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 There is no excuse


for employee excuses. 

     Let’s face it, Boss.  The more you run around trying to be a first aid squad patching up the business cuts and bruises and blackeyes, the more you function as a fire department blanketing flames and hosing down everything in sight, the more you lose control.

     When employees appear to be invested in offering excuses, and in maintaining the status quo so they don’t make waves, the less they are living up to their potential and the more your business will suffer on the bottom line.

     So what’s a Boss to do?  Step back from it all.  Take a couple of deep breaths.  Recognize that you have been taking the monkey off employee backs for too long and that it’s time to put the monkey back where it belongs . . . return it to those you are paying to take and manage responsibility.  

     There is no excuse for excuses.  And when employees can duck responsibility and not miss a step, they will.  Why not?  They’ll get paid as much for making the minimal 9-5 effort as they will for acting more responsible and putting in extra effort and extra hours.  (Does this sound something like being a parent?) 

     If you’re expecting employees to step up and act like owners, you’d better figure out some way to make them feel like owners . . . whether it’s a matter of stock options, or junior partnerships, or simply extending some vacation times, or awarding some bonuses, people are people are people.  Incentives motivate. 

     Ah, you say, but you’ve tried giving salary raises and it hasn’t changed things.  How can you fault someone for not wanting to do more work once she or he is making more pay when it’s just as easy to go into cruise control?  On top of that, remember that pay raises are permanent increases.  By comparison, bonuses and non-cash rewards are blips on your bottom line.

     If you’re determined to get results from incentives, you have to be determined to figure out what makes each individual incentive recipient tick! 

     Someone with a teenager who needs braces will be more motivated by your incentive offer to pay the periodontist than a cruise vacation.  Someone who comes from a wealthy family will not be as motivated by cash as by a limo-transported theatre show and dinner for two (or four) at his or her favorite restaurant. 

     An employee who’s nervous and worried about neighborhood burglaries will be motivated by a one-time expense security system installation and service contract or a new, bolt-to-the-floor fire-proof safe. 

     It’s all about Maslow’s Hierarchy and understanding as much as you can about what’s important in the life of each person, and rewarding that individual at the level that counts most for that person.           halalpiar         

For experienced bottom-line management consulting and coaching that gets results –guaranteed– contact award-winning author/educator/consultant Hal Alpiar now at 302.933.0116 or email

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