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Companies Need to Adapt to Their Employees’ Needs Cindy Rodahl has identified several key areas where companies need to evolve in order to effectively engage an increasingly more diverse workforce. Topping the list is communication. “We have employees spanning several generations, so we need to figure out the most effective way to communicate with them via their preferred vehicle—written, video, text, or instant messaging,” she says. “Companies are thinking differently about their employee communication strategy. Not only about creating new tools and learning how to manage these new tools, but also about ‘decluttering’ the communication process to drive employees’ focus. Understanding what information is most important adds layers of complexity to how we effectively communicate with our employees.” Cindy Rodahl, ’76 BSB Executive Vice President Human Resources and Communications Rodahl says having understanding is the greatest key to Carlson successfully managing generational differences in the workforce. “Creating forums that allow employees from different generations to work together creates the opportunity to see individuals through a different lens,” she says. “One such opportunity is reverse mentoring. This allows a leader to be paired with an employee from a different generation with the specific purpose of the employee providing perspective and insight to the leader that might not be regularly accessible otherwise.” Companies Benefited from Selective Hiring and Technology Once the economy starting retracting during the recession and unemployment went up, companies had a chance to be more selective in their hiring, as more and more people vied for scarce positions. “If you look at the performance of corporate America and its improvement in productivity and in equity markets, it is because it has been able to hire well,” says Jeffrey Noddle. Now that the unemployment rate is improving, companies don’t have the selectivity they had before. Noddle doesn’t think that will have much of a deleterious effect on the companies’ welfare because they adapted in other ways during the recession. “Since the recession, companies got more proficient in technology—you saw more and more of it coming into play. With all of the new technology now being used, there won’t be as many skilled positions as before,” he says. Also, a lot of people have become accustomed to part-time work since the recession. “It seems there’s more flexibility in the workforce now,” Noddle says. “It’s not as rigid as it was before.” Seeking flexible work opportunities is a trend tied to a good work-life balance, and companies are taking notice of the role it plays in well-being and productivity. SPRING 14 CAR2L0SON SCHOOL OFG EMEMNATN A 23 Kenneth Paulus, ’83 MHA President and CEO Allina Hospitals and Clinics ALLINA HEALTH CORPORATE LOGO COLORS AND SAFE ZONE Health Care Employment Has Risen Amid Changing Labor Market As a result of the Affordable Care Act, Kenneth Paulus notes that employment PANTONE: 7688 C at health care PANTONE: 7489 C COLOR BRIDGE BOOK COLOR BRIDGE BOOK organizations continues THE PLUS to SERIES grow. “That said,THE PLUS the SERIES CMYK: 65.20.0.5 CMYK: 40.0.62.8 recession has had a direct RGB: 72-158-impact 210 on patient RGB: 147-volumes,193-125 HTML: 489ed2 HTML: 93c17d with hospital utilization down across the nation,” he says. “As a result, much of the growth is in ambulatory and outpatient settings—locations of care that are less costly and closer to the patient’s home.” Paulus says hiring in today’s market has also changed markedly. “Like other industries, we are experiencing and learning about the demands of the next generation of workers,” he says. “They tend to be somewhat less loyal to any given organization and question the authority of a big organization more so than others. They are comfortable asking questions of leadership and demand regular and transparent communication.” The new generation also tends to have a commitment to community service and an interest in playing a meaningful role in making a difference as part of their day-to-day work. PANTONE: 5555 C COLOR BRIDGE BOOK THE PLUS SERIES CMYK: 55.0.45.30 RGB: 83-150-125 HTML: 53967d PANTONE: 423 C COLOR BRIDGE BOOK THE PLUS SERIES CMYK: 0.0.0.50 RGB: 147-149-152 HTML: 939598 Contact: Adrian Lewis Creative Services Allina Hospitals & Clinics 2925 Chicago Ave, Mpls, 55407 Internal Mail Route: 10003 Phone: 612.262.5307 Read an expanded version of this feature at carlsonschoolmagazine.com Jeffrey Noddle Retired Executive Chairman SUPERVALU, Inc.


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