"Most organisations don’t know very much about their workforce. They forget that individuals did loads of stuff before they joined."
STEPHEN BROOKS, PEOPLE MANAGEMENT CONSULTING, PA CONSULTING GROUPBen SchillerFinancial Management1 November 2011
PA’s Stephen Brooks, specialist in people management, is quoted in an article in Financial Management on how to motivate a finance team. Stephen offers advice on how to retain the brightest and the best people.
On micromanaging, Stephen says there are three proven ways of motivating people: autonomy, mastery and purpose. Stephen thinks the first can cause problems for financial professionals: “As they develop, finance people tend to have a controlling function, but as you reach managerial level you need to stop being like that. That can be quite difficult for some people. Finance attracts people who find it more difficult to trust and delegate.”
On developing people, Stephen says that money well spent will deliver long-term advantages: “The evidence shows that people stay with organisations that develop them. Sometimes you are going to lose people if you don’t offer them career advancement. But if you develop people, top talent attracts top talent, and you get in to a virtuous cycle.”
Stephen goes on to point out: “Where you see companies spending lots of money on training and then losing people, they are often doing other things wrong.”
Stephen’s final point is on understanding everything a team can do: “Most organisations don’t know very much about their workforce. They forget that individuals did loads of stuff before they joined. They tend to think about people as they are now rather than everything they have done.”