Archive for January, 2017

How to support employees with continuing education

When you build a culture of learning within your company, you create a stronger staff that is more engaged, informed and committed. It shows employees that you value their involvement and support their growth, which translates into improved employee productivity and overall satisfaction.

continuing_educationMany employees may already be interested in advancing their professional career through continuing education. But when your C-suite is just as enthusiastic about the opportunity, it can enhance participation, development and performance.

In fact, employers benefit just as much as the employees themselves when professional development and continuing education opportunities are made a priority. Employee training can fill skills gaps and target specific work area and the tools learned in class can be used during day-to-day operations—a direct contribution to the company’s bottom line.

The Association for Talent Development found that companies who spend around $680 on each employee for education and training purposes will see a 6% return in annual investment. And employees who receive additional educational opportunities and a boost in empowerment are more likely to stay loyal to their employer.

Now that you recognize the value of continuing education, here are five simple steps to support your workforce:

  • 1. Ask employees about their education goals and help them determine an education action plan
  • 2. Allow flexible hours for employees to take courses as needed
  • 3. Periodically ask how the course or class is going
  • 4. Offer yourself as a resource or reference for projects, insight and feedback
  • 5. Celebrate students when they reach a milestone or graduate

Employees who participate in continuing education will actively rethink processes, bring new ideas to the table and stay up-to-date on the latest industry trends. Encourage it! It will have a big impact on how they move forward and stay motivated throughout the course.

Whether you simply offer tuition reimbursement, offer in-house continuing education opportunities or encourage external course enrollment, it’s essential to foster an environment of constant learning. Each employee deserves a chance to grow, so give them the opportunity.

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SNOW DAYS: How employers and employees should handle snow delays and closings

snow_dayPicture this: Your alarm goes off and you wake up to start your day. As the coffee pot brews, you open the blinds and instantly see white everywhere. You realize that while you were sleeping, Mother Nature decided to deliver a surprise snow day to your region. Your first impulse may be to jump back into bed but take a moment to do the most important thing you should do today- communicate!

Check your smartphone or email to see if there is any correspondence from your employer about delayed office openings and telework options. Depending on the severity of the snow, your employer can still require you to come into the office; however, U.S. News suggests using the “Know Your Manager” theory to determine how to handle your employer. If you have children or take public transportation be sure to communicate with your employer about your plans for coming into the office. The timing of your email is also important – you want your employer to see that you were awake on time and prepared to come into the office. If you do in fact come later because of the weather, you are still deemed a professional and intentional employee.

If you are an employer it is important to recognize that snow days are an opportunity for you to support employees, especially those who have children or commute more than an hour away. If HRinMotion, LLC has written your employee handbook, office closings and delays are already addressed but it is important to use your best judgement a communicate with your employees early enough to give them time to make arrangements depending on their situation.

Enjoy the flurries!

Ladies: Are You the Next Presidential Candidate?

More than three million people attended women’s marches around the world on Saturday January 22, 2017. Various causes were attached to the march, but at its core, the demonstration was in support of women’s rights and civil rights.

It’s a battle that women are still fighting. Although improvements have been made over the years, 43% of respondents to a Pew Research Center study said that women are held to higher standards.

The gender gap still exists. But the number of female leaders is certainly growing and 44% said that as more women move into management, it’s only a matter of time before women hold as many top positions as men.

woman_presidentIf you want to see change, you must take initiative, take risks and get out of your comfort zone. And if your organization doesn’t recognize the need to support, develop and invest in its female leaders, you should advocate for yourself.

  • Create a culture of empowerment and inclusion among your female counterparts to speak up and challenge current processes. Eventually, you’ll look at career opportunities as a way to embark on a new adventure and obtain new skills.
  • Talk to executives about implementing policies and options to encourage women to step up, such as flexible work schedules, mentoring programs, maternity benefits and access to networking groups.
  • Already in a leadership role? Mentor employees down the chain who show potential. With encouragement, support and inspiration, there’s a greater chance they’ll become emerging leaders.
  • Look into training and coaching experiences you can attend and offer your fellow co-workers, covering topics such as assertiveness, personal branding, leadership development and stress management.

When you put your best foot forward, you will see positive change within not only yourself, but within your organization. You are just as—if not more—capable than your male counterparts. It’s time to stop being held to a double standard and fight for that managerial position, corner office or boardroom seat.