How Smart Is Your Business?
The Moral of the Jelly Bean
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© Bill Main & Associates
I have said often that the old command control style of management just doesn't work anymore. Giving orders and entrenching yourself is dangerous. Most successful companies (new and old) learn fast and learn well. If you're not learning as fast as your competition, you'll be left in the dust.
What do I mean by learning? Creating a learning workplace involves building the skills, talents, and competencies of every one of your employees...bussers, dishwashers, servers and chefs alike.
We're accustomed to upgrading our computer software, our cars, and our stock portfolio (if we're lucky). So why do we stop upgrading our own professional knowledge and skills?
The goal is to create the time and proper environment for people to learn. Opportunities abound. It's easy and inexpensive to demonstrate to your employees that there is a real industry and career path available to them.
And keep in mind that learning doesn't last as long as it used to. According to the National Research Council, it used to take 7 to 14 years for 50% of a worker's skills to become obsolete. Now it takes only 3 to 5 years! If we want to compete against the best, we'd better get cracking.
The best way to make sure that the hard-learned skills don't go to waste is to make sure that they are put to use an a regular basis. Repetition and reinforcement are key to retention. So is the challenge of teaching skills or knowledge to others. Take five minutes out of your pre-shift meeting for one employee to teach the "class." Assign the task of finding and sharing an interesting article, fact or skill on customer service, food and beverage or the industry in general.
For Trade Secrets Members we've created a ready-to-use exercise, The Moral of the Jelly Bean, to get you started.
I know you'll be surprised at how managing becomes easier when your workplace becomes smarter. You'll reap the rewards of high employee retention rates, great customer satisfaction, and a big boost in employee morale.