Posted by & filed under Blog, Opinion.

What comes to mind when you think about sexism in the work place?

Chances are that you are going to think about women not being treated equally compared to the men that they work alongside. However, in some industries, the men are actually just as discriminated against as women. Administration being a prime example of this.

Administration is often seen as ‘women’s work’. If a man is found in one of these roles, then they may be seen as working beneath their skill level. But why is this? Why is admin seen as women’s work?

A recent survey by Careersmart found that 77% of our administrative work force are women and a measly 23% are men, however the average salary of a man working in this type of role is around £4000 higher than the average female is being paid. https://careersmart.org.uk/occupations/other-administrative-occupations

Why is admin seen as women’s work?

  • Women are more organised and able to multi-task

One thing that many people think about women, is that they are the best at multi-tasking and tackling many jobs at once. Men, on the other hand are not quite as recognised for their ability to focus on many things at once, which is why they are not often seen as the ideal admin worker.

  • Women are more social

An important part of any admin role, but particularly those that involve being customer facing, is being able to be approachable and social. Women are always seen as being more social than men. They find it easier to chat, to get to know other people and to be personable and friendly.

  • Women are not seen as keen on technological roles

Whilst many office jobs are seen as “women’s work” when it comes to IT and dealing with other aspects of technology, men are definitely seen as being more prevalent. It is thought that women might not be as interested in roles that deal with technology, instead focusing on softer skills.

Of course, whilst these are thought to be the reasons why there are fewer men working in admin, these are not actually true and are just stereotypes. Male administrators are just as talented, capable and able as female administrators, and can prove to be a valuable part of any team. Over my last 4 years at Cherry Pick People some of my most successful candidates in administrative roles have been male.

Ask yourself, would you consider hiring a male administrator?

In any business, balance is KEY and both men and women are capable of doing any roles that they want to tackle. The ability to do a job is not down to your gender, is more about your skills, your experience, your knowledge and whether or not you are the right person for the job, regardless of what that job is…

Posted by & filed under Blog, Opinion.

What can an employee do to protect themselves? Here are some tips to assist you…

The Explosive Manager

Keep emotions to a minimum and stick to work issues. If your rage-aholic manager shouts at you, don’t shout back. Instead, maintain your professionalism and calmly deal with the situation.

When dealing with an angry or volatile manager, never confront her in an emotionally charged state. Remove yourself from the situation or remain silent. A good breathing technique to reduce your stress levels can be found in this blog How to Manage Stress at Work.

Then in a day or two, book a discussion with your manager on how her angry comments make you feel and affect your productivity. Documenting the incidents, in detail, and report abuse through the proper channels at work.

If your complaint falls on deaf ears, it’s time to look for another job. Staying in an environment with an explosive manager will only wear on your self-esteem and physical health. No job is worth that.

The Absent Manager

These managers are absent either physically or mentally. Unfortunately, in their absence, they often forget about their employees. You might not get the recognition you deserve, be forgotten when it’s time for a review, or just feel as if you are invisible.

With an absentee manager, your communication efforts are vital. You need to be assertive in your requests. Your manager may even be unaware of how her lack of direction impacts you; tell her. Set up periodic meetings, or updates to report on what you’ve accomplished. You must be proactive with this type of manager.

The Moody Manager

On Monday, he may be cheery and jovial. On Tuesday, he may come in quiet and sullen. By Friday, he’s barking orders at everyone he sees.

Resist the temptation to be defensive. Instead of saying, “Why are you treating me this way?” say, “You seem to be having a bad day”. This puts the negative emotion back on him. His moodiness is really about him, not you. Book in a meeting to discuss how his moods affect your work.

Whatever you do, do not suffer in silence: doing so will impact your physical and mental health. Working for someone like this creates a great deal of stress, consider transferring to another department if all your efforts to rectify this situation fails.

The Cowardly Manager

Usually, cowardly managers create a fairly dysfunctional office setting with their lack of leadership. The best way is to work with a cowardly manager, not against them. Ask open-ended questions to get input and write down what your manager says. Report on your accomplishment, based on their suggestions, and say “thanks”, this will help to boost their confidence as a manager. Bring up the success you experienced, in an office meeting, again singing the praises of your manager for their suggestions. This will in turn show you are on their side.

The Oversexed Manager

Sexual advances in the office not only makes for an uncomfortable situation, but it’s also illegal. Treating a subordinate in this way is abusing their position of power – it’s unacceptable. They think you won’t report them for fear of losing your job.

Document incidents from the beginning. Write down the date, time, where it happened and what exactly was said. Report what you’ve documented to HR and your managers supervisor. Always keep what you’ve documented at home, not in your desk at work. If colleagues have experienced the same treatment, and that’s usually the case, go in together. Know your rights, ask for an immediate transfer, or position where your manager won’t be above you any longer.

Managers are Human

We all come to work carrying our own baggage, it’s no different for managers. The key is knowing how to deal with them to protect yourself and your job.

If you find you are dealing with a situation which is affecting your mental or physical health, or general well-being, do what you can to network into another position in a different department, or right out that company’s door. No job is worth jeopardising your health and well-being.

Should things not improve at work, why not get in touch with one of our friendly consultants who will be only too pleased to assist you in finding you the right opportunity.

Posted by & filed under Blog, Industry News, Opinion.

Equality is something that every person on the planet should be striving for. In some areas of life and particularly employment, huge leaps and bounds have already been made in order for women to be seen as equals to their male counterparts. However, there are still some areas where so much more work needs to be done.

This is true for construction.

The construction industry has always been a predominantly male world, mainly because many of the roles require intense physical labour and of course strength. So, does this mean that construction will always be limited in welcoming women?

We don’t think so, in fact, we think that the construction industry could actually benefit from having a female’s touch.

The current standings

So, how does the current climate look for the construction industry? Well, across the industry as a whole, taking the roles that are more admin and design based into account, women make up around 11% of the entire workforce. When you actually look at the building sites themselves, it drops to just 1%.

Compared to the rest of Europe, the UK has the lowest proportion of female engineers, with only 14% of students entering engineering and technology first degree courses being women.

So, why is this?

Of course, the perception is that it is “men’s work” and its mainly manual and requires strength. However, who is to say that women are not able to handle these roles, and of course, the administration, technical, design, engineering and project led vacancies can be just as suitable for women as they are men.

Many women who are currently working in the industry, or have in the past, state that sexism is a real problem. Women, when they do decide to enter the industry are treated worse than their male counterparts and often face comments and low level, seen as playful abuse from their fellow workers.

What can be done?

We know that something needs to happen when it comes to women working in construction, and it seems that it is not just down to leading women to change it. The main thing that needs to be looked at is the perception of the construction industry and women’s place in it. This is particularly true in the new generation of workers, who will be making their decision on where they want to work in the future. So, this is down to the government, schools/colleges, leading employers and industry bodies and recruitment firms to accelerate the pace of change.

Construction should be portrayed as an industry for all, where women and men are treated equally, where there is a range of jobs and skills required, this will encourage more women to enter it as a career. The current working generation need to become positive role models for women looking to enter construction. Having these role models will show other girls and women that it is possible to enter what is perceived as “a man’s world” and start to put construction on the radar as a job of choice.
There is still work to be done to ensure that men and women are equal. However, we are hopeful that the future of construction looks like it might be a touch more feminine than it is at the moment!

If you are a student interested in working in construction, or you are an employer looking to create a more diverse and inclusive environment, please get in touch with me for a chat!

https://unitetheunion.org/what-we-do/unite-in-your-sector/unite-construction-allied-trades-and-technicians/

Posted by & filed under Blog, Industry News, Opinion.

A reoccurring conversation I have had over the past 12 to 18 months is the candidate shortage within the Property market – especially in Sales. Why is it harder to find good people I am asked? What factors are affecting this?

There could be many external factors which could be influencing the market…

Firstly, unemployment is at an all-time low of 4.4% (REC) – this indicates that there are therefore fewer people to fill roles. As permanent placements remain stagnant – temporary and contract recruitment is increasing from 33% in March 2015 to 57% in March 2018 (REC).

Is it the uncertainty of Brexit? Inflation to live in London? Wages catching up with cost? Or are people’s ideologies changing?

I have worked within Property since 2012 working my way up to Head of Department in the Sales, Lettings & New Homes Division – during my time within the Sector – now is the time I have seen most unease.

Secondly, the Property Recruitment Market reflects the current Property market…

Property Market update

Several factors are blamed for poor Property Sales growth including “subdued economic activity” (the Mortgage Lender) – also household outgoings are higher which is affecting the demand. According to Cost of Living Survey (which ranks 209 cities globally for costliness) London has leapt from 29th to 19th in 2018.

Demand has dropped off, Jeremy Leaf states the number of £1m houses on Sales throughout London are at a record high – buyers are just walking away from the “ridiculous” prices. Rightmove shows in June 2018 there were nearly 20,000 houses and flats on for Sale – a record. Rightmove also disclosed there were 16.4% more London homes on the market compared with June 2017 with the number of Property Sales in the Capital are down by 5% in the past 12 months (The Independent).

The average house price in the Capital has increased by 500% in the past 20 years from £98,000 to £485,000 in January 2018 – compared to the £277,000 UK average (Property Week).

The Berkeley Group which builds luxury homes in London and the South East warned in a report that profits were likely to fall in 2018 by a third due the constant weight of Brexit uncertainty on the London housing market (The Berkeley Group).

On a positive note, Homes & Property state with the significant increases of the number of houses and flats on Sale in the Capital it gives buyers A LOT more options in comparison to previous years and if prices remain steady and wages increase this will see properties become more affordable.

When I first started at Cherry Pick People Recruitment in 2012 – candidates did not question the low basics and high commission however as the years have gone by and the Property and Property Recruitment Markets have changed rapidly – so has people’s ideologies.

The emphasis of the “work hard, play hard” mentality and working 70 hours a week have decreased in our candidates’ desires.

Perhaps the factors I discussed above have influenced – the current rate of unemployment at all time low in the UK, the inflation of household costs, mortgages and house prices add to the stresses of the 2018 worker – has the uncertainty of the Property market made the Property employee uncertain?

So, with this change, people seem to be far more focused on well-being, health, social time and less stress. We have seen that candidates our asking most about free weekends, benefits, less hours and higher basics.

I’m sure many of you who have been in the industry will feel you don’t want people with these types of drivers – “as they don’t make good sales people” but perhaps as society, how we buy, the markets change we need to change with then???

Posted by & filed under Opinion.

Bermondsey is back on the map with its glorious river views, cobbled streets, old railway arches and fab transport links.

It has a very different feel to lots of other parts of South London, quaint, artistic and somewhat industrial but then busy enough to feel very much part of Zone 1. My first experience of Bermondsey was as a fresh faced ex-pat from Leeds, visiting a hairdresser on Jamaica Road, I couldn’t quite get over how different Bermondsey was from Clapham where I then lived.

Historically the Docklands suffered extreme damage in World War 2 and then many of the desecrated wharfs and warehouses remained empty until the early 1980s, and fast forward to 2018 they are now home to some of the most opulent residential properties in London.

Bermondsey is a host, not just to affluent warehouse conversions, but also pre-war, post-war, ex -local authority properties, period properties and now many new riverside developments. There is something to suit every person’s property palette!

The transport links are great too, with the Jubilee line, South Bermondsey Station, London Bridge on the door step and a stone’s throw from Canada Water, Rotherhithe and Surrey Quays.

The Docklands is home to some exquisite restaurants such as Le Point De La Tour, José, Goodman and Scoff & Banter to name a few. There are also parks such as Southwark Park and Bermondsey Spa Gardens and great markets such as Borough Market, Maltby Street Market and Bermondsey Antiques Market.

For me the pièce de résistance is that Bermondsey is very close to The Globe Tavern in Borough Market and anyone who knows me, knows how much I love Bridget Jones and some of my favourite scenes were filmed outside the pub and her fictional flat actually exists and this is the one-bedroom flat above The Globe Tavern.

The Telegraph published an article in September 2016 about whether Bridget could still afford her 1-bedroom flat:

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/property/buy/could-bridget-jones-still-afford-that-flat-above-borough-market/

Estimating the value now, I would gage it as being between £750,000 and £770,000, they anticipated that in 2001 is was worth approximately £190,000 which is around a 300% increase in value, which shows the transformation of the Docklands, which bares similarities to the “gentrification” of Brixton, which was something that I mentioned in a previous blog:

https://www.cherrypickpeople.com/2017/12/11/the-gentrification-of-brixton/

So this brings me back to the original question

“Why would I want to work in Bermondsey?”

Simple answer, I want to sell Bridget Jones flat!

In all seriousness, why wouldn’t you want to work in Bermondsey?! it has such great amenities and transport links, house prices and rents have risen significantly and on top of that as an estate agent, I think it’s great to see such a mixture of well-established boutique independent agencies working next to and alongside the big corporate agencies! The Docklands and Bermondsey, don’t follow the usual structure, they are diverse and culturally explorative. Viva The Docklands!

I would love to speak to property professionals in and around The Docklands as I currently have a number of opportunities for both senior sales and lettings negotiators who are looking for a fresh challenge with either boutique independent agents or larger corporate agencies. The packages are starting at £18,000 going up to £25,000 with healthy commission structures, the time is now to kick start your career!

I’d be interested to hear your thoughts on Bermondsey, do you live there? Work there? Socialise there? What makes it special to you?

 

 

Posted by & filed under Opinion.

Overlooked:

• To fail to notice or consider
• To ignore deliberately or indulgently; disregard

Underappreciated

• Fail to value sufficiently highly
• To not hold in sufficiently high esteem.

These are the words that I am hearing over and over again this month from candidates who seemingly work for exceptional companies.
Many of them have been with their companies for a substantial amount of time, however are unhappy by the way in which they are being treated.
I went to a seminar a few weeks ago where they stated that employment is at its highest since records began and many job portals are boasting that they are at their highest level of job postings.
I have also noticed that many of these experienced candidates who are feeling underappreciated and over looked, start the process of looking for a job and then go quiet. I think for many of them, this is a confidence issue. They know they are not happy, they then get overwhelmed by the number of jobs available to them and then think:

• “What if things are not better?”
• “How will I fit into this company’s culture?”
• “Will I bank?”
• “What happens if I don’t bank money?”

Across the board, we are gaining new clients who have come to us as they are struggling to successfully recruit themselves, they have offered candidate’s positions and then these candidates have failed to start the positions instead favouring the counter offer, or have just decided to say nothing to their current employer and stay where they are.

The counter offer and making the right choice when moving company, is actually something that both my director Lema and I have written about in previous blogs, as it is something that is very current in today’s market:

https://www.cherrypickpeople.com/2016/08/23/6-reasons-accepting-counter-offer-rarely-good-idea/

https://www.cherrypickpeople.com/2016/09/21/changing-jobs-right-reasons/

As recruiters, this has meant that we are just as busy, if not busier than we were and with there being more jobs but less committed candidates, it means a lot more search and selection and effective headhunting.

To me the current situation raises three main questions:

• Can employers do more to engage with and retain existing employees?
• Do experienced candidates need to have more confidence in the value of their skillset and what they have to offer a company?
• Once a company have recruited a member of staff what can they do to make the on boarding process smoother to ensure that the member of staff joins and stays with that company?”

These are all things that we as a company specialise in, so rather than just securing our clients the right employees, we can help with the on boarding process and look at how to retain existing employees.
With candidates, we aim to build the kind of relationships with them which allows them to understand their worth, meaning that they make better and more informed decisions, that in the long term, they will be happy with.

What are your thoughts? Are you struggling with employee engagement and retention? Or are you looking to make a move but are lacking the confidence in either yourself or the market?
If so it would be great to have a chat about this, feel free to get in touch with me, you can send me a message on here or drop me an email at Lisa.Clarke@cherrypickpeople.com or call 0203 5877 051.