Posts tagged: Cost-Benefit Analysis of Employee Training

A Good Employee Engagement Strategy Starts with Planning, but the Results Come from How You Train, Promote and Manage it Over Time!

By John Schaefer, October 8, 2013 9:01 pm

All the brainstorming, development, training, enthusiasm and good intentions are great, but how do you know who’s really engaged?  More importantly, how do you know that you’re getting true ROI?

I had the privilege of watching Chester Elton of TheCultureWorks in action.  He is a very successful author, highly engaging speaker, motivation expert and, well … a blast to be with!

I made sure to read and digest his latest book, “All In” before I saw him present, so I could be up to date on his latest thinking.  Boy, am I glad I did!  Chester introduced a new concept called E + E + E that he claims will lead your organization to world-class levels of efficiency, profitability and customer satisfaction.  Okay, I’m interested! He defines them as follows:

Engaged – Your employees are responsible, accountable and can appreciate the value of their personal contributions to the company’s big picture.

Enabled – They have the right tools, training and management support to do the job right.

Energized – There is a balance of work and home life that leads to high levels of well-being and satisfaction.  Employees are recognized both as teams and individually, and are regularly praised for their effort.  They like being at work and helping you succeed!

Not only did I get to understand this from the book, but had the opportunity to hear Chester explain it to a group, as they sat on the edge of their seats.  This is definitely cutting edge, timely stuff!

E + E + E it spot on, but what happens when Chester and his team are gone and the hype dies down. How do you know that it’s still working and not fading away in the hustle and bustle of the daily grind?

I decided that what’s needed is a tracking tool that follows E + E + E and makes it easy to measure, report, tweak and enhance employee behaviors to optimize productivity, engagement and profitability over time.  I call it R + R + R, and it is defined like this:

Recognize – Let employees know that your motives are genuine and show them that you care about them as human beings.  Engage their Right Brain (the warm, fuzzy, emotional side), so they feel good about you, your company and the goals you have set for the team.

Reward – Once they know you care, most employee will automatically want to bring additional Discretionary Effort to the workplace; but not because they have to.  They want to do more, because it feels good, will help THEIR company succeed and they can see specific opportunities to share in the financial success of a more competitive, winning organization.

Review/Reinforce – Using today’s technology, we can measure and compare all kinds of employee activities against previous benchmark performance.  By making this part of the initial training and showing managers not only what to do, but why it’s worth doing, it becomes easy to fine tune employee behaviors to optimize results in all areas of your organization.

While I’d love to tell you that this is easy and that guys like Chester can come in, do a little dance and sprinkle magic “Recognition Dust” on your supervisors, so this all begins to happen automatically, it’s a bit more work than that.

The good news is that when your management team and employees know you care; have a comprehensive, realistic and consistent plan; are shown regular appreciation and are allowed to share in the results, amazing things will happen.  Best of all, once it’s embedded into your company culture, you can’t shut it off and the benefits keep growing over time!

(E + E + E) + (R + R + R) = significant ROI that you can prove to your CFO!

To learn more about Chester Elton and his company TheCultureWorks, email him personally at

For more information on John Schaefer, Schaefer Recognition Group and to learn about how our Umbrella Recognition Solution can work for you and your employees, visit or email me at

The Shifting Definition of Worker Loyalty

By John Schaefer, May 10, 2011 9:48 pm

Lesson on Recognition from Packers & Steelers Superbowl 45

By John Schaefer, February 8, 2011 3:54 pm

While I was pushing for the Steelers, what was not too love about Superbowl 45?  Looked like they might just come back and pull it off (like they did against my Arizona Cardinals two years ago!)

At the end of the game when Roger Staubach brought in the Vince Lombardi Trophy, I couldn’t help but notice how all of the Green Bay Packers’ players lined up just to touch the trohy as it went by on the way to the podium.  I thought to myself, “… wonder how many corporate executives watching this picked up on this powerful form of recognition? Unfortunately, not many.  Most will go back to work on Monday and continue to use cash and gift cards to reward their people, then wonder why it’s not working very well.” 

We see it at every Superbowl, World Series and Olympics; the power of trophy-value and how money, while appreciated, can never bring out the extra effort it takes for top athletes to win the biggest events.  We all want and need compensation, but the big plays and gut-level extra effort come from people striving for “The Prize”, not an extra couple of bucks.   We see it over and over, yet don’t often translate it into getting top performance from our employees and managers.

If you’d like to know more about how this can happen at your company, visit me at

Today’s Recognition and Incentive Strategies Must Engage Employees, Not Manipulate Them

By John Schaefer, January 24, 2011 9:04 am

Bob Dawson of Business Group posed an interesting challenge to organizations regarding their use of incentive programs.  He suggests that it needs to be far more than just a list of prizes to win. 

I tend to see this as a game of perception.  What you see as “winning” and the reason it sends shivers down your spine, Bob, is because deep down (may not even that deep) we all know that the perception of the employee is a quick, poorly thought out Carrot and Stick situation . . . dangle a goodie, then subtly threaten with the stick behind your back.

Todays younger employees see this as nothing more than manipulation and whether they say it or not, rensent it every time.  The results are often just enough to win, or at the very least enough to not look bad to the boss; not the high levels of engagement, creativity and permanent performance improvement hoped for.

Going forward with out multi-generation al work force, Recognition and Incentive programs must be transformed in to comprehensive Communications Strategies with a training-based approach that engages the management team first, so they come across as educated, enthusiastic and genuine to the participants.

Then, tie it in with the company’s goals and objectives, involve all departments in the development, and launch in a way that employees feel like part of an exciting, relevant team, not just a bunch of cogs in a big machine.

Trust is the Secrect Ingredient in all Successful Recognition and Performance Improvement Programs.

By John Schaefer, December 18, 2010 8:56 am
It finally hit me why I struggle to understand why there are so many speakers “talking” about employee engagement, recognition and motivation, but nobody like us.  I think that we cross that dangerous line into the area of TRUST.  You can provide people information about why they “should” have a better attitude, work harder, work smarter, work safer, and the logic makes sense.  But it what your employees hear is data that leads to you doing more for them, it’s really seen as a motive of subtle manipulation… you against The Man!
All areas of Employee Performance Improvement come from Discretionary Effort; that belief from the employee’s heart that you as an organization truly value and respect them.  Only when you are starting from a basis of genuine caring and trust, will discretionary effort kick in and your engagement ideas be seen a Win-Win opportunities.  The best part is that once you’ve created this attitude, all of the improvements come for free.
If you’d like to know more about how this can happen at your company, visit me at

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