Eye How-The Cost of Poor Morale

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Photo:Vision West Inc

The main topic of people discussion today seems to be- How is your job? How many people got laid off in your company? Are you looking? If people still have a job, they complain about the overload of work, the lack of recognition they are not getting from leadership and a general poor morale toward work. Poor morale effects every business, and needs to be addressed consistently in all business operations, especially in these competitive times.

Eye Bogglers

  • 66% of US workers who call in sick at the last minute do so for other reasons than physical illness.
  • 13% call in sick to due to stress
  • 13% call in sick to to ‘Entitlement Mentality’
  • 30% of UK workers claim never to be thanked for their personal contribution at work.
  • The Gallup Organization estimates that there are 22 million actively disengaged employees costing the American economy as much as $350 billion dollars per year in lost productivity including absenteeism, illness, and other problems that result when employees are unhappy at work
  • The nation’s largest employers estimate that unscheduled absenteeism costs their businesses more than $760,000 per year in direct payroll costs, and even more when lower productivity, lost revenue, and the effects of poor morale are considered (“CCH 2007 Unscheduled,” 2007)

Consequences of Poor Morale

  • Decreased Productivity
  • Increased rates of absenteeism and costs associated with that
  • Increased conflicts in the work environment.
  • Increased patient complaints and dissatisfied consumers
  • Increased employee turnover and costs associated with hiring and training optical staff.

Reasons for Poor Morale:

  • Poor leadership- arguments between staff and or management, supervision demanding or not strong enough.
  • Lack of job security- due to a negative event, such as a firing, the companies financial health.
  • Not feeling important-opinions don’t matter- feels under appreciated
  • Not being able to improve their current position- didn’t receive a promotion, raise
  • Working Conditions-too much or too little work, poor environment,

The Optical Challenge

  • Creating a employee friendly culture with buy-in to company goals and needs
  • Cultivating an employee desire to do a good job

Tips to Address Morale in a Group or Staff Meeting

#1. Issue of Raises, commissions, profit sharing
Gather all employees and itemize expenses that went into attracting customers:
Take $100 and deduct what it cost to do business:

  • Advertising
  • Rent
  • Mistakes
  • Discounts
  • Health Insurance
  • Phone
  • Maintenance
  • Materials
  • Cost of Goods
  • Labor
  • Returns
  • Spiff program
  • Close outs
  • Conventions
  • Royalties
  • Warranties

#2 Address the leadership issue: Set up monthly meeting with all employees to address concerns about leadership and ways to overcome morale issues. Implement systems to reward and appreciate staff.

#3. Address the job security: Purpose is to explain negative impacts and how it effects morale. Provide for all eyecare staff common goals and performance measurements. Speak pro-actively about improvements and what has to be accomplished.

  • Eyecare business overview
  • How you make money
  • How you measure progress and production
  • How employees effect  the bottom line
  • Optical Competition and how it effects your office
  • Your focus and goals over the next couple of years
  • Focus on the ones that matter to the company
  • Establish cost saving measures

Overcoming poor morale is about communicating with your staff and managers, setting goals, establishing priorities to maximize productivity and patient relations.

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