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Exact Staff News

  • How Uncertainty in Business Can Lead to Great Power and Opportunity

    01/23/17 1:15 PM | By :Exact Staff | Categories : Employers | Leave a Comment
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    The only constant in business? Change.

    Regardless of your industry, organizational size or the number of years you’ve been in business, today’s operational environment is volatile, complex, and yes – uncertain. As a leader, does that uncertainty cripple or exhilarate you?

    A lot of it has to do with how you plan to manage it.

    Take, for example, the impact of the recent presidential election. In addition to the uncertainty created by President Trump’s proposed changes during his first 100 days in office (which could impact everything from employee healthcare and overtime pay to our tax code), the campaign and election may have already had an incredibly polarizing effect on your employees.

    What’s the best way to handle all the ambiguity, tension, heightened emotions and divisiveness? This SmartBrief post provides two excellent suggestions for leveraging the power and opportunity inherent in uncertainty:

    Foster Empathy

    If your team seems polarized or anxious, say so. Acknowledging their tension is the first step in understanding and appreciating the unique emotional reaction each employee may be experiencing. By fostering acceptance of differing views (especially in uncertain times), you alleviate some of the pressure tension creates – preventing an “us versus them” mentality from taking hold.

    Build on “Sameness”

    Your organization is a place where employees feel a sense of belonging. Regardless of political views, external uncertainty, or any other differences or volatility, every employee has one important thing in common: they all work for the same organization.

    As a leader, you have a unique opportunity to build on this commonality. Let your team know that, regardless of individual perspectives, you all stand together in facing the unknown. Rally your team around this common purpose, and use it to unite your employees in pursuing a common goal.

    Looking for more ideas to help you manage uncertainty?

    Read our earlier post on “forward thinking,” which shares practical tips for formalizing processes to determine what’s coming next for your business – and how best to handle change.

    Then give Exact Staff a call. We’ll help you:

    • Analyze the potential impact changes in your business, industry, or even the political or economic environment – could have on your workforce needs;

    • Develop a flexible staffing strategy to make your organization more responsive and resilient;

    • Proactively plan your human capital needs, to increase cost-effectiveness and hiring success.

    Schedule a free workforce consultation with us today. Together we can assess your challenges, brainstorm options and design smart strategies to help you prepare for what’s next.

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Understand Emotional Intelligence to Predict Future Leaders in Your Company

01/23/17 1:10 PM | By :Exact Staff | Categories : Employers | Leave a Comment
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Baby Boomers are retiring. Skills gaps are widening. Retention isn’t what it used to be.

How can ensure your business will continue to have amazing leaders for years to come?

Grow your own.

Developing internal talent and promoting from within is smart business – but identifying your company’s future leaders involves more than measuring their productivity. To successfully predict your best candidates for leadership, you need gauge their emotional intelligence (EQ).

What’s EQ?

At its simplest, EQ is a combination of self-awareness and awareness of others. It’s a unique kind of intelligence that enables you to identify and manage your emotions. The result of effective communication between the rational and emotive centers of your brain, EQ helps you recognize emotion in others, allowing you to understand their behavior better.

It’s also one of the most important measures of potential leadership success.

People with a high EQ:

  • Are better able to manage their relationships with others;

  • Are able to recognize the role emotion plays in their workplace;

  • React appropriately and effectively to others.

As a result, individuals with high emotional intelligence are perceived as strong and authentic; people want to follow their lead.

How can you use EQ to identify your company’s future leaders?

Assessing emotional intelligence starts with asking great questions. Here are a few you can customize to determine if employees have empathy, self-awareness and the ability to effectively manage their own emotions:

Tell me about a high-stress situation you encountered on the job. Why did it occur, and how did you manage it?

This question will help you understand how well an individual controls his emotions in the face of adversity. In his response, look for evidence of situational awareness, proper prioritization and sound decision-making.

Describe a situation in which you did something which negatively impacted a customer or co-worker. How did you know it affected this person, and what did you do about it?

An individual with high emotional intelligence will describe cues (e.g., body language, tone of voice, pattern of communication) he noticed which indicated something was wrong, and then explain how he adjusted his own behavior accordingly.

When has your mood impacted your performance – either positively or negatively?

Individuals with leadership potential realize that they must keep their own emotions in check to manage situations (and others) effectively. Look for a response that shows the employee not only understands his emotions, but can control his behavior in spite of them.

Growing your team?

Experts in behavior interviewing, Exact Staff’s recruiters can help you identify candidates with the experience, aptitude and emotional intelligence to thrive in leadership roles. Contact your local Exact Staff location to make hiring leaders faster, simpler and more successful .

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Four Rules Every Great Boss Follows

01/20/17 3:19 PM | By :Exact Staff | Categories : Employers | Leave a Comment
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Wouldn’t it be great if every management position came with its own rulebook?

Unfortunately, no leadership role is that simple (or static). But that doesn’t mean you have to “reinvent the wheel” if you want to grow as a manager. The truth is, following these four rules will help you become an even better boss – regardless of your industry, functional role or the size of your team:

Lead through Empowerment

Great bosses are not micromanagers. They hire smart, trust their employees and empower them – creating an environment in which staff members have ample room and resources to perform their jobs well.

Set your employees up for empowered success before you “hand over the reins” by delegating effectively:

  • Choose the right projects for delegation. Ones that are discrete, yet challenging, work best.

  • Set clear expectations. Employees must understand the goals for the project, important deadlines, and key deliverables.

  • Keep instructions simple. Provide essential information, but don’t over-explain (your employees are smart and want to think for themselves).

  • Make sure individuals have adequate time, tools, authority and other resources to complete the work.

  • Be available to answer questions and provide feedback, but resist the urge to hover.

  • Circle back once the project is complete to review results, reward exceptional performance and learn from any mistakes that were made.

Continually Develop Your Employees

You’ve built an amazing team of talented people. But if you aren’t helping them learn, stretch and grow as professionals, you’re doing yourself, your employees and your entire company a disservice.

The great news? If you follow rule #1 and create a culture of empowerment, your employees will, by design, have ample opportunity to stretch their wings, take on more responsibility, and continually grow.

Beyond that, make professional development an integral part of every performance review. When you meet with each employee, revisit and update a three-to-five-year career-development plan that provides the challenge and clear direction he needs.

Connect the Dots

While it’s fairly easy for some employees (e.g., sales professionals) to understand their importance to your business, the value other employees (e.g., those who serve internal customers) provide may not be as apparent to them.

If you want to be an exceptional boss, make sure each employee understands the impact he makes on your organization. Help individuals understand your company’s “big picture” – and how their daily activities directly affect things like quality, efficiency, customer retention, and profitability. Finally, show your team the future of your organization – and their role in it. Doing so unites employees to work hard toward achieving long-term goals.

Walk the Walk

A great boss is only as good as his word. So make sure your words always match your behaviors – in everything you do, large and small. And, on the rare occasion, you can’t honor a commitment (for whatever reason), be forthright about the reason why. Even if you can’t live up to what you initially pledged, honest communication will help you preserve the trust and respect you’ve worked so hard to earn.

Want to be a Great Boss?

Build a great workplace with Exact Staff. With a full complement of national staffing and placement solutions, the Exact Family of Companies provides the right resources, exactly when you need them, to fuel success. To learn more about how we can help, schedule a free consultation today.

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Trying to Instill a Healthy New Habit in 2017? Here’s How to Stick to It

01/20/17 3:08 PM | By :Exact Staff | Categories : Job Seekers | Leave a Comment
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Your co-worker just started her third year of crossfit training.

Your cousin quit smoking for good in 2016.

And that employee of yours? He’s already dropped 10 lbs. – and he only started dieting on January 1st!

You’re outwardly happy for them (of course). But on the inside? Frankly, you’re kind of irritated – how do they crush their New Year’s resolutions so easily?

Is there some secret to success they’re not sharing?

Heck – are they just better people than you?

Nope. In fact, of the approximately 40% of Americans who make New Year’s resolutions, a meager 8% actually achieve them. So if you struggle to follow through on the commitments you make each time the calendar flips, you’re in good company.

But if you’d rather be part of the 8%, keep reading. Below, we share a few practical tips to help you keep that healthy new habit you’re trying to instill in 2017:

Be Specific

Vague resolutions are impossibly difficult to achieve. If you commit to “being healthier” this year, how will you know in December if you’ve hit your goal? Get specific about exactly what you want to do. Quantify and/or qualify it, so you can measure your progress throughout the year.

Break that Big Resolution into Smaller Goals

Losing 50 lbs. seems like a daunting goal, but losing one pound per week sounds much less intimidating (it’s just 2.5 ounces per day!). Intermediary goals are easier to achieve and are cause for celebration throughout the year (which will motivate you to keep going as you hit each one).

Expect Setbacks

And readily forgive yourself. Straying from your goal doesn’t mean you have to abandon it completely. If you get off track, just tell yourself that tomorrow is a new day – and then get back to it.

Make it Public

Tell your friends, family and co-workers all about your healthy new habit and goals. Encouragement, positive peer pressure (and the risk of public shame) are powerful motivators.

Plan for Rough Patches

Travel, illness, company in town and hectic work schedules can impact your routine. If you want to keep your healthy habit on track, develop contingency plans for times when your schedule is disrupted.

For example, if your healthy new habit is to run 6 miles each week, create a backup plan for times that work, weather or illness wreaks havoc with your schedule. Shift your run by a day; walk if you’re recovering from a cold; find a treadmill if it’s snowing sideways. Be flexible. Get creative. Just don’t make excuses!

Resolved to create more free time for yourself in 2017?

Get help from Exact Staff. With a national presence and a full complement of staffing and placement solutions, we can free up more of your time by:

  • Providing temporary support to “offload” low-priority or repetitive tasks.

  • Assuming the time-consuming aspects of hiring including managing job postings, screening resumes and conducting initial interviews.

  • Taking a proactive approach to staffing and recruiting. The better you plan your needs, the more effectively we can help you meet them (saving you time and frustration!).

If you’re ready to learn more, give Exact Staff a call.

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