'Build employee culture to boost performance'
Today, the role of HR has been radically redefined and more emphasis
has been placed on effectively managing every aspect of the employee
life-cycle, from talent acquisition, and performance measurement to
employee compensation, Chairman, HR Cornucopia, Dinesh Weerakkody told
the technical sessions of Annual Conference of the Chartered Institute
of Marketing at the Waters Edge recently.
"This amazing shift in HR starts at the most fundamental level:
helping to raise the bar on individual performance, for employees to
realise their full potential and finally for the company as a whole," he
He said that strategic HR is ensuring that companies aren't leaving
huge amounts of money on the table in the form of missed profits due to
unrealised performance and productivity.
The first step, he said in unlocking a company's true potential is
ensuring that employees understand how their specific job and role
contributes to achieving the company's business objectives.
Without a consistent process of setting goals for each employee that
fits directly to your company's objectives, they may be spending too
much time on the wrong activities.
Weerakkody said, "Even though Lankan women now are better educated
than ever before and are stepping into high profile roles, female
participation in the labour market today is only 38% while male labour
participation rate is around 85%".
Women in top management, he said are only 5%, that is despite 66% of
the degree holders being women and they are ready to take on senior
roles. However, he pointed that introducing legislation may not be the
best way to increase the number of women in leadership roles.
Because it may not be fair for men to have men pay for social justice
by promoting a disproportionate number of women and also to women to
take jobs where they may not be the most qualified and where gender
gives then an advantage.
Instead, what we need is to make sure that the talent pipeline is
filled with competent women. This increases the pool of women and
ultimately will increase the number of women being qualified for key
This may take some time, but it will ensure a firm deploys the entire
work force productively and inclusively. As a country, Weerakkody said
that Sri Lanka would need to have a labour regulatory framework that
provides for flexible work arrangements that suits the needs of the
world of work today.
Weerakkody, a former Chairman of the Commercial Bank and the
Employees' Trust Fund Board said, "The amendments to our legislation
that restrict women doing night work have to be changed to facilitate
the breakdown of the 'traditional' office, with 'normal' office hours
and people will develop 'portfolio careers' or have multiple consulting
engagements at a time."
He said that increasingly in every market and country we will see
people delaying retirement and staying longer in the workforce and
multiple generations will, therefore, be forced to work together.