Aja King, Ed.D, LPCC
September 10th, 2017
As I scrambled for scratch paper, my father was blurting out themes to help me shape my thoughts on building value within employees. My father’s strategic planning helped me formulate some thoughts. How do you build value within employees? I find that organizations have vague, and meaningless mission statements. While visions within organizations are necessary, they are fruitless when circulating through companies. Therefore, through the development of value within employees, the mission and vision statement become living creeds, and not just words.
The steps to building the value within employees includes: acknowledgement, development, and modeling.
First, every employee has a set of skills that must first be acknowledged. I believe some employees are at the right job, but in the wrong positions. While job descriptions, I believe that they keep us within a box. It is the responsibility of the employer to build relationships with their employees, so they can recognize and acknowledge their skills. Once you are able to understand their passion, and their strong suites, placing that individual where they will thrive is important. I can recall working within a mental health agency, and seeing patients hour-after-hour. This daunting work created burnout. When I talked with my supervisor about engaging in more public speaking activities, I was met with a smile, but no plan. I ultimately left the organization, and pursued public speaking contracts. Employers will find that they will lose great employees if they are not willing to help them exercise their skills sets, and strengths. This leads to the second point of development.
Second, the development of skills is essential to any job. As a career coach, I have found that many employers hire good candidates, but do not help them develop the necessary skill to fit the position. Employers believe that if a candidate has several years of experience then they are prepared to handle the job. It has been my experience that new hires need coaching, and some form of program shadowing to fully understand the values, mission, and vision of the organization. Too many times have I seen new hires fall into the negative patterns of disgruntled employees. Development allows the employee to take their skills, and form them into the healthy portions of the organizational culture. The Final and third point is that skill development is great, but exemplifying these principles are key.
Third, organizations may talk a great talk, but the ability to build value comes by modeling. Employers and employees must model the behavior they want to experience. I think of my part-time private group practice, Empower Therapeutic Services, which is operated by Cedric Weatherspoon. The framework within Empower is treating every patient with a Multi-Cultured, Person-Centered Approach. Basically, treating every person who enters Empower with respect, integrity, and respect. While those are just word, the actions of: meeting and greeting, making the center child friendly, and advocating for the client are the examples that are set by Cedric. Watching Cedric creates the standard within the organization, and motivates others to follow for the advancement of our clients and the organization. The altruistic behavior is not forced, or prompted because Empower creates the aura of respect.
Organizations want to find new hire prospects, but sometimes their best assets are within the company. Value within employees is not just a word, but an action. To increase value organizations must acknowledge the skill set, develop talents, and lead by example. Without these steps, burnout, turnover, and a depression in job market will increase. Harvey Firestone quoted, “the growth and development of people is the highest calling of leadership.” Move past words, and lead with action to build the value in organizations, and watch the difference.