No Image Available

HR Zone Any Answers Digest #13 – Best and worst managers… benchmarking rewards… Data Protection… diversity


HR ZONE Any Answers Digest – Issue 13
Tuesday 6 August 2002

********** THIS WEEK’S TOPICS ***** THIS WEEK’S TOPICS **********
Leadership and diversity… Benchmarking reward packages… Data
Protection Training… Best and worst managers… Running
********** THIS WEEK’S TOPICS ***** THIS WEEK’S TOPICS **********

Motiva Corporate Development
Leadership development experts Motiva have focussed the most up-
to-date and potent performance technology into an inspirational
five day residential programme consolidated with 1-2-1 coaching
support. The course identifies crucial individual performance
areas, transforming participants’ confidence and capacity to
lead. Book your place or find out more about inspirational
leadership call Julia McCracken NOW on 01242 706742, or e-mail
mailto:[email protected].

What you asked this fortnight

New questions posted include:

– I am planning to put together an information session on
Leadership and another on Diversity. What are the main/ current
issues which face organisations and persons responsible for staff
development? asks Nicholas Powell

– Can anyone advise on a relatively quick and simple method of
how to go about benchmarking reward packages for certain jobs?
Karen Donaldson

– I am running internal briefing sessions for our staff on Data
Protection and on Work Permits. Can anyone suggest user-friendly
information sources that I can refer to when designing these
briefings? Asks Claire Lloyd

Do you have a question, a problem, or just want to compare notes?
Post your questions now, free of charge at

PeopleSoft Human Resource Management – free downloads
Human Resources departments are increasingly using technology to
help them align business aims with their local workforce
objectives. At the same time, collaborative technologies can
give employees fast access to the personalised information they
need to do their jobs. Find out how instant technological
solutions can turn your people into your competitive advantage,
and help them out too:
More documents on practical solutions can be accessed here:

Featured question: Best and worst managers

We run an exercise called ‘Best or Worst Manager’ as part of
leadership and management development programmes, particularly to
help individuals focus upon their own behaviour and leadership
style. Do you have any of your own experience (good or bad!) to
share? The most important part of the exercise (for me) is to
understand why people consider an individual to have been their
best or worst manager.
Colin Hamilton

Edited responses appear, to read responses in full, go to


The one-man band: the worst manager I’ve dealt with was a guy who
didn’t trust his people. He funnelled everything through himself,
and spent most of his time rushing around ordering paper clips
and suchlike. Needless to say, most of us left for greener

Peter Secomb


The worst manager I ever worked for set objectives that he then
changed 2 weeks later, but insisted on measuring your work
performance against the original objectives. He also set
individuals objectives that weren’t part of their areas of
responsibility – so they had no way of achieving them – his
reasoning being that manager x isn’t doing his/her job properly
so one of your targets can be to help him/her – even though you
would have no authority over manager x!

He also prided himself on his cost consciousness so when people
left (as they often did) he wouldn’t replace them so that he
could show of that he was managing his headcount! This caused
untold stress – none of which was helped by his leaving promptly
at 4:30pm everyday!

Cathy Macnamara


Well meaning incompetents are usually manageable if they at least
have the savvy to play to their peoples’ strengths (I have had
two managers that fall into this category).

The ones I have had the most difficulty with have been (two, in
the same company) the egocentrics who think they have to be nasty
to be effective managers. Strangely both went the same way.

Somewhere in the middle are those who are pathologically unable
to share the necessary information to get the job done,and whose
vision is theirs and only theirs… The best have used Ronald
Reagan’s favourite Russian proverb, ‘Trust but verify’, along
with a clear identifiable and communicated set of objectives.

Ian Gearing


I think good managers are really mentors and as a manager I was
always encouraging people to take over my shoes, so I could move
on, and also let them develop their careers and knowledge.

Pete King


The best managers are professional, knowledgeable, prepared to
listen, thoughtful, decisive, team-spirited and encouraging. The
worst are manipulative, poor listeners, paranoid and de-

Claire Lloyd

To read responses in full, go to

Any Answers Answered:
This fortnight, these new responses have been added:

Q – At present we run induction training specifically for school
leavers or non school leavers. Does anyone have any experiences
to suggest that mixing these groups during induction would add
value to their induction programme?

Vicky Mckenzie

(Shortened responses appear – see site for responses in full)

A – I find that mixing groups with varying levels of experience
adds to the learning events. Whilst not necessarily working with
school leavers, I have run induction programmes within a
franchised network, for both experienced and inexperienced
personnel. I find that the experienced people can assist by
providing their thoughts based on their experiences and the non
experienced help by providing some completely fresh, unprejudiced

Mark Brown


A – I like to mix levels/experience because induction should be
orientation around culture, values, welcoming stuff and other
generic things that all new starters need to know. More job
specific content should be handled locally. I do recommend an
experienced facilitator handles this type of Induction event,
though, because delegates from differing backgrounds,ages etc
might need skilful handling when in a single group (differing
expectations/comfort levels etc).

Rick Martin

To see all the responses to this question in full, go to:

Do you have anything to add? Or do you have a problem or a query
on any HR-related subject? Join in now, at

How to subscribe or unsubscribe to this digest

To subscribe to this newswire, e-mail
mailto:[email protected]
with the message SUBSCRIBE HRZAA in the body text.

To unsubscribe, e-mail mailto:[email protected]
with the message UNSUBSCRIBE HRZAA in the body text.

Copyright (c) 2002 Sift Group Ltd. All rights reserved.
May be reproduced in any medium for non-commercial purposes as
long as attribution is given.
HR Zone, 100 Victoria Street, Bristol BS1 6HZ
Tel:+44 (0)117 915 9600 Fax:+44 (0)117 915 9630 ISSN 1474-2225

No Image Available

Get the latest from HRZone

Subscribe to expert insights on how to create a better workplace for both your business and its people.


Thank you.

Thank you! Your subscription has been confirmed. You'll hear from us soon.