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thumbnail New Diversity Rules: Why Recruiters Can No Longer Send in the Clones
When innovation can make the difference between "has-been" and the "next big thing", organisations no longer can afford the luxury of choosing whether to recruit for diversity. A broad range of talent promotes creativity and produces bright ideas, making it a must-have for organisations facing fierce competition and the perpetual demand to reinvent products and services. These days it most definitely takes (almost) all kinds and the well-recognised tendency to recruit "people like me" poses a serious risk, insist experts. Sure, managing a team of diverse employees can present challenges, but smart managers now must dare to recruit differently.
From: March 20, 2012 thumbnail Want to Improve Customer Service? Treat Your Employees Better
Staffing levels and customer service training often fall victim to companies' efforts to cut costs and meet quarterly earnings targets. At the same time, however, consumers expect higher-quality treatment than ever before, and can easily let the world know if they don't get it. So how can firms ramp up their customer service efforts on the cheap? It's as simple as treating employees better -- so they will do the same for customers, experts say.
From: March 20, 2012 thumbnail Why the Job Search Is Like 'Throwing Paper Airplanes into the Galaxy'
"Wanted: smart, creative, dedicated individual to design efficient system that matches companies' job listings with people looking for work. Contact the HR industry." It's a tough assignment: Job seekers often feel that sending out resumes is a mind-numbing exercise in futility, while companies are inundated with applications from too many unqualified candidates. Wharton faculty and other experts weigh in on today's challenging job market.
From: March 05, 2012 thumbnail Courage Under Fire: The Lowdown on SMS Sacking
Is it okay to fire an employee by text message? Two recent hearings involving managers who sacked workers by SMS resulted in different rulings from Fair Work Australia commissioners, creating confusion for bosses. The high-profile cases are symptomatic of broader legal and ethical issues confronting managers when they decide how to communicate with staff. Email and text messages are commonly misinterpreted, experts insist. While the key issue in unfair dismissal disputes concerns whether fair process has been followed, the most important message is leave nothing to chance – don't hide behind technology. When it's bad news, both sides need to face up to it.
From: February 20, 2012 thumbnail Flipping the Switch: Who Is Responsible for Getting Employees to Take a Break?
In the new world of work, 5:30 p.m. is far from the end of the day. Smartphones and laptop computers -- devices that ostensibly enable us to work faster, more efficiently and more flexibly -- have become 24/7 intravenous hookups to our jobs. Fearing employee burnout from being "always on," a number of firms have recently instituted initiatives requiring workers to take breaks and switch off their gadgets. But do such blanket policies really make a difference? Who is responsible for ensuring that employees maintain a healthy work/life balance?
From: February 20, 2012 thumbnail Managing Office Romance: Is There a Policy for Mixing Business With Pleasure?
Office romances tend to be considered by management as off-limits or too hot to handle. Creating and implementing policies and guidelines around such personal matters may be tricky, but it’s necessary, insist experts, because poorly managed – or unmanaged – relationships can negatively affect a workplace and sap productivity. Favouritism, conflicts of interest and lack of trust are just a few of the problems likely to emerge. With many relationships beginning at work these days, it’s time for managers to tackle this sensitive issue seriously, but carefully.
From: December 07, 2011 thumbnail Abusive Supervision: A Look at Bullying from Both Sides
What's the role of the victim in workplace bullying? Typically, abusive bosses are blamed when it comes to instances of mistreatment at work, but bullying involves a two-way interaction. While not pointing the finger at workers, new research suggests it's time to explore abusive supervision from both perspectives. Are the underdogs contributing to their own plight? Particularly anxious employees may inadvertently bring on confrontation, claim the researchers, while organisational stress can also be a contributing factor. But in the end, both parties will need to work to repair the relationship.
From: December 05, 2011 thumbnail Do You Really Want Fries With That? How to Find a Customer Service Perfect Match
The attitudes and styles of customer service reps may present a perfect match for some customers, and just get up others' noses. New research from the Australian School of Business pinpoints three different perceptions of good customer service among frontline employees. Each is right in certain circumstances, but can be damaging when misplaced. With more customer touch points in today's organisations, the trick is in recruiting sales and service personnel to suit and then ensuring a one-size-fits-all approach to training does not impinge their beneficial attributes.
From: November 22, 2011 thumbnail Equal Pay: Setting the Standard to Even the Salary Gap
Pay equity has eluded women in the Australian workforce. While there's been a drive to get more women into the boardroom and rising through the executive ranks, the pay gap between men and women has barely budged over the past 27 years. Now a new draft standard that aims to help progressive employers make the workplace fairer in terms of remuneration has been taking comments. Reading between the lines, it seems much of what women bring to their jobs is frequently undervalued. But with the release of a final standard in 2012 that may be all about to change.
From: November 07, 2011 thumbnail Limited Seating: Mixed Results on Efforts to Include More Women at the Corporate Board Table
Although women have been steadily gaining ground for years in the workforce, both in the U.S. and abroad, they still occupy a very small number of board seats in big companies. Some countries have responded by passing laws requiring that a certain percentage of seats on a company's board of directors be held by women. But experts warn that the issue of greater board diversity calls for more than a "one-size-fits-all" solution.
From: November 07, 2011

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Knowledge@Australian School of Business