first_imgThis week’s guruProduction or seduction, Latinos leave us trailingGuru has always had a soft spot for the Italians. He had a little chuckle tohimself while commenting on Italian research that revealed seven out of 10Italians indulge in flirtatious behaviour and sexual innuendo in the workplace. The study concluded that this helps encourage a relaxing and supportiveatmosphere in the office. All very amusing until this week a joint CBI and TUC study revealed Italyhas over-taken the UK in terms of the productivity of its workforce. Guru accepts that the Italians are better lovers, better dressers and drivemore glamorous cars than the British – but better workers as well? No it can’tbe true. That’s not funny at all. Time flies when Bacus is a friend The annual CIPD conference in Harrogate can be a confusing experience. Last Friday morning, Guru was having a heated discussion about the problemsof outsourcing when an Abba tribute band started playing next to him. He checked his watch and was surprised to realise it was 3am. One minuteyou’re listening to Robert Kaplan, professor of leadership at Harvard BusinessSchool, and the next you’re getting Tony Hadley’s signature (aka Spandau Balletfront man) in a local club. Stella and Foster played a dominant role in this year’s conference – andwe’re not talking about former MI5 head Stella Rimmington and Olympic goldmedallist Tim Foster, who were speakers at the event. It wasn’t Guru’s fault, he accidentally spent an afternoon with TV winetaster Oz Clarke on the Personnel Today stand – the man doesn’t know the meaningof the word spittoon. At least Guru wasn’t the only one. In Dr Clive Morton’s seminar,three-quarters of the HR delegates claimed to understand their organisation’sbusiness strategy. But only a quarter admitted to understanding the HRstrategy. You’ll have to work that one out because Guru’s head hurts. Sun shines on share buying Guru had initially welcomed the Government plans to give shareholders moreof a say in how company directors are remunerated. He felt that this, coupled with Gordon Brown’s proposals announced last weekto expand employee share ownership, will help engage staff with business aimsand give them a greater sense of involvement over how their organisation isrun. But Guru has had second thoughts after reading research last week, whichshowed that people are more likely to buy shares when the sun is shining. Academics David Hirschleifer and Tyler Shumway compared data from 26 of theworld’s biggest stock exchanges and found a significant relationship betweenthe markets and sun exposure. On the New York Stock Exchange the annualised returns figure on sunny dayswas 24.8 per cent a year but on overcast days it was just 8.7 per cent. Guru is concerned that if this theory holds water then decisions by UKshareholders could be as hard to predict as the UK’s weather. Germ welfare is path to geniusA messy desk is a sign of a creative mind, well that always been Guru’sexcuse. Is it really possible to let loose your imagination if your desk isn’tstrewn with piles of papers, files and Post-it notes, reflecting your dartingintelligence and out-of-the-box thinking? Guru thinks not. But an American businessman has taken this approach to an extreme. RayKostin has not seen his desktop for 43 years. When he opened his timberbusiness in 1958 the desks in his office were brand new and clean as a whistlebut they are now buried under 80 cubic feet of paper. (This item should have appeared more than three weeks ago but the newsarticle was lost under an old pot noodle in Guru’s in-tray). Related posts:No related photos. Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. GuruOn 6 Nov 2001 in Personnel Todaylast_img

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