Best Buy’s Results Only Work Environment Deserves High Marks. Here’s Why
Huge cuts in turnover.
Huge increases in productivity.
Those are the results reported by the departments of Best Buy that have focused on having people achieve work milestones rather than caring where the employees are when they get the work done. Many hardly ever show up for work.
The focus is on results and for many of the tasks needed completed at the home offices of Best Buy and now they are not.
With the change, employees love working for Best Buy. How do they know? Well when high turnover rates plummet to near 0 that is a pretty good indicator.
I can’t tell you how many times I have counseled CEO’s and Presidents moaning about otherwise outstanding employees not being able to consistently get to work at a prescribed time.My advice always is have clear definition of what needs to be done and when and then leave them alone.
Best Buy’s new rules are:
Don’t waste my time.
Don’t waste your time.
Don’t waste the company’s money.
Does the ultimate flexible schedule work for everyone? Well there are a few jobs where I have not figured it out. For example, I am writing this 40,000 feet in the air and I don’t think airlines can operate with pilots, flight attendants, mechanics and airport support showing up when they feel like it or not at all.
If you have abused your lifestyle and are scheduled for bypass surgery at 7AM in the morning, I don’t think you want to be prepped and then find your doctor decided to sleep in or go play golf.
Buying food at a grocery store or restaurant could be a challenge if the place is not open because people who operate those stores decide to go fishing.
But maybe there is more flexibiliy than what we think. What if there were an extra number of people employed and the staff worked it out. For example: Hey Judy I don’t feel like working this evening could you help me out? Judy says sure and the staffing for the restaurant is fine. The employees worked it out. Now if you are a store manager and you want some coverage the day after Thanksgiving, maybe your thinking is not in sync with the goal.
Before you start with the “but we cannot afford any extra staff” argument I ask you what does your turnover cost you?
I was in a long line at an “Oh My God” fast food restaurant (OK it was Burger King where they suck me in with their purported Angus steak burger that I like – hey Warren Buffet and Bill Gates like the value meal so back off.) To the point! The line was long and since I frequent this particular Burger King while working with a client near there, I cannot help it but I simply ask – what the hell is wrong here? The answer is always the same. This location like a multitude of other locations just like it pay their employees near minimum wage, their turnover is about 3000% a year and their lost sales are about $2,000 per day. By the way that is three quarters of a million dollars. I estimate one location leaves about $200,000 of profit on the table because of turnover and lost sales. I am I right – absolutely.
So Best Buy understand the cost of turnover and they apparently understand the importance of no comprise to achieving defined performance goals. I hope Best Buy continues to have huge success with this program. My only question is from a competitve advantage point of view, I have no idea why they let this program be published by Business Week and others. I would have advised leaving their competitor in a bigger cloud of dust before acknowledging the success of this program.
Be well and prosper,
Steve Pohlit has more than 20 years experience running very large and medium sized companies. Steve now consults personally with clients to design and implement processes that will deliver improved business performance for the long term. Most projects are self-funding within 90 days. The client then experiences a very high return on investment. Learn more about the process of Increasing Profits by 30% or More In 90 Days or Less by visiting http://www.stevepohlit.com or you can call 727-587-7871 and speak with Steve directly.