Afternoon Tea in Jerusalem Blog

Life in Israel

Israeli commercial life and society

In addition to my work as a business coach, one of my interests is blogging about life in Israel. This is a country full of contrasts – over eight million citizens living in an area the size of Wales. You can see snow and the lowest place on the globe in the same day. Although surrounded by geopolitical extremes, Israel has achieved a decade of high economic growth. My work brings me in contact with an array of new companies, exciting technologies and dynamic characters. Sitting back with a relaxing cup of strong tea (with milk), you realise just how much there is to appreciate in the Holyland. Large or small operations, private sector or non profit, my clients provide experiences from which others can learn and benefit.


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Business coaching – keeping the good employees

It is one of those subjects that keeps coming up with my clients. How can they lock on and retain their better employees, even when pay rises are not available?

One obvious way is to call somebody in for a chat. Talk about all the good things they are doing. Chuff them up. However, this perfectly obvious solution, is not so perfect in itself. According to James Adonis, an expert on employee engagement:

Research shows the majority of performance appraisals have zero impact on performance. One reason for this is that appraisals are often laborious. When both employees and managers dread them, they can’t ever be effective.

Adonis goes on to point out that few receive a 100% score card. What is important to note is whether the final score is handed to somebody, who feels that they will not achieve the top result, or to a colleague who understands that have outperformed most others. If the latter, that person will probably continue to do well.

Adonis offers some advice for handling employees in either category. A common theme between the two groups is the need for a senior manager or owner to ask questions. They should show that they are genuinely engaged and that they care. They will also be able to find out work makes a person ‘tick’, thus allowing them to manage the expectations of colleagues.

Personally, I find that there is a further issue that is all too often forgotten by employers. They are required to find a method that allows their employee to feel that they are respected; that they are valued. In the past few weeks, I have seen two key workers in the Jerusalem area just up and leave, the energy and innovation previously sucked out of them by superiors seeking more while withholding positive feedback.

And had they been handed an extra few percent as a bonus or a monthly salary increase, it would not have done it for them. They had been shoved around for too long. In other words, they simply could no longer bear the thought of coming into work every day. How depressing!

I suspect that many readers may find the last two paragraphs a touch obvious. So, here is the challenging question: Why is it that we hear about such stories all the time? And, if we are really honest with ourselves, how often have we also been guilty of such crimes and lack of consideration?

To be blunt, if you invest in a few minutes of showing your appreciation, it may save a fortune compared to the cost of replacing an employee.


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