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A Few Good Employees...making the most of a downsized team.

October 6, 2010

By: Omnia Group

Is your current management strategy working for you? Does it help sustain growth? How effectively is it preparing you and your employees for the future ‘new normal’ expected within the banking industry?

Given the range of challenges now faced daily by you and your team, it’s more important than ever to keep pace with management's latest trends. If, for example, you’re encouraging employees to do a job well, you’re using antiquated, pre-recession training tactics. Excelling in a job is so yesterday. Because of today’s bare-bones staff, super lean payrolls, and often unrealistic demands, you need each existing employee to excel in not just one but also several jobs simultaneously.

And, like it or not, it’s up to you to make this happen.

Doing all you can with staff stretches your financial budget and the reach of each subordinate’s capabilities. But first, you’ll need to ensure employees can successfully and comfortably carry out multiple tasks by matching their abilities to your needs. And the best way to do this is to gain extensive knowledge of their individual strengths and weaknesses. If you think you have neither the time nor the need to do this, think again, as the payoff for leading a team of well-suited, versatile, satisfied, and highly motivated workers is huge. It will set you apart as a manager and move your institution ahead of others as we pull out of this current recession.

Start observing more frequently your employees’ typical work habits. Do you have CSRs, tellers, researchers, or administrators who seem to take charge and be bold? Are they also outgoing? If so, this may signal strong sales ability or leadership tendencies. Further assessment of their core traits may point to your ability to use these employees in combination with service, sales, and supervision.

On the other hand, someone more quiet and conservative could be highly effective in various administrative tasks, quality control, or bookkeeping. Is there a future loan officer sitting unrecognized in your midst?

Successfully tying employees to jobs and jobs to results means better potential to maximize success and buy loyalty. It makes managing so much easier in the long run.

Offering staff the correct type of feedback is also necessary as they assume additional roles. To recognize and reinforce strong performances and encourage improvement where needed, however, you need to know each employee's preferred communication style. Find out if your number one teller likes public accolades or feels embarrassed by them. Is that quiet but seasoned loan officer receptive to critiques?  Should you be direct or subtle when offering advice?

Today, an increasing number of employers in all business sectors are looking to fully develop their existing staff by assigning multiple roles. However, doing so is arguably most necessary in banking, given its unprecedented influx of new rules, ongoing policy addendums, government-related paperwork, massive layoffs, and now a limited number of employees.

That said, are you ready to stop managing by yesterday’s standards and start effecting real, results-driven change?

Omnia Group

For over 30 years, we’ve helped organizations across the world improve and optimize their workforce operations and company cultures. While we take a unique, scientific approach to hiring, development and retention, we also believe every business is a people business. Our passionate advisors always put people first.

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