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Keep Staff Happy: Local Business told

Created on 06/08/2010 @ 09:03
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Welshpoool area businesses need to take a proactive approach to employees’ well-being to avoid a workforce “plagued by high staff turnover and low morale” a leading management expert has warned

David Pardey, senior manager for research and policy at the Institute of Leadership and Management, urged managers to place more importance on a healthy workplace, which he argued is vital for productivity during tough economic times.

Mr Pardey was addressing a group of Welsh women as part of a seminar series offered to women undertaking management and career development training as part of women’s economic development agency Chwarae Teg’s £12.5m European-funded project, Agile Nation.

His comments come after research by insurance group Aviva revealing 31% of businesses admit their sole concern is profit and productivity.

Mr Pardey said: “The Welsh economy is facing unprecedented cuts in the public and private sector, meaning organisations are under added pressure to survive and maintain a productive and committed workforce.

“It is vital that in a period of economic uncertainty, managers are able to communicate well with their team and organise people to work effectively. Managers who fail at this leave their company vulnerable to profit losses, increased absenteeism and high staff turnover.”

His warning to managers to improve use of emotional intelligence as a way of encouraging top performances from employees coincides with research which revealed that one in five people believe their manager creates a stressful work environment.

“Many managers and team leaders feel that there is no place for emotion in the workplace but ignoring emotional reactions to issues such as redundancies and increased workload can lead to low morale and decreased productivity,” Mr Pardey added.

“Managers have a responsibility to motivate staff and reduce anxiety.”

The Agile Nation project aims to work with 2,790 women and increase female progression and retention in the workplace.

The project aims to deliver leadership and management training for employed women and help employers implement flexible working.

Agile Nation project participant Dorcas Cox, from south Wales-based solicitors Gwyn George Partnership, said: “David’s message is an eye-opener and it highlights the importance of emotional intelligence in the workplace.

“It is important that when employment issues, managers are perceptive and proactive in seeking a solution.”

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