Jargon just poor communication
• Thank you for the article “HR jargon? It’s just an insult to our intelligence” (News, 11 July).
Having for the first time attended university to complete an open learning masters degree, I was amused by the amount of jargon used, as well as the extensive use of over-complicated language – where words of no more than two syllables would have been sufficient.
In my class there was a mixture of all levels of HR, yet all of us have been completely amazed at the jargon that has been used.
Why is it that certain individuals assume the more technical the language used, the more intelligent or clever they will seem? The same happens when reading business books/journals. While some of the articles I read for my degree are extremely interesting, the language/jargon that they use can be extremely off-putting.
One of the essential skills we look for in employees is the ability to communicate at all levels. Why is it that we sometimes forget this should also be the case for middle and senior management? After all, if the people who drive the business forward cannot understand the messaging that comes from the top, how can a company ever expect to achieve its objectives?
I was brought up on the KISS principle “keep it simple, stupid” or “keep it short and sweet”. The sooner we realise that simple terms and straightforward communication will achieve far more than the over-complicated use of words and “trendy” jargon, the more successful we will become.
Why won’t CIPD give me a break?
• I was disappointed to discover that while the CIPD allows a break from membership for those on maternity leave, it does not allow those of us having a break from employment to broaden our horizons and go travelling to have a similar scheme. While my company runs a successful employment break scheme, the CIPD does not.
I have been told if I do not pay my membership for the year I am away, I will have to re-register upon my return and pay on top of this the year’s membership fee.
While I appreciate a person in my situation may not go back to the profession, surely there could be a year limit on it which would allow us to return on the favourable terms on which we left.
I have passed my core management module but because the results did not come through until July and my membership ran out at the end of June I will no doubt have to prove all this upon my return as well.
Other views from behind the wheel
• In your article “Driving the message home”, in which you discuss the risks to health for long distance company car drivers (feature, July 4), you forget to mention two vital contributors. These are the unstinting attention of the police to obtain as many bookings and prosecutions as possible out of the driving public; and the proliferation of cameras in areas that maximise taxation through fines, rather than to reduce accidents.
Drivers spend as much time searching for these “hazards” as they do looking in their mirrors, resulting in detriment of attention and unexpected violent braking.
Workplace health is on the agenda
• The long-awaited HSE recommendations (Personnel Today, 20 and 27 June) have raised the profile and significance of psychological well-being in the workplace. In so doing, they not only afford the individual protection against work-related stress, but highlight a set of standards in which many organisations can, and do, excel.
Many already exercise a duty of care towards personnel in the knowledge that achievement of corporate goals is dependent on the motivation, commitment and performance of the workforce.
An increasing number of organisations are outsourcing the psychological well-being of staff to specialists to foster employee mental health, development and productivity. These organisations use employee assistance providers to protect against litigation and as a management tool to address issues impacting on performance and well-being. The information, consultancy, training and statistical services available with an EAP ensures or- ganisations look beyond taking care of stressed staff to fostering a healthy work-life balance.
For many organisations, the HSE recommendations validate and promote a policy they have sponsored for some time, which is clearly reflected in employee and employer mutual well-being.
Dr Angela Hetherington
The wrong words
• Imagine my alarm when I read that HR departments were urged to, “employ disabled people because they are often better than non disabled people” (Personnel Today, 27 June).
This sort discriminatory statement if made for able-bodied staff would soon receive a strong rebuke.