The world has changed; organizations and individuals need more flexibility and are working remotely in greater numbers than ever before. At the beginning of 2021, 32% of Canadian employees aged 15 to 69 worked most of their hours from home, compared with just 4% in 2016. According to Statistics Canada, this trend is likely to continue and could have far-reaching implications for everything from housing markets to traffic.
It is also likely that organizations will continue to experience major challenges in the areas of finding and keeping talent. In a recent Forbes article, the Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM) is quoted as saying that “the tide is about to turn. The SHRM cites a study showing that more than half of employees surveyed in North America plan to look for a new job in 2021. They go on to say that we are seeing the beginning of a shift in power away from companies and toward workers. One tool that can help companies compete in the talent war is the DISC behavioural assessment. These assessments allow organizations and managers to “know their talent.” As we emerge into the post-pandemic work world, leadership flexibility requires “Behavioural Intelligence” in tailoring your approach to each individual by understanding the diversity of their work preferences. The greatest competitive advantage in the war for talent will be understanding how to hire it, coach it, and keep it.
Hiring the right fit team member remotely can be a bit like trying to identify the members of Daft Punk at a cocktail party. Unless you know them without their stage masks, you will not be able to identify them. Recent research indicates that as many as 36% of people want to continue working remotely. But whether jobs continue to be remote or eventually move to hybrid, it’s likely virtual hiring will continue — along with its many challenges. Hiring “right fit” candidates is a little more challenging without in-person contact. Hiring managers are restricted to CVs, LinkedIn Profiles, and virtual interviews, losing a lot of information that was previously gained through non-verbal communication. Does this person prefer detailed written work, or work that involves more people interaction? Are they deliberate and thoughtful in their responses, or more rapid-fire and off-the-cuff? DISC behavioural profiles help managers get up to speed on a person’s work and communication style preferences to help align them with the best position, before they have even met. This deeper-level understanding of candidates can also help organizations to better tailor remote onboarding options to new employees, once hired.
Organizations don’t get results, it’s the individual people working together in alignment who create success. In any work environment, team effectiveness requires good communication. Even in traditional, in-person work environments, teams can get bogged down in conflicts that result in subpar workflow, talent turnover, and even poor customer/client service. With remote or hybrid work environments, team communication and work performance challenges can be exacerbated by distance.
As some leaders already know, DISC profiles and Team Wheels can dramatically enhance the team learning curve and open up communications. When team members and leaders have greater self-awareness and an understanding of other styles, they can learn to adapt for greater effectiveness. For example, when a team member is more fast-paced and extroverted, others can learn to give them the highlights quickly before losing their attention. When approaching another team member who is more analytical, they will know to send them facts and data in advance of a meeting in order to make their discussion time more productive, and also to allow time to listen and answer questions. (To learn more about DISC behavioural styles, feel free to download a complimentary summary here.)
With more than half of employees on the lookout for a new job, the post-pandemic war for talent is real. The fact that people tend to quit their manager more than they quit the organization highlights just how crucial the role of a manager is for engagement and retention. Today, in a world of remote hiring and remote work, there are some workers who have never even met colleagues or their bosses in the flesh. But live or virtual, managers at all levels are now the most direct link between the talent and the organizational culture. Organizations with poorly equipped managers will drive higher turnover and find themselves losing the talent war.
On the other hand, organizations that have equipped managers with superior coaching skills and knowledge will have a competitive advantage in the talent war. Staff don’t want to be coached via cookie-cutter approaches mandated by head office. Instead, they want to be understood and to be given the responsiveness and support necessary to perform well in their jobs. The enhanced awareness provided by DISC equips managers to tailor their approach to the preferred unique styles of each team member for a superior coaching approach. For example, if manager Sarah (with a strong S style) consistently approaches remote team member Diana (a strong D Style) with calm tonality, slow-paced verbiage, and long pauses, it is possible that eventually Diana will be multi-tasking by searching job boards on her phone while Sarah continues talking. DISC profiles help managers and team members to understand their respective communication styles, improving results through greater engagement. As organizations move forward to post-pandemic workplaces, DISC online profiles can power the enhanced understanding, engagement, and retention of team talent. In helping you create a culture of team and management effectiveness, they can also create a path to victory in the talent war — helping you to Hire it, Coach it, and Keep it.
As Chief @ XLTeamwork.com Chuck is a Creative business leader/writer/husband/dad/real estate investor. Passionate about leadership, faith, family, entrepreneurship, and helping organizations understand and leverage their talent. Visit www.XLTeamwork.com for more information.
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