Tips for the newly hired Gen Y

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Entering the workplace can be intimidating for a first timer. Often, a new millennial employee would not know where to begin his or her journey. This is particularly worse if the company does not have a structured on-boarding program.

The first thing you ask for on your first day at work is for the on-boarding program. For the first time employees, the on-boarding program is a set of activities designed to get a newly hired person to quickly be productive in the workplace. This can include a brief background of the company, the key leaders, critical HR policies and procedures, walk-through on where to get information when needed, tour of the office and so on.

After the on-boarding has been accomplished, the very first question you ask your manager for is your latest job profile or job description. You need to read this very carefully as it narrates your job and the activities it entails. You need to clearly know what is expected from you. A former Citibank executive used to tell us “In order to do a good job, you first need to understand what is expected from you. Do not guess.” Ask your manager what he or she expects from you.

Start observing which of your colleagues actually deliver on their commitment and which ones are simply full of lip service. You need to stay away from the nay sayers or negative ones. These people will drain your energy with their negative vibes. Make sure you keep close to the high potential ones and get their help when needed.

Do not forget to dive into and understand your KPI’s and goals. You need to know how your performance will be measured at the end of the year. You need to understand what your goals are and plan how to reach them. Your ability to work as a team and deliver your goals has a big influence on your career in the company. It will also influence your pay scale and bonus.

Make sure you try and get along with everyone. At this point you will be feeling your way around the workplace and the last thing you need is someone who dislikes you. Let me make it very clear right now – no matter how bright you may think you are, you cannot win in the workplace if you are alone.

There you have it. Please feel free to pass this on to your friends and colleagues.

All the best in your new venture.

Is your company obsessed with your customers?

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Let me take a few minutes to share lessons from an interesting interview with the founder of Amazon.com. A few minutes into the discussion at the Internet Association Gala 2017, Jeff Bezos, shares the secrets of Amazon’s success. The beauty behind the success of most great companies is that the reasons are so simple. The secrets are so obvious, you can hardly consider them secrets. Amazons secret sauce is the same.

Jeff outlined a few very simple principles behind Amazon’s success. These principles earned him the title of the richest man in America for the first-time.

1) Amazons culture does not simply focus on customer experience. They turn this statement into a passion with a focus on ‘Customer Obsession.’ There are different models that different companies use instead like; competitor obsession, product obsession, industry obsession and so on.

2) Even if customers are happy, they still want something better. It is Amazon’s job to constantly invent new things that provide an even better customer experience.

3) Don’t focus on the short term, have a long-term view. Have a five-year view. Don’t just look at having a good next Quarter. He mentioned that quarter results are already baked. Quarter results are based on management decisions years ago. Focusing on the future changes the way you plan and focus your energy.

4) Experimentation and failing is supported in Amazon. Innovation goes together with customer obsession.

5) Identify 2-3 big ideas and force great execution. For Amazon, it’s low prices, fast delivery, and vast selection. Ten years from today no customer in his right mind would go to Amazon and request a slower delivery. No customer will request for higher prices and less selection. These are obvious things. Big ideas are often so obvious that we don’t see them.

6) Most overnight success takes about ten years. Hard work and perseverance is needed to create an ‘overnight’ success.

Companies cannot claim that their Invention is disruptive. New products and services are not and cannot be disruptive. Only customer acceptance is disruptive. Why are customers going to like it? Why would customers buy your product or service?

Lots of people dispense advise and tips. However, when the tip comes from someone valued at $109 Billion running a 22-year-old company valued at $702.5 Billion then one thing is for certain. The tip may be worth thinking about from the perspective of our own companies.