Category Archives: Communication

Assessment: Diversity and Communications

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Often, discussions about diversity quickly become discussions about structural or systemic problems or patterns over time – and thus become a sociology debate, rather than a personal assessment. In reality, despite the complexities of diversity in the workplace, what most of us really control occurs at the level of the conversation.  We show respect for…
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Five Tips for Building a Diverse Workforce

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It is generally believed that diverse teams make better decisions, because they are more likely to bring in multiple perspectives – and therefore, better represent customers and clients.  In addition, when organizations work to improve diversity, it can also lead to broader applicant pools for new jobs – increasing the possibility that the right person…
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Reacting to Diversity Topics – Looking Inward

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Too often, diversity awareness becomes lists of differences. Black or White, Hispanic or Non-Hispanic, Asian or long lists of “Others.” Male, Female, Transgender. Gay, Straight, Lesbian, Bi-Sexual, Queer. Democrat, Republican, Independent. Christian, Jewish, Catholic, Buddhist, Muslim. Disabled, Differently Abled. Over time, more terms and categories emerge – and each individual brings combinations of diversity that…
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The Business Ethics of Black Lives Matter

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As we write this, protests are spreading across the United States, with demands that leaders confront systemic racism and discrimination. What started as a focus on policing is shifting to a broader dialogue about what both individuals and businesses are doing to foster fairness and equality. Eliminating systemic racism, and more broadly supporting diversity and…
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Business Ethics in a COVID World

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Many workplaces are beginning the return to office spaces and normal operational status as the numbers of COVID-19 cases flatten across the country. There remain risks of a resurgence of the virus, so the return to work will raise ethical questions and choices for many managers as they establish new patterns and approaches. Here are…
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Coronavirus in the Workplace: Key HR Issues

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The spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has gone from a handwashing and elbow-bumping conversation to the most significant workplace issue we have ever seen. Employers are confronting dilemmas that change every day. Questions regarding how to handle emergency leave, workplace safety and health, furloughs, layoffs and mandated closing of businesses along-side all the other employment…
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Microlearning Course Design

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When considering how to integrate new approaches—like microlearning—into your overall employee development efforts, it can be useful to get back to basics. In this article, we place microlearning within a broader training development structure. Let’s start at the broadest levels of training development: learning paths, curricula and courses. These learning categories define the overall topics…
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Employee Engagement: A Case Study

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In this article, we share a case study about an organization that dramatically improved its employee engagement scores related to performance management.  The organization received feedback that high performance was not sufficiently differentiated and acknowledged in the organization, and rewards were not well aligned with performance. First, the management team analyzed the problem. While annual…
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Workplace Harassment: Assessing the Burden of Proof

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Allegations of harassment can raise strong feelings of anger, guilt, defensiveness and vulnerability. Amidst this emotion, the people handling the incident must consider what the burden of proof will be when assessing what to do when someone is accused of harassing someone else. That burden can vary, depending on a number of factors. Relationship: Are…
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Beyond the Buzzwords: Recognizing Workplace Harassment

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Workplace harassment is prohibited under several Federal Acts (or laws) — these laws prohibit discrimination based on sex, age, disability, religion, disability and many other factors. Beyond the buzzwords of legal documents, however, the threshold of harassment can be sometimes hard to establish. Here are some examples: Emily is known for being demanding and direct…
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