Retail Management: Understanding Capacity & Capability
When we hire new staff, we hope that we have found the best and the brightest. In time, we soon learn if that faith is founded in reality. But when that employee starts to struggle, we often discard them and start all over again with a new hire.
For some managers, this is a sound policy, why would you keep these low performers? But I would disagree. You see, there are some folks out there that can’t do the job to save their soul, and others that are fully able to do the job asked of them…but don’t know how. It’s up to us to determine the difference and find out why they are struggling.
Typically, staff struggles for one of two reasons; a lack of capacity or capability.
In terms of retail management, Capacity is ones ability to process and execute the job. It’s the finite ability of the individual to do the job. Just as a 90 pound child cannot lift a heavy load….some folks just aren’t able to do the job at hand. And that’s OK…it’s just not the job for them. Identifying this early is an important part of recruiting. But it’s also key to recognize it after you’ve brought the individual on board.
On the other hand, Capability is the individuals ability to do the role based on their skill level and accumulated knowledge. They ARE able to to the job….they just don’t know how to yet. What they need is further training and enlightenment on where they can grow. These people deserve your time and effort and will repay you with passion and skill…once they mastered it.
Knowing the difference in these traits is key, and will save you a tonne of recruiting and training costs. One is someone whom no amount of training will improve, the other can become an incredible asset to you and your business. I’ve worked for people who have thrown away talented people, and it’s a waste of all of our time.
Learn to identify the difference and watch your business grow and thrive.