Cross-training employees in multiple work areas can be particularly helpful for many organizations. When employees are cross-trained they are provided an opportunity to learn new skill sets. This allows an organization to increase productivity and develop a more dynamic workforce for future needs. Additionally, cross training helps managers recognize competitive talents and place employees in positions for which they are best suited.
Recent research has shown that sitting for more than three to four hours a day can take up to two years off of someone’s life. Shockingly enough, exercise will not reverse the damage that sitting for extending periods of time will cause. Workers in offices everywhere are faced with a huge health hazard, as they are often restrained to sitting at a desk to do their work. A sedentary lifestyle at work in addition to an inactive home life can cause serious health concerns for many employees, which means higher medical and healthcare costs for employers.
The average number of hours Americans presently work each week is the highest it has been in nearly 75 years. The average American works approximately 47.1 hours each week, with some employees working up to even 70 hours a week. In addition, employees have many responsibilities outside of the workplace that create added stress in their lives. These stressors include parenting, taking care of aging relatives, keeping up with bills, or uneven division of labor at home. Long hours and personal responsibilities result in a constant struggle to balance work and home life. However, devoting an equal amount of time for both work and personal life is simply unrealistic for most employees.
Workplace coaching and mentoring are sometimes difficult to distinguish from one another, however, both share similarities that help to improve employee productivity, overall work-related effectiveness and organizational culture. Both mentors and coaches rely on using strong interpersonal communication and intentional coaching skills to enhance professional and personal learning and help to develop and achieve employee goals. Coaches and mentors also help to support an individual’s successes and help in their professional advancement in the workplace.
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), about 2 million U.S. workers are victims of some kind of workplace violence every year. The ultimate impact of a crisis, in costs to a company and its people, is determined by how that crisis was addressed before, during and after an actual event. That being said, it is essential that an organization remains a place of safety and solace for its most valuable assets: employees. Organizations must pay greater attention to the impact of critical events on employees, their families and the community as a whole for one simple reason: business recovery cannot occur without motivated employees.
One of the biggest issues many organizations face today is inspiring leadership. When leadership is viewed as the creation of value through authentic self-expression we see that it is found at all levels within the organization, not just at the top. Some leaders create value through ideas, some through people, some through projects and some through systems. Leaders come in all sizes, colors, personality types and preferences.
Earlier this year the CEO of Yahoo, Marissa Mayer, made an organizational-wide decision to ban telecommuting options for all employees. This decision sparked national debate among US companies on whether or not telecommuting is a beneficial and viable work option for employees. Regardless of a company’s stance on the issue, it’s no question that telecommuting has become a widely popular option among the US workforce. According to a survey conducted by Korn/Ferry International, almost 80% of respondents indicated that their company allows employees to telecommute. In addition 58% of those surveyed indicated that they themselves work remotely.
A healthy workplace should empower workers to learn new skills, gain new knowledge and grow personally and professionally. Employee empowerment is the process of allowing employees to have input and control over their work, and the ability to openly share suggestions and ideas about their job and the organization as a whole. Empowered employees are committed, loyal and conscientious. They are eager to share ideas and can serve as strong ambassadors for their organizations.
Stress is an unavoidable part of our daily lives. As we face changing times, as well as competing demands to balance work, family, finances, friends and pastimes, stress and tension can abound. While life can never be stress-free, stress can be managed in a productive way. Rather than allowing ourselves to be placed in positions of constant stress, we could choose to focus instead on managing our time more effectively. Time management is really about managing ourselves in relation to time
The recent tragic events in Boston have once again raised concern about the possibility of violence in our homes, communities, and organizations. With the frequency of these violent acts occurring, it is critical for organizations to minimize the potential for violence and have a plan to communicate where to turn when facing a threat. In addition, it is vital that organizations to have timely access to professional support should violence occur.