(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 or smiling:
- My Biz Quote of the week:
“Many people say, ‘I’d be happy if I had a glamorous job.’ A glamorous job is when you love what you do, who you do it for and who you do it with. Other than that, glamour is an illusion.”
- Quick Biz Tip:
Educating your Team about the real math of profitability.
A Survey I read a while back showed that the most people think that businesses make a profit of 24% to 40% of sales, when the reality is that, on average, businesses generate an after-tax profit of about 4% to 5% on sales.
There’s a massive disconnect between what people believe about business profitability and the reality of profitability. Simply put, most people think that owning a business is a ‘licence to print money’…and it isn’t.
So, it’s important that your Team members understand the real math of profitability to focus them on the importance of efficiency and productivity. For example, one of my Biz Coaching Clients, in the construction industry has a Shop Rate of $80 per hour. His crew are paid about $30 per hour each and they assumed that the rest ($50 per hour) goes into the boss’s pocket.
What they didn’t realize is that the $50 an hour has to pay for Employee Benefits, Project Designers, Crew Supervisors, Purchasing, Accounting, other Head Office staff, Rent, Insurance, Utilities, machinery, equipment and trucks, interest on Bank financing, Sales & Marketing expense and Federal, Provincial and local taxes. What’s left for the business owner out of the $50, after all those expenses, is about 2 cents.
The real math of profitability will be a real eye-opener for your Team. How will you convey this important information to them?
- Overconfident drivers: In a recent Survey, 82% of people said they are in the top 30% of safe drivers.
- I can be helpful! If you have an industry or company Conference coming up in 2023 where my bottom-line insights on management, marketing and profitability can be helpful, I’m easy to find at firstname.lastname@example.org. Our most requested topics are:
- ‘Accelerate Your Business…the ‘straight goods’ on how to sell more, manage smarter, grow your bottom line…and have a life.’
- ‘Create Your Compelling Service Advantage…how to amaze your customers, differentiate your business…and grow your bottom line!’
- ‘Winning the Talent Wars…8 essential steps to attracting, developing, leading & engaging a top-performing team.’
- ‘Vision Critical…how to manage, innovate and thrive in a very different tomorrow!’
- ‘Succession Planning & Exit Strategies…preparing your business and yourself for the most important financial transaction of your life!’
Most clients have me deliver 2 or more sessions, or one extended ‘Super Session’ at their event, which makes me very cost-effective in both speaking fee and travel cost, as I take the place of 2 speakers.
Attendee comment from my most recent Conference session, “Best, most insightful, most ‘real’ management speaker we’ve had in 30 years! Donald’s complete set of free Management Implementation Tools is a bonus!”
Now, to this week’s important topic:
The many faces of training…and a bonus idea you’ve likely not thought of:
There’s much talk in business today about the importance of initial and on-going training, coaching and employee development…and so there should be. You can’t grow your business without growing your people.
To truly embrace a program of ongoing employee education and development, keep in mind that there are many different kinds of training. Below is a partial list. On a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being excellent, how are you doing at each of these…and which of these 11 types of training need to be improved in your business in 2023?
- ‘Who we are’ training. Learning our history, culture, values, standards, vision, achievements and commitments This is most important for effectively on-boarding new employees…but should be reinforced on a regular basis.
- ‘How we do business’ training. Learning our systems, processes, terms, customer policies and internal policies.
- ‘Product knowledge’ training. Learning the features and benefits of what we sell and our total compelling value proposition. This would typically be for those in sales and marketing…but all employees should have an understanding of this. It’s part of their being proud of what we do and their role in it.
- ‘Skills and knowledge’ training. How to do their current job more effectively and more safely…and why their job is important to the rest of the Team, to the customer and to the bottom line.
- ‘Learning new stuff’ training. Learning new technologies, machinery, processes, systems or policies, as they’re introduced.
- ‘Growth & development’ training and coaching. This occurs in two time frames:
- Preparing employees ahead of time for subsequent promotion or increased responsibility. This would include training in managing people, projects, processes and budgets.
- Training and coaching employees after a promotion or addition of responsibility. No one should ever be promoted or transferred to a different responsibility without a specific training / coaching package. Otherwise, we’re just setting them up to fail.
- Health & Safety’ and ‘Emotionally Safe Workplace’ training. If a business is not a physically and emotionally healthy and safe place to be, nothing else matters. Everyone on our team needs to be aware of, knowledgeable about and constantly reminded of smart health & safety policies and practices and our commitment to an emotionally safe workplace. And, they need to be encouraged to report any physically or emotionally unsafe practices or behaviour.
- ‘Attitude adjustment’ training. This is generally for employees who are exhibiting some kind of inappropriate or toxic behaviour. Topics could include diversity & inclusion, bullying, gender respect, anger management or the importance of our standards of performance, appearance and behavior.
- Ongoing communication re, ‘How we’re doing and where we’re going as a business …and why their particular job is important’. This is one of the most important aspects of employee engagement.
- Training to do another job (cross-training) to create a more flexible and efficient workforce, or because their current job will soon become redundant.
- Daily ongoing informal coaching on how to do any aspect of their job more effectively or more safely in a way that instructs, grows, encourages and engages employees to be more effective and to prepare for more or different responsibility.
Bonus note: There’s one more type of ‘staff training’ that nobody talks about. That’s the one where you give your staff the opportunity to ‘train’ top management about what’s really going on in the company, from their perspective.
This can be done by asking individual employees at all levels for their honest insight as to:
- What do we not do as well as we should? What’s not working so well in the business …and what they suggest we could do to fix it?
- What frustrates them or prevents them from getting their job done effectively…and what they suggest we could do to fix it?
- What frustrates or alienates our customers…and what they think we could do to fix it?
- What can we do to help make you more excited to come to work each day?
A second approach to giving your staff (especially front-line staff) an opportunity to ‘train’ top management about what’s really going on in the company, from their perspective, is to give them an opportunity to put together and deliver a presentation on what they believe could be improved in the areas of the customer experience, employee safety, staff engagement, efficiency, communication, policies and processes, facilities and working conditions.
Select a few of your top front-line and front-line supervisory people and give them time to put together a one-hour Session in which they will give you the wisdom of ‘their truth’ about what’s really going on. Do you have guts to give this one a try? You’ll be amazed at what you learn and what needs fixing.
So, there you have it. ‘The 11 faces of training’ and a gutsy bonus suggestion. How will you use these insights to improve your understanding of and commitment to training, learning and people development in your business…and when will you start?
That’s it for this week…
Stay safe…live brilliantly!