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Your Cold Office Will Destroy Your Team

Your Cold Office Will Destroy Your TeamOffices in all climates have had the debate among co-workers at some point — the office is too cold… or too hot! For some, it’s because the building manager is too cheap to spend money on heating or air conditioning. In other cases, the manager is too generous and shows it by blasting the furnace or cool air.

As a leader responsible for a bottom line, happy team, and a positive culture, the debate of temperature should be a concern.  Failing to take it seriously can completely break up your team and cause serious issues. In the end, you will lose your job, all because you failed to care about the climate inside the office.

Don’t believe us? Just check out some of the nasty effects cold temperatures in an office can have:

  • Lower productivity. As reported in this article from the Association for Psychological Science, it’s been proven in various studies that when an office is too cold, productivity drops. The article suggests that 25C is the ideal temperature, but other sources will tell you that it should stay at 21-23. Regardless, one thing is true: frozen people do no work, and shivering people can’t produce much quality either. You may find them increasingly getting up from their desk every 5 minutes for a hot beverage (or to thaw out the one they didn’t get to finish).
  • Negative atmosphere. Additional studies have shown that when people are uncomfortable due to temperature, they become more negative. At that point, it’s just a matter of time before relationships and teams are hurt due to negative communication and hurtful comments.
  • Now that your freezing cold office has destroyed your culture and has torn everyone apart, it’s a matter of time before they realize they’re dissatisfied with their job and up and leave, for better work and warmer conditions.
  • You can salvage some cold employees by giving them a raise, or maybe they’re too untalented to find another job, but now they’re going to get sick. This article backs up the fact that cold offices can also impact your employees’ health. And before you go turning up the heat too much, there’s also such a thing as heat stress.
  • Won’t somebody think of the money?? Perhaps your office is perfectly fine in the winter, and the freezing cold temperatures appear in the summer, when it’s hot and people want air conditioning. Sure, you’re making the office more “comfortable” by blasting the AC, but do you know how much you’re spending? (not to mention the environmental implications).

Perhaps these explanations are excessive and over dramatic, but keeping an office too cold will, to some degree, lower productivity, create a negative atmosphere, cause dissatisfaction, lead to illness, and cost money. Your challenge is that everybody in your office has a different view of “too cold”. It could be based off a number of factors and backgrounds, and typically variables like age, weight and gender do make a difference.

You may not always have control over your building’s temperature, but be sure to talk to your staff and ensure their comfort while they work. For example, provide individuals with blankets, sweaters or space heaters.

Does your office have battles over temperature? How do you deal with it?

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How to Attract Top Tech Talent (Infographic)

Finding IT professionals who meet the minimum requirements to fit your team and technology projects is challenging enough. Being able to attract the best talent so they want to work at your company is a complete other level. Sure, there are the standard perks that make anybody want to work at your company, but techies are different. The best ones are in high demand and you’re competing against organizations who are willing to pay big bucks for that talent.

We shared a post this past summer that provided tips for recruiting IT professionals and it received great feedback. So, when we came across this infographic from TalentPuzzle, even though it’s a few years old, we had to share it with our readers. Enjoy!

How to Attract Top Tech Talent (Infographic)


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How to Attract and Retain the Best People (Video)

Everyone knows the importance of branding to market your company to consumers, but what about the branding directed towards employees or potential employees? In order to recruit the best employees, you need to market to them. If you want to hire the best people, motivate and engage them you need to optimize your employer brand. This quick video by The Strategist Group digs in a little deeper to explain employer branding and how it’s created and applied.

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What Your Small Company Can Offer Employees That a Large Organization Can’t

What Your Small Company Can Offer Employees That a Large Organization Can'tIf you’re a manager at a start-up or small company, then you’ve felt the frustration of competing for talent against the larger firms. You don’t have a human resources department to run your recruiting process, nor the resources to promote your job as well as your bigger counterparts. Even though there are some strategies small business can use to advertise jobs, you’re still fighting the fact that many job seekers would prefer to work for a large corporation.

For many job applicants, there’s a pre-conceived notion that working for the biggest companies should take priority or is the only way to go.  Perhaps this was brainwashed into them at school or it could be due to an ego that wants to be “#1”. Most people with this belief, though, are looking at the facts: large corporations are in a superior position to pay more, train better, provide growth, offer job security, and (for the lazy) give a crowd to hide in.

Unfortunately for these job seekers, they’re neglecting some additional facts, such as the benefits that only a small company can offer, and their dream corporation would struggle to provide. It’s your job, as the hiring manager or the person writing the job description, to highlight these perks and stand out.

Here are just some benefits of working at a smaller company versus a giant corporation or government body:

  • Faster Decisions. Small companies have less bureaucracy with small channels, meaning decisions are made faster. Without as much red tape, employees enjoy projects that move along faster. They’ll recognize this from the get-go when the hiring decision is made quickly.
  • Access to Senior Management. When an entire team is in one or a few offices, they are going to have a chance to meet everybody, including the Executive Team. In giant companies, these figureheads are nothing more than a highly spoken-of legend.
  • Tight-Knit Culture. As noted, small business teams get to meet everybody. They’re more likely to have a closer culture that forms organically, plus better relationships. Nobody is just a “number on the payroll.”
  • Recognition. In the same way lazy people can hide within giant companies, top performers are more easily recognized in the smaller-sized ones.
  • Innovation. Except for some Silicon Valley tech companies who emphasize risk and innovation, most large companies have specific laid out processes and guidelines for everything. It’s those who work in smaller organizations who benefit from thinking outside of the box and trying out new ideas.
  • Variety. Everybody plays a specific role in projects at a large organization, and they rarely stray from that position. Businesses with fewer people lack the benefit of having an expert for every task, meaning employees get to learn and work on more pieces of a project.
  • Entrepreneurship. More variety, innovation and access to senior management is naturally going to form an employee into an well rounded business person and entrepreneur. They get to see all aspects of how a business is run, which contributes immensely to a resume or any other future endeavors.

How have you differentiated yourself from your giant competitors in the job market? Do you offer any other perks to employees that they can’t? We’d love to hear them. Please share it all below!

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3 Creative Ways New Employees Can Learn the Real Facts about Their Office

3 Creative Ways New Employees Can Learn the Real Facts about Their OfficeEvery great office has onboarding. Usually a long, drawn-out system of training modules where a new hire goes through the standard health & safety spiel, learns your company’s policies, and gets accustomed to the systems and processes of their role. Important? Yes. Exciting? Maybe. Social? Not at all.

Very often, new employees will go through an onboarding process and understand everything about how to do their job, but know very little about how to fit in with the culture and get along in the office. Given how so many people use their happiness in the office as a deciding factor for staying at a job, these points should not be neglected. What about the simple quirks of the office, like whose desk often has Timbits, which elevator is the slowest, or what restaurant makes the meanest burger? Assuming insights like these are not covered in your training deck, here are some creative ways you can help new employees learn the real facts about their office.

Spice Up the Tour

When an employee comes into the office for the first time, somebody in Human Resources, or maybe their manager, gives them a quick tour. They learn key locations of the bathrooms, copiers, maybe the breakroom, and any important desks they may need to visit. The tour tends to stop there. Instead, ask a teammate (or a few teammates) to give the tour. They will cover the bases, but also go onto provide extra tips such as what not to touch in the fridge, who’s desk to avoid first thing in the morning, and where it’s safest to make a private phone call. If new hires and tours are frequent, consider a fun, graphical map that outlines the office and some fun points (ex. This window will give you the best view of the city).

Help Them Meet AND Remember People

Remembering names and faces is challenging for many people on a good day. That adds more pressure on the first day (or week) in a new office. Unless your new employee has an amazing photographic memory, the odds of them remembering everybody’s name, face and role are slim to none. They have enough to learn, so why not help them out? For example, split up the roles in their onboarding.  Ask different people to perform specific training, another to give the tour, another to be a mentor, and somebody else can take them for lunch. Meeting people throughout the day rather than all at once, first thing in the morning, makes it much easier to remember them. Finally, consider a fun alternative. This article from FastCompany suggests giving them a personal collage of immediate staff, including photos and information about them such as hobbies and favourite sayings.

Implement New Hire Team Building Traditions

Culture is an extremely important element to the office. No matter how many slides you use to try to explain it, a new hire will never truly understand it until they’re immersed in it by getting to know the team. Get the newest team member involved in the culture as quickly as possible. This could be anything from a team lunch to team building sessions to go-kart races — as long as it fits with your culture. Understandably, you can’t stop everything as soon as somebody new comes into the office, but you can set yourself standards such as “The Friday after a new person comes in we will do this…” or “Every two weeks, this simple 5-minute team building activity happens.”

It’s every manager’s dream to have all of their new hires fit into the team as quickly as possible, so the team can perform to its maximum potential. To achieve this, we need to realize that basic training is not going to suffice. Do you have any creative ways you immerse new hires into your culture?

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Recruit More Employees with This Unique Perk

Work/life balance is not a new term for hiring managers and a major consideration for almost every job seeker. For parents, it’s often the ease of maintaining a successful career while taking care of their family that makes an employer attractive. As such, companies use a number of perks and programs to promote this benefit, from flexible hours to work-from-home opportunities to daycare assistance.

As you try to think of unique perks to attract the best talent, don’t rule out the importance of “fur babies” to many of the people submitting job applications to your company. Specifically, consider a “Pet-Friendly Workplace” that allows employees to bring their animals along for the day. The benefits of such an idea extend beyond a perk that attracts more candidates, as can be seen in this infrographic from Petco.

Click to Enlarge Image

Benefits of a pet-friendly workplace Infographic

Benefits of a pet-friendly workplace Infographic by Petco

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Hiring Freelancers vs. Full Time Employees (Video)

A common question business owners, human resources, and hiring managers often ask themselves when building their team is whether they need to hire a full-time employee or an independent contractor would be the right fit for the position. Eagle has worked closely with hundreds of companies across Canada who work with contractors and permanent employees, and as such, we’ve spent a lot of time educating on the differences between the two types of personnel. Most recently on this blog, we debunked 3 myths about independent contractors and explained how job postings for contractors and employees should differ.

There is no right or wrong answer to the question about who you should hire, but it is a strategic question you should ask yourself as the right decision could lead to more success. If you’d like some more information on the topic, have a look at this video from FitSmallBusiness.

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How to Hire a Good, Humane Computer Programmer (Video)

Is your organization looking to hire a computer programmer but you’re unsure where to start? Finding the right person can be tricky, especially if you want them to properly fit into your corporate culture.

Because every culture is different, everybody’s criteria will differ as well. For some extra tips and advice, though, have a look at this interview from Jason Fried, co-founder of 37 Signals (now Basecamp), posted by Big Think. He provides some unique advice for recruiting and retaining not just IT talent, but all talent.

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How Small Companies Can Compete for Talent Against Big Brands

Being a small company often means you have to compete with the larger players in your industry for everything, including top talent.  That can be intimidating and quite challenging, especially since you only have a fraction of their budget.  The good news is, you can use size to your advantage in getting the best professionals onto your team.  Here are a three simple tips:

Promote the benefits in your job postings

There are so many benefits to working in a small company that we don’t talk about enough, so start highlighting them more.  Your company actually has more of a lot of intangible assets that big brands can’t offer — more variety, more responsibility, more access to senior-level management, and more team collaboration. How many of your job postings are showing that?

Get your jobs out there

You may never be able to afford giant billboards or be a presenting sponsor Recruiter announcing a jobto a conference, but there plenty of low-cost and free ways you can promote yourself and still break through the clutter.

  • Go beyond your job board. If you’re a small business, few people are seeking out your careers page and, unless you’ve invested a lot into SEO, you probably aren’t showing up in Google.  If you’re only posting to your website, you might as well not post at all. Get your name onto the aggregators like Indeed, Simply Hired and Eluta. For the important roles, invest in advertising on major job boards. Don’t forget to have the best job posting possible.
  • Don’t be sketchy. Yes, you need to post your job in more places, but not the smaller places. When you post your job in the same place people are selling used cars, you lose credibility.
  • Increase your social media presence. If you only post jobs to social media, they won’t reach anybody. You first need to build a following.  Do that with engaging posts, competitions to get more followers, and creating content that people will want to share with others.
  • Leverage your team. We mentioned the fact that small companies have more to offer. Use your team to promote that.  Encourage them to network in the industry and keep them happy.  The more you keep your top talent and have them promoting your company, the easier it will be for people to come knocking at your door.

Act big in a little way

When candidates come for interviews and go through the hiring process, let them know that you’re still as serious and successful as any of the other big players. Keep a big company feeling with formal interviews in a nice office, but also give them benefits that large organizations can’t offer because of their extensive processes.  You likely don’t need the long, exhausting procedure that consists of eight levels of interviews.  You can also be flexible in your scheduling, as well as flexible with the job description to include some extra responsibilities that would motivate the individual.

Don’t let being a small company keep you from attracting the best talent possible.  Many applicants will think they want to work for a large organization, thinking “bigger is better”, and not realizing what they can get with a smaller team. If you can demonstrate the benefits, you’re sure to win over some outstanding performers.

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What People Really Want from Onboarding

A great onboarding process can be the key to keeping top talent and molding new employees into long-term veterans of your company.  Have you put much thought into really understanding what new hires want from their onboarding and how you can make it a better experience? This infographic from BambooHR runs through the dos and don’ts of an fantastic onboarding experience.

Infographic: What people really want from onboarding.