How to win the match when salary increases no longer do the job
Globalisation is rapidly changing our world. Skills shortages are increasing and change in the workplace continues to exhilarate, leaving employees grasping to keep up with technology, Industry developments and market extremities. Consequently, the biggest challenge faced by employers today, comes back to workforce shortages. In developing countries there has been a quick fix for this, if not an entirely practical one, which has meant involved employers throwing money at the problem by increasing salaries. Governments have taken a back step with the view that it is better to let market forces decide how to develop and manage workforce outcomes and then build a policy around those the fallout.
Cascading down from that, candidates have come to realise that it’s in their interest to continue to train themselves in order to constantly improve their position and earn more money. Whether it be a blue collar labourer who needs on the shop floor training, or a university graduate who has been in the workforce at entry level and wishes to progress into middle management, or a seasoned, senior level leader who realises he or she needs to update and up-skill themselves in order to keep up with developments in their industry.In tandem with this, salary pressure continues mount. In developing countries like Thailand, employees are known to job hop in order to improve their pay packet. In countries like Vietnam a well-educated workforce is returning to their home country where their government is making traction in terms of building capability and developing its industries.
As work conditions, salaries and consumer wealth increase even at blue-collar level, there is growing need, not just to improve salary but to offer job satisfaction. If industries and businesses are going to continue to attract the best staff, they need to have an employee loyalty program that goes well beyond salary.There are some companies that do this extremely well. On the blue collar level, companies offer ongoing training. This is training that is formally recognised, according to industry standards and which is offered to all staff. It ranges from blue-collar level to middle management and onwards. Employees have the opportunity to start with the business at ground level, to gain on the job skills and then expanded career into middle management and even to university with the support of the Company. This builds long term loyalty where it is not just about how much you earn today but a long-term partnership with your employer that’s will give you a return over several years of mutual investment.There are creative ways of offering staff the opportunity to improve themselves, increase their skills and market potential, whilst giving them a satisfying career. Some companies offer traineeships that fast track hi-potentials. This includes a solid program that gives them the exposure to various aspects of the business. Other companies, particularly in areas where there are major skill shortages, take advantage of less represented populations such as women and the elderly by offering flexible hours and work-life balance initiatives that open up opportunities to a larger workforce.
Overall, however, the biggest most important single factor that decides on whether an employee will stay in a company comes down to management. Employees often join businesses because of the person they will report to and it is also, as proven in many surveys, one of the biggest reasons why they will leave your business.And yet, management training is one of the most under resourced areas. However, no matter how good a salary, how luxurious an office environment research has shown that employees walk if they do not feel confident in their management.There is a lot to be learned by using the analogy of sport. No matter how good a team, no matter how talented, gifted or dedicated each individual player, or even all the players collectively in, for example, a soccer team, their success is hinged on the leadership skills of their coach. I know I may get myself into trouble for saying this, I know soccer players earn enormous amounts of money. They are extremely successful as measured by the enormous amount of money they earn. It may be that a dream team is put together but unless they are led by a coach who can win their hearts and minds, unify their purpose and still understanding each individual’s needs, they are lost or an at best they struggle. Of course there are many intangibles. We are talking about people here and so there will always be subjective factors at play that go with the indefinable concept of “personality” and “free will”. However, with proper training, support from human resources and guidance communicated from the top level of management, there are defined was to enhance management skills.The benefits of having excellent management in your business are clear. It’s one of the easiest and most effective ways to achieve success. However, it’s not an easy process to initiate.
The first step towards improving skills is to understand shortcomings in people management within the business. Often this requires objectivity. An assessment can be difficult if leadership is too close to the problems and too enmeshed to see the real issues.
This is why initially it is advisable to engage the services of an outsider. A professional who understands the industry and has the insights to objectively, not just understand but communicate what could be difficult and complex issues in a non-confronting and solution-driven manner.
Trust is of course the biggest consideration. At Logistics Executive we specialise in working with our clients to achieve their success coming from many levels. Our business started on working with clients on the recruitment front to overcome the talent shortages but which, due to the complexities mentioned above, has led to our support for clients in different areas such as training, professional development, mentoring and leadership and business consulting as we have intimately come to understand the real issues in attracting talent. Having many years across the logistics and supply chain industry globally, working with multinationals and partnering over the years with business leaders we intimately understand how important it is to get it right.We work closely with our clients and we hearing from them in an informal setting offering advice, as and when needed. It is about partnership.
Just like the recent game between Manchester City and Manchester United, we understand that a lot of the outcome hinges the coaches. It’s a fascinating game that we continue to enjoy, even though it can be quite difficult at times. In this marketplace it is a game that continues to increase the stakes terms due to the rapid state of progress. That is why we look forward to hearing from you, should you wish to bend our ear, whether you have a challenge or are looking for a fresh pair of eyes, we offer an objective and supportive outlook to help you win.