I have question. Well, actually more than just one question. And I'm going to need your help. You might have all or part of the answer. Well, maybe more a solution than an answer. So, I would like to start a discussion on the Shaker Blog with you



I have question. Well, actually more than just one question. And I'm going to need your help. You might have all or part of the answer. Well, maybe more a solution than an answer. So, I would like to start a discussion on the Shaker Blog with your ideas, concerns and suggestions making a major contribution to the dialogue. First, here's what has me thinking and somewhat worried. U.S. worker productivity surged in the second quarter at a 6.4% annualized rate, the best showing in almost six years. That is good news. But the equation to determine productivity does include decreasing employee numbers. Nevertheless, even with layoffs and attrition as part of this economic equation, I believe of utmost importance is how an employer increases "e;actual"e; production out of fewer people versus just squeezing out some short-term profitability, as well as how an employer implements short and long-term plans for sustaining and increasing further productivity through proper acquisition and management of new employees. But before you can start hiring again, you need to clearly document that you have achieved maximum productivity from your current workforce. One means toward achieving enhanced productivity is through appropriate employee motivation and communication. During these unstable and insecure times companies which inform employees how they plan to respond to an expanding economy, even if their portion of market growth is only expanding slightly at this time or has not yet begun to expand, will benefit through increased worker engagement and long-term loyalty. To retain your best staff as the economy turns around and job opportunities begin to increase, you need to communicate your plan and motivate your staff. Sometimes it goes beyond motivation. You need to inspire your workers with the kind of communication Jack Welch recently discussed at the SHRM conference in New Orleans. He said your internal employee communication "e;...needs to be vibrant."e; If you don't see your own productivity numbers corresponding to the government statistics, you need to look at maximizing your ability to communicate with your current employees and possibly exploring a means to recruit superior candidates to join your workforce. For example, economists at Nomura Securities noticed a deviation in the productivity trends in the manufacturing-sector. After falling for four consecutive quarters, productivity in manufacturing jumped at a 5.3% rate in the second quarter. Their report said, "e;The unusually sharp drop in manufacturing productivity and apparent early rebound suggests that manufacturers had reversed their usual pattern of laying off the least productive workers first. These data instead suggest that the more productive workers were dismissed early. This behavioral oddity seems to validate the notion that businesses have accelerated structural downsizing perhaps through early retirement programs for more experienced and presumably more productive workers."e; So my concern and question to HR professionals: Is your company currently performing at the level of productivity that you need to achieve and maintain your position within your industry? If so, can you share with all of us some of the strategies and tactics you are contributing to your success? And to those who find they are not meeting their productivity goals, let me know what are your challenges and objectives. My goal is to start a discussion right here on how to contribute increasing productivity and profitability for each of your companies. By sharing, we might make our own small contribution to the overall upturn in the domestic as well as global economy. No ordinary task, but these are not ordinary times.

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