Is Your Company/Community a Poaching Ground?

You've just had the manager's dream come true.  Someone, maybe a resident, came in to your office asking if you have an open position for a job and they're just perfect to be your next leasing consultant.  They are bubbly.  They're professional.  They own more than one suit.  And you DO have that open position.

It means you don't have to call a staffing company and you get to save some moolah on your budget.  This is, by far, a happy day.

They don't know what they're really worth (This day just keeps getting better!) so you are going to start them at $11 an hour until they "get their feet wet," and you'll "talk about that raise," at their 90 day review.  You also mention to them how they'll make commissions, so it offsets the lower starting wage.

Fast Forward: They've found a good comfortable home with your company and they are really learning fast. They seem to be a happy employee.  You send them to just about every training that comes across your plate and they are mastering all the skills, learning new ones, making connections and growing so well with your company.  Your company has a great training program and a great regional trainer, so it's no surprise that your fresh faced super leaser is just off the charts. 

And he/she's still only making that $11 an hour.  The economy went a little downhill, or maybe something else changed, and even though your occupancy is high, partly due to the enormous efforts of that new rockstar  leasing agent, you just can't raise their pay right now, but you will "revisit the issue," with them in a few months.  After all, they did do a great job and got all that commission pay for the ton of apartments they leased, so they shouldn't really care about that extra 1 or 2 dollar raise right now... Or, maybe it's not you, but your company, that said the raise won't be happening.  Either way, say bye bye to your new rockstar, the one you found and mentored and trained and invested so much in.

They're now the newest meat in the poaching field for your competitors.  And your competitors know just where to find them.

I know of several companies who are reputed to be "poaching grounds" for great new employees because they train the heck out of their people and don't pay them either what they were promised when they were promised it OR what they're really worth.  Then they compound that by withholding any sort of real and genuine, not to mention DESERVED, recognition or praise for their employees, instead, making them feel like they can't do anything right, and what does that leave them with?  An entire ship full of rats waiting to jump for the first piece of good looking cheese that comes along.

And there is some pretty good looking cheese out there, let me tell you.

Do you work for one of these companies?   Or are you a manager who's been guilty of overlooking praise worthiness in your staff?  Do you focus only on the 1 thing goes wrong and overlook the 99 things that went right that day?  If this employee leaves, do you not even worry because you know they're all just like Kleenex and another one will blow through your door?  Your employees will not last.  Studies have shown that workers would rather have recognition and praise, GENUINE and SPECIFIC recognition and praise, over anything else in their jobs.  Since math is the universal language, the basic equations for this I think will look a little like these:

Good work environment + lower to mid level pay + skills and training = A happier and more consistent employee

Harsh work environment + Great pay +Skills and training = You'll keep them for a while at least because you're paying them enough to put up with the emotional strain but eventually they're going to go to someone who can show appreciation.

Harsh work environment + Crappy pay + Skills and training = You need to call a staffing agent because no one will want to work for you

Have I been reading too much of "The 24-Carrot Manager?"   Quite possibly, but it doesn't lessen my argument in the slightest.  If you can't afford the raise that employee deserves, or even if you don't want to give it to them, you had better hedge your bets by being great with praise when it's deserved.

If you can't do that... You know where to reach me.  But the first option is certainly cheaper, and who knows... maybe if you try it, you'll like it.  Eat Your Vegetables!  (And buy that book! It's terrific!)

Just a bit of info on some "Fur-esidents" I bet you didn't know you had

"Clean for a day" - A Renewal Idea and a Relationship Tip