Change – it’s everywhere
Over the last month I have had many, many conversations with people who are going through change at work. There is much uncertainty. Lots of people are affected personally by this change i.e. their own jobs may be at risk.
I’ve been there. Many years ago when I was a group HR director, the organisation I was working for was going to be broken up into various parts. I remember vividly, the conversation with my boss one morning where I was officially given notice that my job was at risk. It was really weird. I was the HR director after all. How dare he!…..Actually, being part of various business discussions before, I’d been expecting the conversation. Even so, I felt a whole series of emotions all at the same time. Many other people were about to be put at risk. I had to lead the process of notifying them, whilst going through my own trauma. I’ll never forget it.
I had completed my mediation training a few months earlier. I agreed to help the organisation through what was going to be a pretty difficult period and then I would move on. The organisational change gave me an opportunity to apply my new skills. At that stage I had no idea that it would lead to what I do today. In fact, it was during this period that I conducted one of my first ever mediation sessions. One of our subsidiary companies was going to be part of a management buy out (MBO). The HR part of the due diligence process flagged up a number of people issues. One was about a person who had been on long term sick. The MBO team and their financiers saw the sickness record as a risk that they didn’t want to take on – hence a mediated discussion was arranged. I remember it clearly. The mediation took place in the employee’s home (he was still off sick but wanted to talk) and he was accompanied by his father. A lengthy discussion took place, a settlement was agreed and heads of terms drafted. As I was leaving, the employee’s father stopped me, looked me in the eye and said “thank you – my son can move on with his life with some dignity now”. It was one of the early experiences that convinced me about the power of the mediation process.
Recently, I shared the fuller version of this story with a group going through change and ended it by saying that as we go through change, things rarely turn out to be as bad as we might think. For many, it becomes the start of something bigger, better and more fulfilling. If you are personally affected at the moment, try and keep positive. Your investment in self development will pay dividends during these difficult times.
Stress and Wellbeing Management
As you know, we specialise in preventative and remedial solutions for better workplace relationships. We have a new person joining our team shortly who specialises in Stress and Wellbeing Management. We will be hosting a free briefing session to outline the work we will be doing in this area. The free session will take place on the morning of Monday 19th July 2010 in Central London Spaces will be limited.
Please could you bring this session to the attention of the appropriate person/people in your organisation and let us know how many from your organisation might like to attend? We could also run the free session on an in-house basis.
One of the organisations we work with is currently looking for a Director of Education. It is a London based role with some international travel. The salary is c£60k. If this might interest you, please be in touch and I can provide some further information.
Our next webinar
Our next webinar is scheduled for 2.00pm on Thursday 24th June and will be on the new Equality Act. Sonali Parekh, Head of Policy on the Act, from the Government Equalities office and Andy Williams from Charles Russell LLP will be presenters. Estimates suggest the introduction of the Act will add a cost of £310m to the UK economy due to an increase of disputes going to Tribunals. This will be a valuable session for you or someone from your equaliity and diversity team. Webinar – The 2010 Equalities Act