Rick Phelps

Synchronous Solutions

Hiring Great People“We only got one response to our ad for an experienced Templater, but like you said, we only NEEDED one good candidate and man, was he a great candidate! We also got four candidates to our ad for an inexperienced person we could train to become a Templater, AND we didn’t have to wade through any resumes that were just ‘checking the box’ on unemployment requirements. It was just as you said it would be! My team is thrilled with the ActionCOACH Hiring Process and thrilled with the two new trainees we hired who start next week! And that’s what I feel like expressing,” stated Roger with a huge grin on his face.

“Thank you, Roger!” responded Coach Rick. “What I feel like expressing is, clearly you have more to tell about the hiring process and how you came to hire TWO trainees. I can’t wait to hear the rest of the story! And that’s what I feel like expressing.”

“Thank you, Coach! You are right, there is a lot more to the story. We actually made an offer to the experienced candidate. Everyone was impressed with his industry experience, in fact, too impressed. Turns out, all he was doing was using us to leverage his current employer for more money. That became abundantly clear, after he first accepted our offer, then when the time came to start, reneged on the offer, saying his current employer matched our offer.” Roger was in full story-telling mode as he continued.

“After he reneged, we regrouped and did an After-Action Review as you have taught us, to look at the process we had followed, and we learned a real important lesson. We hadn’t actually followed the process! Digging into what we had done, we realized we all got enamored with his experience and skills, and completely ignored his ‘character’ – the part that was supposed to be our focus! Thinking back, there were clues we ignored that should have kept us from offering him the job in the first place – clues to his character and attitude that would have made him a bad fit at our company.

“So, we dodged a bullet, AND we made ourselves better prepared to handle the group interview with the four candidates with no experience. None of us were too sure about how a group interview was going to work, but we followed the process this time, and it was amazing! Two candidates stood out, both taking the opportunity to shine and show their character, their energy, and their enthusiasm for the opportunity.”

“Unable to decide which candidate was the superior candidate, our HR manager observed we could offer them BOTH jobs for about the same amount we offered the experienced candidate, so that is what the team decided to do!” concluded Roger.

“What a great story Roger,” exclaimed Coach Rick. “What are you going to do with the second candidate?”

“Here’s the best part. We are going to train them both in templating AND drawing, and perhaps later in programing, as well. This will allow us to grow and also cover vacations. A real Win-Win!” Roger concluded.

“Congratulations! So how can I best help you this week, Roger?” asked the coach.

“Well, now that we have TWO new  people to train, how can we best do that? What insights on employee on-boarding do you have for us?” 

“That’s a great question and topic for today. I am guessing you don’t have a training manual or operations manual for Template, CAD or Programming yet, is that correct?” asked Rick.

“You know us well,” chuckled Roger.

WIFLE“Alright, then part of their orientation/training is to document each of the processes, creating the ‘How-To’ manual for each of the jobs as they are trained in that job. There is no better person to capture the details of the process than someone who doesn’t already know it and is trying to learn it! With two people, one can video the training, while the other takes notes or is being trained.”

“That’s a great idea. We will definitely do that!” Roger was nodding as he took notes.

“One more thing I want to cover today,” continued the coach, “in two weeks’ time is the next 90-Day planning workshop. I want you to review your 3-Year and 1-Year plans to see how you are doing, and to make any updates to your objectives and goals. I also want you and your leadership team to go through the self-assessment of where the business is right now on all aspects of having a ‘Finished Business’ – a commercial, profitable enterprise that works without YOU, Roger! We can review that next week to make sure you are in the best shape to make the most out of the planning workshop.”

Roger was nodding and thinking as he answered, “Absolutely! We will get on that post haste – it’s time to get the rest of the team engaged in that process. So far it has only been me doing the assessments. This will give the rest of the team a clear picture of the work ahead of us.”

“Great, Roger! I think that is probably enough for today. What was the number 1 thing you got from today’s session?” asked Coach Rick.

“Use my new team members to write the operations manual! I love that solution!” Roger said as he signed out of the Zoom session.

Rick PhelpsContact Synchronous Solutions for more information about how the Synchronous Flow Operating System can transform your business, and to learn more about the ActionCOACH Executive Business Coaching offerings to help you build ‘A Commercial, Profitable Enterprise That Works Without YOU.’

Rick Phelps has been applying the concepts of Synchronous Flow to difficult industrial problems at dozens of businesses and organizations around the world, since the early 1980s.

In 2009, as Cleveland Cliffs’ Director of Continuous Improvement, Rick took on a failing Lean Six Sigma organization, refocused their improvement work using Synchronous Flow, and created a shop floor, engagement driven, continuous improvement process that Cliffs credits with creating a sustained $100M per year reduction in production costs.

Now, back working with Ed Hill at Synchronous Solutions, Rick is once again applying Synchronous Flow in the countertop industry, and having a blast! Rick lives with his family in the Cleveland, Ohio area.