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Attracting and Retaining Great People

If you guessed a raise and a promotion, you're only partially right. The only two things your employees really want are to to feel valued and and to create value. Virgin and Johnson & Johnson have developed company cultures that put employees above shareholders. In his book "Losing My Virginity", Richard Bronson, Founder and CEO of Virgin, states "Convention dictates that a company looks after its shareholders first, its customers next and last of all worries about its employees. Virgin does the opposite. If you start off with a happy, well-motivated workforce, you're far more likely to have happy customers. In due course the resulting profits will make shareholders happy." Johnson & Johnson's 60 year old Credo places employees second after customers, but before community and shareholders. Both companies recognize that their employees are their most valuable assets and thus create organizational cultures that allow employees to demonstrate their value.

1. To Feel Valued

Company culture is central to an employee's sense of value. Culture gets ingrained in a new team member during the on-boarding process and perhaps even earlier. Your company culture may have caused some talented people to self-select out before or during the interview process. Culture is 20% explicit and 80% unstated. In other words, there are a few underlying principles that are explicitly stated within the company that inform millions of possible individual and organizational decisions about how employees relate to one another on a daily basis. The company's principles shape the culture and it is the CEO's responsibility to foster a healthy culture to spur innovation and growth. Principles determine how success is measured internally and externally. Raises, promotions, hiring and firing decisions should be made in alignment with organization's principles.

2. To Create Value

Everyone secretly wants be a super hero or at least feel like they are changing the world in some way. They want to be able to point to something and say "I did that." Imagine that there was an off-boarding process where each employee that was leaving had to make a final presentation to the entire organization. Would your employees have anything to brag about or would they simply just restate the bullet-points on their initial job descriptions? When you give your employees opportunities to create value, they will also feel valued, invested, and invested in. If leadership trusts in its employees and leads instead of manages, the employees will naturally energize innovate, taking the company to new heights that even the CEO's vision could not have imagined.

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Jullien's Purpose Statement

My purpose is to help as many people as possible reach their full potential by helping them making a living doing what they love and in the process of doing so achieve my own. I want to do this through writing, speaking, and creating offline and online spaces that facilitate conversations around purpose.

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