Dealing with the top employee issues of 2016

January 8, 2016 | Iowa Caucuses: Top issues facing businesses Todd McDonald, ATW Training Solutions,

Leadership is never easy, and as we enter 2016, we need to remember that each new year brings its own new set of special challenges. 2016 won’t be any different. In no priority order, I offer five employee issues that you should have on your radar for 2016.

  1. Hire them if you can find them! 
With unemployment in Iowa at an all-time low, it is a seller’s market when it comes to hiring great people. If you need to hire people for your team, be prepared to look in unconventional places and be ready to make a decision quickly, because great people won’t be on the market for long.
  2. Put the “success” back into your succession planning. 
It’s time to get serious about succession planning. With record numbers of employees retiring daily, it’s no longer acceptable to talk about creating a succession plan; it’s time to make it happen. If this isn’t a key goal for someone in your organization, make it one.
  3. Caution--Digital Natives Ahead! 
While retiring baby boomers are causing one challenge (succession planning), the new generation of digital natives (those who are Internet natives) present even different challenges. How do we recruit, develop and engage them in our workplace? Old rules won’t apply to this new generation of employees. Take a moment to learn about them, because they are your future.
  4. “Skill up” your employees with on-the-job opportunities. 
You’ve heard the saying, hire for attitude and train for skills. Keep in mind that getting someone hired is just the first step to helping them succeed. Skilling up employees will be a critical success factor for them and your organization. You might consider partnering a seasoned, skilled worker who can teach the skills of that particular craft to new workers. When these programs are in place, there is a better opportunity to develop high-quality, skilled team members. Plus, it’s a great opportunity for employees to “earn as they learn.” Providing opportunities to learn on the job is a real incentive to recruit and retain new talent.
  5. Establish a culture where time AND accountability are valued. 
Time is a limited resource. We need to make sure that all employees are focused on the most important thing they should be doing. We as leaders must hold others (and ourselves) accountable for results. It’s never been more important than now to make the most of our time. Remember, you can’t manage time, but you can manage how you use that time. And if someone isn’t, hold them account- able. Take control of your time; don’t let it control you.

These are just five items that you might want to be considering. You probably have even more. Identify them, plan for them, take action and succeed!