View from the Bridge: Why do leaders fail?

February 12th, 2016

 View from the Bridge header

Happy belated New Years to you!

The Vertical Bridge team is anticipating an exciting year. One of the goals we set in late 2015 was to assert ourselves as experts in the emerging discipline of Followership. It’s a compelling concept that takes a more holistic look at your organization’s performance. For decades, a big emphasis in HR was on developing leaders and while no one would argue the leadership concept is wrong, Followership contends that it is an incomplete paradigm. Followership asserts that both followers and leaders in an organization “co-produce” leadership. This magic alchemy is what can unleash the gains in productivity that everyone seeks.
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Are you ready to have your best year ever???

January 26th, 2016

2016 Planning & Goal Setting Tips

Author: Laurie Caldi, CHRP, HR Consultant

This past holiday season, I kept hearing John Lennon ask, “And what have you done?  Another year older, and a new one just begun.”  So it feels like the perfect time to talk about what we want to accomplish as we turn the calendar to 2016.

It helps to think of the end results first.  Goal setting is usually a mandatory (though often dreaded) process in the workplace, but what about all the other aspirations we have both personally and professionally?  If you want to look back on 2016 as a year full of accomplishments and personal bests, give the following approach a try.

A former boss once shared her annual ritual with me and I’ve carried on the tradition ever since.  Book an overnight retreat for yourself or for you and your partner.  Find somewhere quiet away from all of the day-to-day interruptions. The purpose?  To get away from life’s busy distractions and focus on writing down all of your goals for the coming year.  Remember, if you’re doing this with a partner, a great partnership is more than just companionship, it’s about challenging one another and helping to bring out the best in each other.  Think about goals for all aspects of your life – fitness goals, trips you want to take, roles you covet, how you want to give back, professional aspirations, new skills to acquire, saving targets, etc.   Don’t impose any boundaries, just anything and everything you want to achieve.

Once you’ve “brain dumped” all of your ideas, make them SMART (Specific, Measureable, Attainable, Realistic and Timebound).  I know, I know we’ve overdosed on “SMART” goals, but like Maslow’s needs, tell us enough times and it eventually sticks! J  It’s important to add a column for timing and add the month or quarter for each goal, and gradually, it starts to shape how the coming year can unfold for you.

Remember: you start by focusing on the end game.  It’s not unlike a process my teacher once guided me through in high school, when he asked us to write our own eulogy.  What do you want to achieve and what do you want to be known for?  Time is fleeting and how much of it any of us have is the big unknown.  What will you do with your time?

So, instead of making resolutions (that usually fizzle before Cupid shoots his arrow), take some time and steal away to build this year’s goals.  It’s amazing what we can accomplish when we set our minds to it.  The key is allowing ourselves the space and focus to imagine what you truly want to achieve.  A year is the perfect span of time to really make a dent in new quests and adventures, and hopefully you’ll have some fun doing it. Then, 365 days later, get ready to review your progress next year end at a similar reenergizing getaway.

Happy planning!

View from the Bridge: Christmas is NOT about Starbuck’s red cups

December 10th, 2015


Each year as we head into the holiday season, fresh controversy stirs up over the meaning of Christmas and how we acknowledge it. This year’s lightning rod was Starbucks’ red cups and the absence of snowflakes!

Whatever your personal beliefs, be they spiritual or your opinions on Starbucks’ cup designs, it is important as an employer not to unintentionally exclude people during your holiday celebrations. Read more

View from the Bridge: Warning signs you need to fire a bad employee

October 29th, 2015

View from the Bridge


This month we’ve been asked on a number of occasions by clients “should I let someone go?” It’s a tough decision for any employer to make. There are a lot of things to take into consideration such as length of time the person has been working with the company, their role within the company and what circumstances have lead up to the point that you’re even asking this question.
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View from the Bridge: Low cost ideas to boost employee motivation

September 29th, 2015


In the last issue of View from the Bridge we shared the news that Vertical Bridge was a finalist for the “Best External HR Consultancy of the Year” at the 2015 Canadian HR Awards held in Toronto on September 17th. While we didn’t win the award, we were honored to be a finalist among an amazing group of “winning companies”, congratulations to everyone!

Last month we took a look at how to create an award winning team. Now we’re looking at ways to ensure that you keep them happy. I’m pleased to share a great article written by one of our Advisory Board members,Karolyn St. Pierre that provides some great advice on how to reward your employees without breaking the bank!
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Low Cost Motivation: Rewards don’t have to bust the budget

September 23rd, 2015

low cost motivation

Author:  Karolyn St. Pierre, Vertical Bridge Advisory Board Member

Dedicated, hardworking—and maybe even long-suffering—employees deserve rewards. Sometimes the appropriate reward is a well-deserved raise, but money isn’t always the best solution. And in today’s world of tight budgets, it’s often not even a possibility.  But employers wanting to show appreciation have other options for inexpensive rewards.  Here are a few tips on how to make a nonmonetary program effective.

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7 key points when building an award-winning team

July 30th, 2015

There is no “one size fits all” answer to how to create an award winning team, but there are some fundamental components that need to be there. The following are seven key things that every employer should consider when building a winning team.

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