A colleague recently asked me, “Is it just me, or is everyone talking about diversity?” Interesting question and I guess it depends on who you ask. People have been talking about diversity for decades: the lack of it, the need for it, and the problems with it. I think my colleague is hearing an old conversation that has gone mainstream, perhaps even “viral”, and is gaining speed in our workplaces and communities.
Immigration has been talked about a lot lately. It has been cited as a vital ingredient to long-term prosperity in Atlantic Canada in the face of our aging population and shrinking workforce. According to the Ivany Report, Nova Scotia is projected to have 100,000 fewer working age people by 2036 than we did in 2010. That’s nearly a 20% decline in our labour pool. Clearly, a successful immigration program is no longer “nice-to-have”, it’s a must.
The Chairman finished speaking and sat down, arms crossed. He’d put forward an impassioned argument for the merger; a great deal, negotiated over many months, a capstone of his career.
Sam stood slowly, hands planted firmly on the boardroom table, looked the Chairman squarely in the eyes and said “I am opposed. This deal tears the company apart, will lead to massive lay-offs and will ruin the brand and reputation we have built over the past 50 years.”
Is Sam wearing pants or a skirt?
For years, employers have been hearing that three generations in the workplace is a recipe for disaster. We’ve been told they all have different requirements and approaches to work, particularly Gen Y, otherwise known as Millennials. And woe to those organizations that are unable or unwilling to understand and address those needs.
Maybe you saw it coming, or perhaps it came as a complete surprise – either way, losing your job is tough. For many, it can be a pivotal moment in the trajectory of their life. Will you choose to change your career path or seek a similar role to the one you are leaving? How will you avoid compromising your career goals in the face of financial concerns and the inclination to get back to work quickly?
On October 21st, 2014, HRANB held a professional development session in Moncton, where I had the pleasure to be the guest speaker. The topic was Performance Reviews. After a brief introduction and a few observations from the podium on the current state of performance reviews, we decided to try a unique initiative. Given that we had over 90 human resource professionals in the room, I wanted to have a discussion focused on the best and the worst aspects of performance review systems and processes.
Employee engagement has headlined top business blogs and articles for over a decade and although we are making some inroads, many employers and managers still don’t understand what engagement is—let alone how it can impact their bottom line. Top 500 firms in North America do, however, tend to be more in tune with the benefits of an engaged workforce; namely decreased turnover and significantly increased client satisfaction, revenue, earnings per share and profit (up to 2.5 times that of competitors with low engagement).
The role of women in the workforce has changed dramatically over the last 40 years. Yet challenges exist for aspiring female leaders, as women are persistently underrepresented in the highest levels of organizations. A study by Catalyst suggests that among the Fortune 500 Executive Officer positions, only 14.6% are held by women. And, rather than continuing to grow, this number has stagnated in recent years.
Strong leadership is an essential ingredient in organizational success. Understandably, the topic of leadership attracts a lot of attention. Organizations train, develop, align and build capacity to enhance leadership capabilities. Yet, all too often, the focus becomes perfecting policies and plans to achieve operational excellence. Despite the most thoroughly considered strategies, I am constantly amazed by how often leaders completely miss the mark in execution because they don’t have a supportive following.