Interviewing a Tenured Employee: The Staying Power

Abstract

When choosing between career and stability in their business affairs, people often pick the former. The given choice, however, may come at a price, leading to a halt in professional growth. At the same time, though, with the help of a well thought-out performance management, the HRM department of a company is able to assign people with the exact roles that they can perform in the best way possible, it can be assumed that the company will be able to increase its efficiency.

Adopting the strategies of performance management applied by the world’s leading firms, a company leader will find tenured employees of extremely high value for the firm. Therefore, a reasonable compromise between having employees tenured for a considerable time must be leveled with providing the latter with an opportunities for professional growth, as the case of Back to Use company shows.

Introduction: The Touching Story of a Tenured Employee

Mr. Johnson has been working for the Back to Use recycling company for about eleven years as an HR specialist and the manager of the local HRM Department. Although Mr. Johnson’s daily routine has not changed for a decade, he is still perfectly contented with his state of affairs and his position in the company. Which is even more surprising, he does not seem to be willing to upgrade his position to a new level any day soon. Unless the Back to Use Company had decided to adopt a unique performance management strategy based on the experiences on the world’s most successful companies, it would have never come up with a formula for employee motivation and performance quality improvement.

The Power of Comfort and Good Performance Management

When considering Mr. Johnson’s reasons behind his unwillingness to bring any changes into his professional life, one must mention that there are several key reasons for Mr. Johnson to pursue stability in his position:

Content

According to what the respondent said, he was perfectly satisfied with his position and salary, which was why he never considered the idea of changing his job. The given commentary on the specifics of Mr. Johnson’s work, however, gives a lot of food for thoughts. On the one hand, it is rather good that he has finally found the job where he belongs. On the other hand, with no idea of how else to grow professionally, Mr. Johnson might face the threat of losing the touch with the innovations in his field and, therefore, stop evolving as a professional.

Fear

According to the details of the interview, at some point, Mr. Johnson considered the possibility of working as a compensation analyst, therefore, entering the financial sector of the company. However, after the analysis of Mr. Johnson’s performance, it was deduced that Mr. Johnson would not be able to handle learning the basic principles of the company’s financial strategy and supervise the HR department at the same time.

Laziness

As Mr. Johnson claims, changing a job means getting accustomed to a new environment and new responsibilities, which he feels too tedious.

Relationships with colleagues

According to the interview with Mr. Johnson, the latter has built very strong relationships with his colleagues, which the performance management helped considerably. Therefore, Mr. Johnson would prefer to retain his friends.

Feeling appreciated

As Mr. Johnson explained, recognition from the managers and the company’s leader is very rewarding.

Professional growth

According to Mr. Johnson, Back to Use does not demand that he should be constantly upgrading his skills. Mr. Johnson sees it as a positive issue, yet the lack of means for professional growth might result in a professional regression.

Motivation

In Back to Use, employees are motivated by not only financial awards, but also appraisals from the company leader, which contributes to the productivity of the staff.

Good management control

Due to the introduction of the latest technologies, the company features the principle of shared knowledge as its basic form of knowledge management. As a result, every single department of the company can be controlled easily, with an open access to the corporate data.

Financial aspect

As Mr. Johnson stresses, each employee gets not only financial awards, but also certificates and praises from the company’s leader, which works for employees’ motivation.

The Company’s Idea of Performance Management Practices

There is no secret that the idea of performance management is relatively new; however, the existing theories suffice for working on an efficient performance management strategy. However, when picking a performance management strategy, it is important to keep in mind the specifics of the company and adjust the chosen strategy towards the company’s unique needs. As a result, in most cases, using a single performance management strategy hardly seem reasonable, which the case of the Back to Use company proves. When considering the specifics of the company’s performance management, one will be able to trace the elements of several efficient strategies in the company’s approach. Among these, there are translating strategy into action, drawing strategy maps, managed accounting, just to name a few (Adkins, 2006, 3).

With that being said, it must be admitted that Back to Use has managed to create a unique performance management strategy. As a result, every single member of its staff, like Mr. Johnson, appreciates the company’s attempt at providing its employees with decent working conditions and supervising the employees’ performance. It is impressive that the Back to Use Company is relatively small, yet it strives for following the most outstanding examples of performance management to the best of its abilities.

From a Performance Management Standpoint: What the Organization Succeed in

It is noteworthy that the performance management practices adopted in the Back to Use recycling company have been borrowed from the most successful companies not only in the specified field (i.e., recycling), but also from the world’s most successful companies period. For instance, such aspect of performance management as the workforce motivation has clearly been inspired by the example of the Apple Corporation, which executes a very peculiar policy towards its employees.

Another important element of performance management that makes the Back to Use company stand out of the range of the companies alike is its policy towards financial issues. In addition, Back to Use seems to have incorporated the elements of performance management that the Microsoft Corp. features in its daily routine. As the existing sources claim, the Microsoft Corp. uses the S.M.A.R.T. framework in order to get its priorities in line and makes sure that the changes in the organization and production process should be as subtle as possible (Shaw, 2004, 140).

The second most important Back to Use company’s strategy on the management control should also be marked. Therefore, it must be admitted that the company succeeds in a number of tasks and manages to perform brilliantly on all levels; however, by far the most impressive aspect of the company’s performance management concerns the strategies applies to achieve success. The company could have simply copied the strategy of performance management adopted by one of the world’s leading enterprises. Instead, however, Back to Use has created a unique strategy for performance management, which is tailored to the specifics of the company.

Another famous company whose great example Back to Use has followed in its attempt to provide its employees with perfect working conditions is Toyota, Inc. one of the most successful companies of the XXI century, Toyota does not seem to grow any weaker; quite on the contrary, its employees enjoy their jobs and are completely satisfied with the opportunities provided by the company. Taking Toyota’s example, Back to Use has put the following methods to practice:

  • Setting annual goals;
  • Communicating the aforementioned goals to the employees;
  • Using calibrated reviews to evaluate the employees’ performance;
  • Adopting the just-in-time approach (taking only the actions that are necessary only when needed and only to the extent that is required, as it is explained in Putting the customer back to the front (2006)).

It should also be mentioned, though, that, unlike Back to Use, Toyota, Inc. uses the key principles of motivation, coaching and mentoring in order to provide the employees with the means to perfect their skills. Back to Use, on the contrary, seems to have left the idea of skills improvement out of its sight. Therefore, Back to Use should consider the means to provide its employees with the chance to grow professionally. Eventually, such features of Back to Use’s performance management as encouragement of the employees’ self-evaluation should also be given a proper mentioning.

Opportunities for the Organization: A Long-Term Perspective

When it comes to defining the key opportunities of the Back to Use company, one must mention that the company has a number of assets that can be used efficiently in its further development. To start with, one could argue if the company truly “ensures employees have the skills and capabilities to contribute maximally” (Pulakos, 2009, 5). However, the company offers its employees a consistent information sharing process and makes sure that job satisfaction rates should be high enough in the firm.

It is worth keeping in mind, though, that, to become truly successful, Back to Use will have to come up with a unique strategy that will define its mission and vision. At present, the latter two seem pretty basic, i.e., providing good services and striving for the employees’ well-being. What Back to Use needs is a unique approach that will make it stand out among the rest of the companies and will help it avoid imitating other successful firms.

Conclusion: Sitting in the Sun, Counting My Money

Checking the performance of the company staff must be by far one of the most challenging tasks of the company managers, seeing how the given task presupposes that every single organizational process, as well as the specifics of the organizational behavior within the company should be considered in the most careful way possible.

It would be wrong to deny that Back to Use offers a flawless performance management strategy. As it has been specified above, it has its problems, the key one being the company’s inability to provide the employees with training courses for improving their professional skills. However, for a relatively small business, the company is doing very well. What the company must do not is consider the possibilities of improving and/or training the skills of its staff.

Despite the fact that the Back to Use has not clearly defined its style of performance management and obviously needs come up with better opportunities for professional growth for its employees, the company has been doing quite well in performance management. Back to Use has followed the best examples out there, and what it needs now is defining its unique approach that will fit the company’s values, mission and vision.

Reference List

Adkins, T. (2006). Case studies in performance management. New York, NY: John Wiley & Sons.

Pulakos, E. D. (2009). Performance management: A new approach for driving business results. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell.

Putting the customer back to the front (2006). Strategic Direction, 22(5), 26.

Shaw, K. N. (2004). Changing the goal-setting process at Microsoft. Academy of Management Executive, 18(4), 139–142.