Queen's University IRC

Interview

The Myth of Body Language as a Credibility Assessor

The Myth of Body Language as a Credibility Assessor

Workplace investigators and human resource professionals should be cautious of relying on the body language of a witness to evaluate their credibility during an investigation. Fact-finding investigations, especially in cases of harassment, at times turn into an evaluation of one person’s version of events versus another’s, or as some call it, the “he said, she said” dilemma. In these cases, assessing the credibility of the two parties may be the easiest way the investigator can come to any defensible determination relative to credibility.

Reducing Participant Stress Before a Workplace Investigation

Reducing Participant Stress Before a Workplace Investigation

It is normal for participants in a workplace investigation to feel some anxiety, but too much worrying can create barriers to obtaining critical information, which is a challenge for investigators looking to build complete and thorough reports. Ensuring participants fully understand the process and their role in it can help alleviate unnecessary anxiety during the investigation. With a greater understanding of the process, participants can feel empowered to speak confidently in the interview and provide the investigator with the necessary information.

Workplace Restoration Q&A with Anne Grant

Workplace Restoration Q&A with Anne Grant

Queen’s IRC sat down with Anne Grant, the facilitator for our new Workplace Restoration program, to find out more about the topic and the program. In the interview, Anne shares her experience in workplace restorations, including the surprises she’s had along the way. She gives some insight into what makes workplaces toxic and how this program will help organizations that are experiencing disruptions like prolonged conflicts, increased harassment or grievance claims, leadership issues, strikes, investigations or significant organizational changes.

5 Insights into Conducting Effective Fact-Finding Investigations

5 Insights into Conducting Effective Fact-Finding Investigations

Fact-finding is an essential skill set for anybody who is in an HR, labour relations or employee relations role. If you stay in this role, at some point you will end up doing investigations, and having this skill set is going to make you much more efficient as a practitioner. Jerry Christensen, who recently retired from the City of Calgary, managed and coordinated the City’s respectful workplace program and dealt with all of their human rights issues.

Clark MacFarlane, Executive Director, CMHA – Cochrane-Timiskaming Branch

Exploring Senior Leadership in the Canadian Mental Health Association

Clark MacFarlane has over twenty years of experience in the health care sector, and is currently the executive director of the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) – Cochrane-Timiskaming Branch, in northern Ontario. CMHA branches provide direct service to people who are experiencing mental illness, and to their families. They are in the process of implementing a new service delivery model, which shifts from traditional treatment methods to a recovery approach.

Lori Aselstine

Inside HR at the Ontario Public Service

In April 2014, as Lori Aselstine began her retirement from the Government of Ontario, she sat down with Queen’s IRC to talk about her career, the HR profession and practising HR in an environment that is 85% unionized. Lori talks candidly about her experience rising through the ranks in the Government of Ontario, as well as the challenges and opportunities that come from working in labour relations for the government, which often plays the role of the employer and legislator.

Alison Hill, Queen's IRC Research Associate

Exploring the HR Profession in Denmark

In August 2011, I moved from Kingston, Ontario, to Copenhagen, Denmark. I've been fortunate to continue working remotely for the IRC while living in Europe. The past five months have been a learning experience, as I've continued to transition and adjust to work and life in a foreign country.

A Western Canadian Perspective on the HR Profession in Canada

Todd den Engelsen is currently the Director of Organizational Development with Canyon Technical Services limited. He is Chair of the Human Resource Institute of Alberta (HRIA). Queen’s IRC Research Associate, Alison Hill, spoke with Todd to hear his perspectives on the role of the HR profession, and the challenges that lie ahead. Todd believes that …

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SwitchPoints: Culture Change on the Fast Track to Business Success

When it comes to leading organizational change, Peter Edwards and his team at the Canadian National Railway walk their talk. In their publication SwitchPoints, Edwards and co-authors Les Dakens of CN, and Judy Johnson and Ned Morse of the Continuous Learning Group (CLG), describe how CN advanced from good to great in a few short …

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SwitchPoints: Culture Change on the Fast Track to Business Success

When it comes to leading organizational change, Peter Edwards and his team at the Canadian National Railway walk their talk. In their publication SwitchPoints, Edwards and co-authors Les Dakens of CN, and Judy Johnson and Ned Morse of the Continuous Learning Group (CLG), describe how CN advanced from good to great in a few short …

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The Current and Future State of Human Resources Leadership

In December 2008, Hilary Sirman of Queen’s IRC spoke with Antoinette Blunt, President of Ironside Consulting Services Inc. and President of the Human Resources Professional Association of Ontario, about the current and future state of the Human Resources profession. Amidst increasing global competition, wars for talent, economic uncertainty and generational differences in the workforce, human …

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Accommodating Disability in the wake of Keays v. Honda Canada

Employers may be relieved now that the Supreme Court of Canada has reversed steep punitive damages in a high-profile wrongful dismissal case involving a disabled worker. But accommodating the needs of employees who have disabilities – in particular depression – is not getting any easier, says Queen’s IRC Facilitator Anthony Griffin. Griffin is counsel for …

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Ready for Risky Business?

For human resources professionals, risk readiness means more than just planning for management departures, says Queen’s IRC facilitator Yvonne Latta. Yvonne is a consultant and former senior executive with 31 years in the federal public service, including directorships of HR at Transport Canada and Strategic Business Planning at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. In this article, …

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Bah Kumbaya

Respect, not superficial goodwill, is the key to inspired teamwork, says Dr. Shawna O’Grady, Associate Professor of Management at Queen’s School of Business. Great teams work hard at keeping members aligned and making the most of creative conflict. We spoke recently with Shawna about the challenges of creating and sustaining a collaborative work environment. When …

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The Rigour of Requisite Organization

Requisite Organization (RO) is a science-based management theory that traces organizational dysfunction to poor structure and systems rather than underperforming employees. According to RO adherents, the way to fix dysfunction is to fix the system. That means having crystal clear management accountability, setting compensation and employee capability to job complexity, and ensuring the proper number …

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In Conversation with Bernard Mayer

How can organizational leaders help to create healthy, conflict-friendly workplaces? Bernard Mayer, a Queen’s IRC Facilitator who is an international expert in conflict resolution and mediation, shares insights for managers in the following Q & A. What is a ‘conflict-friendly’ environment? The key here is to acknowledge that organizations, communities and relationships need conflict. It …

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Lessons for Leaders in Engaging Employees

Employee engagement is a top HR priority for the Ontario Public Service (OPS), says Richard McKinnell, a senior OPS manager and the 2006 Amethyst Fellow at the Queen’s University School of Policy Studies. Richard – former Assistant Deputy Minister in Corporate Services Division, and a Director of Communications for several ministries, including the Centre for …

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Leveraging Your Learning Power

We spoke to an educational dream-team about best practices in facilitating learning – and harnessing new knowledge to help overcome an organization’s most pressing challenges. Sharing their views are Allyson Thomson of the Ontario Ministry of Finance; her executive sponsor Assistant Deputy Minister Marion Crane; and Queen’s IRC Facilitator Brenda Barker Scott. Allyson Thompson, Senior …

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Strategic Human Resource Management: A Practitioner’s Point of View

As an HR practitioner dedicated to the profession, Debbie Bennett, CHRP, currently serves as Vice Chair of HRPAO, having previously served for three years as Chair of the Professional Standards Committee where she was instrumental in the adoption of national standards. Debbie chairs the Governance Task Force and regularly attends the meetings of the Audit …

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