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Cath Everett

Sift Media

Freelance journalist and former editor of HRZone

Read more about Cath Everett

Dealing with an Olympian event


 Love them or loathe them, the Olympic and Paralympic Games are now mere months away.

But worryingly, according to research by Olympic sponsor, BT, almost a third of organisations across the country have simply not made adequate enough preparations to cope, even though a huge 93% expect to be affected in some way – not least by staff taking time off to watch the Games as they unfold.
But employers located in areas where the events are taking place are not only likely to be swamped with a possible mountain of holiday requests – or disciplinary procedures if there end up being too many unauthorised absences.
They will also have to cope with up to six weeks of travel disruption and so need to think about ways of helping staff to either work more flexible hours or from home.
So to help you with your own planning processes, we speak to two organisations, IT network provider Cisco, and printer systems and services provider, Ricoh, about what they have been doing to ensure that the Games work for them in terms of positive staff relations rather than against them in terms of business chaos. I think you’ll find some of their insights and initiatives useful in terms of possible applications for your own business.
But we’re not just looking at the potential impact of the Olympics in terms of workforce planning and rejigging policies and procedures to ensure that they’re fit-for-purpose.
Possible legacies
We’re also exploring what possible legacies the Games might leave the country, its business community and its workforce. London won the bid to host the event at least partially on its regeneration promises and so we look at what we can expect to remain in place once the party’s over.
We also evaluate progress so far in terms of such important matters as new skills provision and job creation in traditionally deprived areas of the capital.
As a final treat though, HRzone has been speaking to a number of ex-Olympians on the trendy cross-over area between sport and business – an area that former gold medal winning swimmer, Adrian Moorhouse believes enjoys an overlap of around 60%.
But other well-known sports people such as former world record javelin thrower, Steve Backley, and double Olympic gold sailing champion, Sarah Ayton, who have likewise set up their own executive development consultancies, also share their insights.
They talk to us on a host of topics ranging from how to boost staff motivation to ensuring that employee performance remains consistently high.
So with that in mind, all that remains to say is ‘Let the Games commence’. And enjoy.
Author Profile Picture
Cath Everett

Freelance journalist and former editor of HRZone

Read more from Cath Everett

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