Friday, 18 November 2011

£19b down the drain becasue of bad management

Bad management could be costing UK businesses more than £19 billion in lost working hours every year, according to a survey published today by the Chartered Management Institute (CMI).
The CMI's report suggests that three-quarters of employees waste almost two hours of their working time every week because of their managers' inefficiency.
The CMI claims that, by taking the average hours wasted in a week across the average working time of 48 weeks per year, this equates to a loss of £900 per employee and a total loss of £19.3 billion, calculated at a median value rate.
The report found that the worst management practices include unclear communication, lack of support, micro-management and lack of direction.
Christopher Kinsella, CMI acting chief executive, said: "This survey highlights some disappointing - but not necessarily surprising - numbers. With only one in five UK managers holding a professional management qualification and many organisations not properly investing in management training, it's not surprising that some managers are making mistakes in how they work.
"Yet we are in one of the hardest economic climates we've faced in some time, and business bosses need to understand the financial impacts of not having properly trained and qualified managers. Improving the skills of the management workforce is absolutely key in terms of individual business success, in terms of delivering effective public services and in terms of helping the UK deliver on a world stage."
The research also found that 13% of respondents have witnessed managers exhibiting discriminatory behaviour towards employees based on gender, race, age or sexual orientation and almost one-third have witnessed managers bullying or harassing their employees.
Responding to the findings, Ashley Ward, director at talent management organisation European Leaders, said: "Reality tells us the cost of bad management in terms of time lost is a great deal more than that indicated in today's CMI report. A great deal of time is lost as employees discuss the lack of communication from, and the behaviours of, management.
"An efficient working culture stems directly from the very top of an organisation. If a business leader actively promotes a happy work culture based on openness, transparency, good communications and gender diversity, the organisation will be far closer to the top of its game and employees will view it as a good company to work for. The successful high-growth organisations we see today all train their managers to have increased awareness of subjects like bullying and gender discrimination.
"In our experience, the 'macho' management style of the 80s and 90s no longer has a place in modern high-performing businesses. The aggressive approach we see on programmes like The Apprentice and Dragons' Den is incongruous with modern entrepreneurship."

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Nearly half (46%) of organisations gather background information on potential candidates for senior management

Nearly half (46%) of organisations gather background information on potential candidates for senior management roles using methods including criminal record disclosures and the use of candidate-checking agencies.
This is according to XpertHR's survey on recruiting senior managers, which found that, of those that carried out background checks for senior management positions, 38% obtained Criminal Record Bureau disclosures and 17% paid for candidate-checking agencies to confirm details on applications.
However, the majority of employers carrying out background checks did so through references, with nine in 10 (92%) gathering work-related references and seven in 10 (72%) collecting personal references from referees.
Personality questionnaires were also a popular selection method and were used by 50% of the 139 employers that took part in the survey.
The survey found that, on average, senior management vacancies took 10.5 weeks and cost £9,921 to fill. Those employers that used agencies faced fees of between 15% and 24% of the vacancy's annual salary.
Rachel Suff, XpertHR author of the report, commented: "The main reason why senior management recruitment costs more than filling other kinds of vacancies is that many employers pay fees to external specialist agencies.
"The most costly type of agency is one that employers in our survey make the heaviest use of - search and selection agencies, or headhunters as they are more commonly known."

Thanks to Personnel Today

Saturday, 12 November 2011

Jobs you may not think you want but have lots to offer!

Following on from yesterday's blog about what you  thought you wanted for a career but may find less than palatable is the reverse. CareerCast have graded occupations by how desirable they really are by looking at the stress, hours, pay, promotion, security etc factors. Now the commentators on their web site don't really seem to agree that these jobs are not stressful.. but it's only one factor.. just look at how low the unemployment rate is!

Most Underrated Jobs in 2011

When most of us were in elementary school, our teachers taught us to aim high in our careers and strive for such prestigious jobs as doctor, lawyer, pilot and even President. But as we learned in the years that followed, the excitement those jobs promise typically sounds a lot better than the reality. On the other hand, the jobs held by our parents, neighbours and siblings, which seemed like “normal” jobs, may actually provide many more rewards than we ever imagined.
To that end, the editors reviewed our in-depth Jobs Rated data to identify the most underrated jobs based on a range of criteria. While terms like flashy, glitzy, glamorous and prestigious aren’t typically associated with our list of underrated jobs, these careers have some great advantages that are often overlooked. They’re professions that don’t woo people with the high salaries or notoriety, but instead have characteristics that make them especially worthy. For instance, our most underrated jobs typically have median-to-higher income levels, lower stress, lower environmental dangers and lower physical demands. And even in this tight economy, all share one great attribute: a lower than average unemployment rate.
"I have the best of both worlds. I get to do the work that I want, but I don't have the high demands that a lawyer does,” says Jennifer Dahms, a paralegal at a Milwaukee law firm.. "I wouldn't say that my job is underrated. I would say it's equally balanced. I get to take vacations, leave work and have a life."
While paralegal takes top honors in our ranking, insurance agent isn’t far behind. "I think it's interesting, but not a surprise we made the list," says Sherri Primes, an Orange County, Calif., insurance agent. "It's the only career or job that I've ever had that I feel I get to do something good for people. I can impart change in people’s lives."
In order – with their US unemployment rate attached, the top ten most underrated jobs:
1.      Paralegal 4.6%
2.      Accountant 5.0%
3.      Loan Officer 7.7%
4.      Market research Analyst 7.7%
5.      Software engineer 4.6%
6.      Computer systems analyst 5.9%
7.      Insurance Broker 5.4%
8.      Dietician 3.2%
9.      Dental Hygienist 1.2%
10.  Civil Engineer 3.9%

While the paparazzi may not be knocking down their doors, the following jobs are worth a look if you’re considering changing careers. They also apply if you’re a recent graduate looking for a career that will reward you for many years to come.That is of course if your talents and motivations are suited to those roles!

Thursday, 10 November 2011

Top careers you may have thought you wanted but which do not live up to reality!

Top overrated jobs of 2011
My thanks to careercast in the USA for this gem….
There are so many aspects of our world that we can say are overrated. From reality stars (ahem…the Kardashians!) and movies (Avatar) to food (red velvet cake), fashion (hair extensions) and air travel (fees and crowds). We all have our opinions on whom and what just can’t live up to the hype.
So when thinking about our jobs, many of us enjoy careers that the rest of world perceive as great, even though we know the truth. For example, others may see your high salary and not have an understanding of the amount of work you’re required to do. Or perhaps they’re wowed by the prestige of your job title. Or maybe they’re impressed by the perks they think you receive.
To us, overrated jobs are those that on the surface seem to be outstanding, but in reality carry unrecognized downsides that can, at times, make them not so great after all. The jobs look terrific on paper, but tend to include more stress, environmental dangers and physical demands than are typically recognized, and their hiring outlook may be downright depressing.
For example, many of us would agree that senior corporate executives have a fantastic job given their power and prestige, and we have little sympathy for those who set sail with a golden parachute as their company fails. However, senior corporate executives rarely shirk their responsibilities to their employees and shareholders, and they work incredibly long hours and handle massive responsibilities that take a toll on their health and families. Thus, senior corporate executive is at the top of our list of the most overrated jobs.
The top ten jobs that made the list:
1. Corporate Executive (Senior), average income $161,141.00
2. Surgeon, average income $365,258.00
3. Physician, average income $192,065.00
4. Psychiatrist, average income $160,242.00
5. Airplane Pilot (Commercial), average income $106,153.00
6. Attorney, average income $113,211.00
7. Architect, average income $73,193.00
8. Stockbroker, average income $67,470.00
9. Real Estate Agent, average income $40,357.00
10. Photojournalist, average income $40,209.00
11. Flight Attendant, average income $40,000
12. Advertising Account Executive, $62,000
"Ultimately, it's my responsibility to run the company well enough to make sure my employees have a job, not only today but for years to come,” says W. Andrew Motsko, senior corporate executive of an Omaha communications company, who adds: “I get paid to balance the employee’s needs with those of our clients, vendors and shareholders. Even though I'm the boss, I answer to a lot of different people." Mr. Motsko says he feels his job can be overrated because it carries many responsibilities beyond his daily work at the office. “My family life and personal time many times have to take a back seat to the needs of my company.”
While a senior corporate executive takes top honors in our rankings, a job much more widely held - real estate agent – also qualifies for our overrated jobs list. "It's definitely overrated because the demands continue to be 24/7/365 to meet your client's needs," says Bill Dallman, an Arizona real estate agent who admits that the economy has taken its toll on his profession. "Sure, you may get a large paycheck for selling a house, but there's a lot more legal and financial risk to the job than just putting a sign up in the yard and doing home tours. I really enjoy the work and the people, but a person has to understand the demands of time and continuing education that are required to remain successful."
To be sure, a job that’s overrated doesn‘t mean it fails to serve an important function in our society. In fact, these jobs play an integral role in our workplace ecosystem. It’s just that the hype surrounding them sometimes makes these jobs sound much better than they really are. And, yes, we know there are plenty of people in these professions who love their jobs and couldn’t think of any other career they’d rather do. They’re simply willing to live with the fact that their job is overrated.

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Four key success factors for top leaders...and ten for failure

Leaders succeed by having strategic vision, and lose by failing to build team culture, Right Management report shows

Insights into the traits that global leaders need to be successful as well as the factors that most likely lead to their derailment according to a survey 1,400 CEOs and HR professionals by global talent and career management consultancy Right Management and the Chally Group.
Respondents cited creating a strategic vision (92%), inspiring others and maintaining leadership responsibility (62%), developing an accurate and comprehensive overview of the business (57%) and wise decision-making (55%) as the four competencies most critical for C-suite positions.

The survey identified the top 10 factors that contribute most to the failure of senior leaders are:
1. Failure to build a relationship or team culture (40%)
2. Mismatch for the culture (32%)
3. Failure to deliver acceptable results (25%)
4. Unable to win support (25%)
5. Lack of appropriate training (23%)
6. Egotistical (15%)
7. Lack of vision (14%)
Sue Roffey-Jones, practice leader at Right Management, said: “Leadership development today is more science than art. In today’s business environment leadership development needs to be grounded in real work and focused on the critical competencies required for success in C-level roles.”
The research revealed that leaders evolve from a wide variety of backgrounds, experience and job functions. Western corporate CEOs are most likely to come from Operations and Finance. When asked what functional areas are most likely to produce a company’s C-level executives, operations were the most likely to be indicated (68%) and Finance was second ranked (56%) with Sales third (49%).
The more specialised functions were less likely to provide the career path to the top. Marketing was less likely (34%), HR (24%), Engineering (22%), IT (13%) and Research and Development only (8%).
But given what research has revealed to be the critical competencies for a CEO, how would a company develop leaders who have demonstrated a track record of ‘Creating a strategic vision’ and ‘Inspiring others and maintaining leadership responsibility’ when these roles are more likely to be the fairly exclusive domain of the CEO.
Data was collected through a quantitative survey of 1,439 CEOs and human resource professionals from 707 organisations. The organisations ranged in size from 500 employees to over 100,000 employees with revenues from less than 25 million US dollars to over 10 billion US dollars. Industries represented varied between public, private and government sectors. Eighty-one percent of the CEOs and 75% of the human resource professionals who participated in the study were from North America.

Article by Dave Woods published in HR Magazine