At Kimberly-Clark, ‘Dead Wood’ Workers Have Nowhere to Hide
It used to be that corporations provided workers a job for life, in exchange for modest efforts producing marginal products. Today, that has changed, product quality is much higher, and for corporations to be profitable they must hire highly productive workers.
These last vestigial paternalistic firms, continue to slow the process. The yet unlearned lesson is that American corporations are at least 10 - 20% overstaffed at the management level.
"In 2015, Kimberly-Clark retained 95% of its top performers. Among the employees whose work was rated “unacceptable” or “inconsistent,” 44% left the company voluntarily or were let go. Ms. Gottung said she is “pretty pleased” that low-performer turnover has been rising."
And among the more paternalistic firms the numbers are more likely 20% - 30%.
"'When I started with the company, we were very conflict-averse, very oriented towards consensus,” she said. “And now it’s ‘I care enough about you to tell you the truth.’ ”
American business since the 1960s has moved smartly into a more feminine consensus, cooperative alignment, this was likely necessary, but has obviously gone too far. Business today needs to regain a solid cadre of tough, no nonsense, clear thinkers who can put the brakes on inane money wasting ideas, and focus on the bottom line, making the highest quality products, or services which meet peoples daily needs. This is the service people want and need from the marketplace, not foo foo feel good bollocks.
Few corporations today appear ready for the next shift, that being the move from employee driven companies to independent contractor driven companies. The Uber model is likely going to begin to infiltrate the corporate sector. Expect corporations to be hidebound, and resistant even though the benefits will be obvious, the cost reductions huge, and in many cases the employees not just willing but supportive.
Obvious areas for change are legal, accounting, marketing, sales, etc. We do not seem ready for these changes yet, but they will come. Corporation size will shrink, and more former employees will find more job satisfaction working for themselves, with the corporation as client than for the corporation directly.
This might take awhile!