People Management

Find that missing piece - recruitment

Will your job description help you find that missing piece?

The hiring process can be challenging. There are numerous things to take into consideration when you are looking for a new employee: budget, time frame, essential skills and experience, cultural fit. The list goes on.

However, recruitment should be celebrated. After all, if you are expanding your team your company is growing!

One of the first steps when recruiting is to decide on exactly who you are looking for and to create a compelling job description.

Simple enough right? Not necessarily.

The job advert will represent your company and your hiring needs. A well-written job advert – with a focus on the required behavioural characteristics – will attract the right applicants.

If your advert is not clearly targeted, you may have wasted your time, or it may lead to the wrong hire. Hiring mistakes are costly!

How to take the sting out of holding your employees accountable?

Ensuring that your employees fulfil their responsibilities and meet expectations may feel like a daunting prospect. However, a lack of policy around employee accountability can cause a wide variety of issues for your business.

Each member of your team has responsibilities that you, as their manager, will have assigned to them. The smooth running of the business relies on these tasks being performed satisfactorily.

Any gap caused by an employee not completing their tasks as expected has a knock-on effect on their team members who are left to pick up the pieces. This can lead to colleagues becoming disaffected and disengaged, which will negatively impact the overall performance of your business.

A company with a solid accountability policy will make it easier for their leadership team to encourage their employees to take responsibility and feel accountable for their duties.

Employee Experience – why you should embrace it

Have you ever considered the employee experience at your company? Most companies are well versed in the world of customer experience, because everyone knows that an enjoyable experience for customers means that customers come back for more! Bearing this in mind, perhaps it’s easy to see why similar principles are being applied to all functions within organisations around the world. The tide has also started to turn in terms of companies putting the customer first and the employee last. It is now broadly accepted that if you look after your employees, they will look after your customers for you. A positive employee experience is also likely to make your people feel more valued, motivated, and engaged, and they are therefore less likely to leave – another plus point for the overall productivity of your company! …

Manager as Coach Launch

Why do we need ‘Manager as Coach?

An opinion poll conducted by Gallup has found that 87% of employees worldwide are unmotivated, disengaged and under-performing.

In contrast, a highly engaged workforce is said to outperform their peers by 147% in earnings per share. The economic repercussions of having employees who do not feel committed to supporting a company’s goals are staggering.

Employee engagement – or rather the lack of – remains a key issue for employers. Nurturing your employees is a professional obligation, and not just for financial reasons. …

Why being able to coach employees makes you a better manager

The findings of the CIPD Learning and Development Survey from 2015 show that three quarters of organisations currently offer a degree of coaching or mentoring to their employees. 13% were planning to introduce this in 2016, with most expecting that their use of coaching will increase by 2017.

But why?

Changing any aspect of your life, be it professionally or privately, does not only require a huge amount of energy and resolution but often a good advisor too – someone who is able to help you to judge things objectively, who has experience with comparable situations and problems, and is nevertheless able to suggest individual solutions.

In our private lives, we would naturally turn to a trusted friend or a close member of our family to help us work through these issues and arrive at a solution.

It is therefore not surprising to learn that more and more people who find themselves professionally stuck in a rut or at a crossroads turn to a coach. As a manager, you should expect to be – or become – the first port of contact for any developmental issues or when guidance is needed. …

Making teams work like legendary Basketball Coach Pat Summitt

Sadly, Pat Summitt passed away in June 2016 after a courageous battle with early-onset Alzheimer’s. After 38 years as a successful basketball coach, she leaves behind a legacy of creating winning teams.

Under her leadership, the Tennessee Lady Volunteers basketball team never had a losing season. Pat Summitt accrued over 1098 career wins, the most in the history of National Collegiate Athletic Association basketball. Sporting News placed her at number 11 on a list of the 50 Greatest Coaches of All Time in all sports. Pat was the only woman on the list.

Pat Summitt elicited a consistently high performance from her team under pressure, the kind that all leaders – in sports or business – crave. She created success in a sport where teamwork is paramount, and her team had the greatest respect for her.

So, what lessons in leadership and team building can managers take from this winning coach? …

3 Ways to Keep your Workforce Motivated in Times of Change and Uncertainty

3 ways to keep your workforce motivated in times of change and uncertainty

All business have to be flexible to survive the constant flux going on in and around them. We all know that change and uncertainty are inevitable on some level, but do we all know how to handle it?

Some people enjoy a constantly evolving work environment, however not all employees or even leaders share the same levels of enthusiasm.

Uncertainty for some can be a nightmare: Routine goes out of the window, jobs can look insecure, familiar faces might be replaced, and as a result of countless similar factors, some employees are left feeling lost at sea with no captain.

So, as a business owner, leader or manager, what do you need to do to help your crew get through turbulent times? …

The Link Between Employee Wellbeing, Engagement and Absence

n 2015, statistics from CIPD told us that employee absence had risen to 6.9 days per employee per year on average in the UK, and only 25% of organisations achieved their absence target for 2014.

Unsurprisingly, the working world is now desperately trying to find out how to address this because of the huge impact that absenteeism has on productivity.

The Labour Force Survey results show that approximately 10 million days were lost to stress, anxiety or depression in 2014/2015,
and statistics show that these figures are worsening year on year. Stress at work, leading to long-term absence, has more than doubled since the 1990s, yet only a third of employees receive any support to manage workplace stress.

This is bad news for business. Many organisations are now turning to wellbeing programs in an attempt to combat the ever worsening stress levels, but it has been suggested that for some companies, this is simply a move to tick a box as opposed to a reaction to genuine concern or understanding. The CIPD suggests that the majority of employers are more reactive than proactive in their approach to wellbeing (61 per cent), responding to
persistent problems rather than predicting what health and wellbeing factors might impact the workforce in future.

It would appear that employers now grasp the concept of engagement, but for some reason don’t fully comprehend the intrinsic link that exists between engagement and wellbeing.  Simply put, the healthier and happier an employee is, the more engaged they are: Paul Devoy, head of IiP, said: “Organisations need to see staff health and well-being as crucial to their business and staff retention.” He added: “Happier staff are less likely to take time off sick.”

It is saddening that in most cases, employee wellbeing only becomes an issue because it affects business. Let’s go back to the Labour Force Survey results, which show approximately 10 million days lost to stress, anxiety or depression in 2014/2015.

Over this period, there were 440, 000 cases of work related stress, depression or anxiety. What on earth are we doing to our employees?
Here’s a one-word glimpse into the reality of the current state of our workforce: Leaveism. The term has only recently been coined, but the phenomenon has existed for quite a while: ‘Leaveism is when employees use allocated time off – such as annual leave entitlements, banked
flexi-hours and re-rostered rest days – when they are in fact unwell.’

Research has found that 76 per cent of employees who have practised leaveism have done so to avoid being labelled as ‘poor performers’, or because they don’t want to be viewed as being unable to cope with their workload. This ultimately means that a large amount of sickness absence is going underreported, and is distorting both the incidence of sickness in the workplace and worryingly, the ability to fully get to grips with employee wellbeing.

You might be asking yourself ‘Why would anyone do that?’…If you’re asking that question, you have probably not worked in an organisation that has a ‘quota of sickness’ which if exceeded supposedly reflects poor performance. Speaking from experience (happily a good few companies ago), taking annual leave rather than sickness leave makes a lot of sense when you are worried about being hauled into an office and grilled about your performance and commitment.

It seems that some companies fail to realise that by creating extra stress around health issues in the workplace, they are only going to create a vicious cycle of illness and absenteeism. “Organisations which fail to implement health and wellbeing policies – despite being aware of their importance – are putting employee and business health at risk” the CIPD has warned.

This is a clear message. While the business impact should of course be taken into account, we need to recognise that this is about a deep-rooted wellbeing problem. As with most issues, one way to address the situation surrounding employee wellbeing is to start with communication. Go to the root of the problem.

We need to find out what individuals in the workforce really need from their roles and employers in order to stay
healthy and motivated, rather than throwing systems at them and asking them why they aren’t happy yet. Unfortunately, there is probably no one-size-fits-all resolution at this point, but understanding individual needs and issues is surely a starting point. Let’s not
forget that our workforces are built from complex human beings.