Creating Healthy Organizations by Graham Lowe

Redesiging Work A Blueprint for Canada's Future Well-being and Prosperity
Now Available!

Creating Healthy Organizations by Graham Lowe

Creating Healthy Organizations Graham's new book describes how to strengthen the links between people and performance.

Creating Healthy Organizations The Wellness Dividend

How employers can improve employees health and productivity.

Author Graham Lowe's keynote talk on How Vibrant Workplaces Inspire Employees

Watch Graham Lowe's talk at the 2014 ComCare National Conference, Melbourne, Australia

News from May 2003

OECD urges countries to reverse the trend to early retirement
(May. 20 '03)
In a series of country case studies, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development documents that unless the trend to early retirement is reversed, labour shortages will increase, economic growth will slow, and welfare costs (through state pensions) will rise. Keeping workers over the age of 50 in the labour market longer therefore must become a major public policy goal.
New poll finds work-life balance is the mark of career success
(May. 14 '03)
Katherine Harding's insightful article in May 7th's Globe and Mail discusses findings from a new Ipsos-Reid poll, which asked 1,000 Canadians to list their top indicator of personal career success from a list of eight options, including salary level and job title. Work-life balance was overwhelmingly the top selection at 30 per cent. Next came job challenge, followed by level of responsibility, and advancement opportunities. Salary was well down the list. The question asked respondents what they considered the top indicator of success in their own career -- which is different than asking what they value most in a job, or what they actually have achieved in their career or job. Also see Katherine's companion article on "Success redefined ".
Aging workforce a drain on productivity according to new CD Howe Institute report
(May. 14 '03)
A May 2003 commentary published by the CD Howe Institute, entitled Slowing down with age: the ominous implications of workforce aging for Canadian living standards, argues that because older workers are less productive and work fewer hours than younger workers, economic growth and living standards will suffer as the workforce ages.
New Statistics Canada study examines determinants of workplace training
(May. 14 '03)
The most recent research study based on Statistics Canada's Workplace and Employee Survey examines a range of factors influencing workplace training. The study confirms findings from earlier research, but does add new insights about classroom vs. on-the-job training, comparisons of both employee and employer perspectives, and differences in training activities by workplace size. The 96 page report is available in pdf free from Statistics Canada (click above).
Study documents how Fortune 500 firms support part-time professionals
(May. 14 '03)
A study by research and consulting firm Best Practices, LLC, reveals how top organizations structure flexible work schedules that complement employees' varying needs. The study, Employee Retention: Managing the Part-Time Professional, examines how 22 Fortune 500 companies use flex-time, compressed workweeks, job sharing and telecommuting to accommodate employees.
What's efficiency got to do with job satisfaction?
(May. 5 '03)
According to a new survey of workers in a dozen US cities sponsored by the office equipment company, IKON, the kind of office technology affects efficiency, and also is related to job satisfaction. Workers in more efficient offices tended to be more satisfied.
Debate over lifting of mandatory retirement heats up in Canada
(May. 5 '03)
National Post article raises interesting issues in the growing debate about mandatory retirement at 65. Who will want, or need, to keep working beyond age 65?
Human capital crisis in US government workforce is overstated
(May. 5 '03)
It is generally accepted that governments in North America face a human capital crisis as baby boomers retire in droves, and that this problem is compounded by governments' archaic management systems. This thinking may be wrong, however. A review of US federal workforce statistics, recent agency experiences and observations by federal human resource directors reveals that the human capital crisis has been overstated. In fact, the US government often is awash in qualified candidates, no American industry can claim a lower turnover rate than the federal government, and the expected wave of retirements won't be as bad as people think. When it comes to human capital, it may be that other employers have something to learn from the federal government.
US Conference Board report emphasizes the need to retain key older workers
(May. 4 '03)
Companies will face a severe shortage of badly needed skills in this decade, unless they act now to entice top-performing older employees to delay their retirements, according to a report by the Conference Board (New York).
IT executive documents stressful working conditions
(May. 4 '03)
In the May issue of CIO Magazine, an IT executive tells the story of his own stress-related breakdown and recovery, and reveals what other IT managers can do to avoid the problem.
Will a basic 3 week vacation entltlement for full-time employees dull America's competitive edge?
(May. 4 '03)
A campaigin in the US to increase minimum vacation time for full-time employees to 3 weeks faces an up-hill struggle. Americans are working longer hours, in contrast to many European countries where vacation time is being increased to improve quality of life. The key question is: which approach contributes more to productivity and innovation?
Work-life balance policies fall victim to IT sector downturn, UK study finds
(May. 2 '03)
A study by a UK consulting firms suggests that IT employes, and employees, view work-life balance policies as a frill, and that this is a result of the sector's downturn. Job security and training have become more important for attracting and retaining staff.
Restaurant workers' low levels of job satisfaction bad for business, new study finds
(May. 2 '03)
A new study, published in the Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Research, surveyed 798 non-supervisory employees in one US chain of restaurants. Finding surprisingly low levels of satisfaction, the researchers suggest management needs to do more to empower these employees, or customer service could suffer.
Financial services industry not moving fast enough on sexual discrimination and harassment
(May. 2 '03)
Reports from Wall Steet suggest that the US financial services sector has not acted on the problems of sexual discrimination and harassment, despite a string of law suits and numerous complaints to the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. This challenges the claims of some firms in the industry that gender equality is one element of becoming an employer of choice.
Future of American Airlines depends on rebuilding employee trust
(May. 1 '03)
Following restructuring and wage roll-backs, the major task facing management at American Airlines is creating a higher level of trust with all employee groups. This case, and the unfolding events at Air Canada, underscore the importance of employee-management trust in corporate restructuring. On American Airlines and trust, also see: