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How Do We Build Acceptance of Younger Managers?

July 10, 2014
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We have some fast-rising young managers — some homegrown, some hired externally — who are faced with leading mixed work teams that sometimes include co-workers who are older than they are. This presents an interesting dynamic and we are trying to help these managers build respect and credibility with subordinates who are of an older generation.

— Generation Gap, Santa Monica, California


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How Do I Set Up an Onboarding Program?

July 8, 2014
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I am overseeing the inception of an online onboarding/orientation site for new employees. How do I gather peer-reviewed information/suggestions to complete the project (we need to have it up and running by September 2014)? What are the characteristics of a successful implementation and, conversely, what challenges are we most likely to encounter? Are there any good case studies or user examples of how this can be done successfully?

— Still Learning, Education, Manchester, New Hampshire


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How Do We Get Employees to Mentor?

June 30, 2014
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What do we do when experienced employees don't want to mentor fresh blood? Specializing in products for which experienced talent is hard to recruit, my company has to focus a lot on developing new talent and training them on the technical skills to build a critical talent pipeline. Because of the overall economic volatility, the employees feel insecure of losing what they have. We have found out through exit interviews that young talent is leaving us because they receive little help and training from their seniors. We suspect fear of losing their current position is the reason. What do we do?

— No One Cares Here, manufacturing/production, Lahore, India


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How Do We Make a Supervisor Deal With a Problem Employee?

June 30, 2014
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We have a problem that needs resolution right away. One of our supervisors avoids dealing with a problem employee, who tends to bully others into accepting his ideas and resists collaborating with his co-workers. Each time a complaint is brought forward, this supervisor buries his head in the sand. What kind of training or intervention should we provide? How do we raise this delicate issue?

— Intimidated by the Problem, human resources specialist, nonprofit, Washington, D.C.


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How Do We Get Our ESOP Plan Started?

June 17, 2014
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My company wants to start an employee stock ownership plan, or ESOP, that defines a vesting year as being an actively employed participant on Dec. 31 of that year and you credited with at least 1,000 hours of employment. Should this include regular hours, overtime hours, and PTO hours? What else might we need to consider?
— ESOP Fable, financial/insurance/real estate, Des Moines, Iowa

employee stock ownership plan

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How Can I Create a Willingness to Learn Among My Employees?

June 17, 2014
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My company wants to enable employees and their reporting managers to take complete ownership of the learning process, from identifying learning objectives to figuring out the best way to learn. What are the ways I can create this 'willingness to learn' among employees so that they actually take ownership?

--Shared Responsibility, manufacturing production, Mumbai, India


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How Do We Adapt to Virtual Work?

May 30, 2014
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We have been doing research regarding virtual organizations — particularly related to training and the role that managers play. How we do get our organization to adapt/embrace this new way of working?


 — Changing World, assistant HR specialist, Port Elizabeth, South Africa


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How Do We Set Improvement Priorities?

May 30, 2014
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In our recent employee opinion survey, staff in the finance department identified rewards, recognition and career advancement as their top three concerns. Which area should we focus on improving first?

— Priority Setter, Utilities, South Carolina


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How Do We Acquire Contagious Leaders?

May 30, 2014
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How do we recruit (or groom) “contagious” leaders — people who spread their skills and develop more leaders? I know it won’t be easy, but give me some idea how to go about establishing this type of leadership culture.

— Leadership Sickness, Oil and Mining, Alabama


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How Do We Evaluate Social Learning Platforms?

May 12, 2014
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We have been moving slowly to integrate social learning in our LMS. We want to include tools that boost the nature of collaboration among our workers, especially among those who are stationed remotely. How do we evaluate social learning platforms to find the best match? How heavily should we rely on employee feedback?

 — Socializing at Work, vice president of talent, manufacturing, New York


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