How do we convince our management that top-down decision-making may be hurting our business?
—Indecisive on Decisions, software/services, Worcester, Massachusetts
Our organization is conflicted about certifications for coaches. The HR department wants to send our internal coaches/managers through a certification program, but upper management first wants to do a cost-benefit analysis. How do we make the case?
—No Playbook, logistics and transportation, Santa Barbara, California
Senior executives at our midsize organization believe it's time to begin succession planning. How do we explain the potential impact to employees, including the effect on career development?
—New to the Game, finance/insurance/real estate, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
How do we methodically measure the true value of our human resources function?
—Method Actor, general manager, human resources, automotive, Lahore, Pakistan
Like many organizations, we're forced to try and do more with less. How do we still innovate and keep people motivated/inspired to keep giving their all?
—Strapped for Resources, supervisor, manufacturing, Flint, Michigan
We have terrific software programmers who are technically proficient. Most show little interest in professional development beyond writing more code. How
could we get their attention?
—Cracking the Code, team leader, software/services, Andover, Massachusetts
How many employees should we have to justify hiring a human resources manager?
Our company has 60 employees and has acquired a new company with 80 employees. It has turned around since the economy and expects to add to staff and have additional acquisitions. However, we have no HR staff and don't know how many employees is the "right" number to justify hiring one. (This would be the sole HR position in this company: no subordinates.)
Right now we are implementing HR policies with the assistance of outside consultants.
—Anxious to Grow, vice president of operations/administration, aerospace, Laguna Beach, California
I am a new supervisor really struggling with what seems like a simple problem. How do I suggest assertiveness training to other new managers without coming across as demeaning? I want to make it part of annual reviews, but am not sure this is the best approach.
—My Tongue Is Tied, product administrator, services, Seal Beach, California
The results from our employee survey identified three areas of concern: rewards and recognition, career advancement, and work organization/work flow. Employees are not satisfied that their pay is equal to their workload, and also complain about a lack of advancement opportunities. The issue of poor work organization/work flow pinches on the first two issues. How should we address these issues—one at a time or all at once?
—Feeling Powerless, assistant manager, manufacturing, Southeast Asia
We are getting ready to recruit graphic designers and want only the best. What is the average salary range for top graphic designers?
—Budget-conscious project manager, services, Ontario, Canada