Recently a manager said to me in passing, ‘You say you create effective employees don’t you?’ I replied, ‘Yes I do’. ‘Well’, he said, ‘I need a few of them. Where can I get them?’ I wish that life was only that easy, that I could create effective employees with a stroke of my wand and a spell out the world of Harry Potter. Unfortunately it isn’t that easy, you need to find and nurture effective employees. But effective and efficient employees are worth their weight in gold.
To explain both concepts simply: ‘Efficiency is doing things right, while effectiveness is doing the right things.’
I would consider that creating effective employees is one of the important deliverables of human resources. Creating effective and efficient employees adds value to the human resource function.
It starts with the search and recruitment of good employees. By this I mean having a clear description of what kind of people you need, what knowledge they require for their position and what competencies are necessary to be successful. Then of course you need to look in the rights direction when you are searching for employees. You will be more successful if you look for certain employees in different ways. Then you have to select employees by using a competence based interview technique. Through using the right recruitment techniques you will hire better employees.
This doesn’t end our quest for effective employees’ it is only the start of it. Next the manager needs to induce and train the employee into the company to ensure that the new employee understands what is expected of him, how the company operates and its culture of the company. Furthermore the employee needs to understand how the teams work in the company, how he fits into his team and what his team expects from him. After the induction and training the new employee needs to be regularly reviewed and helped to meet the company standards. However if after several attempts the new employee fails to meet the company standards it is better to end the employment in the probation period. This is a difficult decision for both manager and employee. Difficult for the employee because he would have lost a job which he hoped would be there for life. It is difficult for the manager because their investment in the new employee is lost.
After a successful start to the employment the company needs to ensure that the employee is regularly trained regarding the requirements of the job and the company. Again any changes in the organisation and position need to be discussed and understood to become effective. The company will have regular reviews with the employee and he will receive constructive feedback on how he is doing. High achievers need to be rewarded and underachievers need to be tackled.
To really create effective employees, the manager needs to engage with the employees. This means to keep talking with the employee and find out how the employee gets on in his job and where he needs support. There needs to be regular communication about what both sides expect from each other what the employee expects from the company and his colleagues and what his colleagues and company expect from him. There needs to be a balance between employee remuneration and the capacity of the company to pay. Any misunderstandings between employee and manager need to be resolved as quickly as possible.
As you can see it is difficult to create effective and efficient employees but the reward of creating a cohort of them is extremely valuable for any company.
Your Human Resources department should be able to deliver the required instruments and outcomes in order for your company to be able to create effective employees. Your HR people should be able to deliver excellent recruitment tools, ways to objectively review people, induce and train staff members, knowledge on how to engage staff members, how to handle company communication, advise managers and employees on how to perform their jobs and how to handle underperformers and find solutions for them.