August 5, 2008

Google – Brain Drain

Filed under: Brain Drain, Latest Trends in HR, Organization Culture — Tags: , , — hrcases @ 10:59 am

Google Inc. is an American public corporation. It earns revenue from advertising related to its Internet search, web-based e-mail, online mapping, office productivity, social networking, and video sharing services as well as selling advertising-free versions of the same technologies.

The company was co-founded by Larry Page and Sergey Bring while they were students at Stanford University. Its initial public offering made it worth US$23 billion.

Google has continued its growth through a series of new product developments, acquisitions, and partnerships. Environmentalism, philanthropy, and positive employee relations have been important tenets during Google’s growth, the latter resulting in being identified multiple times as Fortune Magazine’s #1 Best Place to Work.

In recent times, Google has witnessed a loss of high profile departures, including Sheryl Sandburg who moved to Facebook and Doug Merrill who joined EMI. Earlier, executives such as Ethan Beard and Chris Sacca also moved away from the Organization. However, over all Google still continues to suck talent with more than 6,000 employees joining it last year.

The company is now witnessing a drain of some of its entrepreneurial energy that drove its early growth. Some former Google Executives believe that the company has lost two vital ingredients of its culture: the anything-goes approach of a start-up environment and the chance to strike it rich. Thus, the fading of its start-up culture poses threat for Google’s ability to attract and retain the right sort of talent.


July 26, 2008

India Prefers Male Bosses – An ASSOCHAM Report

Its official now, we prefer male boss over a female boss. ASSOCHAM (The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry in India) recently concluded the survey – “Preference of Bosses in Emerging Corporate Culture” which declares that more than 68% men and women prefer male bosses at their work.

The survey result which was based on the 2,500 executives feedback suggest that about 68 percent showed preference for male bosses saying male bosses give more operational freedom at work and are faster in decision-making, while the remaining 32 percent did not have any preference. More interestingly, of the 68 percent executives who voted for male bosses, two-thirds were female. The respondents argued that women approach work with more emotion than men. Also, motherhood and family responsibilities keep them from accomplishing assigned work leading to discontentment among the juniors.

The study also shows that women in the workplace do not just prefer male bosses over female bosses; they also feel more comfortable with male co-workers. Men choices were more evenly split, with 17 percent choosing male co-workers and 16 percent choosing female co-workers.

The survey, which comprised 67 per cent women and 33 per cent men, also found out:

• Women have to work twice as hard to prove themselves.
• Women picked a male boss rather than a female boss,
• More men would rather work for men than women; 50 percent of men chose a male boss and 12 percent picked a female boss
• Most women, 77 percent, agree that it is still difficult for women to get ahead in the workplace; only 43 percent of men feels that way.
• A majority of women, 56 percent, feel that at one time or another they have been disadvantaged in the workplace because of their gender, while 25 percent of men feel the same way.
• The better the bosses, the longer the stability factor is yet another key findings of the survey. On working with strict bosses, majority of the executives said they would opt for an early exist as today there are immense opportunities available


June 28, 2008

Learning Culture

Organizations today foster a learning culture to achieve the highest business value. But do we really understand what culture is, and what exactly a learning culture is. How does one know if your company has such a culture? And perhaps most importantly, how can you create one?

Learning Organizations are those which provide learning and training resulting in good performances by its employees. The learning programs made use of, by the organizations, help develop a competitive advantage.

In order to create a true learning culture, learning organizations must give equal focus to learning that helps the company grow, adapt to change, cultivate employee talent, innovate and develop strong customer relationships.

The learning solutions adopted by organizations take many forms. Some programs used are leadership development programs, end-to-end sales training programs, as well as corporate-wide quality and process-improvement programs.

These solutions are mostly integrated with career development models and performance management in order to succeed. These programs take years to build and mature, demanding long-term investments. These initiatives usually have long term results and intangible benefits, such as employee satisfaction and engagement, innovation and customer loyalty.

The hallmark of any learning culture is an equal focus on both performance- and talent-driven learning. Learning cultures recognize the need for performance support and improvement, but also embrace individual and organizational learning as a component of business strategy.

In reality, a learning culture is built through a rejuvenation of business processes which are driven by the top management all the way down to the grassroots of the organization.

June 15, 2008

Cultural Fit

Most HR professionals today recognize the importance of Cultural Fit. What is Cultural Fit? It becomes useful to first explore the broader concept of fit and the reasons why culture fit is particularly important.

Fit is typically defined in two ways:

• Job fit

• Organization fit.

Job fit refers to the degree to which the candidate’s skills and experience are
relevant to the job and the degree to which the candidate finds the role’s activities and responsibilities satisfying.

Organizational fit refers to the candidate’s compatibility with the organization’s values and mode of operation.

While organization fit covers a range of organizational attributes the most common and frequently cited element centers on the congruence between individual and organizational values. This is referred to as culture fit.

Research over the years has shown that individuals selected on the basis of culture fit will contribute faster, perform better and stay longer. In today’s business scenario knowledge, intellectual capital, individual and organizational qualities represent the competitive value proposition for most companies.

Culture fit cannot be developed in any individual. Provided someone fits into the organization, and demonstrates the ability to grow and develop, their knowledge and skills will change and grow over time. Values and motivations on the other hand are almost impossible to change.

Though most of the HR Managers understand the significance of Culture Fit, but the tight labor market often leads them to make decisions quickly and choose individuals who may not be right. Internally, they cite time pressures; lack of available tools, skills and resources as the reasons for not assessing cultural fit.

Assessing cultural fit is not as difficult as many would think. It requires establishing strong processes and tools that are understood and effectively practiced by all managers.

The first step is to secure the Top Management buying. This starts with demonstrating a sound return on investment.

The next step is to put in place sound and efficient processes that support the assessment of culture fit. This is where the HR function plays a critical role.

Finally, the individual’s rankings are compared with the organization profiles to identify areas of alignment and potential mismatch. This information is often carried forward to first or second interviews.

Recruiting for cultural fit is very important. Organizational culture today is being threatened by hiring processes. What is encouraging though is the recognition that the issue of culture fit is an important one. The HR function needs to take a strategic stance on the same.

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