I’ve been doing a lot of reading, studying and observing my broadcast stations and students lately and, maybe I’m late to the party, but something recently hit me solidly between the eyes and has caused an avalanche of thoughts and views.
The eye opener (and pardon me if it’s obvious to you but it wasn’t to me) is –
“It is now up to the EMPLOYER to make employees want to stay.”
It wasn’t like that when we were growing up in the business but it is now firmly in the employers’ hands. Ugh you say? Shouldn’t employees be glad to have a job in such a fabulous industry you say? They get paid pretty well you say?
Well, guess what? The new generation (we like to label them Millennials ) have options. Lots of options. Options are everywhere and broadcast instantaneously via social media. They know the “good” companies and industries and the “bad” ones before they are even looking for jobs. They know what they want and they won’t settle for less. And why should they?
And our industry is in a state of transformation teetering on obsolescence in their eyes whether we want to admit it or not – yet we are busy tweaking and not changing.
A Millennial friend of mine sent me this article https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/millennials-dont-want-fun-you-lead-better-mark-c-crowley by Mark Crowley that certainly struck a chord as I have been thinking about this. In it he describes what makes Millennials the way they are – less willing to sacrifice their lives for work (smart, wish I had lived that way!), and expects personalized attention from their boss as they should!
For us to provide the organization of the future (which is TODAY!) we need to make some real CHANGES and not TWEAKS. TODAY!!
Work must have purpose – telling sellers to sell open avails is not purpose. In fact, it’s de-motivating! But guiding them to truly solving advertiser problems even if it means no TV but only selling digital products gives the buyer and seller satisfaction of doing good work together. And it brings success and trust and renewed contracts! Making sellers work longer, “harder” and micro-managed is not the answer. In fact, it’s the anti-answer! Watch your employees leave at their first opportunity.
Bosses/Managers need to be Coaches – I suggest dumping the title “Manager” and inserting “Coach” whenever possible. General Coach, General Sales Coach, Local Sales Coach – why not? But then you have to BE a Coach! Determine strengths, hire people to fill strengths missing from your team and mentor to the employee’s strengths. As Crowley points out, reviews almost always stress the employee’s weaknesses. And they happen only once or twice a year. Coaching emphasizes positive growth every day and leads to a good work environment and happy employees. Coaching – not bossing or managing!
It is so obvious – employers must provide an environment where employees WANT to stay. Communicate, mentor, coach and provide purpose- real purpose – and your team, your company, YOU will be remark-able.