National People Management and Development (Part 3)

Human ingenuity is infinite when translating power and discretion into personal gain… We allowed the courts to treat proof that an accused was living beyond his or her means or had property his or her income could not explain as corroborating evidence that the accused had accepted or obtained a bribe. – Lee Kuan Yew   How they kept the Govt Clean We conclude our three-part summary of the book From Third to First Worldby Lee Kuan Yew, hoping to glean insights for our use as a nation in transition. “When the PAP govt took office in 1959, we set … [Read more...]

National People Management and Development (Part 1)

“What is it I am trying to do? I am trying to create in a Third World situation, a First World oasis. I am not following any prescription given to me by any theoretician on democracy or whatever. I work from first principles, what will get me there: social peace and stability within the country; no fight between the races and the religions or whatever; fair share for everybody. I want investment. I’ve got nothing except skilled manpower and infrastructure. I build up infrastructure. I educate the people. We have the best educated work force anywhere in … [Read more...]

Linking People, Strategy and Performance

  “The greatest concern here is that, in the New Economy, human capital is the foundation of value creation. (Various studies show that up to 85 percent of a corporation’s value is based on intangible assets). This presents an interesting dilemma: the asset that is most important is the least understood, least prone to measurement, and hence, least susceptible to management. Clearly, we are at a watershed”(ref.The HR Scorecard, Brian E. Becker et al). If we are to resolve this dilemma, HR leaders and practitioners, being custodians of the people … [Read more...]

Leading Employees in High Emotional Times

High emotional times, or crisis times, have hit people in different parts of the world at different times in the last plus-ten years.These have ranged from the ones caused by natural disasters (hurricanes, floods, thunderstorms etc) to man-made or man-influenced variants (bomb-blasts, kidnappings, intra-company recession, industry recession etc). It had been more common to hear of them in other lands than around Nigeria but that seems to have changed now. Business leaders and Human Resource practitioners need to awaken to the fact that some of our … [Read more...]

Motivation 3.0 – Understanding Motivation in the Blackberry Age

What we know about motivation came from the 1900s through the likes of Frederick Winslow Taylor, who invented what he called “scientific management”. Now this is the puzzle. Over the century (1900-2012), the world has morphed in so many ways that we can’t resist asking if what we know about motivating people isn’t ‘outdated, unexamined, and rooted more in folklore than in [modern] science’. Daniel Pink in his book, Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us, provides in easy to read prose, a most audacious and thought-provoking expose of ‘what … [Read more...]

How Employee Happiness Impacts Organisational Performance (2)

 This is the second part of this article, you can read the first part here. Acting on Feelings – Strong settings vs Weak settings Although all of us have feelings and attitudes about many aspects of our organisational work, we do not always act on them. Whether we do, or do not, act on our feelings and attitudes in a particular situation can be clarified by distinguishing between strong and weak settings. Strong settings are those with powerful normative expectations and incentives to behave in certain constrained ways. Weak settings are ones in … [Read more...]

How Employee Happiness Impacts Organisational Performance

The question of whether happy workers are more productive than unhappy ones has spawned decades of research exploring every kind of happiness and possible variation in job performance. There are many reasons for perennial popularity of what has bee called the happy productive-worker thesis (making workers happy cause them to be more productive): it allows labour negotiators to claim that happier workers will be more productive (so deserving higher pay), it allows human resources professionals and researchers to be supportive of both labour and … [Read more...]