Sunday, January 26, 2014

Overqualified, unfit, semi-skilled…

Do we have a real talent crunch in India as projected by different professionals and consultants? Or do we have the crunch of RIGHT talent? Or is it artificial scarcity of talent? Anybody coming out from the school needs training, how our skill development programmes are? There are lot of questions and we need to address those with right mindset.

There are lot of hiring mistakes which we do tenaciously. I have seen, hiring manager hiring CA for account keeping jobs, diploma for  doing workmen job and engineers just for supervisor jobs. 
Do really we need overqualified candidates for filling moderate jobs? If yes how you address their aspirations? And if you have highly aspirants people do you have opportunities for all?

I think we have upgraded the qualification for the positions. Earlier there would be only one CA in team, today there are almost all CAs in account function doing the job of accountants. There are companies who have hired diplomas for doing workmen jobs, MBAs just for salesman job. Candidate are highly qualified but not employable, however their expectations have been increased a lot. This is resulting high employee attrition, dissatisfaction.

This is a real time to correct this and have a moderate expectations from candidates. If you hiring MBA, just expect that he is just qualified, but ask the question, is he employable for the job?  Simple graduate may be smart than the MBA graduate. Anyways you have to spend lot of time to develop both.

I have challenged my functional managers on hiring overqualified candidates. Earlier we used to hire Engineering or MBA graduates for SCM who were doing customer support and commercial jobs. The attrition was high, employees were not happy. They were just speaking with customers, planning deliveries, scheduling production and arranging documentation. Can’t graduate employee perform this job? Yes. We changed the hiring strategy and today this group is most engaged and doing good job.

We should not blame the market, colleges. We have to find out the mid-way and educate, sometime challenge hiring managers with right perspective. 

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Six long lasting ways to manage your talent and improve their engagement.

Talent Management and employee engagement is widely discussed and unresolved mystery yet. It started long back with war of talent and still today issues are same and relevant with changing scenario.  When you do the employee engagement survey, you will find the career development is lowest score in any organization. Can it be addressed with some innovative but small initiatives? How? Let’s check some effective ways to address it.

Analyze your employee demography with their experience with your company, their age and their inclinations to their career. New person may have different priorities & old employee may have different priorities. Connect with them and try to understand their issues, concerns. Importantly don’t be just soundboard. Take it at appropriate forum.

Equally focus on new employees. First few days are important days for new employees where he decides about his stay in the organization. New employee should not be left unattended. Make sound orientation and induction plan.

Job Enrichment: Employee want to take more responsibilities. They want growth. You can club two job together, enhance the job, increase the span of control and then increase his grade or upgrade title. Off course, you also should complement this with increase in salary.

Job Rotation: Design sound job rotation policy and make it compulsory for all functions. You can develop your employee here on the job and also prepare them to take more responsibilities.

Title change: Most of the times, after 2-3 years employees come to me and asks when their title would change. Still in India (and in Asian countries), title is considered to represent the status in society, among friend and peers. Design the innovative titles which will address the psychological need of employees.

Project assignments: Find out some innovative projects where employees would add some value to the business. Depute them on cross functional projects. Project assignments are the best way to develop your employees.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Wonderful glasses

There are always surprises in life. Sometimes even the person who is doing something is totally unaware about his good deeds. Unintentionally people do so many good for others. I remember the story told by my teacher in the school.  Teacher’s father  was a  carpenter and volunteer at Vanvashi Ashram (wing of RSS which involves in social work at tribal area) at the district place.   

On one particular day, he was building some crates for some material which was supposed to be supplied to the  orphanage  school run by the Vanvashi Ashram at interior tribal area known as Melghat in Maharashtra. After the hectic day, when he was on the way at home,  he  reached into his shirt pocket to find his Spectacle  glasses, but they were gone.  When he mentally replayed his earlier actions, he realized what happened; the glasses had slipped out of his pocket unnoticed and fallen into one of the crates, which he had nailed shut.  His brand new glasses were heading for Melghat!

The Great Depression was at its height and father had six children.  He had spent 400 bucks for those glasses that very morning.  He was upset by the thought of having to buy another pair.  "It's not fair," he told God as he drove home in frustration.  "I've been very faithful in giving of my time and money to your work, and now this."

Several months later, the Incharge  of the orphanage school was on holiday in the City.  He wanted to visit Vanvasshi centers that supported him in Melghat, so he came to speak one Sunday at the center where teachers’ father's was volunteering.  The Incharge began by thanking the people for their faithfulness in supporting the school.  "But most of all," he said, "I must thank you for the glasses you sent last year.  You see, I lost my glasses. I am staying in such interior area where it is difficult to get material for day to day chore during monsoon, so imagine how can I get glasses. I was desperate.  Even if I had the money, there was simply no way of replacing those glasses. Along with not being able to see well, I experienced headaches every day, so my colleagues, lovely students  and I were much in prayer about this.  Then your crates arrived. When my staff removed the covers, they found a pair of glasses lying on top.”

The Incharge paused long enough to let his words sink in.  Then, still gripped with the wonder of it all, he continued: "Folks, when I tried on the glasses, it was as though they had been custom-made just for me!  I want to thank you for being a part of that."

The people listened, happy for the miraculous glasses. But the Incharge surely must have confused their Center with another, they thought.  There were no glasses on their list of items to be sent at Melghat.

But sitting quietly in the back, with tears streaming down his face, an ordinary carpenter realized the Master Carpenter had used him in an extraordinary way.

Sunday, January 05, 2014

Uncommon in common man….

In one movie, actor Shaharukh Khan says, “don’t underestimate the power of common man.” However in reality common man was always underestimated till common man find extraordinary in him. One extra-ordinary common man come forward and made other common people joined him uncommon by throwing the ruling party out from the power. Yes, I am speaking about, the down to earth leader, Mr. Arvind Kejriwal.

The story of Mr. Arvind Kejriwal is really inspiring. His story is not different from the action and thrilling movie story.  Few years back Anil Kapoor starrer movie “Nayak” was a big hit. Mr. Kejriwal’s story is similar to the “Nayak”. People had lost the trust on political parties and they were hopeless from corrupt and bullied political parties till Mr. Kejriwal gave them hope & trust.
Ruling party and opposition party were so arrogant that time, that they were making the fun of Mr. Kejariwal. His way of working is also criticized by them, but common man have the trust on him and there is huge flow  of people joining him. People are leaving their job and joining him. Aaam Adami Party (AAP) is growing by every day. This is an example how common man can make the difference.

But the question is how common man becomes uncommon. What are their unique characteristics which makes them uncommon? Everybody knows that Mr. Kejriwal is IIT graduate and left is high earning job from IRS. What makes him to leave the job? And what makes Mr. Kejriwal successful.

Vision and systematic goals to reach at Vision: Mr. Kejriwal has a clear vision, “Corruption free India”. He formed the NGO, “India Against Corruption”. However he had clear goals in his mind. He knew that for reaching to the vision, he need to work on short term goals and he worked. Initially he worked on “Right of Information Act.” He was also awarded “Ramon Magsaysay  awards for his work in Right of Information. From the amount he received as an award, he formed the NGO, India Against Corruptions.

Planning & Connect: Anna Hazare is a mentor of Mr. Kejriwal. He persuaded Anna for going on hunger strike. What we witnessed in 2012 was the huge success at Ramlila Maidan. Mr. Kejriwal was the brain behind every move at that time and we know how Congress government came on knees. Kejriwal and his team did the huge planning and connected with the people through multiple media. Anna and Kejriwal actually were speaking the language of common man. Even during recent Delhi elections, he was on ground and was speaking the language of common man. People elected him because they found that Mr, Kejriwal have something for them.

Use of technology: He used the technology very wisely. Web, mobile, social networking site, everything available is used effectively. He marketed his brand very well.   

Democratic way of working:  When he had to take the decision to form the government, he went back to the people. His style is truly democratic. Whenever possible he went to the people, get consensus and he delivered.           

Mr. Kejarwal is a wise man. Congress initially thought that AAP will refuse their support and hence they extended their support to save their skin. But Mr. Kejriwal form the government. Now Congress can’t withdraw the support. If they do so, Congress will lose their (remaining) credibility.

I personally feel that clear vision, speaking common man language, connect, his democratic style and branding made him successful.   

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