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Ursula's Training Challenge
Ursula manages a small products company in Texas. She has been blessed with a stable workforce and very little turnover. The median age of sixty four employees is fifty one years old. She is starting to feel the attrition as more and more employees notify her of their pending retirement. Additionally, the new applicants are younger and do not seem to bring the same amount of knowledge to the workplace.

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Surviving the Talent Eodus

Early 2011

The Learning Spotlight

John Grubbs Ball

The Secret to Business Happiness

By John Grubbs

A recent study revealed that the key to human happiness is the ability to live in the moment and place less emphasis on both the future and the past.  This unique tendency of the human animal and our obsessive preoccupation with the past and the future are significant burdens that limit our happiness during life.  The study indicates that both our stress over past events and worry about the future have a negative impact on our current happiness.  Furthermore, the ability to live in the current moment and search for the contentment of the present is a critical key to deliberate joy and happiness.

In business, these extremes are much more amplified.  Our need to learn from historical trends or undesirable events has made managers become more preoccupied with blame and perspective.  We have difficulty confronting the sometimes brutal truth for our organizations.  Communication has become more filtered and unfiltered honesty is very rare.  Accountability is defined improperly and trust is scarceamong employees and organizational leaders.

Additionally, the over speculation about the future can be equally as demoralizing for the team.  The emotional strain created by the economic fluctuations can kill morale and impact current productivity significantly.  The corporate fear of recession becomes lost productivity on the front lines.  Wasted organizational energy over possibilities that may or may not occur is the “boat anchor” toproductivity and profitability.

The answer, though simple in concept, is more challenging in application.  Emphasis on employee morale to derive enhanced productivity is not revolutionary as a concept. Yet, most companies actually create an environment and in some cases reward managers for activities that limit individual productivity greatly.  Simply put, most organizations do not consider the collection of individual morale as the cumulativeoutput for the organization.  Many corporate policies have a very significant and detrimental impact on the collective happiness of the team.  The most demoralizing of all policies are the blanket and zero-tolerance policies designed to punish everyone for the negative actions of the few.  The fear of corporate litigation (future) coupled with precedent actions (past) lead to an unhappy workforce and workplace.

Again, too many companies focus on the output rather than creating an environment that promotes output.  Modern managers are not taught to nurture an environment that is fertile for better productivity.  These supervisors are taught to emphasize results.  This misguided emphasis rewards the lucky and can severely punish the diligent on the team.

Teaching corporate managers to emphasize the moment without neglecting the future or the business plan is analogous to focusing on today’s game “first” as the path to winning the season.  Winning at business is about performance in the present moment.  Neglecting the now in order to win later simply has no logical basis.  The old cliché still rings true that a happy employee is a productive employee, yet so many businesses fail to get the fact that on the path to success, there are no shortcuts or quick fixes.  Your team’s happiness holds the key to the success of your business.


Important Training Disclaimer

Warning:  Employees who experience our training may no longer tolerate typical, boring training that yields little more than an expense for your company and time away from the job for the employee.  Attendees in our courses will expect training to be fun, dynamic and above all useful on the job.  Using GCI "When Training Matters" for your training could cause your team to demand more than your average learning experience.