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Question added to topic Human ResourcesJanuary 25, 2008

Should our small business freely share monthly and yearly revenue figures with all employees?

I'll soon be taking over the position as V.P. of Operations of a medical practice with approximately 60 employees. In the past, the owners have been reluctant to share revenue figures with all the employees. However, I would like all employees to know exactly how the company is doing from month to month (whether good or bad). I strongly feel that full disclosure will motivate employees to do a better job and will make it easier for management to discuss company-wide targets the practice needs to hit. I do not, however, want to create an environment where health care is put in jeopardy for higher revenues. What would you recommend?
While I'm a big believer in "open book management," it's important to make sure that your employees' goals are aligned with the goals of your company. This means not simply sharing your monthly, quarterly or annual financial results, but letting your employees know what they can do to improve those results and giving them a financial incentive to help you do that. Such incentives may take the form of a company-wide bonus pool, a sales compensation plan or a profit-sharing plan. The key is to make sure that whatever incentive plan you put in place takes your company where it needs to go. There's no point in jeopardizing product quality or customer relationships for the sake of short-term sales or profit goals.

Rosalind Resnick is a New York-based freelance writer, entrepreneur, investor and author of The Vest Pocket Consultant's Secrets of Small Business Success.

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