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Classified Post HR Conference 2014 offers fresh perspectives

Published on Thursday, 18 Dec 2014
David Goldsmith
Catherine Ng
Margaret Cheng

Internationally renowned speakers equip HR managers to handle the challenges ahead.

Human resources practitioners, people managers and corporate leaders will have the opportunity to learn about, and discuss solutions to, the most pressing employee relationship issues at today’s Classified Post HR Conference 2014.

The conference, which will be held at the JW Marriott Hotel Hong Kong in Admiralty, will focus on opening the doors to new ideas from internationally renowned speakers. The half-day workshop offers high-level, thought-provoking presentations on fresh perspectives and inspiring stories that aim to deepen understanding of leadership, motivation, strategic talent management, employee engagement and retention.

David Goldsmith, New York University professor and author of Paid to Think: A Leader’s Toolkit for Redefining Your Future, will be speaking on “Building effective leadership through human resource development”. 

“As HR responsibilities increasingly expand in Hong Kong and the surrounding region, it is prime time to rethink the true value of the HR managerial role, redefine human resources within a strategic context, and recharge individual performance by introducing and upgrading specific skill sets,” he says.

Goldsmith’s presentation is designed to help HR managers accomplish these outcomes by “opening their mindsets and expanding their abilities to see and lead from a more comprehensive and cohesive vantage point”.

He promises his talk will provide the tools to “alleviate pressure, erase frustration, and convert challenges to opportunities”.

Margaret Cheng, vice-president of the Hong Kong Institute of Human Resource Management (HKIHRM) and group head of human resources at Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing (HKEx), will be speaking on “Creating opportunities out of a multigenerational workforce”.
She says such a workforce, with its different mindsets, experiences and expectations, poses a challenge to HR professionals. 

“Like it or not, making the best out of a multigenerational workplace is a must-do for HR professionals,” Cheng says. “Just as in an ordinary family, in today’s office, three to four generations of people who have been brought up with different social, economic and educational backgrounds have to work together.

“The more elderly department managers come to us saying they hope to acquire more skills in understanding and befriending the younger employees in their early twenties – who behave very much like their own children or grandchildren.”

Cheng says it is members of generation Y in particular who feel under pressure from the age differences in the workplace. “We’ve come across Gen Y employees who have become middle managers, who tell us how difficult it is to be in the ‘sandwich class’ between the baby boomers/Gen X and Gen Z,” she says. 

“Of course, it is not uncommon to hear complaints from the young employees, telling us their bosses are on totally different wavelengths, making effective communications impossible.” 

However, she says, problems in the workplace are also the result of factors other than age differences.

“A faster pace of social and economic development and the more speedy flow of ideas and information may lead to an apparent generation gap in the workplace,” she says. 

“A multigenerational workforce can become highly productive by understanding the characteristics of different generations, clearing up some fixed beliefs and misconceptions, capitalising on the strengths of each generation, and facilitating effective communications among them.”

Catherine Ng, lecturer at the University of Hong Kong’s Institute for China Business, will also present a session, called “Case studies: Managing human capital trends and challenges in Greater China”. 

The sessions will be followed by a panel discussion on how leaders can use human resources to engage diverse teams and different generations in an increasingly digital world. 

Afterwards, a leadership luncheon will give guests the opportunity to discuss issues highlighted during the conference with several executive trainers. 

These include Goldsmith and Ng; Asha Sridhar, leadership and organisational consultant; Dr Rhoda Yuen, a seasoned psychologist and corporate trainer; and Tan Chew Yen, a fellow member trainer of the International Association of NLP (neuro-linguistic programming).

Conference Itinerary


Building effective leadership through human resources development
David Goldsmith
New York University professor and author of Paid to Think: A Leader’s Toolkit for Redefining Your Future

Case studies: Managing human capital trends and challenges in Greater China
Catherine Ng

Lecturer, Institute for China Business, University of Hong Kong

Creating opportunities out of a multi-generational workforce
Margaret Cheng

Vice-president, Hong Kong Institute of Human Resources Management, and group head of human resources, Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing 

Panel Discussion: How leaders can use HR to engage diverse teams and different generations in an increasingly digital world
David Goldsmith, Catherine Ng and Margaret Cheng

Facilitator: Tom Eves, editor, Classified Post

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