5 Steps to Get your Company Rated Highly on Glassdoor

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Glassdoor is an online employment portal that lets employees rate the companies they work for on multiple criteria like compensation, culture, CEO’s effectiveness and more. Its ratings model is unique because, unlike corporate research publications, Glassdoor’s company ratings are completely crowdsourced. This opens up a goldmine of opportunities for companies to get on Glassdoor’s radar as a great place to work. So how can you leverage this aspect of Glassdoor to get your company rated as a cool place to work?

Benefits of Glassdoor

  1. Glassdoor offers multiple awards and badges that add to a company’s prestige. Awards and publications by Glassdoor include: Best Places to Work, Highest Rated CEOs, Top Companies for Career Opportunities, Top Companies for Work-Life Balance, and more. Companies can, and do, showcase these badges on their website to build their credibility.
  2. Glassdoor’s reports are quoted in mainstream media outlets such as the Huffington Post, Forbes, Techcrunch and more. Such worldwide exposure affords companies free publicity.
  3. Companies featured on Glassdoor with positive reviews tend to attract top talent. Qualified candidates want to work for companies that existing employees speak well of in a public forum.
  4. Companies gain access to unbiased employee reviews and can see competitive insights which help them tweak their talent and recruitment strategies.

Glassdoor Badge

How to Get High Ratings on Glassdoor
Assuming that you have laid the ground work in establishing a great company culture and people enjoy coming in to work at your company, you can encourage your employees to participate on Glassdoor using the following steps:

Step 1: Sign Up For a Free Employer Account
You can sign up for a free employer account which will help you see who’s viewing your company’s profile, allow you to update your company information and recruit top talent.

Step 2: Ask Employees to Sign Up For Glassdoor Using Facebook
Ask your employees to sign up for Glassdoor’s Facebook app. Glassdoor integrates with Facebook to help people find out which friends are working in which company. Even though all reviews are anonymous – an important point to stress to your employees – Facebook activity may show up in users’ newsfeeds. This will help encourage more people to sign up since their peers are doing so.

Step 3: Ask Employees to Write an Honest and Balanced Review
Since Glassdoor allows “only one company review per employee a year”, do make it count! Encourage employees to voice their opinion on what it’s like to work at your company so that others may benefit from their years of experience. Help employees understand that you are building the company’s culture together, since what they write will shape the opinion of future employees. You can even convert this into an annual event, where all employees write or update their company’s review on Glassdoor every year. This way, your company’s reviews are always fresh and of value to prospective candidates.

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Step 4: Respond to All Reviews
When you respond to reviews – both positive and negative – you get a chance to showcase your company’s transparent approach and communicative nature. Future job candidates will see you as a company that actively listens to and responds to feedback. While responding to reviews, ensure your tone stays positive and that you remain transparent.

Step 5: Share Reviews on Social Networks and with Media Outlets
Once your reviews and responses are in place, it’s time to get promoting! Share the reviews on all your social networks and encourage your employees to do so too. Send your company ratings to your local media and write a press release to encourage them to find an angle on your company’s story. For example, if many of your employees say that the food/catering is awesome at your company, that could be a “hook” that journalists can use to write about your company as a great place to work.

Glassdoor won a webby award for the “best employment site 2012”. Its various reports continue to be highlighted publicly in the media and are fast becoming a resource for finding insider information about any company. Now is the time to claim your company profile on Glassdoor and take control of it. After all, which other mainstream job site offers you crowdsourced ratings that you can use to your advantage?

Is your company on Glassdoor? Do you think employees reviews can help your organization become known as a great place to work or would it open Pandora’s Box? Do share your thoughts in the comments below.

– Paul Keijzer

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Why Should You Become A Mentor?

Mentoring

“Before you are a leader success is all about growing yourself, when you are a leader success is all about growing others” – Jack Welch

So why should you and why would you trouble yourself in making the effort, investing time and emotional capital in trying to mentor someone junior. Of course you should not. If you really feel that mentoring someone younger is a burden then is not worth it, please don’t do it because it will not work and will leave a bad taste in everybody’s mouth.

Let me however ask you a question. When you are 85 and looking back on your career and people are asked to summarize your achievements, which of the below statements would you prefer (you can only choose one of the two)

“John has been an amazing achiever. He beat the competition, doubled our market share, tripled the revenue of the company and quadrupled the profit. Shareholders loved him for dividend soared and made them rich”

Versus

“John was a real talent magnet; he attracted the best and no matter your ability he was able to help individuals grow beyond what they thought was possible. Whoever worked with him succeeded to bigger jobs and 10 of them became CEO’s of other large companies. They all recognize him for the impact he had on their career”

Personally I would choose the second example any time. Why? Simply because financial results are as lasting as the calendar they are made in. Ho Chi Minh, the founding father of modern Vietnam captured this beautifully when he said “to reap a return in 10 years plant trees, to reap a return in 100 years cultivate the people”.

Even if you are not driven by the desire to positively impact another person’s career, then here are some other reasons why you should consider mentoring:

1. Mentoring others accelerates your own career
First and foremost mentoring will accelerate your own career. Developing talent for most companies is a capability that they will carefully assess regarding the potential of a future leader. Your ability to attract, support and push mentees forward proves to your managers that you have the ability to not only deliver results, but also the talent needed to further grow the organization.

2. You will in return learn as well
Mentoring someone younger gives you the opportunity to learn from others. You will be challenged to stay on top of your game by teaching others. You get the opportunity to see the world from someone else’s perspective, you get an opportunity to stay in tune with what is ‘really’ happening in the organization and hopefully have an opportunity to get infused with new ideas as you will be stepping outside your normal circle of influence.

3. Build long lasting reciprocal relationships
Finally, mutual beneficial mentoring relationships last a life time. Giving the opportunity to help each other out over a long period of time will at some point in time prove that you would appreciate if your mentee could mentor you.

Senior managers will share their knowledge and experience and in turn the junior upcoming talent will bring to your table innovative and new ideas to allow you to be the best you can be!

Next week I will write about how to make a mentoring relationship work for both parties.

– Paul Keijzer

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Management Trainees: The Special Ones

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Many companies have got a management trainee scheme in place in which they recruit the ‘creme-de-la-creme’ from top universities, announce their arrival with much aplomb in the organization, give them a two year rotation program, provide them with all the ‘trendy’ training courses, promote them upon completing the two years and then put them on a career fast track. They are the ‘Special Ones’.

Whenever I have conversations with ‘battle-hardened’ middle managers on management trainees they understand why the company is doing it, but that they have two problems with it.

Firstly they tell me that this is all well but their concern is that this kid is going to be with them for a couple of months max and his / her special treatment will create a lot of resentment with other team members whom they count on for the delivery of year-on-year results and the company can’t afford to jeopardize that. Absolutely true and I can feel the dichotomy between the need for short term (prime responsibility of middle managers) and long term development of talent. 

My answer in these situations has always been that being a top talent is not a genetic implant. Everybody has the opportunity for a career. As long as you deliver outstanding results and do it in a way that is compatible with the companies culture you can become a top talent. It’s an aspiration that everybody can have and should be able to achieve. 

And that is where middle manager can play a role, helping their solid performers to acquire skills / experiences and providing them with opportunities to show to the world that they are also capable of delivering outstanding results. So they are then recognized as top talent and being pushed up in the organization. 

The other objection middle managers raise is that putting someone on such a pedestal only sets him up for failure as they become over confident and big headed. This one I feel is much more difficult to answer and I have seen examples where giving your graduates special attention and making them feel they are the ‘special one’ is counter-productive. 

Scientific research backs up this concern. Studies primarily focused on the effect of ‘praise on children’, especially adolescents, have delivered similar insights.

In a scientific study from Mueller and Dweck in 1998 randomly selected students from a  wide range of socio economic backgrounds were provided with problems to solve, after which they were praised for either (1) their intelligence and score, (2) their effort and score or simply (3) the score they received. When provided a second and third set of problems of increasing difficulty the children who received praise for their efforts constantly improved their scores whereas the children praised for their intelligence did the worst and overall declined in score from the first to the third round. 

Ed Wiseman in 59 Seconds states that “praising children on their traits (intelligence, talents) can actually have a detrimental effect as it encourages them to avoid challenging situations, not try so hard and quickly become demotivated. In contrast praising efforts encourages people to stretch themselves, work hard and persist in the face of difficulties.”

So when you praise your ‘Special Ones’ don’t compliment on their abilities or talents. You need to focus on their effort, concentration, ability to overcome obstacles, ability to learn, the way they interacted with people, built a team and the new ideas that they put forward. Make it as practical as possible and make them feel special about the things that matter, not about the traits that they are gifted with. 


– Paul Keijzer

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Breaking Bad Habits

good-bad-habits-300x263We all have bad habits. Some people bite their nails, some smoke, some can’t resist that last cupcake and some just can’t get out of bed in time. Some bad habits are small nuisances (mostly to others) while others can be detrimental to our own, and other peoples, happiness (addictions of any kind). We often try to break them, but the majority of people fail to kick their bad habit to the curb. Only 5% of people that join Weight Watchers achieve and sustain their target weight for 2 years!

What are habits, how do they come about, how do you recognize them, and if you know what they are, can you change them? These were some of the questions that New York Times business writer Charles Duhigg tried to answer in his new book; The Power of Habit.

According to Duhigg, habits are powerful things. They prevent you from having to make millions of decisions every day; from how you brush your teeth, to what you eat for breakfast, how you drive to work or to what you do first when you open your computer (read the sports page, check your Facebook page or dive right into those big tasks that you have to complete today). When a habit emerges, the brain stops fully participating in any decision-making and your behavioral pattern unfolds automatically.

The problem is that your brain can’t tell the difference between good and bad habits and as a result, whenever a behavior has become a habit, your brain just waits for the cue and then simply executes it.

So what is a habit? A habit is a loop in which a specific action is triggered by a cue and followed by a reward. Whether it is a sugar rush from eating that chocolate bar, the caffeine kick from your morning coffee or the endorphins that get released by regular exercise, your mind becomes trained to expect the same certain reaction to your actions.

As a habit is a simple cue, action, reward loop, you can actually go about to change it. Duhigg offers a four-step framework to change a habit:

Step 1: Identify the routine
Step 2: Experiment with rewards
Step 3: Isolate the cue
Step 4: Have a plan

At the end of his book, Duhigg himself concludes, “All patterns that exist in our lives are habits that we know exist. Once you understand that habits can change, you have the freedom -and the responsibility- to remake them. Once you understand that habits can be rebuilt, the only option left is to get to work and change them.”

Today I started trying to create a new habit for myself. Instead of waking up lazily at 7:30am to check the sports pages, my blog counts and my emails, today I woke up at 6:00am, had 90 minutes more to get in some exercise, meditate and start the day with my writing. This blog is a result of my first day! My cue was my desire to get more out of my day with the personal insight that I am most productive early in the morning. My reward; exercising and writing gives me the discipline that I crave and producing something early in the day gives me that feeling that, no matter what happens later in the day, I have still achieved something.

Will keep you all posted on whether I am able to translate this intention into a good habit! Good luck changing your bad habits!

– Paul Keijzer

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Myanmar’s Talent Gold Rush

title-Gold-RushI got to spend a fantastic couple of days in Myanmar last week and had a really wonderful experience. Having been isolated by economic sanctions for more than a decade, Myanmar is shaking off its shackles, focusing on the future and booming. The international business world is descending on Myanmar, as it is one of the last white spaces, and is hungry to capitalize on the desire of 55 million people who rightfully believe their time has come.

Infrastructure, FMCG, Automotive, Pharma, Energy Companies and recently, Telecom Operators, are all knocking on Myanmar’s door. Some companies had come prepared, moved in the moment the sanctions were removed and now have a significantly successful head start in running their businesses.

Setting up shop in Myanmar is not for the faint hearted. It has many challenges, but probably the most difficult is finding, developing and retaining Burmese talent. Myanmar’s underinvestment in education, its isolation and the brain drain of Burmese talent to other part of the world has created a super storm, almost wiping out the availability of Burmese talent capable of running an international business.

This high demand and low supply of talent has created a Talent Gold Rush (like the situation I witnessed in China in the 90’s and Vietnam in the early 00’s) where new entrants are going all out to spot talent and are trying to lure them away from existing companies. Existing businesses are introducing all kinds of golden handcuffs in order to retain their staff. The few Burmese who are lucky enough to have the required skill set, fare well by this situation, as their salaries are destined to multiply of the next years. But, an ever-increasing salary spiral for the happy few is not a solution for Myanmar and those companies that are trying to build a successful and sustainable business.

For companies to succeed and for the government to ensure the economic boom trickles down to other parts of the society, both need to design a creative and holistic talent strategy. This strategy should combine casting the recruitment net wide and far, an all out effort to bring people up the skill curve in the shortest possible time and creating a heartfelt connection that binds people with the company.

The companies that prevail in Myanmar will be those that make the achievements of the country and its people their success. That success needs to be earned “Inch-by-Inch” through hard work, being smart, moving fast and a long-term focus.

The enthusiasm, energy and excitement in Myanmar is palpable; It is their time and I am sure they will capitalize on this to the fullest. Lets hope it lifts as many boats as possible and that the past decade has not created a lost generation.

– Paul Keijzer

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