Tag Archive: engagement and retention

  1. The many ways prospective employers blow it!


    I’ve just read an article entitled ‘The five ways job applicants blow it!’…  Great stuff and all points that prospective employees should take into account.  It’s also important for employers to be aware of the ways they can blow it too. I have called this article ‘The many ways prospective employers blow it!’ because I am convinced there are more than 5.  So here goes….

    The competition for top talent is fierce – keeping top talent and making sure engagement levels are high is a key factor to success and bottom line impact. So what can employers do to make sure they attract and retain the top talent – or rather, what should they not do?  Here are some major booboos!

    • Failing to recognize that talent acquisition is a two way process. Too many organisations approach talent acquisition as if it is a privilege to work for them.  Whilst there may be some anomalies in the job market many organisations find it difficult to attract talent – this can be to senior positions as well as to their apprenticeship schemes.
    • Making the job out to be something it’s not in the advert! We often hear of people leaving a role fairly quickly because the advertisement has asked for something the role can’t deliver.  A classic example is ‘creativity and innovation’ when every decision has to be referred to the host company and takes months to be acted upon.  Entrepreneurship is another – let’s be honest true entrepreneurs do not work for large organisations.  What the role probably requires is the ability to take initiative, to work autonomously if necessary and maybe a level of optimism about the future.
    • Not saying ‘thanks but no thanks’ to unsuccessful applicants of the first sift. Such a simple step that can do wonders for the company brand.
    • Interviewing on the basis of eligibility factors alone – experience and qualifications are of course an essential part of the criteria. They definitely determine whether a person is capable of performing the role but do they measure their suitability for the role?  By measuring suitability factors accuracy can increase from 40-45% to nearer 90-95%
    • Resorting to subjectivity at the interview stage. Eligibility factors are easy to measure and check.  Interviews are often conducted on a subjective scoring system with the results being calculated and discussions taking place following the interview.  Behavioural questioning can give some indication of a person’s willingness and ability to perform in a variety of scenarios but it can’t measure working preferences which are the real indicators of success.
    • Trying to fit to role by personality testing. Personality testing has little to do with job success.
    • Failing to fit with manager/leader. All too often employers fail to match their new recruits to the style of the manager causing friction and mismanagement and often resulting in the newly found talent moving on to pastures new.
    • Failing to check engagement and retention factors. What actually motivates new talent is not always the same.  It is important to find out what the engagement factors are and be honest if the organisation cannot satisfy them.  What are the employees expectations in relation to development, appreciation, remuneration, communication, authority, social, personal needs and work life balance?
    • Failing to satisfy the GRT of expectations. According to Kevin Kruse the best talent is generally looking for 3 things – growth, recognition of input and ideas and trust – trust in them and the ability to trust in the organization.

    These are just a few of the blunders organisations can make in the pursuit of talent. To find out more about what you CAN do to acquire, develop and retain talent, contact us here or give us a call on 0800 689 3761

  2. Why do your people decide to stay or leave?


    In this day and age of virtually full employment it can be difficult to recruit and retain your best talent.  Recruitment alone is a costly process.

    So what makes someone come to your organisation in the first place and what makes them stay?  There is a general assumption that if we pay people enough they will want to stay but is this right and how will you know?

    Using Harrison Assessments we can measure 8 factors which contribute to retention and engagement.  We do this objectively not subjectively using an on-line SmartQuestionnaire™

    .  These factors include –

    • Development Expectations
    • Remuneration Expectations
    • Authority Expectations
    • Social Expectations
    • Appreciation Expectations
    • Communication expectations
    • Personal Expectations
    • Work Life Balance Expectations

    The resulting report is the result of 30 years of research by Dr Dan Harrison into what makes people successful at work.

    For further information on Harrison’s Engagement and Retention solution please click on the image below:

    Just call 07768 922244 or email [email protected] to arrange.

  3. How re-aligning culture can put you at the front of the queue in 2018


    As we begin 2018 and the uncertainty over Brexit continues companies and organisations will be positioning themselves to be at the front of the queue in markets new and/or old.   The productivity equation is a simple one –

    Happy, talented people create great working environments where people want to be productive!

    Achieve this and you –

    • Promote a productive culture
    • Reduce absenteeism
    • Reduce employee attrition rates
    • Promote innovation and creativity

    So what are the factors that make people want to work for your organisation?  Here are 8 to start with –

    They may have expectations for –

    • Development and self-improvement, challenges
    • Appreciation and Recognition for work achieved
    • Remuneration – may not be top of the pole
    • Communication style
    • Authority – autonomy, initiative, leadership
    • Personal expectations – being informed, wants help
    • Social – outgoing people often like to mix work with pleasure (or not)
    • Work life balance – flexible working time, stress management

    If people have wants and desires in these areas and you are not providing them then they are unlikely to be fulfilled in the role and will cost you money when they leave, often after only a few short months.  So what’s the answer – easy – measure them! You can do this quickly and effectively for individuals, groups and/or organisations through one simple objective on line questionnaire.

    OK, so now you have measured your cultural expectations – what if they don’t fit your productivity needs?  What if people aren’t happy, have no authority expectations or development expectations that are crucial to your culture? So now we look to the future to implement the changes necessary.  First we need to know what they are.

    Most organisations have a set of values which they display on websites and on walls around the organisation.  In my experience when I ask people what they mean or even what they are, despite being displayed on the wall, they have little or no idea how to interpret them into behaviours.  This is because they are written in vague language that is open to interpretation. Let me show you what I mean by the use of a simple model of alignment –

    Robert Dilts’ Alignment Model based on the work of Gregory Bateson

    The above Alignment Model is particularly useful when creating a change. Each level of the model impacts on the levels below it. In order to create change you would need to focus on each level and ensure each is in place in order to impact any lasting change on the levels below, which will then result in alignment.

    Most organisations have a fairly clear idea of their purpose and the roles that people play within that.  They also have some words to represent the values of the organisation and that’s where it stops.  Those values never get translated into behaviours and therefore people are unsure of how to act them out.  So what’s the answer?  Again it’s simple – decide which behaviours demonstrate each value and measure them! You can use the same answer sets as for the Engagement and Retention survey – the data will just be arranged differently to align with the values.  You then have the information you need to –

    • Add to existing recruitment processes or  create new ones using Harrison Assessments
    • Design development programmes based on real data
    • Measure your cultural expectations annually quickly, cost effectively and accurately

    If you would like to know about how to accurately assess Engagement and Retention factors and align cultural values please call Pat on 07768 922244 or email [email protected].

    Find out more about the Alignment Model in ‘Brilliant NLP’, co-authored by Pat Hutchinson and David Molden available here

  4. The Missing Key!



    Have you got the right sales people in place and is your reward scheme set up properly?

    A colleague of mine bought a new car through a well-known and, to all intents and purposes, reputable dealership in Liverpool.  On completing the deal the sales person agreed to supply the missing spare key saying that it would take about a week…  6 weeks and endless calls later, my colleague still hasn’t received the key.  Excuses have ranged from ‘getting caught up in a heavy sales period’ to the ‘key supplier being on holiday’!

    So imagine her surprise when she received a call from the sales person asking her why she hadn’t completed the customer feedback form because it affected his ‘scores’.

    My colleague has vowed never to buy a car from this dealer again and has told just about everyone she meets what terrible service she has received and all because of a key!

    So what’s going on here? 

    Two things strike me.  Firstly we have a sales person who is more interested in his own personal success represented by the scoring system than he is in fulfilling his promises to the customer.  He seems to think that people will give him good marks regardless of poor service.  Admittedly his scores may reflect his pay packet at the end of the month but surely points have to be earned?

    Selecting sales people who are interested in customer satisfaction first and their own scores afterwards will satisfy both needs.  Note to management – make sure your talent acquisition strategy includes something like Harrison Assessments to engage sales people with an approach that will result in customer satisfaction, repeat sales and ultimately high scores – win/win for all!

    Secondly, is your reward system for sales people set up correctly?  Is it rewarding successful, productive behaviour with the types of rewards the sales people want?  The only way to find out is to ask them with an objective (not subjective) retention and engagement survey.  Here again Harrison Assessments can help with a highly cost effective, easy to complete, objective survey measuring 8 employee engagement factors, ensuring your reward system is aligned not only to the business’ expectations, but also to your employees expectations.

    If you would like to know more about how we can help you, select, engage and retain your sales people do get in touch:

    [email protected]  – 07768 922244.

  5. Employee remuneration expectations – frequency or value?


    Employee Remuneration Expectations – managing for engagement

    In this article on employee expectations we look at ‘remuneration expectations’ and how they impact employee engagement.

    We all want to be paid a fair wage for a fair day’s work and remuneration is certainly near the top of employee expectations. It is not, however, the primary motivator for a good many of us and vies for position with the quality of the workplace environment, being appreciated and having a competent, responsive manager.


    The organisational view

    Most employees understand that a company has different pay grades and that they cannot expect to earn more than someone else who does the same job. Having said that, the increasing problem of those being paid below the living wage can create tensions for many companies.

    If you want to earn a higher salary, the excepted way of doing it is to take on more responsibility and possibly undertake further training.

    For those who want higher pay, this can often be the sticking point, particularly if they are not self-motivated enough to develop their own careers.

    The individual’s remuneration expectations

    Asking the right questions, and analysing each individual employee’s real engagement factors ensures managers and the wider organisation provide an environment that retains their best talent.

    individual remuneration expecttions

    Remuneration Expectations

    Employee remuneration expectations can vary depending on the amount of pressure they are under, the type of work they have to do and the environment they work in. Even individuals in a particular office might have different views about whether they are paid enough or not.

    Wants High Pay

    • The desire to earn greater remuneration
    • A competitive and career minded individual will more likely see their worth in the amount that they are paid, or have the potential of earning, compared to someone who just wants to come in and get their allotted work done.
    • Wanting higher pay can be a signifier of personal ambition which could mean that a top performing team member may look elsewhere if they don’t achieve what they hope for. It can also be a pipe dream where an individual wants more pay but is not prepared to get the work and study done to reach their target.

    Wants Quick Pay Increases

    • The desire to have an employer who offers relatively frequent pay increases
    • Linked to the desire for higher pay, is the need for them to be delivered quickly. Most businesses have a yearly incremental increase in salary but that might not be enough for some employees. This could be a sign that they are moving quickly up the ladder or it could be that their ambitions are outstripping their actual ability.
    • Impatience can be a virtue but it can also signify that an employee is more likely to look round at other companies rather than stay put and contribute to the development of an organisation.


    • The drive to achieve including taking initiative, wanting challenge, and being enthusiastic about goals
    • Those who want to develop their own careers necessarily have to be self-motivated. This can be a difficult one to gauge particularly if the employee is deluding themselves about just how much they have in the tank for climbing the corporate ladder.
    • There may well be good signs for self-motivated behaviour such as learning new key skills and being open to challenges and these can mark out an employee as someone who needs to be handled sympathetically and nurtured if they are to stay with the company.

    Does everyone in the group have the same remuneration expectations?

    Finding out what employee’s remuneration expectations are can be highly enlightening; by using Harrison Assessments engagement and retention analytics we can explore them in detail.

    Team Distribution Remuneration Expectations

    What can we interpret for this group?

    • This group considers earning higher pay levels to be only moderately important and thus, it is only moderately important to carefully explain how higher pay can be achieved.
    • This group considers quick pay increases to be unimportant. Consequently, this group is probably not going to be too impatient about achieving higher pay.
    • This group has a strong tendency to be self-motivated independent of consideration about remuneration.

    Using Harrison Assessments Talent Solutions to understand remuneration expectations

    Managers can measure an number of key employee expectations, the intrinsic behaviours that drive individual and group engagement. This helps to understand any differences between an employee as well as looking at the overall group or team’s expectations. These insights facilitate the essential dialogue between employee and manager, fostering a shared responsibility for engagement to build a culture of employee engagement.

    Managers can use the Manage, Develop and Retain report as a guide to getting the best performance out of an individual member of their team, and shows how mis-matched communication and management styles could potentially demotivate a talented employee. Instead the report suggests how best to develop and engage the employee, what type of tasks to delegate and behaviours to watch out for that could impede performance.

    Employee Engagement White Paper

    • This employee engagement white paper will outline why this is the case and what is needed to achieve a greater impact on organisational performance.
    • It includes some key areas relating to engagement in the workplace and a crucial 3-step guide to assist with the application of engagement analytics.
    • Written by Dan Harrison, Ph.D. – Organisational Psychology, developer and CEO of Harrison Assessments, this white paper is a must read for anyone involved in employee engagement.  Request your copy here –