In the recruitment space, we are constantly visiting the theme of productivity; a subject I am very much intrigued by. Covering everything from man management to encouraging confidence in the workplace, Chris Keeling provides a window into the Jobtrain way of doing things.
Steve: I’m always intrigued about people’s productivity, because I’m a productivity obsessive. Do you have any rules or mantras that you use to be more efficient?
Chris: The simple answer is no. I’m the opposite end of the scale to yourself there. I’m not a fan of measures and metrics in the workplace.
Steve: Okay, what about personal productivity? You get up in the morning, there’s a million things you could do and you have to work out what the most effective way of spending your day is. You can work 24 hours or you can work two hours. What are you going to do?
Chris: I think if I have to encourage people to work, to do what is expected of them, I think we would do that if we ended up being a very centralist organisation or a very top-down management. I don’t think that reflects the culture of our own business. I’ve got a phrase that we use.
“Do the right thing and do it right.”
What we find is people have embraced that and they’re driven by simply wanting to do the right thing. And that’s defined by every person according to what their job is and what their requirement is, as they define it. We try and make it a risk-free environment.
Steve: I understand you are quite the football fan. Do you believe there are qualities recruiters could adopt from the sporting world when it comes to people management and keeping up momentum?
Chris: Well, I heard the performance coach from Leicester City being interviewed. He was interviewed around time when Claudio Ranieri was sacked from Leicester when they were facing being in the bottom three, having won the league the year before. He was interviewed to asked what had gone wrong.
He was the performance coach when they won the First Division. He was the performance coach when they won the Championship and when they won the Premiership. He survived one game of the new season before being dismissed by a phone call from Claudio Ranieri.
This coincided with the camp being unsettled. There were changed to menus, training times and regimes; all the things that were satisfiers in the workplace. They changed the winning formula which took the fun away.
Steve: It’s interesting, I see it as a shift of a growth mindset to rights mentality and it all boils down to culture.
Chris: If people are happy, they’ll put that extra 10% in. They’ll go the extra mile. They’ll make that extra bit of effort.
It’s about having a nice environment for people to work in a healthy, supportive environment, a company that they can grow in, achieve their own ambitions and be supported. I think if you do that, then the people within will grow. A business doesn’t get better. It’s the people or the capability of the people within the business that improves. As a result, the business gets better.
A business is not an entity in its own right, it’s a collection of people so as long as the people get better, the business will.
Steve: Thank you for your time Chris.
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