Business Rules That Drive Employees Away

RULEIt is hard to unlearn the messages that we have heard repeated since we were children. One of them is ?Business is a stiff and formal place. To be human and spontaneous is fun, but it isn?t professional!?

Some organizations understand the connection between passion and performance, but a lot of them missed that memo completely. They run their organizations like prison camps.

I know, because my inbox fills up every day with mail from folks who could get a demerit for coming back three minutes late from lunch ? and I?m talking about Knowledge Workers!

Some CEOs are out of touch. Their HR leaders might try to get them to wake up and smell the new-millennium talent market coffee, but self-delusion is a powerful drug.

Sometimes it takes a shock ? a wave of top employees hitting the bricks and going to work for your competitors, for instance ? to deliver the message ?The only way you can keep great employees in the company is by treating them like great employees.?

If you are the person delivering this person, try not to add an extra ?Duh!? at the end.

Here are five truly idiotic HR policies that will keep your best employees racing for the exits the minute they get the chance ? and keep you re-filling the same positions over and over until somebody pulls the needle out of your chief executive?s arm.

Industrial Revolution-Era Attendance Policies

You can?t hire Knowledge Workers, give them meaty problems to solve and then watch their comings and goings as though they were kids being dropped off at daycare. They are adults, for starters, and beyond that you hired them.

You could have hired anybody. Presumably your hiring process is thorough. Why would you hire people you don?t trust? Don?t you trust yourself enough to hire great people?

If somebody works after hours in the evening you should expect to see them arriving late the next morning. You don?t have to track those hours. If you?re tracking hours for salaried employees, you are unclear on the concept of a salary.

Insulting Performance Review Processes

It?s high time we got rid of all individual performance reviews. They are pointless and a huge waste of time, but some review processes are more insulting than others.

If you give your managers a bell curve and tell them that only a certain percentage of employees can be rated top performers, another percentage average performers and so on, then you are literally designing mediocrity into your team. Is that what you want?

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