Eleven billion reasons to be business focused

first_img Comments are closed. Previous Article Next Article Paul Robertson’s letters (5 August) questioning the “reliability ofdoctor diagnosis on fitness to work” provoked much response from readers.Can we trust the word of a doctor? Is it so easy for patients to mislead adoctor? Do our employees ‘bunk off’ with the added support of a doctor’scertificate? And to make things worse, according to numerous press reports,record temperatures across the UK last month brought a huge rise in ‘sicky’dial-a-days for sunbathers. With this growing trend and scale, why do so many believe that not enough isbeing done to minimise absenteeism. I believe there are three inhibitors: – The Fear Factor (a stick with no carrot) Do we truly understand our duty of care as an employer in terms of theimpact of the Disability Discrimination Act, health and safety at work andenvironmental legislation? Do we truly know when we can terminate an employmentcontract following sickness related incidents? And if that’s not enough toscare you, there’s plenty of other legislation and reports, such as the onefrom the TUC which points out that workers exposed to stress for half theirworking lives are 25 per cent more likely to die from a heart attack. – Management How many line managers are adequately briefed to be able to tackle analleged offender? How many managers rely on HR to tackle this welfare type rolewhen fears of personal litigation hang over their heads? – Human Resources At a basic level, HR needs to provide sufficient management information onattendance, sick records, trend analysis and benchmarks. This requires commonprocesses, organisation and technology readily accessible by line managers. Ata business partner level, HR has to coach and equip managers with the necessaryskills to address this people issue and measure company performance in thiscritical area of attendance management. And let’s not forget the cause ofabsenteeism rather than just the effect itself. So is there a carrot? It’s not surprising there is a reluctance to tacklethis sensitive problem head on with such a stick to beat management back. Andyet there is a huge carrot for those who can get to grips with the growingtrend that the average UK worker has 7 days sick leave per year. A recentsurvey estimated that absence from work costs British organisations £11bn everyyear, or 9 per cent of annual salary costs. With an £11bn prize at stake, this is a classic example where HR could trulyact as the business partner that it aspires to be. It is a great opportunity toadd significant, and measurable value to an organisation’s bottom line. If it needs help, HR could always outsource the basics, freeing it up tofocus on this strategic issue. By Alan Bailey Eleven billion reasons to be business focusedOn 9 Sep 2003 in Personnel Today Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more

The Old Ball Game

first_imgJust for Kicks: Huarache-clad Tarahumara combine soccer and running in a 50-mile ball-kicking race. Photo: Tania MaldonadoIt was the second-most amazing athletic performance I had ever witnessed. And though I was in Mexico’s Copper Canyons with the Tarahumara, it had nothing to do with barefoot running.I was waiting for Arnulfo—yes, that Arnulfo, the huarache-clad Tarahumara runner featured in the bestselling book Born to Run. The most successful Tarahumara athlete of all time lived in a one-room, mud-brick adobe hut, where he and five others shared a single bed and open-fire stove. In the ox-plowed fields outside his hut, stubbles of corn stalks clattered in the dry wind. A wiry goat bleated.Arnulfo was hauling water from a nearly dry spring two miles down the canyon. While awaiting his return, I wandered over to my friend Rod, who was hunkered in the soft shade of an old-growth pine forest. Rod picked up a pine cone and threw it at me. I grabbed a rotted, knotted pine branch and swatted at it.“This is how baseball must have started,” Rod said. We felt primeval in the ancient forest, swinging our club and shattering pine cones. But really we were two pasty-white gringos with video cameras, hoping to document the last vestiges of Tarahumara traditions before they were destroyed by drug trafficking, clear-cutting, mining, and the worst drought in Mexico’s recorded history.A Tarahumara woman watched us quietly from the edge of the forest. Her scarlet blouse and sapphire skirt flapped in the canyon breeze. Her night-black hair was pinned back by a hand-carved wooden barrette. She tried not to make eye contact. It was taboo for Tarahumara women to speak or even look at a chobochi (their word for all non-Tarahumara people).Rod drew a five-sided plate in the dry earth with the broken end of the pine branch. Instead of pine cones, I grabbed an old, dog-chewed tennis ball from my backpack. Rod swung too hard and fouled off several pitches. He blamed it on the bat. One foul ball landed near the Tarahumara woman. She pretended not to notice.“Do you want to play?” I asked her in broken Spanish. She sat stoic and motionless, eyes forward, hands folded in her lap. But her eyes betrayed her. She sneaked sideways glances at the gringos swatting at a ball with a pine stick.“Come on, take a few cuts,” Rod said.Finally, she stood and walked over to the home plate we had drawn in the dirt. Her name was Josefa, and she had never swung a bat. She held it with one hand, low and parallel to the ground. I tossed an underhand pitch as gently as I could. She clobbered it over the trees with a vicious one-handed swipe. Rod’s jaw dropped to the pine-needled floor of the forest.I threw the next pitch overhand, and again she crushed it over the trees. I peppered her with fastballs, curveballs, spitballs. She hit every one.“She’s a friggin’ slugger,” Rod said.Josefa tried not to smile.Finally Arnulfo returned with water, and we were on our way to an athletic feat even more astounding than Josefa’s home run derby. Arnulfo and 50 other Tarahumara runners were competing the next day in a rarajipari, a centuries-old ball-kicking race. It was a hybrid of running and soccer: two teams each kicked a wooden ball for dozens of miles along steep canyon paths. If the ball went off trail, runners used sticks to dig the ball out of thorn bushes and rocky gulches. As always, the Tarahumara wore their traditional handmade huaraches, which consisted of worn tire tread strapped to their feet with goat leather.Arnulfo carves a wood ball from a sacred tree. Photo: Tania MaldonadoBefore the race, I watched the teams carve wooden balls out of a sacred ash tree. I figured the ball-kicking would be easy, like dribbling a soccer ball. Not quite. After a few kicks, I hobbled off with a bruised foot, splintered toenail, and a bloody, swollen toe.“That ain’t no soccer ball,” I mumbled to Rod. “That’s solid wood.”The next day, I ran alongside Arnulfo’s team in the rarajipari. An hour before the race, Arnulfo handed me a traditional Tarahumara blouse and a loincloth, both of which were made for a five-foot Tarahumara runner, not a six-foot American. I felt obligated to wear traditional Tarahumara huaraches as well. My feet screamed with each step. The crowds laughed at the costumed gringo limping farther behind.Even though I never once kicked the ball, I could barely keep up. The Tarahumara ran faster kicking a hard wooden ball over rocky singletrack than I could run flat-out. They flung the wooden ball thirty yards ahead with spot-on accuracy, like a golfer dropping a tee shot next to the hole, then chased it down and slung it again.As the fifty-mile race wore on, teammates held torches to light the trail. Tarahumara onlookers wagered with piles of clothes and crafts. They cast spells on the opposing team using rattles and drums.At dusk, when Arnulfo’s team kicked their ball across the finish line first, I trailed several meters behind, feet blistered, eyes wet. Never before had I witnessed such endurance. It was true: the Tarahumara really were the toughest people on the planet. No one else could endure 50 rugged miles at breakneck speed kicking a wooden ball while nearly barefoot. Put Meb or Geb—or Pele or Rinaldo—in a pair of huaraches, and they would get dusted by the Tarahumara.They weren’t born with callused feet and gritty resolve. The Tarahumara earned their toughness every day of their hardscrabble lives. There was nothing genetic about it.There was nothing romantic about it, either. They may be the world’s toughest runners (and most promising baseball prospects), but they feel pain just as much as we do. They still wince when they stub their toes. They hurt with hunger pangs when their crops fail and their corn cribs are empty.Millions of Americans are now wearing minimalist running shoes, and that’s probably a good thing. We chabochi don’t need as much cushioning—in our shoes or in our lives. But it will take more than changing our footwear to tap the Tarahumara’s toughness. Their endurance goes far beyond running. They are as deep as their ancestral canyons, pure as the water that carved them. And as vulnerable.last_img read more

Firefighters Ball raises over 65000

first_imgWinn added that the atmosphere was extra special this year, especially since the firefighters began their charitable society in 2016 to help residents with travel medical expenses. He added that the vast majority of the money raised will be staying in the local area. FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — The 10th Annual Fort St. John Firefighters Charity Ball brought in an estimated $65,000 after expenses on Saturday night.Firefighters Charitable Society President Adam Winn said that though the final exact tally isn’t in yet, but that at least $65,000 was raised for two causes at the event, after the ball grossed around $111,000. Winn said that the ball was raising money for the local firefighters charity that supports Fort St. John residents cover travel expenses for medical treatment outside the Peace Region. The ball also raised money for the Firefighters Burn Fund.Winn said that the he was stunned at the amount of money the sold-out event raised, especially considering that the local economy has not quite recovered to levels seen five years ago. For the tenth anniversary celebrations, Winn said that firefighters aimed to make the event more lively than in years past, with live music from CC Brooks and the Roadside Distraction and the Montney Coulees making live music a debut at the ball.last_img read more

FSJ city council approves grant to Peace Country River Rats

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – Fort St. John city council has approved a grant to the Peace Country River Rats to help host the 2019 World Jet Boat Race Championships.Peace Country River Rats had requested that the city funds the race with a $2,500 grant.Council has passed a motion to fund the full amount requested by the group. This funding will help alleviate the cost associated with the hosting of the race.The 2019 World Jet Boat Race will be coming to the Peace on July 10 to 21, 2019.last_img

India and France hold biggest naval exercises

first_imgOn Board French Aircraft: With the aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle at the centre, France and India on Friday stepped up their biggest naval exercises as the Indian Ocean’s strategic shipping lanes draw ever more envious eyes.Without naming the Asian giant, India and France worry about China’s growing economic clout and its territorial claims that have caused tensions in the South China Sea. “We think we can bring more stability to a region that is strategic, that has huge stakes, notably for international trade,” said Rear Admiral Olivier Lebas, who commands the French fleet that includes its only aircraft carrier. Also Read – 2019 most peaceful festive season for J&K: Jitendra SinghThe vast majority of trade between Asia and Europe and the Middle East — particularly oil — is carried across the ocean, while internet-communications cables straddle the seabed that is rich with its own oil and gas fields. The 42,000 tonne Charles de Gaulle is one of 12 warships and submarines — six from each country — taking part in the 17th annual exercises off the coast of the Indian resort state of Goa. French authorities say they are the biggest ever since the exercises started in 2001. And the presence of the aircraft carrier, which has just undergone an 18-month refit, is no accident. Also Read – Personal life needs to be respected: Cong on reports of Rahul’s visit abroadRow after row of Rafale fighter jets were launched to deafening roars off the carrier’s 261 metre (860 feet) runway. India’s traditional dominance in the Indian Ocean faces a growing Chinese shadow with the deployment of warships and submarines along shipping lanes and the construction of a giant network of commercial infrastructure through its Belt and Road initiative, which India strongly opposes. “China is not an aggressive country” in the Indian Ocean, said Rear Admiral Didier Maleterre, the head of French maritime forces in the region. “What you see in the sea around China, the reclamation of land on islands in the Spratleys or Paracels, you do not see that in the Indian Ocean,” he said. The top officer said President Xi Xinping’s building of new Silk Road trade routes, which includes the Indian Ocean, “is a strategy being put in place that is mainly economic, with perhaps a dual purpose.” Malterre did not specify what other purpose, but added that there are “scenarios” in the next 10 to 15 years, “certainly not as big as in the sea off China, but that clearly could lead to tensions.” France annoyed China last month by sending a warship into the Taiwan Straits. The ship was intercepted by the Chinese navy and Beijing made an official protest, while France insisted it was exercising “freedom of navigation”. French diplomats insist there is no link between that incident and the Indian Ocean exercises. The links between India and France “are certainly not a partnership aimed against any country in the region or any power in the world,” said Alexandre Ziegler, French ambassador to India. The Charles de Gaulle is being used again as a projection of French power however. In March, it took part in international operations in the Mediterranean against the Islamic State group. From these exercises, the carrier is to go on to Singapore.last_img read more

Economist Piketty to study Kerala model of growth

first_imgThiruvananthapuram: Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Monday said a nodal officer would be appointed to help eminent economist Thomas Piketty to study the state’s model of growth. Vijayan said this after returning from a tour to Europe, where he had a detailed discussion with Piketty. “On my visit to the Paris School of Economics, I had a discussion with Piketty and he mentioned a detailed study of India’s economic situation was not possible as the government was unwilling to share the country’s economic data,” said the Chief Minister. According to Vijayan, Piketty was keen to study the Kerala model of growth if the government shared the state’s economic data. “Since he said that, we have decided to appoint a nodal officer for it,” said Vijayan. “The French economist also expressed wish to visit Kerala and interact with economists and universities here. We have extended an invite to him,” Vijayan said.last_img read more

Bye week an unwelcome break for Buckeyes

Sophomore H-back Dontre Wilson (2) carries the ball as senior wide receiver Devin Smith (9) and sophomore running back Ezekiel Elliott (15) block during a game against Maryland on Oct. 4 at Byrd Stadium in College Park, Md. OSU won, 52-24.Credit: Mark Batke / Photo editorFollowing back-to-back weeks in which the Ohio State football team amassed 710 and 533 yards on offense, respectively, it might face its biggest challenge yet — another bye week.Just as it seemed the Buckeyes were starting to gain momentum both offensively and defensively, they will now face their second bye week in a month.Coach Urban Meyer said during Tuesday’s Big Ten teleconference that the bye week comes at an unfortunate time for the Buckeyes.“I wish we were still playing,” Meyer said. “This is one of those weeks that there’s some momentum, guys are feeling good, so I need to keep that momentum, keep getting better, and get out of this week healthy.”Meyer added that he is treating this bye week slightly different than he normally would, taking practice one day at a time.“I just did a very unique thing. I just did today’s practice and I am going to wait until tomorrow to do tomorrow’s,” Meyer said. “I am going to see how we go today. We do have a little more dings — not injuries but just guys are beat up a little bit.”The bye week comes after sophomore running back Ezekiel Elliott posted his best two games of the season — and of his career — as he rushed for back-to-back 100-plus-yard games for the first time since he arrived at OSU.Elliott said he agreed with Meyer about the off week.“I do wish we were playing this week,” Elliott said following the 52-24 win over Maryland on Saturday. “But we will take another week to get it all together, keep it rolling and get better.”Not only was Elliott starting to hit his stride, but redshirt-freshman quarterback J.T. Barrett was beginning to impress as he totaled eight touchdown passes compared to zero interceptions in his last two games against Cincinnati and Maryland.Barrett said following the win against the Terrapins that he, along with the entire offense, is gaining confidence each week.“I feel like with the things that the defense present to us, we just take advantage of that. We just try to be prepared for anything and everything and so we just have to do a good job of executing,” Barrett said. “As far as myself, I’m just trying to get better during the week and not wait until gameday to just react to everything. I learn the defense on Tuesday and Wednesday so come Saturday I can have that confidence and go out and play.”Meyer said after the win against Maryland that he has been impressed with not only Barrett, but multiple players on the offensive side of the ball.“J.T. Barrett is playing very well and the big thing is we can still get better. The guys playing around him are pretty good too,” Meyer said. “There’s a lot of confidence when you start rotating six receivers in there and they are all quality guys.Meyer added that moving forward, his Buckeyes will have to keep up their intensity, especially during the bye week.“The road is just getting tougher and tougher. We are just worried about getting better this week,” he said after defeating the Terrapins. “It’s a bye week, I wish we were playing another one next week, our whole team wishes we (were) playing. I’m going to just give them as many game reps as I can to show maturity.”Following the bye week, the Buckeyes are scheduled to take on Rutgers on Oct. 18 at Ohio Stadium. Kickoff is set for 3:30 p.m. read more

Ohio State field hockey gearing up for No 9 Northwestern

OSU field hockey players gather in a huddle during a game against Iowa on Oct. 19 at Buckeye Varsity Field. OSU lost, 4-2.Credit: Ban Jackson / For The LanternThe Ohio State field hockey team is set to play its final road game of the season against a top-10 opponent.OSU (6-9, 1-5) is scheduled to travel to Evanston, Ill., on Saturday to take on No. 9 Northwestern at 1 p.m. The Wildcats are coming off a 5-2 victory against Michigan State on Sunday, which helped them regain a share of first place in the conference.Northwestern (11-5, 5-1) used its speed and set plays to take down the Spartans, connecting on two penalty corners to help put Michigan State away.The Wildcats could pose some problems for OSU in the midfield as they boast two of the top scorers in the Big Ten at that position.Sophomore midfielder Dominique Masters scored twice against the Spartans, bringing her season total to 10 goals. That mark is good enough for ninth in the conference to go along with her 26 total points.The Canterbury, U.K., native is joined in the midfield by fellow sophomore Isabel Flens.Flens is tied for second on the team in assists with eight, and is tied for seventh in the Big Ten with 28 points on the season. She hails from Hattem, Netherlands, and is one of six players from outside the United States playing for Northwestern.Regardless of international players or high-scoring attackers, both teams have their sights set on postseason play.The Buckeyes and the Wildcats are gearing up for a run in the Big Ten Tournament where the winner will receive an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.But before OSU can turn its attention fully to the tournaments, it’ll have one more game remaining on the regular season slate.The Buckeyes are scheduled to play Michigan on Nov. 2 at Buckeye Varsity Field. The game is set to begin at noon before the Big Ten Tournament kicks off on Nov. 6 in Ann Arbor, Mich. read more

John Terry has left Aston Villa with an emotional message to

first_imgAs we reported earlier that John Terry will leave Aston Villa, the England star defender has taken a bow from his claret and blue team-mates after the play-off final defeat to Fulham at Wembley.The 37-year-old flew out on his holidays having known that he would not be staying at the club but intends to seek a new challenge next year.The captain left an emotional message for his fans via birminghammail saying:“Today I part ways with Aston Villa Football Club.“I’m very proud to have had the opportunity to play and captain this great and huge club.“I have given my everything this year both on and off the pitch and I’m still hurting today that we never managed to get back to the Premier League, where this club 100% belongs.Aston Villa explains why they spent so much money on players Manuel R. Medina – September 6, 2019 According to Aston Villa’s chief executive, the team needed to spend £144.5 million on 12 players in order to stay competitive.“I would like to thank Steve Bruce who was instrumental in me joining Villa.“I have learnt so much from him as a manager this season that will stay with me forever.“Also, I’d like to thank all the staff and players and our owner Dr Tony, who it was a real pleasure and honour to work with every day“Finally, a special thank you to the Villa supporters who have supported us both home and away in their thousands, up and down the country and have been amazing to me on a personal level.“Villa will always have a place in my heart and I will look back on my time here and think about how close we were to reaching our goal.“But now going forward, I would like to wish the management, staff, players and supporters good luck for the future” he concluded.last_img read more

Kompany Our pride has been hurt

first_imgManchester City defender Vincent Kompany says the recent defeats they suffered at the hands of Crystal Palace and Leicester City have hurt their pride.Ahead of Thursday night’s potential title-deciding clash with Liverpool at the Etihad, Kompany still has hope that they can catch up with league leaders Liverpool despite trailing them by seven points.“We shouldn’t focus too much on points at the moment, we know if we can play to our potential we are a good team,” Kompany told Sky Sports.Premier LeaguePremier League Betting: Match-day 5 Stuart Heath – September 14, 2019 Going into the Premier League’s match-day five with a gap already beginning to form at the top of the league. We will take a…“Our pride has been hurt over the last few weeks but we have everything to play for and it depends on us.“It’s one of those key games you live for. Every living soul that comes into the stadium on Thursday has to be ready to fight and give it to them.“And we should be able to pull everything out of the locker for that game.”last_img read more