SHRM South Asia Blog

Reflections: Employee Relations (Part 2): Industrial Unrest In 2014

This is the second part of a three series of blog-posts. I have divided this note according to subject. The earlier blog post spoke of strikes and lockouts in 2014 and this one features stories of industrial unrest.

We begin with the story of ING Vysya.

ING Vysya - Kotak Mahindra Bank Merger Deal

On January 7, while the deal was to be presented for shareholder approval, the unions, which represent 35% of the employees, were intending to go on strike. Why? The fear was obvious. They wanted an agreement to be signed between the two corporates and...


Reflections: Employee Relations (Part 1): Strikes and Lockouts in 2014

Reflecting on past events is essential. It enables us to understand trends and varying points of view. It also lays out issues clearly before us. And hopefully it helps us to learn and find a better way, moving ahead.

“Follow effective action with quiet reflection. From the quiet reflection will come even more effective action”, said Peter Drucker.

So let us review ‘Employee Relations’ in 2014. This is the first part of a three part series of blog-posts. I have divided this note according to subject. The current blog post focuses on ‘Strikes and Lockouts in 2014’

I have not...


Employee Engagement: The Role of Leadership

Employee Engagement: The Role of Leadership

In my last SHRM blog as a Subject Matter Expert, “HR Processes for Employee Engagement” I ended with a caveat that the quality and tonality of Employee Engagement cascades directly from the leadership of the company. HR interventions can enhance the positive effects or reduce the negative effects of leadership and often does both. So, it is important for the HR Professional to be acutely tuned to the leadership culture and flow with it, at the same time, working to improve the leadership itself.

What leadership does?
As an example, I would like...


Emotional Intelligence and Attrition

Yes, we are a generation of job hoppers. Yes, we don’t think of “stability” as a cool word. Yes, we believe in “moving on” to greener pastures. But is that what we really are at heart? A bunch of Bedouins forever gazing down the horizon raring to get back on the road?

As seen in most movies, each of us reach decisions, on one hand, derived after putting our brains into it; while on the other side, by being led by our hearts. Research in “Employee Hiring and Attrition” suggests that whilst most employees take up a job role based...


Cultural Anchors of Employee Engagement

Cultural Anchors of Employee Engagement

I have a French friend who creates wine out of his vineyards in south of France and knows a lot about these things. He says that the beginning of a great wine is the “terroir” or ground (including geography, climate, ‘sense of land’) from where the grapes come. No amount of great winemaking can make up if you started with grape that came from a poor quality “terroir”. So also, the greatest of Employee Engagement initiatives can get lost if we do not invest in the right values, competent HR leadership and build the capability...


Contours of Employee Engagement – Clarifying Meanings and Interfaces

Why do we need a deeper understanding of Engagement?
That which can be understood, measured and assessed, can be managed. This is especially true of the elusive phenomenon called ‘Employee Engagement.”In my previous blogpost, I wrote about how an engaged employee is one whose energies and talents are aligned to the larger goals and mission of the company. Through this second blogpost in the series, we will continue our journey of understanding employee engagement by mapping its contours, clarifying meanings of associated terms, and understanding the interface dynamics at various points in the organization.

I am doing this with the...


Changing Paradigm of Employee Relations

The subject of this blog is 'Changing Paradigm of Employee Relations.' As I thought about this subject, I realizedthere are four key aspects to it. So, let me begin by sharing these with you as I 'set the approach'. I will then move on to other details.

Setting the Approach

Firstly 'Employee Relations' [ER] is about the relationship between an employer and his employee, both individually and collectively. This relationship begins with the contract of employment or what we call the 'Appointment Letter,' and usually ends with his resignation letter, or what HR Managers call the 'Disappointment Letter' in a...


Building a Revolutionary Organization

Under influence of the belief that "good is the opposite of bad", mankind has for centuries been fixated with fault-finding, weaknesses and failings. Doctors have investigated the causes of diseases in order to learn about health. Psychiatrists and psychologists have investigated sadness in order to learn about joy. Organizations have investigated their "areas of development" or "weaknesses" in order to develop and make themselves better places to work. And not only this, right from childhood we have been asked by our parents, teachers, colleagues or bosses to "fix" our weaknesses, to understand our 'weaknesses', so as to become stronger.



Ask The Right Questions, To Get The Right Answers

A friend of mine recently went for an interview at a leading MNC. I was sure she would get the job as she has always been a high performer in the past, was exceptionally good during college, is smart and holds a charming personality. But, to my surprise, she did not.


Because she gave the right answers, but to the wrong questions!

Let's face it, since so many years and for so many years to come, job interviewers have been and are going to be untrained at interviewing. The reality is, in business, employees should be paid for what...


Appreciative Inquiry: Getting It Right

The mid monsoon forum meet in Pune was all about changing 'point of view'. Suman Nair, a seasoned Human Resources facilitator, demonstrated how practicing a simple technique can change focus: from seeking to overcome the weaknesses in an organization, to appreciating and leveraging the core strength of the organization.
Ms. Nair is Managing Director at Atiitya Training and HR Consultants Pvt. Ltd. In the last two decades, she has worked extensively in the Human Resources space in companies like The Ion Exchange, Pantaloons, Tracmail, GE Capital and Mastek.

Defining AI
Speaking on Appreciative Inquiry (AI), Nair talked about operating in...