“42.7 percent of all statistics are made up on the spot.” 

Steven Wright

Another addition of leadership and talent management “facts” from all over the world.  Some intuitive and some not….what do you think?

1. While most employees sought job opportunities in 2014, a majority of human resources professionals planned to stay put according to the Society for Human Resource Management HR Jobs Profile (more than 8 in 10 workers in the U.S. and Canada said they were “actively seeking new positions” in 2014 according to a survey of 900 workers by Right Management).

2. Do neat environments produce creative ideas even in those who aren’t necessarily innately conscientious? Researchers at the University of Minnesota conducted a series of experiments, the results of which were published online in 2014 in Psychological Science. College students were placed in a messy or a neat office and asked to dream up new uses for Ping-Pong balls. Those in messy spaces generated ideas that were significantly more creative, according to two independent judges, than those plugging away in offices where stacks of papers and other objects were neatly aligned.

3. Are you web surfing and answering emails in meetings? A study on mobile device etiquette by researchers at the USC Marshall School of Business and Howard University revealed that the quality of an employee’s mobile manners, even during informal meetings, have important implications for hiring, career advancement and business efficiency. Workers ages 21-30 are more than 3 times as likely those over 40 to consider it appropriate to check texts or email. Women are twice as likely as men to be offended.

4. Massive open online courses (MOOCs) have grown in populuarity.  However, new research suggests a high drop-out rate.  Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania tracked more than 1 million students and found that completion rates were higher on average for courses with lower workloads for students and fewer homework assignments, about 6 percent compared with 2.5 percent, according to study results released in December 2013.

5. A survey of 3,000 employees in 20 U.S. companies by the Deloitte University Leadership Center for Inclusion found that 61 percent of the workers purposely downplay their differences (e.g., someone being hesitant to share about a medical disability or avoid discussing childcare issues to avoid the “motherhood penalty”).

6. Looking for a new job?  A new survey from CareerBuilder finds that nearly half (49 percent) of employers know within the first five minutes of an interview whether a candidate is a good or bad fit for the position, and 87 percent know within the first 15 minutes. Click on the survey link to read some common and memorable mistakes guaranteed to impress future employers.

7. According to a 2014 study published in the journal Ergonomics from nearly 2,000 employees working in seven different office types, workplace layout has a surprising effect on rates of sick leave. Researchers found a ‘significant excess risk’ of short sick-leave spells in three types of open-plan office, especially among women. The study also revealed a higher prevalence of both short sick-leave spells and a higher number of sick days among men in flex-offices: open-plan layouts with no individual workstations, but some meeting rooms.

8. Americans work longer hours, have fewer vacation days and leisure hours, and spend as much or more time cooking, cleaning and caring for family as their international counterparts. Compared with 36 other nations, the United States is the only country that does not have a national paid leave policy for mothers and fathers after a baby is born. The United States’ ranking is 14 out of 36 on the index list of countries whose people have the highest “general satisfaction with life.” Americans, on average, said they would rate their overall satisfaction as 7, on a scale of 0 to 10. The index average was 6.6.

9. Among U.S. News’ Best Jobs, the most-stressed workers also tend to be the highest-paid. While all of the other low-stress jobs in the analysis (only five of the 125 jobs analyzed are “low-stress,” as it turns out) pay less than $40,000 annually, the job of physical therapist – “below-average” in stress – pays nearly $80,000 annually.

10. One of the biggest problems with virtual meetings is that it is hard for participants to build rapport with each other, a hurdle cited by 75% of 3,301 businesspeople surveyed in 2012 by RW3, a New York culture and leadership training company. The absence of nonverbal cues such as facial expressions makes many people hesitant to speak up and makes it harder to pay attention. In the survey, 71% of participants cited a lack of participation by others as a problem with virtual meetings.

11. When it comes to leadership, a moderate amount of narcissism can go a long way. According to University of Illinois psychology professor and study leader Emily Grijalva, narcissists are more likely to emerge as group leaders. However, after a certain point, too much narcissism is very likely to undermine a person’s effectiveness as a leader.

Back to research some new talent development facts….Be well….

Kenneth Nowack, Ph.D. is a licensed psychologist (PSY13758) and President & Chief Research Officer/Co-Founder of Envisia Learning, is a member of the Consortium for Research on Emotional Intelligence in Organizations. Ken also serves as the Associate Editor of Consulting Psychology Journal: Practice and Research. His recent book Clueless: Coaching People Who Just Don’t Get It is available for free for a limited time by signing up for free blog updates (Learn more at our website)

Posted in Engagement, Leadership Development, Relate, Selection, Talent Management

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