Small business and fast growing entrepreneurial organisations who are looking to service more clients and bigger projects faster and more efficiently have always been creative in how to manage this growth in their organisations.
One of the key strategies many small business use to facilitate growth in a low risk, cost effective way, is engaging contractors rather than employees to help meet their growing client demands. And there are lots of great arguments for why businesses should utilise this option.
However, with the prevalence of contract labour available, and the fact that this now seems to have become ‘common practice’ amongst small businesses, the line between what constitutes and employee and a contractor has become blurred in the eyes of many business owners. And those who don’t understand this are finding themselves caught in costly and potentially business destroying legal battles, purely because the right structure has not been put in...
Today is the end of the financial year, and for many businesses the plans, goals, strategies and projects they put in place at the beginning of the year may be just gradually moving along, or in some cases (thanks COVID) things may have been upended more than once.
At the beginning of the year we are typically all bright eyed and bushy tailed. We are refreshed from our traditional Christmas close down and break, we are motivated by our vision for the year ahead and excited to share it with our team.
For many of you that may have looked like a team planning and strategy day, where you got the whole team together, virtually or in person, to share the vision, get them excited and communicate clearly their role in making that happen.
That results in a great spike in engagement, as our teams all want to be part of something bigger, and when we can clearly articulate their roles in achieving that, and they can see what we’re working towards, they naturally get...
At the time of writing this particular article, the Fair Work Commission has handed down its decision following the Annual Minimum Wage Review process. The process involves the Commission reviewing submissions from various interested parties, including employer and employee representative groups, as well as analysing data relating to wages, such as changes to cost of living and alike.
Essentially, they are looking to ensure that the minimum wages set out in the Fair Work Act, including the National Minimum Wage, as well as al Award minimum rates of pay, is set at an appropriate level for our economic conditions.
What we typically see is that each year the National Minimum Wage, and all Award minimum rates of pay, will increase by a fixed percentage, and this increase has always taken place 1 July that year.
However, COVID-19 last year gave rise to ‘exceptional circumstances’ which allowed the Commission to make the determination, but alter how this...
In a recent report our of Swinburne University, entitled “The Peak Human Workplace Report”, it was revealed that 3 in 4 Australian workers surveyed were wanting to learn new skills in the workplace in the next 12 months, yet currently more than half of those surveyed participate in less than an hour of learning at work on any given week.
Based on this, amongst other researching finding similar statistics, it seems clear that the majority of workplaces across a broad cross section of our economy, are failing to deliver the level of training, skills acquisition and learning that our workforce is craving.
So why this thirst for knowledge, and why now? And perhaps more front centred for many business owners, when did the responsibility for learning shift from being individual and employee driven, to be the responsibility of the employer? The Swinburne University report helps us understand this a little better, as they found that three in five workers are...
No less than once a week I’ll get a call, or question online, that goes a little like “I have a problem with a staff member, they are getting their job done but they aren’t being a great team member, I can’t quite put my finger on it but every time I raise an issue with them they have an excuse, there is always some reason things haven’t gone to plan”. Does this sound familiar to you? Have you had someone like this on your team before?
Sure enough, after a few questions my typical conclusion is – you have someone who is below the line. What line? Great question!
I first became aware of this framework probably about 10-15 years ago, I’d heard about it conceptually but when I really noticed this as a powerful framework for teams when I worked with a business who really embraced the concept so much that their team used the language in their day to day operations – this is when I really started to pay attention to this...
We all know the feeling, we’re losing sleep, we’re avoiding the person at work, we’re angry, frustrated and tearing our hair out. We have an employee who is not performing, or not showing up how we want them to at work.
We can’t always quite put our finger on the exact issue, it’s just not quite right, but it’s wrong enough to be consuming our time and attention. Or maybe it is more obvious, but we feel like we’re going over the top if we bring it up – we don’t want them to feel like we are micromanaging them or pulling them up for something that feels petty and insignificant (yet the fact that it’s consuming our time and attention does in fact mean that at some level it is significant to us).
So we tolerate it, whether it’s behaviour, attendance, performance or something else, we tolerate it. We think maybe it’s not that much of a big deal, or maybe it’ll be short term, or surely they will...
Whether we love it or hate it, there is no doubt that for many of us the way our teams work has forever changed. For many of you it’s likely that your once 100% on site team is a mix of remote, on site and combination workers, and for others you have switched to a predominantly remote model.
In my opinion, what’s happened was always destined to happen, we have just fast tracked the process by 10 + years. Employees have been crying out for the opportunity to have more flexibility in where they work for too long. Work from home requests getting met with rejection after rejection, and the rules attached to them, were seeing increased frustration, and the companies who could embrace it were, in some industries, winning the talent war.
But the reality is most businesses weren’t offering it as an option, or even allowing it when there was seemingly no other alternative, so employees didn’t have the choice, they were stuck in roles, or not able to work...
“I can’t make a decision because you have presented 2 great candidates – if we hired one of them we’d always wonder whether the other would have been better....”
This was the exact words that came out of the employers’ mouth after we had carefully and meticulously conducted a thorough and rigorous recruitment campaign for them, providing a strong shortlist. So strong in fact that they simply couldn’t (and didn’t) make the final decision. Whilst the team rightly pointed out that we had done such a stellar job we made it difficult for the employer to choose, I found the situation fascinating.
How does it sound to you? Ludicrous? Funny? Typical?
At first I assumed that really they just didn’t want to hire anyone, that it was a total waste of time and resources because they clearly had no intention of hiring – I mean surely one candidate stands ahead of the other for their needs?
But as I...
I love exploring generational differences, both in the workplace and generally in society. Whilst of course there are some generalisations that get applied, and not every member of every generation has the same foundational experiences, but it’s hard to miss the fact that there are certain changes, events and experiences which form the behaviours, attitudes and beliefs of new generations.
Whilst we’ve all heard more opinions than most of us care to imagine about the Millennials (otherwise known as Gen Y), who have really mixed it up inside workplaces, we’ve been a little quieter and more reserved when it comes to Gen Z.
So to you Gen Z – welcome to the workplace, it’s fabulous to have you here, and I for one can’t wait to see the impact you are going to make on how we work, how we approach careers and how we can do things differently and better.
If you’re wondering who Gen Z is – they are the generation born...
Don’t you just love those weeks where you have a Public Holiday (especially on either the Monday or the Friday), but any day, and you only need to run your operations, lead your team and be present in your business for 4 days of the week? As a bonus, how much do your team love those weeks?
Interestingly, I’m going to ask you to reflect on something – how much less productivity happens in those weeks? Does 80% of the work get done, or is it much closer to 100% productivity squeezed into less time? I am willing to guess that the vast majority of you are going to say closer to 100%.
Isn’t that interesting … 80% of the time ‘at work’, 100% of the tasks and objectives achieved.
So, should you make all of your team part time, as they’re obviously dilly dallying for around 7-8 hours per week right? The short answer I am going to give you is no, I don’t think you should cut their hours along with their salary and...