Today on Clay Staires Leadership Tulsa podcast, I’m going to be talking about how to evaluate employees on a daily basis. I had a client that came to me just this last week that was in a place of, they do a monthly — each month they put everybody’s numbers up on the board to see how everyone’s doing. This one employee they found over and over and over just wasn’t quite meeting the mark. They weren’t too far off to where they could just fire them, but they were just not really hitting the mark each month.
They were going, “Clay what do I do about this?” Their big question was, “Man, how do I do this? How do I light a fire on to them? How do I get them to a place where they need to be?” That’s when I asked them, “So how often do you guys have meetings?” “Well, about once a month is when we look at the numbers and have that evaluation.”
When we change that, I began to speak to this business speaker Tulsa leader about how to put together a system, a process that will allow you to evaluate your employees on a daily basis. It’s a wonderful thing. From my experience as the head of Clay Staires Leadership Tulsa, I have found that my employees need a touch point from me every single day, to know if they are on track. It’s like when you’re driving down the road, in your car, and there’s constant adjustments that you’re making with the wheel to keep you within the lines.
If you don’t make these constant adjustments as you’re going, you either going to find yourself over an oncoming traffic, and that metaphor would be just crazy life, crazy things going on at work. Who knows what’s happening were just all over the board or we find ourselves in the other direction in the ditch. Again, metaphor there is business speaker Tulsa has stuck, business speaker Tulsa has just become stagnant.
What we want to do is we want to help our employees stay within the boundaries. The tool that I use is what I call the four Es. It comes from — oh, brain fart. Okay. The tool that I use is called the four Es, it comes from Jack Welch, the leader of GE for years and years, grew that company. Actually, while he was the leader, grew that company 4,000%. What I want to do is go through and give you some practical points and some practical experiences and steps you can take to talk with your employees on a daily basis.
Again, keep in mind this is not sitting down and having a sit-down meeting with people. There’s no forms involved this is not an official evaluation. It’s just a five-second, 10-second conversation with your employees as you go through the day. I want to identify the four Es, explain each one of them and then I want to give you examples of how you, in your office as a leader, can use these four Es on a daily basis with your employees.
The first E that we have is energy, and this is — the explanation of this, this is just how energized are the people to come to work? What kind of energy, personal energy do they have? Are they excited to be there? Are they happy to be there? Do they have energy? Do they move at a pace or are they sluggish? Showing up to work just in time or showing up late. Do they drag? What’s their body language? Do they come to work and are they excited, or are they there on time? Ready to go? In meetings, do they have energy? Do they have positive input?
Again, this is what we call energy. What we’re going to do on a daily basis is just get this language into your culture, this idea of personal energy. Now once again, if you as a leader do not have high energy, then it’s going to be very hard for you to encourage and for you to get other people to have this energy. Once again, as we talked about with leadership, you can’t lead where you don’t go. You can’t teach what you don’t know, so you’ve got to get there first.
So you’ve got to be the model for high-energy at work. “Oh, but Clay, I didn’t get enough sleep last night.” Then drink coffee, do something to get your energy up, because if you’re not there, you will not be able to get the people there. Number one is the energy and how we evaluate people, how I do this with my employees is, I simply grade them, because I used to be a teacher, I simply grade them on an A to F scale, ABCDF type of thing. Yes, you can definitely have A plus, B plus, B minus and all that stuff.
But just as I’m going through the day, as I see an employee do something when I’m walking across the office, when I’m walking across the manufacturing floor, wherever I am, if I see somebody do something or if I’m in a meeting and I see somebody actually act out of energy, I see somebody that has energy I stop and I tell them, “Hey, great job with the energy. I’m going to give you an A on energy on that one. Fantastic, good job keep that thing up.” Business Speaker Tulsa
But at the same time, if I see somebody that is sluggish, somebody that is yawning, oh that’s a big on, somebody that’s yawning in a meeting, Somebody that’s just moving slowly because I think we all know that success has a pace and somebody that’s just moving slowly throughout the day not getting things done. If I’m listening to their phone calls as they’re making sales calls, as I’m listening to their calls and they are just droning on and on and there’s no change in their voice, I stop them. I say, “Hey, just the energy right now I think is like at a C plus, maybe even a C. Come on now, let’s get this thing up. We need to have it at B plus, A minus. Let’s get this energy up.”
That way, I can simply say energy, they know what I’m talking about. I give them a grade and they know where they are because I’ve added that language into my culture. The idea of energy, get your energy up. You don’t have to go into a long conversation like, “Well, let’s talk about seven ways to increase your energy.” I’m not diving into that level. I’m just saying I see your energy, here’s where I see your energy and I want you to know that I see that’s where your energy is. Business Speaker Tulsa
Because now if they go one day, two day, three day, four day, one week, two week, four week and they are consistently getting graded low in a specific area, now when you bring them to the meeting where you’re going to release them, get them out or you come into an evaluation, there’s no surprise. “So, how have you been doing over the last couple weeks, when I’ve been talking to you about your energy? What have been the normal grades that I’ve a given you?” “Oh, you’ve been given me B’s and C’s.” “Okay, cool. How do you think you’re doing with your energy?” “Hey, I think I’m in A.” “Okay. That’s interesting that you think you’re an A and yet I have been evaluating at Bs and Cs. So which of the two evaluations do you think is most important for you to pay attention to.?” “Yours.” Exactly.
Again, when you are — when you have these touch points on a daily basis, you’re able to keep their energy at the level where you want it to be as opposed to waiting for the weekly meeting, “Come on everybody, our energy’s been down. I’ve noticed it for the last six days.” Oh my gosh, it’s way too long to put up with low energy. You want to be able to capture it immediately and pull them back into a high-energy state.
That brings us to number two, the second E. The second E is energize and energize is simply the ability for an individual to infect other people with their energy. It’s not just you bringing your energy to work, but it’s you actually being able to energize other people. Obviously, this is very important for our employees. Because again if we’re not careful, the natural tendency is for people to pull down into the status quo to just get the job done and that is it. But we want them to keep their energy high, we want them to be moving forward and we want them to be able to energize the environment.
Once again, we evaluate them on an A, B, C, D or F scale, and just as we’re going through the day, again you as a leader as well as your managers, and the team builders that you have, that everybody is fully aware of this language. It’s language that you can use just as you are walking by. I mean you can use it even when you’re having lunch with somebody or if you happen to just be in a certain place at the same time with one of your employees. You can say, “Man your ability to energize, I watched what you did there in that group.” “I was hearing the other day about how you did this and this in this group and the group really responded then it really got the energy going. I just want you to know I’m giving you an A on that, so good job. Keep that going.”
Or, it’s like, “Man when you come into the room, it’s like the energy gets sucked out. I’m going to give you an F today on your energy.” “Yes, I’m sorry man. I just feel really bad.” “Okay, I get that. I get that you feel bad, but this sucking the energy out, we can’t have that. So what can you do? What do you think you can do even in the midst of feeling bad, what do you think you can do to change your ability of energizing your environment?” “Well, I can probably not just drag all the time.” Business Speaker Tulsa
“Exactly, okay. There’s one thing that we want to do is I’m going to hold you accountable for that and we need to get this F. Man, we need to get this up to a C plus, B minus today even though you feel bad. I know normally, when you feel really good, you’re arguing an A. But I get it, you’re feeling bad. Okay, but let’s make sure even when you’re feeling bad that we’re up at that C plus B minus route. Can you do that for me?” “Yes, I guess I can try.” “Okay, good. Try that for me. Let’s see how it goes.”
Then again, it’s a five, ten-second talk. You don’t have to stop. “You know, can I see you in my office for a little bit? You have to stop what you are doing and it interrupts the flow and the pace of the day.” Just do it as you go, every single day. These are two of the four Es from Jack Welch that will help you get to a place where you are able to evaluate and keep the pace as you’re moving forward with your team.
This is my perspective as the founder of Clay Staires of Leadership Tulsa. This is my perspective and how I energize on a consistent daily basis, how I energize my team.
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Clay Staires