MALTA E PIANIFICAZIONE SUCCESSORIA

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MALTA E PIANIFICAZIONE SUCCESSORIA

MALTA giurisdizione ideale per la pianificazione successoria, ecco la nuova legge UE sull’eredità

Prende forma il criterio della residenza abituale NON solo per le conseguenze fiscali

Contatta MALTAway, per la protezione tua, della tua famiglia, della tua azienda, del tuo patrimonio……le norme successorie e della tassa di successione in paesi diversi dall’italia 

MALTA RESIDENZA

MALTA TUTELA PATRIMONIO

E’ in vigore dallo scorso 17 agosto il nuovo regolamento sulle successioni. Una novità che segna, si spera una volta per tutte, la fine dei conflitti sulle regole di diritto privato internazionale, relative appunto al tema eredità, specificatamente legate ai casi transfrontalieri. Ma procediamo con ordine.

E’ legge il Regolamento n. 615/2012, normativa relativa alle successioni a causa di morte nei Paesi Ue (escluse Inghilterra, Irlanda e Danimarca, che continueranno a utilizzare le proprie norme di diritto internazionale privato). L’elemento portante del documento risiede nella validità, ai fini successori, della normativa di riferimento del paese ove il soggetto possiede residenza abituale.
Come riportato infatti da un’analisi di Angelo Busani su Il Sole 24 Ore “La legge di diritto internazionale privato designa la legge materiale concretamente applicabile a una certa vicenda giuridica; la legge materiale è quella vigente nel Paese che viene indicato dalle norme di diritto internazionale privato come il Paese la cui legislazione è quella applicabile a un certo rapporto. Ogni Paese ha una propria legge di diritto internazionale privato; in Italia si tratta della legge 218 del 31 maggio 1995, il cui articolo 46 si occupa appunto del problema di quale sia la legge materiale da applicare in Italia (in particolare, in un giudizio innanzi all’autorità giudiziaria italiana) per una successione ereditaria. Il pregio del Regolamento n. 650/2012 è proprio quello di superare le diverse norme di diritto internazionale privato vigenti nei Paesi Ue in materia di successione mortis causa, sostituendole con nuove norme di diritto internazionale privato, finalmente uniformi per tutti i Paesi Ue”.
Dal punto di vista pratico, facendo un esempio, non accadrà più che la legislazione italiana dichiari applicabile il diritto successorio tedesco alla successione dell’immaginario cittadino tedesco Otto Kranz (residente abituale in Italia), e che, al contempo, la legislazione successoria tedesca dichiari applicabile il diritto successorio italiano per i beni che detto signor Kranz abbia nel nostro Paese. Più nel dettaglio, entrando nel caso specifico del nostro Paese, il criterio di “collegamento” utilizzato dalla legge italiana (nella vigenza della legge 218/1995) per individuare la legge applicabile a una successione internazionale era quello della “nazionalità” del defunto; in altri termini, ritornando all’esempio precedente, la legge applicabile alla successione del signor Otto Kranz che muoia prima del 17 agosto 2015 è quella della Germania. Nel caso, invece, di decesso post 17 agosto, se gli eredi di Otto Kranz litigassero in ordine alla devoluzione dell’eredità e la lite giungesse (come in effetti deve giungere, ai sensi del Regolamento n., 650/2012) nelle aule di giustizia italiane, il giudice italiano non applicherà più la legge tedesca per decidere la lite (come sarebbe avvenuto se il decesso si fosse verificato prima del 17 agosto 2015), ma dovrà applicare la legge italiana, in quanto legge vigente nel luogo in cui il defunto aveva la sua “residenza abituale”. Sic et simpliciter.

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MALTA Blue Lagoon in the World’s top 500 sights Ultimate Travelist 2015

MALTA Blue Lagoon in the World’s top 500 sights revealed in Lonely Planet’s Ultimate Travelist 2015

maltaway_comino_lagoon

cropped-maltaway_malta_paradiso.jpg

Visit and invest in the real estate in Malta with MALTAway and travel everywhere in the world with MALTAway viaggi, free advice and low cost reservations

The top 20 of the Lonely Planet travel list is:

1. Temples of Angkor, Cambodia

2. Great Barrier Reef, Australia

3. Machu Picchu, Peru

4. Great Wall of China, China

5. Taj Mahal, India

Iguazu Falls, Brazil, Argentina, No8 in the Ultimate Travellist.

6. Grand Canyon National Park, USA

7. Colosseum, Italy

8. Iguazu Falls, Brazil-Argentina

9. Alhambra, Spain

10. Aya Sofya, Turkey

Alhambra, Spain, No9 in the Ultimate Travellist.

11. Fez Medina, Morocco

12. Twelve Apostles, Australia

13. Petra, Jordan

14. Tikal, Guatemala

15. British Museum, England

Aya Sofya, Turkey, No10 in the Ultimate Travellist.

16. Sagrada Familia, Spain

17. Fiordland National Park, New Zealand

18. Santorini, Greece

19. Galapagos Islands, Ecuador

20. Museum of Old & New Art, Australia

http://www.lonelyplanet.com/news/2015/08/17/worlds-top-500-sights-revealed-in-lonely-planets-ultimate-travelist-2015/

 

Capitalists Have a Better Plan, the shared planning decentralization

Capitalists Have a Better Plan, the shared planning decentralization

….and you have to implement your plan with MALTAway 

Maltaway is your gateway to access the global and Malta’s opportunity to relocate and protect Yourself, Your Family, Your Business, Your Asset

To early 20th-century intellectuals, capitalism looked like anarchy. Why, they wondered, would we trust deliberative, conscious guidance when building a house but not when building an economy?

It was fashionable among these socialist intellectuals to espouse “planning” as a much more rational way to organize economic activity. (F.A. Hayek wrote afamous essay on the phenomenon.) But this emphasis on central planning was utterly confused both conceptually and empirically.

Ludwig von Mises made the most obvious rejoinder, pointing out that there is “planning” in the market economy, too. The difference is that the planning is decentralized in a market, spread out among millions of entrepreneurs and resource owners, including workers. Thus, in the debate between socialism and capitalism, the question isn’t, “Should there be economic planning?” Rather, the question is, “Should we restrict the plan design to a few supposed experts put in place through the political process, or should we throw open the floodgates and receive input from millions of people who may know something vital?”

Planning is decentralized in a market, spread out among millions of entrepreneurs and resource owners, including workers. 

This second question came to be known as theknowledge problem.” Hayek pointed out that in the real world, information is dispersed among myriad individuals. For example, a factory manager in Boise might know very particular facts about the machines on his assembly line, which socialist planners in DC could not possibly take into account when directing the nation’s productive resources. Hayek argued that the price system in a market economy could be viewed as a giant “system of telecommunications,” rapidly transmitting just the essential bits of knowledge from one localized node to the others. Such a “web” arrangement (my term) avoided a bureaucratic hierarchy in which every bit of information had to flow up through the chain of command, be processed by the expert leaders, and then flow back down to the subordinates.

Complementary to Hayek’s now-better-known problem of dispersed knowledge, Mises stressed the calculation problem of socialist planning. Even if we conceded for the sake of argument that the socialist planners had access to all of the latest technical information regarding the resources and engineering know-how at their disposal, they still couldn’t rationally “plan” their society’s economic activities. They would be “groping in the dark.”

By definition, under socialism, one group (the people running the state, if we are talking about a political manifestation) owns all of the important productive resources — the factories, forests, farmland, oil deposits, cargo ships, railroads, warehouses, utilities, and so on. Thus, there can be no truly competitive markets in the “means of production” (to use Karl Marx’s term), meaning that there are no genuine prices for these items.

Because of these unavoidable facts, Mises argued, no socialist ruler could evaluate the efficiency of his economic plan, even after the fact. He would have a list of the inputs into a certain process — so many tons of steel, rubber, wood, and man-hours of various types of labor. He could contrast the inputs with the outputs they produced — so many houses or cars or bottles of soda. But how would the socialist planner know if this transformation made sense? How would the socialist planner know if he should continue with this operation in the future, rather than expanding it or shrinking it? Would a different use of those same resources produce a better result? The simple answer is that he would have no idea. Without market prices, there is no nonarbitrary way of comparing the resources used up in a particular process with the goods or services produced.

In contrast, the profit-and-loss test provides critical feedback in the market economy. The entrepreneur can ask accountants to attach money prices to the resources used up, and the goods and services produced, by a particular process. Although not perfect, such a method at least provides guidance. Loosely speaking, a profitable enterprise is one that directs scarce resources into the channel that the consumers value the most, as demonstrated through their spending decisions.

A profitable enterprise is one that directs scarce resources into the channel that the consumers value the most, as demonstrated through their spending decisions.

In contrast, what does it mean if a particular business operation isunprofitable? It means that its customers are not willing to spend enough money on the output to recoup the monetary expenses (including interest) necessary to buy the inputs. But the reason those inputs had certain market prices attached to them is that other operations were bidding on them, too. Thus, in Mises’s interpretation, an unprofitable business enterprise is siphoning away resources from channels where consumers would prefer (indirectly and implicitly) that the resources be deployed.

We must never forget that the economic problem is not to ask, “Will devoting these scarce resources to project X make at least some people better off, compared to doing nothing with these resources?” Rather, the true economic problem is to ask, “Will devoting these scarce resources to project X make people better off compared to using the resources in some other project Y?”

To answer this question, we need a way of reducing heterogeneous inputs and outputs into a common denominator: money prices. This is why Mises stressed the primacy of private property and the use of sound money as pillars of rational resource allocation.

http://fee.org/freeman/capitalists-have-a-better-plan/?utm_source=Foundation+for+Economic+Education+Current+Contacts&utm_campaign=2ea7a40571-FEE_Daily_8_16_2015&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_77ef1bd48e-2ea7a40571-14194549

The Slow-Motion Financial Suicide of the Roman Empire

The Slow-Motion Financial Suicide of the Roman Empire
The Bailout State Is as Old as Rome

More than 2,000 years before America’s bailouts and entitlement programs, the ancient Romans experimented with similar schemes. The Roman government rescued failing institutions, canceled personal debts, and spent huge sums on welfare programs. The result wasn’t pretty.

Roman politicians picked winners and losers, generally favoring the politically well connected — a practice that’s central to the welfare state of modern times, too. As numerous writers have noted, these expensive rob-Peter-to-pay-Paul efforts were major factors in bankrupting Roman society. They inevitably led to even more destructive interventions. Rome wasn’t built in a day, as the old saying goes — and it took a while to tear it down as well. Eventually, when the republic faded into an imperial autocracy, the emperors attempted to control the entire economy.

Debt forgiveness in ancient Rome was a contentious issue that was enacted multiple times. One of the earliest Roman populist reformers, the tribune Licinius Stolo, passed a bill that was essentially a moratorium on debt around 367 BC, a time of economic uncertainty. The legislation enabled debtors to subtract the interest paid from the principal owed if the remainder was paid off within a three-year window. By 352 BC, the financial situation in Rome was still bleak, and the state treasury paid many defaulted private debts owed to the unfortunate lenders. It was assumed that the debtors would eventually repay the state, but if you think they did, then you probably think Greece is a good credit risk today.

In 357 BC, the maximum permissible interest rate on loans was roughly 8 percent. Ten years later, this was considered insufficient, so Roman administrators lowered the cap to 4 percent. By 342, the successive reductions apparently failed to mollify the debtors or satisfactorily ease economic tensions, so interest on loans was abolished altogether. To no one’s surprise, creditors began to refuse to loan money. The law banning interest became completely ignored in time.

By 133 BC, the up-and-coming politician Tiberius Gracchus decided that Licinius’s measures were not enough. Tiberius passed a bill granting free tracts of state-owned farmland to the poor. Additionally, the government funded the erection of their new homes and the purchase of their faming tools. It’s been estimated that 75,000 families received free land because of this legislation. This was a government program that provided complimentary land, housing, and even a small business, all likely charged to the taxpayers or plundered from newly conquered nations. However, as soon as it was permissible, many settlers thanklessly sold their farms and returned to the city. Tiberius didn’t live to see these beneficiaries reject Roman generosity, because a group of senators murdered him in 133 BC, but his younger brother Gaius Gracchus took up his populist mantle and furthered his reforms.

Tiberius, incidentally, also passed Rome’s first subsidized food program, which provided discounted grain to many citizens. Initially, Romans dedicated to the ideal of self-reliance were shocked at the concept of mandated welfare, but before long, tens of thousands were receiving subsidized food, and not just the needy. Any Roman citizen who stood in the grain lines was entitled to assistance. One rich consul named Piso, who opposed the grain dole, was spotted waiting for the discounted food. He stated that if his wealth was going to be redistributed, then he intended on getting his share of grain.

By the third century AD, the food program had been amended multiple times. Discounted grain was replaced with entirely free grain, and at its peak, a third of Rome took advantage of the program. It became a hereditary privilege, passed down from parent to child. Other foodstuffs, including olive oil, pork, and salt, were regularly incorporated into the dole. The program ballooned until it was the second-largest expenditure in the imperial budget, behind the military.It failed to serve as a temporary safety net; like many government programs, it became perpetual assistance for a permanent constituency who felt entitled to its benefits.

In 88 BC, Rome was reeling from the Social War, a debilitating conflict with its former allies in the Italian peninsula. One victorious commander was a man named Sulla, who that year became consul (the top political position in the days of the republic) and later ruled as a dictator. To ease the economic catastrophe,Sulla canceled portions of citizens’ private debt, perhaps up to 10 percent,leaving lenders in a difficult position. He also revived and enforced a maximum interest rate on loans, likely similar to the law of 357 BC. The crisis continually worsened, and to address the situation in 86 BC, a measure was passed that reduced private debts by another 75 percent under the consulships of Cinna and Marius.

Less than two decades after Sulla, Catiline, the infamous populist radical and foe of Cicero, campaigned for the consulship on a platform of total debt forgiveness. Somehow, he was defeated, likely with bankers and Romans who actually repaid their debts opposing his candidacy. His life ended shortly thereafter in a failed coup attempt.

In 60 BC, the rising patrician Julius Caesar was elected consul, and he continued the policies of many of his populist predecessors with a few innovations of his own. Once again, Rome was in the midst of a crisis. In this period, private contractors called tax farmers collected taxes owed to the state. These tax collectors would bid on tax-farming contracts and were permitted to keep any surplus over the contract price as payment. In 59 BC, the tax-farmer industry was on the brink of collapse. Caesar forgave as much as one-third of their debt to the state. The bailout of the tax-farming market must have greatly affected Roman budgets and perhaps even taxpayers, but the catalyst for the relief measure was that Caesar and his crony Crassus had heavily invested in the struggling sector.

In 33 AD, half a century after the collapse of the republic, Emperor Tiberius faced a panic in the banking industry. He responded by providing a massive bailout of interest-free loans to bankers in an attempt to stabilize the market. Over 80 years later, Emperor Hadrian unilaterally forgave 225 million denarii in back taxes for many Romans, fostering resentment among others who had painstakingly paid their tax burdens in full.

Emperor Trajan conquered Dacia (modern Romania) early in the second century AD, flooding state coffers with booty. With this treasure trove, he funded a social program, the alimenta, which competed with private banking institutions by providing low-interest loans to landowners while the interest benefited underprivileged children. Trajan’s successors continued this programuntil thedevaluation of the denarius, the Roman currency, rendered the alimenta defunct.

By 301 AD, while Emperor Diocletian was restructuring the government, the military, and the economy, he issued the famous Edict of Maximum Prices. Rome had become a totalitarian state that blamed many of its economic woes on supposed greedy profiteers. The edict defined the maximum prices and wages for goods and services. Failure to obey was punishable by death. Again, to no one’s surprise, many vendors refused to sell their goods at the set prices, and within a few years, Romans were ignoring the edict.

Enormous entitlement programs also became the norm in old Rome. At its height, the largest state expenditure was an army of 300,000–600,000 legionaries. The soldiers realized their role and necessity in Roman politics, and consequently their demands increased. They required exorbitant retirement packages in the form of free tracts of farmland or large bonuses of gold equal to more than a decade’s worth of their salary. They also expected enormous and periodic bonuses in order to prevent uprisings.

The Roman experience teaches important lessons. As the 20th-century economist Howard Kershner put it, “When a self-governing people confer upon their government the power to take from some and give to others, the process will not stop until the last bone of the last taxpayer is picked bare.” Putting one’s livelihood in the hands of vote-buying politicians compromises not just one’s personal independence, but the financial integrity of society as well. The welfare state, once begun, is difficult to reverse and never ends well.

Rome fell to invaders in 476 AD, but who the real barbarians were is an open question. The Roman people who supported the welfare state and the politicians who administered it so weakened society that the Western Roman Empire fell like a ripe plum that year. Maybe the real barbarians were those Romans who had effectively committed a slow-motion financial suicide.

http://fee.org/freeman/the-slow-motion-financial-suicide-of-the-roman-empire/?utm_source=Foundation+for+Economic+Education+Current+Contacts&utm_campaign=3d89708748-FEE_Daily_8_15_2015&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_77ef1bd48e-3d89708748-14194549

What Separates Great HR Leaders from the Rest

What Separates Great HR Leaders from the Rest

Sorry ladies…in these cases you re not the best, insteas overall you are….(great mismanagement in the corporations)

There’s an interesting gender wrinkle in our data, although we’re not quite sure what to make of it. According to our data, HR has the highest percentage of female leaders (66%). Overall, female leaders were rated at the 45th percentile while male leaders were at the 43rd percentile, but at the very top levels it flipped, and the senior-most men in HR were rated more highly—male senior leaders were rated at the 52nd percentile, and female senior leaders at the 47th. These differences, while small, are statistically significant. When we look at the overall data for male versus female senior managers in the other functions, males are at the 48th percentile and females at the 53rd. Only in HR, Engineering, and Safety do male senior leaders score higher than their female counterparts.

AUG15_17_116474536

HR seems to have become every manager and employee’s favorite corporate punching bag, vying with IT for the dubious title of most-irritating function. We have seen a parade of articles recently calling for HR to be blown up, split in two, or at the very least, redesigned.

Perhaps this is a good moment to evaluate what it is we really want from our HR leaders—and what we don’t. Over the last five years, Zenger Folkman has collected 360-degree feedback data on 2,187 HR leaders. These leaders are spread across hundreds of different organizations with 68% of those leaders located in the US, 11% in Asia, 8% in Europe, 7% in Latin America, 4% in Canada, and 1% in Africa. Comparing assessments of leaders in the HR function with those of leaders in other functions, our data suggest that the typical HR leader is seen as is six percentile points below average.

W150731_ZENGER_LEADERSHIPEFFECTIVENESS

 

We analyzed the data in two different ways. First, we contrasted the results for the 2,187 HR leaders in our dataset with those of 29,026 leaders in other functions. We were able to identify a few key skills that were common strengths of those in HR and some that appeared fairly frequently as weaknesses. Second, we rank-ordered 49 leadership behaviors for all those in HR from the most negative to the most positive behaviors.

Strengths of HR Leaders

Developing and coaching others. One of the most positive areas for HR leaders in general was that they were truly concerned about developing others. This set them apart from leaders in other functions, who did not score highly on this skill. They were also rated positively on providing coaching, acting as a mentor, and giving feedback in a helpful way.

But is this skill valued by HR leaders’ colleagues? We asked raters to indicate the importance of each competency we measured, and they rated this skill eleventh of 16 for HR leaders. Perhaps the message here is, “We know you do this well already” or even “This is just table-stakes.” Or, it could be that developing others takes a back seat to other competencies that are highly valued by the other functional leaders.

Building positive relationships. This was another skill where HR scored much more highly than other functions. That makes sense; in most organizations HR is responsible for diversity and inclusion initiatives and for labor relations. HR leaders were rated well on being able to “balance results with a concern for the needs of others.” Another of their more positive items was being trusted and staying in touch with the issues and concerns of others. This competency was also more valued by our raters, who chose it as third in importance.

Role modeling. Some of the most positively rated items for HR leaders focus on their willingness to “walk the talk,” to be role models and to honor commitments and promises. HR leaders are frequently put into the position of ensuring that others in the organization do the right thing and follow established procedures. For those in the HR function, this competency is rated as second in importance. It’s also a skill that seems to be fairly common across all functions.

Having functional knowledge and expertise. Many HR leaders were rated positively on their functional knowledge and expertise. Most employees in organizations are unaware of labor laws, hiring rules, benefits and compensation issues. HR leaders were viewed as knowledgeable and helpful in these areas. This was another common skill across functions, and was rated as ninth in importance for HR leaders.

Weakness of HR Leaders

Focusing internally rather than externally. When comparing HR leaders to all other leaders in our database, they were rated significantly more negatively on their ability to understand the needs and concerns of customers. In many ways the function of HR is focused on internal problems, but the lack of understanding of the external environment often caused others to view some HR leaders as not in touch with the issues facing the organization. HR leaders were also rated more negatively on their ability to represent the organization to key groups.

Lacking strategic perspective. In general, HR leaders were rated significantly less positively on their ability to have a clear perspective between the big picture strategy and the details. Many were viewed as so focused on the “day-to-day” work that they lost perspective on the longer term broader business issues. HR leaders often complain that they “want a seat at the table” to engage more fully with other executives, but without clear strategy and focus they will never have that seat.

Not anticipating and responding quickly to problems. HR leaders were rated significantly more negatively on their ability to anticipate and respond quickly to problems. A number of items noted a general lack of speed and urgency to respond and react quickly.

Resisting stretch goals. On a number of occasions we have watched as senior executives ask for a program or process to be rolled out quickly only to have HR respond, “It takes more time than that—we need to slow the process down.” While at times that is necessary advice, too often it is the first response given by HR without considering what could be done to speed the process and move quickly.

What the Best HR Leaders Do

We also found in our database that some of the best leaders in the world were part of the HR function. The graph below shows the four competencies that most consistently separate the top quartile leaders from the other HR leaders. It is worth noting that what separated the best HR leaders from the rest was their performance on the key competencies that were often weaknesses in HR, in addition to performing extremely well on HR’s traditional strengths.

W150731_ZENGER_COMPETENCYGAPS

 

If more HR leaders would add these four important competencies to their skill sets, we would see many more sitting at the table; and an increasing number seated at the head of the table.

 

Authors’ Note: There’s an interesting gender wrinkle in our data, although we’re not quite sure what to make of it. According to our data, HR has the highest percentage of female leaders (66%). Overall, female leaders were rated at the 45th percentile while male leaders were at the 43rd percentile, but at the very top levels it flipped, and the senior-most men in HR were rated more highly—male senior leaders were rated at the 52nd percentile, and female senior leaders at the 47th. These differences, while small, are statistically significant. When we look at the overall data for male versus female senior managers in the other functions, males are at the 48th percentile and females at the 53rd. Only in HR, Engineering, and Safety do male senior leaders score higher than their female counterparts.

HR seems to have become every manager and employee’s favorite corporate punching bag, vying with IT for the dubious title of most-irritating function. We have seen a parade of articles recently calling for HR to be blown up, split in two, or at the very least, redesigned.

Perhaps this is a good moment to evaluate what it is we really want from our HR leaders—and what we don’t. Over the last five years, Zenger Folkman has collected 360-degree feedback data on 2,187 HR leaders. These leaders are spread across hundreds of different organizations with 68% of those leaders located in the US, 11% in Asia, 8% in Europe, 7% in Latin America, 4% in Canada, and 1% in Africa. Comparing assessments of leaders in the HR function with those of leaders in other functions, our data suggest that the typical HR leader is seen as is six percentile points below average.

W150731_ZENGER_LEADERSHIPEFFECTIVENESS

 

We analyzed the data in two different ways. First, we contrasted the results for the 2,187 HR leaders in our dataset with those of 29,026 leaders in other functions. We were able to identify a few key skills that were common strengths of those in HR and some that appeared fairly frequently as weaknesses. Second, we rank-ordered 49 leadership behaviors for all those in HR from the most negative to the most positive behaviors.

Strengths of HR Leaders

Developing and coaching others. One of the most positive areas for HR leaders in general was that they were truly concerned about developing others. This set them apart from leaders in other functions, who did not score highly on this skill. They were also rated positively on providing coaching, acting as a mentor, and giving feedback in a helpful way.

But is this skill valued by HR leaders’ colleagues? We asked raters to indicate the importance of each competency we measured, and they rated this skill eleventh of 16 for HR leaders. Perhaps the message here is, “We know you do this well already” or even “This is just table-stakes.” Or, it could be that developing others takes a back seat to other competencies that are highly valued by the other functional leaders.

Building positive relationships. This was another skill where HR scored much more highly than other functions. That makes sense; in most organizations HR is responsible for diversity and inclusion initiatives and for labor relations. HR leaders were rated well on being able to “balance results with a concern for the needs of others.” Another of their more positive items was being trusted and staying in touch with the issues and concerns of others. This competency was also more valued by our raters, who chose it as third in importance.

Role modeling. Some of the most positively rated items for HR leaders focus on their willingness to “walk the talk,” to be role models and to honor commitments and promises. HR leaders are frequently put into the position of ensuring that others in the organization do the right thing and follow established procedures. For those in the HR function, this competency is rated as second in importance. It’s also a skill that seems to be fairly common across all functions.

Having functional knowledge and expertise. Many HR leaders were rated positively on their functional knowledge and expertise. Most employees in organizations are unaware of labor laws, hiring rules, benefits and compensation issues. HR leaders were viewed as knowledgeable and helpful in these areas. This was another common skill across functions, and was rated as ninth in importance for HR leaders.

Weakness of HR Leaders

Focusing internally rather than externally. When comparing HR leaders to all other leaders in our database, they were rated significantly more negatively on their ability to understand the needs and concerns of customers. In many ways the function of HR is focused on internal problems, but the lack of understanding of the external environment often caused others to view some HR leaders as not in touch with the issues facing the organization. HR leaders were also rated more negatively on their ability to represent the organization to key groups.

Lacking strategic perspective. In general, HR leaders were rated significantly less positively on their ability to have a clear perspective between the big picture strategy and the details. Many were viewed as so focused on the “day-to-day” work that they lost perspective on the longer term broader business issues. HR leaders often complain that they “want a seat at the table” to engage more fully with other executives, but without clear strategy and focus they will never have that seat.

Not anticipating and responding quickly to problems. HR leaders were rated significantly more negatively on their ability to anticipate and respond quickly to problems. A number of items noted a general lack of speed and urgency to respond and react quickly.

Resisting stretch goals. On a number of occasions we have watched as senior executives ask for a program or process to be rolled out quickly only to have HR respond, “It takes more time than that—we need to slow the process down.” While at times that is necessary advice, too often it is the first response given by HR without considering what could be done to speed the process and move quickly.

What the Best HR Leaders Do

We also found in our database that some of the best leaders in the world were part of the HR function. The graph below shows the four competencies that most consistently separate the top quartile leaders from the other HR leaders. It is worth noting that what separated the best HR leaders from the rest was their performance on the key competencies that were often weaknesses in HR, in addition to performing extremely well on HR’s traditional strengths.

W150731_ZENGER_COMPETENCYGAPS

 

If more HR leaders would add these four important competencies to their skill sets, we would see many more sitting at the table; and an increasing number seated at the head of the table.

 

Authors’ Note: There’s an interesting gender wrinkle in our data, although we’re not quite sure what to make of it. According to our data, HR has the highest percentage of female leaders (66%). Overall, female leaders were rated at the 45th percentile while male leaders were at the 43rd percentile, but at the very top levels it flipped, and the senior-most men in HR were rated more highly—male senior leaders were rated at the 52nd percentile, and female senior leaders at the 47th. These differences, while small, are statistically significant. When we look at the overall data for male versus female senior managers in the other functions, males are at the 48th percentile and females at the 53rd. Only in HR, Engineering, and Safety do male senior leaders score higher than their female counterparts.

 

https://hbr.org/2015/08/what-separates-great-hr-leaders-from-the-rest

7 Tips for Managing Freelancers and Independent Contractors

7 Tips for Managing Freelancers and Independent Contractors

When people work for you, you want to do right by them. But the rules and expectations are different when you’re managing a freelancer who isn’t fully employed by your company. How do you best motivate someone who you don’t have formal authority over? How do you keep them interested and excited about the work when they don’t get perks like bonuses or benefits? Should you give them performance reviews so they know where they stand?

What the Experts Say
Many managers assume that they don’t need to tend to freelancers as much as they do regular employees—and there’s some truth to that, says Dan Pink, author of Free Agent Nation and Drive. “The relationship is often less fraught, less hierarchical, and doesn’t come with the same expectations,” he explains. But that doesn’t mean that you can be completely hands off. You still need to actively and thoughtfully manage them so that you can get their best output and ensure they’ll want to work with you again. “There’s a growing war for talent for people with specialized skills,” says Steve King, a partner at Emergent Research. Freelancers are often just as valuable as full-time staffers, so employers need to treat them accordingly. Here’s how to successfully navigate your relationship with contractors.

Understand what they want
The first question you need to ask is: Why are they interested in doing this job? “It could be money, the chance to develop new skills, or the opportunity to work with great people,” says Pink. “What are you giving that person in exchange for lending his or her talent to your organization?” Because you won’t know freelancers as well as the people on your team, you may need to put this question to them directly.  (“Just asking is a woefully underused technique in life,” says Pink). You might say, “Tell me what you’re hoping for from this assignment.” Then make sure you’re delivering on that.

Set expectations
At the same time, you need to be clear about what you want in return­—whether it’s a well-designed brochure, a new website, or advice every two weeks. It’s good practice to draft a statement that details exactly what you need and when. It’s also important to provide them with context. Because freelancers aren’t around all the time, “they’re not getting the purpose of the exercise through osmosis the way your employees are,” says Pink. “You have to spend extra time talking about what the goal is, how it connects to the big picture, and why it matters.”

Build the relationship
“It’s fair to say you don’t have to invest as much in a freelancer as you do as an employee,” says King. But, “don’t fall into the trap of making it purely transactional,” warns Pink. Get to know them by asking questions about their family, what they’re interested in outside work, and the other projects they’re working on (assuming you aren’t their only client). This is especially important if you want to work with this person again in the future.

Make them feel part of the team
King’s recent (and not yet published) research on freelancers shows that they prefer to work for employers that treat them like part of the team. So try to avoid all the subtle status differentiators that can make contractors feel like second-class citizens—for example, the color of their ID badges or access to the corporate gym—and be exceedingly inclusive instead. Invite them to important meetings, bring them into water-cooler conversations, and add them to the team email list. Compliance departments in some organizations might worry that doing these things makes freelancers look too much like employees for legal and tax purposes, and managers certainly need to be careful not to overstep any employment laws or HR guidelines. But, King notes: “There’s nothing that says they can’t come to a team lunch.”

Don’t micromanage
Your contractors likely got into freelancing because they wanted autonomy. King and Pink agree that it’s important to give them freedom. “To be a successful freelancer, you need to be self-motivated and able to work without someone looking over your shoulder,” says King. Be flexible with their schedules and other commitments. You’re likely not their only client. And give them space to do their work. “You shouldn’t have to manage the work product of a contractor. If you are, find another one,” he says.

Give feedback
There’s no need to do a formal review with freelancers (“I’m not even a big fan of giving employees performance reviews,” admits Pink) but that doesn’t mean you should skimp on the feedback. Telling them what you think of their work will improve their performance and deepen the relationship. “Besides, most freelancers are starving for that kind of input,” says Pink. It can be as simple as spending five minutes at the end of an engagement discussing what went right and what went wrong but King says continuous feedback is even better. “Regularly revisit the statement of work or contract and be clear about whether they’re hitting their targets,” he advises. “If they’re doing a good job for you, thank them, especially in front of others.” And, if they’re underperforming, don’t beat around the bush. “It’s easy to say shape up or ship out partly because you can boot them at any time and you don’t have to feel as badly about it.”

Pay them well
Don’t think just because the contractor is work-for-hire that you should take advantage. They deserve to be treated fairly. “Pay them market rate,” says Pink, “and if you value their work pay them more.” Even if you’d like to test the person out before committed to a big project with her, avoid asking for work on spec; offer to pay for the time the “tryout” takes.  “People talk to one another,” Pink warns, and you don’t want to risk getting a bad reputation. Your company should “aspire to be an employer of choice—for regular and 1099 employees.”

Principles to Remember

Do:

  • Ask what they are looking for from the arrangement
  • Invest time in getting to know them
  • Make them feel like they are part of the team and that their work is valued

Don’t:

  • Neglect to give them feedback on how they’re performing
  • Assume yours is the only project they’re working on—freelancers often have multiple commitments
  • Skimp on paying them what they’re worth—you’ll get a reputation and other contractors may be unwilling to work with you

 

https://hbr.org/2015/08/7-tips-for-managing-freelancers-and-independent-contractors

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