From the category archives: ASA University Blog
Education and Training
The best testimonials are those given directly from the source. Here is Pauline Mueller from Consolidated Supply Co. discussing their experience with ASA University's Advisory Service:
When Morrison Supply was creating its Branch Manager Training agenda, it looked to inject some relevant industry content. The event, which took place in Carrollton, TX this past January, focused on Financials, Operations, and Leadership concepts. Morrison President Stan Allen described it this way, “We like to invest in our people and develop them. At our event this year, the managers really loved the whole P&L side of things, and understanding the impact of discounts. But it was really the HR content that people are the most uncomfortable with and human nature is to avoid confrontation.”
So, the ASA-U Advisory team put together a presentation and activity for the Branch Managers to use on-the-job behavioral assessments as a way to teach the managers how they can hold people accountable to the role expectations. The documents were customized to Morrison and the managers watched videos of a Counter Sales person interacting with a plumber. They used the assessment forms to practice identifying the good and not-so-good behaviors from the Counter Sales person.
Allen continued, “ASA offers a great curriculum and to try and reinvent it ourselves would be crazy. Bringing in someone with Doug’s caliber really helped. In particular, the quantifiable measurement of the Counter Sales behaviors really helped our managers see how it could be done.”
To illustrate this, each manager could base course selections on things they saw and heard from the employee on a first-hand basis. This helped them see the buy-in from the employee to participate in training would be greatly increased. It also removed some of the discomfort Allen referred to since managers could refer to the observable behaviors they just witnessed when discussing needed behavioral improvements.
If you're interested in learning more about ASA-U's Advisory Service and what they can do for you go to the ASA-U ADVISORY SERVICE page, or contact Doug Dillon.
Are your future leaders ready to take the next step-up in your company? For current and future leaders, the Master of Distribution Management (MDM) Certification Program is all about empowering employees to be the best leaders they can be for your company. The MDM Program provides the skills to learn and lead with confidence. LEARN MORE about the MDM Program and how it can help train your leaders today.
Millennial professionals aren't necessarily seeking a senior title out of the gate; they just want to feel empowered to lead.
"Millennials are more engaged and productive if you let them own their role, drive results and feel like a leader. Clearly communicate their career paths [to them]. Identify employees who are willing to take on extra assignments and provide them with career coaching and mentorship, customized to the individual." – Kyle Borchardt
Read the FULL ARTICLE.
No law requires business owners to have written job descriptions for the positions in their companies. They take time to write — and time is precious for businesses. On the other hand, job descriptions can be very useful. Job descriptions are the result of analysis — the process of identifying and determining the particular duties and requirements and the relative importance of these duties for a given position. Did you know that ASA University offers free, customizable, job descriptions for its members? Visit ASA University to find out more!
To Read the Full Article: CLICK HERE!
It’s all the rage right now in the media and in leadership forums and discussion groups to talk about how to ‘engage’ Millennials in the workforce, to ensure we’re able to capitalize on their strengths and abilities, while embracing their differences in worldview, approach, and values compared with other generations they work alongside of.
Complaining about Millennials is in vogue and business leaders are supposedly struggling to ‘engage’ Generation Y and make them productive. Corporate recruiters and business leaders claim that 20-somethings are unprepared and difficult to manage. Again and again, commentators say they’re just too narcissistic, solipsistic and entitled for the working world. If you want to manage and retain Gen “Me”, Gen “We” or whatever you feel like calling the generation entering the workforce, stop trying to engage them.
‘Engage’ is a vague and loaded buzzword—is this Star Trek or a business? You can engage an opponent, engage an audience and get engaged, but how in the world do you measure your success at ‘engaging’ Millennials within a business?
CLICK HERE to Read the Entire Article from Forbes
“Winning is habit. Unfortunately, so is losing.”
- Vince Lombardi
How would others describe the performance of your team? Would they refer to your team “the A team”? Or are they compared to the Los Angeles Clippers (winning percentage: .362)?
In either case, here are 8 things you can do to boost the performance of your team:
1. Invest in your team's development.
2. Pick 'A' players and onboard them.
3. Walk the talk - Be a role model.
4. Provide meaningful work.
5. Make sure they have clear goals and expectations.
6. Create a motivating environment.
7. Do an honest assessment of your team.
8. Create a team.
To Read the Full Article: CLICK HERE
We didn’t fall out of the womb knowing all we need to know about life. And, as much as gray hair and 15 or 20 or 25 years on the job rightly earns us respect from our peers, it doesn’t allow us to contribute the same amount of value indefinitely into the future. Employees need to adapt to the changes and sharpen their skills to meet the needs of tomorrow’s customers. If we don’t think today’s customers are changing, all we need to do is hang-out with our competitors, and watch what a smidgeon more innovation, or service, or value does.
Click Here to Read the Full Article!
Many organizations today have established a set of guiding principles called “Core Competencies” that help
place focus on some of the most important priorities. Some call them Core Competencies, others call them
“Values” and still others have derivations of those two. For the purposes of discussion, we’ll refer to the
concepts as Core Competencies in this narrative.
Core Competencies have a similar function to a Mission Statement. They set the tone and communicate to
employees, customers, vendors, and communities a set of behavioral expectations. The difference between
the two is that employees can be evaluated on their performance against the Core Competencies whereas
that is not typically done with a Mission Statement.
Click here to read the Full Article.
Here are the Top 10 things to Consider when rolling out your new learning initiatives:
1) Create a TRAINING BRAND.
Call it what you want, but make it memorable in both word and look. Include it in internal correspondences.
2) Message from SENIOR LEADERSHIP.
3) Focus on MANAGERS first
4) Start a PILOT group of users
5) Deploy LEARNING KIOSKS in all branches
6) Create an email blast and posters to be displayed in common areas
7) Schedule User Webinars to demonstrate login, search, registrations, etc.
8) Integrate with Performance Management
9) After launch, show successes of early-adopters by communicating stories of
people who are seeing value:
10) Benchmark Externally
Click Here to Read the Entire Article.
Eastern Industrial Supplies, Inc. (Eastern), headquartered in Greenville, South Carolina, has come up with a best practice for recognizing the achievement of their employees, to encourage them in their pursuit of additional training, as well as to encourage others to pursue their own training track through ASA University. At review meetings held quarterly throughout the company, awards recognition is first on the agenda, including Senior leadership recognizing employees who have achieved their training goals through ASA University, who are presented with a framed Certificate of Achievement, individually customized per employee.
Certificates coming directly from the company tend to have a more positive impact on employees, affirming that the company takes a personal interest in their achievements. According to one Eastern Inside Sales Representative, “Being recognized and awarded a certificate upon completion of ASA University is a good reminder of the kind of appreciation given when one puts in significant time and hard work to a particular task. It continues to motivate me to give 100%, knowing that I am appreciated for the time and commitment that I am putting in. ASA helped me to become more confident with my work, and I am continuing to use the knowledge gained on a daily basis.”
Eastern has designed their certificates that highlight the designated track the employee has successfully completed. The company’s logo is prominently displayed at the top of the certificate, with the employee’s name and position, as well as a listing of courses completed, evenly displayed. Kip Miller, President and CEO, signs each certificate to give it that final personal touch. Certificates are designed and presented to employees to let them know that the company proudly recognizes their achievements, and taking it a step further, presents them in a suitably attractive frame for employees to proudly display, if they so choose.
By presenting the certificates at the beginning of each meeting, the company is publicly recognizing and rewarding employees for their hard work in front of their colleagues. This, in turn, encourages other employees to either complete their training, and for some, to get started on their own training track.