Human Resources Training, Virtual Team management

Colleagues of the Future will be From Virtual Teams



With the myriad changes sweeping the workplace, virtual teams look like the New Economy phenomenon that is here to stay. Organizations need to implement the right policies to get the most out of this system.

The most visible and most powerful technological tool of the recent past, the Internet, has brought about changes on a scale and dimension that is, to put mildly, phenomenal. This present-day revolution has spawned many by-products, among which the virtual workplace is one. A virtual team is quite easily understood, as can be inferred from the term:

  • They are linked via the Internet and any member of the team may be located in any part of the world
  • It is a team whose members don’t work in a common location such as an office
  • Virtual teams do not meet each other on a day-to-day basis
  • They are bound together by a common organizational goal, but not always by common work schedules
  • Virtual teams work in different shifts based on their geographical location

Advantages of Having Virtual Teams

Virtual teams evolved precisely because they carry a few distinct advantages for people who take part in it.

  • They save its participants enormous commuting time, which can be used constructively for work
  • Virtual teams save the organization substantial amounts of money on transportation costs for employees who need to be plied to office on a daily basis
  • Very importantly, an organization that has a policy of facilitating virtual teams can draw the best global talents from those people who cannot or are unwilling to relocate
  • They engender better work-life balance of members of virtual teams, since such employees get to spend a good deal of time at home.

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employee performance evaluation, employee training, Human Resources Training

Employees Can be Coached for High Performance


Coaching for high performance is like coaching for any other skill. Employees can be handpicked and chosen for high performance, leading to better outcomes for the organization

There are many faculties and abilities we are all born with. Experts believe that some of these are natural, while others need to be inculcated by constant effort and practice. Whether leadership is natural or acquired has been a major debate among experts in the field of management, business, psychology, sociology and the like.

The core purpose any organization is to get the best out of its employees. Organizations can imbibe skills in their employees, leading them to improved performance.

Benefits of High Performance Coaching

When an organization’s employees undergo coaching for high performance, there is a palpable change in behavior, as a result of which there are conspicuous benefits:

  • Improved overall productivity from team members;
  • Greater consistency in performance from everyone;
  • Increase in the desire to perform better at all levels;
  • Reduction in negativity in the professional environment;
  • Greater realization of individual potential;
  • Increase in the competency and confidence levels of employees

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Employee Retention, Human Resources Training

Effective Strategies for Improving Employee Retention


Employee retention is one of the biggest challenges for an organization. Retaining talented employees is all the more so. In a booming economy or in an industry flush with growth opportunities, employees are prone to jumping jobs. Talented employees need no such factors. They are very much sought after in the industry which makes them coveted and valued.

The need for retaining employees cannot be overstated:

  • Employee turnover has a negative impact on the ROI, the organizational reputation and the business plans
  • The cost of hiring new employees is much higher than retaining
  • Employees staying on with organizations are truly motivated. Otherwise, they would not stay. A motivated employee is a highly productive one
  • Employee retention is a sign that the morale of the organization is high.

Effective strategies for improving employee retention

Team Of Businessman Building Bar Chart

Given the importance of retaining employees, it follows that organizations would want to devise effective strategies for improving employee retention. What are these? Are these strategies going to help organizations retain employees in the long run? Let us look at some of the effective strategies for improving employee retention:

Create the right working conditions

No-brainer, this. A three-year old knows that the means to retaining employees is in creating the right working conditions. But here is the catch: organizations that retain employees go that extra mile in creating conditions that make them feel like working for the company. In addition to the usual benefits such as pay, benefits and other perks, effective strategies for improving employee retention include paying attention to the emotional needs of the employees. How about offering a mother the opportunity to work from home even if it could cause a small inconvenience to the team? Steps like this are sure to make the employee not only stay with the organization, but also be a grateful one at that.

Make them involved


Another of the effective strategies for improving employee retention is in making employees engaged with the organization. Employee engagement is not a tool, but a weapon in employee retention. When do employees become engaged ones? Only when they feel they are part of the organization’s decision-making process, right? Not all employees can be pulled into decision-making engagement, but for those who are not at that cadre, other ways of engagement can be devised, like getting their feedback or opinion about important decisions, which will make them feel important and treasured.

Cultivate transparency

There is no substitute for honesty. The managements in many organizations keep things to themselves. While this may be necessary at times in some situations, when it comes to core organizational matters, there is no substitute for honesty. Honesty counts as one of the effective strategies for improving employee retention because when employees feel that the management is not opaque and is not holding back important things from them, it endears them to the organization.

Recognize and appreciate

Recognition and appreciation are among the most elementary of human needs. The employee who receives these from the organization is sure to reward it back with her loyalty. Managements should do these naturally and sincerely and never with an ulterior motive. Sincere recognition and appreciation of good work is a sure motivator and a major one among the effective strategies for improving employee retention.



Create opportunities to learn and to teach what they learn

Learning on the job is one of the true requirements for any employee in an organization. The more one learns, the more she grows. The more she gets the feeling that the organization is making efforts to augment her desire for learning, the more she stays connected with the organization. A variant of this strategy is to encourage employees to share this learning with others in the organization, which will make them feel more respected and responsible.

Make them feel like business partners


The highest form of employee engagement is not making employees feel they are part of the organization as employees, but as partners. The employee who shares the vision of the management for the organization feels it is her own organization she is working for. For this to happen, the employee and the employer should be on the same page and on the same wavelength. They should have the same vision for the organization and know what they can do to help it realize this. It is only when employees are made to feel that they are part of the organization’s core that they feel they are partners in progress. This should rate as the most effective of strategies for improving employee retention.

Career Development

Strategies for Successful Career Development


Talent management is that critical management skill that really defines an organization after all. But then, talent management does not happen in a vacuum. If the organization is to be successful at its talent acquisition and talent management endeavors, it must create the right career development ecosystem for it. Well thought out strategies should go into creating this ecosystem.

This career development ecosystem should be an integrated one, into which many elements need to go in. Once the top management devises the right method for putting this ecosystem in place; it helps the organization tap the strength of its resources in executing its business goals.

It happens only in a positive organizational culture


The starting point of this strategy for building an integrated ecosystem for talent acquisition and retention is the creation of a sound organizational culture. It is this culture that creates the milieu for the ecosystem to be built and developed. This culture is a prerequisite for equipping employees with the tools they need for realizing their full potential with the organization. The basis to all this is active employee engagement, the absence of which neutralizes and negates everything that the integrated ecosystem can achieve.

What are the ways and approaches for building this integrated ecosystem in which organizations’ employees feel engaged and are aligned to the organizational culture and goals, and love to work for the organization? Connect with TrainHR for gaining more knowledge about Successful career development.

Successful career development has seven crucial elements


Understand the strategies for creating an integrated ecosystem which facilitates the career development of the employees. Producing a highly engaged and motivated workforce whose talent the organization utilizes to its fullest, and retaining this workforce is the result this ecosystem should yield. The creation of such as career development strategy has as many as seven core elements.

This integrated ecosystem is set in the background of the present-day trend in the job market, in which keeping in mind the difficulty in finding and retaining talent, organizations are building backup bench strength to prepare for talent departure that happens at short notice. Such exits are more common, given the hurry in which fresh blood is eager to seek out opportunities.

Through these seven elements, learn the ways by which to attract, nurture and retain top talent in the organization:

  • The components of a Career Development Ecosystem
  • How to create a shared understanding of career development in your organization
  • How to get managers to support career development, have career conversations, and develop people on the job
  • How to motivate managers to become talent developers vs. talent hoarders
  • How to encourage employees to take ownership for their own career development
  • How to use career development as part of a powerful employment brand to attract the best talent
  • Recommendations for job-related online career assessments
  • Content to include in a self-service career development portal
  • Specific career development approaches for Gen Y employees, including tools to level set promotion expectations
  • Enterprise-wide software that can be utilized for talent visibility throughout the organization
  • The role of external and internal career coaches
  • Financial outcomes with case studies from implementing effective career development programs.

Struggling with Career Development? connect with TrainHR for better career development tips

hr best practices, hr policies, hr training, Human Resources Training

Putting a Performance Appraisal Toolbox in Place Helps


A performance appraisal toolbox is an objective checklist of the ingredients that go into an appraisal. Managers have to learn what to put into this toolbox.

An appraisal is a headache for any manager. Yet, despite its being a delicate task; no manager can escape from it. Appraisals could make or mar employees’ careers. From an employee’s perspective, getting a raise that is not proportionate to her work done during the year is a bad appraisal. From the organization’s standpoint, a bad appraisal is one that rewards employees that the management thinks are poor performers. So, how does the manager draw the line? The solution is the performance appraisal toolbox.

What is a Performance Appraisal Toolbox?

In simple terms, a performance appraisal toolbox is a set of parameters that managers use to measure performance from their subordinates. They use these parameters to continually assess employees from time to time and compile to arrive at one final figure at the time of the employee’s appraisal.

A performance appraisal toolbox is a good way to arrive at a fair evaluation after measuring traits like attitude, behavior and effort for accomplishing tasks. It eliminates the aspect of impetuosity in decision-making, since it is carried out over a period of time.

Components of a Performance Appraisal Toolbox

  • Managers need to be equipped with the skills to plan, write, and execute a performance appraisal document
  • Managers have to set realistic goals for their employees and measure performance in relation to these
  • In evaluating, managers have to ensure legal compliance and help employees set performance goals
  • Appraisals have to be give-and-take discussions rather than being one-sided
  • A performance appraisal toolbox should help deal with negative behavior from the employee
  • The toolbox should enable employees to assess their own performance, set goals, and develop new skills, knowledge and competencies

Ways to Prepare a Performance Appraisal Toolbox

Ideally, a performance appraisal toolbox should be prepared by the manager keeping these items in mind:


hr best practices, hr policies, Human Resources Training

Employee Performance Documentation is a vital cog in the wheel


Employee performance documentation, when done appropriately, is a key tool that facilitates HR in taking important employee-oriented decisions.

Employee performance documentation is an important tool that management uses to help employees improve their performance:

  • It defines the job and expected results
  • Helps zero in on the ideal processes needed for accomplishing results
  • Sets out performance-related goals and objectives
  • Recognizes what skills and talent from which employee needs to be developed
  • Helps to put a proper rewards and recognition program in place

A valuable tool for appraisals

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Documenting employees’ performance and behavior on a regular basis helps management and HR build up a solid, legally sound record of the employee’s performance. This can be a powerful tool for appraisals.

Solid safeguard against potential employee retaliation

In addition to helping organizations reward good performers and track the bad apples in the lot; employee performance documentation can also be used as a strong weapon if an employee litigates against the organization. This is because properly done performance documentation can help establish that actions from the employer were based on performance alone, and not based on prejudices relating to gender, race, color or any other.

Example of a template for employee performance documentation

  • Employee Name: _____________________
  • Title: __________
  • This conversation is intended to be:
  • During 90-day Probation; ______
  • Recognition
  • Coaching & Counseling
  • Formal Level of Discipline: (Verbal Warning, Written Warning, Objective Met, Suspension, Terminations, etc.) or other
  • Describe:_______________________________________________________________________________
    NOTE: If you checked during 90-day Probation, you must also check Positive Contact, Recognition or Coaching and Counseling.
  • (A)Facts:Be specific and focus on behavior. Provide date, time, what you observed, etc.______________________
  • (B)Objectives:Can you use the job description to set specific, realistic, and measurable expectations?_____________________________________________________________________________________
  • (C)Solutions:What solutions will you and/or the employee take to meet the objectives?_____________________________________________________________________________________
  • (D)Actions:Specify timeline, next meeting date, and what actions could be taken if the employee does not meet the objectives. _____________________________________________________________________________________
  • Prepared by: __________________________/_____________________
  • Printed Name
    Employee: Signature

The following points are thus important for preparing employee performance documentation:Facts of the performance documentation;

  • Objectives of the employee performance documentation.
  • Solutions suggested;
  • Actions to be taken.

Elements of a good employee performance documentation system

  • Make notes as soon as the need for it arises and file it with the requisite person, especially HR;
  • Never postpone documentation, because as time passes, its purpose or intensity may dilute;
  • Never forget to mention date and time and sign, because not doing it will have the same effect as in the point mentioned above;
  • Make employee performance documentation notes in a number of mediums such as notes, discussions with concerned managers or employees, email, PDA’s, and so on.

To conclude, there HR needs to be aware of a few nuances in documenting employee performance and has to cascade these down to key decision makers. An interesting, interactive learning session (link to webinar here) can help them implement this.

hr best practices, hr policies, hr training, Human Resources Training

Retaining Key Employees is Very Critical for Organizations

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The driving force of all organizations is talent. The employee with talent is the organization’s key resource. This being the case, it is incumbent on the organization to do its best to retain such a resource. Retaining key employees is critical for organizations because the loss of good employees hurts it in many ways.

  • It deprives the organization of the vital contributions from a talented employee;
  • This reflects poorly on the management’s image with clients it does business with;
  • It gives the competition that hires such an employee the edge.

    Ways by which Employers can Retain Key Employees