Queen's University IRC

Research Briefs – September 2019

Queen's University IRC - Research Briefs

   Bringing Practitioner-Focused Research to People Management Practitioners

Sept 2019   

 

 
 

In This Issue…

  1. Strategy or Culture? What’s Your Leadership Challenge?
  2. HR and Manager Partnerships: Building Accountability in the Workplace
  3. Flashback Feature:
    The State of the Union Movement in Canada: The Challenges We Face and the Innovations We Must Undertake
  Queen's University Campus 
 

Strategy or Culture? What’s Your Leadership Challenge?
Romi Boucher and Kate Sikerbol, 2019

Change was in the wind. As is true for many industries, the insurance industry was facing significant change. Making the shift from a regulated to a deregulated industry seemed a daunting challenge for the 100 year old RockSolid Insurance Company.

The question for the executive team was how to craft a strategy and initiate change in ways that would enable the company to compete successfully into the future. Despite facing potentially massive disruption, one department, the Tax Department, decided to use this as an opportunity to reflect on their values, strategic goals, and departmental culture. In this article we present a case study and share some thoughts on one of the toughest challenges leaders face, the interplay between successful strategy implementation, and shifting organizational culture.

Leaders are typically quite adept at crafting strategy because of the direct relationship between strategy and results. Strategy provides direction, clarity, and focus for collective action and decision making. Strategy connects people and what they do in their day to day work with the organization’s purpose and broader impact in the world. Without a strategy that is clear, relevant, and valid, it can be difficult to motivate and mobilize people to work toward and achieve, concrete goals.

>> Download Article
 

HR and Manager Partnerships: Building Accountability in the Workplace
Sandi Cardillo, Queen's IRC Facilitator, 2019

Rayna had just received an interesting request. J.B., a recent addition to the front-line management team, had come to her following the division wide quarterly town hall update. The division president, Anne, had given a talk on accountability. She’d been firm in her resolve to increase division wide understanding of what it meant to be accountable at work. J.B. wasn’t questioning the directive. He was struggling with the meaning. What did accountability mean for him as a manager?

“Rayna,” he said. “In my last job we talked a lot about a culture of responsiveness. We gave a lot of lip service to building good teams, but in the end, it was really all about getting things done – fast. There was a lot of blaming; nobody wanted to be the one to holding the bag. It was about covering your backside – always.”

“Ugh,” said Rayna. “That must have been tough. We are trying hard to be different here. Anne is all about building a healthy workplace. She wants people to feel good about coming to work.“

>> Download Article
 

Flashback Feature:
The State of the Union Movement in Canada: The Challenges We Face and the Innovations We Must Undertake
Buzz Hargrove, Don Wood Lecture Series, 2006

Buzz Hargrove, National President of the National Automobile, Aerospace, Transportation and General Workers Union of Canada (CAW-TCA Canada), reviews the challenging situation in which the Canadian labour movement finds itself today, tallies strengths and weaknesses, and calls for the union movement to be more innovative in addressing those challenges and weaknesses.

The Don Wood Lecture in Industrial Relations was established by friends of W. Donald Wood to honour his outstanding contribution to Canadian industrial relations. Dr Wood was Director of the Industrial Relations Centre from 1960 to 1985, and the first Director of the School of Industrial Relations, established in 1983. The lecture brings to Queen's University distinguished individuals who have made an important contribution to industrial relations in Canada or other countries.

>> Download Article

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   

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Managing Unionized Environments
Sept 17-19, 2019
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Nov 26-28, 2019
Toronto

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Kingston

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Organization Development Foundations
Sept 24-27, 2019
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Change Management
Oct 1-3, 2019
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HR Metrics and Analytics
Oct 1-3, 2019
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Mastering Fact-Finding and Investigation
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Linking HR Strategy to Business Strategy
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Performance Management
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Workplace Restoration
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Negotiation Skills
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Organizational Design
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Coaching Skills
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Talent Management
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Building Trust in the Workplace
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Strategic Workforce Planning
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Strategies for Workplace Conflicts
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Halifax

Designing Collaborative Workplaces
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Strategic Grievance Handling
Dec 3-6, 2019
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