Monthly Archives: March 2011

Can an employee be truly motivated in the current climate?

There are currently a lot of reports being done looking at the quality of life employees have. According to a recent article in peoplemanagement almost a third of workers say their standard of living has dropped in the past six months (data from the employee outlook survey), 46 per cent of people have had their pay frozen and 20 per cent believe they’re in danger of redundancy. Many people have commented on how they think this situation should be managed with consistent and high quality leadership being mentioned above most. I feel that this situation needs to monitored more closely.

If an employee has worries outside of work, increased stress levels and is in a state of nervousness is it possible for a business to fully motivate them? Businesses have a big task of surviving and making themselves more efficient during this time of uncertainty and are therefore in a catch 22 position for how much stability and certainty it can provide its employees.

Demotivated staff are harder to work with and it would be nearly impossible for them to increase productivity, but by businesses focusing on motivation, being as open and honest and increasing team work this should enable a greater chance for survival. Employees often think that they are made to pay while the people at the top don’t get affected during difficult times. By educating employees and providing tools for them to see the bigger picture it will help them to be motivated and see that they are not alone in these uncertain times.

Is HR going too far?

Time and time again I read about equality and diversity for example in February 24th edition of peoplemanagement magazine in the news section there is a feature discussing the number of women in senior management and boardroom level jobs. Surely HR should be driving these types of restrictions or recommendations out of our businesses as true equality and diversity should not be monitored or restricted.

I am a firm believer of best person for the job role based on competences and their team working skills, not due to their culture, look or gender. It is only natural that we have a higher percentage of “traditional business men” working in more senior jobs and at board level, succession planning and development is not a quick fix. We have a greater number of “traditional business men” within the work place at all levels and it will take time for the best to filter through regardless of who and what they look like. I believe that it takes a long time for someone to gain the skills needed especially at a senior level so the idea of promoting people into these roles just to meet diversity or equality targets worries me.

Until we get to the stage were everyone is interviewed in a sealed box and their voice is altered by a computer there will always be questions about was it 100% fair. We are always going to have these discussions but if there is no realistic solution shouldn’t time be spent doing other things. We can keep gathering data but what does it get used for and what competitive edge does it give a business?

As a person who on paper fits into the “traditional business man” profile it concerns me how positive discrimination is deemed ok and we are being driven to employing people to meet targets. For years we dealt with the change in business and had to change our working practices and measures to make sure it was fair for all, yet it seems like now we are the ones who are being discriminated against.