The End of Painful Job Description Tasks

Job Descriptions

I have noticed that my family-business clients spend a lot of time and money on job descriptions. They write, rewrite, fuss, and fluff. And then start over. Personally, I can’t think of many things worse than doing this process over and over again. Can you? Because I’ve seen so much wasted effort, I pondered what EOS® could offer to help bring about the end of painful job description tasks.

The Sisyphus Job Description Cycle

Over a year ago, I found myself in an uncomfortable debate with the leadership team of a third-generation family business. 

This business struggled to hit key numbers, had huge turnover issues, and had just lost its Integrator™. The leaders had just set some aggressive Rocks meant to help them get the company back on track. 

None of the Rocks had anything to do with job descriptions. After more than half an hour of debate, I gave up, and they spent the weekend fixing job descriptions. 

Another client assigned someone to spend an entire month rewriting job descriptions. Can you imagine rewriting job descriptions eight hours a day for more than four weeks? They had to feel like Sisyphus, the Greek legend, doomed to push their job description boulder uphill for all eternity. 

Job descriptions should provide a clear explanation of roles, responsibilities, and expectations to perform a position well. The trouble is that the granular needs of positions change frequently, especially in entrepreneurial companies. Detailed job descriptions become obsolete nearly as quickly as leaders finish crafting them. I knew there had to be a better way!

The Sara B. Stern Style Job Description

Disclaimer: This is NOT an official EOS Tool. Rather, consider this my concept on how to use EOS Tools to easily write job descriptions. This way they become less painful to create and more useful for everyone involved.

Why Job Descriptions Hurt

I built this on my assumption that writing job descriptions typically:

  • Falls outside of someone’s usual business tasks
  • Takes a huge amount of time
  • Become obsolete quickly, requiring constant updating
  • Rarely makes a direct connection with day-to-day expectations
  • Turns into boring, meaningless gobbledygook that lacks inspiration

Instead, why not use your Vision/Traction Organizer™ to show candidates who you really are?

Crystallize your vision and align your team

Mad Libs–Style Substitute

Why do we spend so much time creating exciting job postings to recruit people … then give them boring job descriptions? I wondered why we don’t keep recruiting our team members after they come on board? I created this Mad Libs–style job posting that you can tweak (or just reuse) as a job description:

[NAME OF COMPANY], a [number]-year-old family business whose [purpose/cause/passion] is about [niche] welcomes you.

We all work together to [10-Year Target™].

We specialize in [niche], our sweet spot. If you want to belong to a team that does that well every day, this company’s a great fit for you.

Our clients are [target market]. If you have experience working with this type of client – or want that experience – this role will be a great fit.

You will love it here if you:

  • [core value 1]
  • [core value 2]
  • [core value 3]
  • [core value 4]
  • [core value 5]

You’ll love coming to work every day if you get, want, and have the capacity to do:

  • [The Accountability Chart role]
  • [The Accountability Chart role]
  • [The Accountability Chart role]
  • [The Accountability Chart role]
  • [The Accountability Chart role]

You’ll have success here if you value clear processes and feel qualified to do the following things:

  • [Process 1]
  • [Process 2]
  • [Process 3]

We train our team to help them succeed, and everyone on our team helps with our success. In this role, you’ll be accountable to hit the following numbers each week:

  • [Scorecard measurable]
  • [Scorecard measurable]
  • [Scorecard measurable]

If you want to come to work, learn, and hit those numbers, you’ll be recognized and rewarded. 

Our company runs on EOS purely. That means as a member of this team, you will have a leader who:

  • Gives clear directions
  • Makes sure you have the necessary tools
  • Acts with the greater good in mind
  • Delegates appropriately
  • Takes time to truly understand your role and how you can help the company
  • Makes their expectations clear
  • Communicates well
  • Has effective meetings
  • Meets one-on-one with you quarterly or more, if needed
  • Rewards and recognizes your performance

And that’s it! Rinse and repeat for every position. No word salad, no lost weekends agonizing over meaningless details. Regain hours (or weeks!) of productivity working on the most important tasks to move your business forward. 

Find out what other EOS Tools and resources can help your business by downloading the free EOS Toolbox™.

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