Time to Employee Engagement

Quite a relevant question, especially in the current times when everything is so volatile and war for talent is on full swing. Multi-generational workforce that blends experience with fresh talent is what organizations world over aim for – and to manage this varied workforce it is important that employees feel engaged in the company.

But before I delve into the importance of employee engagement, let’s understand what is employee engagement and how will it benefit your organization, if your employees are engaged.

Employee Engagement in simple terms is an enthusiasm, which an employee feels with regards to his/her work. In other words, it is the measure of employees’ passion and devotion for their work.

So now you know, why employee engagement is important for any organization. But this is just a tip of an iceberg. Here I am sharing five important reasons why employee engagement is important and how engaged employees can –

  1. Boost productivity – Finding ways to engage people by giving them a challenge or more responsibilities mean you’re boosting your organization’s productivity.
  2. Enhance your customer satisfaction – The most engaged employees are more inclined towards making an effort that translates into buzzing productivity levels, a happier sales force, and a more credible product pitch.
  3. Retain the top talent and performers – Engaged employees are involved and invested in their roles and are therefore less likely to leave their job.
  4. Create a positive company culture – Creating a culture of employee engagement requires “checking in with their employees to ensure that the company’s mission is aligned according to the manner their current employees are working.”
  5. Engagement is a symbol of success – Engaged employees are engaged not because they’re productive or easy to work with, but because they feel their work matters. They feel valued. And when their successes are recognized, employees will feel like they’ve succeeded in making a meaningful impact at work.

The major challenge faced by companies in these modern times is keeping their employees happier, engaged, and productive at work. Just like parent’s rear and pamper their kids, employers have to take care of their employees, take good care of them, appreciate them on their achievements, and trust them for their contributions. Good leaders with good interpersonal skills try to ensure this environment in the company for the betterment.

A lot of studies have been conducted in this field that confirms a strong connection between employee engagement and performance. Some of the studies conducted also indicate a robust bottom line case that shows a clear connection between the performance of the employees and the way they feel at work. This is a clear conclusion about the fact that the traditional definition of engagement that used to say “the willingness of an employee to put discretionary effort on the job” is insufficient to spur high performance in these modern times when demands are relentlessly increasing. The issue is that the term ‘willing’ is not necessarily ‘able’.

Many managers would likely tell you that their employees are fully engaged with their company and work, however, unfortunately, that’s not the case: a Gallup-conducted study found that 87% of worldwide employees are not engaged. That is a major problem and many companies are not aware that they have an internal issue.

Before we go further, let’s define what an engaged employee is.

The “engaged employee” is defined as one who is motivated, enthusiastic, and supportive about their work and takes action to improve the organization’s reputation and interests in a positive and proactive way.

147%: Another finding from that Gallup study: companies that have highly engaged employees and encourage and support employee engagement outperform their peers by up to 147% in earnings per share.

84%: Additionally, according to research from Nielsen, 84% of people trust recommendations from friends and family above all other forms of marketing. The same study found that content-based advertising was the second most trusted advertising source.

The Areas Family Law Deals With

Family law is an area of law that primarily deals with family and domestic matters. Here’s a brief list of the topics it covers:

  • Marriage
  • Divorce
  • Child custody
  • Property division
  • Spousal maintenance
  • Inheritance

However, this isn’t an exhaustive list, as family lawyers in Melbourne can assist with a variety of legal aspects. When you consider topics under the umbrella of family and relationships, there are many that come to mind. For example, inheritance is one area covered by family law, as the distribution of property between family members is certainly a family matter. Read on to learn more about family law and the areas it deals with.

Legislation Covering Family Law

In Australia, most of the family law topics mentioned above are covered by the Family Law Act, enacted in 1975. It’s a federal law, which means that it applies to the whole of the federation of Australia. It’s a broad piece of legislation that covers a huge geographical area and a lot of legal matters that concern the family. The legislation brought consistency to family laws throughout Australia. The Family Court of Australia is the authority covering most of Australia’s family law matters.

The Federal Family Law Act (1975)

This Act not only presented cohesive legislation for the entire country, but it also abolished some of the cumbersome processes which accompanied situations like divorce. Ultimately, it streamlined and modernised the process for families and family lawyers in Melbourne and across Australia. Here’s how it deals with the following matters:

  • Marriage – The law recognises marriages contracted inside and outside Australia, provided they were conducted in accordance with jurisdictional laws. Generally, conditions for annulment of marriage have to do with the legality of the marriage in relation to the laws under which it was conducted. If one partner could be proven to have been under the legal age at the time, the marriage could be considered invalid.
  • Divorce – Divorce is recognised locally or from abroad once it conforms with the laws of the granting jurisdiction. This law introduced ‘No-Fault Divorce’, which can be granted after a one-year separation. This requires no fault to be found for the divorce to be valid, as was the case with the Matrimonial Causes Act of 1961.
  • Child Custody – Divorce isn’t granted unless suitable arrangements are made for children under the age of 18. The children’s best interests are always the main priority. Some matters regarding custody may refer to local laws rather than federal laws. The Child Support Assessment Act of 1989 is significant here.
  • Property Division ­– The court endeavours to decide in favour of the best interests of all parties rather than a 50% split arrangement.
  • Spousal Maintenance – Divorced individuals without financial means may apply for financial support from former spouses. In Western Australia, this comes under the Family Court of Western Australia.

In Conclusion

Should you require legal assistance in Victoria relating to family law, make sure you look for reputable family lawyers in Melbourne. They can provide you with legal advice and give you the correct guidance needed for your circumstances.

How options and futures work in the share market

The derivatives market can be confusing for beginners. Here, traders buy and sell financial contracts that derive value from an underlying asset. The asset could be a stock in the share market, for example. The value of a derivatives contract fluctuates with every dip and rise of the stock price. Traders bet on these movements to book profits through futures and options contracts.

Understanding futures and options

A futures contract is a financial agreement between a buyer and a seller. The buyer agrees to buy a set of assets (e.g. a pre-decided number of shares) from the seller by a specific expiry date for a predetermined price. Futures contracts are traded freely on the stock exchanges. It is possible to buy and sell futures contracts even when share trading online.

An options contract is like a futures contract but with one key difference: You are not obliged to buy or sell the underlying asset by the expiry date.

There are two types of options: call option and put option.

·        Call option

The buyer has the right to purchase the asset at a predetermined strike price on or before the date of expiry. Here, the buyer pays a premium to the seller. If the asset value increases, the value of the call option rises too.

·        Put option

The seller has the right to sell the asset at the strike price any time before expiry. Any decrease in the underlying asset value makes the put option more lucrative. So, the contract protects the seller from the risk of loss.

Trading futures and options contracts

Buying and selling derivatives in the share market is complex. Take a quick look at how it all works.

  • Trading futures: Buying a futures contract is like buying shares but not taking delivery yet. When trading in equities, you must pay the full value of the shares upfront. This is the margin money.

Whenever you settle the contract (buy or sell), the purchase or sale price is the asset’s closing price on that date. If exiting the contract before expiry, you have two choices: (1) settle the contract by paying or collecting the dues; (2) write an opposing contract to nullify the trade.

  • Trading call options: You buy a call option by paying a premium. But this is not the full price of the underlying asset. So, a buyer will lose only this amount if the stock moves adversely. The seller, however, stands to lose a substantial sum and must deposit a margin as security. For volatile contracts, this margin may go up to 60%.

To settle a call option, the buyer either pays the dues or squares off their position by selling an identical set of call options. Meanwhile, a seller has to buy equivalent call options to square off the trade.

  • Trading put options: The put option works like the call option. But whereas you buy a call option expecting the share market to appreciate, you buy a put option in bearish times.

Again, to settle the contract, one could pay off the dues or write an opposing trade.

Conclusion

Futures and options allow you to profit from the shares sitting idle in your account. You can transfer the risk in your portfolio by employing derivatives contracts efficiently based on how the share market is moving. But to do this well, it may help to open a trading account with a broker of good standing like Kotak Securities. They have dedicated research teams that provide regular reports and analysis on the derivatives market. With research and the right trading strategies in place, you can take advantage of the derivatives trade.

What is brand development and why is it so important

Brand identity construction is very important for companies especially for those that are at the beginning of their experience on a market. For example, a start-up may invest time and resources on brand development in order to be known and recognized by users and consumers for specific values and characteristics. On the other hand, a large company with a consolidated brand positioning needs to work everyday on its strengthening, in order to benefit from it and to generate revenue opportunities.

So, let’s see what brand development is and why is it so important for the growth of a business.

What is brand development

Brand development activities are a series of processes that help a brand to grow within a market or to reinforce its positioning in it. This is the reason why the actions made during the start-up phase will be different from those carried out over the years to come. However, all of them have the same goal: to help the brand to increase its popularity and to improve its market positioning.

The main phases of brand development

Brand development process consists of different phases with different purposes.

First of all there is the strategic phase. You will develop the strategy supported by an expert. The strategy must be well structured with a detailed description of actions, objectives and timelines, and it also must correspond with the main goals written in the business plan.

The second phase is the pragmatic one. You will define your company image by choosing its graphic look. In this phase will be created the logo and all the other elements for the online and offline communication.

Then there is the operational phase during which will be carried out the planned actions. For example, if you are a fashion start-up company it will be very important for your business to take part in fashion shows, parties and events. Goals and methods of the participation will be different according to the brand positioning and its history but they will be still useful to reach the next phase.

This is the strengthening one. Think always about our example: after a few years your fashion company will be not a start-up anymore. It will have gained a good positioning in the market. So, when you will take part in an event or a show, your goal will be no longer to make your brand known but to strengthen its positioning in the market through the right relationships.

Why is brand development important for your business

Let’s recap: brand development activities help to construct and reinforce brand identity. They are fundamental for business development in order to always create new sales opportunities.

On one hand, they help the brand to tell and communicate its identity, made up of unique features and values, in order to be easily recognized by users; on the other hand they allow to strengthen these values and to reinforce the market positioning in terms of reputation and, of course, of economic one.

So, it is easy to understand why brand development is so important for the origin and the development of a business. It does not matter what the sector of the company is or what its dimensions are: relying on an expert in brand management will be necessary to obtain an adequate market positioning and the returns foreseen in the business plan.