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Work-Life Balance: Staffing

Prepared for:

Professor Nazik Arisian

California State University, Fresno

Fresno, CA

Prepared by:

Student Name

BA 105W (80)

30 September 2020(Put current date)



1234 Elm Street

Fresno, CA 93740

September 30, 2020

Professor Nazik Arisian
California State University, Fresno

5241 North Maple Avenue

Fresno, CA

Dear Professor Arisian,

The attached report, requested during online Zoom meeting on August 20, 2020 describes three

of the main components that impact staffing in the workplace. With a finite amount of time and

resources, it is important that companies like yours know where to best invest theirs. All three

are of great consequence when it comes to work-life balance.

Main components of staffing are:

• Hiring

• Coaching

• Team Member Development

Challenges faced regarding staffing:

• Financial costs and time requirements

• Disciplined selection process

• Effectiveness and frequency of coaching

• Tools and trainings available

This report was created using secondary research methods. Information was obtained through

online articles of reputable magazines, initially found through the Google search engine.

I would be very appreciative of the opportunity to discuss the findings within this report further.

I know that you have many options when selecting your staffing support specialists and am

thankful that you have entrusted me.



Student Name



EXECUTIVE SUMMARY……………………………………………………………………….v


HIRING: WHAT IT ENTAILS………………….………………………………………………..2

COACHING: WHEN AND HOW………………………………………………………………..3

TEAM MEMBER DEVELOPMENT…………………………………………………………….6

IMPACTS ON WORK-LIFE BALANCE………………………………………………………..7

Consequences of a Bad Hire………………………………………………………………8

Consequences of a Poor Coaching…………………………………………………….…..9

Consequences of Not Developing Team Member…………………………………………9







1 Quit Because of Manager………………………………………………………………….9


Executive Summary

Upload separately.



It goes without saying that a company is only as strong and productive as the employees

that it is comprised of, but what is at the heart of this foundation? The answer, staffing, may be a

simple one, but its composition is quite complex. While hiring is the clear starting point, it is

only through effective coaching and team member development that the employees and company

can achieve solid, long-lasting success. By best leveraging the components within staffing, you

increase the likelihood of achieving a desired work-life balance.

Knowing that there is a finite amount of resources, such as time and money, it is

important that leaders know how and where to best invest theirs. The temptation to fill an

opening as quickly as possible, must be counterbalanced by the reality that making the wrong

decision could have expensive, far-reaching consequences. Once you are fortunate enough to

find the right candidate with the desired skillset and qualifications, you are only through the first

staffing hurdle.

By being selective and choosing the best candidate for your position, you are setting

yourself and team up for success, but this initial hiring victory is for naught if not properly

cultivated. Just as the best athletes in the world continuously need to be coached and provided

feedback, so your team members yearn to have constant support. If the coaching provided is not

enough or not efficient, there is a high likelihood that even the best and most loyal employees

will become disengaged and leave. Flexible and effective coaching will have a direct impact on

team performance, turnover and overall quality of life for everyone involved.

Mastering the role of a coach is not easy, but many great leaders will achieve it and have

to shift their focus to the final component. Once you have a well-coached, high performing

team, there is one thing left to do. Just as a parent must eventually let their children move on to


face life by themselves, so must leaders prepare their employees for future roles. Being able to

properly develop a team member to exceed their existing job functions, while preparing them for

the next role, is the greatest achievement that a leader can attain.

When all of these components are adequately addressed, you will have a high success

rate in most aspects of your business. How you allocate your time, money and energy will have

a direct impact on your staffing, so let’s review each area a little deeper and determine the best

return on investment.


As we delve deeper into this topic, we will address all of the different costs associated

with staffing, including time and effort. However, let’s begin with the financial cost to fill an

average position in 2020. As referenced by Mile Zivkovic in his Togglehire article, “Another

study by the Society for Human Resource Management States that the average cost to hire an

employee is $4129, with around 42 days to fill a position” (Zivkovic, 2020). That four-thousand-

dollar price tag may not seem too steep, but multiply that by the hundreds or thousands of

positions that companies need to fill annually, then it becomes substantial; thus, the importance

of this decision is evident. While this cost is clearly high, we must also account for the lost

productivity that results from an opening, as well as the reduced productivity during a new

employee’s ramp up period. Research has confirmed that it will take 8 to 26 weeks for an

employee to achieve full productivity (Zivkovic, 2020). Considering that even when you make

the right decision, you are still looking at almost half a year’s worth of reduced or lost

production, it highlights the true costs of having an open position.

Realizing the high direct and indirect costs associated with hiring may give you adequate

cause for concern, but through effective hiring practices, you can reduce turnover. Many people


believe that this hiring process begins during the interview, but it actually starts long before. As

soon as a new position is created, or an existing one vacated, the clock to fill it begins.

Companies must select which platform or platforms they would like to share their opening on.

Some of the most popular platforms include job search sites, online classifieds, and internal

postings. While all companies may not have the luxury of a robust, existing employee base to

support internal postings, those that do are at an advantage. These internal postings not only

save money, but also create a candidate pool that has current knowledge about the role and


Regardless of where your company decides to place its posting, it is imperative that you

make the posting as detailed as possible. Be clear in the soft and hard skills that the position will

require and be sure to not deviate too far from that list when reviewing candidates. An additional

component that many companies have begun to embrace, is the practice administering a written

or online assessment. These assessments may differ, but the theme is to present situational and

behavioral scenarios to the candidate to better assess their skillset. As an employer, it is best that

you be thorough and demanding with your candidates because simply hiring to fill a spot will

only increase the likelihood of repeating the process sooner than later. As Dan MacCarthy

comments in his article, “In most cases, a “warm body” (or bad hire) is far worse than leaving a

position vacant until you can find a great hire or firing a poor performer, even though the person

cannot be replaced” (McCarthy, 2019). Not only will hiring the wrong person have negative

consequences to your budget, but it can also wreak havoc on your existing


A large part of helping create a desired work-life balance amongst your organization is

tied to developing and leveraging strong team member dynamics. By not fully vetting a

candidate or settling for a subpar one, you could be placing your current team in peril. McCarthy


(2019) also speaks to this by stating “when one employee is underperforming or carries a

consistent bad attitude, it has devastating effect on the rest of the team.” This added stress will

reduce efficiency from the entire team and may carry over into their behaviors on tasks and with

customers. If top performers are forced to take on additional duties to offset underachievers,

their own quality of work may suffer and they may become actively disengaged. Add this to the

additional time and energy that will be spent on performance management and potential human

resource issues, it is clear to see that effective hiring truly is at the foundation of a successful



If merely being surrounded by talent was enough to catapult you to the top, then hiring

would be your sole objective. However, just as technology is constantly evolving and

advancing, so must your employees, or you risk becoming obsolete. While your workforce may

be able to develop independently, the fact remains that coaching from leadership will have the

greatest positive correlation with their growth. It is only through impactful and continuous

coaching that employees master current functions and prepare for expanded responsibilities.

When it comes to coaching, there are many styles, but choose wisely because the price for not

doing so is catastrophic.

The vast range of coaching styles fall into three main categories. They are authoritarian,

democratic and hands off. While the responsibility of this coaching will mostly fall on the

manager, it is important to foster a culture within your company that is receptive to coaching

from all levels. The authoritarian style, while still around in some institutions, has fallen out of

favor over the past few decades. In this style, employees did what the boss demanded because

that was the chain of command and any deviation was subject to reprimand. This archaic view


wasn’t all bad, as summarized in the article by Herminia Ibarra and Anne Scoular. They stated

“As a manager, you knew what needed to be done, you taught others how to do it, and you

evaluated their performance” (Ibaraa & Scoular, 2019). This direct method of coaching was a

great fit for the vertical organizational structure and allowed for successful employees to advance

within the ranks.

With so many of today’s companies flattening their organizational structures and the

internal corporate latter no longer being the preferred way for growth, coaching styles have been

forced to evolve. Some companies allowed the pendulum to swing completely to the other side

and have taken a laissez-faire attitude, providing minimal coaching and oversight for their teams.

This is common in technology or accounting fields where completing tasks within deadlines are

all that matters. Thanks to advancements in technology that allow for people to essentially

designate their own working hours, this flexibility is enjoyed by many and contributes to their

work-life balance. As pleasant as the idea of freedom at work seems, it is not for everyone and

should be selected with caution.

By far, the most common coaching style that has taken the place of authoritarian, is

democratic. In this style, leadership actively seeks feedback from their subordinates and takes

their wants and needs into account. This is not a cookie cutter approach and for maximum

efficiency, should be customized down to the individual level. Under this style, managers are

not only allowed, but encouraged to take their teams’ soft skills into account. For this style to

truly be successful, it must be genuine and must be accepted as a cultural expectation for the

entire organization.

Just as with any coaching style that is selected, there can be a vast amount of variability

around its delivery and impact. The key to being a successful coach is to not only show people


how to do things, but more importantly, help them become a better version of themselves. As

leading figure in his field, Sir John Whitmore is quoted in the 2019 article, this method is all

about “unlocking people’s potential to maximize their own performance” (Ibarra & Scoular,

2019). Being this type of coach may not come naturally to some and it is important that

companies provide adequate coach the coach opportunities to help those front-line leaders

develop their personal skills. While coaching sessions under this style may occur more

frequently and take more time, the return on investment is priceless. A well-coached team that is

engaged and loyal to their leaders and organization will create a steady stream of qualified talent

for future openings and expansion possibilities.


Taking the time to screen and select top tier talent, and providing great coaching are

great, but it is only when combined with an opportunity for growth, that they are maximized.

Coaching and team member development go hand in hand and may share many similarities, but

there are several differences that should be made clear. While coaching provides the opportunity

to learn new tasks and expand existing talents, team member development is about setting the

employee up for success and turning those upgraded skills into tangible opportunities. Just as

with coaching, ensuring that employees understand their role is key in this area. Some additional

steps that need to occur in this step include providing training and tools, and developing a plan

for growth.

As previously mentioned, coaching individuals takes time and energy. In fact, a recent

study from the research firm Leadership IQ determined that the ideal amount of time that a

manger should spend with each employee is six hours per week. “As people rose from one to six

hours spent with their direct leaders, they became 29% more inspired about their work”


(Vanderkam, 2014). This may be an aggressive and somewhat unrealistic goal as many leaders

have far too many employees directly reporting to them to allow for that much time. The great

news is that some of this coaching and learning can be administered through trainings and office

memos. Obviously, these sources are not as formal or customized, but they do allow for a large

amount of knowledge to be readily available for your entire team. These trainings may include

essential job requirements, but ideally would also allow for elective courses that interest

individuals and help better prepare them for advancement. With the right amount of coaching,

training and support, your employees will be more likely to feel appreciated and desire to grow


One of the best feelings that a manager may have is when one of your team members

obtains a well-deserved promotion. This is the end result of team member development, but it

will not occur without effort from all parties. It is also a reality that not every employee will

have the desire or ambition to move ahead. For those that do want to climb, it is important to

partner with them and create and revisit a plan for their growth. “Not every team member will

have that potential or even desire a promotion. But for those who do, focus on providing stretch

assignments, reviewing the challenges and expectations they will face at the next level, and

measure their development progress” (5 Essential Steps to Develop Your Team, 2017). This

development plan will serve as a measuring stick for both coaching efficiency and the

employee’s growth. The last thing you want to do as leader is to ill prepare your people for a

promotion or instill a false sense of confidence for abilities that aren’t there. A well-coached and

well-trained employee will more easily transition into a new role and be better equipped to

handle the stresses and challenges that it may bring.



It is clear that proper staffing is at the foundation of any successful business, but how

does it tie in to work-life balance? While there may not be one defined, perfect model of ideal

work-life balance, the fact remains that reaching this equilibrium is in the best interest of both

the employee and employer. “Maintaining work-life balance helps reduce stress and helps

prevent burnout in the workplace. Chronic stress is one of the most common health issues in the

workplace” (Kohll, 2018). Depending on the level of stress that one endures, this may result in

missed work and even long-term leaves. With one or more people gone due to leaves, the

remaining team is burdened by having to work extra to pick up the slack left behind by those

vacant roles. This could cause them to become unbalanced and potentially create a domino

effect. There are many possible negative outcomes of an unbalanced work-life ratio, so make

sure to take the proper steps to avoid following this path.

Consequences of a Bad Hire

By taking time in the front-end during hiring, you may be able to avoid bringing people

with potential issues onto your team in the first place. Asking about gaps in employment or short

tenures may be clues in regards to work ethic or burnout potential. While not concrete, they are

red flags that should not be ignored. Attitude and professionalism are two soft skills whose

importance cannot be overlooked. Just one negative attitude in the work place can spread like a

cancer and before you know it, more and more people will underperform and call out. If left

unchecked, the team will assume that leadership is tolerant of this behavior and some will lower

their standards, while others may leave to avoid following suit. Regardless, this will create a

decrease in production, loyalty and overall team-member morale. All of this amounts to large


financial and time related expenses, so to avoid falling into this loop, it’s best to hire right the

first time.

Consequences of Poor Coaching

Of the three steps reviewed, coaching has the most direct impact on work-life balance.

An employee who is coached regularly and provided with constructive feedback, will have the

most opportunities to thrive. They are less likely to feel overstressed and more likely to remain a

part of the company. The real danger lies in lack of or inadequate coaching. The relationship

that an employee has with their manager is the most important of all and when fractured, will

most likely result in the employee leaving. As Figure 1 shows, “People leave managers, not

companies. 57% of employees have left a job because of their manager” (DDI, 2019). The

stress from not being able to communicate with your manager or feeling that you are not valued

will disrupt one’s work-life balance, and the resulting turnover will affect everyone. Once again,

failure to invest in your team will force you to restart the staffing cycle with one or multiple new


Consequences of Not Developing Your Team Members

Even with a great relationship with their manager, an employee is not guaranteed to stay

or to stay happy. If they are left alone for too long or feel as if they have been overlooked for

advancement opportunities, they are likely to also become disengaged and seek alternate

employment. While coaching helps, most employees have a genuine desire to not only advance,

but to also learn more and take on new responsibilities. If these desires are not heard and

eventually put into some sort of action, a resentment can develop that will decrease their

performance and could influence those around them. Once again, an employer faces not only the

risk of losing an employee, but a highly talented and promising one. Therefore, it is of the


upmost importance to continue through coaching and develop a formalized development plan for

each team member. This cannot be a one and done type of thing and must be revisited and

updated frequently. Only through this additional step, can you be truly sure that someone is

ready to take the next step on their journey.


There is no doubt that when it comes to achieving a balanced work-life, all of the staffing

components are important. Without allocating the correct amount of resources to each, you are

putting yourself at a disadvantage organizationally. All three of the areas within staffing must be

respected and accounted for at all times, but they are not equal and business decisions must be

made that take opportunity cost into account. Knowing that you can’t be supporting all three at

all times, it is imperative that you find a combination that best suits your business’s needs.

After reviewing these components, I recommend:

1) Create a detailed job posting, with an accurate description of what the position entails and

the desired soft and hard skills.

2) Do no settle on any candidate just to fill a position with a warm body.

3) Proper process for onboarding new team members, ensuring they understand the role and

company culture.

4) Create a customized coaching plan for each employee and make sure it consists of

scheduled and in-the-moment coaching.

5) Feedback is provided as an open discussion, allowing for the employee to share their

thoughts and confirm understanding.

6) Ensure that managers are well-equipped to conduct the democratic style coaching

sessions required to maximize efforts.


7) Draft and update a developmental plan for each employee, ensuring that they are

prepared for the challenges and responsibilities of future roles.

While all are important, the biggest return on investment for your organization will come

from the area of coaching. A potentially devastating hiring decision can be salvaged through

effective coaching and all employees should have the opportunity to thrive. A great coaching

strategy will incorporate the team member’s development throughout and will only strengthen

the bond that the employee feels towards the leader and company. By investing enough time to

all areas, but focusing the majority of your efforts to coaching, you increase the likelihood that

both your employees and organization will enjoy the fulfilment of genuine work-life balance.



5 Essential Steps to Develop Your Team. (2017, February 25). Undercover Recruiter.

5 Essential Steps to Develop Your Team

DDI. (2019, December 9). New DDI Research: 57 Percent of Employees Quit Because of Their

Boss. PR Newswire. https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/new-ddi-research-57-




Ibarra, H., & Scoular, A. (2019, October 25). The Leader as Coach. Harvard Business Review.


Kohll, A. (2018, May 23). The Evolving Definition Of Work-Life Balance. Forbes.



McCarthy, D. (2019, June 25). 5 Exorbitant Costs of Making a Bad Hire. The Balance Careers.


Vanderkam, L. (2014, July 13). Why Managers Should Spend Exactly 6 Hours A Week With

Each Employee. Fast Company. https://www.fastcompany.com/3032972/why-managers-


Zivkovic, M. (2020, August 14). The True Cost of Hiring an Employee in 2020. Toggl Blog.




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