Riding the Wave. Sep 2012


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A manual and a series of workshops to provide employers and managers practical tips and resources to take full advantage of the benefits of an ethnically diverse workplace.

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Riding the Wave. Sep 2012

  1. 1. RidingMoving from the ‘Right Thing’ to do to the Bright Thing to do whenmaximising the benefits that ethnic diversity brings to our workplace. the Wave
  2. 2. 2 Riding the Wave
  3. 3. Kia ora and welcome to Riding the Wave, The Office of Ethnic Affairs is committed toa guide to maximising the benefits that ethnic achieving better government, communitydiversity brings to our workplaces. and business outcomes through intercultural understanding and communication.It is a fact that New Zealand is becoming This practical guide provides local andmore ethnically diverse. Between 2001 international findings on how New Zealandand 2006, the ethnic sectors population organisations across the spectrum can utiliseincreased by more than a third. By 2021, diversity management tools to improve theiralmost 18 per cent of the population will be business outcomes.comprised of ethnic people. Whatever business you may be in,This rise in the diversity of our population is I encourage you to consider how thisflowing through to our workplaces. In the guide can be applied to your organisation.workforce there is increasing diversity ofemployees and employers. Customers and Mervin Singhamstakeholders are becoming more diverse too. Director Office of Ethnic AffairsIt is imperative that we respond to ethnicdiversity in order to be successful inthe future. New Zealand organisations cangain immensely by responding to thesechanges more strategically. For organisationsto continue to deliver high quality servicesor products and to be more innovativeand productive, they need to integratediversity management into every facet oftheir business. This includes building coreintercultural awareness and communicationskills in the workplace.But while we often talk about the changingwork environment and creating moreinclusive workplaces where diversity isrespected, some people face difficulties inidentifying what practical actions they shouldbe taking.© Office of Ethnic Affairs 2010 Foreword
  4. 4. Contents2 IntroductionManaging ethnic diversity6 Leadership and management10 Human resources13 Recruitment and selection18 Retention and succession21 Employee empowerment23 Product and service design26 Evaluation and monitoring28 Conclusion – Bringing it all togetherCase studies33 Case studies introduction34 Beca Transportation36 Damwatch38 Digital Island40 Longveld Engineering42 MW Cleaning Services44 New Zealand Post Group46 The Johnson Group48 Wesley Community Action50 Aetna USA52 An Garda Síochána (Irish police force)54 British Telecommunications55 IBM Australia and New ZealandAppendices58 Our methodology59 Additional reading61 Bibliography65 Want to find out more?© Office of Ethnic Affairs 2010 1
  5. 5. Introduction The Office of Ethnic Affairs (OEA) definesDid you know? ethnic diversity management as the activeOne in every four management of an ethnically diverse workforce to meet an organisation’s goalsNew Zealanders is and objectives – innovation through inclusion.born overseas. As ethnic diversity is a part of the bigger(Census 2006). ‘diversity’ picture, which includes age, gender, sexual orientation, religious belief, diversity of thought and thinking styles as“We have employed well as race, this guide should be read in Afghanis, Pakistanis, conjunction with other diversity resources. Indians, Chinese, For policy makers, this is a unique area. Iranians… and others. The OEA has a tool for developing policies Most have had no and services for ethnic people and this would provide more policy related information experience in our sector, and advice. but come with a whole This guide is about ethnic diversity in the lot of other skills that workplace – what it is, why it’s important, complement what we and how your organisation can put it into practice. are doing.”Karel Adriaens, General Manager, Coupland’s For many years New Zealand employersBakeries (South Island Bakery Chain). have hired New Zealand workers: people born in New Zealand who share the same Kiwi culture. But in the past decade, the pool of available workers has been changing. A growing number of people from different backgrounds have settled in New Zealand, while a large number of traditional workers (the ‘baby boomers’) are retiring from the workforce. At the same time, the customer base of many New Zealand organisations is becoming increasingly international. It’s easy to see that a diverse workforce is not just an available workforce, but also a very necessary and desirable one.2 Riding the Wave
  6. 6. While some studies have shown that The OEA found two important general pointsdiversity may have little or no affect on an can be made about the relationship betweenorganisation’s performance and engagement, diversity and business success.when actively managed as described in 1 The effects of workforce diversity arethis guide, ethnic diversity can: conditioned by other organisational and•• add new skills, knowledge, and behaviour contextual factors. to your talent pool. 2 Diversity can’t be used as a competitive•• bring creative and innovative new ideas organisational strength unless it’s and perspectives to your organisation. managed effectively.•• improve your organisation’s performance and results. Case StudyThe core of this guide is based on acombination of information from international IBM Australia andresearch and literature reviews as well as New Zealand is onesurveys conducted by the OEA (find outmore on this at the back of this guide). organisation that doesThe information was drawn from both have the ‘know how’local and international organisations thathave employed people of diverse ethnic when it comes tobackground. It shows their reasons or increasing productivitydrivers for this, and the challenges theyfaced. The OEA then looked at what the through the utilisationorganisations did to manage ethnic diversity of a diverse workforce.and recommendations that could be drawnfrom this. The organisations surveyed They have successfullyvaried in size; from small, to medium and made the business caselarge organisations. As such, the principles,and practices recommended within this for diversity and haveguide may equally apply to all types developed recruitment,of organisations. management, and service and product development strategies that place the value of diversity at the centre of their organisational culture.© Office of Ethnic Affairs 2010 3
  7. 7. The OEA found seven areas of businesspractice crucial to managing ethnic diversity.•• Leadership and management – provides the vision for the organisation to include ethnic diversity, and strategies to make it happen.•• Human resources – provides tools and resources to move beyond EEO data collection and surface compliance.•• Recruitment and selection – ensures the best people are employed for the job, based on merit and regardless of ethnic background.•• Retention and succession planning – finding, growing, holding on to, and promoting talented staff, including those from ethnic backgrounds.•• Employee empowerment – when employees are valued they become empowered to make decisions and take responsibility for their work, meaning better productivity.•• Product and service design – bringing it all together to use diversity to assist innovative product development and service delivery, and develop higher quality products and services to reach broader markets.•• Evaluation and monitoring – measuring the efficiency of ethnic diversity plans and actions.This guide will provide you with lots ofinformation and ideas on how ethnic diversitycould be managed in your organisation.4 Riding the Wave
  8. 8. Managing ethnic diversity© Office of Ethnic Affairs 2010 5
  9. 9. Leadership and management Leaders“Managed effectively, An organisation’s leaders have the most cultural diversity is a key power to bring about change. asset to employers with Leaders, both formal leaders (like owners, potential for improving directors, and managers), and informal leaders (people with natural leadership the business” qualities but not necessarily formal leaders)Brian Carran, Pak ‘n Save, Mt Albert. are responsible for driving organisations to meet their vision and mission. It’s up to leaders to explain why diversity is important“Baby‑boomer business to the organisation and how it makes a difference. leaders from traditional New Zealand Leaders need to align with management in backgrounds will leave their commitment to diversity. That means helping managers to increase their our labour market understanding of diversity, and supporting over the next 15 years, plans and actions that promote diversity and inclusion. giving people from diverse ethnic backgrounds Managers opportunities to move into Managing workforce diversity effectively can be a complex task. To make it work, leadership roles.” existing staff, at all levels of the organisation, Kris Hall, The Independent, 16 October, 2009. need to change the way they think about and act towards people from other ethnic backgrounds whose ways may be different from their own. Because every workplace is different, there’s no one‑size‑fits‑all approach for managing ethnic diversity. But there are several principles that can help to manage ethnic diversity in your organisation. •• Value diversity and inclusion. •• Make the most of any opportunities that diversity has to offer.6 Riding the Wave
  10. 10. •• Make sure that your values, processes, •• Support plans and actions that help and systems are open to new ideas. diversity to succeed.•• Monitor and evaluate plans and activities •• Encourage employees to get to know that support diversity. each other – go beyond the surface level.•• Promote cultural awareness at work •• Appoint a diversity officer or create a (cultural awareness means being aware of diversity team/council. the needs and behaviours of people from •• Where appropriate, work with your different cultural backgrounds). diversity officer/team/council to set up a strategy for managing diversityCommon leadership and (see Employee Empowerment later in this guide).management challenges •• Make sure you allow for sufficient funding,•• Finding theory‑based diversity time and people to support your diversity management activities that are proven. management strategy effectively.•• Actively discouraging stereotypes and •• Make sure that your approach to diversity preconceptions about people with diverse is transparent and open to all in your ethnic backgrounds. organisation; after all, it is about inclusion.•• Setting up a welcoming workplace culture •• Take time to explain diversity management for people of diverse ethnic backgrounds. to your team. Focus on the role of all staff•• Ensuring ethnic diversity strategies do not in its success. ‘exclude’ others. •• Create opportunities for people to give•• Promoting the organisation’s level of input into decisions that affect them. cultural awareness. •• Keep staff informed of progress.•• Making staff aware of activities that •• Get support to overcome challenges in support diversity. creating a diverse environment.•• Measuring the success of •• Make sure that your management and diversity strategies. boardroom includes people with diverse•• Preventing discriminatory attitudes in ethnic backgrounds. the workplace.1 •• Assess your organisation’s current diversity processes. Run a staffRecommendations satisfaction survey, develop a plan based•• Be clear with yourself and your on the survey recommendations, and put team about the value of diversity it in place. to your organisation, for example, •• Measure and celebrate success – how diversity helps to meet your remember, any big cultural change takes a organisational objectives. long time. •• Share regular diversity bulletins with information. 1 European Commission survey (2005).© Office of Ethnic Affairs 2010 7
  11. 11. Points to ponder If your organisation does not have a Diversity Management Strategy in place, consider theIf your organisation has a Diversity following.Management Strategy in place, consider •• What are the demographics ofthe following. your customers?•• Who on the formal leadership team actively •• What are the demographics of and visibly supports your organisation’s your workforce? diversity goals? •• How could a diversity management•• Who are your informal leaders across strategy reduce costs to the organisation? the organisation who could become •• How could a diversity management diversity champions? strategy drive business growth?•• What should a diversity officer role look like •• Who are the key leaders in your in your organisation? organisation to discuss this with further?•• How do you communicate your •• Who are the key leaders from other commitment to diversity? organisations you could discuss this•• How are you sharing the importance with further? of diversity and its role in your organisation’s success?•• How are you holding yourself and others Recommended reading accountable for the success of diversity? Antal, A. B., & Friedman, V. (2003).•• Is your work environment and culture right Negotiating reality as an approach to for people with diverse ethnic backgrounds intercultural competence. Berlin, Germany: to work in? Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin. Cope, B., & Kalantzis, M. (1997). ProductiveCase study diversity: A new Australian model for work and management. Amandale, NSW: PlutoWithin the New Zealand Press, pp 16‑27Post Group, the ability Dechant, K., & Robinson, G. (1997). Buildingto engage with and lead a business case for diversity. The Academy ofemployees who have Management Executive, 11(3), 21‑31.diverse backgrounds is Gandz, J. (2007). A business case foran important competency diversity. Ontario, Canada: The University of Western Ontario, Richard Ivey Schoolfor leadership positions. of Business.8 Riding the Wave
  12. 12. Hubbard, E.E., PhD. The diversity Recommended websitesscorecard: Evaluating the impact of Management Focus:diversity on organisational performance. An initiative established by a group of leadingBoston: Elsevier Butterworth‑Heinemann. New Zealand private and public sector organisations. By pooling the resources andLivermore, D. (2010). Leading with cultural expertise of these organisations, Managementintelligence: The new secret to success. Focus aims to bring a collaborative effort toNew York, NY: American Management improving New Zealand’s management capabilityAssociation. – www.managementfocus.org.nzMonks, K. (2007). The business impact of The EEO Trust:equality and diversity – The international The trust provides information and tools on equalevidence. Dublin, Ireland: National Centre employment opportunities and raises awarenessfor Partnership and Performance and The of diversity issues in the workplace. They assistEquality Authority. employers with recruiting, retaining and engaging an increasingly diverse workforce –Pyke, J. (2005). Productive diversity: www.eeotrust.org.nzWhich companies are active and why.(Master of Business Thesis, Victoria The Office of Ethnic Affairs:University, Australia). Retrieved from The OEA is focused on people whose culturehttp://wallaby.vu.edu.au/adt‑VVUT/public/ and traditions distinguish them from the majorityadt‑VVUT20050322.162924/index.html in New Zealand – www.ethnicaffairs.govt.nzWinters, Mary‑Frances. (2006) CEOswho get it: Diversity leadership from the Workplace Diversity Network:heart and soul. New York, NY: Diversity The Workplace Diversity Network was a learningBest Practices. community of diversity professionals who came from a variety of work sectors to explore emerging questions of workplace diversity and inclusion. They came together in small group forums for substantive dialogue, information sharing, research and scholarship – http:// digitalcommons.ilr.cornell.edu/wdn/ State Services Commission Equality and Diversity Policy: The EEO policy for the public service sector – http://www.ssc.govt.nz/display/document. asp?DocID=6908© Office of Ethnic Affairs 2010 9
  13. 13. Human resources To be engaged and successful in“New Zealand Post today’s workplaces, employers need to Group is a large, diverse be culturally competent, that is, having skills and knowledge to work effectively with organisation. The people from diverse ethnic backgrounds. diversity of our businesses Human resource people inevitably play a key role in growing such skills and knowledge. and in our people will continue to be a key As more and more New Zealand organisations go global they need more to our success. As an diverse talents to understand the various iconic New Zealand niches of their market. Human resource people need to organise that diverse talent organisation, which is all to deliver to the organisation’s customers about ‘people connecting and objectives. people, communities and Common human resource businesses’, we want our challenges workforce to reflect the •• There needs to be an understanding diversity of our country.” that ethnic diversity is not a ‘quota system’ where people are hired basedJacqui Cleland, Group Manager Human on something other than their skills.Resources, New Zealand Post Group •• Staff employment should be based on merit and discarding assumptions and other areas not based on this.“In many ways, •• Human resource people need to assure the effectiveness of local staff that employing people from overseas, or those born here who may be workplace diversity different from themselves, is not a threat management is dependent to their career advancement. on the skilful balancing •• Without proper control and evaluation, some of these plans and actions that act of the human support diversity may fizzle out without resources manager.” any real impact.Dr Alvin Chan, 2004, The Challenges of HumanResources Management.10 Riding the Wave
  14. 14. Recommendations •• Put a reward system in place to lift job satisfaction and motivation. Make sure it’s•• To keep pace with employment based on a sound understanding of what requirements in a modern market Human motivates your people at work. Resource people need to: •• As part of their performance, evaluate –– set up retention and talent your manager’s application of diversity management strategies for people of management strategies. diverse ethnic backgrounds, as their •• Recognise, celebrate, and showcase needs and motivations may differ from your high performers from diverse the mainstream (see retention and ethnic backgrounds as role models of succession later in this guide). great performance. –– adapt their role to become coaches, •• Regularly check how the attitudes and counsellors, and mentors to help behaviours of employees about and motivate and guide staff from diverse towards diversity have changed since the ethnic backgrounds. implementation of new diversity strategies, –– have a heightened awareness of plans, and actions. intercultural communication challenges. •• Embed diversity into HR process –– move away from being driven and policies. by compliance and towards cultural awareness. –– stand by values, ethics, and beliefs that support workplace diversity.•• Don’t pigeonhole people into ‘compartments’ based on what you see or assume.•• Set up mentoring relationships between managers and employees from diverse ethnic backgrounds, moving both beyond their own cultural frame of reference.•• Regularly assess pay, benefits, work environment, management, and how you keep people up‑to‑speed about diversity strategies, plans, and actions; and recommend improvements.•• Find tools to measure the impact of diversity management in your organisation (like feedback surveys).© Office of Ethnic Affairs 2010 11
  15. 15. Points to ponder Recommended Reading•• What are the diversity drivers for the Chan, A., Dr (2004). The challenges of business or the organisation? human resources management. Retrieved•• What are the demographics of your from http://www.diversityworking.com/ current workforce? employerZone/diversityManagement•• Do your current HR practices in recruitment, development and retention Henderson, G. (1994). Cultural diversity in the take these into account? workplace: Issues and strategies. Westport,•• How can employee loyalty, motivation, CT: Praeger Publishers. and commitment be measured and rewarded? Lindberg, A. (2010). The evolution of•• How can the communications and diversity: From ‘the right thing’ to business interactions between employees from strategy. Retrieved from http://www. diverse ethnic backgrounds be measured, workforcediversitynetwork.com/res_article_ acknowledged, or rewarded? evolution_lindberg.aspx•• Thinking about your ethnically diverse employees: Soto, J.J. (1999). Diversity is about change –– Who do they report to? and leadership in the year 2000 and beyond. –– Do they feel comfortable reporting In Motion Magazine. Retrieved from http:// to them? www.inmotionmagazine.com/soto3.html –– Do they have the right responsibilities for their position and abilities? Sondra, B. (2003). Making diversity work: –– What training and development can 7 steps for defeating bias in the workplace. you support them with? Thiederman, Chicago: Dearborn. –– How do you train people to overcome any language barriers? Tatli & Ozbilgin. (2006). Managing diversity –– Are they clear about who they need measuring success. Chartered Institute of to work with and how to engage Personnel and Development. Pg 4. with stakeholders?12 Riding the Wave
  16. 16. Recruitment and selection Keeping pace with change is one of theDid you know? biggest challenges for organisations today. Change happens constantly to all parts ofBy 2021, 25 per cent of your organisation, like an increasingly globalNew Zealand’s workforce market for your products and services, or thewill have been born pool of people you recruit from becoming more diverse. You need to understand theoverseas. cultural expectations of your customers,(Statistics New Zealand 2006). and your potential hires, and you need to prepare your workforce to address these expectations.“I had always suspected You also need to know how to recruit there was a problem; the right workforce. Successful, but then I got my proof. empowered workforces are often more diverse workforces – highly skilled, more I sent in two copies of global, and often virtual, who are able to my CV, one with my work autonomously. actual (very ethnic Research with local and international sounding) name and employers shows that cultural diversity can add to creativity, innovation, and market the other with the most access, and act as a magnet for talent – typical kiwi name I worth considering! could think of, Sarah Common recruitment and Smith. Sarah Smith got selection challenges short‑listed almost every •• Making sure your recruitment process time, but I never got a call seeks diverse talent, minimises potential for cultural bias, and gives all a fair chance using my own name.” to compete for job opportunities.Wilson et. al. (2005) •• Unpicking the skills and experience in a CV and relating them to the job at hand, to either discount an overseas worker, or identifying their potential for your organisation.© Office of Ethnic Affairs 2010 13
  17. 17. •• Realising that you may need to adapt Recommendations your interview style to help candidates to Before you start recruiting show their abilities, while at the same time •• Find the most effective way to reach your maintaining consistency across interviews. potential employees, for example:•• Understanding that the way people come –– mainstream and ethnic media. across in an interview is as much cultural –– newsletters and journals of as it is personal. If you notice behaviours professional and trade groups. you’re not familiar with, check them out –– contact with community groups and with the candidate. It’s OK to ask. cultural networks.•• Filling skill gaps by growing the skills –– websites such as Jobcafe, Career of employees with diverse ethnic Hub for university students, Career backgrounds, instead of recruiting Jet, Local Government careers, Mahi, outside an organisation. Kea (New Zealand’s Global Talent•• Making sure that recruitment is Community), My Job Space, Seek, fair, particularly when restructuring Trade Me, Working in New Zealand, an organisation. Gumtree and LinkedIn. –– let recruitment agencies know that you welcome applications from all sectorsCase study of the community.As well as lifting •• Recruit people from diverse ethnic backgrounds with skills that you need toemployee efficiency and meet your organisational goals.engagement and reducing •• Find talent by tapping into the networks of your people with diverseabsenteeism, British ethnic backgrounds.Telecommunication saw •• Work with schools, universities, polytechnics and language schools.a reduction in spending Speak at their career events, mentoron recruitment and students, run mock recruitment interviews and CV checks, and set up internships.training of new staff, •• Consider work tests and presentations toafter implementing assess an applicant’s ability.a range of diversitymanagement strategies.14 Riding the Wave
  18. 18. When planning recruitment –– be comfortable with silence –•• Find a selection panel of people with in New Zealand, we can feel diverse backgrounds who are committed uncomfortable with what we see to a fair and equitable recruitment process as awkward pauses, but for some and who are familiar with the requirements cultures, pausing is a sign of reflection. of the job you’re recruiting for. –– check your own accent and•• Tell potential applicants how you require communication style – colloquial their CV to be presented. For example, New Zealand English can be quite hard in New Zealand marital status, ages to understand. of children, and father’s name and •• Know which questions you’re not legally occupation aren’t commonly included allowed to ask at an interview. The in CVs, whereas these details can be pre‑employment guidelines ‘An A to Z for important for job applications in other Employers and Employees’ (www.hrc. countries. Career Services Rapuara co.nz) gives advice about fairness for all provides some useful advice for job applicants. job seekers. •• Let candidates bring support people•• When recruiting, make sure you have to the interview. Some people feel clear and to‑the‑point job descriptions uncomfortable talking about their and competencies, and share them with accomplishments, and rely on others to potential hires. do it on their behalf. •• Ask the candidate if they would likeInterviews feedback at the interview, and if so•• Before the interview, prepare an interview provide it. The EEO Trust Guidelines checklist with reminders to: (www.eeotrust.org.nz/toolkits/ –– use information from CVs to recruiting.cfm) have some useful tips on prompt candidates to talk about giving feedback. their experience. –– show appreciation of a candidate’s response before probing for more detail. –– be prepared to re‑phrase questions, follow them up, and probe further if necessary. –– clear up any misunderstandings as they happen.© Office of Ethnic Affairs 2010 15
  19. 19. Points to ponder Recommended reading•• How well do your candidates meet the The Office of Ethnic Affairs: key job needs? Foot in the door resource –•• Where are the gaps? www.ethnicaffairs.govt.nz•• Can you give support to someone who needs to grow their abilities? Immigration New Zealand:•• What skills can be taught on the job? A welcome that works – retaining skilled•• Do you have the resources to do this? migrants in your workplace, gives advice•• Who gets to each stage of your to employers about how to make settling recruitment processes? in easier for newcomers to New Zealand –•• How many are candidates from culturally http://www.immigration.govt.nz/community/ diverse backgrounds? stream/support/publications/welcomeworks.•• If you use psychometric testing, htm can your facilitator prove that their tools and processes are free of cultural bias? Human Rights Commission:•• If you’re having difficulty attracting job Top 10 checklist for employers of applicants from a wide range of groups, migrants – http://www.hrc.co.nz/home/hrc/ check the methods you use to hire. newsandissues/ Are they unfairly benefiting one group over another? Human Rights Commission: Brain gain, migrant workers in New Zealand report – http://www. hrc.co.nz/hrc_new/hrc/cms/files/ documents/15‑Jul‑2008_13‑13‑42_HRC_ Brain_Gain.pdf Industrial Research Limited: Beyond best practice: Industrial research Ltd IRL, Wellington, a case study – http://www.irl. cri.nz/about‑us/careers/life‑ir/relocation The Department of Labour: Immigration Service website for information for jobseekers outside New Zealand about employment in New Zealand, including how to obtain a work permit – http://www. immigration.govt.nz/migrant/stream/work16 Riding the Wave
  20. 20. Work programmesThe following work programmes offer jobseekers a foot in the door. In many cases,these mentoring and internship opportunitieshave led to permanent employment.The Internship Programme establishedby OMEGA (Opportunities for MigrantEmployment in Greater Auckland) –http://www.omega.org.nz/The Canterbury Migrant EmploymentProject offered through the CanterburyEmployers’ Chamber of Commerce –http://www.cecc.org.nz/main/Canterbury_Employment_Programme/The New Kiwis Work Experienceprogramme and the Kiwi Career Successprogramme run by the Auckland Chamberof Commerce.•• New Kiwis Work Experience – http://www. aucklandchamber.co.nz/contentlink.asp?s ection=bfit&subsection=recruitmentservic es.htm&page=NKwork_experience.htm•• Kiwi Career Success – http://www. newkiwis.co.nz/seeker/viewnews. asp?newsID=83The Wellington City Council’s Migrantand Refugee Work ExperienceProgramme – http://www.wellington.govt.nz/services/ethniccomm/migrantwork/migrantwork.htmlThe Workplace Communication forSkilled Migrants programme, VictoriaUniversity of Wellington – http://www.victoria.ac.nz/lals/eli/skilled‑migrant‑programme.aspx© Office of Ethnic Affairs 2010 17
  21. 21. Retention and succession New Zealand has a shortageMany talented and of skilled people, and we’re losing aqualified New Zealand lot of those skilled people overseas. We also have a growing population ofworkers are moving offshore New Zealanders who were born overseas.for employment – To keep our competitive edge we need to find talented people with diverse ethnicover 63,000 in 2009. backgrounds, and we need to keepStatistics NZ, Hot Off The Press International Travel those people.and Migration: February, 2010 published March 2010 So what is retention? Retention means finding ways to keep your talented people. It’s often called ‘talent management’. These are some common ways of retaining people. •• Succession and career planning – working with your employees to get them ready for their next role, and giving them opportunities to grow and develop. •• Giving the right rewards for the right reasons to the right people. •• Maintaining a great work environment. Why is it important? Retaining talented staff is important because it keeps the knowledge and skills that you’ve helped to develop in your organisation, and it reduces the need to recruit and train people to replace those who move on (which can cost a lot of money). Promoting people to succeed those people in specialist roles who retire is also important and organisations such as New Zealand Post Group are encouraging an ethnic diversity of staff as line managers. ‑ For example, it offers people of Maori descent scholarships to support them into these positions.18 Riding the Wave
  22. 22. If it isn’t already, finding people with diverse •• Find talented people from diverse ethnicethnic backgrounds and growing and backgrounds and actively develop them,retaining those people, might be a challenge looking for opportunities to promote andfor your organisation. reward them. •• Offer ethnic diversity or interculturalCommon retention and communications training to your employees – particularly tosuccession challenges your managers.•• Employees move on because their •• Introduce talented junior staff from diverse talents, skills, or knowledge aren’t used. ethnic backgrounds to your senior staff. When that happens, organisations lose •• Set up mentor programmes for people knowledge and their costs increase as from diverse ethnic backgrounds. they recruit and train replacement staff. •• Give active career planning support•• Promoting people from ethnic minorities to your people from diverse can be seen as ‘token’ (some may ethnic backgrounds. assume the promotion is based on •• Get your staff to run diversity events such ethnicity instead of merit). as ‘Lunch and Learn’ where employees•• Rewarding excellence may be seen as are treated to a diverse menu while discriminating against those not rewarded. learning about different parts of the world•• Connecting people from diverse ethnic and your initiatives. backgrounds with the right mentors and role models.•• New Zealand authorities don’t always Points to ponder accept overseas qualifications •• Who gets rewards and why? and experience. •• Do your rewards reinforce the behaviours and results that are important for your organisation?Recommendations •• Do your rewards motivate your people to•• Have a retention strategy and put your help each other to succeed? retention strategy into practice. Retaining •• Are your rewards seen as fair, simple, your ethnically diverse staff maintains your clear, and meaningful to all staff? organisation’s knowledge and skills, and •• Who are your star performers? reduces the cost of recruiting and training •• Can they mentor junior staff from diverse replacement staff. ethnic backgrounds?•• Don’t assume that your retention strategy •• What are the best ways to retain motivates all your employees, and that your junior staff from diverse they will always give you feedback one on ethnic backgrounds? one. Diversity networks and affinity groups (see employee empowerment section) are an important mechanism with which to identify staff and gauge feedback. © Office of Ethnic Affairs 2010 19
  23. 23. Recommended readingChartered Institute of Personnel and Case studyDevelopment. (2004). Recruitment, retentionand turnover 2004: A survey of the UK and Some staff from diverseIreland. London: Author. ethnic backgrounds left Digital Island to returnHayes, C. (2004, July 12). Diversity leaders– Advancing business performance through to their home country.diversity. Black Enterprise, 34(12). Digital Island encouragedKao, T., Tucket, E., & Verma, N. (2005). feedback from those staffNext‑generation talent management: Insights about their reasons for returning to their homeon how workforce trends are changing theface of talent management. Lincolnshire, IL:Hewitt Associates. countries. As a result ofNHS Institute for Innovation & Improvement. the actions taken from(2009). Access of BME (Black & Minority this feedback, DigitalEthnic) staff to senior positions in the NHS.West Midlands, UK: Author. Island’s staff felt more engaged and valued, areRace for Opportunity. (2009). Transparency more productive, and theat the heart of diversity. Pg 15. Race forOpportunity. Retrieved from www. company has reduced itsraceforopportunity.org.uk staff turnover.Taleo Corporation, (2008). Talentmanagement in a down economy. Pg 6. CA,USA: Author.20 Riding the Wave
  24. 24. Employee empowermentThe success of any organisation depends •• Perception is reality. Perceivedon its people. If your people are empowered discrimination in the workplace hasand engaged at work your organisation a significant impact on engagementwill succeed – in recruitment, retention, and empowerment.and sales. •• Employers need to make sure that people from diverse ethnic backgroundsWhat is employee are integrated into an organisation’s informal networks.empowerment? •• Micromanagement takes power awayEmployee empowerment means: from employees. Controlling all parts of•• offering employees opportunities to others’ work does not lead to employee input into decisions, participate, and be empowerment. A manager dedicated responsible which means they become to employee empowerment must know more invested in their organisation and how to delegate appropriately so that see themselves as representatives of employees feel they are entrusted to make the organisation. decisions and participate in the delivery•• encouraging entrepreneurial thinking and of outcomes. recognising and rewarding employees who take initiative.•• making sure employees have the right tools and working conditions to complete Case study their tasks and goals. Longveld set up trainingCommon employee and life‑coaching forempowerment challenges their staff when they•• Many cultures encourage subservience realised that staff often to authority instead of employee empowerment. Traditional Asian culture, doubted their own for example, values deference to authority abilities. As well as lifting figures, while Western culture expects workers to blow their own trumpets and employee engagement, question authority. suppliers and customers•• Some employers find it difficult to take have fed back positively on board employee feedback. It can be easy to ask for, but difficult to act on. Not about the changes they’ve acting on feedback reinforces the belief seen in staff. that the power belongs to managers and not employees.© Office of Ethnic Affairs 2010 21
  25. 25. Recommendations Recommended reading•• Set up a diversity manager role or form a Huyn, J. (2006). Breaking the bamboo ceiling diversity team/council/network. – Career strategies for Asians. Retrieved•• Task a staff member/team/council/ from http://knowledge.emory.edu/article. network with helping people from cfm?articleid=981 diverse ethnic backgrounds to find a sense of belonging in your organisation. Nicolson, K. (2004). Cultural diversity,•• Encourage relationship building with IBM style. Retrieved July 15, 2009 from www. groups that represent people with hrleader.net.au different ethnic backgrounds.•• Install a feedback box. Invite your people Peters, T.J. (1994). The pursuit of wow! Every to give feedback or make suggestions. person’s guide to topsy‑turvy times. New York,•• Read and consider their feedback NY: Vintage Books. and suggestions!•• Provide a forum where questions or Subramanian, M. Prof., et al (2005). Employee suggestions are responded to, like a empowerment: Is the real need for the weekly or monthly newsletter. corporates. Retrieved from http://www. indianmba.com/Faculty_Column/FC131/fc131.Points to ponder html•• Is employee empowerment important Williams & Wade‑Golden. (2006). What is a to you? chief diversity officer? Retrieved from http://•• How do you empower employees? www.workforcediversitynetwork.com/docs/•• What barriers to employee Article_goldemwilliams_WhatisaChief%20 empowerment exist in your DiversityOfficer.pdf organisation? What can you do about it?•• How are your employees recognised and rewarded for making good decisions? Case study•• Do you encourage diversity networks, and affinity groups within Beca Transportation your organisation? discovered that with a•• Do you actively encourage them to discuss and provide feedback more ethnically diverse on important issues in relation to workforce, staff engagement the business?•• Do you actively encourage your scores increased, and staff managers to seek feedback turnover decreased. from employees?22 Riding the Wave
  26. 26. Product and service design Organisations are under growing pressure toCase study improve their performance. Changes in our population require changes in the productsIBM – no surprises here: and services we provide to them, and in howclients from diverse ethnic we design those products and services.backgrounds like dealing Organisations in the public and privatewith suppliers from the spheres have reported the following results from employing a more diverse staff.same ethnic backgrounds. •• They have broader perspectives, greater innovation, and effective problem solving. •• They can reach a broader, more diverseDiverse talent = group of customers.diverse solutions. •• They’re more attractive to highly talented employees. •• They have greater flexibility, which means that people respond well to changes and perform better during times of uncertainty. Common product and service design challenges A number of studies note that when poorly managed, diversity can negatively affect performance. Diversity has been associated with stereotyping, ‘the‑in‑crowd’, conflict between staff, and staff turnover. Teams need time to adjust to an organisations diversity management approach. High performance takes time to emerge – don’t give up early in the process.© Office of Ethnic Affairs 2010 23
  27. 27. Recommendations Points to ponderIncorporating diverse perspectives into •• What are the demographics ofproduct design and services can help ensure your customers?their suitability to a wider client base, and •• What are the demographics ofcan be more effective in finding solutions. your workforce?Key outcomes of your diversity strategy •• How important is diversity managementshould include the following: for your customers?•• Actively recruit for ethnic diversity in •• Is your management team clear about your key product design teams (see the connection between your diversity recruitment and selection section). management plans and actions, Teams characterised by diversity and the profitability and efficiency of have the capability to access broader the business? Are your employees? networks of relationships and cultural •• How diverse are your product and service capital, and to bring these assets into the design, and marketing teams? innovation process. –– Are they considering•• If you’ve set up staff networks (see different perspectives? employee empowerment section) –– Are they considering your different consider utilising their feedback in the customer’s perspectives? product and service design process. •• Do you have diversity networks Diverse employees find strength and already established? security in numbers, particularly when •• Could they provide you with feedback on they are a minority in a large organisation. marketing and product design?•• Management of diverse teams can bring •• Are all your employees valued for their challenges in the early stages but will different points of view? usually lead to a more robust product or service in the long run. The challenges can be mitigated through intercultural Case study awareness training for all staff to encourage an ‘organisational’ culture of British Telecommunication’s open communication and a heightened ‘Effortless Inclusion’ strategy awareness of intercultural communication challenges that will naturally occur in any helped it to earn £217m in diverse workplace. revenue as a result of advertising campaign featuring an engineer from a diverse ethnic background.24 Riding the Wave
  28. 28. Recommended readingCox, T. & Blake. S. (1991). Managing cultural Case studydiversity: Implications for organisational Digital Island werecompetitiveness. Academy of ManagementExecutive 5: 45‑56. finding it hard to recruit. They hired three staffKonrad, A (2006). Leveraging workplacediversity in organisations. Organisation of Chinese backgroundManagement Journal; 3. pp 164‑189. for sales positions,Tsui, A. S. T. Egan & OReilly III. C.A. (1992). which created an unseenBeing different: Relational demography and opportunity to break intoorganisational attachment. AdministrativeScience Quarterly 37: 549‑579. the Chinese market in New Zealand, a marketWilliams K. Y. & OReilly III, C.A. (1998). which until then, hadDemography and diversity in organisations: Areview of 40 years of research. been poorly catered for. Since that recruitment,Recommended websites Digital Island have addedMore successful international case studiescan be viewed at http://www.business- about 300 new Chinesehumanrights.org/Links/Repository/637508 businesses and about 100 Korean businesses to their client base, and are expecting further growth.© Office of Ethnic Affairs 2010 25
  29. 29. Evaluation and monitoringWhat is it? RecommendationsMonitoring means finding ways to check •• When designing diversity managementthat your diversity management plans and plans and activities, agree on some goalsactions are running as you expected them to. or objectives that you want your plansEvaluating means finding ways to measure and actions to achieve. Think about howthe results of those plans and actions you’ll measure those goals, systemically.regularly or when they’re complete. For example, if your goal is to reduce staff turnover, how will you measure it?Why evaluate and monitor? How has this affected the diversity in your customer base? How has this affected theEvaluating how effective your diversity and level of customer satisfaction?management plans and actions are helps •• During or after staff involvement in ayour organisation to: diversity management activity, run a•• confirm the impact diversity management short survey. Check that they understood has had on your business. its purpose, ask how they felt about it,•• identify plans and actions to continue, and what could be done better next time. change, or cease. •• A few weeks after a diversity management•• identify gaps that need new plans or plan or action has been completed, meet actions to close. to evaluate its success. Use the measures you identified when planning. What wereMonitoring your plans and actions makes they then? What are they now? Ask thosesure they’re being used as intended. Regular involved in the plan or action what theymonitoring allows you to make changes thought went well, or could be improvedas required. next time. •• Put in place recommended changes!Common evaluation and •• Run an annual diversity survey and sharemonitoring challenges the results with your people and other•• Finding time and ways to evaluate interested stakeholders (like your owners and monitor! or the public).•• Diversity management strategies and initiatives can be difficult to measure.26 Riding the Wave
  30. 30. Points to ponder•• How do you monitor and evaluate your organisation’s performance now?•• How does your diversity management strategy get measured against the organisation’s performance?Recommended readingChartered Institute of Personnel andDevelopment (United Kingdom). (2005).Managing diversity: Linking theory andpractice to business performance.Tatli & Ozbilgin. (2006). Managing diversitymeasuring success. Chartered Institute ofPersonnel and Development.Jayne, M., & Dipboye, R. (2004). Leveragingdiversity to improve business performance:Research findings and recommendations fororganisations.© Office of Ethnic Affairs 2010 27
  31. 31. Conclusion – Bringing it all togetherEthnic diversity can potentially transform your Human resourcesbusiness or organisation. High performing Human resources people are critical strategiccompanies agree that active diversity partners in the design and implementationmanagement results in cost savings to of any diversity management strategies andthe business, and can drive business initiatives within your organisation. This isgrowth through: critical, for the following reasons:•• enhancing customer relations and •• Sustaining competitive advantage increases in market share. depends on optimising valuable human•• enhancing employee relations and resources. Organisations that are better reductions in the cost of labour. able to recruit, develop, retain and•• improving workforce quality and promote diverse employees have an edge. performance in terms of diverse skills, •• Talented people will be attracted to creativity, problem solving and flexibility. organisations that value their capabilities and will be more willing to investHowever, organisational culture, and the themselves in productive activity if theyleadership approach to managing diversity believe they are treated fairly and thatare critical factors to ensuring the desired career opportunities are available.results are achieved. In this resource we’vediscussed seven areas of business practicecritical to managing ethnic diversity, and to Recruitment and selectionensuring your organisational culture takes Finding the best person for the job mayadvantage of this potential. depend on how widely you cast your net. An effective diversity management strategyLeadership and management should ensure that your recruitment and selection processes open the doors toSuccessful leadership and management diversity within your organisation or business.ensures that diversity is a key component in Ethnic diversity initiatives in particular should:the organisation’s strategy – it is an attitude •• acknowledge and mitigate againstfor how business is done, a business goal, the systemic barriers such as a lackand a business strategy. When leaders of recognition of qualifications andactively support the organisation’s diversity experiences gained overseas andinitiatives, and make resources available inadequate advertising of vacancies.for them, it will promote an organisational •• acknowledge and mitigate naturalculture of cultural awareness and prejudices such as perceived differenceintercultural competence. (appearance, accent, name, religion) and lack of knowledge about different cultures, their protocols and behaviours.28 Riding the Wave
  32. 32. Retention and succession Evaluation and monitoringplanning Measuring the efficiency of ethnic diversityFinding, growing, holding on to, and promoting plans and actions is not as difficult astalented staff, including those from ethnic it sounds. You are probably alreadybackgrounds, is more important now than ever. measuring a number of indicators inDon’t assume that all people are motivated your business such as market share,in the same ways and have the same employee satisfaction, and customerexpectations for rewards. Ethnic diversity is satisfaction. Diversity managementabout recognising difference. Ethnic diversity initiatives have an effect on all these areas.management is about tapping into that Clarify the objectives that you wish todifference for a business advantage. achieve from your diversity management initiatives and incorporate them into your reporting systems.Employee empowermentWhen employees are valued they become Effective diversity management is differentempowered to make decisions and take for all organisations, and these principlesresponsibility for their work, meaning better have worked well for organisations of allproductivity. For ethnically diverse staff in sizes. If in doubt, you may like to contacta large organisation, diversity networks, external organisations who specialiseand recognition of their difference plays an in the area of diversity management toimportant role in employees feeling empowered. advise you. This can range from private consultants, public sector organisationsProduct and service design such as the Office of Ethnic Affairs orWhen the five previous business areas are the Department of Labour Employmentaddressed effectively, this can result in a Relations team, to publicly fundedcompany culture where all employees feel organisations such as the EEO Trust.valued, recognized and empowered. This allowsethnic diversity within an organisation to providethe impetus for innovative product developmentand service delivery, to develop higher qualityproducts and services to reach broadermarkets. When an organisational culture isone that actively seeks and values the differentperspectives that diversity brings, the result ispotentially transformational. This can take sometime, but if the organisational culture is right,and your employees are supported, this willmitigate the risks.  © Office of Ethnic Affairs 2010 29
  33. 33. Case studies32 Riding the Wave
  34. 34. Case studies introduction These overviews give good insight into theThe following pages type of challenges the organisations faced,provide an overview of the benefits they gained, and the processes they put in place.eight award‑winningNew Zealand The organisations offer a cross‑section of New Zealand businesses, both in size,organisations, and and type. You’re likely to find similaritiesfour international with your organisation somewhere in these case studies.organisations that havebenefited from puttingin place diversitymanagement plansand actions.© Office of Ethnic Affairs 2010 33
  35. 35. Beca Transportation In the early 2000s, Beca faced a globalBeca’s Transportation unit shortage of engineers. While countries like the UK and South Africa had traditionallyis based in Auckland and has provided Beca with migrant workers,around 50 full‑time employees. Beca’s Transportation team found that aNew Zealand‑headquartered number of workers from these countries only stayed a short time before returningBeca is one of the largest home. This meant frequent recruitmentprivately‑owned engineering with high, unsustainable company costs. The company decided to deal withconsultancies in the Asia skill shortages by both improving thePacific region, with over recruitment processes and by targeting2,400 employees new countries for people who were top talent and shared the values ofoperational worldwide. the company. What Beca Transportation did •• Accessed a broader talent pool by hiring people from a variety of countries. •• Uncovered the needs and concerns of their new employees, and then tackled them. •• Established a confidence‑building programme, providing tools for the success of all staff. •• Managed employee expectations during interviews so that people get a clear idea of what to expect from Beca Transportation as their employer and New Zealand as a place to live. •• Analysed the recruitment process to better assess and meet the needs of candidates and based on this developed a top recruitment brand. •• Managed expectations by outlining professional development opportunities and delivering on what they’ve promised.34 Riding the Wave
  36. 36. •• Organised social events, mindful of What were Beca’s challenges? cultural differences, such as having •• Beca Transportation thought that their non‑alcoholic drinks available and hosting model of using diversity to grow profits yum‑cha lunches. would spread across Beca but this has•• Looked at how employees worked as a been slow. Despite great results it takes team under pressure and provided tools substantial extra time and commitment to support them. from managers to start and sustain a•• Arranged a programme that explained diversity‑focussed programme. how to succeed at Beca Transportation. •• Senior staff needed to review and rewrite•• Brought in a consultant to work as an reports of staff whose English was not up English tutor and, since then, have used to scratch. her skills to improve their management of •• Staff reported uncertainty about how to staff of diverse ethnic backgrounds. work in New Zealand’s workplace culture and how to be successful in it.What’s happened as a result?•• All these programmes were successful. What Beca Transportation They created new opportunities, new recommend ideas, and new understanding about how to deal with issues. •• Understanding the expectations of new•• Beca Transportation built their business staff is critical. by bringing in more top talent than others, •• Believe that managing diversity is an which meant securing more contracts. investment and that it makes good•• For every $1 Beca invested in managing business sense. their diverse workforce, they returned $5 to shareholders through staff growth and retention.•• Staff engagement scores increased.•• Over a four‑year period new‑employee turnover halved.•• With more overseas staff, the company was better equipped to help other migrant staff.© Office of Ethnic Affairs 2010 35
  37. 37. Damwatch What Damwatch doDamwatch is a niche Damwatch is open to an ethnic diversityconsultancy engineering of staff being recruited globally usingfirm based in Wellington, the dam engineering network and its business contacts. It supports overseasspecialising in dam staff by:engineering, safety and •• paying relocation costs, and for the first few weeks of accommodation.surveillance. The company •• organising meetings with theis owned by Meridian Energy. Wellington City Settlement SupportIt employs 30.5 Full‑time Officer for new overseas staff. •• having an existing staff member as(FTE) personnel, of which, a 24‑hour contact person in case of27.5 are technical staff. emergencies and accidents to assistDamwatch has a history of with transport/support. •• extending invitations to new staff toemploying ethnically diverse attend people’s homes for BBQs andstaff from overseas (with a social events.few recruited also from within •• holding social gatherings, run by a social committee, headed byNew Zealand) as engineering overseas‑born staff.skills are not always availablein New Zealand.Approximately one‑thirdof staff are from overseasbackgrounds including Irish,English, French, Slovakian,Chinese, American,Australian, and German.Most overseas‑born staff aresingle, and as such thereare few if any family‑relatedsettlement pressures.36 Riding the Wave
  38. 38. What has happened as a result? What do Damwatch•• Growth has increased by 10 to 15 recommend? per cent. •• You don’t have to ‘smother’ new•• The organisation has more culture specific arrivals but be sensitive to their needs, knowledge – a possible asset when and offer support. working overseas.•• Overseas staff bring new and different perspectives.•• Overseas staff have brought vitality to the company.•• Overseas staff have helped the New Zealand staff see themselves with fresh eyes.•• Some overseas staff have brought new contacts in a specialised field.•• Young people seem to blend in quickly at work and into life in New Zealand without too much difficulty.What were Damwatch’schallenges?•• The financial cost of recruiting overseas staff for Damwatch is up to $50,000 per candidate.•• Candidates might not work out.•• Immigration and visa processes can delay candidates from starting work.•• Cultural and person differences required a different management approach for several student internships.© Office of Ethnic Affairs 2010 37
  39. 39. Digital Island Because of a tight employment market,Digital Island was Digital Island initially hired three staff ofestablished in 2004. It is Chinese background for sales positions. This created an unseen opportunity fora New Zealand owned Digital Island to break into the Chinesetelecommunications market in New Zealand, a market poorly catered for. They discovered thatprovider to businesses speaking the native tongue of their clients,in New Zealand. and doing business face‑to‑face instead of telemarketing, appealed to Chinese ex‑pats.Digital Island is basedin Auckland and Once the company became aware of the competitive advantages it started intentionallyhas 22 full‑time staff. investing in diversity initiatives. They decided to take the same approach with Korean staff. What Digital Island did •• Hired Mandarin speaking staff for Mandarin‑speaking customers. •• On learning that many Chinese customers wanted assurance that Digital Island was a safe and reputable company, they took the trouble to provide references. •• Recognising the preference of Chinese customers to deal to face, they provided the sales team with company cars. •• Placed a lot of advertisements in Chinese directories and at Chinese expos. •• Hired three Korean sales staff and one Fijian Indian employee and encouraged them to network with their community groups. •• Empowered sales staff to provide management with ideas of what their ethnic minority customers need.38 Riding the Wave
  40. 40. What happened as a result? What Digital Island recommend•• A business growth of approximately •• Put in place customer driven 10 per cent by acquiring new customer diversity initiatives. markets (about 300 new Chinese •• Realise that overall, it’s no more expensive businesses and about 100 Korean to hire migrants than Kiwis. Digital Island businesses so far). had to sponsor a couple of work permits,•• Product suppliers see Digital Island as a but at a cost of about $5,000, the company that can supply their products benefits outweighed the cost. to markets that they themselves are •• Don’t cut corners when it comes to finding difficult to reach. people management, pay and treat•• Absenteeism and staff turnover staff right. decreased. •• Choose the right staff and hire on merit•• Overall, their staff are more not on what is familiar. conscientiousness and have a higher level •• Advertise widely to attract a broader pool of skills and education (often from local of talent. tertiary institutions). •• Ask current and potential customers what they would need and like fromWhat were Digital Island’s your business. •• Create opportunities for employeechallenges? feedback and consider that feedback•• Handling immigration rules, regulations, when it comes to improving your services. and details required for work permits. •• See diversity as an investment in your•• Ascertaining reasons behind an business, not a cost. employees move to New Zealand and the level of commitment to the job.•• Finding employees with a standard of English suitable for good communication.© Office of Ethnic Affairs 2010 39
  41. 41. Longveld Engineering An ongoing shortage of semi‑skilled andLongveld Engineering are qualified staff had seen the company previously hiring the only available staff,stainless steel specialists rather than the best. This had led toand certified welders and a number of problems so Longveldhave been operating since Engineering decided to focus on hiring the right staff even if that meant hiring1992. Currently they have from overseas.about 60 staff (although What Longveld didthey are planning to •• Shaped the organisational culturedouble this in the next in a way that was based on12 months). About one respect, and would accommodate individual needs.third of the team come •• Recruited from overseas.from overseas. •• Brought in leadership training to help cause organisational culture change. •• Strengthened human resources practices (like recruitment) to better meet the needs of people from diverse ethnic backgrounds. ‑ •• Set up a whanau culture, where relationships promote business. •• Ran personalised training, development, numeracy, and literacy programmes. •• Raised the bar on acceptable standards of behaviour and trained supervisors to manage this objectively. •• Set in place middle management communication training. •• Offered flexible leave arrangements and fully funded study opportunities. •• Benchmarked pay rates and set these in the upper quartile.40 Riding the Wave
  42. 42. What happened as a result? What Longveld recommend•• Hiring staff based on merit, and providing •• Invest in best practice HR systems and training, has raised the standard of staff train all supervisors to use these on a and increased company productivity. day‑to‑day basis.•• Staff conflict has decreased. •• Being culturally aware does not mean•• Respect for cultural differences and having different rules for different people, greater self‑awareness has led to better but teach your team to understand the communication, increased motivation, and universal values of respect and empathy. a happier work environment. •• Accept that not all initiatives cost money,•• Confidence to expand operations and many that do are an investment overseas has increased. rather than an expense.•• Client feedback to changes has been •• Understand the motivations and needs of extremely positive. each staff member to get them on board. This trickles down to a better service forWhat were Longveld’s your customers and a high loyalty factor from your staff.challenges?•• Succession planning. Many trade staff find the transition from floor to supervisor a difficult one – they often lack confidence that they can do it.•• Finding workers with diverse skills. Overseas workers tend to specialise, whereas New Zealand’s small economy needs and expects a variety of skills.•• Different cultural expectations which could cause, for example, an older, less experienced person to refuse orders from a younger, more experienced person.© Office of Ethnic Affairs 2010 41