How To Take Advantage of the Emerging Recovery - Gainsharing Inc.

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How To Take Advantage of the Emerging Recovery

Are you going to miss the opportunities the recovery will bring?

You may have slacked off on training people, let people go that had important skills, and/or are spread pretty thin in key areas that need to "come through" for your customers as demand picks up.

Now that things are turning around economically, if we don't get organized, we'll miss the opportunities that come our way.

There are some "classic", predictable problems you're likely to have. Let's go through some of these "pot holes" you want to avoid:

1. Don't Know What the Challenge is.

What Do You Want?


Could you write it down for me?

If we had terrific performance as the work demands increase, what would that look like? Could you describe it in detail for me?

Would your employees have the same answer as you?

Paul Meyer, founder of the Success Motivation Institute, once stated that,

"If you are not achieving what you think you should in life, it's because your goals are not well defined enough."

Do we want to:
- Shorten our cycle time?
- Improve quality levels?
- Improve labor productivity?
- All of these?
- Something different?

What is the most important focus as the "pace" increases?

You can't hit a target you can't see.

2. Going in Different Directions

Your employees lost their overtime pay when business slowed down, didn't they?

Do you think they're expecting overtime pay to return now as things get busier?

When they think about the good things that will come with the recovery, do you think they are thinking, "Bring back the OT pay"?

Are your employees hoping to get their overtime back, while you're hoping that we can pick up the pace and get the extra work done during the 40 hour work week?

You're planning to pull the rope one way. They're planning to pull it the other way.

How are we going to get everyone pulling in the same direction? (I have an answer for that.)

3. Do We Measure What's Important?

Measurement gives focus.

It's the centerpiece of analysis, communication, feedback. Without measurement, how would we know if we're getting off track?

If I held in my hand, an envelope with an in-depth rating of your job performance, would you want to see it? Of course you would!

People are inherently curious. They want to know how they're doing. This is a powerful, critical force to manage and lead.

When you put measures in their workspace, you get these dynamics working for you.

They'll also go to extremes to protect their self-esteem.

So if you're measuring their performance, they want to know what you're finding. Is this info a threat to them? Does it make them look bad? Will others know how the measurements turned out?

Even if we know what we want (what success looks like), if we don't measure, things fall apart.

4. Don't' Know Customer's Priorities

If you have new business opportunities (even new customers) now, are the customers' priorities clearly communicated throughout your company?

The customers clearly know what's important to them and they're probably "trying you out" to see if you can deliver what they need.

Your employees will probably find it interesting to hear about details about the customer, what they are looking for, why this order is so important to them. Laying out this "story" is critical to getting the emotional involvement you want from you employees.

Similarly, I heard an English military man talking about the differences between English and American soldiers. He said

"When you tell a European soldier what do to, he does it. An American soldier needs a reason, because this fight is his fight."

Immersing your employees in your customers' priorities and how you are part of their "success plans," makes this their "fight". Your employees crave and need this involvement in the "big picture".

You want to get this dynamic going for you.

5. Don't Get Anything Out of It

Once the performance begins to improve, it's unavoidable that people will ask "So what do I get out of this"?

Your employees see the company benefiting financially (or they think that it is), so this becomes a fairness issue.

If they are consistently giving that "extra performance," it seems fair that the company should provide "something extra" for them.

Of course, you want to have rewards tied to hitting the company goals. But how do you do this correctly? What do you include, leave out, and how should you structure the whole thing?

It's important that bonuses track with the bottom-line. When this is put together correctly, it's really comes a powerful feedback tool to focus performance throughout the company.

Your Gainsharing System provides a consistent method to provide, focus, information, measurement, analysis and feedback.

The discipline Gainsharing is very powerful. As Tim Gase, President of Peerless Saw in Groveport, Ohio once told me,

"Gainsharing requires that his managers get together once a week and review, what was suppose to happen and what actually happened, whether they feel like it, or have time for it or not."

Through your Gainsharing System, you will be communicating the
- Current Challenges,
- Who is going to do what by when to achieve the Goals,
- How we are doing on our Measures,
- Performance on our Customers' Priorities, and
- What we need to do to drive our Gainsharing Bonuses.

Whenever you’re ready . . . here are six ways we can help you:

1. Gainsharing Executive Briefing DVD
This free DVD gives a quick primer on Gainsharing and its “must have” features. It was created by a television producer and includes on-site interviews with actual Gainsharing users. Click here to request your free copy.

2. Gainsharing BluePrint
Answers the question “How could this be applied in my Company?” Outlines both the formula and “Boots on the Ground” connection fundamentals required for an effective Gainsharing system. Click here to request more info.

3. “40 Minutes to a 5 to 15% Productivity Improvement” Webinar
Learn how to motivate employees and give them “skin in the game” to drive results. Click here for direct access.

4. Invite me to speak for your group or trade organization
I would be pleased to serve your trade organization or other groups as a speaker. Click here to email me about your opportunity.

5. In-person, on-site presentation at your company
Let’s put a presentation together for your Management Team and others. It’s an ideal way to explore how Gainsharing applies to your specific circumstances without the cost or inconvenience of travel for your people. Click here to email me to discuss customizing the presentation for your Company.

6. Webinar for your company
We can also develop a custom webinar presentation for your company. This makes it easy to get a quick overview using technology to maximize convenience. Click here to email me to request more info.

You can also send your questions to or call 317-371-1021.

About the Author:

Dr. Charles (Chuck) DeBettignies is an author, speaker, seminar leader, Gainsharing expert, and founder of Gainsharing Inc.

His company implements Gainsharing processes to motivate employees to pursue great performance with a performance-based pay reward system that leads to an improved bottom-line at the same time.

Many companies say it's the single best thing they ever implemented for both their company and employees.

Gainsharing Inc. specializes in Gainsharing Systems, and offers design, implementation, and assistance to drive impressive, lasting success.

Gainsharing Inc.
P.O. Box 501548
Indianapolis, IN 46250

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