Top Management Gets Mediocre Marks

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<p><strong>Boston &mdash; July 18</strong><br />Senior management gets mediocre marks from human resource professionals for communicating with employees, according to a survey by Novations Group, a global consulting and training firm based in Boston.&nbsp; </p><p>Nearly half of the 2,000 HR executives surveyed give top management a grade of C or less.<br /><br />In regard to the question, &quot;How would you grade the effectiveness of your senior management&rsquo;s communications with employees?&quot;&nbsp; the answers are as follows:</p><ul><li>A:&nbsp; 14 percent</li><li>B:&nbsp; 39 percent</li><li>C:&nbsp; 32 percent</li><li>D:&nbsp; 13 percent</li><li>F: 2 percent&nbsp; <br /></li></ul><p>&nbsp;</p><p>The findings are a warning to organizations that they are failing to connect with their most important asset: their employees,&quot; said Rebecca Hefter, Novations senior vice president for training. &ldquo;HR people have a unique vantage on employee opinions and attitudes and are ideally placed to evaluate the communications effectiveness of top management.&nbsp; </p><p>&quot;The survey results aren&rsquo;t just disturbing &mdash; they&rsquo;re also startling, given the time and money devoted to internal communications.&rdquo;<br /><br />The HR executives were also asked to identify the causes of senior management&rsquo;s difficulty connecting with employees:</p><ul><li>Senior management relies too much on e-mail (and little face-to-face time with employees): <strong>35 percent</strong></li><li>Senior management assumes a single message is enough: <strong>30 percent</strong></li><li>Senior management has no feedback loop: <strong>28 percent</strong></li><li>Senior management&rsquo;s messages often lack clarity: <strong>24 percent</strong></li><li>Senior management communicates too much, too often: <strong>3 percent</strong></li></ul><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&ldquo;Interestingly, few faulted management for trying too much to communicate,&rdquo; Hefter said. &ldquo;What stands out is the inherent weakness of e-mail for employee communications &mdash; the Internet is used more and more, but there seems to be a point of diminishing returns when e-mail is relied upon so much.&nbsp; </p><p>&quot;Employees like to see and hear their management and may feel depersonalized by too much e-mail messaging instead of direct contact.&rdquo;<br /><br />The Novations Group Internet survey of 2,046 senior human resources and training and development executives was conducted by Equation Research.&nbsp;</p>

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