The ROI for technology is in how it benefits those who use it. Whether Amazon’s tech that drives their mail order business, or the Electronic Medical Record systems hospitals use to keep track of our health data, the ROI is how well the user takes advantage of the technology.
The ROI for leadership is making all this happen every day so you can get the results you want.
Case Study #1
Leadership and Staff Performance Development
The Pharma division of Chicago-based company has a group called Medical Safety. One of their functions is a review of every adverse reaction any person has to any drug they sell no matter where in the world it happens. All adverse reactions, divided into serious and non-serious cases, must be reported to the FDA, and to the regulatory body of the country where the reaction occurred. These reports must be filed within 4-6 days of learning of the reaction, depending on the country. All reports pass through an internal audit process that identifies defects in the reporting — thus an accurate record is available to document the performance of all employees. The company uses over 150 nurses and pharmacists to perform these reviews. New people are placed in a training program for 5 weeks then put in the field working with mentors — more highly trained and experienced nurses or pharmacists, often members of leadership, to whom they were assigned.
Problems developed in this program and were identified by the company as the following:
- 70% of new people left the company within 15 months of hire. These positions cost $125,000 salary and benefit minimum depending on experience, training, etc.
- Exit interviews included the comment that they were never trained well enough to do the work properly the way both they and the company needed
- Mentors in the field had to spend more time teaching technique and method than they had available while still being held accountable for their own work
- The approach of the mentors varied greatly from being highly engaged to using the “sink or swim” method
- New employees who worked with mentors who spent enough time had more longevity than their less fortunate counterparts. The difference was not enough to prevent the turnover in staff
What we did
- Attended the training program to learn first hand the what and how people were being trained
- Did field observations with the mentors to record what they had to deal with, teach, and compensate for in the performance levels of the graduates of the training program
- Helped redesign the training program to fit what the mentors had time and expertise to teach in the field
- Taught the Mentors how to deliver their training in the field
- Turnover dropped to 20% after 15 months
- Mentor satisfaction increased significantly
- New staff came into the field better prepared
- Both training staff and mentors were better prepared to continue the development of new people
- The cost of diverting higher performing human capital to rescue, redo, or compensate for those improperly trained was reduced significantly.
Case Study #2
Keeping young talent in the organization
An engineering firm hires new graduates from the best schools in the country. These individuals, men and women, are considered the future leaders of the company and are expected to grow and develop into these types of positions. The company reports that roughly 70% of these new hires are leaving the company within 2 years of hire. Originally the firm thought this was just the Millennial Effect of young people moving jobs with greater frequency than previous generations.
We suggested that some field research, akin to what they do in their engineering work, might confirm that suspicion. After visits to six field offices (they have 10), we reported the following:
- If the new engineer was placed in 3 of these offices, the turnover rate was below 10%
- If that same new hire was placed in one of the other three locations, the turnover rate was near 90% with people leaving within two years
- The number one reason people cited for leaving — they were not trained to do the work, improve their skills, and grow in responsibility and significance associated with the work they were asked to do
- The more capability was improved in these new hires, the more responsibility they were given because they became more capable, the more likely they were to stay with the company
The differences among and between offices was in the managers to whom these individuals report. Managers who acted like The Mentor, helping people learn and develop, expand their capabilities while growing in the scope and importance of the work they were asked to do had greater retention and engagement from these young engineers.
Managers who did not see their job as development of others, and often did not know how to be that type of leader suffered the greatest levels of turnover.
What we did:
- We organized a pilot program to deliver The Mentor Series™ to 8 managers and 8 young newly hired engineers (between 6 and 12 months with the company).
- Delivered The Mentor Series™ program to the managers
- Provided mentoring support to both the managers and the staff engineers
- Surveyed the participants at the close of the pilot (7 months)
- We lost 2 staff engineers in the pilot study (out of 8), one to relocation and the other because they did not like the engineering work the company did for its clients.
- The remaining staff engineers have seen increased development of their skills and expansion in the scope and importance of the work they do
- They are learning how to prepare and price proposals, manage budgets, and engage with the customer.
- One engineer who had announced they would leave remained with the company
The results are so encouraging the company has contracted for three more groups of leaders and staff engineers to participate in our program.
Take Control Of Your Business
- Websites and the traffic they generate are only the first step towards the ROI. The remaining steps are most often in the hands of people. So we assess how well the people and processes that come after the website make the most of the opportunities.
- Leadership plays a powerful role in developing a capable workforce. We teach leadership how to be The Mentor and drive development and performance
- Leadership development programs too often fail at their most important goal — creating leaders who are more capable to deliver results. We teach management how to be The Mentor and help translate what people learn into something useful for them and the organization
Have a conversation with us so you can teach us what you face in your organization and how we might help you get the results you want.
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