It happens all over Hollywood, producers’ top stars are on top of their game one minute and the next thing you know, they find themselves in the midst of a breakdown or are checking themselves into rehab. You can’t help but wonder how Chuck Lorre of CBS’s Two and Half Men didn’t notice the changes in his money maker, Charlie Sheen. Could the slow death of one of TV’s best shows have been avoided? Did MTV turn a blind eye on Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino until his behavior landed him in rehab? What would happen if producers focused on taking care of their top performers instead of waiting until it was too late to recover?
This is a common theme that often occurs in the workplace. Managers spend the majority of their time focusing on the bottom 10% of performers instead of where their focus should be, on the top performers. Naturally the top performers are the ones who work hard and put in long hours just to get the job done. They don’t typically complain until it’s very difficult or even too late to save them. Before you know it, they are walking out the door for another opportunity. It’s a slap in the face and you are left to wonder, how did that happen?
One of the most common reasons employees leave an organization is because they don’t feel that growth opportunities exist for them. At The Beryl Companies, we have a formal program in place to monitor the pulse of our top performers. Each month the senior leadership team reviews our list of top performers and how we are investing in their growth, development and morale. We make them a priority over daily tasks. Each senior team member is assigned to a top performer (outside of their department) as a mentor. They meet with their mentee at least once a month to coach and guide them through their career. Not only do highly valued employees now have an additional venue where they can share concerns or thoughts long before morale is negatively impacted, but they feel honored that a senior leader makes time for them. As leaders we now have a stronger tie to the pulse of the organization, our super stars feel valued and to us we are all “winning”!
Editors Note: For the past 12 years Lara Morrow has been The Queen of Fun & Laughter at The Beryl Companies, a title accidentally appointed due to her wacky personality. She spearheads their internal communication, recognition, employee relations, leadership training and culture strategy. Her efforts have led to Beryl being recognized nine different times as a best place to work including being voted the #2 Best Medium Sized Company to work for in America. She is a co-author of Smile Guide, Employee Perspectives on Culture, Loyalty and Profit. After hours, Lara “releases steam” through her passion for cooking, blogging and reviewing local restaurants.