This blog was originally published on the Willis Towers Watson Wire, February 15, 2018.
In today’s talent management environment, the most successful employers are the ones who listen. In Willis Towers Watson’s 2017/2018 Global Benefits Attitudes Survey, we see that benefits are more important to employees than ever before. While retirement and medical benefits tend to top employees’ list of priorities, paid time off ranks relatively high around the world. Additionally, the topics of workforce flexibility and work-life balance continue to receive significant attention from employers who want to attract, retain and engage talent. More and more, top employers give prominence to employee success, satisfaction and security outside of the workplace, as well as within, as part of their employee value proposition, in effort to help them stand apart from competitors vying for the same talent pool.
In our first blog post about Change Leadership, we talked about the hallmark of a great change leader as being able to navigate complex organizations, understanding what makes people tick and using that knowledge to inspire and motivate change.
Well, no matter how good you are at doing that, if all your employees are hearing is “blah, blah, blah,” they won’t get the vision for the change, grasp what success looks like for the company, nor understand what’s in it for them, how it affects them and how they can help make it happen.
The best trick is to figure out how to strike the right balance between the serious nature of the change and conveying the details of all noted above, while avoiding corporate speak, high-level platitudes and the 'blah, blah, blah' of many change initiatives.
Another important thing to remember is that employees are people, and people like to laugh and have fun — and pay attention more when they do. I know I do! Here are some suggestions I've used on many of my change projects for making change more fun when possible. However, I would love to expand this with suggestions from all of YOU! Chime in to the comments below and share your tactics for overcoming the blah.
Hiring the right employees for your organization is critical and using behavioral-based interview questions can improve your interview process. It’s important to assess candidates for the job as well as for overall fit with your organization’s culture. But did you know that 46% of companies are not using organizational or functional competencies to assess candidates? (2016 Willis Towers Watson Global Talent Management & Rewards Study – U.S.) Talk about a missed opportunity!
It’s no secret that in order to successfully attract and retain talent, employers must establish competitive and sustainable pay policies. But often, much attention goes towards determining “how much” and “who” without taking other facets of reward into consideration. In many markets around the world, getting pay right may also involve other aspects, such as “what” in terms of specific elements and sometimes even “when” they must be paid. Pay aspects such as these may be statutory obligations for employers, mandated by collective agreements or simply customary practice in specific markets. What’s more, local tax treatment may incentivize specific elements of pay but that’s helpful only if employers are aware of the programs and their benefits. For ‘new’ employers in a market, ignorance is not blissful. Rather, it’s often expensive, both in terms of controllable employment costs as well as employers’ long-term ability to retain staff.
We’ve all been there. Holiday shopping for friends, family and co-workers can be challenging. What mom likes is different from what little Timmy wants, which is again different from that new gadget your boss can’t stop talking about. Gifts also depend on the holiday: Birthday’s, Christmas, Anniversary’s, Valentine’s Day, the list goes on and on…
American companies expand overseas for a variety of reasons: proximity to new clients, possibilities to achieve new efficiencies, promises for better support for existing clients. The ultimate drivers are found in countless variables such as sector, business model and maturity, among others. But regardless of the initial reasons, sooner or later, the comparative cost of labor among countries will come up. While questions that usually arise seem simple on the surface, getting to the right answers requires digging into the details and scratching the surface. One particularly influential aspect can be statutory and mandatory costs that employers may be obliged to pay for social security and other employee benefit plans.
More often than not, change initiatives fail. In fact, the brutal truth is that over 70% of change initiatives fail because they focus solely on rational aspects such as systems, processes and skills. Leaders often neglect to address the human elements that accompany major transitions, including the different emotional journeys people experience, multiple vested interests that are often present, and a whole diversity of perspectives on, and reactions to, any particular change.
Career advancement is important. Really important. In fact, both employees and companies rank career advancement opportunities among the top three drivers of attraction and retention (2016 Willis Towers Watson Global Workforce and Global Talent Management & Rewards Studies – U.S.).