implications of this include inefficiency, poor job satisfaction and stunted business growth - essentially making a business’s own employees, usually its biggest outgoing expense, one of its most underutilised resources.
Take Action: Arrange one-on-one meetings with the employees in your team to discuss their development. Ask your staff to bring a list of their strengths and ideas to the table - highlighting any other areas of the business they feel they could contribute to outside of their job role – you’ll be surprised at the hidden business talents within your team. Just because someone works within the confines of their role, doesn’t mean they aren’t capable of achieving much more.
They Are the Experts
As a manager, you’re there to guide and develop the resources under your control in order to meet business goals. It’s important not to micromanage employees, as this could potentially stifle their abilities. Your employees went through a rigorous interview process to get to the position they are in today, and, as such, you should recognise that they are the experts at their own job. Rather than trying to fight productivity decline by micromanaging problems, ask your employees for their input and ideas, encouraging an open minded culture and positive approach to problem solving.
Featured Expert: "Employees are the perfect barometer for cultural and technical challenges that threaten to undermine company stability. But unless employers provide an environment where staff can offer raw, honest feedback, these challenges will just stew in their minds, chipping away at productivity, and occasionally wheeled out in hushed voices at after-work socials. Employees know what it's like 'on the ground' and what needs to be done to improve performance. Finding ways to leverage this knowledge should be an absolute priority for employers." – Jamie Lawrence - HRZone
Key Points For Employers:
- A business’s employees are its most valuable asset
- The vast majority of employees possess capabilities well beyond the confines of their job description
- Flexible job roles allow your employees to utilise their broader skillset
- Your employees are the experts at their own professions – their opinions can be invaluable to the success and progression of your business