The November Newsletter

Welcome to our November newsletter. This month I’m taking it back to basics. I’m discussing the role of HR in your business, why buying a pack of generic policies probably isn’t adding much value to your business & how quality HR sits at the core of your business success.

I’m also looking at the challenges of attracting a residential workforce & how we can do a better job of selling Kalgoorlie-Boulder.

Click to read.

Like what you see? Click around and discover how partnering with us can give your business a competitive advantage by aligning strategy with people & culture, or, give us a like on Facebook for regular updates on industry trends, blog posts & photo’s of me having coffee at my regular haunts and / or my dog & cat disrupting my work day

It’s time for HR to move beyond policies, practices and processes, HR’s value proposition to business is to ensure HR professionals and their practices’ produce positive outcomes for key stakeholders, employees, line managers, customers and investors.

THE PEOPLE & CULTURE OFFICE CAN PARTNER WITH YOU TO GAIN A COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE THROUGH PEOPLE & CULTURE INITIATIVES CONTACT US TO ARRANGE AN APPOINTMENT TO DISCUSS WHAT SOLUTIONS WE CAN PUT IN PLACE TO DRIVE ACHIEVEMENT OF YOUR STRATEGIC GOALS.

Lets break it down

An employee planning their week in a diary

The People & Culture Office – A different kind of HR Consultant

Lᴇᴛs ʙʀᴇᴀᴋ ɪᴛ ᴅᴏᴡɴ 

Who am I & what do I do?

I want to start with my mission statement – “To build capacity of small – medium enterprises through people & culture initiatives. We aim to be the leading provider of human resource solutions in the local Kalgoorlie-Boulder area, and the wider Australian business community, helping to create more successful, productive and high performance organisations.”

So in other words, I want to build your knowledge, and improve your tools and the resources you have at hand, to help you achieve business success through quality employees and employment practices. And I will do this by embedding HR solutions into your business framework 

Buying a set of cookie cutter policies from a HR provider that has whacked your logo on there to make it feel individualised is not a HR solution – that’s an insurance policy to lull you into a sense of security should Fair Work come knocking.

Having a set of policies in a folder means diddly if you don’t understand the content, don’t follow them or aren’t being provided the support from an experienced HR professional to use them effectively in your business – someone who’s willing to share their knowledge to help you develop your skills in managing employee relations issues.

Additionally, a solution by its very definition is a means of solving a problem or dealing with a difficult situation. Are your set of generic policies really a solution?

Having trouble attracting employees? Would having a Recruitment Policy in place solve that? No, because a policy doesn’t tell you how your going to get there, just what you’re going to do once you’ve arrived.

A recruitment strategy, on the other hand, will assist with attracting employees because it’s designed as a plan of action. A recruitment strategy can identify how & where you can source candidates and what initiatives you can put in place to build your employer profile to make you more attractive to employees.

This is a HR Solution, and this is the true value of HR in your business.

And this is why when you become my client I don’t lock you into a contract, because the value I can offer over my competitors speaks for itself, and that’s why I’m a different kind of HR Consultant 

Like what you see? Click around and discover how partnering with us can give your business a competitive advantage by aligning strategy with people & culture, or, give us a like on Facebook for regular updates on industry trends, blog posts & photo’s of me having coffee at my regular haunts and / or my dog & cat disrupting my work day

It’s time for HR to move beyond policies, practices and processes, HR’s value proposition to business is to ensure HR professionals and their practices’ produce positive outcomes for key stakeholders, employees, line managers, customers and investors.

THE PEOPLE & CULTURE OFFICE CAN PARTNER WITH YOU TO GAIN A COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE THROUGH PEOPLE & CULTURE INITIATIVES CONTACT US TO ARRANGE AN APPOINTMENT TO DISCUSS WHAT SOLUTIONS WE CAN PUT IN PLACE TO DRIVE ACHIEVEMENT OF YOUR STRATEGIC GOALS.

Lets get back to basics

What is HR and what does it have to do with your business?

Let’s start with your strategic plan, these are the outcomes you want to achieve over the next 1 – 3 years. It’s your plan of where you want to take your business 

If you have employees then every aspect of your strategic plan involves them

One of your strategies might be to drive innovation and seek out improvements to every aspect of your business 

To do this you need skilled employees with the experience and capability to identify areas for improvement 

What skills & attributes have you identified that your employees will need for you to achieve this? How do you find them? Do you already have them? 

This is where a skilled HR professional can assist 

The strategic plan is underpinned by your core values 

Your core values are the behaviours that guide your decision making, your service, how you engage with clients and the community; they tell your stakeholders who you are and what you believe in

So it makes sense to employ people who share these values with you right?

How do you structure your interview process to ensure the answers to your questions identify the behaviours – negative or positive- as reactions to common scenarios in the workplace?

A HR professional experienced in behavioural or values based recruitment can develop processes to identify the quality employees from the, well, not so quality employees 

But what about your existing employees, how can they help you achieve your strategic goals? How do you guide their behaviours and identify development areas so that everyone is working at an ideal level?

HR can develop policies and processes such as performance management systems to ensure that everyone knows what is expected of them, what they are working towards and what their standard of work, attitude and behaviour needs to be

So this is a basic snapshot but you can see how quality HR processes are a necessity to elevate your business to where you want it to be, to achieve your goals, to have quality employees who stick around and have the buy in to want to see the business do well

HR isn’t a thing we do, it’s the thing that runs our business 

Like what you see? Click around and discover how partnering with us can give your business a competitive advantage by aligning strategy with people & culture, or, give us a like on Facebook for regular updates on industry trends, blog posts & photo’s of me having coffee at my regular haunts and / or my dog & cat disrupting my work day

It’s time for HR to move beyond policies, practices and processes, HR’s value proposition to business is to ensure HR professionals and their practices’ produce positive outcomes for key stakeholders, employees, line managers, customers and investors.

Simone Pickering | The People & Culture Office

 The People & Culture Office can partner with you to gain a competitive advantage through people & culture initiatives Contact Us to arrange an appointment to discuss what solutions we can put in place to drive achievement of your strategic goals.

Attracting regional employees is a hard sell

If you follow me on social media you would have seen these posts popping up over the past week

When I look at Seek advertising, local business websites and speak to jobseekers & business leaders based outside of Kalgoorlie-Boulder one thing becomes glaringly clear.

We just don’t do a very good job of selling ourselves

One thing I think we can all agree on is it is a lot more sustainable for our businesses & community if people who work here; live here, and, we need to bring residents back to the town. We need to grow the population to ensure essential services, a healthy retail environment and the type robust economic & community environment that encourages continued population growth.

Where to start?

If you don’t already have a recruitment strategy in place seriously consider it. It forces you to look at your current practices and external forces which may prevent you from attracting quality employees.

Know who your demographic is & tailor your advertising to suit. Millennials are those born 1981 – 1996, so at the top end someone aged 38 and at the low end someone aged 23. This generation makes up 50% of the workforce and are our emerging leaders.

We know that millennials consume digital content the most; they stream music over listening to the radio and stream TV over sitting down and watching live free to air tv.

Print, radio & tv advertising is largely wasted money when trying to grab this generations attention.

If you have digital content thats hard to consume ie: overly formal, unnecessary text or information, poor image quality, no emotional connection, then they will scroll straight past. Opportunity lost.

When writing your seek or social media employment advertising view it from the view point of the person reading it. Am I telling them What, am I telling them Who, am I telling them Why?

Have you considered embedding some video footage into the base of the ad?

This one is FREE from the KBCCI on You Tube

Or if you frequently recruit & are going through a period of growth why not create your own content?

Want to read more? I wrote this post 12 months ago about selling Kalgoorlie when you recruit.

When it comes to selling Kalgoorlie as a great place to live we all play a part. But if theres one message I want to reinforce, it’s that no-one is expecting you to do this all on your own. Don’t be shy about outsourcing components of your business if they are areas that aren’t your strength, I mean you outsource your finances & taxation to an Accountant don’t you? Why not outsource your HR too?

Like what you see? Click around and discover how partnering with us can give your business a competitive advantage by aligning strategy with people & culture, or, give us a like on Facebook for regular updates on industry trends, blog posts & photo’s of me having coffee at my regular haunts and / or my dog & cat disrupting my work day

Simone Pickering | The People & Culture Office

IT’S TIME FOR HR TO MOVE BEYOND POLICIES, PRACTICES AND PROCESSES. THE PEOPLE & CULTURE OFFICE CAN PARTNER WITH YOU TO GAIN A COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE THROUGH PEOPLE & CULTURE INITIATIVES CONTACT US TO ARRANGE AN APPOINTMENT TO DISCUSS WHAT SOLUTIONS WE CAN PUT IN PLACE TO DRIVE ACHIEVEMENT OF YOUR STRATEGIC GOALS.

What’s the tea

Settle down and get comfy because I’m about to spill some tea.

Tea Spill GIF - Tea Spill The GIFs

Last month I was visiting a friend and we were all chatting, her husband, who works for one of the bigger employers in town, was telling me how the organisation had sent out an employee feedback survey.

The workplace has quite a low morale, pays are low compared to the rest of the industry and there are quite a number of FIFO workers. The sentiment amongst the residential workforce in general is that the big bosses are more concerned with putting profit over our community.

So the crews are assembled in the meeting room and management start discussing the terrible feedback from the employee survey and they ask if anyone would like to make a comment on the issues (let’s not lose sight of the fact that these types of surveys’ sole purpose IS for employees to make a comment – this is information they already have).

Silence………. nobody speaks a word. Then finally a voice pipes up “People are too scared to say what the issues are” discussion ensues and a couple of people, respectfully, share their input.

The meeting ends and those who spoke up are pulled aside and given a bollocking for what they said.

😳🤔 Do you think they get the irony of their actions?

Anonymous employee surveys are an excellent way to gain insight into the workplace culture, employee morale and what you are doing both right & wrong – as long as the organisation, and by that I mean management, is mature enough to accept the good with the bad and take action to make meaningful changes for the better.

All too often you see companies invest heavily in “yay team” training sessions or social activities in an effort to improve culture while failing to address the real issues.

Organisational culture is accepted behaviour, not expected behaviour

Culture flows from the top down

A strong & positive culture comes from strong & positive leadership. Words don’t change a culture. Displaying company values around the premises & in communications, or imprinting mugs, mouse pads, note pads, or key chains with the (company’s) values might be nice reinforcement, but these things do not define or change a culture.

Culture change comes from concrete and noticeable changes in leadership behaviour: what they do; who they hire; who they ask to move on; who they listen to and emulate; where they spend their time; what they talk about in meetings; what they measure; how & where they invest their $$.

When you listen to employees talk which pronoun do they elect to use when talking about the company? “We” or “They”? “They” suggests disengagement and at its worst, alienation.  While “we” suggests that employees feel as though they are part of something meaningful and significant.  They are engaged, productive & proud employees.

Do people want to work for your company and what do they write about you online? High turnover & finding it hard to attract quality talent (or keeping them) is a sure fire sign there is something wrong within your organisation, or within a particular department.

Going back to my story at the beginning of the post, I did a Google search to see what employees had to say about their experiences working there, here are snippets from the 5 most recent reviews;

“Your Employees Matter Too, Not Just Shareholders”

“Over worked, under paid and no real sense of being appreciated”

“Only management and share holders matter workers are nothing”

“The people working there are essentially good shame about the management”

“Upper management being very detached from daily struggles in the working environment and low pay rates”

Ouch! Now think about my reference to the FIFO workforce, the Kalgoorlie mining community is small and bad news spreads fast, the FIFO community draws from a much bigger pool. The number of FIFO onsite kinda makes sense doesn’t it?

Want to learn more about workplace culture? You can find more blogs here, here & here.

Like what you see? Click around and discover how partnering with us can give your business a competitive advantage by aligning strategy with people & culture, or, give us a like on Facebook for regular updates on industry trends, blog posts & photo’s of me having coffee at my regular haunts and / or my dog & cat disrupting my work day

Simone Pickering | The People & Culture Office

IT’S TIME FOR HR TO MOVE BEYOND POLICIES, PRACTICES AND PROCESSES. THE PEOPLE & CULTURE OFFICE CAN PARTNER WITH YOU TO GAIN A COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE THROUGH PEOPLE & CULTURE INITIATIVES CONTACT US TO ARRANGE AN APPOINTMENT TO DISCUSS WHAT SOLUTIONS WE CAN PUT IN PLACE TO DRIVE ACHIEVEMENT OF YOUR STRATEGIC GOALS.

Are you social?

Are you social? What has worked in the past might not be cutting the mustard anymore and it’s time to change things up. It’s time to get social media working for you so potential employees can find you & see what you’re about. Get a social media plan in place. Contact me for recommendations. 

Like what you see? Click around and discover how partnering with us can give your business a competitive advantage by aligning strategy with people & culture, or, give us a like on Facebook for regular updates on industry trends, blog posts & photo’s of me having coffee at my regular haunts and / or my dog & cat disrupting my work day

BASED IN KALGOORLIE, THE PEOPLE & CULTURE OFFICE IS AN INDEPENDENT HR CONSULTANT WHO CAN PARTNER WITH YOU TO OFFER A ONE STOP HR SOLUTION, WE ONLY CHARGE YOU FOR THE WORK WE PERFORM; NO CONTRACTS, NO ANNUAL OR MONTHLY FEES, JUST QUALITY SERVICE. CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE



Roll on 2019

The People & Culture Office 2019

Who’s in holiday mode already? 🙋🏻‍♀️ We don’t tend to make a fuss over Christmas in terms of gifts and over consumption (except for when it comes to my Mum’s cheesecake) but I always look forward to actually having a legitimate excuse for nanna naps, eating leftover BBQ for 3 days & moving from the lounge to the pool & back again.

Anyway I’m sending a big peace out to 2018 ✌🏻 and I hope to see you all in 2019, remember one of the best ways to start the new year off is to consolidate your strategic goals, review your values and whether they are reflecting in your workplace culture, and most importantly, engage The People & Culture Office as your strategic partner to assist with HR solutions to implement cultural change and strengthen your workplace relations framework.

Work is hectic – getting help doesn’t have to be

I can still be contacted via email for appointments in the new year & urgent matters.

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BASED IN KALGOORLIE, THE PEOPLE & CULTURE OFFICE IS AN INDEPENDENT HR CONSULTANT WHO CAN PARTNER WITH YOU TO OFFER A ONE STOP HR SOLUTION, WE ONLY CHARGE YOU FOR THE WORK WE PERFORM; NO CONTRACTS, NO ANNUAL OR MONTHLY FEES, JUST QUALITY SERVICE. CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE

The rise & rise of the office mean girl

Office Mean Girl | The People & Culture Office

To quote a line from an absolute movie masterpiece, “Hands up if you’ve ever been personally victimised by Regina George”. I’m sure we’ve all been personally victimised by our fair share of office mean girls in our time, in the past few years on social media I’ve noticed a significant increase in people talking about being bullied at work and if you type “office mean girl” into Google you get 946,000,000 results. In fact workplace bullying has got so out of hand in Australia that in 2013 Fair Work amended the Fair Work Act to be able to intervene in instances of bullying in Australian workplaces, the reality is though, many victims choose to leave the workplace which quite often ensures no action is taken against the bully or the workplace and so the cycle continues.

So let’s have a look at the classic signs of an office mean girl.

She struggles with envy

Bullies bully because they covet what you have & they need to destroy that aspect of you to make themselves feel better. Whether it’s your job, your salary, your abilities, your clothes, your car or all of the above the little green monster makes for a bitter little person. They are willing to go to any extreme to hurt the person that has what they want. For instance, an office mean girl might boycott another employee’s ideas, projects or social gatherings. She will even take steps to destroy her target’s reputation and work-related projects. And she is unable to acknowledge anything good about other people due to her struggle with envy.

She excludes others

Ostracising other women at work is a sure sign of an office mean girl. These women use relational aggression to socially isolate someone while attempting to increase their own status at work. Typically, they are driven by a number of factors including everything from jealousy and a need for attention, to a fear of competition. As a result, they will leave other women out of lunch dates, meetings and after-work gatherings. They may even discuss the details in front of those who are being isolated to demonstrate their power.

She lies, gossips & spreads rumours

Office mean girls are often obsessed with what other people think of them. They consider how everything looks to others. As a result, these bullies target others that threaten their status in some way. For instance, if they believe another woman is threatening their status or position at the office, they have no qualms about attacking her relationally in order to eliminate the perceived threat. These actions can include making up lies and spreading rumors about her work ethic, her office relationships and even her personal life.

She’s a serial bully

These bullies are toxic women who are systematic, controlled and calculated in their approach. On the outside, this office mean girl appears charming and charismatic, but on the inside they are cold and calculating. As a result, they tend to inflict emotional pain on their victims over long periods of time. They also are skilled manipulators. They appear sweet, outgoing and likeable, but this is just another way to manipulate situations to their liking. Girls like these twist facts and situations to make themselves look innocent or to avoid being reprimanded – the counter claim of bullying is a classic example of this type of behaviour.

She struggles with anger management issues

Sometimes office mean girls have poor impulse control. They are quick-tempered, tend to yell a lot and may even use profanity. These women also are prone to using direct insults and direct name-calling. They also may dominate meetings by arguing, criticising, using sarcasm and spewing insults. And they are not above rolling their eyes and coughing to undermine what other people are saying.

She is power hungry

These women want to be the ones in control and calling the shots. But instead of earning that right through respect and teamwork, they often speak disrespectfully to others, insist on having things their way and put other people and their opinions down. What’s more, they use the power and control they already have to their advantage. Sometimes, these women are bosses who are bullies. Other times, they have strong personalities, excellent verbal skills or a lot of influence and they use these things to walk over the needs of other people.

The implications for management as a result of not adequately addressing these issues are far reaching, first and foremost it’s a breach of Workers Compensation legislation, if the victim has voluntarily left after repeated attempts to have management address the bullying they may choose to lodge an unfair dismissal claim on the grounds on constructive dismissal, there is the damage to reputation as a result of constant turnover and the inability to retain quality employees.

People bully because they can get away with it, when you’re a manager or a bystander you have an obligation to speak up and call perpetrators out on their behaviour, businesses can ensure they have clear, concise policies in place to assist with proceeding with disciplinary action. Each of us can control our own behaviour and take ownership of our choices and allegiances. Even if we’re not managers, we can all do small things to support colleagues at work. So the next time you’re in a situation where you see another colleague talked over, not given their due credit, or critiqued unfairly, don’t just sit out on the sidelines. Your voice matters, so don’t underestimate your own power to make the office a better place.

Based in Kalgoorlie, The People & Culture Office is an independent HR Consultant who can partner with you to offer a one stop HR solution, we only charge you for the work we perform; no contracts, no annual or monthly fees, just quality service. Click here to learn more