I still hear many stories about companies treating their employees like commodities. I personally know some extremely talented people who are being used and abused by their managers simply because they think they can get away with it in this economy. Having people work night and day and at your beck and call puts more money in the pockets of these very short-term thinking types. Or, so they think. If they can operate with a drastically reduced head count that means a bigger bonus for them.
I also still watch companies cut back on the level and quality of interaction with their customers in order to save money. In my experience that type of management occurs when the CEO is really an accountant who never should have made it to the top position.
“Times are tough. We can’t afford the client appreciation program any more.” for example.
This type of thinking is going to bite many of these companies and managers in the ass someday soon. I call them managers because they sure as hell aren’t leaders.
The two greatest assets your company has are your employees and your customers. You don’t have one without the other.
Take them for granted and they will leave. The very best ones have probably already left or are making plans right now. That goes for both your employees and customers. Employees are tired of doing the work of two or three or more without the compensation. Hell, without as much as a thank you.
Your customers are also experiencing the same difficult economic times. Now is the time to do everything you can to help them. You need to listen to them and let them know you understand what they said. You need to be there for them if you want them to be there for you. The entire concept of short-term profits to satisfy stockholders and multimillion dollar bonuses for managers who are clueless about leadership is one of the biggest reasons this country is in the mess we have right now.
You need to let both your employees and customers know they are valued and that you appreciate them.
They are your greatest assets.
Treat them that way.