Designing a new selection proceess to differentiate the right people

This month saw me working with a number of clients trying to unravel a profile that would discriminate between applicants. As organisations go through restructuring and headcount issues become more important, clients now need to really understand what quality looks like within their organisation. I have designed a number of tools that assess candidates suitability for ‘person environment fit’.

In summary, my focus has been on aligning the right people with the right skills, in the right roles.

Now looking forward to the family vacation and some good rest and relaxation.

Speak soon

Steven

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Jeremy Kavanagh Qualifies for The Open Championship 09

Jeremy and I have worked together now for almost five years. During that time we’ve been through the emotional highs and lows of the professional game and using the World Champion Psychology 7 stage process we have improved Jeremy’s performance. The ultimate high came last month when Jeremy qualified for The Open Championship whilst out on the South African Sunshine Tour.

When our new magazine Executive Athlete finally launches next month, we’re going to dedicate the first edition to Jeremy and his journey to The Open. This Edition will include excerpts from Jeremy’s Tour Diary, stories from his golfing past plus interviews with other pro’s he’s met along the way.

Watch out for the EA Magazine coming soon

Comments:

(05/03/2009)

Congratulations to Jeremy. Looking forward to receiving my copy of the EA Magazine and good luck at the Open.


Peter Nelson (07/07/2009)

Good luck to you both, and well done Jeremy. We’ll be watching out for you in the Open
Peter Nelson

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The Challenges Ahead

Well it is without doubt the most interesting climate to be consulting in right now! I have never worked in such a mixed market. Whilst some organisations I’m involved with are experiencing unprecedented growth due to their niche market opportunities, others are working on modes of survival and major reorganisaton. Each sector shares the same need for top talent and staff retention and this proves to be still the number one priority amongst my current clients.

I still think this climate offers amazing opportunities though, and there are some exciting times ahead. Where sport is concerned, I’m working with some athletes in preparation for the 2012 Olympics but the majority of my work won’t really kick in with them until next year. As this preparation continues I’ll aim to do an Olympic Blog and keep you updated. Until then I’m focussing on supporting the stars of non Olympic sports like Golf and Snooker.

Ali Carter won the Welsh Open last night, his first World Ranking Event. We had a chat in the interval which was a good opportunity for Ali to regroup and realign and he came out to the evening session like a man on a mission. Mission accomplished, it was a joy to watch. Well done Ali.

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Happy New Year

Wishing you all a Happy and Prosperous New Year. December 08 was a particually busy month for us and having just returned from Chamonix over the New Year I plan to recap on Decembers events shortly. I had a lot of fun on the media side too, with apearances on Sky Sports with Soccer AM, the clips should appear in the media section soon.

Meanwhile Happy New Year. January 09 promises to be a challenging time for most companies as we settle into the New Year and work through the first quarter. Staff retention issues appear the number one priority right now, I’ll be posting a blog shortly on some helpful advice.

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Leadership Gala Dinner – London 27th November

We have an invitation for you to join us as we dine with some of the UK’s top business leaders as they share their recipe for success at a gala dinner.

Allan Leighton, Sir Stuart Rose, Jacqueline Gold & Val Gooding CBE come head to head for the first time in aid of Breast Cancer Care. Here’s your chance to rub shoulders with some of Britain’s most powerful business leaders. For one night only, Allan Leighton and pals will provide a rare insight into what it takes to lead our most powerful organisations. Its sure to be a fascinating night, especially considering the current climate.

The dinner takes place at London InterContinental Hotel, Park Lane, this Thursday 27 November from 7:30pm. In their own no-nonsense words, all speakers will share their remarkable stories including the challenges, successes and setbacks they’ve faced to get to where they are today.

Please email us if you think you may like to join us, places are limited but if you can’t make it we will update you next week on the Blog.
Email admin@stevensylvester.com

 

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Information from our latest Restructuring Campaign

We have been approached by a number of organisations recently to assist with their restructuring and in some cases the outsourcing requirements due to current redundancy programmes. In times like this the ‘high performance culture’ that a company may have once had in place, needs attention. We are offering our ‘World Champion Psychology Audit’ to these companies to make sure that after the reorganisation, leaders are going back to basics with the three R’s.

Right people

Right roles

Right decisions

The benefits of this ‘audit’ are:
Deep understanding of how your people ‘tick’
Critical mass of shared thinking – people aligned
Ability to attract, develop, motivate and keep the right people
Improved efficiency & bottom line profit
Reduced costs

What our clients say
“..Steven has worked with us through the design and
implementation of new management structures.
Steven did a tremendous job assisting the Directors of
Premier Group in working through the best structures to
take us through a period of rapid change.
He played a vital role in getting the personal confidence
of all the management team ensuring that individual
needs and concerns were fully understood and thus
ensuring a very smooth transition through our biggest
change management program in 10 years.”
Pat Fitzgerald
Managing Director, Premier Group

We have been able to influence the leadership and
culture of leading global companies helping them to
understand the DNA of their highest achievers and to
develop a critical mass of top performing individuals.

In effect we benchmark Leaders and their Organisations performance against World Champions and what they do to ‘cross the line’ under pressure.

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The Launch of the ‘world champion psychology’™ Leadership, Retention & Development Programme

In light of the tough market conditions we have seen a real need for companies to manage their top talent. The current climate has created an atmosphere of anxiety and feelings of vulnerability amongst the most talented performers.

With a widening of the applicant pool it means more top talented individuals have greater access to opportunities as organisations look to recruit high performers. Organisations need to protect themselves against this by developing a high level retention programme.

By focussing on retaining high performers the benefits organisations can expect are
* Happier and more contented staff
* Identifying that the right people are in the right roles, making the right decisions
* Better staff retention and development
* Reduced recruitment costs
* Increased margin and efficiency through quality delivery

In response to this critical situation, this month saw the launch of our ‘Leadership, Retention & Development Programme’ designed for both the individual and the HR professional.

Courses are booking and running now but the official press launch of this Programme takes place at Stoke Park Club in October 2008 and we will post the news and links in due course. Part of the service offered includes an audit to assist Leaders in indentifying their top talent and taking those selected individuals on a tailored development programme.

Other courses offered are for individual executives looking to be fast tracked in their leadership style to aid their performance in difficult market conditions. In addition we are running a one day workshop for HR and in-house trainers looking for extra support in dealing with staff during this pressurised climate.

The aim of the ‘Leadership, Retention & Development Programme’ is to assist companies in developing and retaining their top talent and creating a critical mass of high performers that will see their organisations into and beyond the next phase of growth during these difficult market conditions.

Now is a critical time for organisations to indentify this pool of talent and develop it further. For information on how you can benefit from these courses please apply through ‘The Services’ menu.

Comments:

Stephen Kilpatrick (25/09/2008)

I’d be interested in meeting up for an initial audit of my organisation. We are going through a big restructure and I feel this process would benefit us enormously. I have enclosed my company details on email.
Look forward to hearing from you in due course.
Stephen
Director Ascom

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Allied Irish Bank Breakfast Economy Briefing

I was invited by one of the Senior Managers of Corporate Business at Allied Irish Bank (AIB) to attend a breakfast briefing at the new Terminal 5 to discuss the current economic climate. I think it’s great that AIB are creating a support network where businesses can discuss how to build ‘confidence and trust’ following a market correction.

The AIB Global Services Senior Economist gave a comprehensive assessment of the current financial picture. We’ve all been aware for a while now of the downturn in trade across many industries but not even the seasoned business people amongst us could hide their horror at her interpretation of where our economy’s going. All the latest indicators show a sharp downward trend. There was a lot of talk about ‘confidence’ and instead of people spending money on buying property, building their business and moving things forward, people are choosing to hold onto their cash.

All this uncertainty and bad feeling about the marketplace creates another form of currency which is being ignored. This is the ‘emotional currency’ that is being spent during difficult times. The anomaly here is that whilst on one hand, companies are now focussed on improving efficiency across their entire business, on the other hand staff anxiety and stress is increasing and creating its own emotional cost for the organisation.

This raises the question as to ‘what can businesses do to manage their people better during a downturn’?

Comments:

John Thompson (22/07/2008)

With this in mind Steve, any chance of a white paper with some ideas of how best to go about supporting staff/teams right now? Perhaps a downloadable would be good? I’ll email you my details but thought it would be good to comment here first.


Steven Sylvester (24/07/2008)

John, thank you for your response and question. I look forward to receiving your details, but in the meantime I think that leaders may want to consider the following metaphor:
Imagine your organisation as if it were operating like a computer hard drive. The operating system and software interacting to produce optimal performance for the user. The computer becomes infected with a virus which creates misalignment between the user’s instruction and the computers software, leading to poor functionality and a disgruntled user. Time is wasted in rebooting and trying to troubleshoot the problem which creates frustration, inefficiency and loss of margin. The standard intervention here is antivirus software that quickly scans the hard drive and fixes the problem.

Leaders, therefore, need to act in a similar way to a piece of antivirus software in this current climate. They need to:
1) Scan their organisation and become acutely aware and be sensitive to ‘people issues’.
2) Spend more ‘time’ with key staff discovering how the current climate is impacting them in both their personal and business life.
3) Communicate and give clarity to their workforce on how the organisation is going to support their employees through these difficult times.


Steven Cochran (28/07/2008)

Interesting points, particularly when you consider that many of us are in the people business. That “emotional currency” you refer to is the thing that leads directly to the “hard currency” we are all trying to generate. If you are the captain of an ocean going liner, you wouldn’t let the ship gradually be corroded away until it crashed without regular maintenance and repair. Or considering a new route…. In service industries, our people are that ship, the vehicle that brings us success, profits.

Communication is another vital aspect – for the bank this means regular discussion with customer and colleagues about what’s going on to prevent that corrosion.

That’s the way we will lead ourselves through uncertainty and rebuild confidence. Its more relevant in Finance than ever before. Banks hate surprises, dialogue is vital for all partners in business.

In summary, its actually a great time to take stock and review the way you are actually working. Is the way you do things facilitating the maximum results?


Richard Dyer -Tranzform City (31/07/2008)

These are turbulent times: tough credit, long returns, and everyone worried. A time when everyone is once again, focused on cost. What can we cut? Where are there some savings? Are there any heads we can let go?

My experience is that cutting costs is not that hard. As a consultant, I once had a client ask me to only get paid for costs I could cut. I thought to myself, “This could be my biggest payday yet. I will cut all costs. I will get expenses down to zero.” I didn’t say that and we came to an agreeable compromise but it is a good reminder that cutting costs is not hardest part of organisational transformation – growth is harder. Growth is what makes an organisation successful, it is what keeps people in their chairs and it is the hardest thing to do.

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