Trends for 2008

2007

With the New Year fast approaching, it's not uncommon for people to talk about changes they plan on making for the next year. And as far as the workplace is concerned, Canadian newspaper the Chronicle Herald has made a few predictions of their own.

While largely pessimistic, recruiter Gerald Walsh of Halifax, Nova Scotia seems to be well on the mark with some of these trends, which were largely set in motion in 2007.

So, what can we expect more of in 2008?

  • More younger, less qualified managers
  • Increased tension between the generations
  • More workplace flexibility in terms of hours and location
  • Less education, more training for hires
  • More attention found on brining in the right hire – not too much nor too little experience, but just right
  • Healthier workplaces – attitudes, mental, physical, and all-round wellness
It seems that if these predictions hold, companies are starting to better recognize the important of employee wellness. Call it the cost of health care premiums that might be doing it or the realization that too many sick and stressed employees makes for decreased productivity, etc. Nevertheless, this, along with more flexibility are two major positives that I'd like to see continue into the New Year.

What does concern me is the continued bad cycle of hiring ill-prepared people (I believe the article refers to them as upwardly mobile) into management positions. Not only is it bad for them – these young managers face situations that they don't know how to handle and often fail – but it's bad for the company as a whole and it's particularly bad for the morale of their subordinates.

Let's continue to take advantage of the positives in this list while working to correct some of the other ills that befall the workplace. These predictions are likely to occur, simply because I've already seen them happening in 2007 – these problems are hardly revolutionary, they're just ones that aren't likely to change soon.

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