Imagine if your workforce were measurable. Not just measurable by performance but by characteristics AND performance. Wouldn’t that be great? You could individualize the employees and make them each a unique asset of your company that you can leverage optimally like any other asset.
With these employees, you could achieve so many good things.
Build successful managers by finding clusters of leaders in certain roles
Organizations are only as good as their management. Often managers are poor leaders who fail to motivate their teams to deliver the maximum output. However, research has shown that the output of an organization can be increased by engaging with employees.
Managers can be trained to overcome potential characteristic gaps, resulting in better engagement, better leaders, and better output. A Harvard Business Review article states that employee engagement can result in a one percent value increase. At a company like Best Buy, that value equates to more than $100,000 of the store’s annual operating income
Give career advice to each employee that’s supported by numbers and not gut feelings
Often there’s no good career guidance available for your employees. They usually get advice based on methodologies that follow certain outdated paths, e.g. climbing the corporate ladder according to seniority.
What if you anticipated the best steps for an individual according to characteristics and statistics? For example, an employee’s age, level of experience, and number of school-aged children would all be important factors in determining if a corporate role is an appropriate next step.
Hire the right people based on academic methods rather than simple interviews
The cost to hire is enormous, not including onboarding or the risk of failure. When you need to replace a successful employee, having measurable information about his or her innate characteristics makes hiring easier. This helps you choose the best applicant for the position. Another advantage: the characteristics don’t change over time. Once you have the profile you can apply the mentioned advantages as well.
Manage customer/account teams flexibly to fit characteristics not geography
You can take the new possibilities to the extreme example. What if you created customer service teams to correspond with information you have about specific customers? If you knew that agitated female customers calling the complaint hotline from southwest Florida statistically responded better to older males from Alabama, then you could route the calls appropriately. Your southern female caller could be routed to “Jim,” who has a score of 80 in the “collaborative” characteristic and a minimum of 75 in “easygoing.” Simply copying and extending this analytics model to dating platforms would yield successful results as well.
Obviously, there will be those who oppose the idea of “numberizing” an employee, and there can be a negative perception of this topic in general. But, if employees are honest with themselves, they’ll recognize that the advantages outweigh the risks. Viewing employees and customers factually levels the playing field and supports fair, unbiased treatment. In hiring alone, this could prevent poor practices like promoting the buddy over the best-suited candidate, the long-term employee over the more qualified one, or the “career politician” over the best leader.
What are your thoughts—two thumbs up or too far away from reality?
If you’re interested in reading more on this subject, check out:
- The Real Cost of Bad Bosses
- How HR Executives Can Prevent World Revolution
- The True Cost of Hiring Employees (INFOGRAPHIC)