Here are the top news stories in talent & organization from this week.

Great leadership is about transforming others

“Great leadership is not about you, it’s about the impact you have on others,” argues Gene Hammett in this Inc blog post. He outlines the four qualities of transformational leadership: 1. Transforming others to grow teams from the inside out. 2. Inspiring confidence by focusing on learning instead of failures. 3. Transferring courage to have tough conversations and take up new strategies. 4. Transforming commitment to work by inspiring passion for the goals and mission of the organization. Hammett suggests having one-on-one conversations with employees about their fears and doubts in their work. “I treat these conversations more like a coaching session than a meeting to delegate new tasks, which makes my team feel appreciated,” he writes. “This results in a shift in their confidence, courage and commitment.”

Engage millennials at work with more conversations

For Ashira Prossack, the secret to engaging millennials in the workplace is having more conversations with them. In this Women@Forbes blog post, she highlights two types of conversations that would provide millennials with the help they need to develop and grow within their roles: informal check-ins and goal-setting sessions. “The informal check-in helps to mitigate problems and challenges. If you catch a problem early on, it’s much easier to rectify than if it’s been going on for months,” Prossack writes. “Check-ins allow you to keep a pulse on your team and gauge things like employee productivity and team morale.” These meetings do not have to be held in person, but can be done virtually via video calls and messaging. The informal check-ins should occur at least twice month, while the goal-setting sessions should be held quarterly. “Goal setting sessions are crucial for helping your employees reach their potential and continue growing with the company,” she writes. “It also helps you identify which employees are ready to take on more responsibility.” 

To drive innovation, improve gender diversity

According to Ravi Saligram, CEO of Ritchie Bros., diversity in the workforce not only brings a rich flavor to an organization, but also is a must to drive innovation. “Unfortunately, gender discrimination, whether conscious or unconscious, may get in the way and leave a business dull and bland,” he writes in this Chief Executive op-ed piece. Saligram cites a Harvard Business Review study, which found a statistically significant relationship between diversity and innovation. According to the study, companies with above-average diversity also have higher innovation revenues. “This serves as a proof point for the need for a robust and proactive diversity and inclusion plan,” he writes. “A diverse culture can help guard against group think, increase the scale of new insights and identify the right employees who can tackle a company’s most pressing problems.” Saligram believes change must start at the top, by adding more women to senior management roles and leadership positions. He also lists several other recommendations to improve gender diversity across the workforce. “Having a commitment to providing an environment where all employees are treated with fairness and respect and have equal access to opportunities for advancement based on merit, skills and aptitude is the path forward. It starts at the top, but it must cascade, with consistency, throughout the organization to stir the pot and create a flavorful stew that is the catalyst for long-term change,” he concludes.

Today’s top talent looks for social, corporate values

“Millennials give greater weight to a company’s social mission–or lack thereof–when deciding whether to buy from or work for a certain company. It’s no longer enough for a company’s HR strategy to hinge on spun PR, a few photo-ops and campus visits, while throwing money and short-term perks at new recruits,” writes Yuri Kruman in this Entrepreneur guest column. In the competitive race for top talent, he believes companies need to optimize the employee experience (EX) to remain compelling to millennials. He recommends elevating the EX by personalizing salary and benefits packages for each employee, while adding other strategic perks. “Beyond this, founders must create a mission-centered culture of transparency with clear organizational values,” he writes. “They should encourage optimal utilization of talent internally by facilitating internal mobility, opportunity creation and side-project involvement by employees.” Kruman also underscores the importance of diversity for building a better employer brand. “This starts with hiring under-represented talent that thinks, works and sees the world differently than over-represented demographics–then getting out of their way, so they can do their best work and help your brand access new markets and customers, to create new revenue,” he writes.

For more news related to gender equality in the workforce, see our news page here.

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