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  • Contact Energy

    Across the energy sector, there’s been a cultural shift over the last decade. At Contact Energy, that meant an overhaul of processes and leadership around health and safety. The result? A huge change in organisational culture.  

    The energy sector has always prioritised health and safety - but the shift Contact has pioneered has been about applying more of a cultural lens to health and safety rather than overcomplicating things with lengthy written guidance and too much training. We spoke to Contact Energy’s Chief People Officer, Tania Palmer, to hear about how much a small change in process had a big effect.  

    Tania says the culture at Contact Energy wasn’t always so positive.  

    We used to have a blame culture. If something went wrong, we focused on who to blame. It was about punishing a mistake rather than preventing it.

    The effect of this was that employees feared making a mistake which led to a bigger problem - people not being open when things went wrong, which meant there wasn’t much learning and improving taking place. At Contact Energy, an initial survey uncovered these attitudes towards health and safety that were affecting overall culture in a hostile way.  

    Once we changed the way we thought about health and safety, and moved towards a more supportive, open and understanding approach, we noticed a definite change.

    Instead of blaming someone for making an error, there was more emphasis on learning what went well, what was unexpected and how we could strengthen and improve the conditions in which our people did their work.

    More recently Contact has used AskYourTeam to collect feedback on how employees are feeling about health and safety processes and overall culture. Contact Energy has found their people have seen a substantial improvement - people feel more empowered to make their own decisions, and assess risk - without the fear of blame or judgement if things go wrong. With employees feeling more supported in their decisions by the organisation, the culture has become more positive overall.  

    The AskYourTeam system is able to gauge whether employees felt the shift in culture, and if their feelings of empowerment are growing, declining or being sustained. By creating a health and safety index through AskYourTeam, Contact was able to pinpoint specific areas that had seen the most improvement, and what areas still needed work.  

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  • Pulled apart – how HR actually deals with sexual harassment

    In a time when attitudes towards workplace sexual harassment are shifting dramatically, we’ve heard from victims and learned about perpetrators. Here are the complicated experiences of HR professionals who have stood between them.

    Workplace culture starts with involvement

    Productivity grows out of involvement. If you want to build a more productive workplace culture, involve your people more meaningfully in your business. 

    How do we get balance in all respects?

    How to get more women into senior roles? How to better celebrate the achievements of women? How to balance the demands of family and career? Jen McKay discusses how do we get a better balance in all respects.

    Gender Balance in Business

    Gender balance – how long will it be in New Zealand until we can honestly say ‘we’ve got this’? It’s a timely question as global celebrations for International Women’s Day happen this Friday. This year’s theme is #BalanceforBetter. What a great call to action!

    Collaborative Teams

    Collaborative teams are units that bring together individuals with unique, disparate skill sets for a defined goal. Jude Manuel discusses how best to facilitate collaboration in an agile world.

    How #MeToo has changed HR forever

    The impact of the #MeToo movement has been far-reaching. What started as a campaign to build a conversation around sexual violence has gone on to permeate many aspects of our culture.

    Beating the bullies

    New Zealand has a shameful history of workplace bullying but there’s a growing movement among workplace culture experts to stamp it out. AskYourTeam CEO Chris O’Reilly investigates. 

    Beyond engagement

    Today’s businesses are moving on from engagement, focusing instead on their employees’ experience of work and tapping into what they think, says Jude Manuel.

    Checking the pulse

    A new breed of digital HR tools in creating a people-led business revolution and providing a content read on the HR health of an organisation.

    What is this thing called workplace empowerment?

    When a person is genuinely empowered in their job and involved in their organisation, they will become highly engaged, productive, loyal and keen to share their ideas and talk about what they do with colleagues by default. 

    Attraction and retention of millennials through learning and CSR

    Business success depends on having an effective career development strategy in place, but what role does workplace learning,and CSR play in the attraction and retention of millennial?

    Creating a culture that inspires employee loyalty

    Helping senior leaders to understand that they are an integral part in inspiring employee loyalty enables them to acknowledge the value of other people’s ideas and input.

    From talent to team: HR’s generational change

    Talent is no longer regarded as a raw material in the economic equation to be retained for the productive working life of a human, but something to tap into according to the changing needs of the organisation at any moment.

    Are you implementing a culture of empowerment in your organisation?

    Genuine cultures of empowerment can only come about when leaders realise that empowerment isn't an act of benevolence toward those lower down the pecking order than them.

    How to make Continuous Performance Management work?

    Performance appraisals are widely unpopular with both staff and managers. People are now querying whether annual performance reviews and ratings are best serving the needs of organisations and individuals.

    A time to reflect, redefine and upskill

    In an age of disruption and transformation, career transitions are the norm. Equipping people with the skills to move on will differentiate an organisation in the eyes of those who remain.

    The dictator is dead. Killed by technology.

    The industrial age command and control leadership is dead. It was killed by digital technology that allows people throughout an organisation to have their say in how it should be run.

    Anonymity key to overcoming unconscious bias

    Unconscious bias is the great unsolved problem of modern HR and one of the intractable barriers to building a truly diverse organisation. Almost all people hold subtle biases based on gender, ethnic and other differences and we are surprisingly powerless to do much about it.

    Digital tools create a people-led business revolution

    In the past decade, the operations side of business has been revolutionised by digital connectivity. Now the smart businesses in every industry are looking for the next advantage by redesigning their organisations using a new class of digital tools and analytics driven data. 

    Wisdom from Women -New Zealand women leaders on leadership

    What makes a great leader? Watch four inspirational New Zealand female leaders sharing their views and thoughts on the topic this International Women’s Day.

    Building workplace cultures where unsafe behaviour is not tolerated

    The consequences of allowing bullying to survive in a workplace culture can be profound. From mental health issues to lost productivity and talent retention problems, bullying has the potential to undermine an organisation and cause serious harm to its members

    Why the future belongs to HR

    There has been a seismic shift from management by engagement to leadership by involvement that is changing the way we think about everything from the war for talent to how we build organisational culture. 

    Strengths and Weaknesses of New Zealand Leaders

    Powerful new benchmarking insights have been made available for the first time from leadership survey AskYourTeam into the strengths and weaknesses of Kiwi leadership. 

    5 Tips for Transitioning from an Engagement Survey to AskYourTeam

    After years of using a traditional engagement survey, Smith&Smith made the transition to AskYourTeam.  Pati Bloor, Smith&Smith's People and Leadership Director, shares her top five tips for a successful transition. 

    AskYourTeam: A System Your Leaders Will Love

    Throughout my years as an organisational development specialist, I've noticed leaders are sometimes less-than-enthusiastic about 'HR' initiatives such as engagement surveys. I think that's understandable.

    Engagement: Does it Matter Any More?

    In the early days of ‘staff surveys’ we measured staff satisfaction. We then deepened our questioning to understand what made our employees feel committed to go that extra mile or ‘stay, say and strive’. It worked well for some organisations, but many have plateaued.

    Are You Measuring What Matters?

    As leaders, it’s easy to measure what we're comfortable with, instead of what will actually have the greatest impact on the success of our business. But without a systematic approach to measuring what really matters, your business is unlikely to reach its true potential.

    You Don't Have All the Answers (and that's OK)

    Leadership is no longer about the visionary guru leading the charge. That idea belongs to a time when businesses operated in a slower world. Command-and-control leadership was the norm. Times have changed.

    Why Smart Businesses are Focussing on Performance Before Engagement

    The traditional way of thinking about engagement is linear - employee engagement leads to improved business performance. But recent research is pointing to a much more circular model. 

  • Diversity & Inclusion: Anonymity key to overcoming unconscious bias

    Diversity and inclusion are priorities for every HR pro today, but too often we shy away from conversations about the biggest barrier to creating more inclusive organisations - unconscious bias.

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    Deloitte: Global Human Capital Trends 2017 Report

    Deloitte’s 2017 Human Capital Trends survey of leaders from around the world identifies the critical trends shaping the HR agenda.

    Download Report

    Becoming Irresistible: A New Model for Employee Engagement 

    Josh Bersin, Principal with Deloitte Consulting, on why the traditional employee engagement survey - devoid of modern, actionable solutions - has passed its used-by date. 

    Download Paper

    AskYourTeam for Business

    We analysed the world’s top leadership models to understand what the most successful businesses have in common. Then we built an independently-verified system to help you get to the heart of how your business is doing in each of these make-or-break areas. Find out how AskYourTeam generates breakthroughs in business performance.

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    AskYourTeam for the Public Sector

    We’ve created a system especially for public sector organisations that assesses performance against the Performance Improvement Framework (PIF) and Leadership Success Profile (LSP) models. Find out how you can take your organisation from good to great with AskYourTeam for the Public Sector. 

    Download eBook

    AskYourTeam for Membership Organisations 

    No matter the industry or the size, all membership organisations face similar challenges around growth, retention, and nurturing active involvement from their members. Find out how you can create a voice for your members with AskYourTeam for Membership Organisations. 

     

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    AskYourTeam for Local Government

    In consultation with EquiP, we've developed a system especially for New Zealand’s Local Government sector. AskYourTeam for Local Government optimises the underpinning processes of the Local Government Excellence Programme. Download the ebook to find out how AskYourTeam can transform your council.

    Download eBook