Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Leveraging Gilbert's Model: Assessment

In an earlier post I shared the Behavioral Engineering Model developed by Thomas Gilbert in his 1978 article “Human Competence: Engineering Worthy Performance". I have received numerous requests for my thoughts on how to leverage that model in very practical ways inside an organization so here goes...

You can identify barriers to performance by asking salient questions related to each of the six cells in the model. I like to teach this model to organizational leaders and the questions to ask are a favorite job aid that is used to assess the team and its individual contributors. Of course, you want to go through the cells in the following order so that you tackle the least expensive-highest impact issues first.

Information - the data needed to succeed (the external inputs required for success come in the form of data that I use to do my job and data that tells me how well I am doing my job)
  1. Do I know what is expected of my team? Have I clearly communicated that to my team members? (Does the company have a clear vision, mission, strategy, and plan? How does it cascade down to my team? Are we working on the right things the right way at the right time?)
  2. What metrics should I be capturing on each employee in order to drive the desired results? (For example, measuring number of new sales drives a killer instinct to capture new deals, but does not foster relationship-building treatment of existing customers so those go away.)
  3. Am I capturing accurate data about employee performance? (The performance management inputs must be both valid and reliable or they will not be trusted.)
  4. Do I give my employees regular and timely feedback about how they are performing? Do I review both what they have accomplished and how they reached those results?
  5. Am I effective in delivering feedback? Do my team members make the required changes? Do they really know what is expected and what our priorities are?
  6. Do my employees have real-time access to feedback on their performance? (Can they see the data themselves and make adjustments as necessary?)
  7. What are the inputs/data that my employees need in order to do their job properly? (For example, if we create layouts for magazine ads, where do we get the copy that we use?)
  8. Are those inputs accurate, relevant, and timely? If not, how can we make them so?
  9. How can I help my employees streamline access to the information that they need in order to make decisions? (This is not related to empowerment, that is assumed at this point.)

Resources - the tools, financing, processes and procedures, systems, training, raw materials, technology (hardware and software), workspace (physical environment is safe, clean, organized), time, and other resources needed to succeed (ask the following questions about each one of the items in this list)
  1. Do my people have access to the resource?
  2. Are the resources available in a timely fashion?
  3. Is the resource relevant and accurate? Does it meet our quality standards/requirements?
  4. Do the resources work as expected/needed? (This relates to downtime that is both unexpected and scheduled.)
  5. Are we both efficient (not too much and not too little) and effective in how we leverage these resources?
  6. Does my team know how to fully leverage the resource? What bad habits should we eliminate? What best practices are not universally adopted? What changes would result in us being even more effective when leveraging team resources?
  7. What external resources have been involved in or caused incidents and near-misses?

Incentives - external motivators/consequences that encourage employees to want to succeed (both rewards and punishment)
  1. Are the financial incentives consistently and fairly distributed based on clearly-defined and commonly understood triggers?
  2. How does compensation for this job compare with similar jobs inside and outside of the company in this town?
  3. Have I put enough pay at risk to drive the right behaviors and results?
  4. Does the pay attract the best talent to this role? Have I justified/documented the benefits of paying a little more for a significantly better performer (i.e. have I created an effective business case for the pay grade)?
  5. Are negative consequences effectively aversive? Does the progressive discipline process quickly result in improved performance or amicable exits?
  6. What "hidden" (i.e. not obvious) incentives drive certain behaviors and actions at work?
  7. What behaviors and actions am I unconsciously or accidentally encouraging and how?
  8. Are top performers praised by all or ridiculed by some?
  9. Do I model the performance that I expect of my team members?
  10. Is this a great place to work?

Motives - slippery set of life experiences and mental models that shape one's attitude as manifested by beliefs, which are exhibited as behaviors
  1. Why did my employee just do that?
  2. What does my employee really care about and how does that tie to this job? Is the work aligned with their personal goals?
  3. Is this work meaningful? Is it clear how the job activities impact the customer, coworkers, the team, the company, and/or the shareholders? Is there a clear line that ties this job to the company vision, mission, strategic plan, etc.?
  4. What do my employees really like and really dislike about this job? What can I do to create more satisfaction?
  5. How well did my team score on the "engaged employee" assessment?
  6. What is the energy level of my team today?

Capacity - a mix of aptitude and competence/ability that ensure that employees could do the job - if so inclined (Gilbert limited this to things for which the employee does not have a choice about, which would have put attitude in the final bucket, but I believe that some people do not have the capacity to control their emotions.)
  1. What are the physical requirements of this job (e.g. lift 40 pounds or shorter than 6 feet 3 inches)? Do my people meet those requirements? Can I adjust the work environment to accommodate for any gaps (e.g. wheelchair ramps)?
  2. What are the intellectual requirements of this job (e.g. IQ below 120 for street beat cops)? Have I measured for that requirement?
  3. What are the emotional requirements to succeed in this job? How do I measure that? What interpersonal skills are required? What intrapersonal skills?
  4. What previous experience is required to succeed in this job? What evidence/justification do I have of this need? (see these blog entries on the traps you may fall into here)
  5. What innate predispositions directly correlate to success and/or failure on the job (i.e. aptitude)?
  6. What personal barriers are preventing my team members from maximizing their results/output?
  7. What employee attributes have led to the most incidents and near-misses? How am I managing those?

Knowledge/Skill - what you must know and be able to do to succeed in your job
  1. Have I taught my employees the exact steps to take using a clear and accurate process map or outline?
  2. Have I defined exactly what my employees must know and be able to do to execute their jobs efficiently and effectively? How do I assess my existing and potential future team members against these knowledge and skill requirements?
  3. Is there a safe (i.e. no real impact on the company's performance and no fear of learning from failure) environment in which my employees can practice before actually doing the work?
  4. Do my employees have on-demand/instant access to answers and examples of best practices? Do they have access to experts, including me, when they need direction/instructions?
  5. How long does it take a new hire to reach full production? What can be done to accelerate the learning curve?
  6. Am I wasting time focusing on improving commodity skills (i.e. things that the employee should have known before getting this job that 'everyone' knows)? How should I change the selection process to account for those?
  7. Based on how this employee is performing, should I be using supportive or directive leadership behaviors?
  8. Who is an expert with few bad habits that can mentor this employee on that specific need/gap?
  9. What assignments (e.g. projects) will help this employee quickly improve his/her knowledge or skills?
  10. What will my direct reports really learn from the training classes that they can attend? Do I support the use of the new knowledge and skills they learned?

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Ernst & Young on the Balanced Scorecard

My all-time favorite introduction to the Balanced Scorecard was created by some brilliant people in Ernst & Young's Swedish office in 2000. I finally found a cached version of this video on Google's servers so check it out while you still can!

Click here to see the video.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Rating Performance Factors

Once you have identified performance metrics and you have made them SMART (specific, measurable, ambitious, realistic, and time-referenced), you can rate the performance of an organization, department, team, or individual employee. I recommend that you develop a weighted measurement system so that the most important performance objectives earn the greatest focus from your employees. This can be done in a simple manner when you review the objectives with your team.

First, make it very clear how important each objective is. I suggest that you use the following scale:
  1. Mission Critical – employees in this position must succeed in this area.
  2. Very Important – this factor is one of the most important for this position.
  3. Useful – this factor can help employees in this position be seen as successful.
When you then sit down to review results with team members you can put their results in a matrix. Each column represents how important the objectives are. The most important objectives are in the first column. The rows represent how well that employee has executed against each objective. If someone has emphasized an objective to the detriment of others they will be doing very well, but perhaps too well. Therefore, the very top row is actually not a positive thing, it is "excessive focus". That is just as problematic as having a performance metric in a lower row (e.g. underperforming). The rows I recommend are:
  1. Excessive Focus – the employee ignored other important factors because he/she was so focused on doing this well.
  2. Exceeded Requirements/Expectations – the employee did more than I had hoped or expected in this area.
  3. Met Requirements/Expectations – the employee was as successful in this area as I wanted or needed him/her to be.
  4. Missed Requirements/Expectations – the employee did not live up to my expectations or did not fully realize my requirements in this area.
  5. No Focus – the employee seemed to ignore this factor.

This 15-cell matrix (5 rows x 3 columns) drives home a very clear, visual message. Of course, you must discuss each individual result as measured during the performance period that you are discussing with the employee, but the visual representation of their performance is what will stick in their mind. Their goal will be to have all objectives in the second row across every column.

Individual Performance Factors Based on Kaplan and Norton’s Balanced Scorecard

For those readers who want a more detailed list of actual performance metrics that may be used to measure individual performance, this list has been successfully used in several settings, including a multinational's contact center. Each of the four cells in the balanced scorecard matrix are represented. However, instead of the corporate-level goals, this outline breaks the metrics down into those that should be used to measure individual performance. For companies that want to roll performance up (as opposed to cascading objectives downward), aggregate results of individual team members should be used as the performance objectives of that team's leader. All direct reports roll up to their boss at all levels of the organization.

Productivity & Process
  • Quantity of work completed
  1. Number and scope of activities completed
  2. Percent of work completed on current projects/assignments
  • Efficiency & timely delivery
  1. Speed of work relative to expectations and peers
  2. % of deadlines met
  3. Efficient use of down time
  4. Efficient use of people involved
  5. Efficient use of tools and resources
  6. Efficient use of money
  • Quality of work
  1. Valid
  2. Precise/concise
  3. Verified as accurate
  4. Met requirements and scope
  5. Consistent look and feel
  6. Clear and coherent
  7. Justifiable content (not too much, not too little)
  8. Solid craftsmanship
  9. Organized and planned (and plan executed)
  10. Thorough
  11. Applied best practice(s)

Impact on Bottom Line
  • Impact on other employees, leaders, customers, company, industry
  1. How actions or results affected direct reports
  2. How actions or results affected peers
  3. How actions or results affected self
  4. How actions or results affected the boss
  5. How actions or results affected internal customers
  6. How actions or results affected external customers (Travel Partners or guests)
  7. How actions or results affected the company
  8. How actions or results affected the industry (cruise, travel, hospitality, or function)
  • Increase revenue
  1. Dollar amount that the company made as a result of the employee’s actions
  2. Projected impact that actions will have on company revenue
  3. Unintended consequences (positive or negative) measured or observed
  • Increase customer loyalty
  1. Quantified increase in customer loyalty as a result of the employee’s actions
  2. Projected impact that actions will have on customer satisfaction
  3. Unintended consequences (positive or negative) measured or observed
  • Increase in productivity
  1. Quantified increase in company, team, and/or customer productivity as a result of the employee’s actions
  2. Projected impact that actions will have on productivity
  3. Unintended consequences (positive or negative) measured or observed
  • Increase in quality
  1. Quantified increase in company, team, and/or customer accuracy and/or precision as a result of the employee’s actions
  2. Projected impact that actions will have on quality
  3. Unintended consequences (positive or negative) measured or observed
  • Reduce costs
  1. Quantified reduction in company, team, or customer spending or expenses as a result of the employee’s actions
  2. Projected impact that actions will have on costs
  3. Unintended consequences (positive or negative) measured or observed
  • Reduce cycle time/process time
  1. Quantified reduction in the time it takes to complete company, team, and/or customer processes and/or activities as a result of the employee’s actions
  2. Projected impact that actions will have on activities, processes, and systems
  3. Unintended consequences (positive or negative) measured or observed

Customer Satisfaction and Loyalty
  • Compliment/Complaint ratio
  1. Positive vs. negative customer and employee reactions
  2. Unsolicited compliments vs. complaints
  • Identified and met or exceeded expectations
  1. Number of projects where stakeholders mapped (identified and their position documented)
  2. % of stakeholders who confirm their expectations and requirements were met
  • Customer satisfaction survey results
  1. Results of regularly-scheduled surveys
  2. Results of solicited customer surveys
  • Impact on team credibility
  1. Number of times that personal actions brought the team into question
  2. Number of times that personal actions helped the entire team gain respect or recognition
  • Continuously improving
  1. Results improved for same solutions or activities
  2. Streamlining processes, procedures, policies, or methods

Learning & Growth
  • Organization’s core competencies assessment
  1. Self vs. boss ratings
  2. 360 ratings
  • Position competencies assessment
  1. Self vs. boss ratings
  2. 360 ratings
  • Error reduction/repeat ratio
  1. Number of errors vs. last time on like activities
  2. Number of mistakes by level of impact
  • Increased autonomy
  1. Amount of time spent getting specific direction (whether sought or given)
  2. Self-regulated efforts
  3. Proactively seeking solutions
  4. Focusing on the right objectives/results
  • Creative or new solutions applied
  1. Number of new ideas sought out
  2. Number of ways existing ideas used in new ways
  3. Number of existing ideas adapted to new situations
  4. Number of completely innovative solutions generated
You can clearly see the connections between this post and my earlier posts on performance management topics. I hope that this, more inclusive and thorough, review of individual performance helps you build a scorecard for the members of your team.

Individual Performance

All employees should:

Contribute to Team Success – establish and maintain team credibility by sustaining the positive perceptions of others, share best practices and help others, and help complete team member’s work when they are out of the office.
Produce Results Relative to Company Investment – ensure value of productivity meets or exceeds rate of pay and contribute to team results relative to percentage of team investment represented.
Meet Customer Requirements and Expectations – establish or identify and met or exceed internal and external customer performance requirements and expectations, including quality and other standards.
Produce Timely Results – delivery results on time, including work, reports, and/or products; be on time, stay engaged throughout the workday, and make up lost time.
Optimize Resources – optimize use of all resources, including tools, equipment, budget/money, and people; minimize waste.
Work Autonomously – achieve results with minimal supervision; identify, source, and invest in solutions where skills do not match requirements.
Constantly Improve – identify opportunities to increase efficiency and efficacy all of the time; surpass previous personal bests; continuously produce more year over year.
Develop and Maintain Effective Work Habits – focus on improving how results are achieved, increase interpersonal competence, eliminate ineffective behaviors, and increase effective behaviors.
Champion the Company – represent the company through professional dress, speech, and behavior in the office, with customers, and in the community; promote achievement of company goals and realization of the company mission; maintain alignment with the company vision and model the core competencies at all times.

Whether you are an executive, middle manager, front-line supervisor, or individual contributor, these are objectives that everyone should be focused on at all times.

Team Performance

Below the organization or department level, performance can be viewed at the team level. Basically, this is a view of the team leader's individual performance. If the leader is effective then the team should excel in each of these areas. The questions around team performance are the same as those for project management. How effective is this group at getting their work done?

Integration - are all team resources such as hardware, software, chemicals, etc., coordinated properly?
Quality - is the team meeting the agreed-upon quality requirements? Metrics include quality planning, quality assurance, and quality control.
Schedule - is work completed in a timely manner? Metrics include activity sequencing, resource planning, activity duration estimating, and work schedule development and control.
Cost - are approved budgets being met? Metrics include resource estimating, cost estimating, and cost monitoring and control.
Risk - have issues that may or do inhibit performance been identified and proactively tackled? The team should identify, assess, and mitigate risks associated with factors such as new technology, very tight time constraints, lack of availability of skilled resources, and customer readiness for the team’s work.
Communication/Information - does the team generate appropriate information and disseminate it in a timely manner to team members, management, and other stakeholders to ensure that their expectations are consistent with the realities of the team’s progress or results?
Organizational Impact - how effectively does the team identify and plan for organizational changes that may or should occur?
People - is the team effectively led? Does the team's boss provide effective leadership and management of the team, including organizational planning, staff acquisition, conflict management, and team development?
Procurement - how effectively does the team manage the processes required to acquire goods and services from outside and inside the company? Metrics include procurement planning, RFP preparation, source selection, and contract negotiation and administration.

Organizational objectives can be cascaded down to a team in similar language, but if you are only measuring a team's performance these generic categories can be very useful. Exact metrics depend on what the function of the team is and how they operate. Hopefully, these nine categories provide some structure for setting up team objectives.

The Big Seven

Recently, I have received a number of requests for help with identifying performance management metrics. Therefore, I wanted to post a few ways to look at performance. Let's start with the company-wide metrics that are often taught in B-school and are affectionately known as "The Big Seven" by students who have suffered through an MBA program.

1. Increase revenue
2. Increase productivity
3. Improve quality
4. Increase customer satisfaction
5. Increase bench strength
6. Reduce costs and waste
7. Reduce cycle and delivery time

In response to a recent LinkedIn Answers question I pointed out that even though these objectives are meant to drive overall organizational performance, they can be applied at all levels. For that particular question I pointed out how six of the seven can be used to measure the value added by a company's purchasing department.

Regardless of location or size, procurement has several significant impacts on the overall organization. If you look at the 'big seven' performance objectives that they teach in US business schools then you can define the impact that supply chain/purchasing/procurement has across a fairly powerful spectrum.
1. Increase Revenue - the Sales team must have the proper resources or they will not succeed. It does not matter if they are both willing and able if they do not have the products to sell or the tools that enable them to make the sale (software, phone system, etc).
2. Increase Productivity - personal productivity relies very heavily on having the right tools at the right time working the right way.
3. Increase Quality - you can imagine the impact that purchasing had on our guests when I worked for Royal Caribbean Cruises. If the strawberries were rotten the entire ship was slammed on the guest comment cards. However, the extremely comfortable mattresses and sheets resulted in praise from everyone.
4. Increase Customer Satisfaction - this is all about procuring the right tools for the job. If the purchasing agent takes the time to understand how the tools are used and what makes one better for the business than another (value) then s/he can have a significant impact by buying a tool that allows employees to delight the customer (e.g. the right content management system will enable the call center to quickly find accurate information when answering customer questions).
5. Improve Bench Strength - internal to your own team you should make sure that you have planned for near-term workforce needs and have developed talent as needed. Your actions as purchasers can only tangentially affect this objective.
6. Reduce Cost - there is more to this that meets the eye. Sure, things can be procured for a low cost, but a very savvy purchasing team can train the entire company on how to negotiate (or not) with vendors. If people who are clueless or corrupt get involved then your vendors can get the upper hand during negotiations and rob your company blind. I have seen several IT people who favored a product erode the company's negotiating position by giving insider information during negotiations. They were not evil, they just really wanted to help the vendor that they felt was clearly best and deserved the most possible money from the company. (As one IT person said, "We have a ton of money so it doesn't really matter.")
7. Reduce Cycle Time - excellent negotiators can get faster computers and more bandwidth for the same price that competitors are paying for inferior products and services. That extra power and speed is a distinct competitive advantage because it cuts down on the overall time to deliver answers. Clearly, just-in-time delivery of raw materials for construction can also improve cycle time by eliminating wait.

Bonus thought: there is an eight performance metric.

8. Increase Market Capitalization - this is effectively the net result of the first seven objectives being met. If you do the first six things right then your company's tangible and intangible value should increase and be justly rewarded by investors.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Recruiting Videos

Visit and pull up Jeff Sass's video called "Work's A Beach!". He shot this with his phone before going into the office, downloaded it to YouTube, pushed it to Twitter while walking back to work, and had an interested candidate Twitter back before Jeff reached his desk. The person that wrote back was JC, and JC ended up earning the job (after properly being interviewed and such).

What is the lesson learned for your company?

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Building a Job Profile or Core Competency Profile

The steps I typically follow depend on the nature of the position that I am looking at. If the position is a leadership role within the organization and it is fairly senior then I am probably going to leverage the Lominger Leadership Architect products. I am certified in all of their products. If the role is more tactical then I am going to use a job analysis to identify the competencies and from there build the required strategies and tools.

Leadership example:
  1. Assess the required culture for driving the company's vision, mission, and strategic plan by facilitating a discussion with the executive team. A deck of cards (Cultributes) is sorted by each executive and the aggregate results and agreements define the organizational environment needed to drive the company forward.
  2. The environmental attributes are converted into a core competency model by software. This set of competencies is also discussed by the executives, who often want to have their own team assessed using a 360-degree feedback tool that Lominger developed (Voices).
  3. The results of the multi-rater feedback are shared in confidence with each executive. An individual development plan is created that includes learning, application, and feedback loops. Most executives embrace the feedback and want to improve in any areas of weakness, even if the weakness is only relative to other strengths.
  4. The collective picture of the executive team is shared with them and gaps in the core competency model are identified. Future members of the executive team will be chosen, in part, based upon a competency assessment so that the executive team can add competencies that are currently under-represented.
  5. I create strategic plans for sourcing, attracting, and selecting future executives that will bring the missing pieces to the team. I build the selection process and tools, which will include a behavioral interview and other assessments.
  6. I am often asked to provide coaching to senior executives in areas where they want to improve and require confidential feedback (e.g. managing ambiguity).

Key technical position example:
  1. Bring together a group that represents the boss, peers, customers, and high performers for the identified position. Review all existing job descriptions and other performance management data.
  2. Conduct a near-term scenario plan with the group so that we have some reasonable collective idea about what the position may entail over the next 2-3 years.
  3. Collectively document the 4-7 most critical performance objectives for the people in the position, given what we have discussed thus far.
  4. For each objective, define the activities that must be executed well to meet the objective. We also identify some of the activities that, if done poorly, could seriously impact the person, team, or company in a negative way.
  5. For each activity, we identify the competencies required to execute the activity as flawlessly as possible. The competencies will include knowledge, skill, experience, ability, and personal traits.
  6. I compile the results and bring the group back together to review and prioritize the list of competencies. In this meeting the group also splits the competencies into two categories: price of admission and train/develop.
  7. Based on the price of admission competencies (those that are a commodity or those that are almost innate), I create strategic plans for sourcing, attracting, and selecting candidates for the position. This includes the development of behavioral interview guides, a scorable simulation, and possibly another assessment.
  8. Based on the training/development competencies (those that are not reasonably learned outside of the organization) I put a strategy together for providing on-demand access to critical information and best practices, instructor-led and self-paced training, learning activities (e.g. special projects that will force application of the required competency), and feedback programs (e.g. mentoring assignments and accountability coaches). I may create some of the materials myself, but typically there is so much work to be done here that I am assigned subject matter experts and people who need to learn the skills to help me.
  9. A final step that many organizations want to take is to assess the incumbents against the competency-based profile that was just created. This leads to identification of people who need to improve in some of the critical areas. Those employees are often the first to take advantage of the new learning strategy and tools.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Using Tests During Selection

Late last year we decided to improve our Sales selection process. We completed job analyses on both inside and outside Sales team members who were consistent top performers according to production numbers. We created two tools based on the price-of-admission competencies: behavioral interview guides and work simulations, but we also wanted to assess sales aptitude. It was clear that aptitude had a great deal more to do with their success than any specific sales process or technique. In fact, they were very diverse in their approach, the tools that they used, and their demographic makeup. The only historical trait that many shared was their involvement in sports during high school and/or college. One was a former NFL player.

To identify a sales aptitude assessment vendor we started with the usual tools: Google and our professional networks. We ended up with over 12 companies that we decided to investigate. All were the 'big dogs' in the employee assessment space. However, the approach that each company used to sell us their tests were very different. Most resisted our insistance on an internal validation study because their products were already supported by a great deal of statistical analyses. That showed a lack of appreciation for the impact of organizational culture, sales philosophy, and preferred processes and tools on sales effectiveness.

We only moved forward with those companies that agreed to test a few of our employees so that we could see whether their tool was a match with our own performance data. We asked both top and bottom performers to take two of the assessments at least a week apart. Some of the companies told us that they knew who the top performers were based on the results, but they were completely wrong on roughly 80% of those that they tested. Two of the companies used a different approach. They asked to be told who the top and bottom performers were up front. They then analyzed the results by pointing out the behavioral attributes that were common amongst both the top and bottom performers, which were not all of the attributes that were measured. When we gave them a couple of additional people to assess they were spot-on with predicting who the top and bottom people were based on their prior results.

We also looked at whether the tests would have caused us to rule out any protected class of employees (adverse impact). No such impact was observed as the tests scored a diverse group of people both high and low.

This internal validation process is of critical importance in the selection of a test or assessment. We met the requirements of the EEOC's Uniform Guidelines on Employee Selection Criteria because we made certain that there was no prima facie evidence of discrimination, the test is a business necessity because it will help us hire top performers, and we are also incorporating other, equally-weighted assessments in the process (interview and simulation) so that we don't run into problems with alternative practices with lesser impact on protected classes.

If you are wondering which product we ended up selecting, the final criteria was based on the relationship that the top salesperson at that company built with our selection committee. He was an excellent salesperson in his own right and practiced what he preached:

Michael Hopkins, Senior Vice President
Profiles International, Inc.
5205 Lake Shore Drive
Waco, TX 76710
1-888-744-5205 x141

Sunday, April 27, 2008

The Sourcing Strategy and Plan

There have been several requests for additional information about how to build a sourcing strategy, specifically around tactics that have been successfully used to execute the part of the strategy that is typically called "birds of a feather flock together". Some recruiters recognize that one cannot discriminate and fear that looking for too many similar people will also result in a homogenous group of employees. The value of diversity can not be understated so let me make some points here:
  • Employers should look for diversity not just in the traditional umbrella (e.g. sex, age, etc.), but also in thoughts, behaviors, and goals (not everyone can be the CEO)
  • When filling key positions the competencies required to execute the activities that lead to realizing the performance objectives are more important than what someone looks like
  • Write a great job profile that clearly markets the benefits of working for the company as well as the exciting opportunities and challenges that the selected person will face, include a list of the most critical competencies that candidates must have or are preferred
Clearly, you want to start with a robust employee referral program. If you selected great people then that is the group you want to continue to 'clone'. So, the question is, where are more people like this and how can you tap that market through this group? In today's world that is best done by having those employee leverage their social networking connections. The job profile can be forwarded by your employees to the people in their network whom they believe would represent them well if hired. You should also make finding the next great hire a lucrative event for your employees. Consider how much you would have to pay an external recruiter if they were to bring you the eventual hire...

As the profile is circulated in a viral method you will hit passive as well as active candidates. In your strategy you should clearly define the route you wish to go based on the timing and strategic nature of each hire. If you need someone fast you will need an active candidate. If the position is more strategic you will probably benefit from a more passive candidate. Those take longer to source and may require some research into professional associations, white papers, conference presentations, and other resource pools that indicate someone's expertise, philosophy, and methodology.

Also, don't forget to evaluate the value of each referral source as part of your plan. If you are doing a great job of screening candidates you should end up with a forced-ranking profile of each. Look retroactively at the source of each candidate to also force-rank the quality of each source. For example, if three of the top five candidates were sourced through employee connections on LinkedIn then LinkedIn should be a strategic priority and you should invest accordingly (e.g. pay for some employees to have account upgrades). If none of the top 50% of your candidates came from a specific job board then you should stop wasting time and resources on that board.

If you are shopping for an Applicant Tracking System (ATS) to use in order to execute your strategy, look for a product that either closely matches the plan you have created or one that can be setup to follow your plan. If you want to incorporate the three strategies mentioned above, I suggest you look into Jobvite. A quick search of LinkedIn Answers about ATS's indicates that Jobvite is the preferred ATS that fully leverages social networking as well as source ratings.

One final point, The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs administers a number of laws and regulations. Make sure that your strategy (and your ATS, if you use one) complies with those laws.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Take Advantage of Free Self-Paced Content

With the growing popularity of the belief that knowledge belongs to everyone, the expiration of the training vendor is coming. The need for a large group of itnernal instructional design gurus is also on the wain. With open source solutions and freeware affecting the way that people see intellectual property rights, and with universities opening their vaults by putting free course content online, it is only a matter of time before companies realize that the only training design that is needed internally is subject matter expert (SME) training on company-specific topics such as new hire onboarding and in-house processes or home-grown software. Many leadership development and soft skills development courses will still be instructor-led, but more and more companies are also including those competencies in their hiring profiles because they realize that many of those skills do not improve after training (or, at least, not very quickly).

Harvard's recent release of free self-paced training at is a perfect example of what internal training teams will start to include in their intranet sites, learning management systems, content management systems, wikis, etc. What is your training team doing to prepare for this fundamental shift?

Sunday, March 16, 2008

The Problem With Experts

In an exchange with Sushil Mehrotra through I was reminded that there are two key challenges when leveraging subject matter experts (SME).
  1. As Sushil pointed out, you can learn to copy the behaviors and skills of a recognized expert, but you may not find a way to take those competencies to the next level. The goal should always be to move the standard distribution of your team to the right (increase the number of top performers and raise the top performance bar). So mimicry may help you get better quickly, but just as benchmarking only allows a company to become as good as a competitor, you must apply creativity to take that skill to the next level. The goal is always to create space and differentiate oneself from others.
  2. When you have a SME teach others the 'students' will learn the SME's best habits, but they will also likely learn some of the worst. Everyone falls into patterns of taking shortcuts to be more efficient and some of those may not be fully aligned with the desired way to achieve results (i.e. they may bend the rules a bit). More detrimentally, it is highly likely that a SME has a few bad habits and that those are not differentiated from the best ones by the students. I have come to prefer video as a behavior modeling tool for that exact reason. You can sterilize the model and eliminate the bad habits. These may be as innocuous as taking six steps to complete a task in Excel that should only take two or as grand as not using automation at all to complete a significant task.
So there is a place for subject matter experts in the training and development of others, but it is not a panacea or the most effective quick-fix in most situations. Create some structure and challenge the students to identify ways to take the skill(s) to the next level.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Training vs. Performance Support

Having recently taken on the CLO role (in addition to my role as the Director, Customer Experience) at my company, I was faced once again with the need to accelerate the potential of the training team. I inherited a group of instructor-led classroom training professionals that provided three types of 'training'. They provided technical instruction that covered the primary areas of Operations and the programs that we sell. They delivered 'soft skills' training to customer-facing employees (and a few internal-only people). They delivered motivational presentations. They put a curriculum together for every position and measured success by the percentage of the curriculum that was completed by each employee and by the number of employees that attended each class. Of course, these were very complimentary goals because forcing someone to take all of the assigned classes ensured positive 'butts in seats' numbers as well. But what happened when an employee needed to enhance some knowledge or skill immediately and that class was not scheduled? This team was sharp enough to realize that they also needed to be available to sit with employees to provide that just-in-time assistance.

I needed to do two things very quickly:
  1. This team was full of wonderful people and we needed to fully take advantage of their skills and knowledge across all areas within our parent company. This meant that we needed to organize the existing 42 classes and fully flesh them out so that these 11 trainers could advertise their offer and become fully leveraged.
  2. We needed to identify methods by which we could quickly put answers in the hands of our employees without making them wait for a training class or for a trainer to become available and sit with them.
It took three weeks to accomplish number 1. and the results of that effort will be shared with the leaders of the training organizations at our sister companies this coming week. The trainers created pre tests so that employees who did not need the training could place out of it and stay productive (keep on working). They created post tests so that we could measure an increase of knowledge 30-45 days after training (based on an increase between the pre-test and post-test scores, if any). They created job aids for the students' bosses so that the bosses would know the learning and performance objectives of each class and could hold the students accountable for using what was learned on the job. (The company has also recently beefed up our performance measurement with a more robust set of KPIs that I will monitor pre and post training to reach a Kirkpatrick level three measure of the team's effectiveness.) All of the class materials have been stored in a folder on a shared drive along with an overview so that anyone can pick up and deliver the course with only a little homework to prepare. This also cut down on all travel as there are trainers in each of the three main cities in which we have Operations and Sales groups.

The second objective has taken more work to realize and we must also get IT's approval, which is always interesting. Because people learn different ways we must provided a blended approach to increasing knowledge and improving skills (training ONLY improves gaps in knowledge and skill - see my blog on Gilbert's Model). Not every knowledge gap is also best filled by attending an instructor-led course. Some information should be at the employees' fingertips at all times. Some employees know what to do, but not how to effectively do it. They simply need to see it done right a few times until they master the skill themselves. Employees also need access to experts, and no trainer can be an expert on everything. Finally, we need to expand the offering beyond the line employees and help the leaders effectively do their job. Many people are sent to training to be 'fixed', but training does not fix 'broken' people. Leaders must learn how to identify the root cause of performance problems, and leaders must take ownership of developing their employees. The training team is a support team and our customers are the team leaders and executives. We should not do their job for them.

I am presently working with the trainers to develop skills in the following areas (which will help us realize the second goal):
  • Subject Matter Expert Created Content
    • Enterprise Wiki - a searchable database of information that is updated in real time by the employees (and confirmed for accuracy weekly by assigned experts who have the final say)
    • Behavior Model Video - the video shows an expert executing the skill well (e.g. pre-positioning to prevent a common sales objection) and the attached job aid outlines the steps that were viewed
    • Screencasts - Flash-based software tutorials that demonstrate 'how to' use key functionality in 30 to 60 second clips
    • Facilitated Case Study - the 'students' review a deal prior to the session and identify issues; they share, discuss, and debate the issues during the session; the facilitator types up the documented agreements and sends them to the students and the students' bosses (collectively the group knows more than the trainer/facilitator)
  • Trainer Created Content
    • Self-Paced Training - whether a workbook or a web-based module, the trainer bases the content of the self-directed materials on job analyses (only facts and decisions are taught this way)
    • Job Aid - a quick how-to reference guide (not an FAQ) for common skills that employees should post on the walls of their cubicles
    • Instructor-Led Class - some topics require the opportunity to interact with others, practice the new skill in a safe environment, and to get feedback on that performance
  • Special Learning Activities
    • Assessment - valid and reliable test of soft skills, aptitude, and/or capacity that might be a self-assessment, boss-assessment, or 360 degree-assessment followed by an interpretive feedback session
    • Individual Development Plan or Performance Improvement Plan - specific improvements are defined and documented along with the steps that the employee agrees to take to execute the plan (and improve)
    • Coach - based upon a specific interpersonal skill gap a weaker employee (protégé) is partnered up with a stronger employee (mentor) and their interactions are guided by a plan such as the IDP above
    • Developmental Assignment - most learning comes from doing and evaluating the results of our decisions and actions (both successes and mistakes) so employees are put into roles on projects, etc. where they are forced to excel in the area that needs to be developed

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

The High Cost of Super Stars

I was reminded by today's HBR Management Tip of the Day of the high price of bringing super stars into your organization. First, you have the premium that you have to pay in order to lure them away from their present job (and enough to keep someone else from luring them away from you in the near future). Then, you have the internal cost of envy and frustration (from incumbents who think they are as good or better than the new guy, but being paid a fraction of the salary). However, today's Harvard Business Review tip reminded me of the statistics on super star failure. When they join your company they no longer have the network that they had at their old job (their formal and informal go-to team). They no longer have the same software, processes, policies, and culture that they learned to optimize.

Individual performance drops by 20%, which frustrates the super star and your company.

The actual losses mount as morale declines, roadblocks are intentionally placed in front of the super star, Wall Street punishes you for a highly visible bad hire, and the super star eventually leaves in very public fashion.

Monday, March 10, 2008

How to Build a Success Profile

Establishing Job Profile Context

1. Define the mission of the job.
a. What is the ultimate product or service produced?
b. How does this product or service contribute to the organization's strategy?
c. How would one know whether the mission was being accomplished successfully?
2. Describe the major outcomes/accomplishments required to achieve the mission.
a. Which outcomes does the organization NEED to have?
b. Which outcomes are NICE to have?
3. Define performance standards for each outcome NEEDED.
a. What does someone in this position need to know to achieve the outcomes?
b. What technical skills would be required to achieve the outcomes?
c. What experiences would someone need to have to successfully achieve the outcomes?
d. Which of these knowledge, skills, and experiences are possessed by the best performers, but not by the rest?
4. Identify barriers to achieving the mission and outcomes.
a. What has prevented people from succeeding in the past?
b. Which barriers are caused by knowledge, skill, or experience deficiencies?

Capturing Knowledge, Skill, Experience Requirements

NOTE: Save all knowledge, skill, and experience components for use as a master list of components. These will be used to validate the success profile.

5. Isolate knowledge components.
a. Circle points of knowledge identified as NEED to know, not nice to know (i.e. those that help the best performers in this position succeed beyond the rest of the performers in this same position).
b. To what degree must this knowledge be entrenched to be a best performer? (basic, intermediate, or expert)
6. Isolate skill components.
a. Circle skills that were identified as NEED to have, not nice to have (i.e. those that help the best performers in this position succeed beyond the rest of the performers in this same position).
b. To what degree must each skill be mastered to be a best performer? (basic, intermediate, or expert)
7. Isolate experience components.
a. Circle those experiences that truly differentiated the best from the rest in this position.
b. Which of these experiences would a person have for at least a year before becoming a top performer?

Capturing Leadership Competencies

8. Leverage research. (In this example we will use Lominger's Leadership Architect, which includes 67 research-based leadership competencies.)
a. Mark competencies that are critical by level according to Lominger's research, add the Price of Admission and Competitive Edge unique to that level to the poster.
9. Modify based on incumbents.
a. Identify top three people in the position.
b. Sort through Lominger cards to find the top ten competencies that differentiate those three from the rest (i.e. the top three have more of this than anyone else).
c. Mark top ten on poster with colored dots or 'X' marks.
d. Discuss to reach consensus.
10. Narrow selected competencies down by presence in the general population.
a. Select 8-10 Price of Admission competencies for the Success Profile.
b. Select 5-9 Competitive Edge competencies for the Success Profile.

Validate the Profile

11. Assess all incumbents against all 67 competencies.
12. Identify highest performers and select competencies that they have more of than the other performers.

The Case for Blended Learning

Think back on the training classes that you have attended during your career.  Of those that provided a great deal of theory instead of focusing on the work that you did at the time, did you do anything differently or better as a result of attending that course?  It is highly unlikely that anything changed for better or worse.

Theory can establish a deep understanding, but must be followed by a focus on observable and measurable work-related activities.  For example, learning about effective listening can begin with compelling reasons to become a better listener and theory on how listening works, but improvement won't happen without providing a concrete, easy-to-remember model and plenty of practice time during the class (with immediate feedback).  The learner should also identify critical times to practice effective listening on the job and create a plan for using the model during those times.  Sharing that action plan for listening with your boss is the most powerful anchor because you now have to meet her/his expectations as well.  Had the class stopped with just a theory on listening, real improvements at work would not occur, especially during critical times.

Some Competencies are too Complex to Teach

Some competencies should only be leveraged during selection. Requiring development in a competency that is innate or nearly impossible to improve or to notice improvement has resulted in legal actions by employees against their employers. It is also prudent to ensure that all employee development processes and systems set the learner up for success and not for failure. (If a competency is extremely hard to improve or change then it is not likely to provide significant ROI to provide training on that topic.)

Developmental difficulty is based on several factors:
• How complex the skills are that are needed to execute the competency well
• How much experience is required to master the competency
• How much the attitude, values, opinions, and beliefs of the learner impact the desire to be competent
• How the competency involves, engages, or triggers the learner's emotions
• How much intellectual and cognitive complexity is required for mastery
• How much hard-wiring is required to use the competency
It is also important to note how frequently the competency shows up in normal distributions. The rarest competencies may be the hardest to develop simply based on its rarity.

Keys to Successfully Creating a Competency-Based Training Curriculum

To build a competency-based training and development system or to map existing courses to a competency model, you must be mindful of the four keys to success:
• Training should only include competencies that can be effectively developed (i.e. hard-wired traits that don't significantly change over time won't change as a result of some fabulous training class)
• Students must be able to apply the lessons learned while on the job in observable or measurable ways (if the benefits of training cannot be measured then training will not be valued)
• Courses should teach more than one competency (competencies do not live in isolation so teach clusters of common skills together, e.g. planning, prioritizing, and decision making)
• Courses should be followed by on-the-job application and feedback and bring the manager into the developmental cycle (create job aids for the bosses of the students so that the bosses can hold the students accountable for what was learned)

Communication is the Key to Competency Success

Training, staffing, HR, and line managers often speak different languages. For example, when a manager asks his/her HR representative for permission to seek a new direct report the manager is given a job description following approval. Staffing is told about the opening and screens for 'planning skills' based on the request from the manager. Once the top candidates have been identified and screened the manager selects one based on fit with the rest of the team. Soon the manager realizes that what staffing screened for was different than what the manager understood 'planning' to mean. The HR generalist who had produced the job description disagreed with the manager on the meaning of 'planning skills' and then found that what HR meant per the job description and what the staffing person interpreted were also different. To bring the new employee up to speed as quickly as possible it was decided that the new person should be sent to a training class. Looking through the available classes, two were found that referenced 'planning' in the learning objectives. The manager sent the new employee to the first available class. Upon returning from the class the new employee attempted to show the manager the newly-learned skills only to find that what was being taught was still not what the manager needed the employee to do.

What a painful, yet common, story from a real organization that has a competency model. The real problem is that only the titles of the competencies are in common use instead of the descriptions. The real power of competency-based models lies in the common language that results from the clear and unambiguous definitions of the competencies. This language should be applied to all HR systems so that job descriptions and success profiles lead to consistent interview questions, employees are consistently represented on workforce planning maps, performance appraisal feedback means the same thing to both manager and direct report, and classes teach the competencies as they are commonly understood.

How Trainers Should View Work

There are the worker bees (Implementation/Evaluation), the managers (Translation/Communication), and the top dogs (Creation/Re-Creation). The top dogs are those folks that create initiatives and objectives for ABC COMPANY as a whole and the business units. The job of the managers is to put those initiatives and objectives into words that can be understood and utilized by the worker bees. The worker bees are accountable for both the implementation of the plans crafted by the managers and for evaluating the results to ensure that we are going where we think we are going.

The skills that must be taught fall into three distinct categories: Strategic, Intra/Interpersonal, and Technical. As you move up the organization you will find that there are fewer technical job skills but more strategic skills required. Therefore, a training curriculum should be weighted accordingly with line employees focusing more on technical knowledge and skills, some interpersonal skills related to working with customers and/or team members, and only a presentation on the company's strategy and how the line employees fit into that equation. Mid-management would get a mixture of those same classes with the emphasis being on understanding (not doing) the technical work, managing people (not work), and executing the strategy. Senior leaders will not need to know the technical work, but should have a high-level overview of the company's employee activities; senior leaders need to know how to manage cross-functional processes (and teams of leaders); and senior leaders must know how to craft and cascade strategic plans.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Thomas F. Gilbert's Behavioral Engineering Model

Reference: Thomas F. Gilbert, “Human Competence: Engineering Worthy Performance,” 1978, 1996

Dr. Gilbert recognized that the least expensive solutions happened to be those that were also the easiest and fastest to implement.
  1. Managers should start in the top right cell (factors that are outside of the employee’s control) and ensure that employees have the information they need. If they don’t have that then no other intervention is going to make a significant impact.
  2. If the employees have those three data points then the Manager must look at the next cell and ensure that their team members have all of the resources that they need. Again, without the right resources and employee is set up for failure through no fault of their own.
  3. If the employee has the right resources then the Manager must ensure that the proper incentives are in place. In fact, the employees may be unintentionally incentivized to do the wrong thing (e.g. take shortcuts to make their job easier).
  4. If the proper incentives are in place then the Manager will look at the individual and seek solutions that the employee can take ownership of and improve.
    If the employee has the environmental requirements, but is not getting the job done, the Manager must look at the employee’s motives. If employees are unwilling to do the best that they can do, the behaviors that are observable and/or measurable must be tackled (you cannot easily measure attitude, but you can measure the associated behaviors). Progressive discipline may need to be taken based on failure on the employee’s part to meet the required goals for their job and/or the improved behaviors.
  5. If the employee is willing, but still not performing to the level of their peers, then they may lack the capacity to be a top performer. That would indicate either a bad hire on the Manager’s part or a need to compensate for the gap in order to comply with ADA requirements.
  6. If the employee lacks knowledge or skill they will need to be trained. Training is the most resource-intensive solution to performance problems, yet it is often the first (and sometimes only) solution that companies pursue. But training will only help an employee increase knowledge and skill, both of which they very well might already have.

As a strategic human capital management professional you should ensure that your company leaders understand this model and use it to diagnose performance gaps. Managers are responsible for making certain that employees have the information that they need, the tools required to do the job, proper incentive to do the right thing the right way at the right time, and the access to solutions that will help the employee succeed (discipline, aids, and training).

See also

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Factors Affecting Willingness and Ability


Factors Affecting Willingness

Factors Affecting Ability

Opportunity for Advancement

Career Path


Job Design/ Learn New Skills

Personal Traits & Interest

Knowledge & Skill Mastery

Company Management

Engaged Heart

Engaged Mind

Based on the previous blogs, this chart models the impact that the three key retention factors have on employees. If they do not have an opportunity to advance then they will not be as inspired to work their hardest. If their job is not designed to take advantage of their interests then they will not be as willing to do the work well. Company management must engage the employees' hearts (to increase the employees' willingness) and minds (to increase the employees' abilities).

They Stay or Resign Because of the Leaders

Because it is in both the top three reasons that employees stay and leave, opportunities for advancement are critical to manage. Employees are more willing to be engaged when they understand and can participate in managing their own career path. Employees who have high performance ratings are able to take advantage of lateral moves and promotions. Managers should also be aware of external barriers to performance that can rob employees of the ability to perform and increase their frustration. Leaders who engage their direct reports in the employee development processes help their reports create and manage their own careers. Leaders who leverage situational leadership skills drive superior performance, which creates more opportunities for their high performing direct reports.

Engaged employees are more likely to join your company and then stay if they have challenging work that allows them to test and develop new competencies. Competencies affecting commitment include those that are interpersonal and intrapersonal in nature, including the ability to learn (which is a strong predictor of future leadership potential). Competencies that affect capability include knowledge, technical skills, and ability.

According to every contemporary piece of research on why great performers become disengaged and leave companies the number one reason is consistently a bad boss. Leaders that engage the hearts and minds of their direct reports keep their top talent or help their best employees move up the organization. They engage their direct reports’ hearts by building a sense of deeper purpose, building relationships amongst team members, and appreciating both what was done and how it was done. They engage their direct reports’ minds by providing autonomous work environment in which each employee can take credit for his/her own success.

Why Employees Stay, Why Employees Resign

What attracts and retains employees?
79% stay because of opportunities for advancement
69% stay because their job is redesigned
65% stay because they are learning new skills in their current job

Why do employees resign?
56% leave because they are dissatisfied with company management
56% leave due to inadequate opportunity for advancement
50% leave due to dissatisfaction with pay
“Strategic Rewards” by Watson Wyatt, 1999

Friday, January 11, 2008

Employee Referral Programs

Pro: Top performers should bring in other top performers because birds of a feather flock together.
Con: Not everyone is a top performer. Top performers may be unwilling to refer others because it would reflect poorly on them to bring in a poor performer. Poor performers will refer a lot of people just for a little extra money or to surround themselves with their friends at work.
Strategy: Ensure that employees know that anyone who gets referred is a reflection of the employee who made the referral. Actively request referrals from your top performers, especially when there is a specific opening you want them to help you fill. You may want to provide some meaningful financial incentive if a referred candidate is chosen and stays with the company for more than 90 days. If that same new hire is rated as a top performer at the end of the year you should give the referring employee an additional bonus.

What the Web Says to Your Recruits

Any candidate that is worth considering should be Googling your company. What will they run into? (You better run that query right now yourself to find out.)
  • Is your company the first link (below the sponsors) when the query is run? If not, why not? If the candidate is a top performer then she or he is in high demand and will want to go to a company that is legitimate. Not being the first link when your own company name is Googled starts to raise some questions that you will not be given the opportunity to answer.
  • What are 3rd party sites (e.g. blogs) saying about you? If a potential customer has ever asked about you in an industry-related weblog then your potential hires are going to see what people have said about your company. It may not be fair if competitors have posted some of the answers, but that is the reality you are faced with. Dig at least ten search results pages deep and click through each link to see what threaded discussions include your name and how this reflects on your company. If you find dirt, you should create a plan to tackle that dirt. You might also want to create a strategy to mitigate future dirt.
  • What are your employees writing about you? These are the search results that potential employees are going to give the most credence to. If you have poor management in place you will definitely want to scour the web for opinions on those people. If you are serious about attracting the absolute best people to work at your company or on your team... manage the bad leaders out or help them improve IMMEDIATELY.
  • Many people indicate who their employer is on their social networking page (e.g. LinkedIn or FaceBook). What type of people they are in the outside world may become transparent on those pages and affect how a candidate views your entire workforce. Again, it is just a reality that people have lives away from work and are allowed to do all sorts of fascinating things and have all sorts of unique interests, just hope that those things are all legal and not too divisive.
  • Finally, has any unscrupulous blogger or webmaster included your company's name on a webpage that is just looking for some easy money via pay-per-click advertising? I have worked for companies that found their name on pages that were covered with links to all sorts of explicit materials. Set up a Google daily news alert with your company's name to see where your name pops up and report those sorts of false pages immediately. I have always found that and other are very quick to take those pages down.

There are obvious steps that you can take to present the benefits of working for your company. Have a great website with at least one page devoted to educating potential employees about some of those benefits. Give candidates a sense of 'a day in the life' of an employee in the job that they are interested in. Make the first two steps in the application process extremely easy and intuitive. Treat each candidate as if they are a potentially lucrative customer. Be polite, responsive, and appreciative of the applicant's time. Encourage employees who love working for you to spread the word. Be vigilant and act on negative press immediately.

Why do I end up hiring poor performers?

Resume writers write great fiction.
Interviews are a superficial and biased selection tool.
Candidates only let you see what they want you to see.
Performance is one organization does not often translate to another.
You focus on fit for the job and ignore fit for the culture.

Why Can't I Find Top Performers?

Top performers have lots of options.
There are very few really great employees.
Top performers are not looking for a new job (unless they are starting their own company).
Top performers want to be with winning companies and surrounded by other top performers and supported by great leaders. Is that your reputation?