Who should break the bad news?

first_imgIn the first of a new column, Jenny Davenport advises choosing the messengerto suit the message It’s redundancy time again with organisations back in restructuring anddownsizing mode. It raises some particular challenges for internalcommunication. The issue organisations most often bungle is the choice of messenger. Surveyafter survey shows that line managers are the preferred and most crediblecommunicators for most topics with their teams. They can make the information relevant to their teams and people rarely feelconstrained about expressing their views in the safety of their own teammeetings. So with a good feedback system, the organisation can have a quicksense of people’s reactions. However, it is worth considering when line managers are not the rightmessengers. This can be when the information is outside their experience and they cannotadd value to it by explaining the relevance to the team, or reasonably answerquestions about it. This scenario might include for example major strategicchange. This sort of communication is best done by more senior managers and bywritten material which people can absorb at their leisure. The right time formanagers to be the channel for communication is when plans are beingcontemplated. Line managers are also not the most appropriate when decisions are beingcontemplated or communicated that are potentially worse news for managers thantheir teams. In one bad example, an organisation was centralising a service. It wasformerly provided by a number of regional departments, but surveys indicatedthat customers wanted a consistent service no matter where in the country theywere. Regional managers were to lose some of their responsibilities, but theywere the only losers. There would be no danger of job losses to their teams. It was indeed good news for some team members who were bearing the brunt ofdiscontented customers complaining about the variable service. The organisation had an excellent and well-established team-briefing system,which was used to communicate this change without really considering how themessage would be relayed by angry regional managers. There was uproar among their teams, with an inundation of furious feedbackforms and quite unnecessary indignation. The lesson learned was that when themessage is bad news for managers or team leaders, make sure a more seniormanager does the communicating. Jenny Davenport, director of People in Business Related posts:No related photos. Who should break the bad news?On 6 Nov 2001 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. last_img read more

Haringey is rising to the e-government challenge

first_imgCase study: Tony Blair has called on all local government tobe prepared to offer its services online to the public 24-hours a day by 2005.Sue Weekes looks at how the borough of Haringey in coping with the e-governmentchallengeYou would have to be from another planet not to be aware that Prime MinisterTony Blair is keen for all UK citizens to be online by 2005. And being such a believer in electronic service delivery, Blair’s‘e-government’ challenge dem-ands that all local government is able to offerits services online to the public, 24 hours a day, within the same timeframe.Given that, historically, local authorities are not exactly trailblazers whenit comes to leading-edge technology, meeting the e-gov challenge can be easiersaid than done. Haringey, one of London’s 33 boroughs, is currently in what it calls ‘theblueprint stage’ of making the transition, which includes a major e-HRcomponent. But for Haringey the project is not just about installing new technology. Itis also about re-organising and re-engineering business processes to maximisetheir benefit and this will include fully integrating personnel and financefunctions. “Our aim is to streamline business processes, increase andimprove our management information capacity and improve our business unitmanagers’ accountability,” says head of personnel Stuart Young. “Itwill manage the back-room bureaucracy of the council.” Haringey’s approach serves as a model to any corporate engaged in a similarprocess. It has assembled a 30-strong team, including a project board thatcomprises the head of corporate finance, head of procurement and head of personnel,a number of project champions from various disciplines, project manager, achange management team, external consultants, as well as overall projectsponsor and director of finance Andrew Travers. “We have been keen to havethe best staff involved all along in the project,” says Young, explainingthat the project team sits in a completely different room away from thecouncil’s day-to-day business. “It has put pressure on those remaining but we know we needed toresource the project fully and have provided cover for those working onit,” he says. Playing a vital part in the team are consultants from Haringey’s appointedIT suppliers, Logica and Pecaso. The latter is a leader in e-HR technologiesand a major supplier and integrator of SAP systems across Europe. Pecaso isconcerned with the HR and payroll applications of the project and isimplementing a pre-configured template for local government based on experiencegained from work for Lincolnshire County Council, the London Borough ofSouthwark and Salford City Council. Based around mySAP, the system is already tailored to the specificrequirements of local authorities with appropriate organisational structures,local government pay scales and standard schemes for occupational sickness,maternity leave and car mileage built in. It will be further tailored forHaringey’s needs. The pre-configured solution reduces the burden and risk of new technology tothe borough, especially in complex areas like payroll. “It allows Haringey to focus the business processes side and changemanagement aspects,” says Tim Bradley, responsible for the project atPecaso. “We are pleased to be a part of the Government’s e-business initiative.There is no reason why the public sector should not be as leading edge asprivate companies and Haringey looks set to be among the first to reap thebenefits.” The system is due to go live at the end of the year. Finance and procurementwill go live first, followed by payroll. Members of Haringey’s workforce willbe able to access mySAP and will be able to use it for online procurement andsome self-service HR functions, such as booking holiday online and ultimatelyinputting personal details and choosing training options. Young is also keen to stress the performance management asp-ects of thesystem with managers able to use the management reporting tools to enable themto identify staff turnover and workflow in real time: “We are afinancially stable borough and have a performance agenda and this system willsit behind this agenda and drive it all.” Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. Related posts:No related photos. Haringey is rising to the e-government challengeOn 7 May 2002 in Personnel Todaylast_img read more

High in the sky: Europe’s tallest penthouse hits market

first_imgShare via Shortlink Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on LinkedinShare via Email Share via Shortlink Three-level penthouse in Moscow’s Federation Tower (Sotheby’s International Realty, Wikimedia Commons) The tallest penthouse in Europe has hit the market, and it’s so big the buyer may never need to leave.The three-level, 23,000-square-foot penthouse at Moscow’s Federation Tower has an asking price of $35 million, according to the New York Post.The unit stretches across the top three floors of the 97-story building at Federation Tower, which contrary to its name has two towers built on one podium.The penthouse’s most notable features are its three-level staircase and the floor-to-ceiling windows that in some parts of the unit stretch up all three levels. The windows have massive panes with virtually unobstructed views of the city. The ceilings in some spaces also span all three levels, such as in a main lounge area at the base of the spiral staircase.The pandemic has hurt demand for ultra-luxury penthouse units, partially because restrictions on international travel make it difficult for potential foreign buyers to see units, but plenty of big-ticket deals are still closing. On Wednesday, the penthouse at 111 West 57th Street in Manhattan went into contract for $50 million.Construction on Federation Tower began in 2005 but was delayed during the Great Recession. It was completed in 2017. It was the tallest skyscraper in Europe until the Lakhta Center, an office tower in Saint Petersburg, Russia, was completed last year.[NYP] — Dennis Lynchcenter_img TagsEuropePenthouseRussialast_img read more

Scoreboard roundup — 1/6/21

first_img Written by FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailiStockBy ABC News(NEW YORK) — Here are the scores from Wednesday’s sports events:NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATIONOrlando 105, Cleveland 94Indiana 114, Houston 107Philadelphia 141, Washington 136New York 112, Utah 100Charlotte 102, Atlanta 94Boston 107, Miami 105Oklahoma City 111, New Orleans 110Milwaukee 130, Detroit 115Phoenix 123, Toronto 115Sacramento 128, Chicago 124LA Clippers 108, Golden State 101TOP-25 COLLEGE BASKETBALLBaylor 76, Oklahoma 61Creighton 89, Seton Hall 53Tennessee 79, Arkansas 74Michigan 82, Minnesota 57Houston 70, Wichita St. 63Louisville 73, Virginia Tech 71Duke 83, Boston College 82Virginia 70, Wake Forest 61Saint Louis at La Salle (Postponed)Florida St. at Syracuse (Postponed)Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved. January 7, 2021 /Sports News – National Scoreboard roundup — 1/6/21center_img Beau Lundlast_img read more

Agent removes gates from branch entrance after negative publicity

first_imgAn estate agent in Kent has removed gates it erected outside the company’s branch to prevent a homeless man and his dog sleeping in its doorway and apologised for any offence caused.Whitstable firm Harvey Richards & West erected the spiked gates after the homeless man began using the space to sleep in overnight, but a deluge of local and national newspaper coverage on Friday, as well as negative local social media commentary is thought to have led to the company’s change of heart.The agency has issued a statement saying that it regretted any offence caused by putting up the gate late last week and that it was a ‘last resort’ action and that with the benefit of hindsight it has now removed the gate.“As a small independent business which operates outside of normal working hours, sometimes up until 7pm or 8 pm, staff have been having trouble accessing the office late in the evening,” it says.“We have had a few conversations with the young man explaining this but unfortunately the office access remained an issue.”The company says clients phoned the agency to report mess outside the branch at weekends and also anti-social behaviour.“This has been an extremely difficult issue to handle especially at this time of year and HRW hope he is found accommodation soon and can categorically state that we did not intend to cause him or anyone else offence or upset so profoundly apologise,” the company says. December 16, 2019Nigel LewisWhat’s your opinion? Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment.Please note: This is a site for professional discussion. Comments will carry your full name and company.This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.Related articles Letting agent fined £11,500 over unlicenced rent-to-rent HMO3rd May 2021 BREAKING: Evictions paperwork must now include ‘breathing space’ scheme details30th April 2021 City dwellers most satisfied with where they live30th April 2021 Home » News » Agencies & People » Agent removes gates from branch entrance after negative publicity previous nextAgencies & PeopleAgent removes gates from branch entrance after negative publicityWhitstable estate agency Harvey Richards & West says decision to erect gate was ‘last resort’ after problems with homeless young man.Nigel Lewis16th December 20190783 Viewslast_img read more

Video: Mystery Mime Part I

first_imgThe first of the exciting new Mystery Mime series! Guess what Dep Ed Dan is singing this week… Leave comments below!last_img


first_imgWHATS ON YOUR MIND TODAY?“IS IT TRUE” will be posted on this coming Monday.Todays READERS POLL question is: Do you support Councilman Dan McGinn’s Homestead Tax Credit resolution that reduces the percentages of our tax credits?Please take time and read our newest feature articles entitled “HOT JOBS” and “LOCAL SPORTS” posted in our sections.If you would like to advertise in the CCO please contact us City-County [email protected] County Observer has been serving our community for 15 years.Copyright 2015 City County Observer. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistribute.FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailSharelast_img read more


first_imgAlthough my grandfather ran a bakery, the industry didn’t appeal to me at first, and I joined the RAF when I left school before taking a job as a security guard at Asda in Dudley. A vacancy came up in the bakery department as a trainee baker and I originally took it because it meant working longer hours.However, I soon realised how much I enjoyed the job and wanted to learn more about the business. After doing the Asda training course, I decided to study bakery and I’m now doing my NVQ Level 3 at the Birmingham College of Food, Tourism and Creative Studies. When I wasn’t sure where to go, the National Association of Master Bakers gave me the information about courses and were really helpful – I don’t think I’d be where I am now if they hadn’t spoken to them, and I think I might join as a member one day.I go to college once a week, on one of my days off from the store, and my bakery manager has been really supportive; last year, college was on a Friday, which is a really busy day in the store, but he changed the rotas so I could go. Doing well in the competition has been a good way to say thank you, and both he and my college are really proud of me.I’m lucky because I like what I do; it doesn’t feel like work and I don’t mind the fact that I only get one day off a week. Last year at college we studied the basics, such as kneading dough, mixing and weighing up, which was useful because at Asda we use sachets of pre-mix to make the bread. So far this year, we’ve learned knife skills and gateaux-making and we’ll also be studying product development, which is even more interesting. I love coming up with new ideas and I’ll often do that in my spare time as there’s no room to do that at work. For the Award [sponsored by British Sugar], I came up with products such as a children’s cake, made with a shortbread base, topped with a sponge and cut in a cone shape, covered with icing.At Asda, I can be baking bread, baps or cakes, and often help merchandise the shelves. There’s nothing I don’t like about my job – but ask me again in another five years!A lot of people at college study full-time and some think I’m at a disadvantage as I only go part-time, but actually, I think I’m privileged as I get paid to do a job I enjoy and Asda gives me the chance to learn too – I get the best of both worlds.When I’m at home, I particularly like making foreign breads; it’s nice to be able to use different ingredients to make products and I think they also taste better. I’ve made bread for friends before, but they don’t seem to appreciate it as much as I do!It’s really important to get young people interested in bread and baking. I’d also like to see a lot more craft bakers around, in every town and village. It’s got to the stage where most people just go to a supermarket to buy a sliced loaf. There’s a danger that we’re losing all the traditional skills. That’s why my ambition is to have my own craft bakery after a few years – and I’m determined to do that. nlast_img read more

HGSE Longfellow renovation receives LEED Platinum certification

first_imgThe Harvard Graduate School of Education’s 2015 renovation of Longfellow Hall has received LEED Platinum certification – the highest rating possible—from the U.S. Green Building Council. “This new energy efficient, healthy space will enhance productivity and improve the experience for our students, faculty, and staff by allowing for better collaboration and connection,” says Chief of Operations Jason Carlson, noting that this is HGSE’s third platinum project and fifth certification. The intent of the renovation was to meet the growing teaching and learning needs of the School and to create a more cohesive campus by adding additional space to support the relocation of HGSE’s Executive Education and Project Zero Programs. Despite an increase in overall square footage, due to a new penthouse addition, the project team was able to keep the environmental footprint of the building the same as pre-renovation.Last updated in the 1940s, improvements to Longfellow Hall’s infrastructure included efficiency updates to the boiler plant, installation of energy recovery units for enhanced ventilation, and substantial insulation upgrades to ensure reduced energy usage. The building is expected to use 39 percent less lighting power. One innovative energy-saving strategy employed is the use of step-dimming. While not a new strategy, the Operations Team at HGSE decided to program occupancy sensors to turn light fixtures on at half illumination, allowing occupants to increase as needed, versus the typical setting of full illumination. First used at HGSE’s Gutman Library, it was observed that most building occupants left their lights at the lower settings. Read Full Storylast_img read more

Weekend Pick: Illumination and More at Hardywood Park Brewery

first_imgWe are coming down the home stretch of the holiday season. This can be a tense time for a multitude of reasons. Maybe your in-laws are coming to town and you’re house is a complete wreck and your guest room is non-existent, buried under piles of dirty clothes and pizza boxes (c’mon guys, you really should clean that up). Maybe you still have some shopping left to do, or maybe you haven’t started yet. Maybe you are an anti-consumerist and have spent the past month outside Target yelling at people to stop buying stuff. Maybe you are Ebenezer Scrooge, Scrooge McDuck, or maybe you don’t really hate Christmas but feel like you have to because you have Scrooge as a middle name and need to keep up appearances.Whatever the reason, we feel you. Christmas time can be a hard time, even unbearable, for some and even the most joyous can have moments of melancholy when they can’t find a parking spot at the shopping center, let their tree run dry, or find out THE LAST DAMN ELMO DOLL WAS SOLD 10 MINUTES AGO. But here’s the thing, this time of year is about celebrating the good things that happen despite the chaos raging all around us. It’s a time to kick back, relax, listen to Mariah Carey’s “All I Want For Christmas,” and reflect on what really matters in this world.What really matters is beer, festive lights, and possibly even some Shakespearean drinking games.If these things matter to you – and they should – take a break from the hustle to visit Richmond’s Hardywood Park Brewery this weekend. They are pulling out all the stops for the last weekend before the big day with events on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday for the beer drinking public.The festivities kick off with a live performance by the Hot Seats. They will be playing old time, bluegrass, and stringband starting at 6pm.The main event is Saturday’s 3rd Annual Illumination solstice celebration. The brewery will be screening the holiday classic National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation on the big screen beginning at 4pm. Tribe of Soul will play a holiday set starting at 6pm, and The Green Hearts will play power chords at 7:15pm. The draft lineup will include everything under the sun from Hardywood Park Brewery including select 2013 Reserve Series beers, barrel aged stouts, holiday twists on the Russian Imperial Stout, and of course Gingerbread Stout (plus Gingerbread on nitro).Festivities wrap on Sunday with a truly unique event: Shakesbeer at Bardywood, Part One: The Drinking Scenes. I’ll let the people in charge explain: “A company of actors will take over the brew house and play some of Shakespeare’s tipsiest scenes in and among the crowd. Come toast along with the characters, sing carols and celebrate the spirit(s) of the season. Santa gives the good children toys, but Santa gives the adults (both naughty and nice) Shakesbeer at Bardywood! So shake off your inner Scrooge with some Shakesbeer and let the revels begin!”So….yeah, that sounds like a good time. See you there!last_img read more