· 2 min read · News

CIPD Day 2: Roundup

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The whole HR editorial team was at the CIPD Annual Conference in Manchester. As well as the main stories on today’s news bulletin, here is what else we learnt on the second day:

  • Being a manager at Facebook doesn't involve a promotion. Jeff Turner, head of EMEA L&D at the social network, said this ensures managers are those who actually want to manage people, rather than those feeling forced into management for career progression. "If being a manager isn't for you, get out," he said. "You and your organisation will be happier." He said managers were often the "unsung heroes" in companies but added: "A bad manager can undo all the good work HR does. A manager always trumps the brand."
  • BBC Worldwide has created such high levels of trust in the organisation, executives are given live 360 feedback sessions. People director Kirstin Furber said trust was crucial for having those "challenging conversations" but said the interventions had been "very powerful". She added BBC Worldwide also set up two-way mentoring relationships. "If a senior executive has an issue, they could ask a junior member of staff for advice rather than phone a consultant," she said. "The information is often there in the organisation."
  • Inji Duducu, former HR director of troubled insurance firm CPP, told the conference how HR was instrumental in maintaining high performance during massive change, as the company struggled to stay afloat. "We moved from a sales and revenue focus to being customer and people-centric," she said. "We changed the culture and DNA." As part of the culture overhaul, a new era of transparency involved weekly blogs from the CEO, who also personally called up members of staff to congratulate them on doing a good job. "It was magic stuff," said Duducu.
  • 'Confanger' is our new favourite word. HR magazine's HR director of the year, Penguin Random House's Neil Morrison used the made-up word, a combination of 'confusion' and 'anger', to describe how some employees felt before the merger of Penguin Random House was officially announced. The leadership team are merely "caretakers of the organisation", Morrison added. "We want to leave Penguin Random House better than we found it," he said. "The mindset is one of creating future success."
  • Kevin Croft, director of people and organisational development, Epsom and St Helier NHS Trust, called on employers to create a culture where it's normal for staff to speak with senior management. He said the language from senior management doesn't prevent workers from different backgrounds and education from progressing.
  • According to HR director of pharmaceutical firm AbbVie, Mark Naidicz, appreciation is the "biggest lever" for engagement. He said employees "love" monetary and non-monetary rewards but instant appreciation of what your employees are doing will mean a lot more to them.
  • Lloyds Banking Group HRD Kate Guthrie told an audience the role HR is playing to implement a huge cultural shift in a bank in which engagement levels were rock bottom following the banking crisis. She explained the bank had gone from a federalised company to a largely controlled centralised one. One method the bank used was annual 360 reviews for all managers to help them better connect with staff.
  • KFC UK and Ireland VP of HR James Watts explained how the fast food chain identified talent for key development roles across the world. He said it is important to segment your workforce, and make the roles core to business strategy. "We live 24 months in the future when it comes to talent hiring," he said.