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Master Facilitator: Prof Sattar Bawany, Strategic Advisor, IPMA Asia Pacific
Date: Tuesday, 8 January 2013
Venue: Cinnamon Grand Hotel, Colombo, Sri Lanka
Organiser: Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA), Sri Lanka
Governments around the world are committed to raising productivity to improve economic performance. As the research of the McKinsey Global Institute (MGI) has demonstrated repeatedly over the past decade, productivity at the sector level is driven by the degree to which companies are exposed to competition. Hence, the argument goes, governments should remove barriers to competition, such as excessive regulation, if higher productivity is the goal.
Future growth in Singapore lies in increasing productivity in every sector and innovation in serving export markets. But what exactly is productivity within the context of an organisation? What is innovation? Can these concepts be measured, what processes and skills are needed to become world class in productivity and innovation management? What can we learn from global players like Apple, Google, South West Airlines and others?
The subject of employee engagement as a measure of productivity and management strategies to increase engagement have been hot topics since the original Gallup organization research was published. While most of the research identifies low levels of employee engagement in many organizations and strategies to increase that engagement for the purpose of improving productivity, the cause-and-effect relationship is not overwhelming. Rather, an overarching strategy of increasing employee well-being in which engagement strategies are incorporated, appears to be more favourable.
The Gallup organization defined employee engagement as "an employee's involvement with, commitment to, and satisfaction with work." Research conducted in the past decade has shown that employee engagement has declined significantly in most industries, with some research citing as few as 29% of employees being actively engaged in their jobs. The Hay Group found in its research that in among office workers who were actively engaged, they were 43% more productive. Various research studies have shown that the following factors influence employee engagement: Employers' commitment to and concern for employee welfare; employee perceptions of job importance; clarity of job expectations; career advancement opportunities; regular dialogue with superiors; quality of working relationships with co-workers and superiors; perceptions of the ethos and values of the organization; and employee rewards and recognition.
Organisations struggle with the challenges of effectively managing a more diverse workforce. These challenges often relate to variation in perspective, values and belief systems as a result of generational differences and are further complicated due to the age differences between managers and employees.
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