I'm one of the two million people who have read Michael E. Gerber's The E-Myth. One of the take-aways I have gleaned from the book is to replace Job Descriptions with Positional Contracts at U&P.
What’s wrong with Job Descriptions?
The only real purpose they serve is to outline a long list of duties a person may (or may not) undertake. They’re passive and rarely updated.
What is a Positional Contract?
Gerber describes them as: ‘A written agreement between a manager and an employee that makes explicit the result the employee is accountable for in that position and the work standards necessary to produce that result.’ See the difference?
How we use them at U&P
We are a very transparent organisation and anyone can view anyone’s contract. This helps our people understand the roles of others, clarifies the differences between roles, and enables our people to have a full grasp of what they need to get to the next level up. These contracts are certainly not set in stone and constantly evolve.
Our contracts include:
- Qualifications required for the role
- The behaviours expected
- A description of the role (broken into: duties, skills, competencies, managed objectives, relationships, administration actions required and accountabilities)
Importantly, the contract is signed by both the employee and their line manager. The employee accepts the responsibilities within the contract, and the manager accepts that they will provide the support and resources necessary for the employee to succeed.
I’ve found that switching to Positional Contracts has helped further engage my team, as they know exactly what is expected of them and their colleagues. Rather than being an out of date passive document like a job description, they’re a ‘live’ roadmap to help my team understand and achieve their end goals.
For more information about E-Myth, visit their website.
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