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What kind of example are you setting for the next generation of leaders? Many of the skills and attitudes future leaders will possess are being developed right now through the example set by their superiors. Check out this recent TED Talk featuring leadership development expert Elizabeth Lyle discussing “a new approach to breaking the rules while you’re on your way up, sharing creative ways organizations can give middle managers the space and coaching they need to start leading differently.”

How are you setting up the next generation for success? What are some leadership development challenges you see on the horizon for new leaders? Let us know in the comments section below!

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On paper, hiring friends and family to work for you often seems like a great idea. You already know each other’s personalities, work ethics, strengths, and weaknesses and are able to easily communicate with each other about important topics or issues that arise. However, in practice, that’s not always how it works out.

Before you hire your college BFF or a younger sibling to come to work for you, it’s important to consider a few of the potential pitfalls of working with friends and family.

Other employees may see it as nepotism
One of the more obvious pitfalls of hiring friends and family is concerns of other employees seeing their job or treatment as nepotism. And even if you are careful to draw hard lines between work and personal relationships, there many ways of showing nepotism that you may not even realize. From the type of work they are assigned to the tone of voice you use with them, there are subtle expressions and actions that may not be obvious to you, but other employees will be hyperaware of such interactions.

The lines between work and personal life get blurred
Many people go to great lengths to draw an indelible line between where their work life ends and their personal life begins. From family relationships to personal interests to mental health, proper work-life balance significantly impacts our performance at work and overall quality of life. Hiring a friend or family member works against that separation because you’re essentially bringing your work and personal life closer together. Additionally, your relationship with the person will fundamentally change. From work conversations seeping into personal, non-work situations to the emotions surrounding a perceived hierarchy, trivial things you didn’t think would be a problem in the beginning, could grow and manifest into larger issues that throw off the balance you’ve created between your life inside and outside of the office.

Potential to take advantage of the relationship
Whether it’s intentional or inadvertent, because a personal relationship already exists with a friend or family member, it may be tempting for them to leverage it to their advantage. From more desirable projects to better shifts, it’s important to ensure other employees aren’t being overlooked or treated unfairly. And, on the flip side, because of your personal relationship, you also need to be cautious of overutilizing a friend or family member who works for you. If they become your “go-to” employee for all major projects, they’re more likely to burnout.

Personal relationships may be damaged if it doesn’t work out
Even people you’ve known your entire life can surprise you when you get to know them in a different context. Issues you never would have encountered outside of a work setting could manifest in surprising ways in a boss/employee relationship. Challenges of ego, misguided assumptions about what the work relationship would be like, or incompatible work ethics are all situations that normally wouldn’t necessarily present themselves outside the office. And, if not handled delicately, these issues can cause hurt feelings and resentment that could have long-term effects on your personal relationship with a friend or family member.

All that being said …
It’s not always a bad idea. There are certainly many people who have hired a friend or family member to work for them and it was a rewarding experience for all parties involved. In the end, if you hired them for the right reasons, you have a better chance for success.

If you’re considering hiring someone you already have a personal relationship with outside of work, here are a few important questions to ask yourself that may help put the decision in perspective and help prepare you for the potential pitfalls that could arise:

  • Are they qualified or are you simply trying to “do them a favor?”
    Although it may feel good to be able to help a friend in need, first and foremost, they have to be able do the work? If they are truly qualified for the job and have all the necessary skills and experience, there’s a better chance it will be a successful arrangement.
  • Do they fit the company culture?
    Just because you get along with them, it doesn’t mean other employees will, too. Ensuring a cultural fit is an important step for any new hire, but can be especially important when bringing on a close friend or relative.
  • Are you prepared to set and abide by boundaries?
    As long as both parties involved recognize there is a new dynamic in play and there is an understanding about the type of conduct that is expected when you’re “on the clock,” it’s possible to have a successful working relationship without harming the personal relationship.
  • Would you be able to discipline/terminate them, if necessary?
    Nothing draws a line in the sand between friend/family and being their boss quicker than having to discipline or terminate them. It’s a tricky situation to navigate, and one you need to be sure you’re prepared to address.

Have you ever hired a friend or family member to work for you? How did it work out? What are the pros? Cons? Let us know in the comments section below.

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A chaplain is “a cleric or a lay representative of a religious tradition, attached to a secular institution such as a hospital, prison, military unit, school, labor union, business, police department, fire department, university, or private chapel.” Many businesses have established chaplaincy programs as a benefit to help employees deal with a broad range of spiritual and life issues.

Some studies suggest that corporate chaplaincies are on the rise, so for our January Question of the Month, we want to know if your company employs a workplace chaplain. Let us know by voting in our poll.


Does your company have a workplace chaplain?

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In Express Employment Professionals’ recent Fourth Quarter 2018 Job Insights survey, 79% of businesses surveyed said that it was “somewhat” or “very” difficult to for them to fill open positions. And in our current labor-short job market, skilled job seekers have more options than ever, so retaining top talent has become a vital component to maintain a productive, successful business.

Studies show the actual cost to replace an employee is significant. Depending on a variety of factors—including skill level, education, and experience—the total cost of turnover can be as high as 150% of an employee’s annual salary.

Assume the average salary in your company is $50,000—that means every time an employee leaves, the cost to replace them could be as high as $75,000. Now, multiply that number by your average yearly turnover, and you can see how quickly it adds up.

So, where is all that money going? To truly gauge the impact of employee turnover, you must consider the cost of:

  • Advertising open positions
  • Time spent interviewing candidates
  • Time spent on reference checks
  • Onboarding a new hire
  • Training and development
  • Interim loss of productivity
  • Lost knowledge from exiting employee
  • Overworked core staff due to turnover
  • Impact on company culture

Staffing companies are in the business of helping employers shoulder the burden of maintaining an efficient, productive, and skilled workforce. The true value of staffing companies and the services they provide go far beyond simply hiring a temporary employee.

Access Top Talent
Because they’re only as good as the people they place, successful staffing companies build extensive pools of talented workers by constantly recruiting. From online advertising to social media to referrals from current associates, staffing firms have a wealth of resources that are hard to match. So, your company doesn’t just have access to candidates in your own industry, but across a wide range of disciplines, ensuring you are able to connect with the best of the best.

Maintain Productivity
From exiting employees to increased workloads, there are a variety of factors that take a toll on productivity. Staffing companies are a powerful ally in maintaining a productive workforce. From providing temporary employees to bridge a gap or leading the search for a full-time replacement, with the right staffing partner, the work doesn’t have to stop.

Reduce Costs
From reducing overtime hours for your regular full-time employees to expenses associated with training new workers, there are a variety of ways staffing companies help reduce many of your biggest business expenses. In fact, the most significant value may be created by freeing up valuable HR resources that are spent managing workers’ compensation, payroll, benefits, unemployment insurance, and many other employee management related tasks.

Increase Flexibility
Fluctuations in business volume are a common challenge for most businesses. Staffing companies allow you to adjust your workforce according to your specific business needs. You’re able to scale your workforce up or down as necessary with additional workers when you need them, and only for as long as you need them.

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