And what are YOU going to do about it? That was a questioned posed by an hourly employee in the plant to the president of the company regarding productivity. Yes, she was very upset over the lack of company performance. Ever had that happen? Ever had an employee (at any level) show real emotion over the lack of company performance?
About six months prior to that encounter, we had designed and implemented our Equishare System™ into this New England business. A system, where every employee shared in the financial performance of the business, every month.
That day I was sitting in the president’s office when a lady came into the doorway. It was obvious she had come from the factory floor. Ron (the President) asked if he could help her. She said, “ the guy next to me has been making junk all morning… the supervisor has walked by twice and hasn’t said a word. He is wrecking my bonus and I want to know what you are going to do about it”! Wow, an employee chewing out the president over lousy performance… that’s novel. The question is why?
The answer – her monthly earnings were significantly impacted by company performance. Beyond that however, the Equishare System™ had been designed in such a way to drive real changes in the way employees think and act. This behavioral change was a product of –
- A real understanding of the key metrics that drive profit
- Measured and communicated frequently
- An operating plan to achieve it
- Timely – monthly – long enough to tie to the financials, short enough to keep people engaged
- Dollar opportunity – enough to affect her standard of living.
The story concludes with this. As it turned out, this employee was a single mom, and $200-300 extra opportunity a month meant the world to her. Nothing was going to stand in her way.
AND, since the system was set up on the factors that truly drive improvement in operating profits – and a fair sharing of the incremental gain, Ron was committed as well. I hate clichés, but that is a win-win.