Monthly Archives: July 2018

Motivation Instead Of Marketing

Which instruments make a company more efficient and successful? Controlling? The process optimizations? The new marketing strategy? Possibly. But leadership training on employee motivation can be most effective.

Written by Jens Kügler

Fully motivated: around one third of all employees work in this way. Fully motivated sounds good, one third quite sobering. That means: Two thirds of all employees work little motivated or with no motivation at all. That’s the result of a study by Dale Carnegie. Many employees have long since resigned in their minds. They and their employers don’t tap their full potential. These uninspired people will leave the company sooner or later, taking their knowledge and experience with them. The fluctuation rises, the company has to invest again and again in the recruitment process.

Dale Carnegie found out that certain emotions influence motivation. 28 positive and negative emotions could be “isolated” and identified. Five of them motivate, twelve demotivate, the influence of the remaining was marginal. The five motivators? Translated into the world of work, they are: feeling valued, being self-confident in the workplace, being inspired, enthusiastic (means feeling to be part of the company) and being encouraged to act independently.

Negative feelings include fear, vulnerability, contempt, apathy, boredom and being at the mercy of others. They are connected with disinterest, discomfort and annoyance. The test persons felt the latter above all in their superiors’ dealings with them. Negative emotions tend to embed themselves much more strongly than positive emotions. They are also perceived more strongly by the environment and are transferred more quickly to other employees. In any case, according to the study’s whitebook publication, the direct superior is the main person responsible for feelings in the workplace.

In short: motivating bosses inspire and enthuse. They give their employees the feeling of being a part of something bigger. Their employees are proud of their company and their meaningful work. They show more commitment. They are prepared to work more for the same salary and to take on additional tasks. Demotivating managers, on the other hand, are responsible for the poor profitability and inefficiency of their teams.

Dale Carnegie publishes its whitebooks as advertisements for its management and leadership training courses. The message between the lines is that it costs less to invest in such courses than to continue working inefficiently. But you don’t need a whitebook to understand it. Pure common sense is enough. Management training in dealing with employees is certainly one of the most economically sensible measures. Perhaps more than strategy, business development, controlling or marketing.

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Does Everyone Suddenly Have To Be “Chief”?

Anglicisms are widespread in German job descriptions. For some companies this may be advantageous and for some employees it may sound upvaluing. Elsewhere it leads increasingly to confusion and often misses the mark.

By Jens Kügler

“Guten Tag, ich bin der neue Chief Financial Officer.” (Hello, I’m the new Chief Financial Officer). I imagine how Hansi Müller – as proud as J.R. Ewing introduces himself in the accounting department to people who are now called “Assistants” (in English) and no longer by the German term for clerks. To some, the German form of CFO, Geschäftsführer Finanzen, does not sound modern enough anymore. However, words like CFO follow a sometimes embarrassing Anglicism trend, as it continues to spread in German. Sometimes the job titles take on silly forms. Often they are difficult or even impossible for applicants over here to understand.

If I asked my janitor, Slobodan K., a friendly, broken German-speaking older gentleman of Serbian origin, would he feel more important as a “Facility Manager”, he would surely look at me with questioning eyes. How about turning a “Blockchain Developer” into a German form which isnt’s hard to do? Then at least those who don’t work in that industry would know that they would no longer have to deal with this job advertisement and its deciphering.

However, does every logistician know that he should feel addressed as an “Area Supply Manager”? I’ll just suppose: One half of all logisticians miss the job advertisement for miles. The other (and not necessarily the more qualified) half find it great to be a manager and become the master of forklift and fleet armies. Exactly this kind of people will love it elsewhere to be an “Account Manager” instead of just a Kundenbetreuer. Those who have served customers as Kundenbetreuer for decades do not need such pseudo revaluations.

Can a “Web Content Strategist” not simply remain being Online Editor ? And, how was that now, is the CEO really higher in the hierarchy than the COO? Or, in other words, who is the boss or managing director here? German applicants confronted with such terms often have not much of an idea.

Stop: We live in a globalized world! Okay, in internationally active companies, these job titles may simplify cooperation and may even be necessary for the organization chart. I don’t want to expect the boss from the USA to have to deal with terms like Personalsachbearbeiter or Bäckereifachverkäuferin (… but who knows, maybe one day an “Old Germany” wave sprouts across the ocean and suddenly Americans wonder about cryptic job advertisements for them;).

No, seriously: at the car dealership Fritz Schneider or the insurance office Meier & Müller not every clerk has to be “Chief” or “Manager”. I hope this article doesn’t produce a… shitstorm (a word which I don’t want to translate into my mother tongue;).

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