7 ways to learn what employees are really thinking

Wouldn’t you just love to get inside your employees’ heads? Wouldn’t it be great to know what your employees are really thinking about you - and the place they work for? A company called TinyPulse has developed a great way to get pretty close to doing just that. Using an anonymous email format, TinyPulse polls its employees once a week with probing, open-ended questions. They are … [Read more...]

The key to retention: Creating a good job fit

You may have come across these words of wisdom at some point: Never teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and it annoys the heck out of the pig. You've got to love that quote, as it says all there is to know about someone being a good fit for the job. Perhaps more than any other aspect, trait or quality, employee retention hinges on a good job fit. But what does it really mean when … [Read more...]

6 etiquette blunders that can slip off the tongue

As a manager you've been warned that people are always watching. So no matter how gifted your operational skills, you don’t want to lose respect by making etiquette blunders that offend - or worse. Here are six things that can roll off a manager's tongue before the brain can stop them. No offense, but ...” If anyone has to start a sentence with, “No offense ...” then the sentence should … [Read more...]

Manager gives meaningful performance reviews: 1-2-3-4-5 (Circle one)

Why is it that the current, clunky version of the dreaded annual performance review has stuck around so long? You know the style: Facilitates team communication: 1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5 (Circle one). Manager to self: Um, how about 3? You can't go wrong with average. It’s safer, right? Then, 3 it is. The lack of meaningful performance reviews is so pervasive because companies are too lazy to … [Read more...]

ManageElite adds new modules for 2nd anniversary

ManageElite, the most affordable, easy-to-use, innovative training program for managers, celebrated its second birthday and is now adding new training modules. "In the past two years, we've helped thousands become better managers -- whether they were first-time managers or experienced pros. I hear it in the feedback I get from them every day," says John Walston, ManageElite's VP/Product … [Read more...]

iQuiz: Leadership Trivia No. 5 – Before They Were Famous

What do you really know about the leaders whose names pop up in the headlines all the time? You know the ones. Warren Buffett, Elizabeth Warren, Richard Branson, Sonia Sotomayor, Mitt Romney and more. They’re rich, they’re tough, they’re smart, etc. But what do you know about them before they became famous? This Leadership Trivia quiz looks back at them before anyone really heard of them. We … [Read more...]

5 reasons why you might not be the boss after all

Quick question: Can you hire or fire someone? Yes or no? (Don’t be shy. More than 1 in 4 middle managers said in a recent ManageElite poll that they can’t fire people! More poll results further down.) The question is meant not so much to test of your managerial prowess. But it does offer a look at how vulnerable your organization would be if an employee accused you of … [Read more...]

Discussing pay raises: Some dos and don’ts

Conversations about pay raises essentially boil down to four types. Those in which the employee is getting: - a larger-than-average raise - an average raise - a smaller-than-average raise - no raise at all. Here are time-tested examples of how managers should – and shouldn’t – go about discussing pay raises. The larger-than-average raise The wrong way: “Well, Helen, you pretty much did … [Read more...]

The truth about bullying: It’s rarely obvious

By now most people have seen (or heard of) the video of Rutgers University ex-basketball coach Mike Rice Jr. abusing his players. He beans them with basketballs, shoves them around, calls them names and belittles their skills in front of others. Lovely! Thankfully, Rice was dismissed. But for those of us who concern ourselves with sound management practices, we are left to wonder: Why do so … [Read more...]

Use these employee engagement tactics at your own risk

Did you know just one of every three employees feel engaged at work? That’s what many Gallup polls say. Just one-in-three. If you were managing a baseball team, one in three would be a great batting average. You’d be unbeatable. But we’re not playing baseball. We’re playing work, and frankly, one in three stinks. One in three leaves so much room for improvement that it can only be … [Read more...]