Thursday, March 29, 2007

The role of psychology

The problem with Ginny is that she's too good. Annoying, yes. But still good. On balance, her sales figures are enough to dampen my chronic irritation with her considerable noise levels, her unannounced and unnecessary claims on my time, and her utter disregard for her colleagues deals-in-process which she takes a perverse pleasure in disrupting by stealing the properties for her own clients at the last minute or hiding information about new apartments until Ginny's own clients match.

In an average month, if her performance is above the median (which is usually is), then Ginny might account for 30% of the monthly turnover. In short, we feel exposed to her over-performance and doubly so as she's been gabbing for the last year about moving to Suriname for a new life (and by the way, her aunt lives there). With a view to binding her into the team here and building a career for the next few years in Amsterdam, Klaas and I have been offering her (OK, begging her) different roles.
"Come on", says Klaas in his most encouraging voice, "make a decision - stay! What's Suriname got to offer if you're not a pensioner or tax exile?"
Pause.
"OK - I quit."
The lesson here is that while psychology has a role to play in persuading someone to stay, go or do something, education also has a role to play in ensuring that the would-be psychologist knows what the heck he is doing. Challenging Ginny was just not the right tactic. Money is her motivator. We should have attempted to buy her. Something like,
"Here's ten thousand Euro - please stay until Christmas."
Does this sound too much like groveling?

1 comment:

Andy B said...

Well, I finally got around to linking to you in my blog. Do you get an e-mail when you get comments? You can do that, you know.