Posts Tagged ‘HR’

HR – A story of two very different team philosophies

April 27, 2020

HR in a crisis

We all know the story .. on the 12th March, the country was effectively shut down except for essential services.

It was a time when each and every single employer in the country had to figure out really quickly what they needed to do to protect the business during this uncertain shut down period – how long would it go on for, how many bills do I have, how much money do I have in the kitty, how much do I need to survive?

All huge questions and with no simple answers and no playbook to refer to.

What we did next reflects who we are, who the business is, our values, our ethos.

A week later, I checked in on a good friend of mine who worked as a baker in a coffee shop (part of a  small but well known chain) around the corner from our office, just to make sure that he was OK.

What he shared with me was a tale of two very different HR philosophies and two very different approaches to their employees.

On exactly the same day he was given notice by his employer and his partner who manages a creche was also told that her place of business was closing because of the “lock-down”.

However, there was a huge difference between both.

In his case he was “left go”, unceremoniously with no guidance towards where he should go to for supports and no word as to what his status would be when this “pause” was over. Effectively it was a P45.

In her case, she was also left go temporarily, but with absolute clarity that her role would still be there when things returned to normal, she was guided towards the supports she needed and the employer set up a WhatsApp group so that the team could stay in touch during the lock-down.

While both of these scenarios were identical, they couldn’t be any further apart.

I have sadly heard of so many cases where loyal employees were just cast away on the 12th March, with virtually no concern as to how they would put food on their tables next week.

Your team are your business, and how you treat them will absolutely determine how successful your business will be and how deep your team will dig for you when needed.

When the lights come back on, I know of a great guy and all of his colleagues who will be looking for a new opportunity, and I know of a great gal and all of her colleagues who be delighted to get back to work and will dig deep for their employer when the chips are down.

What type of employer are you?

Greg

Greg Canty is a Partner of Fuzion Communications, a full service Marketing, PR, Graphic Design and Digital Marketing agency with offices in Dublin and Cork, Ireland

 

Motivating the boss!

March 2, 2011
Give your boss a hug!

Give your boss a hug!

I was working on employee contracts lately, which I really hate because you get into this formal, “what happens when things go wrong” world.

You suddenly go from the niceties of the interview and the informal job offer to the “legal contract“, which at the end of the day is a vital legal document protecting you and your staff members in the event of any issues arising.

I know it has to be written in a particular way but I really try and keep it as “real” as possible capturing the essence of the agreement and the spirit of the working arrangement and our organisation. Even with our very best efforts the contracts still carry some of those awful formal bits.

Before I put the latest offer in the post I have one last glance over it and I realise that I have left something out that is really vital to me, I have actually quite carelessly left it out of all the contracts I have ever issued.

Here goes with the missing clause – In the course of your duties you must motivate the boss!

I can’t ever recall seeing something like this in an employee contract and I’m sure it would be a difficult issue to review if there were ever an issue or dispute but I do think it would be a great thing to put in there.

Like most bosses today I am juggling a million things and so many different roles. I work really hard, I try to make sure our team are motivated and happy (despite tax increases reducing their income), I make sure that our working conditions are comfortable, I make sure we stay up to date on all the latest trends and technology, I make sure that we bring in enough business to pay the bills, I make sure that we collect on time (or as best as possible) from our clients, I make sure that we pay our bills, I make sure that we pay our taxes and most of all I make sure that we deliver the magic that makes all of this happens; satisfied clients – we make sure together that we consistently deliver great results for them.

I don’t expect a medal or anything for the really long hours, effort, endurance and 24/7 focus but at times this can be really stressful and quite exhausting, particularly now when the rewards can be as simple as just staying in business, which I do fully appreciate. While I am normally really upbeat and will gladly take on the role of motivating the others at times I do slump a little – it’s at these times that I really need one of my crew to spot the “dip” and say those few words, give me a motivational pep talk, take me for a coffee or whatever it takes.

Thankfully my crew are good at spotting the dip and aren’t shy at offering a “lift” at the right time – that is one of the most valuable things they could do for me. Probably more valuable that all the other stuff that is required of them – After all there is no jurisdiction or hierarchy over motivation.

How about putting that clause in the contracts? Not so crazy after all ..

Greg Canty is a partner of Fuzion Communications.