Tavio Roxo CEO OWLSTM Software talks performance incentives and keeping staff motivated
Tony: One of the difficult things currently, is that people work remotely, people work part-time, people work project based, and then you have full-time staff that are working in isolation on their own and sometimes in a team but sitting somewhere remote. This makes it quite a difficult environment in which to keep staff motivated. What do you think motivates digital natives?
Tavio: There is a couple of things, but first, I am not an expert in this field, let us just state that at the outset. The only contribution that I can make to this discussion is that from the outset, with our company’s establishments in 2007, we recognized then that you would not be able to execute on a business model like ours using the traditional office space model with bringing people to a central place. Because we recognized back then that some of the skills that we required were not available, for instance, in the Johannesburg area. We had to have a model where you were able to get skills from anywhere in the country or anywhere in the world
A few of the items presented themselves as issues around how you attract the right digital native, what do they like and how do you keep them incentivized in your business.
The first thing is that we realized that every single person is different, there is no paint for all. A key factor in today’s world is the ability to work completely remotely without the necessity to have to come into the office. With that then, as you mentioned, brings some difficulties around the alignment of staff and getting everyone moving in the right direction.
Tony: Based on that then, how do you get buy in? While everyone is different, you are trying to get something that works for everyone, that will motivate a variety of different people. How do you implement something like that? Do you go around asking them?
OWLS™ Insurance Software
Proud providers to insurance companies, UMA’s,
administrators, intermediaries and financial services companies.
Tavio: To get alignment is always difficult but one of the things that we have tried to put in place is the breaking down of everything into small work packets where there is a clear alignment relating to that specific work packet. Then the accumulation of multiple work packets from different people gets you to the end goal.
But we break down, in our business, every function. It does not work through email or through interaction in person, it would work through a workflow where someone gets a work packet with an amount of time allocated to be able to perform.
Tony: Once you have a performance incentive or a system implemented, how do you keep the people involved and excited without it getting stale?
Tavio: An incentive program that does not have subjectivity in it, but is really an objective metric, in which the person who is being measured can dial up their performance or dial down their performance themselves, really does assist in keeping them engaged. Because if they dial it down, they are essentially the master of their own destiny, they are the master of their own performance. You measure them in real time, digitally.
In our world, that is how that would work. But, in our client’s world, you can start measuring items like the amount of time it takes to close off a claim or the amount of time that it takes to perform a cash allocation, et cetera. You can then tie in performance metrics and bonuses to these metrics. Metrics that are available to be measured in real time.
Tony: In closing, how do you motivate yourself?
Tavio: I am chasing the one thing that I really enjoy, which is seeing people get excited about the software. I have told you this before, and it really is important for me, and I have it every so often where I am in a meeting and I show someone something and they just go ‘Wow, that has been a big issue in our world for such a long time‘, and that is the best motivation.