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The transition from academia to the world of work can often feel daunting, especially now as we navigate the world post-pandemic. Gen-Z, who spent a remarkable amount of time in lockdown, have missed key development opportunities and are now entering a workforce that is embracing more in person gatherings, events, and working styles.  

As Chief Science Officer of TalentPredix, Paula Baetu, stated in her latest podcast episode, a key talent management trend we are seeing now is how we can manage and bring the best out of the new generation of workers? The answer lies in a strengths-based talent approach. Far beyond the traditional resume checklist, this focuses on identifying and leveraging individual strengths, skills, and passions to propel career trajectories forward. By shifting the narrative from fixing weaknesses to amplifying strengths, graduates and early careers can unlock their full potential, navigate career transitions, and thrive in roles that align with their unique talents.  

Here are some more ways that a strengths-based approach can help early career professionals: 

Identification of Unique Strengths 

This approach helps individuals recognize and understand their unique strengths and talents, which may not be immediately obvious. Graduates often have a range of skills and abilities that they may not be fully aware of. Using an advanced strengths assessment tool such as TalentPredix™, you can learn more about both their talents and strengths to help you better understand where they might excel in the workplace.  

Increased Confidence and Self-Esteem 

A recent study by Personnel Today reports that around 66% of Gen-Z workers experience imposter syndrome, or the experience of believing you are less competent than others perceive you to be. Understanding and acknowledging one’s strengths can significantly boost confidence and self-esteem, help counteract those feelings, and foster a sense of competence and self-assurance. Additionally, employees who use their strengths are more likely to be engaged and perform at a higher level. For graduates and those in early careers, using strengths can accelerate learning and development, as they are building on natural abilities 

Better Career Alignment 

A strengths-based approach can guide graduates and early career individuals towards roles and industries where their strengths will be most valued and utilized. Using a tool like TalentPredix™ can help provide further clarity for both the graduate and the manager on what motivates them and how the graduate can align their career path to fit in with those combined motivators, strengths and talents. This alignment can lead to greater job satisfaction and success. 

Understanding their strengths can help graduates and early career professionals set more effective personal and professional development goals. Instead of focusing solely on improving weaknesses, they can also develop their strengths to a higher level of expertise.  

Positive Work Environment and Greater Satisfaction 

A strengths-based approach can contribute to a more positive and supportive work environment. When individuals understand theirs and their colleagues’ strengths, it can lead to better teamwork, collaboration, and appreciation of diverse skills within a team.  

Furthermore, when the individuals feel that their talents are being utilized and appreciated, they are more likely to remain committed to their career path and experience less burnout. This can also mean one feels a greater career satisfaction and longevity.  

In essence, a strengths-based talent approach empowers graduates and early career professionals to understand and leverage their unique abilities, leading to a more fulfilling and successful career trajectory. 

TalentPredix offers award-winning career development solutions to help you cultivate early career excellence to unlock exceptional talent and potential. Contact us to learn more: info@talentpredix.com.

In the quest for gender equality in the workplace, Human Resources managers and professionals play a pivotal role. By implementing targeted strategies and initiatives, they can empower women, promote inclusive environments, and drive organizational success. Here are several ways they can make a positive difference: 

 1. Implement Gender-Inclusive Policies and Practices 

HR leaders can lead the way by creating gender-inclusive policies and practices that promote equal opportunities for women. This includes revising recruitment and hiring processes to mitigate unconscious bias, implementing pay equity measures, and ensuring that performance evaluations are fair and transparent. By challenging and eliminating systemic barriers, HR leaders can create a level playing field for women to thrive in the workplace. 

 2. Offer Tailored Learning and Development Programs 

Learning and Development (L&D) professionals can design and implement specialized programs tailored specifically for women in the workplace, addressing their distinct needs and hurdles. Such programs can range from leadership development initiatives to negotiation skills workshops, and efforts aimed at enhancing confidence, resilience, and assertiveness. By equipping women with the necessary tools and support, L&D professionals can play a pivotal role in enabling women to progress in their careers and realize their full potential. However, for these programs to achieve broader success, it’s crucial that men are included rather than excluded. Including men in these initiatives helps break down the attitudinal and other workplace barriers and educates them on the biases and challenges that hinder progress. This inclusion fosters a collaborative environment where everyone is engaged in finding solutions, thereby encouraging a collective responsibility to positive change. 

3. Focus on strengths-based talent strategies   

A focus on strengths acknowledges the unique contribution everyone brings to the team, promoting a more inclusive workplace. For women, this can mean greater appreciation of their unique strengths and contributions, which might be overlooked in a more traditional, weakness-based workplaces. Studies show that focusing on strengths can also boost employees’ confidence by recognizing and validating their core strengths and other positive qualities. This is particularly important for women in environments where gender biases and other barriers may otherwise undermine women’s self-esteem. 

4. Provide Mentorship and Sponsorship Opportunities 

Mentorship and sponsorship are invaluable tools for career advancement and growth. HR leaders and L&D professionals can facilitate mentorship programs that pair women with senior leaders who can provide guidance, support, and advocacy. Additionally, they can encourage the establishment of sponsorship relationships, where influential leaders actively promote the career advancement of women within the organization. 

 5. Create Safe Spaces for Dialogue and Support 

Building a supportive and inclusive workplace culture requires open dialogue and a commitment to addressing gender-related issues. HR managers and L&D professionals can create safe spaces, such as employee resource groups or diversity councils, where women can share their experiences, voice concerns, and seek support. By fostering a culture of inclusivity and belonging, they can empower women to thrive in their roles and contribute fully to the organization. 

 6. Lead by Example and Champion Diversity 

Finally, we must remember to lead by example and champion diversity and inclusion initiatives within their organizations. By demonstrating a commitment to gender equality and advocating for change, they can inspire others to follow suit and drive meaningful progress. Whether it’s through policy advocacy, employee training, or organizational initiatives, their leadership can pave the way for a more equitable and inclusive workplace. 

Empowering women in the workplace requires a multifaceted approach that involves collaboration between organizational leaders in all levels and departments. By implementing gender-inclusive policies, offering tailored learning and development programs, cultivating a strengths-based organizational culture, fostering mentorship opportunities, creating safe spaces for dialogue, and championing diversity, they can create environments where women can thrive and contribute to organizational success. Together, let’s work towards a future where gender equality is not just a goal but a reality in every workplace. 

TalentPredix are co-hosting a panel discussion on 10th April 2024 from 3-4:30pm UK time on Strengthening Women’s Leadership Development for Organizational Transformation. Sign up now! 

Understanding Others is crucial at every level of the organization, particularly for leaders and managers seeking to enhance their own and their teams’ performance. When being used optimally (what we refer to as “In the Zone”), behaviours associated with this strength include taking the time to listen to colleagues to understand things from their point of view, giving emotional space to understand how your people are feeling and stepping in to help others when they are upset, overwhelmed or emotionally low.  

However, when used too much or in the wrong way (what we refer to as “Overuse or In-excess”) excess, Understanding Others may result in some of the following behaviours: 

 
However, there are a variety of techniques that highly empathetic leaders and employees can apply to avoid these risks, such as: 

Separating emotions and personal life from work  

This is not to say that leaders should embody indifference at work. Instead, they should take care to boundary their personal time and mental energy so that they do not get overinvolved in others’ problems. If they don’t do this, their tendency to identify too much with others’ emotions and provide support to others when they are in distress or experiencing challenges at work or in their personal life may end up being detrimental to their own work, mental health and personal happiness. In extreme cases, it can also result in an unhealthy relationship of dependency that can prevent people from becoming more self-sufficient, confident, and resilient.  

Set clear guidelines and expectations – and enforce them 

As mentioned earlier, some may take advantage of the leader’s/person’s warm and compassionate nature and inclination to help. This may result in them find opportunities to offload unwanted work inappropriately or abusing the leader’s warm-hearted and understanding nature. To avoid this, leaders should clearly communicate role responsibilities and ensure people are held accountable to what has been agreed and subsequently delegated. If it is apparent that a team member is struggling with their workload, the leader should show empathy and understanding in helping the person to improve, particularly where these challenges are caused by genuine personal challenges outside work (e.g., major illness in the family). However, while reasonable allowances can be made, the leader needs to remain firm about what needs to be delivered and offer only reasonable assistance to address any shortfalls.  

Don’t constantly try to rescue others  

Whilst compassionate and understand leaders typically have good intentions by stepping in to try and help others, they often end up doing more harm than good. Check in with your direct reports and colleagues whether they need help before stepping in to rescue them. If they do need help, provide advice and guidance of where to find the best support (e.g., through the HR function, GP practice, professional counselling services) rather than always trying to provide this yourself.   

Understanding others is essential for leaders and managers to enhance performance and build strong, positive relationships at work. However, it should be balanced to avoid emotional exhaustion, dependency, and interference. By setting boundaries, establishing clear expectations, and providing support when truly needed, empathetic leaders can create a thriving work environment that fosters self-sufficiency, self-confidence, and success. 

To find out how we can help your organization avoid using overused talents to help your employees to thrive in their career, contact us at info@talentpredix.com.  

A manager has many responsibilities, one of which is keeping their team engaged and motivated at work. Unfortunately, the economic slowdown and threat of a recession make this harder on managers, while also negatively impacting employee morale, leading to decreased productivity, increased absenteeism, and higher turnover rates. This has been amplified by The Great Resignation, where employees are willingly leaving their jobs to pursue other opportunities because in the past few years, the demand for talent has grown and now exceeds supply in many occupational areas like software development, B2B sales and leadership. Current data from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) predicts that one in five of UK workers will seek other employment options this year. More recent research from Unum UK, an employee benefits provider, found that 19% of workers plan to look for a new position in 2023.  

However, the outlook for employers is not all bleak as recent trends show the rise of Boomerang Employees. The World Economic Forum defines this phenomenon as “staff who leave their jobs but choose to return at a later point when the stress passes or priorities shift”. Data shows that 1 in 5 people who have quit their jobs during the pandemic have gone back to the job that they have left. This suggests that employees are realizing that the grass is not always greener on the other side, and the demotivating factor/s that caused them to leave in the first place are being tackled more swiftly by employers who are keen to war for the best talent. For example, many companies that previously had no flexible work policies are implementing these to remain competitive in an increasingly ‘hot’ talent market.  

There are a number of steps managers can take to keep employee engagement and morale up during times of uncertainty, and create a culture that employees will not want to leave, but also are more inclined to return to if they do resign: 

  1. Be transparent and communicate frequently – During times of uncertainty, employees want regular updates and transparency from their managers. Make sure you communicate openly and honestly with your team about the state of the company, any upcoming changes, and how they may be affected. This can help alleviate anxiety and prevent rumors from spreading. 
  1. Show empathy and support – Layoffs and the threat of recession can take a toll on employees’ mental health and wellbeing. As a manager, it’s essential to show empathy and support to your team during this time. Listen to their concerns, offer resources, and support, and encourage them to take care of themselves both physically and mentally. 
  1. Provide opportunities for development and growth – Even in challenging times, employees want to feel like they are progressing in their careers. Provide opportunities for learning and development, such as training sessions, coaching or mentorship programs. This can help employees feel more engaged and invested in their work, especiallyduring tough times. 
  1. Recognize and reward accomplishments – During a time of layoffs and recession, it’s easy for employees to feel like their work doesn’t matter and isn’t appreciated. As a manager, try to recognize and reward accomplishments and effort, no matter how small This can help boost morale and reinforce the value of your employees’ contributions. 
  1. Foster a positive culture and team spirit – Finally, it’s essential to foster a positive culture and team spirit during tough times. Encourage teamwork, celebrate wins together, and prioritize team-building activities. Promote strengths-based work practices so people can spend more time at work doing activities that really energize them and align with their career goals. This can help create a sense of unity and support within your team, even when times are tough. 

Implementing simple, actionable ways to keep employees engaged during the economic slowdown will not only improve performance, motivation and retention, but former employees may even boomerang back onto your team.  

As a leader in strengths-based assessment, development and coaching, TalentPredix can help you boost employee engagement, performance and retention. Contact us to learn more.

Disengaged employees can be detrimental to productivity, employee engagement and overall output. Our previous blog covered signs managers should look out for in employees to help nip this problem in the bud.  

Spot and prevent low motivation and engagement   

Of course, the best way to ward off quiet quitting is for managers to check in on the motivation of their people on a regular basis. There are different ways of doing this, including careful observation of behaviour, emotions and energy shifts, engagement surveys and asking questions that uncover people’s motivation during regular check-ins and quarterly performance review meetings. Some of the questions managers can consider asking are as follows: 

Once managers identify a disengaged employees they can explore the root cause of their low engagement in a one-on-one conversation. 

Amplify strengths, successes and progress 

Managers, like most of us, are conditioned to focus more on the negatives we see rather than the positives. This is what psychologists call the “negativity bias”. It is therefore important for managers to consciously learn to spot and magnify strengths, successes and progress, even small wins and shifts in effort. 

By giving positive feedback and praise, managers will promote progress, excellence, and employee engagement. When people feel they are valued and their progress and achievements are recognized regularly by their manager, they are more likely to feel motivated and exert higher levels of discretionary effort (i.e., effort over and above the required level).  

Conduct retention/stay interviews 

Retention interviews are a powerful tool to improve employee experience, build trust, and nip problems in the bud. RotaCloud recommends that retention interviews should be kept relatively informal, held in private, and be consistent as much as possible across different team members. Keeping consistency might be difficult, as everyone has their own sentiments and feelings, but managers can keep a set of key questions or discussion points handy and let the conversation flow from there. This can be done in both in-person and remote or hybrid workplaces. Responses should be collated and kept on record somewhere in order to refer to eventually.   

Demonstrate empathy 

It is important that managers self-reflect and be empathetic above all else. Try to picture themselves in the position of their employees and see their realities to understand where they are coming from. Reflect on how they would react if they were put in their employees’ position? Additionally, consider the employees themselves and the value they have brought to the team, and their strengths and their talents and how these can be further supported to allow them to thrive.  

Act on employee feedback 

Taking this into consideration, it is now time for the manager to act on the feedback given from their employees. It may be revealed that employees are frustrated with a lack of progression and/or development opportunities available to them, then the manager should explore options in upskilling and/or career development for their people. In virtual teams, managers may find that some employees feel disconnected from the broader workforce. This last one might be common among the younger workforce, who are likely dealing with proportionately more “Zoom fatigue” from the pandemic. If this is the case, the leader should find more creative ways to foster connectivity or, if possible, try to organize in-person events to enable the employees to connect with each other more. 

Lastly, it should be ensured that this feedback loop is not a one-off occurrence. A communication line has been opened, and it should be kept this way. The manager should devise a plan to regularly collect feedback, comments, and suggestions from their team, and be flexible enough and willing to find ways to act on suggestions being made. Data can be collected either through formal measures like sending out employee engagement surveys or more informal measures such as sitting down and having a conversation or booking regular one-on-one meetings. Gallup finds that the best practice is for managers to have meaningful 15–30-minute conversations once a week with each employee.  

By actively listening to the needs and wants of their people, managers foster a work environment that is inclusive and supportive, which can help their team members feel valued, motivate them to perform at their best and thus address the issue of employee disengagement.  

TalentPredix has the strengths-based tools, resources, and skills to engage employees to help you build a thriving place to work so your people can reach their full potential. Contact us today to learn more.

The term ‘quiet quitting’ has made the rounds online, from starting conversations and debate on all corners of the internet, to even being named one of Collins Dictionary’s Word of the Year. Collins has defined it as “the practice of doing no more work than one is contractually obligated to do.”  

RotaCloud, a staff management software company, has now identified a new workplace trend to succeed quiet quitting called “resenteeism.” They define it as staying in a job, despite being fundamentally unhappy and actively resenting it. Concerns over job security, cost of living, or a lack of alternative employment options are cited as reasons that employees stay. The main difference that resenteeism has from its predecessor is that the employee is more vocal about their dissatisfaction and may potentially influence the opinions and attitudes of others.  

However, a common denominator between the two is that it all boils down to employee engagement, or a lack thereof. Indeed’s Work Happiness Score revealed that more than one third of U.K. employees are unhappy in their current job roles. Employee engagement is nothing new in the HR industry, but recent events like the pandemic and cost of living crisis have brought it front and center. But the question remains – what can managers do to engage their employees and prevent dissatisfaction?  

Primarily, managers need to be engaged and present at work, so they can identify which employees are putting in less effort than before and seem disengaged from the wider workforce. In a hybrid or remote settings, being present could mean reaching out more to employees to be more visible and keep communication lines open. Being engaged as a remote manager could also mean giving your employees the autonomy and flexibility to do the work on their own time but ensuring that performance standards and deadlines are clearly communicated.  

Some signs managers should look out for in employees: 

In our next article, we will explore how managers can reengage a disengaged employee to achieve better outputs and productivity.  

TalentPredix has the tools, resources, and skills to engage employees to help you build a thriving place to work so your people can reach their full potential. Contact us today to learn more