Saturday, January 12, 2019

Millennial lens: What do they expect from their employers?

Currently, we have about 2 billion millennials in the world. Engaging this cohort for businesses, societies and nations is no more a matter of choice but rather a compulsion. Companies need to rethink their strategy when it comes to hiring and engaging millennials.

The 2016 millennial survey by Deloitte presents an alarming scenario that shows majority of the millennials or Gen Y workers are likely to change their companies by 2020. The survey also points to the fact that this lack of loyalty may be a sign of poor levels of engagement of millennial workers around the world turning out to be a huge red flag for all companies.

What would a millennial look for when choosing a company to work? What are the factors that will bear more weightage than others? If companies wants to attract millennials, then they must take into consideration what they really expect from their workplace.

Dr Debashish Sengupta, Director, Alliance School of Business Alliance University, Bangalore, India in his book “The Life of Y” writes about engaging millennials at the workplace providing insights on how businesses and organizations can redesign the strategy to build attractive workplaces that appeal to these young workers.

Read the full article here.

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Wednesday, January 09, 2019

Why Learn about Ideologies?

Dr. Arvind Sivaramakrishnan, an Adjunct Professor and former visiting Professor in the Department of Humanities at the Indian Institute of Technology Madras, brings his academic and wider experience to bear on the need to learn and understand ideologies.

Very often, we hear people say things like these:

‘You’re a fascist.’
‘That’s a neoliberal economic policy.’
‘This is truly radical feminism.’
‘They’re a bunch of marxists.’
‘This is a postmodern novel.’
‘We’re facing a techno-managerialist takeover of a public institution.’

We hear, or read, or use, ideological terms such as ‘liberalism’, ‘feminism’, environmentalism’, and many others all the time. They are used as shorthand descriptions, or to help us reach conclusions about policies or events, or - sometimes entertainingly - as insults, and of course in many other contexts.

But what would people say if we asked them what exactly they meant, or in what way a policy is neoliberal, or precisely how a particular moral attitude is fundamentalist? What would we ourselves say if people asked us why we think a conservative response to, say, a national educational reform plan makes good sense and raises significant challenges to the plan?

There are at least two good reasons for learning about political ideologies. The first is that we can ask for - or insist on - and understand the explanations we are given, or we can show that the people using ideological labels do not know what those terms mean, or that they have seriously misunderstood the words they are using.

The second is that we would be much better placed to understand the wider forces that shape our lives, that is, to understand and question our elected representatives and our public-service officials much better about what they plan to do, about what they actually do, and about why they do things the way they do them. We would gain a deeper and clearer understanding of the answers they give us, or of where they are evading our questions, and of how and why policies succeed or fail. 

That is essential to our being citizens in any form of democracy, and in other systems it can be crucial to our very survival. In democracies, we can see how the state often recognises the importance of public accountability, in the form of laws which give the public rights to official information. Indeed, we could start to see how even those kinds of laws are different in different countries, and how the laws themselves express or embody different political ideologies; we would learn different ways of reading our world, of making sense of events, institutions, and political cultures.

Those are just some of the ways in which even reasonable knowledge of political ideologies - of the ideas they express of human nature, and of society and politics - helps us to understand our world better, and even to act with deeper knowledge of it. Indeed it says something about our current political condition that we so often use ideological terms freely but with almost no idea of what they mean.

We would, furthermore, make some startling discoveries For example, the neoliberal thinker Friedrich von Hayek, who argued all his life against state planning and state intervention in the economy, favoured a public welfare safety net - which, by implication, would expand as an economy expands. We might also wonder what Hayek would have said about the fact that major governments committed to neoliberalism poured something like $3 trillion into rescuing private banks whose own actions had caused the 2007-9 global financial crash. As for Karl Marx, it is not widely recognised that he hated violence and walked out of organisations which advocated violence. We would find that many extreme fundamentalist sects which loathe everything about modern society are also very skilled in using the internet, advertising and PR techniques, and high-tech weaponry to spread and enforce their messages to great, even global, effect - and that they could not do without the latest technologies. 

If you want to read a clear, direct, and accessible textbook which aims to aid the reader to identify and evaluate the assumptions underlying a wide range of public matters read the SAGE textbook Introduction to Political Ideologies by Arvind Sivaramakrishnan.

If you have any questions for the author, please write to us at

Click here for the complete list of textbooks on Political theory and thought.

This article was originally published on University Express, on December 29, 2018.

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Tuesday, January 08, 2019

Human factor from womb to tomb

If your dream job is to play a role in creating a positive workplace culture and engage in personnel development, gaining the right qualifications and professional accreditation is essential. At the heart of every successful business lies the human resources team which drives all aspects of staff management. Human Resource Management (HRM) has emerged as a potential green area attracting attention of people worldwide from all corners, including industries, education, banking, hospitals, tourism, etc. It is so because human factor is the only active factor of production while other factors of production are passive and are made active only by human factor whether visibly or invisibly. It is here that HRM comes into vogue as it takes care of human factor from womb to tomb i.e. right from procurement to retirement and even thereafter. It is therefore natural that in order to attract, maintain and retain the desired talent, every organization is keen to have the best possible human resource management.

SAGE Publishing has a fast growing list of high-quality textbooks on Human Resources written by industry and subject experts. Dr. R.C. Sharma, Founder Vice-Chancellor, Amity University Haryana (AUH), who is presently Professor Emeritus, Amity Business School introduces you to HRM and also enlightens on a relatively new, yet popular concept of Employee value proposition (EVP) through this article. It is not only the employees that gain from EVP by way of attracting and retaining the desired talent but also the prospective employees. EVP facilitates them to make a decision whether they should join an organization or not.

However, attracting and retaining the desired talent is not a simple task. It involves a lot of things but, of late, the concept of employee value proposition, (EVP) is gaining momentum. EVP is a set of associations and offerings provided by an organization in return for the skills, capabilities and experience an employee brings to the organization. EVP is, thus, the value that employees get in return for working at their organizations.

Every organization should, therefore, build unique brands of themselves in the eyes of their prospective employees to attract them. This essentially implies developing a statement of ‘why the total work experience at their organizations is superior to that at other organisations. The value proposition, therefore, should outline the unique employee policies, programmes, rewards and benefit programmes that prove an organisation’s commitment to people. It should define to a prospective employee’s ‘why should I join this organization?’ Not only this, EVP should be well communicated in all hiring efforts of the organization. As such it may be duly reflected on the company’s website, job advertisements and letters extending employment opportunities.

Building EVP

While thinking about creating an employer band, we first think about how it looks. Hence, we focus on a logo or the type of font to use as this is what our prospective employees see first. However, simply having an attractive face may not suffice. It should be lively as well as having its own personality. It is here, that EVP comes into picture because the EVP is how life can be put into your employer band. In order to develop a meaningful value proposition, the six steps to be taken involve dig, listen, analyse, decide, build and codify. EVP provides a fairly good idea about the organization concerned - its philosophy and HR policies, employer’s concern for its employees, facilities available for personal growth, benefits, both financial and non-financial, available to the employees, and finally the future of the employees at the organization.

To know more about the aforesaid six steps, read Human Resource Management: Theory and Practice by R.C. Sharma and Nipun Sharma published by SAGE India.
If you have any questions for the author, please write to us at

Click here for the complete list of textbooks on Human Resource Management.

* Author Credits:  R C Sharma
This article was originally published on University Express, on December 27, 2018.

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