People First HR Services

Who are these aliens we call millennials?

Colleen Coates

Call them Millennials, Generation Y or the young adults still living in your basement, this is the generation that is supposedly going to save us Gen X’ers and older.  Yes, this is the generation who received trophies not only for participating in sports, but just for showing up it seemed.  The National Institute of Health reports that 40% of Millennials got so many participation trophies growing up that they believed they should be promoted every two years, regardless of performance.

Team motivation part of day-to-day business

Colleen Coates

In order to create and sustain team motivation, it needs to be a matter of constant focus.

Think of it like coaching your team for a marathon. This would require training on a daily basis in order to build stamina and reach optimum fitness levels. It’s simply not enough to offer short, infrequent spurts of intense training activity and hope it will take them the distance.

Many leaders make the mistake of thinking team motivation is separate from or somehow less important than conducting day-to-day-business. They may put it on the back burner, believing that there will be plenty of time to work on morale and team building after the bottom line is achieved.

Craig McIntosh of Acrylon Plastics on the power of entrepreneurial thinking

People First

Acrylon Plastics CEO wants managers to act as owners

Craig McIntosh readily admits that he doesn’t accept no for an answer.

“No just means you haven’t heard me clearly, so let me explain myself to you some more,” says the president and CEO of Acrylon Plastics, a Winnipeg-based manufacturer of custom plastic parts for a wide range of applications including buses, farm equipment, windows and doors, fencing, commercial buildings and residential playgrounds.

McIntosh says his proclivity to positivity is a common trait of entrepreneurs. “That’s just part of our nature. We don’t regard boundaries as absolutes but rather as obstacles to be worked around whereas many others see boundaries as absolutes and are stopped by them.”

Open your eyes, use your head before raising glass on the job

Colleen Coates

It’s a sobering reality: alcohol is still present at most work functions, from holiday parties to client lunches. While most of us realize that “liquid lunches” are passé and that getting sloshed at a company event is never (ever!) wise, it’s still unclear what is appropriate when it comes to social drinking on the job.

A recent survey by the Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM) shows that this is a grey area. Respondents were asked how alcohol is perceived by their organizations at a variety of work-related activities. Among the findings, some said drinking is acceptable:

‘Benevolent’ sexism still common on job

Colleen Coates
While catcalls and overt comments aimed at female co-workers may have gone the way of the switchboard and manual typewriter, research shows that there is still sexism in the workplace. And while this brand of sexism is much more difficult to detect than what used to be so prevalent in the workplace, it is just as harmful.

It’s called benevolent sexism and while most of us do not even recognize it in our everyday lives, we encounter it on a regular basis.

Rosie Jacuzzi of Misericordia Health Centre on maintaining core values

People First

From the major construction work outside of Misericordia Health Centre, it is obvious that big changes are underway. Once renovated, the complex will house expanded community programs, including the four flagship programs not offered anywhere else in Manitoba: the Buhler Eye Care Centre, Provincial Health Contact Centre, Sleep Disorder Centre and Urgent Care Centre, plus the Ambulatory Diagnostic Centre and a new, one-stop health care centre for seniors called PRIME.

“This dynamic redevelopment project is designed with the future of care in mind,” says Rosie Jacuzzi, president & CEO of Misericordia Health Centre. “These specialized programs complement our vision and reflect a move toward community-based care.”

Everyone wins when volunteering is part of the job

Colleen Coates

Studies suggest that the company that volunteers together not only stays together, but outperforms the rest.

Whether building houses, preparing hot meals or delivering hampers, volunteering as a team makes a difference in the community, but also enhances employee engagement and boosts the profile of the company. One recent report stated that 64 per cent of executives see how corporate citizenship has made a direct and positive impact on their bottom line.

Firms need to develop talented female managers

Colleen Coates

Men are still more than twice as likely to hold a senior management position as their female colleagues — a ratio that has not changed much within the past two decades despite the fact that women have made tremendous progress. Those who have achieved a greater gender balance in senior management ranks are to be applauded.

According to a 2009 report from the Conference Board of Canada, women make up almost 48 per cent of the talent pool and yet, only 0.32 per cent hold executive positions. It’s concerning that women are still significantly underrepresented in the upper echelon of the workforce. Although most organizations say they support diversity and the development of future leaders, women in top leadership roles seem to still be the exception, not the rule.

CEO Don Streuber of Bison Transport on the Long haul ‘family’

John McFerran

Every employee is a spoke in the wheel at Bison Transport

This spring, Bison Transport became a five-time grand prize winner of the National Fleet Safety Award (an unparalleled industry achievement) and was recognized as one of the Best Fleets to Drive For by the Truckload Carriers Association. Yet, as impressive as the accolades that Bison continues to amass, the company simply views it as business as usual.

Is your staff engaged or just satisfied?

Colleen Coates

A recent study by the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) found that even though employees may be satisfied with their jobs, it does not automatically translate into having an engaged workforce.

In fact, while 83 per cent of employees said they were generally satisfied with their current positions, only 68 per cent claimed to feel passion and excitement and just 53 per cent felt tuned in at work.

These gaps are a troubling discovery for managers who want to motivate their people and drive organizational performance. While appearances might lead them to believe they have an engaged workplace, there may be serious cracks forming just below the seemingly smooth surface.

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