People First HR Services

How much salary is too much?

Colleen Coates

Optics play a big role in determining executive pay at a non-profit

We’ve all seen the media headlines scream CEO earns $250,000 or Head of organization gets $100,000 bonus. Recent Free Press headlines shouted Auditor general questions wages. This headline, like others, raised questions about executive salaries and left us to wonder, “Is it too much? How much is too much? Is there such a thing as too much?”

Recently I delivered a report presentation to a board of directors who asked me that very same question. Here’s a list of points that was offered to them for consideration:

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.

Top challenges for businesses in 2013

Colleen Coates

As we ring in the new year, it is often a time to pause and reflect on past successes and maybe some transgressions with hopes of improving in the coming year. I asked three of our resident wise men and women what troubled our clients the most over the past year and how they planned to reduce their woes. Our industry experts provide uniquely valuable insight to help business leaders attract and reward the people who will ensure they continue to succeed by enabling their employees to do well at every stage of their career. Here are the top three common challenges our experts saw in 2012:

Treating customers kindly increases loyalty, business

Colleen Coates

Remember when a friendly greeting and a genuine smile used to be part of doing business? It may sound old-fashioned, but it wasn’t all that long ago that making a customer feel special — not the lowest price or fastest shipping — is what won their loyalty and kept them coming back.

In these fast-paced, technology-driven times we live in, when most business transactions occur online and not in person, we seem to have lost touch with the importance of being kind to one another. And yet, none of us have lost the desire to be treated kindly, nor has technology changed the value of kindness. Without costing a penny, it is still the most effective way to build greater brand awareness, boost customer loyalty and keep employees happy.

Don’t plan budget for salaries in isolation

Colleen Coates

Now is the time when many human resource practitioners and compensation professionals begin the annual review of their reward programs — with a particular focus on planning for 2013 salary increases.

Questions such as “How competitive are we?” and “How much do we need to spend next year?” are what keep my phone ringing this time of year as clients search for answers.

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.

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.

Job Enrichment: Solutions for retaining ‘X’ and ‘Y’

People First

No matter the sector, businesses are always seeking ways to retain and motivate their employers.  The Canadian Association of Agri-Retailers knows its members are no different.  In the April edition of their magazine, the CAAR Communicator, they address some important considerations for businesses to keep in mind.  Looking for an expert option, the Association approached our own Colleen Coates, National Practice Leader Total Compensation to provide her insights on the topic.

“To sum up,” says Coates, “organizations need to focus on talent management strategies to ensure that employee engagement thrives.”

Read the full article here.

Top 10 must-have HR policies for Manitoba employers

Colleen Coates

 Losing someone close to you is one of the most difficult things a person can go through. As an employer, you may wonder what you can do to help a staff member through this difficult time.

One of the most important things you can do is to give them time — not only time to grieve, but time to manage the often staggering amount of planning, organizing, and paperwork that must be completed to prepare for a funeral if they are entrusted with this incredible responsibility. Having recently lost a close family member, I was shocked at the amount of time needed to complete the arrangements along with necessary legalities. The fortunate ones, like me, have an employer who is not only understanding, but also a leader in better people practices.

Jim Slater of Diagnostic Services of Manitoba on the challenge of centralizing

John McFerran

Introducing centralized system presents people challenges

Every year, more than 15 million diagnostic tests are ordered from Manitoba’s public sector — and that’s not including an additional eight to 10 million tests conducted in private facilities.

“Eighty-five per cent of all medical decisions are based on some kind of lab or medical imaging result,” says Jim Slater, CEO of Diagnostic Services of Manitoba (DSM), the non-profit corporation responsible for delivering public laboratory and rural diagnostic imaging services supported by over 1,500 professionals at 79 sites.

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