(Time to read this Blog is about 3 minutes)

Before we get to the main topic, here are a few things to get you thinking:

  1. My Biz Quote of the week:
    “Companies often say that their employees are their most important asset.  But many of those same companies treat their employees as if they’re ‘disposable’.  If you treat them as if they’re disposable, they’ll behave as if they’re disposable.”
    …Donald Cooper
  1. This is the perfect time of year for my famous Scallop Chowder!   Every year at this time I remind folks about my very own “world’s best” recipe for Scallop Chowder.
    Readers all over the world write to say that this delicious, hearty chowder is now an annual tradition at their house.  One of our readers made a giant pot of it for his employees, as a special treat. They loved it.  To access the recipe, click here.
  2. It’s extra important to give ‘local’ gifts this year: Local businesses are struggling.  We all know that.  You can help them by giving ‘local’ gifts or Gift Certificates this holiday season.  If you do, they can stay in business to serve you in the future.

Now, to this week’s important topic:


Is your business a desirable place to work?

We all know that finding, engaging and retaining talented, productive staff, or any staff, is the biggest business challenge for most of us right now.  So, there’s never been a more important time to be a ‘desirable place to work’.

Below are my 10 questions to get you thinking and to calculate the ‘Desirability Score’ for your business.  Discuss these 10 questions with your management and supervisory Team and a cross-section of your front-line Team. From those conversations, tally the average ‘Desirability Score’ for each of the 10 questions and then calculate your overall ‘Total Desirability Score’.  Rank the 10 factors in declining order of concern starting with the question that received the lowest ‘Desirability Score’ and ending with the highest ‘Desirability Score’. 

From this analysis will come a series of frank conversations about what needs improving, fixing or doing to become a more desirable place to work.

The 10 ‘Desirable Place To Work’ Questions: 

  1. Is our industry an attractive, interesting and ‘in’ industry for smart people who want to get ahead and build a career?  Score ___ out of 10.
  2. Are we in a desirable community and location that’s attractive and accessible to the people we need? Score ___ out of 10. 
  3. Is our company fair, decent and ethical in a way that makes good people proud to work here?  Score ___ out of 10.
  4. Is our pay and benefit package fair and competitive for the quality of people we need or want to attract, engage and retain? Score ___ out of 10. 
  5. Have we created a welcoming, uplifting, diverse, inclusive, safe and joyful culture with flexible working conditions?  Are we responsive to employee concerns?  Score ___ out of 10. 
  6. Are there clear and achievable performance expectations and is performance reviewed and discussed regularly, fairly and helpfully? Score ___ out of 10. 
  7. Are our leaders, managers and supervisors capable, effective and fair?  Do they coach, grow and empower their team, or do they micro-manage? Do they encourage employee input and ideas, or do they dictate?     Score ___ out of 10. 
  8. Do our leaders, managers and supervisors listen intently and respectfully and communicate clearly, kindly and effectively?  Are they congruent and consistent in their words and actions? Score ___ out of 10.   
  9. Is there a clear and well communicated Vision for the future of the business and do we offer excellent career growth opportunities for those with the ability and desire to grow?

Score ___ out of 10.   

  1. Do we appropriately and fairly acknowledge and reward excellent team and individual performance? And do we deal consistently, quickly and fairly with non-performance? Score ___ out of 10. 

Our total ‘Desirability Score’ out of a possible 100 is  ______.

Questions to consider:

To help you in your ‘brave conversations’ about what’s to be learned from these 10 questions, consider the following additional questions…and add your own, as you think of them:  

  1. Are there major discrepancies in the perceptions and ‘Desirability Scores’ among our leaders, managers and supervisors?
  2. Are there major discrepancies in the perceptions and scores between our management and supervisory Team and our front-line staff?
  3. Are there employment concerns on the part of our front-line staff that are inaccurate, which suggests that we’ve been ineffective in communicating the desirability of working with us? What might those inaccuracies be and how will we correct this?  
  4. As leaders, managers and supervisors what do our individual scores tell us about how self-aware we are about what it’s like to work here?
  5. What do the individual ‘Desirability Scores’ tell us about what needs improving, fixing or doing in our business to make working here more desirable to top-quality leaders, managers, supervisors and front-line people?
  6. What do the results of this Survey tell us about which of our leaders, managers or supervisors need coaching on how to improve the employment experience they deliver to their Team?
  7. Are we effective at telling employment candidates about our culture, values, purpose, vision, commitments, expectations and opportunities? If so, how will we fix this?
  8. What is our ‘Employer Brand’ (our reputation as a place to work)? What do current and past employees say about us?   With ‘employment experience’ sites like Glassdoor, current and past employees can anonymously rate the pros and cons of working with us and comment on management.   Are we listed on Glassdoor or other employment rating sites and, if so, what is our rating and what are the comments?       

Note from Donald:  Based on what you learn from this important exercise, what decisions will you commit to make and what actions will you commit to take?   For each action you commit to take, get specific about what will be done, by whom, by when, at what cost, with what result, measured how and rewarded how?  And then, who will follow up, at what agreed intervals, to make sure that progress is being made?  This is the ‘magic formula’ for effective implementation!



That’s it for this week…

Stay safe…live brilliantly!       

Donald Cooper 

Donald Cooper speaks and coaches internationally on management, marketing, and profitability.  He can be reached by email at donald@donaldcooper.com in Toronto, Canada.

One Response to Is your business a desirable place to work?
  1. Comment *How about small 5-7 person companies? Some of these questions may apply with variation, however, the lack of benefits that can be offered, is a problem with supply issues and competitive businesses offering more glamourous jobs. When the owner/boss is in a very difficult business in staying ahead of the online and big box stores and there prices and structure
    It’s a dog eat dog world out here and I’m wearing milkbone underwear.

    Any advice for small businesses would be great!

    Derek Franklin
    The Hardware Store-Atchison Kansas


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sign up for Donald's Free!
"Straight Talk" Business Coach Blog

Sign up to get valuable and insightful tips weekly!
Simple Share ButtonsIt's only fair to share
Simple Share Buttons