By Michael Holland – 

In a book I read a few years ago, a company was mentioned where the owner and leadership team decided they wanted to live out their cultural values in a radical way: They would provide employees with a guarantee of lifetime employment.

That decision had profound impacts on so many aspects of leadership. Here are a few.

How Employees Are Hired

They had to be very intentional in their hiring. They had to make sure they were interviewing in ways that were crystal clear regarding the role, duties and responsibilities. And they had to gain clarity on the values and character of the potential employees. There had to be a good cultural fit.

How Employees Are Trained

Leaders had to be diligent in the full on-boarding of employees over a long period of time. They had to train the employees in the best way possible to help them be successful because, you know, they were going to be employed for life.

Employees Had to Really Want to Work There

Lifetime employment seems great but it is a two-way street. New employees had to be ready to be engaged with their leaders in ways that were much more intrusive even if in a positive way. Leaders would not simply manage out low performers. The leaders would double and triple down on re-training because they and the company had committed to the employee for life.

Coaching Thoughts – For You and Your Peers

  • Would you want to offer the employees on your team lifetime employment? Why or why not?
  • What would you change in your hiring process to mimic the lifetime employment mindset?
  • Would your boss be a good candidate for lifetime employment?