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Need to build your organisation’s personality? December 21, 2010

Posted by aglakadam in aglakadam, Management.
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Being in the recruitment industry is a big source of management education for me. Recently we had arranged an interview for 10 fitter candidates ( ITI) for employment with one industrial unit. To my understanding the prospective recruiter was a decently renowned organization and a good employer as known to me. However on the day of interview only 5 out of the 10 candidates reported for interview. We went into the follow-up and research mode to know the reason why 50% of the candidates did not attend the interview. After a lot of effort and counseling the secret was reveled.

What these candidates divulged was in contrast to my understanding of the scenario. The unanimous remark was “This is not a good company to work with”. Logically & spontaneously my next question to them was “Why do you think so?” The answer which almost all of them gave was all the more confusing. They said, “we know it” or “we have heard of it” or “some one who left the company has informed this to us”….

The question is from where did the manpower pool in the market develop such an image of the organization? Point to be noted is that, this particular view about the organization comes from one of the blue collar level workers – the ones who are expected not to be very well informed. The better informed resources may have their own reservations about the organization.

Yes this is all about the personality of the organization. Personality is to your business what garnishing is to food: it’s what excites and inspires one to consume. Even if the management has all the good intentions in terms of policy and strategy, what actually gets executed in the field transforms into the ‘personality’ of the organization. Personality of an organization is summation of all information that is seen, sensed & felt from outside using the available source of responses. From what you advertise and how you advertise to how you treat your out going & incoming employees – all these contributes to the germination of ‘word of mouth’ sources of personality instigating bites.
Personality management for an organization is like an acid test. It is very important for every organization until unless the business in which it is, is very unique in terms of technology or the solutions offered. Your organizations personality is that distinguishing edge which can help you attract better manpower in the industry. Not just manpower hiring, if your organization has a well trust worthy personality you may comfortably charge a premium on the products or services sold by you. Actually the personality of your organization differentiates you with the rest of the world.

In one of a talk-session I was addressing the chairpersons & HR managers of first generation evolved manufacturing units ( mostly SME’s) on manpower & recruitment issues. Mostly the leaders had a compliant that they are not able to attract talent even though they are ready to pay handsome salaries. On review we found that majority of the units had messed up with their manpower advertisements. A small 10 cm by 10 cm advertisement contained almost 10 plus vacancies advertised! The space was very cluttered & vacancies could not be identified in a catchy manner.

To get the message conveyed easily I used a real life example. I asked all of them about the car they would like to use for business purpose, mostly their response was a large size car. When it comes to their comfort, they preferred to purchase a sedan or a large space car; after all it was the matter of their image in the society. It was not just comfort but also status which was an important criterion for them to select a large size car. Same actually applied to the vacancy advertisements – these should be used by the organizations not just for communicating the vacant positions & inviting applications but also to develop the organizations ‘personality’ in the target segment! Unlike a cluttered job advertisement the large size specious communication with details about the organizations goals & projects along with the vacancies goes a long way in establishing its personality.

Infosys is an excellent example which I like to quote. Recently my niece –a fresh IT engineer got a job from two companies : one is Infosys and the other is as well a decent name in the industry. The salary offered by Infosys is less compared to what is being offered by the other unit. The joining decision of the candidate is still lopsided and swings in favor of Infosys! The only reason why she is joining Infosys is that “ Infosys has a distinct reputation & there is so much air of excitement about the company that makes me pretty confident to join them”! I recall in the previous decade Infosys has invested a huge chunk into the personality building exercise. From time to time there have been various advertisements from Infosys conveying more about its people and less about its needs! I am sure readers will recall at least one such job advertisement

Personality of an organization is just not about the advertisements or the logo & punch line text or the CSR ( corporate social responsibility) etc. Personality of the organization is the belief with which people look at the organization. It has to do with the relationships the organization has created in its universe. Relationships matter – be it with their current or past employees, the vendors & suppliers, customers, stock holders etc. You never know either of your stakeholders son or daughter or any relative could become a prospective employee or a word of mouth personality creator for your organization! People decide to go ahead or not to go ahead in relationship with the organization, either as an employee or a service provider, only after evaluating and assessing the personality of the organization. If it’s a reputed & dependable personality, money does not matter much!

So what personality are you creating for your organization?

Ajit Varwandkar

The author is Managing Director,
FS Management (I) Pvt. Ltd.
can be contacted on : info@fsindia.in



1. vinod - December 21, 2010

Wonderful Ajit. I think it should be an eye-opener for many heads of organisations.

aglakadam - December 21, 2010

Thanks Vinod Ji for your remark, hopefully, at least a few of the head’s do ponder over it!

2. LopezColdv - December 29, 2010

I love browsing your website because you can always bring us new and awesome stuff, I think that I should at least say a thank you for your hard work.

– Henry

aglakadam - December 30, 2010

Thanks a lot Henry, Happy new year to you

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