Leadership Courses

Frequently Asked Questions about Leadership

What careers can a Leadership and Management qualification get me?

A qualification in Leadership and Management can grow your career into many jobs in virtually any industry. After studying a Diploma of Leadership & Management (BSB50420), you may be suited for a range of careers such as a team leader or office manager. A Diploma of Business (Leadership) (BSB50120) can set you up for a range of skills to become a Business Development Manager, too.

An advanced diploma can grow your career even further and put you on the path to becoming an Operations Team Manager or a Business Manager. The opportunities in Leadership and Management are abundant.

What skills do I need for a career in Leadership and Management?

Our Leadership and Management courses are designed to equip you with the technical and interpersonal skills you need to be successful in your leadership career. A qualification in Leadership and Management will demonstrate that you have the key skills to get ahead, including:

  • Strong communication and interpersonal skills
  • People management, and
  • Workplace planning skills.
Do I need a degree for a career in Leadership and Management?

You don’t need a degree to become a leader or manager, but a Diploma is well sought after by employers and will teach you a range of practical and interpersonal skills that will allow you to thrive in a senior role.

Studying a Leadership and Management course will give you the foundation skills you need to kickstart your career and apply practical skills like communication and people management straight into your job. With a few years of experience, the right set of hands-on skills, and a recognised Advanced Diploma qualification, you can look to make a move into becoming Business Manager, or other managerial roles in the industry.

What are the best Leadership & Management courses to study in Australia?

The best Leadership and Management courses to study are vocational qualifications, including the Diploma of Leadership and Management (BSB50420) and the Advanced Diploma of Leadership & Management (BSB60420). Getting qualified with a Nationally Recognised course demonstrates a level of skill that employers can rely on, with the right combination of practical skills and interpersonal capabilities to move up the career ladder and apply your knowledge in various roles and sectors relating to leadership and management.

What are three careers in leadership and management?

The careers you can pursue with a diploma in leadership and management are endless. One career you can pursue with a leadership diploma is the role of team leader within your respective industry. Team leaders have responsibilities over other individuals in the team and provide guidance and leadership to the team. They delegate tasks, manage workloads and help with any issues to ensure the smooth running of a team. Team leaders can expect to earn around $66,000 average annual salary (PayScale).

Office managers are crucial to the successful running of an office. Office managers oversee any office departments, and look after administration software, processes and functions, implementing office procedures, staff needs, and solving any problems that may arise within the office or administrative spheres. Office managers can expect to earn an average annual salary of around $61,000 (PayScale).

General managers are in charge of organisation, planning and managing day-to-day operations and overall departmental functions. General managers in Australia can expect to earn a starting average annual salary of $113,000 (Job Outlook). Becoming a business development manager is another important business management job role you can pursue as a qualified professional, and is more focused on the strategic direction, growth and achievement of the organisation’s long-term goals.

Can I study a Leadership and Management course online?

Leadership and Management courses are a perfect fit for online and self-paced study. By learning at your own pace, you’re not held back by the speed of the classroom and you have the freedom to pause and pick up your studies around your own schedule.

Whether you’re looking to upskill, change career or kickstart a new pathway, studying leadership and management online is a smart choice to earn the practical skills you need to excel paired with the flexibility to study when and where it suits you.

How long does it take to study a Leadership and Management course?

A Diploma course can take approximately 12 months to complete if studying full-time, Certificate IV courses can be as short as 10 months full-time, while you should expect around 18 months to complete an Advanced Diploma. The duration of your qualification is also dependent on how many hours you put in each week to study, however at CAL all students are offered a generous 24-month enrolment period to complete their Leadership and Management qualifications at their own pace.

Do you need to study a Leadership and Management course to become a CEO?

Becoming a CEO usually needs at least an Advanced Diploma-level qualification coupled with a few years’ experience to be taken seriously in the industry. A Leadership and Management course will teach the relevant technical skills and know-how like persuasive communication and how to liaise with stakeholders and managers, as well as the transferable people and business management skills essential for getting ahead in the leadership and management industry. Industry experience is strongly recommended, with most professionals having two years of experience before undertaking a Leadership and Management Diploma.

Your future in Leadership

Leadership and management careers are best suited to those with strong interpersonal skills and qualities such as people management, strategic thinking, and communication. While many of these skills are abilities found through experience and personal values, many can be learned through a formal qualification.

Skills developed in a leadership and management course at the College for Adult Learning will put you straight into high-level management positions in your chosen industry. Common practical skills in management you’ll learn are client management, understanding of workplace regulations, risk awareness, data analysis, and report writing.

Studying a qualification at CAL is the first step into your career pathway in leadership and management. Find out more about the skills required to excel in these positions, and what roles and salaries you can expect upon completion.

Discover your future here

About Leadership

Do I Need A Qualification To Start A Business?

The short answer is (usually) no. However, although there isn’t a rule to say you need a qualification to start a business, those with formal education tend to see more success in the long run. By investing in your learning, you place yourself at the front of the pack both as a business owner and a leader in your organisation. The guiding support of a diploma or formal qualification can help you get closer to your dream business. You may need to hold a qualification or other requirements to make your business compliant. These requirements vary from industry to industry and are dependent on what your business deals with. For example: Accountants need to hold a CPA (Certified Practising Accountant). Builders require a licence. Practice managers often need to hold a medical diploma or higher such as a Diploma of Practice Management and a Diploma of Nursing. Depending on the business you’re starting, you may need to register as a nurse or with a medical association.  Working with alcohol requires proper liquor licensing and a Responsible Service of Alcohol (RSA) certificate.  Working with/caring for children requires a Working With Children check. These requirements vary industry to industry and states and territories have different compliance criteria that you may need to meet.  Will a qualification make me a better leader?  A successful business owner has the knowledge and understanding to grow not only their business but also their team. The ability to demonstrate a range of important soft skills will push you to be a better leader. Some of the soft skills that are vital for business ownership include:  Time management Communication  Problem-solving  Teamwork  Although these intangible skills can be difficult to develop, a Diploma of Leadership & Management (BSB50420) or similar will give you the skills to put your business on the road to success and give you the confidence to build and manage your team. Learning to strengthen these skills through formal training can also help your business grow as your team has more trust in you as a business owner.  Download our FREE 'Your Career in Leadership & Management' Guide Find the latest information in our eBook about a career in leadership and management, including current job opportunities, soft skills you need, salary information and more. DOWNLOAD MY FREE GUIDE   Can a qualification increase your earning potential? According to research by ABS, people with a formal qualification on average earn more than those without any formal education. In fact, a VET qualification can potentially earn you more than an undergraduate or university qualification. Those who hold a vocational education qualification have a higher starting salary than university graduates and are more likely to find work quickly. By combining theory, practice, and on-the-job knowledge, you demonstrate the value of your business to clients and build trust as an expert in your trade. This reinforces trust with clients, solidifying that you are the right go-to person in your industry. In turn, perceived expertise can bring more clients (and money) to your business. How do you build valuable industry connections? Developing skills through formal education gives you access to the resources and knowledge that can help you stay up-to-date with industry trends, keeping your business relevant. You can also grow your network with like-minded individuals looking to advance their careers and strengthen their businesses. Connecting with other passionate business owners can open your mind to creative solutions and help motivate you in your business journey. Should I get a qualification when starting my own business? There are many fundamental elements to starting a business. You will have to consider finances, research, suppliers, manufacturers, distributors, marketing, sales, and different tasks you haven’t thought about yet. A qualification will give you the skills to run your own business and the confidence to bring your business to greater success.  Putting in the effort to further your education and gain a qualification is not just about getting that piece of paper at the end. It teaches you the expertise that will harbour success and gives you the skills to take your career to the next level. Critically, it’s also a choice that you make for yourself. You can impact the how, what, when, and how hard you study. This demonstrates to clients that you are dedicated to providing real value to your business and shows yourself that you can achieve anything you put your mind to.  Rather than relying on teachers, you learn to rely on yourself – which is in itself a great skill. It fosters self-assuredness and an ability to use initiative, to be autonomous and to make decisions, all of which will make running a business easier. What is the right course for you as a business owner? Starting a business has the potential to be one of your most rewarding endeavours. You get to see your ideas come to life and your product valued by consumers. However, if you have never owned a business or had staff looking to you for direction, being a boss can be a tough learning curve. The good news is that all these skills can be developed and strengthened.  A great way to amplify these skills and gain up-to-date, relevant knowledge is to invest in a Diploma of Business (Leadership) (BSB50120) and/or a Diploma of Leadership & Management (BSB50420). You will learn how to manage a business and build the knowledge that you need to put your business on the road to success. Taking this leap into business ownership can be daunting, but when it succeeds, it feels even more rewarding. Backing yourself up with the necessary tools will help you position your business to be more trusted, valued, and respected by your customers in the industry.  What's your Management Trajectory? Are you wondering how far away you are from your next promotion? Take our quiz to assess your management career pathway. GO TO QUIZ

Tribal Leadership by Dave Logan

10 Leadership Books To Help You Grow

In today’s fast-paced and ever-changing business landscape, effective leadership has become more crucial than ever. Great leaders possess the ability to inspire, motivate, and guide their teams towards success. If you’re seeking to enhance your leadership skills and unlock your full potential, look no further. We have compiled a list of transformative leadership books that will empower you to become a better leader. Deep Work by Cal Newport In a world of constant distractions and information overload, the ability to focus deeply on meaningful tasks is becoming increasingly rare and valuable. Cal Newport’s ‘Deep Work’ is a ground-breaking leadership book that explores the concept of deep work and its impact on productivity and professional success. By adopting strategies to minimise distractions and carve out dedicated time for focused work, you can unlock your full potential as a leader. Newport’s insights will help you cultivate the ability to produce high-quality work in a world filled with endless demands for attention. Originals by Adam Grant Innovation and creativity are vital for any leader who wants to drive meaningful change. Adam Grant’s ‘Originals’ delves into the fascinating world of non-conformists and trailblazers who challenge the status quo. Through captivating stories and rigorous research, Grant reveals how original thinkers generate and champion new ideas. By understanding the principles of originality and fostering a culture that encourages diverse perspectives, you can inspire innovation within your team and organisation. Tribal Leadership by Dave Logan Leadership is not just about individual capabilities; it also involves effectively managing group dynamics and building a cohesive organisational culture. In ‘Tribal Leadership’, Dave Logan explores the stages of tribal development within organisations and provides practical strategies for leaders to create high-performing teams. By understanding the different stages and leveraging the strengths of each, you can foster a culture of collaboration, trust, and shared vision, propelling your team to new heights. Cut the Noise by Chris Helder Leadership requires effective communication that cuts through the noise and delivers clear, compelling, messages. In ‘Cut The Noise’, Chris Helder offers powerful strategies to enhance your communication skills and influence others positively. By distilling complex information into concise and impactful messages, you can engage and inspire your team, stakeholders and customers. Helder’s leadership book will equip you with the tools to become more persuasive and influential. Useful Belief by Chris Helder Our beliefs shape our actions and ultimately determine our success. In ‘Useful Belief’, Chris Helder introduces the concept of adopting beliefs that empower and propel us forward. By replacing limited beliefs with useful ones, leaders can overcome challenges, foster resilience, and inspire their teams. Helder’s practical techniques will help you develop a positive mindset and create an environment that encourages growth and achievement. Leaders Eat Last by Simon Sinek In ‘Leaders Eat Last’, Simon Sinek explores the importance of fostering a culture of trust, collaboration and selflessness within organisations. Drawing upon examples from the military and successful companies, Sinek empahsises the significance of leaders who prioritise the well-being of their team members. This leadership book teaches you how to create an environment where individuals feel valued, safe, and motivated to contribute their best work. Dare to Lead by Brene Brown Brene Brown’s ‘Dare to Lead’ challenges conventional notions of leadership and encourages leaders to embrace vulnerability, courage, and empathy. Brown argues that true leadership requires authenticity and a willingness to lean into discomfort. Through powerful storytelling and research backed insights, she offers actionable strategies to cultivate brave leaders and foster a culture of trust and innovation. This leadership book will inspire you to lead with your whole heart and create a workplace that encourages growth and resilience. The Five Dysfunctions of a Team by Patrick Lencioni Building and leading a cohesive team is a fundamental aspect of effective leadership. In ‘The Five Dysfunctions of a Team’, Patrick Lencioni explores the common pitfalls that hinder team performance and provides practical solutions to overcome them. By addressing issues such as trust, conflict, and accountability, you can foster a highly productive and harmonious team that achieves outstanding results. Emotional Intelligence by Daniel Goleman Emotional intelligence is a critical skill for leaders to navigate complex interpersonal relationships and understand the emotions of their team members. In his book, ‘Emotional Intelligence’, Daniel Goleman explores the five components of this soft skill and highlights its significance in leadership success. Through real-life examples and scientific research, Goleman demonstrates how leaders can cultivate self-awareness, empathy, and effective communication to inspire and motivate their teams. This book will help you harness the power of emotions and lead with greater understanding and impact. Drive by Daniel H. Pink Motivating and engaging your team is a key responsibility of a leader. In ‘Drive’, Daniel H. Pink challenges traditional notions of what drives human motivation. By examining research from the fields of psychology and behavioral economics, Pink introduces the concept of intrinsic motivation and highlights the importance of autonomy, mastery, and purpose in the workplace. This leadership book offers valuable insights into creating an environment that fosters individual and collective motivation, enabling you to unleash the full potential of your team. Your leadership journey Becoming a better leader is an ongoing journey that requires dedication and continuous learning. By immersing yourself in the wisdom and insights offered by these books, you will gain valuable perspectives, practical strategies, and tools to enhance your leadership abilities. Grab a copy of these books, invest in your personal growth and unlock your potential as a leader. Formalise your soft skills and learn the technical abilities you need to be a strong leader with the College for Adult Learning’s Diploma of Leadership and Management (BSB50420). This qualification will equip you with the skills to communicate with influence, drive performance and innovation, and achieve organisational goals. Take the next step in your career with a leadership qualification. Share you favourite book Download our FREE 'Your Career in Leadership & Management' Guide Find the latest information in our eBook about a career in leadership and management, including current job opportunities, soft skills you need, salary information and more. DOWNLOAD MY FREE GUIDE

good decision making skills in leadership

Good Decision-Making Skills in Leadership

We make decisions at work every day – big and small, good and bad. Working in a leadership position entails stepping into the office every day with many choices to be made. This means that being an effective decision-maker isn’t just a nice skill to have in this profession – it’s critical. In this article, we’ll discuss decision-making styles and processes, so you can embrace your leadership capabilities and become a more effective decision-maker. Who is involved in making company decisions? Three groups of people are involved in decisions: Those who make them Those who must carry them out Those who will be affected by them As you can imagine, every person in this process will have their own needs, wants and desired outcomes. It’s your job as a leader to come to the most effective resolution that will cater to all three groups. The four decision-making styles Different decision-making styles can help or hinder a leader when making decisions for their business or team. Before settling on which decision-making process is right for you, you need to figure out what your decision-making style is. Most experts agree that there are four different decision-making styles. Each has unique understandings and challenges, so it can be incredibly insightful to understand which one best reflects your style. Analytical decision-making Analytical decision-makers generally take the longest to come to conclusions as they like to take their time to look at all the options and facts. This style is invaluable when making an important or non-time-sensitive decision. However, you may struggle to make a choice until you’re certain it’s the right one. Sometimes, when making decisions, you will never truly know if it’s the right choice until you’ve chosen. This can stall the process and be tiresome if a decision can’t be reached. Directive decision-making Directive decision-makers don’t mind making quick decisions. If you are prompted to make a choice, you’re happy to decide then and there. You don’t like to dwell on details too much, preferring fast results. This style is fantastic when making choices under pressure or with limited importance. However, when you have the time, the results from directive decisions may not always be the best outcome if you don’t take the time to think things through. Conceptual decision-making Conceptual decision-makers ‘think bigger’ and the term ‘outside the box’ was essentially coined for them. You may find yourself drawn to different and creative approaches and aren’t afraid to try something new. This style is perfect when innovative outcomes are favoured. However, you can also find yourself biting off more than you can chew if you don’t have a thorough plan to follow through with your big dreams. Behavioural decision-making Behavioural decision-makers are great at listening to and respecting the opinions, wants and needs of everyone influenced by their decisions. This is a particularly great soft skill in leadership, as empathy and understanding of your team will help you go far. This style is ideal for mutli-touch decisions that affect an organisation or multiple teams or departments. However, you’ll need to watch out for a tendency to people-please – you can’t please everyone 100% of the time. What's your Management Trajectory? Are you wondering how far away you are from your next promotion? Take our quiz to assess your management career pathway. GO TO QUIZ   Which decision-making style is for you? Think critically and honestly about your decision-making style and what sort of problems you might face in the decision-making process as a result of your style. How can you ensure these don’t become an issue? What can you learn about the different styles and their optimal uses for different kinds of decisions? Be aware of potential setbacks and make a plan to tackle them head-on. Decision-making red flags and how to avoid them Three red flags can contribute to poor decision-making. These include: Inappropriate self-interest Distorting attachments to people, places or things Misleading memories – memories that take us down the wrong path To counteract these red flags, use these safeguards to ensure you don’t fall trap to bias. Ensure fresh, alternating experiences and/or analysis in the process Include robust and challenging debate about the process, assumptions, decision model, criteria, evaluation and risk analysis Ensure strong governance in decision-making authority List good boundaries Ensure decision-makers have no inappropriate self-interest Identify who the key decision-makers are Download our FREE 'Your Career in Leadership & Management' Guide Find the latest information in our eBook about a career in leadership and management, including current job opportunities, soft skills you need, salary information and more. DOWNLOAD MY FREE GUIDE   What does a good decision-making process look like? McKinsey & Company released a series of papers on decision-making. They reported that decisions initiated and approved by the same person produced the worst results. Decisions made without any strategic planning or context also generated extremely poor results. To avoid these unfavourable outcomes, McKinsey suggested three themes that contributed to organisations achieving good decision outcomes. 1. Assessment The first theme is a tough and accurate assessment which assesses: The situation The ability to execute the decision How to evaluate decisions Crucial factors that may impact the decision Competitor capabilities and reactions Risk analysis 2. Practice The second theme is a strong ‘business case’ approach to the process and includes: Listening to dissenting voices Identifying and managing bias Identifying and considering alternatives and barriers Analysing sensitivity Reviewing experience Creating decision criteria Ensuring organisational goals have predominance over the business unit and individual goals Involving participants in the decision-making process based on their skills and experience 3. Targets The third theme considers financial and strategic targets in setting outcomes for the short-term and long-term. Decision-making process example Using these three themes, we can now use them to create a more detailed process. The decision-making process can be big, but it doesn’t need to be bad. With your new understanding of your decision-making style, red flags to look out for and the perfect process, you can have confidence in whatever decision you make next. Your Career in Leadership and Management Do you want to learn more about leadership and management skills you need to be a good leader, emerging job roles and salaries, and recent industry insights?  Discover your career in leadership and management.  LEADERSHIP AND MANAGEMENT CAREER PAGE

Business Management vs Leadership: Which is right for me?

Are you looking to begin a career in management or leadership? Perhaps you’re keen to take the next step in your career to improve your job prospects. Both the Diploma of Business (Leadership) (BSB50120) and Diploma of Leadership and Management (BSB50420) are excellent choices for giving you a stepping stone into a rewarding career in leadership, management or both. A wide variety of people are suited to a career path in leadership and management. You do not necessarily need a lot of prior work experience to succeed in these roles – these qualifications are well suited to a range of candidates, no matter their employment history. Which diploma is best for me? Both diploma qualifications are well aligned with those seeking leadership and management positions. However, the choice depends on exactly what you’re looking for in your future career, which may mean that a particular course is a better match for you. For example, while the Diploma of Business (Leadership) is better suited to those who want to manage both people and businesses effectively, the Diploma of Leadership and Management is a better match for those seeking to step into senior management roles. Benefits of the Diploma of Leadership and Management (BSB50420) The leadership management diploma is a fully accredited diploma qualification that equips students with the skills required for a successful career in management. By completing units such as Manage People Performance, Lead and Manage Effective Workplace Relationships and Manage Personal and Professional Development, this well-rounded diploma is ideal for those looking to manage a team in a mid or senior management role. This qualification is suited to people with previous work experience looking at taking the next step in their career or those who may have some informal leadership experience and are looking to learn more about management. However, even those with no previous leadership experience will benefit from the course’s practical and highly relevant nature, which ensures students are job-ready when they graduate. Your Career in Leadership and Management Do you want to learn more about leadership and management skills you need to be a good leader, emerging job roles and salaries, and recent industry insights?  Discover your career in leadership and management.  LEADERSHIP AND MANAGEMENT CAREER PAGE What can I do with a Diploma in Leadership and Management (BSB50420)? Upon graduating with a management diploma, students can find work in various industries such as financial services, retail management, hospitality management, operations, supply chain management and building and construction management. In Australia, 70.4% of managers have at least a diploma qualification. Graduates could end up in roles such as Assistant Manager, Manager, Chief Operating Officer, Head of Operations, Director, Executive or Project Manager, depending on their chosen industry. Benefits of the Diploma of Business (Leadership) (BSB50120) This business diploma is a nationally recognised qualification that focuses on arming students with business management and leadership skills that will hold them in good stead for a vast range of future careers. This qualification features units such as Lead Communication in the Workplace, Manage Team Effectiveness, Develop Critical Thinking in Others and Manage Business Resources. The strong focus on leadership and complementary skills in business operations is the ideal pairing for roles that require both people and business management skills. This diploma differs from the Diploma of Leadership and Management in that there is a stronger focus on business operations. As a result, a qualification in Business (Leadership) is well suited to those who manage or run a business. It is also ideal if you are looking to couple leadership positions with operational or financial responsibilities or gain traction for a promotion or career change. Your Career in Business Management Do you want to learn more about business management skills employers demand, emerging job roles and salaries, and recent industry insights?  Discover your career in business management.  BUSINESS MANAGEMENT CAREER PAGE Is the Diploma of Business (Leadership) (BSB50120) a good course for me? A Diploma of Business (Leadership) is an excellent choice for those who want a broad yet highly relevant qualification that will allow them to move into leadership positions in their career. You will graduate equipped with a range of practical operational skills applicable in a wide variety of industries. Graduates can find work in almost all industries in roles ranging from team leader, supervisor, manager or director. What about the Diploma of Business (Operations) (BSB50120)? The Diploma of Business (Operations) (BSB50120) is another offering by the College for Adult Learning that suits a wide selection of students. It differs from the Diploma of Business (Leadership) and Diploma of Leadership and Management as it has a much stronger focus on the operational side of managing a business. The course equips students with the skills to not only successfully manage people but to operate a business too. Students learn specific operations and supply chain management skills to ensure the smooth day-to-day aspects of running a business. This particular diploma qualification is best for people more interested in business operations and the technical, day-to-day operational side of a business. However, this qualification will also give you the skills to manage and lead a team. How to choose the best diploma for you For those looking for a career in leadership and management, a well-rounded diploma qualification from the College for Adult Learning is an ideal stepping stone into a rewarding career. These courses equip graduates with the practical and theoretical skills required to excel in any future role. However, the perfect choice for each student is dependent on their specific career goals. Talk to our team today to help you decide which course is right for you. Match Your Strengths to the Right Diploma

9 Steps for Effective Goal Setting

Without goals, you can lack focus and direction. Setting personal goals puts you in the driver’s seat, giving you the power to transform your own life into whatever direction you desire. However, in many circumstances, the initial goals we set out to complete are abandoned somewhere along the way. To accomplish your goals, you need to know how to set them. This process begins with careful consideration, followed by ample amounts of hard work in order to achieve what we set out to do. In order to make the most of this process, here are ten steps for effective goal setting: 1. Believe in the process The first step to goal setting is having absolute faith and belief in the process. If you don’t have the confidence in yourself and your abilities, then you might as well forget about your attempt to achieve your goals. If you are in doubt, look around you. Everything you can see began as a goal in someone’s head. Turn your thoughts into a reality. 2. Write it down In order to eventuate the goal, you have to plan your attack. Write your goals down and schedule dates for their completion and evaluation. This can be the key to success, as writing down your goals will position you as the creator. If you neglect this step, you may continue to forget them or they will diminish in importance. Having them somewhere that you see them every day will help to reiterate their significance and increase your chances of achieving them. 3. Set goals that are specific A goal has a much greater chance of being accomplished if it deals with specific facts and events. If your directions are vague, they can be misconstrued and easily skipped over. Specific goals provide regimen and precision to your training program. 4. Set goals that are measurable If your goals are able to adhere to concrete criteria, you are able to measure progress towards their achievement. If you identify what you will see, hear and feel when you reach your goal, you can feel as if you have accomplished something tangible. In order to achieve effective goal setting, you should break your goal down into measurable elements. 5. Set goals that are attainable While there is nothing wrong with shooting for the stars, it is important to investigate whether the goal is really applicable to you and your lifestyle. If you don’t have the time, money or experience to achieve something, you will be setting yourself up to fail and most certainly be miserable. For the most effective goal setting, ensure you are planning your steps wisely and establishing a realistic time frame that will allow you to carry out those steps. Download our FREE Guide to Goal Setting! Find valuable information on how to use goal mapping, set SMARTER goals, use resilience and gain access to our exclusive goal setting templates. DOWNLOAD MY FREE GUIDE 6. Set goals that are timely Every set goal should be grounded within a time frame. Without a time frame, there is no sense of urgency. Make a tentative plan of everything you do and the time in which you want to do it. Instilling deadlines will help you and your team work towards them, creating motivation that can keep morale high. However, creating time frames can be a tricky and sensitive task. On the one hand, being too stringent on the timely aspect of goal setting can motivate, but it can also have the opposite effect, demotivating if you aren’t ticking the boxes on schedule. 7. Remain accountable When you are working towards a goal, things are bound to get tough. When facing adversity, you have to hold yourself accountable. Telling your family and friends about your goals may give you the responsibility you need, helping you gather the support system to give you a push. If you remain accountable in your everyday life, you will also surround yourself with constant encouragement from those who are following your progress. 8. Don’t be afraid to ask for help When entering a new venture, it is crucial to learn from those around you. Asking for help is nothing to be ashamed of, as freshening up your skills may be the thing that sets you apart. Seeking advice may come in a variety of different forms: from asking a friend, to developing a mentor – these will only get you one step closer to achieving your goals. Many people find that going back to study is one of the most beneficial steps when attempting to successfully achieve a goal. Adult learning courses are available in a variety of helpful fields, with some like a Diploma of Project Management (BSB50820) specifically targeting those in your position. 9. Continuously assess your progress As time goes on, our goals are constantly changing and evolving. The end result may not look anything like what we initially set out to do; however, this can sometimes be a good thing. In order to learn from your mistakes and assist you next time, constantly assess your progress throughout your goal-setting journey.

5 Ways To Grow Your Career with a Leadership Course

Why do leaders matter? When considering if leadership courses work, it’s worth pondering what would our world look like without effective leadership. From political parties to armies and even sports clubs, very few would be successful were it not for strong, decisive direction, which is why a failure to address leadership issues is costing business dearly. Leadership research highlights that while 83% agree it’s important to develop leaders of the future, especially with baby boomers retiring at an increasing rate, more than three quarters (77%) believe they face a leadership gap. In contrast, 63% of younger workers say their leadership skills aren’t being nurtured. Each problem exacerbates the other, but ignoring the problem can affect a company’s bottom line. Investing in leadership course is one solution, and the evidence indicates both individuals and businesses have a lot to gain from formal leadership training. What are the advantages of management courses for an employee looking to lead in their workplace? Advantages of leadership training The advantages of leadership training should be obvious, but despite the growing leadership gap, very few businesses have leadership programs in place at all levels. Good leaders have the skills and ability to transform the workplace, can create stronger cultures, and increase efficiencies by inspiring their employees to work smarter. Initiating constructive weekly feedback will increase employee engagement by almost 50% compared to 18% for workers who don’t hear so frequently from the boss. A Study of Australian Leadership (SAL) undertaken by Melbourne University found that ‘senior leadership in Australian organisations is dominated by older men from English-speaking backgrounds’. Not that a lack of diversity is a problem unique to Australia. Globally, only 15% of board of director roles are held by women, despite evidence that increased female representation leads to better sales growth and better returns on investment. Leadership training is critical and must take a ‘whole-of-business’ approach to enhance its’ effects. Great leaders know the importance of communication to improve their negotiation skills and create better conflict management outcomes. How to get Actual Job Outcomes from Business and Leadership & Management Diplomas Five ways your leadership can thrive with a Management Studies course like the Diploma of Leadership & Management There are essential leadership skills that a Diploma of Management Studies can teach. The business world is crying out for the next generation of leaders, and formal qualifications will be critical to them. Right now, 76% of senior leaders in large, multi-site organisations have a tertiary qualification, compared with 49% of their counterparts in smaller enterprises. The fact is, Australian businesses invest far less than those in the USA, Asia and Europe on leadership development. Therefore, in many ways, taking the initiative by becoming qualified in leadership studies is a smart move. So what are the five key advantages of leadership courses such as a Diploma of Management Studies? 1. Increase your productivity and the productivity of others. Learning more about yourself naturally lends itself to self-improvement, and that will rub off on others. Investing in leadership training can result in a doubling of sales, 70% better employee retention rates, and substantial increases in customer satisfaction. All three of those measures improve a company’s bottom line. Success breeds confidence which tends to breed even more success. 2. Create and implement leadership strategies of your own. Helping shape the leaders of the future is a significant privilege. It’s not just a case of moulding somebody else’s leadership style in your own image, but instead, create a mentoring pathway which leaves behind an important legacy for others. You will never stop learning from those who will eventually succeed you, and along the way, you’ll discover innovative ways of developing and managing people too. Download our FREE 'Your Career in Leadership & Management' Guide Find the latest information in our eBook about a career in leadership and management, including current job opportunities, soft skills you need, salary information and more. DOWNLOAD MY FREE GUIDE 3. Have an impact far beyond the workplace. True leaders influence lives, not just jobs. Studies show that employees are nearly four times more likely to have a strong sense of purpose, and seven times more likely to be highly engaged if they are effectively coached, mentored, and listened to. Humans simply crave engagement and thrive on positive feedback. If a business leader can couple these skills while also positively impacting workplace diversity and culture, their influence can improve people’s outlooks, not just a company’s bottom line. How to Create an Inclusive Workplace 4. Seek creative ways to engage others. A great leader never stops learning. They may have a very defined leadership style but will remain open to new ideas of doing business. Listening, as opposed to hearing, becomes critical. Most people retain only 25% of what they hear, so it becomes apparent how essential listening to people is one skill that leaders need to develop over time. Seek to draw on the skills and experience of others who have new ideas and allow space for creativity to flourish. How to Build the Best Work Team 5. Become a better influencer, negotiator, and conflict manager. In many ways, these skills are an amalgam of the others listed above. By becoming more efficient, you influence productivity and workplace culture. Negotiation skills apply in multiple settings, from dealing with contractors to discussions with staff or unions about issues such as enterprise bargaining agreements (EBAs). Learning the process of resolving workplace conflict, again, has many and varied applications and can lead to retaining or losing key team members. Why a leadership course can work for you Good leaders inspire us to produce our best work. Truly great ones allow us to challenge our own perceived limitations and strive to do better. Considering that 75% of people leave their jobs because of their boss, and not the work itself, there’s a powerful incentive for businesses to get the right leaders. A solid foundation upon which to base their knowledge is perhaps the first advantages of leadership courses, and there’s no better way to do that than by getting the right formal qualifications. A Diploma of Leadership and Management (BSB50420) sets you on the right path towards an exciting future in which you can be your best, and help others to do so as well. There are few better ways of ensuring total job satisfaction.

Best Qualifications Needed to Succeed in the Mining Industry

Succeeding in the mining industry requires project management skills to keep several balls in the air at once. An average day can include tasks like managing large workforces, engaging contractors, sourcing plant and other equipment, keeping a close eye on budgets, and much more. An obvious first step on the path to such a career is a Diploma of Project Management (BSB50820), a Diploma of Building and Construction Management (CPC50320), or both. Management in mining is a very high earning career for good reason, as a talented project manager or construction manager can save an employer from substantial losses on big mining projects through experience, staying calm under pressure, and being pragmatic. With the average worker in the mining industry earning $100,000 or more, it's not hard to see why a management career in this industry is an excellent path to pursue. Click To Tweet Both qualifications are incredibly useful in the mining industry, and a double diploma has the potential to accelerate your earning ability in the mining sphere, where the average worker earns $100,000 per year or more. These qualifications are equally as helpful to those already working in the mining industry as it is to those wanting to join it. So, what’s the next step? Careers in the mining industry The mining industry’s sheer scale means there are dozens of career paths associated with it in Australia. Creating and commissioning an open-cut mine is estimated to cost at least $500 million (and usually far more). This represents an enormous investment, and it takes many years to recover start-up costs before making a profit. That means a lot of skilled workers with a diverse range of specialties are required. Truck drivers, riggers, excavators, crane operators and maintenance technicians play a pivotal role ‘on the tools’, while there’s a host of supervisory and management positions that require filling too. Workers who have spent time in more labour-intensive mining jobs, and who develop a real connection to the industry, see the advantages of transitioning to careers in the project or construction management sphere. Some do so to capitalise on their experience, create a work/family life balance, or because heavy manual labour is no longer an attractive option. Getting qualified in management at a diploma level is an essential prerequisite for these roles. The College for Adult Learning offers integrated diploma courses, with learning coaches and mining industry experts available to help. Online courses can be undertaken at the students’ own pace, 24/7, in order to maximise career potential. Project Management and Building Construction Management qualifications are helpful for opening doors to senior roles in one of our country’s great industries. Getting a double diploma in both disciplines gives employers more reason to consider you for relevant roles and promotion pathways. Although mining activity is mostly tied to resource prices, even ‘slow’ periods are incredibly important to Australia’s financial fortunes. Iron ore exports alone are worth roughly $100 billion every year to our economy. It’s a large scale, high-stakes industry which sets platinum standards for employees in return for good wages and career prospects. Project managers are at the pinnacle of these opportunities. As such, project managers and construction managers in mining, require sound communication and leadership skills, a first-rate ability to plan major projects involving thousands of employees, a solid understanding of workplace OHS procedures, attention to detail, and more. Overseeing projects which may require billions of dollars in infrastructure investment brings a unique level of pressure. Making decisions under such time and financial constraints come with the territory, so a solid understanding of finance is critical. All these skills start with formal qualifications such as a Diploma of Project Management (BSB50820) or Building and Construction Management, even if you’ve already gained experience in the mining industry. AIPM-Endorsed Diploma CAL has received endorsement for our Diploma of Project Management (BSB50820) and Diploma of Project Management (specialising in Construction) (BSB50820) courses from the Australian Institute of Project Management (AIPM), the premier, longest-serving body for project management in Australia. Having passed a rigorous review by AIPM auditors, adding an AIPM-endorsed diploma to your repertoire demonstrates your commitment to project management professional development and the elevation of industry practices. How to get into the mining industry More than 230,000 Australians work in the mining industry, a figure that’s increased by 4.6% in the past five years. That represents almost 2% of the entire Australian workforce, which gives you an idea of its’ importance to the broader economy. In the next five years, that workforce is expected to grow by a further 20,000, so there is still plenty of employment opportunities going. At entry-level, you’re more likely to be engaged in roles that don’t involve fly-in fly-out (FIFO) work, as mining companies tend to employ more experienced workers at these sites. Most entry-level vacancies are found in regional operations and can involve long-term relocation to work on-site. In the next 5 years, the mining workforce is expected to grow by a further 20,000 roles. Click To Tweet Getting qualifications in fields like civil, electrical or mechanical engineering is a definite advantage, as is most trades. There are also many types of ‘tickets’, or licenses and training qualifications available, in more specific areas of mining. However, these can be very expensive and possibly better undertaken once you’ve secured a job. Like any industry, establishing contacts within mining (and maintaining them) is an excellent way to hear of any opportunities as soon as they arise. Recruitment and labour-hire companies can also help provide advice on your career into mining, specific to your situation. Gaining a foot in the door in the best start to get as much experience as you can in the various aspect of mining. How to Upskill and Achieve a Qualification When Working FIFO Many employers offer short or long-term work placements for potential employees who are undertaking study, to give them a first-hand look at the industry for which they have a real passion. Getting the right qualifications can allow you to specialise in other aspects of the mining industry, such as transport infrastructure, building inspection, or health and safety fields. A double diploma in Project Management or Building Construction Management sets you on the path to these and many other specialties within the mining industry. The College for Adult Learning’s online diploma courses let you organise study around other commitments, with the bonus of achieving qualifications that are recognised Australia-wide. A day in the life of a mining project manager Think of the project or construction manager as the ringmaster of a fast-paced, dynamic, high-stakes arena. They are, by definition, the critical point of contact for everyone working on or off-site. They plan, direct, and execute almost every level of operations. Although delegation is an essential aspect of the role, the buck ultimately stops with the project or construction manager. They are responsible for adherence to strict building regulations, liaising with architects and engineers, maintaining quality control, and possibly supervising multiple sites. Therefore, it makes sense that ‘hands-on’ experience in the mining industry is of enormous benefit to succeeding as a manager. A well-rounded project manager will understand the day-to-day challenges from multiple points of view. They will have the respect of their team because they possess the qualifications, experience, and ability to keep an eye on the ‘bigger picture’. Lay the foundations for a study path to the best jobs in the mining industry Laying the foundations for a leadership role in mining can open many doors, offer excellent financial rewards and almost limitless opportunities in mining.Like any project, beginning with the end in mind is crucial to success. Set a long-term goal for where you are heading and work backwards from the future to where you are now. Then plan out a study path that will get you there for the best value and in the shortest time. Take advantage of career and learning coaching to assist you in making the best choices for you. Selecting the right diploma qualification for you will make for a strong beginning for your future success in the mining industry. Your Career in Construction Management Do you want to learn more about construction management skills employers demand, emerging job roles and salaries, and recent industry insights?  Discover your career in construction management.  CONSTRUCTION MANAGEMENT CAREER PAGE

How To Get A Job From A Business Diploma

Every day across Australia, about 2.3 million businesses engage in the marketplace. Almost 900,000 of these employ at least one person, apart from the owner. All these businesses are trying to carve a niche and profit in a competitive market. Many businesses will also require a manager with business qualifications to succeed. It doesn’t matter if you’ve invented the best widget ever – without the knowledge to market and sell your goods or services (which you can attain through a qualification), you won’t get very far. Business diploma outcomes The long-term value of the Diploma of Business (Leadership) (BSB50120) means that you don’t need to set aside four years (part-time) and an average of nearly $50,000 to complete a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree to succeed in the marketplace. Online diplomas in business, business operations (and administration), and leadership management can be undertaken in less time than an MBA, for a fraction of the price. You can complete the diploma at your own pace, but most importantly, you’ll be job-ready from the moment you graduate. As a bonus, the list of jobs you qualify for will be virtually endless. What doors will a business diploma open for me? The demand for graduates with business-related diplomas is high. For example, hundreds of retail store manager jobs are vacant in Australia at any given time. The average salary is $60,000 and a business diploma or business operations diploma is a great starting point. A personal assistant can expect an average annual salary of $72,000 – a smart way to see a solid return on the qualification investment. A role such as business development manager attracts salaries over $100,000, well above the average wage. By completing your Diploma of Business (Leadership) (BSB50120) before or after you commence work in a related field, you open the door to hundreds of career opportunities. By studying online, you can be qualified after just 12 months, while getting all the support you need. These benefits are available at less than a tenth of the average price of an MBA, plus you’re job-ready far earlier. Download our FREE 'Your Career in Administration and Operations' Guide Find the latest information in our eBook about a career in administration and operations, including current job opportunities, skills you need, salary information and more. DOWNLOAD MY FREE GUIDE Are business diplomas valuable in today’s job market? In 2019, ASIC reported an 11.2% increase in companies entering administration. Even though opportunities vary, today’s marketplace is far more disparate and complicated than ever. For example, the retail market (which employs almost 1.3 million Australians) is having a tough time. Given this environment, imagine how valuable a Diploma of Business (Operations) (BSB50120) could be in the long term. The College for Adult Learning’s online diplomas offer real-world case studies, giving you the skills to identify and act on problems and opportunities. A business administrator oversees all aspects of an organisation’s work, from hiring, budgets, human resources, training, and overseeing rosters. The diploma’s value is in imparting creative thinking skills that can overcome the typical challenges facing all types of industries. The business diploma outcomes are positive in that you’ll be job-ready quicker and won’t risk being overqualified for positions that don’t require a degree. Remember that the value of your business or business operations diploma will help you enter the workforce at a higher wage bracket. Your higher income can even help pay for further study later on if you desire. The time for leadership is now A LinkedIn survey discovered that almost 70% of Australian and New Zealand human resources leaders say it’s difficult to fill leadership positions. In most circumstances, they couldn’t see the situation improving before a year at the earliest. There’s a gap in the market for good leaders and a leadership management diploma offers a great starting point to help overcome this hurdle in the workforce. Leadership management diploma outcomes The leadership management diploma outcomes are both valuable and varied. You’ll learn the ins and outs of business protocols and processes and better understand how to promote productivity. All businesses benefit from having better leaders, whether the workplace has two or 2,000 employees. You can make it easier and more convenient by learning these skills online. Once completed, a Diploma of Leadership Management (BSB50420) can be your ticket to a valuable and satisfying role in helping shape the workplace of the future. Undertaking two of the three courses (Business, Business Operations or Leadership Management) as a double diploma can have advantages beyond the sum of their parts. Ultimately, you get to choose your diploma(s) based on the time you have available, where your interests lie, and where you want to start and progress in the workforce. The choice is flexible and entirely yours – and that’s the most valuable outcome. The BSB training package has undergone a review and overhaul from PWC and AISC. In October 2020, the new Diploma of Business (Operations) (BSB50120) course was announced, superseding and expanding on the older Diploma of Business Administration (BSB50415). The Diploma of Business (Operations) (BSB50120) focuses on business operations, particularly key transferable skills in business administration, finance and communication, to create a more holistic and future-focused business qualification. Learn more about the Diploma of Business (Operations) (BSB50120) here. Match Your Strengths to the Right Diploma

How to be a Successful Leader

Leaders of the modern world in are required to be more aware and involved with their company, their employees, and their processes than ever before. To be a successful leader, you must ensure you provide balance to the personal and professional lives of your employees and that your workplace is a pleasant place to be, all while trying to run a successful business. Whether you are a CEO, a manager, or a supervisor, you are looked to by your staff as a role model for how they should behave. Leaders must lead by example and demonstrate the behaviours and attitudes that they wish to see reflected in their staff. To many, it might sound like an impossible task to lead a group of people, hoping they will create a harmonious and productive team. While difficult, it is not impossible. There are several things a successful leader can do to guarantee they provide their staff with every opportunity to be happy and constructive in their jobs. What's your Management Trajectory? Are you wondering how far away you are from your next promotion? Take our quiz to assess your management career pathway. GO TO QUIZ A healthy work/life balance Maintaining a healthy work/life balance for your employees will help to give them a greater sense of control in their lives. Nowadays, employees are looking to feel like their life is more balanced. If they can achieve this, it will make them less stressed, more productive, and able to compartmentalise their work lives from their home lives. Leaders who make balance a priority will find a higher rate of employee retention, increased loyalty, mutual respect for one another, and a higher quality of knowledge. What are some of the best ways to create a healthy work/life balance? 1. Access to exercise: It is proven that one of the best ways to relieve stress is through physical activity. Having the availability of an onsite gym is beneficial to both employees and leadership staff. It encourages everyone to be more active, and in turn, they will feel relaxed, and productivity level will increase. If you are unable to provide an onsite gym, partnering with a gym close by and offering discounted memberships is a great way to encourage your staff to get active. 2. Flexibility for working parents: Parents often find it difficult to return to work after having children. They worry about missing the small moments like mealtimes together and school drop off or pick up. Policies for working parents make their lives much easier. Whether you allow them to work from home or work only during school hours, they will thank you for the opportunity to be a present figure in their family’s lives. They will feel more positive about coming to work knowing they will be able to pick their kids up from school and spend quality time with their family. 3. Remote working: Offices are no longer defined by the four walls and cubicles that they once were. Nowadays, people can work from most places and still be useful in the same way. With communication tools like instant messaging and project management tools like Slack and Trello, employees can stay up-to-date on all their tasks, regardless of where they are. The flexibility gives employees independence and freedom that is appreciated in the modern working environment. 4. Office half days: Offering an incentive that positively benefits your employees is another great way leaders can push motivation and productivity forward. It may take some time to hone the exact details but offering your staff a half-day off every week or every fortnight, with the condition that all work is completed, is a good way of rewarding them for all the effort they are putting into your business. 5. Trust your employees: Ultimately your employees want to do the best job they can do at work and home. By allowing them space, flexibility, and opportunity to find that balance for themselves, they will become more efficient, valuable, and constructive. A welcoming workplace environment Where someone works is just as important and has as much of an influence on a business, as how hard they work. The physical environment that your staff are working in will greatly impact their mood, their productivity, and their motivation. As a leader, if you ask your employees to work in a boring and unstimulating environment, they will feel less inclined to complete their tasks to a high standard and will likely feel bored in their work. Facebook is known as one of the most desirable places to work as an employee. Culture, workplace perks, and a collaborative environment are only some of the things that have earned the tech giant this title. Located in Silicon Valley, the Facebook campus is abundant with open plan workspaces, making collaboration and discussion with colleagues easy and something they are encouraged to do. Additionally, the campus offers an array of perks for employees. All employees are provided with free meals, dental care, haircuts, laundry services, and on-site health check-ups — almost anything you can name, Facebook offer. Understandably, most businesses do not have the same means as Facebook to be providing the same work perks. However, even leaders of small businesses can adapt some of Facebook’s policies and make them applicable to their companies. Offering staff free food, whether it’s a meal or snacks throughout the week is a great reward for hard work and shows that you appreciate their efforts. If you are looking to be a successful leader in the present or the future, your goal should be to create a work environment that is pleasant, stimulating, and will not cause your staff to overwork and burn out. Emerging Leaders and career progression Leaders come in all shapes and sizes across all industries. Modern leaders should be looking to hone their skills and experience throughout their career. If you try to achieve these things, there is a good chance you will one day progress into a leadership role. You may love your current job and all the perks that come along with it; but have you considered the additional benefits that come from working on moving forward in your career? 1. Financial gain: Most promotions will come with an increased salary offer. The more seniority you have and the more important your job becomes, the higher the likelihood that you will be offered better financial compensation for the work you are doing. 2. Variety: When your career begins to shift and change and move forward, you are more likely to encounter tasks and projects that may be unfamiliar. Successful leaders take this as a good opportunity to learn how to manage and handle new situations. 3. Skills: You will already have an established set of skills from your education and early years of experience in your industry. The further up the career ladder you climb, the more skills and experience you are going to gain and develop. Work hard alongside your staff and continue to hone your skills. By doing this, you gain more knowledge, and your employees never feel like they are in it alone because you are right there working hard with them. One of the best things you can do to ensure you are on track to becoming a successful leader is to have a strong educational foundation to stand on. Investing in emerging leadership skills Whether you are looking to move into, or are currently working, in the construction industry, human resources, project management, or similar areas, you will benefit from further education. Gaining a leadership diploma will show prospective employers that you have clear career goals, a determined and forward-thinking personality, and a drive to succeed – qualities that are extremely valuable to any business. Leadership boundaries are being challenged for the future and leadership is no longer as linear as it once was. It is no longer about ordering people around and waiting while others complete the work for you. Leadership is becoming collaborative; it is about sharing the workload and encouraging your staff through leading by example. Listen to your staff, have compassion and empathy for their problems and hardships, and discuss and implement strategies that can help them solve those issues, while still maintaining their work responsibilities. It is advantageous for a company to seek a better work/life balance and a more welcoming work environment. On top of this, you want leaders to have a strong base of knowledge and experience to draw upon. A diploma qualification will reassure your clients and staff that you are the right leader for the job at hand. Remind yourself that your staff are a priority. You can’t do the work without them, and your staff will not do their best work if the circumstances aren’t suitable. Listen to what they need, provide it to the best of your abilities, and your staff will consider you to be a timeless, fair, and very successful leader.  

The Changing Face of Workplace Diversity

The changing face of workplace diversity is a sensitive but necessary topic that all businesses need to discuss when they are considering employing new staff. Workplaces look significantly different now when compared to a decade or so ago, largely due to the move toward workplace diversity. This is ultimately necessary for reflecting today’s social climate. What is workplace diversity? When people hear the term “workplace diversity” minds often wander straight to the gender gap discussions of recent years. With the equal pay movement continuing to gain strength, the message about including women at equal standing in the workplace is a global concern. While the equal treatment of women and men in the workplace is incredibly important, it is not the only way to define diversity in your workplace. Diversity in the workplace is the notion that companies are open to hiring employees from a wide range of backgrounds; regardless of race, religion, or culture. However, workplace diversity can also be hiring people from different educational backgrounds, personality types, and experience. Effectively, the overarching principle is that there should be no bias when it comes to the hiring of potential employees, and companies should equally compare all candidates. The importance is placed on your staff feeling valued. Rather than hiring someone of a specific background or race, you are hiring the person who is the most appropriate candidate for the role. Australia leads the workplace diversity scorecard Ideally, companies should be aiming to recognise employees’ ideas, perspectives, and unique qualities. For decades, Australia has been considered a diverse and multi-cultural society. As of 2011, 46% of Australia’s 21.5 million population were either born overseas or had at least one parent born overseas. When these people enter the workforce they bring with them immense diversity from a range of cultures and backgrounds. In 2012 Forbes conducted a study analysing varying elements of diversity from age, gender, education, income, migration, and more, to determine the top 50 countries with the highest amount of workplace diversity. The top five ranked countries were Norway, New Zealand, Iceland, Australia, and Switzerland. After deep analysis, these five countries were found to be the most diverse when it came to their employees. At the other end of the scale, the lowest five countries include Poland, Pakistan, Hungary, Turkey, and, the Czech Republic. Of the 50 countries ranked, these five showed the lowest amount of diversity in their workplace environments. In the middle of the spectrum, Indonesia ranked 22nd, followed by Germany, Belgium, Thailand, and the United Arab Emirates. While it is important to consider the customs and economic standing of these countries when analysing the rankings, it is ultimately the individual companies that decide who they will hire, and for what reason. The key for a modern company is to see diversity in the workplace as crucial, not only for individual development of your employees but for the benefit and growth of your organisation as a whole. Download our FREE HR Career, Salary & Course Guide! Find valuable information on why you should become a HR manager, which HR department suits you, a detailed salary guide, course breakdown and more! DOWNLOAD MY FREE GUIDE Five ways you win from having a diverse workplace 1. Mutual respect among employees Working with a variety of people fosters respect among co-workers who start to understand and empathise with each other and their differences. Colleagues can acknowledge the varied strengths and weaknesses that each person brings to the team. 2. It grows your talent pool Embracing a wider range of applicants will increase the likelihood of attracting people with a wide range of talents and abilities that will help your company grow and thrive. 3. Improves employee performance There is a greater chance that your employees will feel comfortable in an environment that they deem to be inclusive. If they don’t feel singled out or alone in the workplace they are more likely to feel encouraged to complete their best work and achieve greater goals. 4. Increased creativity People who come from all walks of life think differently to each other. With a diverse group of minds working together to collaborate on ideas and strategies for your company, you will generate out of the box ideas that will inspire each other, and your clients. 5. Creates a positive reputation for your company A company that openly hires people with diversity in mind is looked upon favourably by the public. People will consider you to be a good employer who treats staff equally and with respect. Generating this positive reputation will attract more staff applying to work for you because they deem your business a great place to work. How to stand out in a diverse workplace Diversity is important, but you need to have the skills that will act as your professional foundation. If you are looking to work for a progressive company that is hiring a diverse workforce, upskilling might be the thing that gets you over the line. Completing an online diploma in management, leadership, human resources, or many other options could give you the skills needed to help you land the jump into a multi-cultural environment. Having these extra skills will make you an attractive candidate for anyone looking to hire. Although the workforce looks different now from what it did ten or more years ago, there are substantial benefits from employing diversely. Soon it will be considered normal for companies across the globe to actively recruit people from all cultures, genders, backgrounds, ages, and ethnicities to drive their business into the future. The face of the workforce might be changing, but it is certainly changing for the better. Your Career in Human Resources Do you want to learn more about HR skills employers demand, emerging job roles and salaries, and recent industry insights?  Discover your career in human resources.  HUMAN RESOURCES CAREER PAGE

9 Questions To Engage Employees

Every good manager wants tips to engage and empower employees. After all, as we become aware of the cost of an unengaged workforce, it becomes clear that managers of all kinds must redefine their traditional roles. Globally, we see a leadership emphasis on the manager as coach. Good coaches are competent questioners. Questions help to initiate both thinking and action. No longer are employees satisfied with glib management phrases. To be successful and effective leaders, they must be active thinkers, doers, and listeners. You want to hook their minds, not bore them into disengagement and disinterest. An engaged and empowered employee can lift the culture in every workplace because they are motivated to work with passion and they feel a profound connection with their company. They drive innovation and move the company forward, and on average, have a 51% higher productivity rate. These are nine questions to engage employees and initiate positive coaching strategies to create an engaging environment at work. Your job as a coach is to use appropriate questions to activate each of these strategies. Question 1: Would you be willing to receive some feedback right now? Providing only an annual performance review is no longer effective, as employees prefer regular, specific and frequent feedback. Feedback is most valuable when it is both immediate and corrective. When giving feedback, first ask permission to give feedback. An employee’s agreement increases their willingness to hear the feedback and participate in discussion and corrections. An appropriate opening question is: “Would you be willing to receive some feedback right now?” Question 2: Have you been seeking support and feedback from your colleagues? Create a culture of 360º team feedback where everyone is willing to give and receive feedback. Once teams are trained to deliver feedback, they can start with question one from the first strategy above. As a leader, you can encourage participation with this question: “Have you been seeking support and feedback from your colleagues?” Question 3: What support do you need from me to push you to your next level? Bored employees are more likely to become disengaged – they need challenges to grow. That’s why it’s critical that you support and push employees to their attainable limits. Ask this question to get the ball rolling: “What support do you need from me to push you to your next level?” Question 4: How would you do this differently? Listening is an essential part of coaching. When employees feel that their opinion is respected and valued, they’re far more likely to be engaged and push harder. Be open to employee ideas and opinions.  An ideal question here is: “How would you do this differently/more efficiently/more effectively?” Question 5: What can you learn from your colleagues that will help you grow in your role? Every employee brings a diversity of experience, strengths, weaknesses, and points of view to a work environment. Tapping into well of knowledge will engender an engaged, innovative and productive workforce. Facilitate this by encouraging learning from each other. Encourage learning with the following question: “What can you learn from your colleagues that will help you grow in your role?” Question 6: Would you be willing to share your solution with the rest of the team? Giving feedback and supporting constant improvement can become critical to instilling confidence. Research on the power of recognition shows it’s best when it is immediate, specific and appropriate to the individual. Your mantra should be ‘recognise progress’. Acknowledgement can be quite simple without it appearing to be glib praise. Try this: “Would you be willing to share your solution with the rest of the team?” Question 7: What support do you need to get this project back on track? Leaders are sometimes tempted to take over jobs if they see the pace slowing down or going off track. However, this is only ever a short-term solution. Instead of taking the task off your employees hands, show them how to handle the situation by offering guidance and letting them do their jobs. Ask: “What support do you need from other team members and me to get this assignment back on track?” Question 8: What would you suggest as the appropriate correction for the future? Never leave a mistake or a failure unhandled. By doing this, you lower standards and performance expectations. Always debrief mistakes, initially from the employee’s point of view and then as an exercise in correcting for the future. Handling mistakes and failures fairly and clearly is invaluable. How to initiate this: “What and where do you consider it went wrong, and what would you suggest as the appropriate correction for the future?” Question 9: What do you want to achieve and how can you make it work for you? If you hope to get everyone moving in the same direction, you need to show them where to go. Goals are the clearest way to do this. Encourage each employee to create personal goals that help them develop and further their careers, as well as contribute to the benchmarks of the team and the organisation as a whole. A clear goals map is the tool that can get you there. Start with this question: “What do you want to achieve, and how can you make it work for you, your team and the organisation?” Your Career in Leadership and Management Do you want to learn more about leadership and management skills you need to be a good leader, emerging job roles and salaries, and recent industry insights?  Discover your career in leadership and management.  LEADERSHIP AND MANAGEMENT CAREER PAGE

The Benefits of Building Strong Workplace Relationships with your Employees

The question to ask here is, WHY is it important to build strong relationships with your employees? After all, the boss is called that for a reason – shouldn’t a leader give instruction and watch their workers take action? The short answer is ‘no’. Ken Kesey once observed: “You don’t lead by pointing and telling people some place to go. You lead by going to that place and making a case”. Best known for his novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, the American author was expressing the key to leadership, especially in the workplace. In reality, almost 70% of bosses find it difficult to communicate with their staff. That is why fostering a relationship with your employees is so crucial. So, how should you go about it? What are the repercussions if the relationship between the two is merely superficial and subservient?   Set a confident example Leadership is something that workers expect, demand and deserve. Being confident and taking your leadership role seriously will create positivity among employees. Ensure that you give feedback, both good and constructive. In the hands of a good leader, constructive criticism is perceived as encouraging improvement. The truth can be difficult but gilding the lily or downplaying serious issues erodes trust over time. Look to other areas where you can demonstrate confidence and respect. Even your dress sense as a boss is an underrated leadership asset.While Silicon Valley has loosened worldwide attitudes towards workplace attire a good leader will dress at least slightly more formally than their employees, the reason being it sets the boss apart and creates a subliminal air of authority. Holding a relevant qualification in workplace management or leadership will also set you apart and encourage your workers to respect your abilities.   Be inclusive and fair If there’s one skill that good leadership is built upon, it’s quality communication. Rather than constant emails or teleconferences, it is better to get out and about among the troops. There’s simply no substitute for face-to-face communication. In fact, meetings held in-person can generate an average of 30% more ideas than those conducted remotely. Equal engagement is important too. Nothing undermines confidence in the workplace quicker than favouritism, real or perceived. Good leaders think twice if they notice that some workers are more demanding of their time. Not only can that time be spent more productively, but it can feed perceptions of bias among staff. Download our FREE 'Your Career in Leadership & Management' Guide Find the latest information in our eBook about a career in leadership and management, including current job opportunities, soft skills you need, salary information and more. DOWNLOAD MY FREE GUIDE Leaders are every workplace’s model of success for the staff they manage and are held to a greater standard. Leading by example, while remaining relatable is an invaluable skill. It’s worth remembering that 70% of employees feel disengaged from the business they work for. Your willingness to network within the workplace is critical to business longevity. Providing workers with diverse opportunities prepares them for the next step in their career, and sends a powerful message of confidence in their ability to grow. Promoting competent workers results in everyone feeling more confident in the leaders who do so wisely. In turn, the business will grow, and employees will want to stay and share the journey.   What’s in it for me? A good workplace leader can improve job satisfaction, loyalty and productivity in employees. These are the ‘building blocks’ that encourage collaboration between colleagues and promote a sense of comradery. A successful business is far more than just the sum of its’ parts. Close friendships in the workplace are proven to increase productivity by almost 50%, highlighting the value of social connections in all areas of life. Fostering friendship at work also makes employees more resilient in times of stress. A business-related diploma can impart effective tools to use for a leader who wants to promote and nurture these type of workplace relationships. There are many benefits to building strong workplace relationships with employees. Remember, as the boss you are also entitled to enjoy where you work, and benefit from the sense of community a connected workplace provides for all.  

What business managers need to know about effective employee performance reviews

A busy manager dealing with the daily cut-and-thrust of business can inadvertently disconnect from the people they need most, making performance reviews an opportunity for effective engagement. In the words of Henry Ford, ‘Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success’. Working together is exactly what a performance review is all about. Effective performance reviews allow both parties to sit down and get an understanding of where the business is heading, and more importantly, how the employee can contribute, as well as an opportunity to address issues of under-performance, and areas for improvement. Allocating one-on-one time with employees is an implicit statement of confidence in their value to the business.   Be mindful of setting the right environment Remember when performance reviews were limited to senior executives of larger companies, often conducted by members of a board? Times have changed and most employees these days are given formal evaluations, at least once a year. Then why does the mere mention of such a process elicit unfounded fears from some staff? Here are a few ideas to counteract this reaction: Ensure an interruption-free, non-confrontational environment. Always give plenty of notice. If appropriate, allow a friend or colleague to sit in on the meeting. Make the employee feel as comfortable and at ease as possible.   Celebrate, then recalibrate People love to hear about it when they’re doing well and even ‘intangibles’, like a happy disposition, can be of value to a business. Point out an employee’s strengths in the first instance. What have they achieved? How have they improved since the previous review? How do their skills make them valuable to the team? It’s smart to start any meeting on a positive tone, and performance reviews are no different. Then ‘recalibrate’ by addressing areas for improvement, setting realistic goals, and adjusting the employees’ performance measures to meet these goals.   Download our FREE 'Your Career in Leadership & Management' Guide Find the latest information in our eBook about a career in leadership and management, including current job opportunities, soft skills you need, salary information and more. DOWNLOAD MY FREE GUIDE Remember the adage – one mouth, two ears Use your two ears to listen carefully to employee feedback. There’s no point in setting a strategic direction for the company if those charged with the day-to-day machinations aren’t on the same page. Ask open-ended questions and discourage ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answers.   Tips for managing the tough discussions If under-performance has helped initiate the performance review, it can be a stressful time for both manager and employee. It’s normal for a manager to feel slightly uncomfortable raising difficult issues with colleagues, even subordinates. There are many ways to approach tough discussions, such as: Be clear about what’s expected in the role, and how the staff member is falling short. Speak English – using terms such as ‘KPI’ or ‘ROI’ might be common shorthand for some, but that kind of jargon can be confusing and confronting to a person who is already under stress. Identify what needs to improve, how it can be improved, and by when. Setting a deadline, and a pre-determined follow-up meeting date is critical to motivation and success.   Always look on the bright side An evaluation gives both sides an opportunity to be heard. If a staff member is at a point of frustration, then the performance review allows them a chance to explain themselves and understand what’s required. A review can even foster a sense of inclusion that, without a one-on-one discussion, would not be possible to the same degree. Think of an evaluation as an opportunity to better get to know an employee you don’t get to spend much time with. After all, creating time to invest in staff is one of the smartest moves any organisation can make. Keeping valuable staff rewarded, motivated and loyal creates a culture that will ultimately benefit the business, even if the ‘bottom line’ can’t quantify it. Effective performance reviews will bring sustainable results to your business. Learn to manage them well, and your employees will even start to look forward to them. Consider developing your business communication and management skills with a Diploma of Leadership and Management (BSB50420), or Diploma of Business (Leadership) (BSB50120).  

How to Avoid Burnout for You and Your Staff

Perhaps you’ve been there — work is overwhelming, help is limited, and before you know it, your drive and determination have diminished. Regardless of whether it’s you or your employees you’re trying to protect from burnout, doing so is of vital importance to your business. Not only are burnt out employees unengaged, but their lack of productivity costs you money. According to Medibank Private, work-related stress costs Australia AU$25 billion per year. The causes of employee burnout typically fall into three general categories. 1. Personality factors. The people most likely to burn out quickly are over-achievers, perfectionists, and pessimists. 2. An imbalance between work and home life. If one or the other is taking over an employee’s life, work will suffer, and burnout will ensue. 3. Work-related stress. An overwhelming workload, increased job demands without commensurate benefits, a lack of recognition or feedback, and a loss of faith in leadership can all contribute to burnout. According to recent studies, the leading causes of workplace stress are: Workload – 46% People issues – 28% Juggling work / personal lives – 20% Lack of job security – 6% The leading causes of workplace stress are workload (46%), people issues (28%), juggling work-life balance (20%), and lack of job security (6%). Click To Tweet The Catastrophic Effects of Burnout Not only are burned out employees tough to deal with for customers, they can also become a toxic presence in your office. As they begin to show symptoms of burnout, staff begin to transfer their stress (and work) to others. Some of the more common signs of burnout include increased anxiety, irritability, weight loss or gain, frequent absences, and susceptibility to illness. What You Can Do: Take Action! If you’re noticing signs of employee burnout, take immediate steps to prevent it from continuing. Here are six ways to stop burnout: 1. Listen and seek feedback As an employer, you have a duty of care to ensure your employees are respected and heard. At first, it might need to be an anonymous process. Seek regular feedback from every employee and act on this feedback wherever possible. 2. Provide functional equipment Equipment performance will reflect poorly on the employee’s production and the failure of management to recognise the need to upgrade can create an air of helplessness. Frustration with equipment can be one of the first symptoms of burnout and solving this problem can effectively alleviate work-related stressors. 3. Be fair Nothing causes burnout quicker than watching someone else receive preferential treatment or get credit for the wrong reasons. Even worse is unfairness that seems arbitrary. Pay inequality, random promotions, capricious recognition—all these things can create animosity or a sense of despair in an employee. They’re made worse by the fact that, in most cases, the employee must bottle up their feelings of injustice. 4. Empower and motivate employees For employees who feel as though they have no say in organisational decision-making, burnout can be a natural or even expected consequence. Change that situation by: Challenging your team members Stoking a passion for the company’s vision Giving clear opportunities for advancement Develop employee skills and knowledge with an online diploma Applying the same measuring criteria to everyone Getting out of the way, and letting staff do their work 5. Be positive and have fun Employees who enjoy coming to work will burn out far less frequently than those who loathe their job. Why not build a positive work environment for your employees? Celebrating the completion of projects, having regular team activities, making meetings friendly and inviting – can all boost morale tenfold. 6. Recognise success No matter what they tell you, every employee wants to feel needed. An unexpected pat on the back or recognition in front of peers for a job well done can be a welcome motivational boost. Research has discovered that 71% of respondents believe that appreciation by a direct supervisor has the most impact on employee engagement in their organisation. Prevent your chances of burnout A burnt-out employer can equally contribute to employee burnout. Recognising the signs in yourself is just as important as identifying them in others. If the thought of needing to change everything to make it work for your employees is just another job you don’t have time for, then it could be time for your reboot. Successful entrepreneurs recommend that you keep your vision in sight, take time out for yourself, and gather a group of likeminded business colleagues around you so you can get support. Perhaps a career refresh is needed. There are online diplomas that give you the benefit of new peer networks while upskilling yourself for career advancement opportunities. Looking after yourself can be the most critical decision you make for both your employees and your business. Avoid burnout in your business by educating yourself and your staff, recognising the symptoms early, and acting when necessary.

How to Foster Life-Long Relationships With Clients

A rewarding part of many businesses is forming life-long relationships with clients. Here are eight ways you can foster quality business relationships that last. 1. Ensure quality client care The best way to ensure life-long love from your clients is by providing the best quality care and service. Commit to giving them the best treatment that consistently exceeds their needs and expectations. Create a culture of excellence in your business that your customers can rely upon from the first interaction. 2. Upskill your staff to upskill client expectations Encourage everyone in your organisation to participate in regular professional and personal development. There are many training resources to access as in-house or off-site experiences. Allowing your team a few hours of training each year can be rewarding for the business as well as the person. Remember: your staff will make the biggest overall impact on whether your clients feel valued in your practice. Train staff in customer service basics such as communication, conflict resolution, time management, telephone and reception manners, and general professionalism. Conduct regular team-building sessions that involve building up and increasing a variety of skills. Remember to schedule activities just for fun, such as a night out bowling or a celebration lunch. 3. Offer partnerships and new services to clients To keep your offering fresh and engaging for long-term clients, seek out partnerships with like-minded organisations. Promote new services or special offers to your clients regularly. Trialling a new service is a good way to test if your community wants you to add it as a permanent offering. 4. Implement a loyalty program for long-standing customers Research third-party apps and loyalty card programs that keep your business front of mind with your customers. Effective loyalty ideas include: One free ‘come and try’ session a year Book ten sessions/buy ten products and get one free Earn points to redeem on products Monthly loyalty member specials Refer a friend and get a gift card The key is to keep the program simple and manageable. It needs to add value to your customers and encourage repeat business. Download our FREE 'Your Career in Leadership & Management' Guide Find the latest information in our eBook about a career in leadership and management, including current job opportunities, soft skills you need, salary information and more. DOWNLOAD MY FREE GUIDE   5. Ask for feedback and conduct customer surveys If your clients have had good experiences using your services and products, they will welcome the opportunity to give you good feedback. Here are some good ways to go about it: Encourage and ask for feedback on your social media or review platforms. Hand out feedback cards with check and comment boxes to let you know if you are on track. SMS clients after an appointment or large purchase, with an invitation to give a rating out of 10 or select a happy or sad face to send back. Send out a customer survey with more detailed questions to your email database once a year. 6. Ask for client referrals and say thank you Just as asking for feedback is important, so is asking satisfied clients for referrals. Most likely, if they are happy with your service, they are referring people to you anyway. Let them know you appreciate the business by sending them a simple thank you card, gift card or complimentary service or product. 7. Stay in touch with regular client communications Even the happiest client needs to be reminded that your organisation exists. Depending on the product or service your business offers, customers may not purchase from you regularly. Therefore, you need to keep in touch so that when they do need you again, they will not hesitate to book an appointment, jump online or visit your store. Effective ways to communicate are with an email newsletter, on social media, mailing a monthly special and by SMS. 8. Celebrate important customer milestones A great way to show your clients you remember and care about them is to keep track of their birthday and anniversary date with your company. Send them an email to celebrate these events with a special offer. If you have a company milestone coming up, let your clients know about that as well. Become a client-satisfaction expert A business manager or leader who can foster life-long relationships with clients is highly valued in any organisation. These relationship skills will be gained with experience. However, the fastest way to secure the confidence in management is with a qualification like the Diploma of Leadership and Management (BSB50420) or Diploma of Business (Operations) (BSB50120). Take action with the second strategy listed above; always be upskilling. Start on developing your personal and professional skills today. Your Career in Leadership and Management Do you want to learn more about leadership and management skills you need to be a good leader, emerging job roles and salaries, and recent industry insights?  Discover your career in leadership and management.  LEADERSHIP AND MANAGEMENT CAREER PAGE

4 Vital Elements of giving Constructive Feedback

Giving constructive feedback to employees can be a daunting task for managers. Many managers say it is the least favourite part of the position. However, as difficult as it is, being able to do so effectively can have long-lasting results for all involved. Often the employee will be doing many things well and it is only certain specific areas that need to be improved. It is also tempting to let things slide until performance review time rolls around. However, this is not always prudent or desirable. A session of constructive feedback now can save a lengthy and uncomfortable performance review later. By tackling the issue early, you can expect an increase in the performance of the employee, as well as improved interpersonal relationships and a far more productive work environment for everyone. To communicate your ideas constructively, it’s important that you get your message across in a way that isn’t detrimental and find ways to give constructive feedback without being intimidating. Naturally, you want to boost an employee’s self-confidence and work ethic rather than take the wind from their sails. Four Simple Tips to Follow To Give Constructive Feedback Be Specific Get to the point quickly and make sure that you don’t beat around the bush. If you’re vague, your feedback can be misunderstood, and your employee may continue making the same mistakes. Tell your employee the exact instance where they have made a mistake and outline what they can do differently. Prepare notes if necessary with specific examples of the incidents. If it is an interpersonal issue, you can also try role-playing to tackle the issue effectively. If it is operational, perhaps you need to walk them through the correct steps or redo the procedure manual to be clearer. Be Timely Give prompt feedback at the next suitable moment, while the incident is fresh in mind. If you wait too long to give feedback, then the potency will be lost. An immediate response to their action will allow them to associate it with your feedback. This increases the likelihood that they will retain the feedback, take on the learning, and be wary of when they may make the same mistake again. Be Positive For any negative feedback you give, you need to include positive feedback. Approach the criticism in a positive, solution-orientated way and focus on your employee’s strengths. Again, prepare notes about their strengths as well as the areas that need correcting. You want to build self-esteem and encourage on-the-job learning and growth. Agree on what measures will be implemented to support the employee in improving. It can be a good idea to set a review time now for a week or two later, so they have a clear timeframe of your expectations. Reiterate that you are available at any time if they have questions or need further coaching. Be Understanding Discuss with your employee about the source of the mistake and what he or she could have done instead. Work together to figure out whether your employee needs any extra assistance with their job and offer them help where they may need it. You might be surprised by their ideas to improve systems or procedures for everyone. Use this feedback time as a learning opportunity for both you and your employee. Reflecting on constructive feedback When you are competent and willing to provide constructive feedback to your employees, it enables them to work more efficiently to your expectations. It also gives you more insight into how you can improve in managing your employees day-to-day, what additional training they may require, and prompt further thoughts about what you can do to keep them motivated. Perhaps it is also time for a staff function, to implement a staff member of the month scheme or conduct an overall staff satisfaction feedback survey. The best leaders and managers are those who are able to help their team thrive and come into their full potential. Constructive feedback doesn’t need to be a negative thing – when you can follow it up with actionable steps and assistance for the person you can make big changes in their performance and within your company. Next time you find yourself in a position where constructive feedback is necessary, follow our four easy steps to ensure it goes smoothly. A Diploma of Leadership & Management (BSB50420) will harness the interpersonal and practical skills you need to give constructive feedback wisely. Become the very best leader you can be, and propel your career into a management position with our self-paced, online qualification. Speak to one of our Learning Coaches to find out more.

6 Tips for Effective Communication With Employees

One of the most under-appreciated aspects of running a successful business is communication. For your business to be successful, you need strong and effective communication with your employees. When your employees understand your goals and feel like their opinions matter, they’re far more likely to reach their potential and this means an increase in productivity. No matter how your communication is now, there are always ways to improve. Here are six key tips on how you can maintain effective communication with all your employees. Have Open Communication When you have open communication with your employees, it builds trust and makes them feel valued. On the other hand, if you simply delegate tasks and don’t get your employees’ input, they won’t perform at their best. Telling your employees why you need the task done instead of just telling them to do something will bring a greater sense of respect for you as management as well. You can foster open communication by encouraging employees to contribute in meetings, whether that meeting consists of just a few people or a large group. It’s also helpful to set a goal for all your employees to work towards. This builds a team atmosphere where everyone contributes and communicates with each other, instead of having teams working independently.   Ensure that Your Attitude Makes You Approachable Most of our communication is nonverbal, and telling employees they can talk to you means nothing if your body language says otherwise. It’s important to always be conscious of your attitude and what you’re projecting to your employees. If you’re short with them or constantly in a hurry, your employees won’t feel comfortable communicating with you. Focus on maintaining a friendly, positive attitude at all times so that your employees know that they can always talk to you. Download our FREE 'Your Career in Leadership & Management' Guide Find the latest information in our eBook about a career in leadership and management, including current job opportunities, soft skills you need, salary information and more. DOWNLOAD MY FREE GUIDE Be Clear and Concise Effective communicators get to the point and make their messages clear. Your goal should always be to get your message across clearly with as little technical jargon as possible, whether you’re talking to an employee in person or sending an email. When you say too much or use technical terms an employee may not understand, you’re just increasing the odds that there will be a miscommunication. This is one area where keeping it simple is the better option.   Welcome Feedback and Take It Seriously Employee feedback is great for your business. You never know when your employees will notice something that you didn’t – perhaps there’s a flaw in that product that didn’t cross your mind, but was obvious to an employee right away. But to get legitimate employee feedback, you need them to know that they can communicate with you and even critique your ideas freely. That’s why you should be appreciative of their feedback and take it seriously. You want your employees to know that you value their opinions. You may want to implement an anonymous feedback program as well to make sure that your employees feel comfortable giving feedback. Set the Right Culture Communication isn’t some task that you can check off your list. It’s part of your company’s culture, and you’ll be the one to set that culture. There are a few excellent methods to set a culture that emphasises communication. Team huddles for between 10 and 15 minutes at the beginning of a shift get the day started on the right foot. In these huddles, you can go over the plan and goals for the day. It’s also good to talk to employees one on one to see how they’re doing, even employees who don’t report to you directly. A quick meeting with the boss can help keep an employee’s morale high. By doing these steps, you can help ensure that open communication becomes a part of your company’s culture.   Keep Your Employees Updated Regularly All too often, business leaders keep their employees in the dark about what’s going on with the company. This leaves employees feeling like they’re only there to do a job, and it creates a barrier between the management and everyone else. Your employees will feel more connected to the company when you keep them updated about what’s going on. Let them know about the results of projects. Thank and congratulate them for successes, and be honest when something doesn’t go as planned instead of trying to spin it. Effective communication with your employees isn’t hard when you know what to do and you’re willing to make the necessary changes. Take a look at how everyone communicates at your business right now to see where there are areas you can make improvements. Implement any of these tips that you haven’t already been doing and it won’t take long before you’re seeing better communication and higher productivity.   About the author Ryan Bridges is a contributing writer and media specialist for Presentation Training Institute. He regularly produces content for a variety of communication and workplace blogs, based around the challenges of creating effective communication in the workplace.

How Do You Measure Your Team’s Potential?

There is no doubt that measuring your team’s potential and performance is important. It can help to assess training needs, provide meaningful feedback to employees, test training processes, as well as helping learn ways to lead your team more effectively. Talented team members will want feedback to help them grow and improve, particularly within situations where they haven’t performed to the best of their abilities. Managing a team is tricky and while the potential of your team is limitless, there are key valuable metrics that can help you to measure your team’s potential. Measuring team potential by attendance When it comes time to measure your team’s potential, attendance is the most traditional metric. Keeping track of whether your employees show up to work or not can be a good indicator of performance or employee wellbeing. If a team member is consistently leaving early, showing up late, taking an extreme number of sick days or not showing up at all, this usually signifies job dissatisfaction or problems they may need your support in addressing. It’s also important to note that in our modern world of hybrid and remote working, you can still gauge attendance in weekly team meetings or daily standups.  Poor attendance can mean any number of things: lack of employee motivation, burnout, dissatisfaction in a position, or issues at home or with health. Increased amounts of absenteeism can also place extra pressure on other team members, who in turn have to cover the slack. This can result in any number of negative outcomes for the organisation as a whole. If your organisation is understaffed and team members are overworked, it is best to address the issue as it arises to avoid any other employees feeling stressed and to prevent your employees from quitting. Chatting to your absent or late employee is also a great opportunity to show that you care and get to the root of the problem. Measuring team potential by willingness to help An employee’s willingness to help is important when fostering a culture of teamwork, allowing employees to work better together when tackling various tasks as a group. If some team members are constantly putting their hand up for tasks, it proves their willingness and determination for the entire team to succeed. It’s a great metric to measure your team’s potential, as well as individual performance. While it might be difficult to measure helpfulness, it might be easiest to ask yourself, who in your department has been the most helpful to you within the last six months? This can help you pinpoint the tasks in which people enjoy and are constantly putting their hand up for, as well as the employees who are shining the brightest within your team. Measuring team potential by efficiency For a team to be functioning successfully, employees need to be completing their tasks on time. Provided they have been in their position for a substantial period of time, they should have a good handle on their strengths and limitations, as well as the resources available to them. They should know what is expected of them, allowing them to prioritise and get things done as efficiently and effectively as possible. Effective teamwork can be measured in several ways: look for missed deadlines or work that has suffered at the hands of an employee being overworked. If you see a team member clocking excess overtime, you may need to speak to them about their time-management skills, or potentially reducing their workload to increase your team’s productivity. Measuring team potential by initiative While it’s nice when employees complete the tasks asked of them, it’s nicer when they see a need for something and take the steps to complete it on their own. Taking initiative is a definite sign that a team member is satisfied and engaged with the work they are doing, constantly going the extra mile to see that their work is of the highest standard possible. Team members who take initiative can also help you to determine who can adapt and be proactive, which is particularly important for growing businesses that are rapidly changing. While it can be hard to measure initiative as a metric to measure your team’s potential, it helps to look at employees that are constantly looking to better themselves and their work. One example is if a team member is externally studying or conducting courses to refine or improve their skills. Say you work in Human Resources; an employee that takes initiative could be working to acquire a degree on the side. Perhaps they are enrolled in a Diploma of Human Resource Management. This kind of action is exactly the kind of thing that should be rewarded and encouraged within your team, particularly when they are doing things outside of office hours. Measuring team potential by quality of work Perhaps the most crucial metric to measure your team’s potential is the quality of work that is being put out by your team members. Satisfied and engaged employees are likely to perform better at work, completing tasks to their greatest potential. A decline in quality could signal any number of things, which is why it’s a good idea to reward positive achievements by your employees. Highlight the team members that are constantly delivering work to a high standard, proving that you value their potential and contribution to the team. Clear communication will allow everyone to know where they stand, helping you to better achieve the mission, vision and values of the organisation. Download our FREE 'Your Career in Leadership & Management' Guide Find the latest information in our eBook about a career in leadership and management, including current job opportunities, soft skills you need, salary information and more. DOWNLOAD MY FREE GUIDE

Do You Have What It Takes To Lead a Team?

If you’re wondering how to lead a team effectively or if you have what it takes to be a leader, you’ve come to the right place. Undertaking a leadership role means taking on new responsibilities and setting an example for those around you. In many circumstances, being an effective leader is a challenge within anyone’s grasp. Whether you’re leading a small team or managing a large group of people, you will be the one people look up to. You can learn and practice the qualities and traits of great leaders. If you can master these, it will significantly increase your ability to manage successful projects. However, it is important to keep in mind that you may not master these abilities straight away. You are bound to make mistakes. However, if you stay true to yourself and keep working at it, you will be a better leader for it. Effective leadership requires critical self-assessment Effective leaders know how to ask the tough questions. Not only of others but also of themselves. To be a good leader and to lead a team effectively, you must stop and ask yourself: “What do I like to do? What are my weaknesses? What are my strengths?” By doing this, not only can you establish areas in which you may need improvement, but it also allows you to delegate to others who may succeed in fields you don’t. This will help your team to exist as a cohesive unit, working towards one common goal. Do leaders need project management skills? More and more organisations are constantly striving to deliver successful projects faster while battling with the increasing complexity of business environments. You must have outstanding project management skills to lead a team through these challenges. Effective project managers understand what goes on within the organisation. They constantly work with their team to improve things for stakeholders, suppliers and other functional leaders. While many are born with these skills, they are often taught best by an expert. For example, a Diploma of Project Management can help you to refine this specialty, honing in on how effective project management can increase productivity for the organisation as a whole. Download our FREE 'Your Career in Leadership & Management' Guide Find the latest information in our eBook about a career in leadership and management, including current job opportunities, soft skills you need, salary information and more. DOWNLOAD MY FREE GUIDE   Good leaders use their intuition There is no roadmap for effective team leadership – sometimes, you just have to follow your gut. In many circumstances, your decision as a leader will come with great risk – this is where your natural intuition comes into play. We’re not talking about the guidance of members through everyday tasks, but the occurrence of an unexpected hiccup that may cause the ship to sink. When an issue arises, your team will look to you for direction. It will be predominantly up to you to make the tough decisions, steering your team in whichever way you see fit. You must learn to trust yourself. This will in turn create a culture of calmness and stability, where everyone feels they are in capable hands. The value of organisational knowledge in management Good leaders know their organisation inside and out and can set effective goals for their team. They understand the mission and vision of the company, as well as the goals their team is working towards. An effective leader can take a step back to see the big picture and understand how their team fits into it. Full organisational knowledge brings you one step closer to excellent leadership. Being well-versed in this information will help you relay it to your team, which creates a unified vision that you are working towards. How do you recognise achievements in your team? Your team members crave acknowledgment from their leader. When they do a good job, it is important they feel you’ve recognised this achievement. Unfortunately, few bosses do much in the way of rewarding employees for a job well done. Intrinsic motivation costs little to no money and is easy to implement, so give someone a pat on the back for a job well done. This will help instill a higher sense of morale within your team, motivating others to work towards the satisfaction that comes with being acknowledged for hard work. Your Career in Leadership and Management Do you want to learn more about leadership and management skills you need to be a good leader, emerging job roles and salaries, and recent industry insights?  Discover your career in leadership and management.  LEADERSHIP AND MANAGEMENT CAREER PAGE

How To Avoid Your Best Employees Quitting

Perhaps the most important decision you will make in your career is who your manager will be. After all, ultimately everything will rise and fall on the strength of its leaders. One of the biggest contributing factors for your best employees quitting is not giving your employees enough opportunities to progress and develop. It is surprising how often you hear managers complaining about their best employees quitting, and they have good reason to do so as employees leaving is costly and hugely disruptive. Many managers tend to blame their staff turnover on many factors, but remember people don’t leave jobs, they often leave their managers. 1. Employees quit when you don’t recognise their talents and strengths Not recognising your top employee’s unique strengths and talents and recognising their high performance is most definitely an engagement killer. People love to use their unique talents and strengths and should never be suppressed or they will feel their talents are going to waste and not being utilised. The greatest managers will leverage close relationships with their employees by finding out what their strengths are and taking the time to bring out the best in their employees. When managers assist with the development of their staff through their strengths and natural talents, they are more likely to engage with their team members. 2. Employees quit when you overwork them Nothing deflates a good employee like overworking them. Of course, it is highly tempting to work your best people hard, but as a good manager, you need to find a healthy balance. If it is unavoidable to increase your top employee’s workload then perhaps it is also time to increase their job position. Talented employees will naturally take on a bigger workload but they will not stay if this is not recognised. When increasing an employee’s workload you should also look to increasing salaries, promotions and title changes. If you increase an employee’s workload without changing anything or rewarding your employees, they will seek another job that gives them what they deserve. Download our FREE 'Your Career in Leadership & Management' Guide Find the latest information in our eBook about a career in leadership and management, including current job opportunities, soft skills you need, salary information and more. DOWNLOAD MY FREE GUIDE 3. Employees quit when there’s a lack of communication Another mistake that leads to staff turnover is a lack of communication. As a manager, you should hold regular meetings with your employees this way your employees feel informed and will stay engaged. Mere interactions between managers and employees are not enough. Employees value communication from their managers highly, this should not just be about tasks or jobs but also about their interests and taking an interest in their personal lives. Employees who feel as though their manager is invested in them is more likely to be engaged. Many managers are guilty of is withholding information from their staff. The reverse of this is a leader who acts responsibly by sharing information and being transparent with their team. 4. Employees quit when you micromanage them Micro-managing can attribute largely to staff turnover and employees quitting. As a manager you should ask yourself, are you focusing on your team’s development? Do you truly value your staff? Secondly, are you providing your staff with consistent feedback, and more importantly, are you listening to the feedback that will further support your staff’s needs? Another important question to ask yourself is how can you improve as a leader. Are you allowing your staff to give their opinion, express their creativity and allowing them to make their own decisions? 5. Employees quit when you don’t listen The final common mistake that leads to staff turnover is when managers fail to listen to their staff. If a manager fails to listen to their employees when they are pursuing a vision, team members will not feel valued or respected. If management do not solicit the concerns and opinions of others, especially during a change, the trust will begin to erode and morale will soon begin to diminish. Many aspire for a manager who will allow others to give input to important initiatives and the only way to do this is to first listen. 6. Employees quit when you hire and promote the wrong employees Your valuable, hard-working employees will want to work with professionals alike. When managers hire the wrong people, this will have a huge impact on your staff turnover. Higher the wrong candidates will disrupt company culture, decrease productivity and can lead to potential loss of clients and revenue. It is not uncommon for managers to promote their employers without considering how the candidate’s strengths and requirements of the new role align. Remember, if you remove a high performer from their existing role and transition them to another role where they are not successful, you will then be losing out on two highly functional positions. Management also influences around 70% of engagement, putting the wrong person in a role can negatively affect the rest of the team. Eliminating many of these bad habits as a leader will keep your best employees quitting. First, it begins with self-awareness and then to figure out what leadership behaviours need to be learned and practised. If you want to avoid your best employees quitting, you need to think carefully about how you treat them. Although your best employees may seem as if they are planning to stick around, their talent and abundance of skills also give them many options and opportunities. Make your employees want to work for you to help retain great employees. Your Career in Human Resources Do you want to learn more about HR skills employers demand, emerging job roles and salaries, and recent industry insights?  Discover your career in human resources.  HUMAN RESOURCES CAREER PAGE

How to Increase Your Employee Commitment and Loyalty

One of the biggest challenges managers face is how to maintain a happy and engaged workforce. One of the most fascinating and sometimes frustrating aspects of business is its ability to constantly evolve in line with shifts in the cultural, economic and political infrastructure. So, how can we increase your employee commitment and loyalty? We have more energy, are less stressed, more helpful to others, more creative and ultimately achieve more when we are happy. When it comes to the workplace, while keeping customers and clients happy has been a focus of business success, it has become apparent ensuring employee happiness should become a priority. After all, happy employees will mean improved productivity and increased profits. Similarly, employees hold the same readiness to change, as their personal and professional circumstances adapt and change to accommodate what they would like or need from their professional life. It has become critical that managers and HR Departments place a strong emphasis on retaining top talent by incorporating small but effective changes to their workplace culture, making employees feel valued, motivated and therefore a loyal asset to the company. Construct career growth opportunities Employees are attracted to a company which presents an opportunity for them to have a positive effect on the company, whilst continuing to learn and develop alongside the growth of the company. From the onset of a person’s employment, employees look to create a connection to their position and the company by establishing ways to adapt and improve their position. An employee will not be satisfied unless they see there is room for growth and progression and that as an employer, you want to see them succeed beyond the specifications of their initial job role. A great employer should work in collaboration with their employees to build a career plan which sets out goals and objectives which both the employer and the employee would like to achieve. Although you may hold regular performance reviews, you should also look to hold regular meetings with your employees to determine how they are finding their role, where they are performing well and where they may need improvements or extra training. Most importantly, employers must ensure employees’ roles coincides with their future career prospects to ensure employee commitment and loyalty to the company. Respect your employees needs Although we try to keep our personal issues out of the workplace, there are some occasions where our personal and professional lives may merge. It is important to create a flexible approach to managing your workforce, this may include flexible working patterns, annual leave and also their professional development. There are many advantages of workplace flexibility, it can allow for both employers and employees to reach agreements on arrangements that are beneficial to both parties. Some companies may require a greater degree of flexibility but this flexibility ensures that work-life balance remains consistent for relationships between employees and employers. Taking the time to understand your employees’ needs will demonstrate you are making the effort to fully integrate them into the company and see them as a valued member of the team, crucial to increase your employee commitment and loyalty.   Download our FREE 'Your Career in Leadership & Management' Guide Find the latest information in our eBook about a career in leadership and management, including current job opportunities, soft skills you need, salary information and more. DOWNLOAD MY FREE GUIDE Provide Feedback People like to know when they are getting things right, or at the very least, know how they can improve to be the very best they can. Providing consistent feedback opens up communications between managers and employees. Employees get a better understanding of where they are succeeding and what requires more attention, and managers get an insight into the office dynamics and daily workflow. When providing feedback, we must remember it is only effective when delivered objectively and fairly. Clear Communication Lack of communication within the workplace can result in the dissolution of workplace productivity, working relationships and the overall level of happiness within the company. Without clear communication, employees will find it difficult to understand what is expected of them, how to react to changes and what policies and direction they should be following. Lacking clear communication can potentially decrease your employee commitment and loyalty. Strong communication provides an opportunity for employees to open up about any grievances they may have. Often grievances can go unresolved and can even escalate to a potentially damaging problem. Great communication within the workplace is an excellent way to minimise misunderstandings from happening and will ensure your employees are happy at work. Encourage Team Bonding Employers and employees spend a significant amount of their lives at work, this means we are instinctively inclined to build relationships with those we work with. Although, due to the busy nature of the modern working life, these relationships are often neglected and as a result of this the workplace morale can sometimes suffer. If you provide opportunities for colleagues to build closer bonds with each other, this will help them to develop a strong and collaborative network which can support and guide them through some of the challenges they may face. Strong bonds can encourage the development of a more positive work environment, this enhances productivity and the overall well-being within the company, to benefit both business and the employees.  Team bonding activities should take place outside of working hours in an informal setting. This could be anything from joining a sports club to quiz night or social drinks. Create Clear Strategies for Employee Engagement Increasing employee commitment and loyalty is an ongoing goal and takes lots of ground-work. Now common as a long-term goal for most managers, increasing engagement and communication are vital to encouraging a healthy and loyal workforce. Managers holding a nationally recognised leadership and management qualification have demonstrated skills and competencies to put the right strategy in place to grow and leverage employee productivity to help drive the business forward. By studying a Diploma of Leadership & Management (BSB50420) online, managers can guarantee they have the core knowledge to confidently lead their workforce and generate greater employee commitment and loyalty.

The Advantages of Workplace Flexibility

Workplace flexibility allows employers and employees to make working arrangements that suit them. This helps employees maintain a healthy work-life balance and helps employers improve the productivity and efficiency of their business. Businesses that enforce a rigid and unyielding workspace decrease their chances of hiring top talent. Exceptional leaders understand that talent is the single most important factor in a company’s success. Without the right talent, your company will be stationary. To attract and retain great employees, leaders and HR teams should work with employees and help them customise their jobs. Ultimately, this will make people feel valued, which will lead to peak performance. The solution is to be flexible and collaborative with hours, holidays and location. What is workplace flexibility? Workplace flexibility is when an employee and an employer make changes to when, where and how a person will work. Flexibility enables both individual and business needs to be met by making changes to the time, location and manner in which an employee works. It is important that flexibility is mutually beneficial to result in better outcomes. Different types of workplace flexibility Formal flexibility policies: These policies are officially approved human resource policies, as well as any official policies that give supervisors discretion to provide flexibility. Informal flexibility policies: These policies are not official or recorded, but are still available to some employees, even on a discretionary basis. Location flexibility If your employees do not need to be in the office, your talent is suddenly global. You can build productive relationships with talent across the country or even worldwide. Distance is becoming increasingly irrelevant with the increased use of social networks, project-specific groups and teleconferencing. Businesses that promote hybrid and remote working are the workplaces of the future. Your Career in Human Resources Do you want to learn more about HR skills employers demand, emerging job roles and salaries, and recent industry insights?  Discover your career in human resources.  HUMAN RESOURCES CAREER PAGE Flexibility builds loyalty When you work with people to customise their work-life balance, you should not impose anything on them. This shows you are treating them with respect and trust, which will be returned. When an employee chooses to work from home for three days of the week, this exhibits a huge commitment to the business. Instead of working for you, they are working with you. This builds a lot of trust and respect, along with improving your company culture. Flexibility builds morale Recent studies show that organisations that offer workplace flexibility have less absence and turnover with higher levels of engagement and productivity. This comes down to control. We all need to feel control of our lives and by working with your employees on flexibility, you grant them real control. They feel trusted and valued and their investment in the work and the business will grow. Future-proofing business Many businesses today view workplace flexibility as a strategic move rather than an employee benefit. The more progressive and innovative your company is, the easier it will be to attract and retain employees. Those with a lot to offer want to work within a company that treats them like adults and has an empathetic, energetic and progressive culture. The rise in telecommuting means that companies can save costs on supplies, real estate and utilities. Telecommuters can work anytime and anywhere as long as the work required gets completed. Flexibility is value-adding Truly engaged employees don’t leave their jobs behind when they’re off the clock. They carry their current projects with them and are always open to new inspiration or insight. Employees who are telecommuting or working on schedules that they helped design, means these workers are out in the world more, open to input and away from the office environment where stagnation can set in. An employee with a well-rounded, active lifestyle will bring implemented core values to any job and find new inspiration. Telecommuting can be a challenge for managers. They can’t just approach someone in person to discuss an issue. Balancing schedules and workloads can also be complicated if you are managing telecommuters, although the results are worthwhile. Workplace flexibility is a great leadership tool, and it is essential to make sure you are using it to its full potential. What's your Management Trajectory? Are you wondering how far away you are from your next promotion? Take our quiz to assess your management career pathway. GO TO QUIZ

Seagull Managers

It’s almost 30 years since the book ‘Leadership and the One Minute Manager’ introduced the concept of seagull managers. Three decades on, they are more common than ever. What is a seagull manager? You know, the seagull manager – they fly in, hover about, squawk, make their presence felt, indiscriminately let you have it from a great height, pinch your chips, squawk, and then fly off again, leaving you to clean up after them. Happy days, heh? Unsurprisingly, it’s not much fun being part of the seagull culture. Unless perhaps you’re the top gull. Do seagull managers add any value to an organisation? I think not and here are four good reasons why: Culture: Seagulls have a detrimental impact on organisational culture. Talent retention: People join organisations, but they leave their bosses. The brightest and best won’t work for fools. They get up and go. This has a big detrimental effect on talent retention. Non-value-adding activity: Seagulls consume considerable organisational time and resources, which they don’t convert into value-adding outputs and outcomes. Good resources in, rubbish out. Distraction: With all their squawking, it’s easy for seagulls to divert attention away from the organisational mission. Download our FREE 'Your Career in Leadership & Management' Guide Find the latest information in our eBook about a career in leadership and management, including current job opportunities, soft skills you need, salary information and more. DOWNLOAD MY FREE GUIDE   Why are some leaders seagull managers? Very often, seagulls are trying to impose their control over a situation. By flying in, they can say that they have done their job – it was the ‘people on the ground’ who couldn’t perform. You can’t blame little old Teflon-coated me if the troops aren’t up to it. As for the squawking and general carrying on, they have likely never received any leadership or management training. They may have accepted a position for an increased pay rise without being prepared for the additional responsibilities. If they are part of a workplace that doesn’t offer management development or mentorship, they make things up as they go along. They may also copy the management styles of their superiors or default to an autocratic ‘I say and you do’ way of doing things. Leadership requires many intrapersonal skills – like communication, teamwork, and negotiating personality differences – and hard skills, such as time management, prioritisation, administration, and breaking down goals to achieve them. Some people possess these skills naturally; most do not. Of course, your seagull manager may be a bad egg who is more focused on their own success than that of their team. But the likelier scenario to consider is that their frustrating flappery has more to do with their lack of skill and confidence than their personality. They haven’t been set up for success. How to transform a seagull manager If you have a seagull manager or you recognise some of these qualities in yourself, help isn’t far away. Anyone can learn how to become a good leader and you shouldn’t feel bad for not naturally possessing these skills (or judge someone too quickly for not managing well). There are many short courses you can take that will build specific skills – LinkedIn Learning and Masterclass offer a range of these. However, the best bang for your buck will be to undertake a Certificate IV or Diploma of Leadership & Management (BSB50420). These courses are perfect for those new to management, supervision, or team leadership and who want to learn how to become effective and efficient managers in a changing work environment. Even if you’re not a seagull manager, leadership and management training can strengthen your skills and sharpen you to take the place of an ineffective seagull manager. You can also have a quiet word with your HR team to recommend your seagull manager receives training and support. Your Career in Leadership and Management Do you want to learn more about leadership and management skills you need to be a good leader, emerging job roles and salaries, and recent industry insights?  Discover your career in leadership and management.  LEADERSHIP AND MANAGEMENT CAREER PAGE

How to Respond to a Job Application

Going through job applications is the first step in your company’s efforts to find people to help steer the organisation towards success. Unfortunately, this process can be a difficult task, especially for companies who anticipate having a large number of applicants responding to their open positions. Consider some of these important guidelines when you are planning how to respond to a job application and you will have a much easier time sorting through the applicants to find the person who will be the best fit for the job. Early Sorting Procedures When you first post a job opening for your company, you can expect the largest number of respondents within the first week or two of the posting. Therefore, when you are thinking about how to respond to a job application, it is important that you have a way to filter out unqualified applicants. One good plan for this part of the process is to identify a few core skills that you need your applicants to have. For example, if you are looking for someone with customer service skills who also understands how to work together in small groups, make note of these traits and search for them in your pool of applications. If you have a larger number of applicants, you can set aside the applications of people who do not have these skills. Also consider experience. Are you looking for a certain level of experience for your position? Is there any substitute that you would accept from those without this experience? Many companies will ask for either a certain type of training, or a set number of years working in a specific kind of department or position. If an applicant doesn’t have the right kind of experience or the right kind of training, it may not be safe to set aside their application. Calling Applicants for Interviews After you have been able to sort through applicants to find the ones who seem to be most qualified, the next thing to tackle when considering how to respond to a job application is choosing candidates to call for an interview. You might look for candidates who have direct experience in a very similar position, or those who have worked in companies like yours for a while. Remember to also pay attention to work history. While many HR departments consider large gaps in a work history to be a bad sign, you should not write off a candidate who seems to be qualified just because they were out of work for a certain period of time, especially if it was not a long gap or they are in a field where it is tough to secure immediate employment. Try to choose a few candidates who you think have the experience and skills to do well at the position you need to fill, and then reach out to schedule an interview with them. It is best to call them by phone, but if this is not possible you can always send an email message or a letter asking them to get in touch with you. At the Interview When preparing for the interview, you should already have a list of questions to ask that will help you understand whether or not they would fit in at your company. However, don’t let your focus get caught up solely on how they answer your questions or what their CV looks like. Pay attention to the way that they dress, their posture, the way they communicate with you, and other forms of body language that can clue you in to the type of person they are. If you are looking for someone in a customer-facing role and they seem very meek or uncomfortable with communication, they may not be right for the job, even if they have a strong application and lots of experience in the field. Also keep in mind that you should have one or two questions that are simply created in order to understand how your applicant’s thought process works. Innovative tech companies like Google and Apple are well known for asking seemingly impossible questions like “how many piano tuners are there in the entire world?” or “why are manhole covers round?” You don’t have to ask questions this radical, but make sure that you include some interview questions that help you see how well your applicants can think outside of the box.   HR Departments wondering how to respond to a job application effectively may face some challenges, but with these strategies you can make it less difficult to find the most ideal candidate to help your company succeed.

4 Ways to Give Constructive Feedback

Giving negative feedback to your employees can be a very daunting task for managers. However, as difficult as it is- being able to do so effectively can result in improved interpersonal relationships and a far more productive work environment. In order to communicate your ideas constructively, it’s all important that you get your message across in a way that isn’t detrimental to an employee’s self confidence and work ethic. Make feeling intimidated a thing of the past with our 4 helpful tips that will make giving feedback that much easier: 1. Be specific Make sure that you don’t beat around the bush. Tell your employee the exact instance where they have made a mistake and explain what they can do differently. If you’re vague, your feedback can be misunderstood and your employee may continue making mistakes. 2. Be timely Don’t wait too long to give an employee feedback. An immediate response to their action will allow them to associate it with your feedback. This increases the likelihood that they are wary of when they may make the same mistake again. 3. Be positive For all the negative feedback you give, you should have just as much positive feedback. You should also approach the criticism in a positive way and focus on your employee’s strengths. Use this feedback as a learning opportunity for you and your employee. 4. Be understanding Discuss with your employee about the source of the mistake and what he or she could have done instead. Work together to figure out whether your employee needs any extra assistance with their job, and offer them help where they may need it. Being able to provide constructive feedback to your employees doesn’t only enable them to work more efficiently. It also gives you a better understanding of how you are managing your employees and what you can do to keep them motivated.

Global Talent Shortages and the Evolving Role of the HRM Professional

  Businesses around the world are currently experiencing a profound market shift, one that will impact both the supply and demand for skilled talent over the next decade according to the research study, Global Talent 2021. Oxford Economics conducted the study in partnership with professional services company Towers Watson, and other firms. The research reveals that while technology fuels demand for highly skilled workers, emerging economies are increasing the supply of talent by giving people greater access to education. The study, which surveyed 352 human resource executives, examines how rapid globalisation and the transformation of business models in virtually every industry will affect workforce needs in the future, and the implications for senior executives and HR leaders. As the skills required by employers become more complex, labour shortages are projected in many mature markets, including Australia the U.S., Germany, Canada, and Italy. Meanwhile, a surplus of skilled talent is likely to emerge in locales such as Brazil, Colombia, India and South Africa. Digital knowledge, agile thinking, interpersonal and communication skills, and global operating capabilities will increasingly be skills in high demand over the next five to 10 years. In the developed world, where talent shortages in a number of managerial and technical fields are expected to persist, companies will be forced to think more explicitly about the trade-offs among outsourcing work, offshoring staff and retraining workers. The study said that HRM Professionals will need to develop more evidence-based strategies to manage global talent. These may include using improved analytics to: Identify talent segments and gaps; Optimise resource allocation; Integrate workforce plans; and Manage unavoidable risk. The report recommends five areas that HR Professionals should consider to prepare themselves for the changes: More reliance on logic-driven analytics Talent segmentation Talent optimisation Moving from risk avoidance to risk leverage Integration/synergy Not surprisingly for students of CAL’s HR courses, HRM Professionals will need to be skilled at working in diverse cultures, managing complexity and change, applying the latest analytical tools and thinking creatively about filling future skill gaps before they emerge. They will also need to think more broadly about how and where talented employees are sourced. The CAL Human Resources Dual qualification program and the Diploma HRM program covers all this and more – this means CAL graduates are well equipped to manage the impending talent shortages and to ensure your company is well placed to attract and retain the cream of the talent crop over the next decade and beyond. Helen Sabell, CEO, College for Adult Learning

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Kerri Waddell
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Kerri is a Learning and Development (L&D) professional with 21 years of experience in the field. She has a holistic understanding of the L&D function. She has a broad range of skills, knowledge and capabilities related to organisational training and assessment delivery, training needs analysis, training program development, training procedures development, L&D planning and reporting, staff development, leadership/management, performance management, HR functions and project management.

Kerri’s personal educational philosophy is to make a positive difference to the professional and personal lives of people through learning. She likes to assist people to be the best they can be by helping them to believe in their own abilities. She is truly passionate about helping people to learn, grow and achieve!

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