Engaging employees is synonymous with retaining employees, and engaging employees is on the forefront of moving companies forward.   In our most recent podcast with Eric Chester, we talked about how to both manage and retain employees.  Eric is the author of On Fire at Work: Great Companies Ignite Passion in Their People Without Burning Them Out, his best-selling book that talks about getting employees to “work harder, perform better, and stay longer.”  Eric has delivered more than 2,000 keynotes to great companies all over the world, including Harley Davidson, McDonald’s, Sprint, Great Clips, Wells Fargo, and Subway. He has spoken on three different continents and is a 2004 inductee into the National Speakers Association’s acclaimed CPAE Speaker Hall of Fame.

The concept of employee retention has largely evolved over time.  Decades ago, employers, or even employees, didn’t have a thought about engagement or about being “happy” at work. The relationship between employers and employees was a transactional relationship where you just do your job and get paid. We have now come to realize that money isn’t the only motivating factor in why an employee chooses to stay. Employees are now focusing more on the experience. In order to keep employees engaged, companies should reach out to their employees. By doing so, they learn the employees’ points of view and are able to create a better workplace.

Eric spoke about his experiences as a high school teacher and youth speaker. These taught him about talking to individuals in the trenches. By conversing with these individuals and learning what their thoughts are, he was able to inspire them. Over time, he became interested in generational studies and wrote the book Employing Generation Why?.  The book was a huge success, and he companies started asking for his help on managing employee engagement. When he works with companies, he follows the same strategies of talking to employees in the trenches.  He would take excerpts and present these to the management.  The management will then learn what they can do to improve the workplace.  Eric emphasized that with most of these organizations there are really no employee retention strategy.  From his On Fire at Work book, he explained that there are seven cultural pillars that employees evaluate their jobs. Money is only one of them and is far from the only assurance of keeping an employee in a company.  He further added that retention is a by-product of hiring the right people and treating them the way they want to be treated. Employee engagement problems are solved when companies put an effort into making a better workplace.

Companies only get out what they put into their workforce. Listen to the full podcast to learn more on how talking to employees and knowing their points of view makes a better workplace.  Reach out and initiate change in your workplace.

We would like to thank Eric for his time and enthusiasm. We encourage everyone to get a copy of his book On Fire at Work: Great Companies Ignite Passion in Their People Without Burning Them Out and to check out his website at www.ericchester.com.


Josh Drean: Hello listeners and welcome back to Forging Employee Experience. I’m Josh Drean and joined here with Alexander Noren.

Alexander Noren: Hey everybody! Thanks for coming out.

Josh Drean: And I’m so so very excited for our guest today because he’s one of my good friends, he’s a leading expert in this field. We are talking about Eric Chester, how are you Eric?

Eric Chester: I’m dynamite if I were any better, I’d be twins.

Alexander Noren: And we’d have you both of you on the show by the way.

Josh Drean: Let me just brag about you a little bit to our listeners. Eric Chester, he is really the go to expert on finding, engaging and keeping great employees. He is the best selling author of On Fire at Work : Great Companies Ignite Passion in their People without Burning them Out. Such a great title of a book by the way. That is exactly what we are trying to do with some of our employees to help them feel more engaged experience at work. He has delivered keynotes more than 2000 times in great companies all over the world. He has spoken for Harley Davidson, McDonald’s, Sprint, Great Clips, Wells Fargo, and Subway. Let me also mention that he has spoken in 3 different continents and is the 2004 Inductee into the National Speakers Associations acclaimed hall of fame which I know from experience is very hard to do not that I actually made it there but as one thinking about it. It’s quite the achievement so we are so grateful for having you on the show. Is there anything else that our listeners need to know more about?

Eric Chester: I tell you after an introduction like that, I cannot wait for you to hear what I got to say.

Alexander Noren: We’re all ears.

Eric Chester: I can’t wait, I can’t wait.

Josh Drean: Tell us a little about the way you do around Employee Engagement. You are the expert and so how do you go into these companies and what do you say?

Eric Chester: You know Josh, I’m a former high school business teacher and a football coach. The teaching part back in the day was called occasionally credentialed. My students in my class have jobs. They learn about business while their in class and then they had jobs in retailing, restaurants, hospitality, grocery stores and convenience stores et cetera. I was responsible for these students to get a grade so I had to stay in touch with their employer and manager to find out if they are getting a variety of experience et cetera et cetera. Well as the parents checking in because you know, the parents are concerned with the kids getting good education around school as much some other students because again they are working part time so it was a school to work transition. Another one from that, being a speaker for youths. So I spend about 10 years standing in gymnasiums talking to high school kids, trying to prepare them for the next step. What is this school thing mean and how do you get from here to there when you don’t know there is? This career is pretty hard to figure out. I did 1500 highschool presentations every state in the US and all the provinces in Canada just around up working with youth and then somewhere along the way, I realize I’m preparing the youth for the future but everybody keeps talking about Generation X. People are struggling and I started getting interested in Generalizational Studies about the same time getting calls from companies and organizations and said, “Hey, we are having trouble. We just don’t understand it this new Gen Xers or Generation X.” I started writing my own book and the book was called Employing Generation Why spelled W-H-Y, as in “Why do I have to work in nights and weekends”, “why do I have to wear that stupid looking uniform”, and “Hey man, I’ve worked here for 3 days so why can’t I have your job.” The book took off and I wind up getting contacted by so many different companies and organizations that were originally struggling with recruiting, training, managing, motivating what now is referred to as Millennials. I call them Generation Why that went 8-9 years and then when I started working with this companines I got more and more knowledgeable in terms of the tactics and strategies that seem to work to engaging in the workplace. To make them want to come to work, to want them show up early and pull their pants up, give the kind of respect they should to their employer blah blah blah. Now, it’s just been a process aggregating great ideas that I get from working with these companies and organizations and figuring out what is and what’s not working in terms of how do you find and keep great people, how do you develop and that’s how this work of mine is all about. I only speak to audiences, compromise of people that calls by. So if you are struggling with employees and BAM, I’m the guy who comes in and helps you try to figure them out. Not just young people, we now are dealing with young people, retirees who didn’t have enough stage and now there are multiple genders that are identifying them now and we’ve got different ethnicities and all of these hogg pogg that doesn’t come in to the workforce the way they did back in the day and the day, many employers remember themselves coming in from the workforce anyway that’s a long winded question to answer you ask me. How did you winded up in Employee Engagement? That’s it.

Josh Drean: That’s so organic. I love how you did it because you started finding the problem and asking the WHY questions and then finding the solutions and let me just tell my listeners, my favorite technique you used and I think this is so genius, keep in mind listeners, Eric Chester has been speaking with all of the managers of Subway and all of their top executives staff. He’ll get up there and he will go, beforehand, interview some of their employees in the trenches. He just asking them, “Do like your job? How do you feel about work?” and then he shows those videoclips to the executive staff in his keynotes and be like, “Do you know what your employees are saying about working for subway?” I think its just being awesome and natural feel to it because sometimes I think they forget what it’s like to be that person making the sandwich. What is the results or what is the end goal there?

Eric Chester: Maybe it comes out of insecurity, Josh. When I started, it was enough to say, “Look I’ve been in the trenches for 10 years with highschool and some college but mostly highschool students so I know what they think. Let me tell you how they think. When you get older, right? I started in 2000-2001 when Millenials is a word nobody knew that was. I was kind of the seminal guy their talking about of this emerging generation. It was enough back then to say here’s who they are and here’s what makes them different but then people wanted more and more actionable ideas, right? So many people jumped into the play and started adding their phrase, “look at millenials and here’s what make them different all four generations in the workplace. I think what is common type presentation. I wanted to take mine in a different direction to become more actionable. In that process I grew older believe or not I’m 20 years older than I was back in 1989. It somehow worked that way. So I went from being this guy that had my ear to the ground and then the trenches with young people to well went to study and still tries to stay in contact with them. It’s kind of, look I can stand up here and tell your from an academic standpoint what millenials think. I’m not a guy that regurgitate a bunch of statistics to come down from ridiculous questionnaires and all these forms and studies I just pull the whole thing. I’m the trenches guy, I go up and I talk to  people and ask them questions. It became really important to my audiences rather than hearing me just saying, “Here’s what they think” why don’t I let them tell the audience what they think. So I went in, started interviewing people and interviewing them on iphone having them asked series of questions and finding some provocative answers. Usually what it is, you think this, well let’s see. BAM! Then someone comes on and you’re like WOW I didn’t think about that. I don’t think they felt that way, so that what helps. That what helps the presentation so different, and nobody else does it.

Alexander Noren: It sounds that this type of style, you get at least unique responses. Is that fair to say?

Eric Chester: Alexander, phenomenally unique responses. You don’t know, there was a show way you guys were not stillborn, back on this thing we called Television Network Television. There was a show, Link Letter. It was this guy, he went out and talked to kids. Little kids sitting on a stool and his whole program was called “Kids say the darndest thing” It was so cute. With just a talking head, interviewing kids, sitting on a stool and they’d asked him about various things. Everybody liked that and everybody at that time was wow, how neat, how cute and they make you laugh. Remember the AT&T commercial that was above 8 years ago, I think that guy in Saturday Night Live now Durk whatever his last name is. He did this commercials were he’d go in and sit on these small table and guys would start talking about and maybe ask him questions same things like Kids say the darndest things. That kind of deal, you don’t know what is done scripted, what people is going to say. When I go in to talk to young people teenagers, hey look I don’t work for this company, I’ve nothing to do with this company and I usually get an introduction through management and comes to a corporate office. Look I’m just here trying to help managers to deal with you better, right? Because I’m working with a burger chain. I’m just trying to help managers who all run stores like this and understand what their employees want. I’d like to ask you a few questions, you don’t have to answer. I’ll excerpt those things, try to keep them in short little burst and final find bites. Nothing you’re going to say is going to get you promoted and nothing you say here gets you fired. Its just between you and me and if you don’t want to answer questions, no one’s going to know. I’m not going to say , “Hey, this is Bobby Smith and I’m here in Little Arkansa and he lives in Elm Street” it’s not like that. They might know your name is Bobby and your 17 that’s it.

Alexander Noren: What are the some more compelling responses you’ve seen? Some of the responses that made you stop and thinking, “Wow, that’s profound, a nugget or an experience that this employee had having that all managers could really understand.

Eric Chester: Well Alexander, it’d be almost like asking if you’re Canadian, yeah. There are so many jokes that I don’t even remember any. Let me give you examples of my favorite clip. One time this one chain was having difficulty hanging on a management. Found out managers were leaving because they were tired of the schedules were being run, they’re like “Gosh, darn” We were covering. Because these young people they don’t come in on time, they leave, they don’t call in, you know whatever. We’re always covering for them, it’s driving us crazy. They were losing managers because managers were sick and tired of dealing scheduling issues. So I went in and ask this really attractive, bright, young gal. She’s probably 17 and, “Hey, tell me about the attendance policy here.” And she went on this thing like, “you know, today I was late, well kind of late. When your late, they kind of give you a frowny face sometimes. I mean, you know, it would depend who is working and depends if you have a good excuse, it’s okay.” This video clip is so iconic because you watch it and you turn around and go, this young, lively, energetic face has no idea of the attendance policy is. And they you asked the audience, if I the people who worked for you, what’s your attendance policy? Are they going to tell you? Do they know what to do? Half the time, we think they should but they don’t, right? So we blame them because they’re not showing up on time and always late. Let’s unpack that a little bit, what is you attendance policy? Because everybody know what exactly what to do and more importantly because I wrote this book, Employing Generation Why, do they know why it’s important not to be 5 minutes late even if its 5 minutes, Hey guess what they’re history. Teachers let them escape for coming in 5 minutes late everyday. What’s the big deal as long as they bring them a doughnut every Friday they’re fine with it. They don’t realise they show up 5 minutes late that means their co-worker, Jorgie, stayed to cover that shift. Now Jorgie, missed his bus so he’s not going to get home till 20 minutes from now and because he doesn’t get home for 20 minutes. He’s not going to be able to take his young son, Alexander, to the soccer tryouts. You know what, Alexander’s not going to make the soccer team this year. You know why? Because Jorgie wasn’t home. You know why? Because Jorgie needed you to be there. Because you weren’t there, it’s only 5 minutes to you, but you see how your actions affect other people? Now all of the sudden, “Oh my god.” They don’t get it. Because being on time is not enough. There’s no rationale behind that command because when there’s not a compelling reason, they don’t get it. To them, all of these is “Do as I say and not as I did it.” that doesn’t work.

Josh Drean: That’s right. Thats a practical approach to this idea of employee engagement. it seems that the reason in showing these clips and reason that we’re really getting in the trenches of what the experiences for these employees is because we want to help their managers create a culture and create policies that are fair. To help them work harder, perform better and stay longer in their job.

Eric Chester: That’s it, Josh. You just took the like right out of my website. Its working harder, performing better, and staying longer those 3 things that is actually copyrighted but anyway, that’s it. That’s what we’re doing.

Alexander Noren: You heard it first, we invented it.

Eric Chester: And that’s the goal, a goal that everybody wants. We not just talking frontline teenagers here, right? What people need to understand is if you’re not dealing with millennials or your not dealing with a change of frontline workforce then this could possibly work to executives. I worked at the organization two weeks ago in Denver and the organization, what were they meet. That’s not their headquarters, they have 12 offices around the world. They’re a global economic consultancy, the only people they hire are PhDs. You have got to have a PhD to get hired. So you’re 32-33 years of age by the time you begun to immense academic training, some of the finest institutions of the world; Standords, Harvard’s, MITs, Yales, Columbia, whatever. So they hire these economic PhD to do consulting and often times they brought in to testify in a legal battle. This intellectual property between Google and Samsung who gets brought in who has economic impact. Well, you can imagine the professional testimony it’s going to cost a fortune and that’s what these people do. They testify, they look at the economic impact et cetera. I had a meeting, a phone meeting with 12th Senior Partner Board Member who all run these offices across the country. I asked him what are you challenges, tell me what kind of issues you’re dealing when it comes to the PhDs you are hiring then and now. I wish I could have recorded the call because if I were done I would have played everyone of those comments and just eliminated the name of the organization and titled position, you would thought I was talking to managers in Burger King. It’s the same thing, these guys come in in day one, you put them to work on a Monday and they want Thursday afternoon off and then they don’t like the office you put them in, they are unprofessional when it comes to work. Right of the bat, you asked them to do something and said, “Hey, that’s really not my job, I’m more qualified than that.” All the issues that you hear about and when you start thinking about the team labor force, it has nothing to do with age. It has to do with the way people now enter the workforce, their thoughts, their beliefs, their attitude, the way they were raised. We’re talking about people who’ve seen their parents outsourced, right sized, down sized by the companies that sacrificed their careers to build. We got a free agent workforce that’s the mentality out there. Nobody’s going to join that company, “You know what, I put on my 40 years and I’ll retire with a gold watch and a pension and it’s all going to be okay.” Nobody thinks that anymore. You have a lot of the managers and when have you do them exactly how they were raised by their parents play that game. When I graduated from high school, it granted that I’m old, closed to being dead. When I graduated from high school, a guy in front of me and the guy at the back of me, we’re all friends. Went out alphabetically so Jim Chaplin was in front of me, Marty comes behind me right before we get our diplomas on our graduation day, Caplin goes around me and say, “What are you doing next year?” Marty goes, “ I got a job at the Post Office.” “How about you Cap?” “So I think my mom’s going to get me on the airline” They used the word “Get me on” which means what? Get on a conveyor belt. I’m going to jumped on this conveyor belt and I’m going to get hired and this airline with take care of me. This postal service, this will last, right? It’s just going to be that way, I’ll get on and pretty soon I’ll get a decent route and I’ll be able to drive my truck and have holidays off, have a nice pension and retire, get married, have a couple of kids that’s the way people used to think. You and I know people don’t think like that anymore. You guys, like you said, that’s not the way you thinking but that’s what your parents though. I can promise you that’s what your parents thought.

Josh Drean: They weren’t thinking about, it was like a contractual obligation when you got a job, you did a certain job and just how it was. There was no thought about employee engagement or happiness, its not asking who are you feeling at work? Its get the job done and I think we’ve evolved in the world today. Now its important because there are a lot more opportunities to these younger generation and it’s not about money so much as it is about the experience itself. What have you run into as you’re working with these corporations as far as to the workforce on who to get this done into please stay?

Eric Chester: Everyone says we have a retention problem, what’s a retention strategy? There’s no such thing because when it boils down to retention, “Oh no Josh is turning in his notes, what are we going to do?” there’s only one thing that they’re going to do. what’s that? Think about it, what are they going to do? All of a sudden they found out that your going to turning in your notes. If they want to keep you, what are they going to do at that point?

Alexander Noren: More money.

Josh Drean: They might say, yeah. More money.

Eric Chester: That’s it. Here’s the deal, it’s about the money thing then you’re missing the boat. The book you reference that i wrote on Firework, talks about 7 Cultural Pillars that everybody evaluates their jobs, their position when they go to work. Compensation is very much on that and some people that’s the only thing. Look my kids got to eat, I got to be able to fix my car. Okay, great! Compensation is important, and to some people it is the most important but not for everybody. You can’t tell millenials that it’s not important. Are you kidding me? We are a brand with 80 – 90 million people and say it’s important to them or not. Them, them who? Some say it’s the most important, some say I don’t care. I dont give a flying fuffluff, if I lived under a bridge if I can be just a DJ at night, they don’t care. Everybody’s different, everybody is individualized. Compensation is important, how important? I don’t know. But there are 6 other factors that go into making what this job really is.  So when I say retention, there’s no retention strategy. Retention is a by product if you hire the right people and you treat them the way they want to be treated. Not the way you want to try them, not the way you want to be treated, they way they want to be treated. If you hire the right people. Treat them the way you want to be treated. Retention goes away. You don’t have to worry about it. People aren’t going to live when they go, “Man, I really like it. I wake up in the morning and I love it when I pinch myself, I cant believe im doing this.”  Somebody’s going to come by, “Hey I can pay you more money to do this” Guess what, forget you. I’m living the dream. I could make a few suckles from you. This job right here, I love my boss, my co-workers. we have a great time, we have a fantasy football league, we go out and have beers on Friday afternoon. I really feel like im doing important work here. We are doing so much for our customers, we are putting back into the community makes me feel good everytime we crank out a widget by the way, i love the way this happens and that happens and if i need some advice, I got somebody there to help me and when I fall out of line someone’s giving me some structures and show me how to grow. They know somebody, I’m going to do this thing and they’re kind of teaching your along they way or at least give me some skills. There’s not way I’m leaving. i love it.

Alexander Noren: How does a company get there? I would think most of the organizations out there are not there yet. They are not considering this 7 pillars that you mentioned or anything really in regards to the underlying causes of these “Retention Problems” or engagement issues, right? How do they transition it? It seems like an almost impossible feat that completely shifts how an organization thinks about and how it treats its employees?

Eric Chester: Well, I’m going to tell you the answer here. The problems is this is going to be the last podcast that your listeners are going to listen to if they want to know. We just going to get the answer and then you guys will have to change the topic.

Josh Drean: The secrets have been revealed.

Eric Chester: We are going to nail it right here.

Alexander Noren: Let’s do it.

Eric Chester: Here’s the deal, so how does the company get there? They never stop trying. they look at those 7 Cultural Pillars and they go, “What are we going to do today to improve across these 7 pillars? How can we be better today than we were yesterday? If you ask yourself that everyday pick out one of them, let’s say atmosphere. We’re doing everything we can to make sure this is the kind of atmosphere people want to be. People want to feel safe while there here, are we providing the tools that they need, what is the temperature in here? Is it too hot too cold? The chairs that they are sitting, are they comfortable enough for them? “Hey Halloween is coming up, will there be a pumpkin on their desk when they come in or manufacturing. We are doing something for their kids, let them off a little early. What are we doing to create a better atmosphere? That’s one pillar. What are we doing for alignment in other words to be a value based company that they feel really good about working here. What are we doing for our community, for other people? What are doing besides just trying to make money? What are we doing to be the kind of place that the people that work here say, “It makes me feel good.” I know I’m solving some problems and we are going more than just helping the CEO by buying nicer car. What are we doing? Everyday across the board. People say, “Oh, that’s exhausting. I don’t want to do that.” Fine, dont do that. Deal with what you got. Deal with the workforce you got because employees right now have choices. I mean, we’re not the only workforce right now, fully deployed. At least a 3%-4% of employment, face it, everybody that you want to hire in your organization, they already have a job. You don’t want to hire somebody sitting in a couch, searching Craigslist for whatever job they can find and play in fourth item in between that’s not what you’re looking for. That’s why you guys have time for a podcast.

Alexander Noren: It’s so true.

Eric Chester: Anyway, the reality is everybody or anyone you want working for you has already have a job. So here’s the thing, what are you doing to be the kind of place that they would leave their job and say, “I’d rather work there.” You want customers to do that, right? You know that whatever your product or service you are invovle right now, whatever company or organization I don’t care if you flip burger or sells pizza or global economic consultancy, you know, your customers, clients, patients, whatever you call them have choices, right? They have choices they can go somewhere else. You know what your thinking today? How do I get more customers? How do I get more people on the door? How are we going to make more money? Let me tell you something, you solve your employee engagement when you put in as much effort into, how am I going to make this a better place to work. Let look at these 7 pillars, what can we do to make this a better workplace?

Alexander Noren: We need to have a quick pause and let everybody sink that in. Can you say that one more time so we can embrace that.

Eric Chester: If you put as much energy and focus into the question, how do I make this a better place to work? As you do in, how do I make more money? How do I increase my margin? How do I decrease my cost? All those questions you asked everyday that you basically a customer focused like do our customers like it? Any restaurant in the world when your done they’re like, “Hey, there’s a survey in the back, we want to know what you really think. Will you tell us and we will give you a free sode next time when you come in. Everybody wants to know what the customers think. When you go to a hospital, we want to find out what’s your experience is like, we are so focused on, that’s great. Are you putting the same amount of focused on? Are my people really enjoying it? What can we do? Not just an annual performance review and just say at the end, “Hey, do you like working here?” No, we’re not putting much into it. Its the old Yogo Wupin Philosophy, Yogo Wupin. Y-O-G-O, I can’t remember what stands for those letters. You only get out what you put in. That’s it.

Alexander Noren: Sounds simple enough.

Eric Chester: You only get out what you put in. That’s it. So if you are not putting a whole lot in your workforce, if your not putting a lot in your culture and you know what nobody wants to hear this, everybody’s listening to this podcast and you know what you want guys, they want that silver bullet. Just give me the three things I can do so I can all of the sudden engage my employees and guest what I don’t have to listen to a podcast and I’m done.

Alexander Noren: There’s 7 of them in a book. It’s already been written.

Eric Chester: Its still not a silver bullet. Josh, you’ve done amount of parent programs so have I. Where you go out, speak to schools and next thing you know, you wind up talking to parents. Typically, parents that come they don’t want to brag either kids are amazing or their kids don’t even talk to them. It’s too late but once the vast amount in the middle. Like the 80% vast, they don’t come. And those are the ones are probably struggling the most. What I say to the parents, as long as you’re asking these questions Im not going to give you a bunch To do or not. I got kids that are climbing the walls. Trust me, I don’t have all the answers. I don’t even know the questions are. But Im telling you everyday, I ask myself what can I do to be a better dad? What can I do to be a better dad? And I just don’t ask that rhetorically, I mean, what do I need to do across each and every child. What are they dealing with? What do they need from me? What do they want from me? What can I do? Asking the question, if you’re feeling overwhelmed, good! I got this. Nope, kids are great, everything’s good. You know what, your kids probably out selling crack. Sorry. You got to have your hand in the wheel you should be continuously asking yourself. You either hungry or constantly improving or your not and if you say, “Hey, we work on Employee Engagement, we did a survey. I think it was a year or year and a half ago were we ask our employees for a few things and you know what we started playing some cool music in the factory with bright lights. We told them that we’re gonna give you casual Fridays were you can wear your sneakers, guess what we got that handled. No, you don’t. How Jerry Maguire put it, “It is an up-at-dawn, pride-swallowing siege.” it’s hard to engage employees, its hard. Its even harder to get on fire at workforce. But I’ll tell you this, go into an Apple store in the mall that is closest to you the outlying store. Go to an Apple Store, you want to see employees with fire on work that love their product, that love their company, that are incredibly loyal to both, and love on their customers. What’s the difference here? I’ll tell you, it’s the way they treat their people. And they focus on making their place better to work every single day. By the way, they just became America’s First Trillion Dollar company. So guess what, if focus is treating your people well and really engaging them. You’re gonna have on fire workforce, you’re going to get better every single day and if you stop and said, “You know, we deal with that once a year. We have a little retreat and I pitched it to HR, Hey what are you guys need from us.” Your missing it man. Your missing it. People has choices.

Josh Drean: Reminder, cracking a wip on what companies have to do and we’re so grateful to have you on the show. We just want to wrap this up here by saying if you were to be sitting one on one with the CEO of the company who wants to do better but doesn’t know where to get started what would you say to them?

Eric Chester: Time to talk to your people, time to get out from behind your office, walk around and find what your people think. You ask me how I find out, I go around and talk to people just happen to do it with my iPhone but you know, talk is the first thing Find out don’t do a survey monthly. Go around talk to some folks. Find out what they really think and convenience people like, “You know what, I don’t really like our uniforms” Don’t just go out and pick another uniform get your people and say “What do you think? What should we do here? What don’t you like about them? If you ASK you GET. People will tell you, right? They will. They’ll tell you. So the first thing, get out behind the desk, go talk to your people, find out what your holes are. You can’t fix what you don’t know is broke. You can’t fix it. So I have a survey, that goes along with those 7 things it’s called onfireatwork.com there’s a survey in there. You can use for your employee. 35 questions that they can take on their smartphones or whatever. It’s my way of 5 questions each 7 areas all mixed up and the survey responses come to us. We put it together and then we send you a report. This is how your people feel. Because sometimes it depends, if you are a leader and go “How do you like your job?” Your going to hear a lot of “I love it, I wouldn’t change a thing because they are afraid” Maybe your not getting the answer. There’s a difference what people will say and what they are really feeling inside. They got to feel they can be trusted to tell you, “Hey this place really sucks. I hate this. This policy took away our company vehicle two years ago and I’m still pissed about it.” You dont know because how do you know? How do you know how they feel? Everyone seems they are okay , “Yeah that’s fine. Its okay. That person, they quit. They quit they just didn’t tell you. We can them road warrior, R-O-A-D, Retired On Active Duty. They’re gone. You lost them. Their mind and body checked out. Their looking for bigger, better, faster deal. They are already out the door. You don’t know, you got to look down the road. You got to know your people are happy, delirious happy and the only way to do that is to continue to keep that dialogue open. I have an assessment if you don’t have your own assessment, try mine. Again, http://onfireatwork.com/ or ericchester.com will lead you there.

Josh Drean: And you can find all those descriptions below, we have links in the descriptions so feel free to check that out. Eric, thank you so much for joining us in our show. It’s been absolutely fantastic learning from you and we just appreciate it and we’ll catch you next time.

Eric Chester: Hey guys, thanks alot for having me and all the best. I know you guys have been solving problems in this really delicate area and I know you guys have what it takes, you have the passion and drive. I’m glad to be part of it.

Alexander Noren: Thanks so much we appreciate it.

Eric Chester: Alright. Talk to you later.