Introduction of GDPR

Quite rightly the ability of marketing companies, charity fundraisers etc has been curbed with the introduction of the new General Data Protection Regulations – the EU initiative being introduced in May 2018.

 

We have read the tragic results of elderly people being hounded to suicide through incessant calls by charity fundraisers.  These charities had brought personal data from other sources without the individual’s knowledge.

 

I get that having legal terms and disclaimer on websites where the fact data can be sold is in place  (out of sight, out of mind maybe?) but how many people read the small print on websites?

 

No one should be able to sell someone else’s data on full stop.

 

But what about organisations who make no money but help people on their journey into work.  If they are prohibited by GDPR legislation from keeping details on file, how do they defend themselves if a malicious claim is made?  Without documented evidence there is no defence.

 

What’s the solutions?  Break the GDPR regulations or be open to abuse?

 

Im not at all sure……….

Is there a block with employers recognising the value of ideas from those working for them?

Most definitely! Is my conclusion….

 

On Growing Talent, everyone is technically unemployed and training in a vacant role which is their provisional job offer if they complete.  Very quickly, most who are enthused and see the value of this opportunity, will quickly see fresh ways of ‘upselling’ their ’employer’s’ goods/services.

 

From what I’ve seen, these ‘fresh eyes’ and therefore ideas are usually dismissed without investigation.  It seems to me employers see ‘unemployed’ rather than ‘human with ideas that could work’!  Why is that?

 

Like him or loathe him Gordon Ramsey’s Kitchen Nightmares include a segment of a new menu which me makes everyone taste and get to know.  This way, everyone can sell those dishes, give information to customers which in return will positively hit the bottom line.  It also ensures the individual is involved and enthused about the restaurant.

 

What an idea!  Ensure all staff know your values, products/services, reason for being……..

 

Maybe it’s time for some employers to think a different way?

 

I was reminded of this by Simon Sinek talking on YouTube about the Puerperal Fever deaths of the 1800s – known as childbed fever in which both mother and child died.  It was discovered the fever was caused by infection delivered by doctors.  At this point in time, medicine had graduated to investigation and understanding so autopsies were carried out.  Unfortunately, hand washing and tool sanitisation wasn’t!  Doctors would carry out autopsies in the morning then deliver babies in the afternoon without washing their hands.  However, pride that they were the cause meant no change happened for decades!  What a difference if looking at the idea of washing hands and giving it a try would have made.

 

For me there are similarities with employers who won’t listen to new ideas.  Keep doing the same thing.  Keep getting the same result.

 

International Women’s Day – what does it mean to you?

To me it’s a time to respect those women who everyday work hard to deliver real change to benefit others.  If can be someone locally running a drop in club for new mothers – who are naturally terrified of the responsibility  – to people like Helen Taylor Thompson – 93yrs young who was a spy in WWII, set up the first AIDS hospice in Europe and now works in using technology in the treatment of AIDS patients.

 

No matter how small their impact is on our lives, for me, it’s about telling them!

 

I am honoured to work with some amazing people on Growing Talent (www.growing-talent.co.uk).  Today I received an email from one of them who was on the programme over 2 years ago to thank me for my support.  I’m still buzzing!

 

Happy international women’s day!! Thanks for encouraging me to seek counselling and stay strong, it’s what got me through a lot and still keeps me going. Had to thank you once again in light of today as it’s what inspires me to stay strong so I can encourage other women one day.’

 

Why not use this auspicious day to tell those women who inspire you, about the impact they have had on you.  You’ll make their day and give solid meaning to #IWD2018!

8 months – what a transformation…..

Whilst in the London office, I bumped into Phil – one of the Mitie managers in Service Solutions – seen on the right with Jamie ex-Growing Talent Associate.

 

Phil selected Jamie in July 2017 on the 13th programme.  Jamie had never held a permanent, full-time role but had a strong work ethic.  He was really confident at home and with friends, but it was a different story in the corporate glass building that  he would be based in.

 

Jamie picked up the role really quickly.  He has been so supportive of his team from day 1 that when it came to the annual Graduation in December, Jamie didn’t stick around for the adulation and photos.  He wanted to get back to his team as they were so busy with the Christmas rush!

 

Today, I bumped into Phil who gave a glowing report on Jamie. ‘He always works late if necessary, supports the team and even covered two departments on his own.  He really is up there with the great personalities  we’ve had on Growing Talent’.

 

It’s lovely to hear how well everyone continues to do.  Jamie truly is a fab role model for others to follow.

‘Sacrifice People to save numbers’

I came across this quote whilst reading work by Simon Sinek – the renowned motivational speaker – check him out on YouTube.

 

We’ve all seen companies downsize their staff in turbulent financial times with no thought about the impact on those individuals, their families nor the overall drop in moral on the staff they keep.

 

Even when there isn’t a financial downturn, companies will often shred staff to reduce their payroll bill and thus increase their profits – more palatable for the shareholders – or is it?

 

I worked for a company for over 12 years.  Just before the financial reporting, a round of redundancies would be announced to ensure the company retained it’s double digit growth.  In reality, they haven’t grown at all.  All they had done was culled their staff.

 

Simon’s point was what would happen if companies did the reverse? ‘Sacrificed the numbers to save the people’ – what a thought.  The example he gave was of Bob Chapman Chair of Barry-Wehmiller in USA.  This company was a £1bn plus turnover and made big machinery.  In the 2008 financial crash he decided to ‘sacrifice the numbers to save the people’.   With 30% written of the company’s value in one fail swoop – it was time to try something new.

 

He suggested everyone – from himself downwards, would take four weeks unpaid holiday.  They didn’t have to take it consecutively and they could take it when they wanted but everyone would keep their jobs.  The response was huge.  Those senior people who could afford to take more unpaid leave traded with those that couldn’t.  Everyone worked as a family, pulling together.  They were involved in the decision, given the support to do it and felt safe and happy.  The company prospered.  It enjoys 20% year on year growth compared with the average 6%.

 

When you believe in why you are doing something, everything else falls into place.  People support you because they believe in the same thing.

 

Wouldn’t it be refreshing if all companies ‘Sacrificed the numbers for the people’?

 

How much more would their profits grow?  What do you think?

Challenging The Mindset – WiFM 2018

British Institute of Facilities Management (BIFM) run an annual event for women in FM.  This year’s was focussed on Mental Health in the Workplace – Challenging The Mindset.

 

It was my first time.  The day was well structured  with diverse speakers with plenty of networking opportunities.

 

Unfortunately, I could only stay for the morning session. Opened by the Chair of Women in FM, Jackie Furey, the scene was set for an intensive learning session with over 100 delegates in the room.

 

Of course the AV gremlins were in force and every speaker had the test of dealing with rogue sound and spinning slides – which they all did with excellent grace.  I wondered if this was deliberate as it certainly broke the ice!

 

Jackie introduced Louise Ashton, Wellbeing Director from BiTC.  Louise fired off a lot of stats, policy etc but a disappointment for me was no mention of signposting for suicide.  People don’t need to know the stats they need to know what to do.  So in the Q&A session, I shared the excellent free add #StayAlive which gives step by step guidance and signposting.

 

Next was Asa Bjornberg who uses horses in her unique and interesting work.  Asa shared her journey from being an expert at McKinsey & Company to becoming a clinical psychologist and coach using horses in her leadership and development programmes. Asa also shared some of her personal exposure t mental health and recovery.  Hugely innovative and interesting session.

 

Bianca Angelico followed Asa.  She is Deputy Chair of Women in FM and an exec manager at Sodexo.  She shared a heart rendering experience made all the more human and poignant by her dad in the audience who had travelled from the family home in South Africa to support Bianca.

 

Karen Shaw – passionate Employer Programme Manager from the excellent Time To Change spoke about their role, their work in removing stigma at work and encouraging all to sign the Time to Change Pledge.

 

Lauren Trent a recruitment consultant with Trust in SODA made some in the audience reach for the Kleenex again.  She was one of the people involved in the acid throwing by Arthur Collins.  Her visible concern for her friend who was with her on the night and more disfigured was permeable.  Lauren enabled the audience to know what the life long journey is for someone affected by this horrendous trend to use corrosive substances as weapons and the confusion on the night with a lack of help from the nightclub, the horror of having her family over an hour away and the pain for them.  Lauren spoke about the training needed for everyone on what to do in an acid attack.

 

Graham Bird, Workplace Director at Where we Work gave a funny, presentation on how to look after ourselves in the workplace which held the interest and resulted in much note taking.

 

The final speaker of the morning session was Lucy Jeynes, MD of Larch Consulting and Co-Founder of Women in FM.  The reaction of Lucy’s colleagues and peers in the audience was most startling as she revealed the mental health issue that had impacted her family, the pressure of holding it together in the workplace and supporting everyone around which no one knew about.  For me this illustrated the often hidden impact of Mental Health – trying to carry on at work as though everything was ok.  Her talk started off with a member of her family experiencing cyber bullying – a 24/7 issue that never stops…. Various stages of Mental Health decline followed until ultimately the worst case scenario was attempted but luckily unsuccessful.  Lucy shared some interesting stats – 40% of bullying is via social media, 30% is in on-line gaming platforms and 30% on instant messaging.  It’s more subtle in the workplace with ‘Frenenemies’ – pretending to be your friend but in reality they are your enemy – these offer advice and then exclude totally undermining self confidence.  Cyber bullying continues even when schools, work, location is changed.  There is a campaign to stand-up to this ‘Stop, Speak, Support’

 

An incredibly interesting event.

 

 

Social Mobility – What is it exactly?

I was thinking about this the other day.  Maybe my definition is different to others….

 

So what prompted this thought?  I’d been invited by a global financial services organisation with a multi £bn turnover and global presence to share my work with their Social Mobility team.

 

During this meeting I explained how I devised and run Growing Talent which has got over 120 people from the ranks of the unemployed into permanent jobs which they have flourished in.  Over four years, many have returned to encourage those following them and shared how much Growing Talent had changed their lives.  Some have started their own business.

 

I gave many examples from graduates who had no direction, self belief nor understanding of what the world of employment looked like to people like Richard – mid 30s, never worked – who not only completed the programme but has been employed for over two years now.

 

People on Growing Talent come from all social backgrounds including the homeless, single parents, people who have experienced mental health issues and so on.

 

With nurturing and encouragement they have secured employment, got savings, taken back control of their lives and have immense self-belief.  To me, this is social mobility.

 

At the end of the meeting, the Social Mobility team said Growing Talent was good but what about clothes?  Clothes do not bring about change.  A mindset, encouragement into work and self belief do as my evidence shows.

 

So what does Social Mobility mean to you?  Is it a new set of clothes or is it giving the tools to someone to literally change their lives?

 

I sincerely hope the money being invested into these Social Mobility teams actually delivers real change and doesn’t just become a tick box exercise….

Meet Growing Talent 16’s Head Judge

A long-time supporter of Growing Talent, Allen often gives-up his time to preside over the Growing Talent Social Enterprise Challenge.

 

These are ideas selected Growing Talent Associates devise and present to a panel of managers from their employer companies during their first week of Growing Talent – no pressure then!

 

At the end of each presentation, collective feedback is given before the Head judge delivers the verdict and prize.

 

The ideas have to benefit a local community, have a revenue stream and be easy to maintain.  The ideas presented in the past have always been innovative and well thought out.

 

I don’t doubt this will be the case on Friday 9 February! – check back to find out…….

Businesses – want to multiple your profits by 3?

The link below – which you’ll need to cut and paste into your browser – features some interesting research from Soma Analytics.

 

HRH Prince Harry asked in a radio broadcast what affect mental health had on business. The financial cost has been well known for years as has the human cost on individuals, colleagues, families, line management etc.

 

Soma Analytics research showed  two out of three UK large businesses do not publish their mental health strategy and support for their staff in their Annual Reports.  More startling was businesses that did publish this information saw their profits increase by three times!

 

It’s well known if you look after your staff, your staff will look after your customers and business with grow and profits increase.  So why is business so reluctant to publish what they do in their Annual Reports?

 

There is no health without good mental health…….

 

Check out the feature for yourself.  What do you think?

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-42512723

 

 

18 December 2017 – what a night!

GROUP

Seen above are some of the 27 Growing Talent Graduates of 2017 after receiving their Graduation prize – a logo’d fitbit from Jon and Steve of PwC centre rear.

 

A fabulous evening of catch-up for the Graduates – some had not seen each other for almost a year!

 

Of course, it was off to the pub for liquid refreshments shortly after this was taken – very well deserved!

 

Well done to all of you………

 

What will 2018 bring?

 

More information at http://www.growing-talent.co.uk…….