Is Your Workplace in Motion? Exploring the New Employee, the New Work, and the New Workplace
Brenda Barker Scott, Workplace in Motion Summit Chair, 2015
Do you encourage collaboration between departments?
Are you ready for a changing demographic in your workforce?
Do you know how technology will change your organization in the future?
This past spring, Queen's IRC hosted a summit to explore our workplaces in motion. We thought of our summit as a discovery space. We invited people to come together to reflect, share and re-imagine how their workplaces could become more transparent, integrated and inspiring. Through an old world – new world lens, we explored how four inter-related trends (see model) are shaping the new employee, the new work, and the new workplace.
Our lofty aim was to reveal how the workplace principles and frameworks that worked in the past no longer serve us. While we all appreciate that the era of centralized governing systems and rigid hierarchies is over, many of the legacy principles are so deeply engrained, we simply do not see or question them. Our task was to surface the principles that not longer serve us, and define a new set of workplace fundamentals promoting connectivity, innovation and adaptability.
In service of keeping those conversations going, we offer our old world-new world models as a starting place for you to ponder the future of your workplaces. As you reflect on each of the three models (the new employee, the new work, the new workplace), gather your colleagues together and answer the questions in the box below. We've employed a technique called reverse brainstorming to surface the organizational practices and systems that may, inadvertently, be rooting your organization in the past.
Improve Your Negotiation Outcome By Learning Something New: A Collective Bargaining Success Story
Jennifer Davis, Conciliation and Mediation Specialist, Government of New Brunswick, 2014
Most people are familiar with the old adage that defines true insanity as doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting a different result. Then why, in labour relations, do we continue using the same processes and methods that have not yielded positive results for us in the past? Well, some parties have learned this lesson and are trying new approaches in their search for win-win outcomes of negotiation.
As a labour relations mediator, I have had the pleasure of working with parties who have realized that they cannot continue doing the same thing over and over and expect different results. This is a mediator's account of how two parties to a collective agreement did something different. It is a story of how they learned new processes and skills to achieve outcomes that supported their collective priorities and interests. The improvements they saw were not just in the outcome of negotiations, but also in their ability to weather conflict and resolve disputes during the term of their collective agreement.
Recognizing Employee Engagement in the Workplace
Cavell Fraser, Vice President Human Resources, Libro Credit Union, 2014
There's a lot of talk about employee engagement these days, but how do we recognize these engaged employees and show appreciation for the things they do to support the company? It's not always easy to distinguish what exactly engagement in the workplace is, and it can be demonstrated differently depending on a person's role and the function of their company.
When I think of engagement, I consider it to be those behaviours and actions that warm the heart. I can picture specific employees I've worked with over the years and the behaviours I've witnessed that have touched me. And perhaps you've seen them too. These behaviours show that the employees care about the company, their coworkers, and the integrity of the company. They do this through their words and actions, both inside and outside the workplace.
See if you're familiar with the examples below of engaged employees.