Dr. Jason’s Speak Life™ Newsletter – Volume 7 Issue 11
Inside This Issue
• Is A Flexible Work Environment Right For Your Team?
• Message from the President
• Consulting Focus: Leadership Transitions
• Industry Perspectives
Is A Flexible Work Environment Right For Your Team?
Many progressive businesses and organizations are adopting flexible work policies to accommodate the busy lifestyles of employees and team members. It is not uncommon for considerations to be made for employees to work from home. New technologies have made it easy to allow this type of flexibility. Email, instant messaging, phone or video conferencing, mobile devices and cloud computing all help facilitate non-traditional work environments.
As an organization, you may be able to attract higher quality workers by offering these types of incentives. This also helps team members maintain a healthy work-life balance. While the benefits are clear, there may also be some challenges.
Your business should consider the following factors when deciding on whether or not to offer flexible working:
1. Cost. There is often a cost savings to both the employee and the business in offering flexible work arrangements. These include commuting costs, equipment and facilities costs, and overhead. On the other hand, this policy can potentially be more expensive in some areas.
2. Employee satisfaction. Will flexible result in more a satisfied workforce? In most cases the answer is yes. Employees say that they value the time they have available for family and outside interests.
3. Efficiencies. Will it be more or less efficient to have team members in the office every day? Can more productivity occur off-site?
4. Employee acquisition and retention. Are there quality employees that your firm would not be able to otherwise attract with a flex policy? Will this perk keep your valuable team members in place for the long term?
5. Communication. Will the lack of face-to-face interaction be a concern? How will important information be disseminated to workgroups?
6. Security concerns. How will team members access company networks? Does this create the potential for security risks?
Many companies today offer some form of work flexibility to employees. As a leader, you should carefully consider the impact of providing this option to improve the performance of your teams.
Message from the President
“You should make it a habit to cultivate an attitude of gratefulness…”
As we celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday later this month, it is a good reminder that we should always show appreciation to people who have helped us achieve our current status—especially when they do not have to do so. As leaders, always remember to appreciate your followers for their efforts and commitment to your organization. Let them know you value their hard work and loyalty.
You should make it a habit to cultivate an attitude of gratefulness—not just in November, but throughout the entire year. People who are thankful do not have time to complain. Grateful people tend to be more fulfilled because they are more focused on the positives. Being thankful does not mean that everything is going well. Truly grateful people are appreciative even when circumstances are not the best. The original Pilgrims who celebrated that first Thanksgiving in the New World experienced many devastating hardships that year, yet they still understood the importance of giving thanks. Thankfulness can be contagious. Give thanks!
Consulting Focus: Leadership Transitions
Managing change effectively is a very important skill in the current business climate. As businesses and organizations change, often a transition of leadership occurs. This transition can be the result of attrition, a merger or takeover, reorganization, or simply a change in company direction. The transition of leadership can be a costly disruption or a welcomed improvement. How this changeover is handled has everything to do with the success of the organization moving forward. Resilience is critical when change occurs—especially when it is unexpected.
In some firms, leadership transition is a frequent occurrence. Managers or executives are moved from department to department or location to location on a regular basis. In other organizations, this type of movement is relatively rare. Depending on how long the outgoing leader was in place, the “changing of the guard” can be a lengthy process. It can also be very challenging if there is a major difference in leadership styles between the two leaders or leadership groups. The incoming leader must understand the environment and help the team see the new vision of the organization. Team members must be receptive to the change and buy into the new direction for success to occur.
Relationships and roles often change when a transition occurs. Getting support is a key element to a successful transition. All parties must work together toward the common goal. There must also be a willingness to learn. This may entail learning new skills as well as learning people.
With a client-consultant relationship, as in any relationship, it may take time to find the right fit. Even after having done your research and getting recommendations, you may find that the consultant your organization engaged is not producing the results you anticipated. The fact that there is incompatibility with your consultant does not mean that he or she is a bad consultant. It could simply be a difference in philosophy or approach. It may become necessary at some point to part ways with your consultant. As difficult as it can be to replace a consultant, it is better to do so early in the relationship than to wait until potential problems escalate. Waiting can prove harmful to the organization. Every effort should be made to remain professional during this delicate process. You may need the services of that individual in the future. You also do not want to damage your reputation in the process or create any negative repercussions. When the client-consultant match is right, there will be mutual satisfaction between the parties.