Retain Retrain or Release… Part 2

Do you know what talent you need?Businesses do not start in well organized and structured entities with HR OD departments and work specialization in place. They are far more organic and messy than that. They start of with an inspiration of a single person or a small group and if they are healthy and have a healthy environment they grow. The growth begets more growth and the small entity grows. You rarely hear about entrepreneurial start ups that fail in the popular media. Why they failed. They are no longer there to talk to. Yet most entrepreneurs can recount stories of their failures as painful badges of honor. They learned from them and moved on to the next thing. When we discover them they are on the “successful” thing. So they start out as this messy chaotic disorganized melee of activity. It goes right and they start to grow. They overcome the issues of cash flow and grow further. They land major clients and grow further. At some point the entity outgrows the mental and physical capacity of the entrepreneur and they begin to bring on people. Who do they hire? They hire to fill an immediate need of their fledgling business that they no longer have time to do themselves. And so the cycle continues with the addition of more people as the business grows. “Start Ups focus on survival not systems and processes”
The point is their focus is on survival and growth not on systems and processes. Certainly they do not focus on “how can I implement a personnel retention and development plan?” The company continues to grow and inevitably in come the professional managers, the specialists. It is somewhere around here that the enterprise begins to develop its own sense of consciousness. It may still have many characteristics of its entrepreneurial leader but it begins to see that it needs to tighten processes get more professional and start to pay close attention to things like laws and accounting standards etc. It also begins to realize that it needs to start paying attention to its people. The adrenaline of the life or death start up phase is becoming more of a memory than a reality so motivational tactics change. Simply paying employees more money is no guarantee of desired performance. This is where leadership and management begin to take center stage. I have not come across many organizations who do this stuff formally, typically it is again a process of stumbling around in the dark making mistakes until you find the light switch. Yet it does not have to be that way.Needs Analysis

An organization should to conduct a needs analysis. A simple tool that allows them to identify the skills and attributes they must have to both be successful and position themselves for future growth. This does not have to be complicated. It can be as simple as looking at your organizational mission and discovering all the competencies you need to bring it to life. There are simple brainstorming tools that when well facilitated will provide a clear picture of what is required. A needs analysis can also be more complicated and hence more complete by assessing different dimensions of needs. A thorough analysis takes into consideration the needs of all stakeholders and seeks to spell out in significant detail what competencies are required.

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One comment on “Retain Retrain or Release… Part 2
  1. Wow..from the time I read about the headline, I know this is something I must read. From the first post I read, I will totally agree about the principle on retain, retrain or release.

    Of course companies wants to hire the best employees and sometimes even though they are the best, still the work performance gets low. This was a very eye opening article for me.

    I guess that’s the process I should focus on to lessen my problems with my employees.


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