An owner’s dispatches from the front lines.
I recently met a management consultant and business author who asked me if I had an “employee of the month” program. I said I did, at which point he reprimanded me for the error of my ways. His argument was that it was a waste of time and was actually counterproductive; only one person wins, and the rest are resentful. My managers and I actually considered that before we started the program, but the conversation with the consultant, Aubrey C. Daniels, got me thinking about it again. As I have gotten older, I have become more open-minded about recognizing that my way might not be the best way.
We name an employee of the month in only one of my companies, the custom framing factory, where I have the most employees working together in the same place at the same time. I have about 30 employees at the factory who do everything from making frames and cutting mats to working in shipping and receiving. We have a meeting every Friday morning for 10 to 15 minutes to announce birthdays and anniversaries, review the progress of the week and discuss what is happening in the company. On the first Friday of the month we
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