A few easy steps for have positive results

first_imgA few easy steps for have positive resultsOn 15 Jan 2002 in Personnel Today Most HR managers constantly question what their colleagues are up to andPersonnel Today helps feed that hunger for knowledge. But it remains a disappointment that academic research into work-basedactivity finds such limited take-up. We live in the fourth biggest economy inthe world, but our funding of social science research is pathetic. How else canwe give changes in management behaviour a British context? We must listen tonew ideas that take us beyond mere fashion. In the recent Involvement and Participation bulletin, Professor John Purcellfrom the University of Bath Employment Research Centre summarised work done onhigh commitment management. His comments were based on an employee relationssurvey that shows management practices that intensify mutual satisfaction ofthe psychological contract – producing trust, fairness and honoured promises –are the most successful practices for increasing productivity. From a union perspective, the results were extremely interesting. If peopleare given skills, encouraged to use them and asked for their views as to whathappens next at work, they produce more. If they work in teams acrossdepartments on projects, they produce more. Perhaps the most interesting of Purcell’s observations, though, was thatthese consultative processes make managers less satisfied with performance thanwhere there are low levels of high-commitment management processes. Managers inlower achieving sites appear more satisfied with lower levels of performance.The conclusion is that high-performance plants are managed by people who knowthat much more can be achieved. One of the frustrations of key workers in industry is the same sense ofwasted effort. They know great companies with great products could be even moresuccessful. These days, the democratic workforce has much to say about thecontent of work and how to improve it, not simply focusing on what it can takeout of it. It was, therefore, distressing to realise that only 14 per cent of plantsuse high-commitment management techniques extensively, according to the survey.It is also distressing to have witnessed the instinctive reaction of manyemployers to the EU directive on consultation. This will allow a six-year delaybefore British workers get effective rights to know what is going on in theircompany. Many British firms do not need the EU to tell them how to communicate andconsult, but a significant number do. If we debated these issues in Britain asthe IPA bulletin does – making key research findings available to practitioners– we might get the busy, under-resourced HR departments of Britain tounderstand that decent practices are available to all and that they actuallywork. By John Lloyd, National officer, the Amalgamated Engineering andElectrical Union Related posts:No related photos. Comments are closed. Previous Article Next Articlelast_img

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