“I’m amused when other agencies try to hire my people away. They’d have to ‘hire’ the whole environment. For a flower to blossom, you need the right soil as well as the right seed” William Bernback
William Bernback really hit the nail on the head with this quote. If we, as leaders, have created the proper environment within our organizations, we should not be concerned about losing our best employees to the competition because no one will want to leave. We will have a culture that attracts and retains employees and few recruitment agencies will stand a chance in luring our staff away .
The million dollar question is, what does this “miracle” environment or culture look like? What sort of “soil” do we need to have to promote the growth of our employees and our business?
Recently I read The Alliance: Managing Talent in the Networked Age. Although I think the authors took a few too many chapters to explain their thoughts, I really did like the concept they titled “Tours of Duty.” A Tour of Duty is simply a formal or informal arrangement between an employee and employer. This arrangement defines the parameters of a work assignment that the employee will take on that will both develop their career and advance the company at the same time.
This is not a new concept by any means. It has existed in the military world for eons and I was introduced to it when I started in business back in the early 90’s. Essentially, it is an assignment with a defined term, expected personal development outcomes, and expected business outcomes. The employee is motivated to successfully execute the Tour of Duty so they can be promoted or get moved to a choice assignment, etc. (as defined by the agreement with their employer).. The business benefits because the employee is completely engaged in the process and is typically adding significant value to the business.
The authors of The Alliance specify three types of Tours of Duty
Last week I wrote about the importance of setting up your Advisors Network and I listed a number of my Advisors Council members that have really helped me over my career. This weeks post will list some of the books or references from these icons that I have leveraged over the years. In many cases I have multiple books from each of these authors but I will limit the list to the one source from that individual that made the biggest difference in my professional development.
We have all heard a lot about networking over the years and how it is important for each of us to get out into the marketplace and build our network. Although I agree that building this personal network is important, it is what you do with the network you create that will determine your future success.
The focus of this post is not on leveraging your network for business or sales but rather working with your network to set up what I call an Advisors Network. No one knows everything that is needed to be successful in life and business in every circumstance. We all need help in many areas over the course of our lifetime. This is where the Advisors Network comes in. It allows you to leverage the expertise of many people when you need this specific expertise. Each of these people brings something to the table that you may not have as a strength or as a skill.
In my last few posts I have written about the concept of Motivation 3.0 and explained how it is the secret to an engaged workforce. I have defined two of the three components of Motivation 3.0; Autonomy and Mastery. Today, I will define the final component, Purpose.
Purpose can be defined as a cause that is greater than a single individual. It is the “reason for being” . . . the French call it “Raison d’être” or reason for existence. This is much greater than a simple goal or objective. This is something that a person will stake their entire existence on. The people that understand their purpose and are aligned in the pursuit of that purpose are focused and are not easily discouraged or knocked off track.