Why some employees leave in their first few months

Pronel and TLC team

(from left) Sarah Giles (Business Development Manager TLC), Tanya Hulse (managing director TLC), Bridget Jones (managing director Pronel Personnel) and Liezel van Antwerp (recruitment operations manager from Pronel) PHOTO SUPPLIED

PRONEL, the personnel agency and Training Leadership Consulting (TLC) provided some insights yesterday into why employees leave in their first few months. Imagine, as a business owner, you just heard the bad news — that new superstar employee you hired a few months ago suddenly resigned, as apparently “it just didn’t work out”.

TLC MD Tanya Hulse said at the Victoria Country Club that the cost to a company of not getting the right employee is high, and can amount to 150% of the annual cost of a salaried employee, and up to 75% of the annual wage of an hourly paid worker. There are additional indirect costs, including the time necessary to bring the employee up to speed, the price of mistakes, the impact on other staff and risks to the company’s reputation. She said that for a new employee, the on-boarding period is usually viewed positively, as they have decided to leave their previous job and feel that they want to make a success in their new position. Meanwhile, the employer will also feel positive in that they will have invested time and money to get the right person.

“In reality its tough. Everybody has expectations and anxieties,” said Hulse. She said ideally companies should start on-boarding programmes the moment an employee is signed on, and it is usually best to get as much of it done as possible, before the employees’ first day at work.

One can do, for instance, as much of the necessary e-mail and scanning that is required, during this period. One of the pitfalls she has encountered includes that the appropriate managers are not there on the new employees’ first day.

Other problems she has encountered includes one employee who had to wait four weeks to get logged on to the company system and laptop, and another where a company took days to get an employee hooked up just to be able to email. “IT and human resource staff often say they need time to get various things ‘signed’. You need to find a way to get around this,” to expedite the on-boarding process smoothly,” said Hulse.

She said employers also need to find a way to manage the training requirements of new staff, so that the staffer doesn’t have to wait six to eight months to do some required training, but also so that the employee isn’t overloaded with information and requirements right at the beginning of the on-boarding.

Employers should also consider the risks through the on-boarding, such as what are the employees working on and who are they dealing with. She said employees changing jobs are going through big changes in their lives. “You have to make it simple for them. Try to put yourself back into the shoes of when you were a new employee, and how you felt at that time,” she said.

Pronel managing director Bridget Jones said a lack of clarity during on-boarding can be damaging for a company. She said that for instance, a basic on-boarding kit should include a welcome letter, an  outline of a training schedule, a list of forms to be completed, company policies and procedures, points of contact and a tour of facilities.

As published in The Witness, 20 April 2018 by Edward West

Image | Posted on by | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Lean thinking helps businesses to thrive

Lean is a way of thinking that transcends the nuts and bolts of tools, says Tanya Hulse

As featured in The Mercury 28 March 2018 by Peta Lee

The Lean philosophy can help maintain the organisational resilience needed to thrive in an uncertain world, says Tanya Hulse, managing director of business improvement consulting firm Training Leadership Consulting (TLC). Speaking at a recent Lean Forum hosted by the Pietermaritzburg Chamber of Business, Hulse said businesses faced unprecedented change, in what business leaders increasingly refer to as a “vuca” world. The notion of vuca was first used to describe the more volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous world which resulted after the Cold War, though it is only in the past two decades that the term has been adopted by business leaders to describe the chaotic business environment that has become the “new normal”.

Hulse, an engineer who has spent 25 years working in the world of multinational corporates, is well versed in production management, process optimisation and capability development, within South Africa and globally. “Being able to adapt is crucial to survive. We have to change in many different spheres – there’s the impact of policy uncertainty due to political volatility, economic curveballs like currency fluctuations and a potential trade war, accelerating technology advances including the Fourth Industrial revolution, and then also rapidly changing social and cultural norms,” she said. While the term “resilience” might imply just an ability to survive adversity, in business terms it captures the ability to bounce back stronger after hard times. But for businesses to weather vuca times, they must build resilience by focusing on purpose and vision, culture, people, processes and fitness.

“The Lean philosophy has been around for a while, with some of its principles grounded in breakthroughs dating back more than a century,” said Hulse. Lean is a way of thinking that transcends the nuts and bolts of tools. “A clear purpose provides people with a sense of connection to something greater than themselves, and to others who share this common purpose. Leadership is crucial to communicate this and live the spirit of it – which goes far beyond merely selling goods and services. Lean is based on clarity of purpose in understanding customers’ real needs and how to meet or exceed them.”

A culture founded on the values of trust and respect was crucial for resilience. “It allows people to engage in effective problem-solving and innovation as a way to tackle challenges and become ‘change-ready’. These are core tenets in Lean.” However, establishing teams of people whose values and aspirations align to the business’s purpose and culture can be tough.

“Lean seeks to empower people to take ownership of workplace issues and solve them – to develop technical and leadership skills, and teamwork. People with some control over their work environment are less defensive at the prospect of change.” Hulse said if internal business processes and systems were bureaucratic, rigid or obscure, the business would struggle to deal with change. “Lean’s role here is clear: streamlined, transparent processes can be changed more quickly and accurately than convoluted ones.”

Hulse referred to companies that have thrived after successful Lean transformations, quoting examples where lead times reduced from more than four weeks to less than two days, errors to customers were reduced by 90% and turnaround on overdue accounts improved by more than 70%, all of which provide an invaluable buffer in times of volatility.

“For companies wondering how to become more resilient and agile, Lean provides a proven yet flexible roadmap for the journey, regardless of industry sector.”

Posted in Business Improvement, Customer Experience, Leadership, Lean Leadership | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Beverage giant ABInBev partner with TLC for their Lean Six Sigma training

We’ll drink to that that!

TLC’s Gauteng Director, Maurice Kuhn, recently started training a team of senior managers on Lean Six Sigma Green Belt at beverage giant ABInBev’s Johannesburg offices.  Maurice, a Master Black Belt, is pictured with the ABInBev team, including the Africa Zone President Ricardo Tadeu (back row, centre).

“It has been a great privilege to work with ABInBev’s experts in the US and South Africa to put this programme together.  We have been able draw on the expertise of the Master Black Belts of both TLC and ABInBev to ensure the programme will deliver to the company’s strategic agenda.” said Maurice.

He explained that in many respects, ABInBev’s approach to roll-out of Lean Six Sigma capabilities within the organisation is world-class.  “ABInBev’s Africa Zone have identified key strategic projects that are essential to achieving their business goals for the year.  They have identified capable senior experts to head up each of these projects and we have now commenced the training and coaching, so that they will have the skills they need to deliver on the ambitious benefits expected from each initiative.  The projects are tracked and reported monthly at a global level alongside all other Lean Six Sigma improvement projects run in other regional Zones around the world.”

Attendees included delegates from South Africa, Tanzania, Nigeria and Mozambique. And what are those ambitious benefits, you might ask?  Maurice explained that these projects are projected to deliver real savings of several tens of millions of dollars. We’ll definitely drink to that!

Quote | Posted on by | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

And that’s a wrap for 2017

A message from our MD, Tanya Hulse.

So here we are, well into December already.  While there are still a good few days to go before I can take a breather and start relaxing with family and friends and enjoy the Christmas festivities, it is also a great time to reflect on what has been a true whirlwind of a year.

It is hard to believe that it is only ten months ago that my family and I finished packing up our belongings, leaving our previous life in Joburg behind, and heading beyond the misty Drakensberg to begin our next chapter here in Pietermaritzburg.  And what a time of change it has been!

From the beginning, we were warmly welcomed by everyone we met, whether it was as a new member of the TLC team, or meeting the parents of our daughters’ new friends at school, or the neighbours down the road from us.  I have enjoyed grappling with many new challenges – in my previous role at SABMiller, we used to talk about ‘drinking from a fire hydrant’ when describing how it feels to adapt to fast-changing environments; well that’s definitely been the case this year!

In amongst the daily operational challenges in any small business going through transition, we have had many highlights that have kept us encouraged and inspired.  In April, we held a memorable Craft Beer and Food Pairing event for our clients and business partners, where we were able to expose them to a world of possibilities they might never have considered were possible with beer (similar to what we aim to do for our clients!).

In May, we welcomed the highly capable and experienced Maurice Kuhn into the TLC family (again), as TLC’s Regional Director for Gauteng, enabling us to manage a portfolio of clients in both Gauteng and KZN. Mau’s expertise as a Master Black Belt is extremely valuable for our team and clients.

In August, we were again privileged to work with the inimitable Mel Veness and her team at the Pietermaritzburg Chamber of Business (PCB), and other sponsors, to deliver another excellent KZN Lean Conference, with the highlight being the extended strategy working sessions with international Lean guru Pascal Dennis.

In November, we were completely at a loss for words (for a short while, at least), when we won the PCB Small Business of the Year Award.  This is the most incredible recognition for our team and their efforts in continually finding ways to delight our clients while still staying ahead of new thinking in our changing world.  The celebrations were even more special in that we could share the evening with Singakwenza, who won in their category for Social Enterprise of the Year for small NPO’s.

Nedbank Pietermaritzburg regional manager Ashrinee Gopi hands Training Leadership Consulting Managing Director Tanya Hulse the Pietermaritzburg Chamber of Business’ annual award for the Best Small Business at the recent event at the Royal Showgrounds Photo:Jonathan Burton

We had another first in December – Grant Davis led the TLC team who partnered with Lee du Preez of BEE Novation in delivering a strategy conference to the Communications Department of Parliament – read more about this in Grant’s blog article.

Additional highlights for us this year include rolling out new learnership programmes to assist clients in achieving their B-BBEE targets, adapting Lean programmes for first-line managers to fit within their busy daily schedules, piloting an entire Lean Six Sigma Black Belt course using real-time Virtual Webinar technology with participants from three different countries, customising one-day Continuous Improvement awareness workshops for several different clients, delivering financial fitness workshops in Zulu, achieving millions in savings from business improvement projects – yes, that’s all part of what we do! We look forward to more adventures in 2018!

In closing, let me take this opportunity to wish all our clients, partners, friends and team members a happy, healthy festive season.  Thank you for your support over this year, and we will strive to exceed your expectations even further in 2018.  Enjoy this time with your loved ones, and stay safe!

Best wishes,





TLC Team Back row (ltr): Maurice Kuhn (Gauteng Director), Sarah Giles (Business Development Manager), Taryn Moodley (eLearning support), Grant Davis (Business Improvement Manager)
Middle Row: Prineshan Amichand (IT Manager), Tanya Hulse (MD), Nikita Fynn (Learnership and accreditation administrator)
Front Row: Nondu Nzimande (Training co-ordinator and HR administrator) and Roxy Ellis (Marketing co-ordinator and Graphic Design support)


Posted in Business Improvement | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Parliament- The highest office in the land

Grant Davis shares his experience training the communications team of Parliament, South Africa 

What a privilege to engage with the Communications department of the highest office in the land! Earlier this year, our team at Training Leadership Consulting (TLC) were approached by Lee du Preez, from B-BBEE consulting firm, BEENovations, to take the lead in running one of the three days of a strategic conference for the Communications Department of Parliament South Africa. We were only too happy to be involved in supporting one of the most high-profile institutions in South Africa. As you can imagine, the Communications Department has a crucial role to play, as they control all media communications  within Parliament.

TLC team having a tour of Parliament

Upon arriving in the beautiful city of Cape Town, we were treated as honoured guests and given a guided tour of the National Assembly, and other historically significant rooms and buildings. We were amazed and humbled by some of the stories those walls had to tell, instilling a deep sense of pride in our beautiful nation.

Our message to the Communications team began by sharing key insights around the Fourth Industrial Revolution and how it is already impacting organisations and businesses around the globe. We then had great team-building fun through a number of practical activities that teach the fundamentals of innovation, leadership, and purpose-led transformation. In a South African context, where “transformation” has potentially controversial connotations, this concept of purpose-led transformation yielded some great insights. We also led the team through an exercise where they experienced the harmful effects of poor communication, and they were introduced to a term called “Silo-situs”. This describes the classic break-down of communication that occurs all too often between departments within organisations.

(ltr) Lee du Preez (BeeNovations MD), Maurice Kuhn (TLC Director),Prineshan Amichand (TLC IT Manager), Grant Davis (TLC Business Improvement Manager)

The energy and excitement was unreal and I was blown away by their enthusiasm and what they managed to achieve. Our activities were designed to simulate being part of a highly effective team and what an environment of trust should feel like.  The delegates engaged with these concepts experientially, and so were able to identify with the learning on an emotional level. This type of learning appeals to what scientists refer to as the “limbic brain”, which is responsible for our feelings but also for our decision-making, yet interestingly has no capacity for language.

The day was a complete success, with some of the delegates giving feedback that they felt energised and challenged, and some saying they had never had a learning experience like it before. It was an absolute privilege to engage with the Communications Department of the Parliament of South Africa, and was a day for our team to remember.


Author: Grant Davis, TLC Business Improvement Manager

To visit our website click here www.tlc-global.com


Posted in Business Improvement, Conference, Workshop | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Witness Article – TLC aiming to double in size

TLC aiming to double in size

Consultancy firm aims to create new jobs 

As published in The Witness on 22 November 2017 by Edward West

Tanya Hulse accepting award

Nedbank Pietermaritzburg and Hinterland regional manager Ashrinee Gopi hands Training Leadership Consulting Managing Director Tanya Hulse the Pietermaritzburg Chamber of Business’ annual award for the Best Small Business at the recent event at the Royal Showgrounds Photo. Jonathan Burton

Training Leadership Consulting (TLC) Managing Director Tanya Hulse believes the company is ready for substantial growth following a period of transition over the past 18 months.

TLC won the Pietermaritzburg Chamber of Business’ Small Business of the Year Award recently.

In a subsequent interview with The Witness, Hulse said she joined as Managing Director after TLC’s founders, Rick and Debbie McCarthy, re-located back to Rick’s home-country, the US, in August 2016.

The McCarthy’s started the company in 2001, focussing mainly on business improvement using the Lean Six Sigma methodology.

Since then, TLC has broadened its offering into other forms of group and individual training and consultancy services, such as learnerships and internships to support companies with their B-BBEE, leadership training, and workshops on business strategy, purpose-led transformation, as well as short business skills courses. Many of these are available as eLearning courses through their global online portal, The Leadership Centre.

TLC has a number of big corporate clients around the country spanning a range of industry sectors, and works with a growing number of Pietermaritzburg-based companies.

“We also support our greater community by using our expertise in the business world to assist a non-profit organisation, Singakwenza, which runs early childhood education programmes in economically disadvantaged communities, using recycling to create toys and teaching tools. We were delighted that Singakwenza won the Social Enterprise of the Year for small NPO’s at the Pietermaritzburg Chamber of Business awards.” said Hulse.

There are twelve full-time employees at TLC, and a well-established network of various Master Black Belts, trainers, partners and other training specialists who manage client requirements on a contractor basis.

“We are keen to grow the company and give the team an opportunity to support more clients, and to create new jobs. In the next two to three years, we’d like to double in size,” said Hulse.

Hulse said the results of their training courses are often substantial, and can be quantified in rand terms. For example, she expects that clients implementing Lean Six Sigma courses should be able to recover at least the cost of the training through the savings achieved in the first year, and certainly within the first two years, of a successful roll-out.

Lean Six Sigma is a powerful integrated methodology and an operational excellence toolset. Lean tools enable businesses to lower the cost of doing business by reducing waste and defects in their processes. Six Sigma focuses on reducing variation in a process by isolating the root-cause of a complex problem through process and data analysis. The business improvement community has seen the benefits of using these two methods simultaneously.

Posted in Awards, Business Improvement, Leadership | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Lean thinking in our Healthcare industry

PCB LEAN FORUM 7 November 2017: Learning from Healthcare Success Stories.

Lean principles can successfully be applied in the Healthcare environment to improve both hospital management and the patient experience.

A culture of problem solving needs to be embedded into our healthcare delivery approach to enable efficient and effective service delivery.

Join Jayshree Naicker as she shares key learnings from success stories of how Lean thinking can transform our healthcare industry.

Guest Speaker:

Jayshree Naicker

Qualified Pharmacist and Lean Six Sigma Master Consultant

DATE:  7 November 2017

TIME:  17:00 pm

VENUE:  Chamber House, Royal Showgrounds, Pietermaritzburg

About Jayshree:

Jayshree is a highly regarded advisor and mentor with a passion for change leadership to achieve sustainable results.  A qualified pharmacist and Lean Six Sigma Master consultant, Jayshree serves a key role in engaging with clients to develop and execute strategy and implement operational excellence initiatives. She has trained and mentored executives, leaders and improvement practitioners in finding creative and innovative solutions to business problems. Her industry experience includes ABSA, Avis, Barclays, Consol, Discovery Health, Liberty Life, MCG Industries, Medical Research Council, Momentum Health, Nedbank, Sasol, Standard Bank and Sovereign Health. She obtained an international accreditation through the Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain, gaining exposure to the National Health Services(NHS) and received a Bachelor of Pharmacy Degree from the University of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa.


To Book your seat email: info@pcb.org.za

Posted in Business Improvement, Change Management, Continuous Improvement, Lean Leadership, Standardisation | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment