Are Your Right People Doing the Right Things?

By Douglas Weinstein
Published on: June 9, 2017

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This is a 3 part series. Part 1 will define the Unique Ability Organization. Part 2 will talk about how to write a job description based on the UAO. Part 3 will discuss the first 90 days of orientation.

You spend a great deal of time, effort and money to attract the Right People for your organization, right? That Right Person who will do the Right Things for you? Now, how much time and effort are you putting in to keep apprised of whether that Right Person is actually doing the Right Things on a day-to-day basis? You see, over time, it is inevitable that those Right People will end up taking on job responsibilities and functions that might not be tailored to their unique talents and abilities. It’s no one’s fault except for management. Job descriptions fade into the woodwork and your people seem to just assume responsibilities based on nothing but assumption. This leads to problems from either a lack of competency or general boredom, both of which leads to unforced errors.

So, how do we make sure that your Right People are doing, as part of their daily routine, those Right Things that they are best suited for? Let’s look at one example, which I call the Unique Ability Organization.

But first, a little background info that should focus your attention: according to the O.C. Tanner Corporation, the world leader in recognition and reward studies, over the past 40 years, encompassing interviews of over 400,000 employees, this is the #1 indicator of job satisfaction:

“At work, I have the opportunity to do what I do best every day.”

The Unique Ability Organization

Everyone has unique abilities – things that they do effortlessly, that come naturally, that make them happy and proud to be doing them.  Additionally, everyone has merely competent abilities – things they can do, that they are able to do, but that they find boring and repetitive. And admittedly, we all have our incompetent abilities – things we just aren’t good at. The more incompetent or merely competent responsibilities employees assume over time takes them away from performing their unique ability – which is what you want them to be doing every day!

The Unique Ability Organization is about defining a given job or position and then going out and finding the Right Person for that position. Of equal importance, the UAO is about reviewing each employee at least once a year to determine if they are still doing what they do best, or have they taken on job responsibilities that diminish their overall performance? The UAO’s goal is to have every team member do what they do best every day, and to discover incompetencies within the organization, define the perfect candidate to assume those responsibilities and then to go out and fill that position with another Right Person.

In an ever-changing business world where the marketplace can rapidly veer one way or another, an agile workforce is a blessing. But top leaders will make it part of the plan to evaluate whether you are getting the best from your workforce – which means your Right People are happy and motivated because they get to do what they do best every day. Next time we’ll talk about job descriptions and filling positions based on the Unique Ability Organization.

Douglas Weinstein

Douglas Weinstein

Doug is the managing editor and co-founder of the Technology Insider Group. He is also the executive editor of the forthcoming Technology Designer Magazine, that debuts January 2019. Previously, he was the co-founder and Executive Director of the Elf Foundation, a non-profit organization that created Room of Magic entertainment theaters in children's hospitals across North America.

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