Search Results for: motivation

More employers than ever introduce some kind of flexible working pattern

More employers than ever introducing some kind of flexible working patterns

Disenchantment with flexible working appears to be ongoing in the tech sector, with a recent report revealing that computing giant HP is following Yahoo’s lead by quietly discouraging staff from working from home. However, more employers than ever are attaching growing importance to making at least some changes to working patterns as a means of managing rising long-term absence levels. In the annual CIPD / Simplyhealth Absence Management, the number of employers introducing small changes, such as later start times, has increased by 20 per cent in the last year alone. Over 70 per cent of organisations report a positive impact on employee motivation and employee engagement, while a further 46 per cent are using flexible working options to support employees with mental health problems. More →

Stress taboo is the elephant in the room in many workplaces

Stress taboo is the elephant in the room in many workplaces

Attitudes towards mental ill health are supposed to be more enlightened these days, but the fact that a large supermarket chain would sanction the sale of a “mental patient” Halloween outfit shows that in business, there is some way to go. The mental health charity Mind, which received an apology and a donation from Asda following the withdrawal of the offending outfit, has published new statistics today which reveals 42 per cent of employees believe that in their workplace, stress and mental ill health is regarded as a sign of weakness or that you can’t cope. 45 per cent of workers said that staff are expected to cope without mentioning stress at work and a third (31%) would not be able to talk openly to their line manager if they felt stressed. More →

Report: How will the future affect us or can we effect the future?

 How will the future affect us or can we effect the future

Workplace furniture specialist Kinnarps has published its Trend Report 2013, which is the culmination of detailed research across European markets and thought leaders, conducted in partnership with Stockholm based futurologists Kairos Future. The study distilled a broad overview of emerging and established trends, across Kinnarps’ European markets, to focus on eight key themes that will influence the workplace of the future. According to the report, big changes are already apparent in our society, but these will come to have an altogether greater impact on the way we evaluate our working environment. More →

Workplace wellness initiatives improve job morale, satisfaction and performance

It emerged this week that workplace wellness programs may not be as effective as previously thought in creating a healthier workforce and, of particular relevance for US firms, reducing health-care costs, but another US study paints a more positive picture. While concurring that determining the bottom-line impact of wellness programs continues to be a challenge for employers, this latest study does find a strong link between the wellness and vitality of an organisation and the health and wellness of its employees, which impacts directly on employees’ increased job morale, satisfaction, commitment and performance. The survey of approximately 1,300 businesses and 10,000 employees conducted by Virgin HealthMiles, Inc.  found that workers also place a premium on the culture of wellness with 87 per cent claiming that health and wellness initiatives play a role in determining their employer of choice. More →

Video: people feel good at work when they know it has meaning

Video: people feel good at work when they know it has meaning

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More evidence stacks up about what motivates people, including in the workplace. One thing that all the research shows about how to help people feel good at work is that motivation is a complex issue. It is not about money or joy or fun or an easy life. The things that are important include the challenge of overcoming difficult problems, a sense of achievement and an understanding that the work they do is acknowledged and makes a genuine contribution. The one thing to avoid is futility and the thing to aim for is meaning even in small ways. All of this research challenges the assumption that people are essentially economic creatures and that we can make them feel better by making isolated changes to their working environment.

Where flexible working employees really want to work? Starbucks.

Starbucks CafeLeaving aside the fact that most surveys are designed to further the commercial interests of the firms that commission them, most offer a deal of insight into what drives people and organisations, some of it unwitting. Most telling are often the specific details that lift the veil on the motivations and attitudes of individuals. So it was with a recent survey from Overbury that headlined on the idea that poorly designed offices hamper creativity, but also contained a question that was answered in a way which suggested that the place most staff would like to work would be something akin to their local Starbucks.

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Google and Yahoo office strategies teach us the value of the velvet glove

Velvet gloveIt’s a week now since the whole Yahoo-ha kicked off and since that time everybody has had their say on the matter including – refreshingly – those in the mainstream media. The story has followed its own narrative arc, from the initial gasps of horror at Yahoo’s audacious challenge to a cherished piece of contemporary received wisdom (coupled with the reminder that Yahoo still exists) to something more thoughtful and circumspect as we learned more about the thinking behind the decision.What has become apparent is that Yahoo’s actions were based on a tacit understanding that people work better on certain tasks when they are together.

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Video: ‘We are not as endlessly predictable as you would think’


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An old one, but still my favourite from the RSA Animate series. It’s always worth reminding ourselves that the issue of motivation is very complex. People are not machines and function within the context of a whirl of emotions, relationships, influences, events, crises, stimuli, personal characteristics and thoughts.  That is why many of our assumptions about motivation are false. One of the presentation’s more important conclusions – that we are purpose maximisers as much as profit maximisers – is supported by the story we published this morning.

Employee burnout commonplace in third of UK companies


Employee burnout is endemic within a third of UK organisations. According to new research from recruitment specialist Robert Half UK three out of ten (30 per cent) UK HR directors reported high levels of employee burnout, which rises to more than a third (35 per cent) for those in London and the South East and publicly listed companies. Two thirds (67 per cent) of UK HR directors cite “workload” as the primary reason for employee burnout, although this figure rises to three quarters (75 per cent) for large and 73 per cent for public sector companies. More →

“Groundbreaking” guidance on drivers for social change

Network for business sustainability

Businesses can play a key role in driving social change according to a groundbreaking new report. Whether through product labelling, supply chain management, employee volunteerism and partnerships with non-government organisations (NGOs), companies have the power to help people get active, eat healthy foods, use less energy and live more sustainable lives. Now a new guide based on a review of 123 studies from the last 20 years, released by the Network for Business Sustainability (NBS) provides the evidence for any business interested in cause marketing, social innovation or responsible consumption. More →

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