New HR Strategy Makes Lloyd’s a Best Company
Bohlander discussed in chapter one. One of the biggest things I took from the chapter was evolution of HR managers from being a person consumed by company personnel matters to playing an active role in improving the business model a company has through innovation and providing advice to company executives. Ms. Black spoke of the need of Lloyd’s employees to be challenged in their work.
In Human Behavior in Organizations, Sinclair, Cuttell, Vandeveer and Menefee write about how it is essential to provide employees with work that challenges them, because challenging work is viewed as being rewarding work, this in turn provides for an increase in employee motivation and makes them feel as though they are true stakeholders in the organization (pgs 50-51). Additionally, the workers cited community involvement and health incentives as reasons for their continued motivation.
Clearly, these workers prove Snell and Bohlander to be correct when those authors wrote about the need for companies to be seen as being socially responsible and offer innovative incentives to keep their employees not only motivated, but wanting to work for a company (pgs 10,11,20,28). This ability to think outside the normal work paradigm of salary raises and promotions with regards to employee benefits backs up Blacks claim that HR managers will need to be able to see change and work within in that change.
This is vital with the changing American demographics(Census Bureau) and the values that younger workers and different cultures have when it comes to work motivation and success. The idea of attracting these new workers highlights the concept of strategic thinking that Black spoke of to be successful in the new HR. From reading the case study, it appears as though Blacks strategy has been a success. It has been a success not only for Lloyds, but it appears as though it also successful for the employees.
Often when one thinks about improving the company the image of layoffs, furloughs and other morale crushing decisions come to mind. It seems that these changes have positively changed worker attitudes, with Lloyds being ranked as one of the most desirable companies to work for. Even the website Payscale shows employees at Lloyds giving the company four out of five stars for workplace environment (Payscale). This recognition as a great place to work from respected media outlets like the Sunday Times can only help to recruit and retain the best talent for Lloyds.
The ability for the employees to develop their career, and know that they can be rewarded for their work, has to provide incentive for those workers to make Lloyds a more successful company filled with happy, productive workers. Companies are finding that many advantages can be gained by going global. As with anything however, there are also pitfalls to entering into global markets to sell, or make items. If I were the HR manager for a company that is creating offices around the globe, I would lobby for each country to have separate culture specific HR policies.
What works for American companies will not even work in many parts of France. Snell and Bohlander spoke of the French workers taking their managers hostage(pg 19). While such an action would be cause for termination without much protest in America, the French have a different attitude towards work relations. If another western nation has such a different outlook towards work issues, imagine the pitfalls inherit with going to Asia, Africa, or Latin America with totally different norms and societal expectations.
Not only would it be a necessity to learn and become adroit in that cultures values and ways of work, you would need to ensure to meet compliance for all laws in that nation, which could be very different than our laws. The need for precise translations would be paramount to ensure that all employees know precisely what the companies expectations are and how the employees are expected to act and what they are expected to do. The power of “no” is immense.
Employees, managers and executives alike need to be bound by the rules and regulations that run a company for that company to have success. Since I have not worked in an office environment, I am more limited in the potential conflicts that I could see arising where as an HR manager, I would have to be firm and follow the guidelines established by the company and their protocols. One instance I could see arising, that has happened in a school setting, is habitual employee tardiness.
Many companies, in order to retain talent and keep their employees happy and motivated, have adapted flex time. The schools systems can not do this, as we have a set bell schedule. If an employee consistently asked to come in late, or leave early, the time would come when you would have to say no to the employee. Hopefully, the prior incidents had been documented so that you could prove you tried to accommodate the employee to the extent possible.
If other workers notice what they see as another employee receiving preferential treatment, I imagine a cascading effect where the other workers would naturally insist upon being treated the same, or they may become resentful towards the company and the employee who seems to be treated differently. Any situation that violates company policy, or more importantly the law, must be told no. As an HR manager I am responsible for protecting the company, the executives and the employees. Recently at school we had an issue with coworker harassment and bullying.
While I do not know the specifics of that incident, I do know that if the administrators or anyone from the Board of Education had received information about the issue, they would have to explain to the parties that such things are not acceptable, damage the school community and open the possibility of civil litigation. Whenever a potential conflict exists that could violate company procedure, or the law, HR must be firm and stand by their convictions and ensure that all workers are treated equitably and fairly.