I would like to post something that I did not write but would like you all to read:
"Cinderella, a mud-shy piglet, was shod with four galoshes so she could overcome her fear and carry out her daily piggy responsibilities of wallowing and rolling. Cinders' owners were initially perplexed by the pig's reluctance to act like a pig, but
keen observation eventually led them to realize she was afflicted with mysophobia — fear of dirt. The solution was to outfit her with a set of boots, get them on her and convince her to trot in the muck with her siblings.
The story illustrates the compassion shown to Cinders by her sausage-making owners, and there are also parallels to how to help others achieve their best.
Not to equate staff with swine, but a boots-wearing pig can serve as a reminder to pay attention, provide resources and coach others. Just as Cinderella couldn't communicate her mud-phobia, workers are typically reticent about vocalizing
their need for help. Noticing a colleague's struggle before it reaches elevated proportions can often mean the difference between success and failure.
Once there is recognition, assess which resources are needed to move toward a solution. Will additional training, staffing, technology — or boots — help achieve the goal? Identify and then coach through the problem-solving or implementation
process. The situation will be rectified; the colleague will have strengthened some individual characteristics; and rather than form resentments or miss deadlines, the team will coalesce through the coaching experience.
According to the survey of 1,597 employed executives with an average annual salary of more than
$206,000, 61 percent report they are satisfied or very satisfied with their current job, up significantly
from 52 percent one year ago. Among the 39 percent of corporate leaders not happy at work,
boredom and a lack of advancement are the most frequently cited sources.
While more executives are happier with their job, the survey revealed that satisfaction levels vary
considerably across professions:
Profession Percentage of ExecutivesSatisfied With Current Job
General Management 61%
Across all functions, the top reasons executives are dissatisfied with their current jobs include:
1. Limited advancement opportunities
2. Lack of challenge/personal growth
4. Stress level
4. (tied) Job security
"While stress and job security concerns are mounting, boredom and a shortage of opportunities for
advancement remain key drivers of voluntary executive turnover...Given the current outlook for the executive employment market, companies capable of
keeping their leaders engaged will be well-positioned for sustained growth."
2008 Chief Executive of the Year
If Xerox could duplicate leadership like they do images, they need look no further than their current
CEO, Anne Mulcahy, who was selected by her peers for Chief Executive magazine's annual honor.
Called "The Accidental CEO" by FORTUNE, Mulcahy rose up in the Xerox ranks through first the sales
and then the human resources functions to shepherd the company toward an expected $18 billion in
annual revenue in 2008. Once deeply in debt and under the shadow of a suspected accounting
scandal, Mulcahy credits a strong team, increased R&D spending and improved customer relations
for Xerox's march toward brand fortification and profit.
"We needed customer relationships that were more value-oriented than transaction-oriented," says
Mulcahy. "By 2005, when customers recognized that we were building relationships, our story in
their eyes started to change and that clearly was an important milestone for us, because we knew
we could sustain the future."
The Brazen Careerist
If your college-age kids' attitudes and the work habits of your younger employees seem foreign,
you're not alone. Generation Y is moving up in the professional world; and they are bringing a new
set of ideals, values, tech tools and perspectives that may upset the status quo.
Penelope Trunk, author, blogger and Boston Globe columnist, shares her insight on the generational
differences shaping the workspace on The Brazen Careerist. But be forewarned that you never know
what to expect on Trunk's blog: part career advice, part entrepreneurialism, part marketing, part
techy, and many times personal, controversial and opinionated, she writes as if the filter is off and
seemingly without regard to the reactions in the comments section. I heard her speak at ERE Expo
(Electronic Recruiting Exchange) in San Diego earlier this year, and found that her strong
commentary was not limited to her persona behind the keyboard.
If there are 20-somethings in your office or in your life, Trunk's 10 Reasons Why Generation Y's
Conservatism is Mistaken for Craziness might help you cope:
1. More than 60 percent of Generation Y go back home to their parents after college. If they go
home with their parents and give themselves a buffer, the more likely they will find a job that
is suitable for them. They are willing to trade freedom for a great job.
2. Those between the ages 18 and 32 change jobs every 18 months. Job hopping makes them
more engaged, because they are always trying something new. It keeps the learning curve
high, increases their skill set and grows their network.
3. They have no loyalty to a company, but they have a lot of loyalty to the project they are on.
If you are a good manager, they will be loyal to you.
4. They ignore school. They think getting good grades doesn't help them and good grades are
not relevant to school. They may not be reading great literature, but 80 percent are getting
5. Entrepreneurship is a safety net for them. If they hate their job, they think they can start a company in their parent's basement.
6. They won't take entry-level work. Don't have them do stupid, meaningless work to climb the
ladder, because there are no ladders anymore. There's no reason to pay your dues if you are
7. They want to leave work early a lot and use family as a justification. They will ask you,
"Don't you think family is more important than work?" Workplaces talk about family being
important; but if the company doesn't support their family needs, Generation Y thinks work is
lying to them.
8. They demand non-hierarchical structures, and they think everyone is a team. Everyone plays
on the soccer team, even if they don't play well. They think anyone should hear their ideas —
even the CEO.
9. Generation Y demands constant feedback. They want to be told they are doing well and not
doing well in a delicate way. They want everyone to know that they are great. They want
mentors and to be helped and that can only happen with feedback.
10. Baby Boomers stage a protest and sign petitions when they don't like something, but Gen Y is conservative. They don't protest, they just leave. Be honest with them, and they will tell you what they need and what engages them. They put everything on the table and expect
you to do the same."
There is some good mixed message's in the above, and I hope they give some help.