Managing People

Too many firms ignore their abusive boss problem

Not many employees expect that fearing their boss may be part of their work experience. Yet that expectation might have better prepared scores of Atlanta school principals to work under Beverly L. Hall, the superintendent who “ruled by fear: Principals were told that if state test scores did not go up enough, they would be fired — and 90 […]

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    If the HR department doesn’t encourage initiative, unit leaders can

If the HR department doesn’t encourage initiative, unit leaders can

Today’s business environment is characterized by global competition, fast-paced innovation, and unpredictable changes. In this context, companies in which employees feel empowered to take initiative to anticipate and solve problems tend to outperform peers where employees simply follow rules and directions. Proactive employees will identify new competitive threats and opportunities, anticipate changes in customer expectations, and keep their knowledge […]

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    In sports, as in business, limited attention affects risk-taking behaviour

In sports, as in business, limited attention affects risk-taking behaviour

People typically focus on the left-most digit of a number and pay only partial attention to other digits. This is why most prices in supermarkets are just below unit values (such as 99 cent or 3.99 pounds). In World Cup alpine ski events, this human tendency to pay only limited attention to certain digits makes athletes liable to take […]

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    New technology will make it easier to work in multilingual teams

New technology will make it easier to work in multilingual teams

When speaking on the phone, non-native speakers of a virtual team’s working language need to process a foreign language, understand different accents and immediately respond to their conversation partner. If their communication is dealing with highly complex topics, the need to master linguistic challenges while simultaneously thinking and deciding about the task can easily create cognitive overload. To avoid […]

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    Private sector management practices don’t work in welfare services

Private sector management practices don’t work in welfare services

A central focus of the neoliberal ideology that dominates politics today is the privatization and marketization of the welfare state. Where public agencies have been spared from outsourcing or privatisation, they are increasingly subject to private sector management principles and practices, adopted under the banner of reducing public sector costs, increasing public sector accountability and improving service quality.

The two […]

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    Having a voice in team decisions may not be a good idea for neurotic employees

Having a voice in team decisions may not be a good idea for neurotic employees

Being involved in decisions regarding one’s organisation has many benefits for both the employees and the organisation. Among these: stress reduction, improved motivation, higher quality of decisions… However, little is known on the consequences of such participation in the decision-making process within teams. Indeed, in the modern workplace, teamwork in flat organisations has become increasingly frequent. Interactions between co-workers […]

Middle managers play an essential role in executing change

There is much talk about change and how managers must communicate to ensure it occurs smoothly. However, seldom does advice for managing change go beyond language of change; the ways to explain the proposed change and persuade workers of its importance and guide them as they ‘get on board’. This advice rarely looks at the non-verbal tools that managers can […]