Dealing with serial sickies

The classic ‘sickie’. It’s part of New Zealand working folklore, and while most people can honestly admit to ‘chucking’ the occasional sickie, others can stretch the limits of their employers by frequently taking sick days for vague or elusive reasons. In some cases it can get to the point where they are no longer reliably showing up to work.

Sick leave is a legitimate entitlement, and many people genuinely need that time to manage their health or chronic conditions — both mental and physical. In those cases employees should be fully supported via the applicable employment entitlements.

But what if you suspect an employee is misusing their sick leave?

The Right People on Your Business Bus

In his book, Good to Great, Jim Collins creates a clear metaphor by comparing a business to a bus and the leader as the bus driver. He emphasizes that it is crucial to continuously ask “First Who, Then What?”

You are a bus driver. The bus, your company, is at a standstill, and it’s your job to get it going. You have to decide where you’re going, how you’re going to get there, and who’s going with you.

Most people assume that great bus drivers (read: business leaders) immediately start the journey by announcing to the people on the bus where they’re going—by setting a new direction or by articulating a fresh corporate vision.

In fact, leaders of companies that go from good to great start not with “where” but with “who.”

I’d Rather Juggle Chainsaws

Labour is biggest maker or breaker in project profitability in the construction industry. A 5% swing either way can cause a 50% swing in net profit.  This is particularly true for renovation projects, where the labour component typically represents a higher proportion of the total cost, compared to new builds.  The work is also more…

Struggling to find staff?

I guess you’ve noticed, finding a good people to add to your team isn’t easy right now, especially if you are in Auckland or Christchurch. I hear this complaint regularly from the owners of construction companies I talk to and that they either have low or no response to their ads, or that the calibre of…

Goal Setting Does Work

I came away from a client meeting last week with a building company owner really pleased to hear that a new staff performance review system we had introduced had been a great success with the field staff.  There is always a risk of these more “corporate-like” processes being resisted strongly by the guys on site…