By Molly Kelley
Following a year of such economic and political turmoil, employees and employers are looking ahead to trends for 2010. With fears of a continued recession easing, it seems a fine time to look forward to next year’s hot issues.
Social media will increasingly impact both employers and their employees. While continuing to keep an eye on risk management to protect company brand, confidentiality and employee safety, employers are beginning to see the benefits available to them through their employee’s use of social media to spread the word. Often, a company’s greatest spokesperson is a proud and well informed employee who understands their responsibility to safeguard trade secrets and uphold the organization’s reputation.
Companies, led by their employees as much as their customers, are going green in 2010 in the hopes of capturing green. Many organizations are starting green committees within their employee base, designed to help the company run lean and green. These efforts focus on everything from recycling and waste reduction to the introduction of sustainable energy and eco-friendly products such as solar panels on roof tops and biodegradable kitchenware.
Rough economic times lead to a greater need for charity and businesses and their employees are leading the charge. Efforts range from donated assistance to individual employees to much larger charitable fund raisers for established organizations such as the United Way, Red Cross and food banks across the nation. Corporations are growing increasingly concerned with cuts to public school funding and are throwing themselves into mentoring, funding and volunteering within schools across the company to ensure that the workforce of tomorrow has what it needs today.
After doing our homework over the last decade, Americans have learned that to keep up with the rest of the world, we need to be operating 24 hours a day. This trend presents challenges for managers and employees asked to interact with colleagues and customers round the world at all times of our day and night. Access to 24 hour child care may become an expected benefit of our more global organizations.
These trends and many others will mean continued flux in the year to come for both employees and employers, along with a great deal of opportunities to capitalize on change and growth.