August 6, 2007

What to Do When Your Employees Hit Home Runs–and Their Names are not Bonds or Rodriguez

By Paul Bieber

This past weekend two events happened in Major League Baseball which everyone has heard about. Barry Bonds tied Hank Aaron’s home run record, and Alex Rodriguez became the youngest ballplayer to reach the 500 home run milestone. To the seven people out there who care about Barry Bonds–congratulations. The rest of us can admire the skill and grace that Alex Rodriguez has displayed.

What do you do when a player on your glass industry team team hits a Home Run? Let’s define what a Long Ball is in our glass industry league. It is doing a tough job, with a fussy customer, so well that the expected complaint phone call becomes a thank you phone call from the customer. That’s a Round-Tripper! It is when a customer calls your office for a quote, and your office assistant does the quote, calls the customer back, sells the job, adds low-e, and when you look at it, the selling price is just a little higher than you would have asked for! That’s a Dinger.

A Home Run is a 3 month period without a recordable accident. And of course, a Grand Slam year is when your accountant tells you to start spending on capital equipment.

When a Round-Tripper is hit, reward the employee when it happens. Let the flashbulbs pop and the streamers come down from the upper deck. Don’t wait until the employee’s written review. Order a cake from the bakery, get your staff together and have a ten minute celebration sharing the joy of something well done. As for the individual, privately give them a small thank you. It can be a prepaid gas card or a restaurant gift card. The amount of money can be small or significant, but the THANK YOU should be shouted so that your whole company knows that this special someone did something that helped the whole company. If the Big Hit scored you a $100,000 profit, then the celebration should be a lot larger.

So, enjoy the game in the glass industry league, celebrate every time someone Goes Yard, and you will be in the profit play-offs every year!