Getting the most out of your Workforce


So, you are in a meeting room and you are doing some foundation brainstorming on how you are going to grow the business and create the scale of profits that you enjoyed 5 years ago. Simple objective, the whiteboard is wiped clean, you have probably picked up a Black, Blue or Purple marker and have taken a sigh and said the single inspirational word “Right?”

The interesting ‘brown paper’ exercise is a common approach for getting ideas, but as you start to call out the boxes and herring-bone to ideas, are there any early boxes that include the word ‘Employee’? or a similar workforce word? If you think as employees as an overhead rather than an opportunity then you may be missing a vital thought in your storming process. Yes, people are solutions rather than ideas, but putting this resource on the board early is important.

I have lived through many reduction processes, where resource has to be taken out of the business as it is no longer giving the level of contribution that the company wants, but try to look through this financial aspect of the workforce and ask yourself a question, “If our employees could find a solution to some of the problems we have, would you think of them as an Asset or a Cost?”  This is the reason why I always think that despite being competitive and getting to transformation cost improvement, you need to maximise the return from your people. Are your Talent in the right jobs? do your employees understand what you are trying to do? are you empowering them? are you using them in the ideation process?

Now, go back to the whiteboard, pick up the Red Pen and add a new box!

PS. If you need some help with this, drop me a line, in black, blue, purple, green or red!

About David Dugdale
Business Transformation Consultant

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