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Practices The Kaizen approach to personal development is used to make real and sustainable improvements. Kaizen brings together the key people to find ways to make things better with the full support of management. The team meets for a five-day Kaizen blitz to find a new way forward.
The council has also set up a training course that is open to all staff to develop teamwork and communication skills.
The chief executive, directors and other senior managers recently held a series of open forums with council employees from across the organisation. Staff were encouraged to attend and put questions to the chief executive. The questions and answers were then made available on the council’s intranet for employees who could not attend.
Given the size of the geographical area that the council covers it is not always possible for directors of services to visit employees at their workplace as often as they would like. To overcome this the council has produced several DVDs and media clips with messages from directors to employees. These are distributed to the staff or published on the intranet.
The council has set up a leadership development programme, called Chrysalis, for women. It includes leadership appraisal and one-to-one development feedback, action learning sets on live organisational issues, sessions on presentation and personal confidence and creative problem solving.
A management development programme has also been introduced to enhance the skills and knowledge of managers at all levels of the council. The scheme aims to promote an integrated approach to the delivery of council services.
The employee health programme was established to raise awareness of the benefits of a healthy lifestyle and to use the workplace to promote good health. Topics covered include health issues for women, healthy eating, men’s health, smoking and stress, physical activity and alcohol and drugs. The message is spread through healthy-living days, health assessments, quarterly health topics with leaflets and posters, wage-slip reminders and team briefings.
Pay and benefits All flexible working options are available to most employees. Benefits include subsi- dised sports facilities, healthcare plans and an employee assistance programme, all offered as part of a flexible benefits programme.
Learn more about the 8 factors of workplace engagement here
10% of staff undertake charitable activities during business hours
40% of employees with more than 5 years' service
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