Groundbreaking ideas and research for engaged leaders
Rotman Insights Hub | University of Toronto - Rotman School of Management Groundbreaking ideas and research for engaged leaders
Rotman Insights Hub | University of Toronto - Rotman School of Management

Do you care about your employees? Prove it

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Alan Saks

You know there’s valuable research and thought leadership on management issues that would help you and your organization move forward. But you don’t have time for a lot of in-depth reading — and where would you even start?

The answer is the new podcast, Rotman Executive Summary — your inside track to the latest insights and innovative ideas from the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management. Each episode features a faculty member affiliated with Rotman sharing their expertise on a topic that organizational leaders tell us they want to know more about.

In the first episode, you’ll hear from professor Alan Saks, a human resources expert who delves into the dos and don’ts of improving employee engagement. As workplaces recalibrate after the pandemic, Saks explores why it’s important for leaders to show they genuinely care about employees by adopting a different approach to HR management.

“I think the tables are turning somewhat, in that organizations now realize that they have to pay more attention to their employees if they want to be able to attract and retain them,” Saks says. “What that means is they have to do more to try to get them engaged, and they may have to do things that they have not done in the past.”

With more than three decades of research in HR management, Saks breaks down ways to define and measure employee engagement in the workplace. He offers tangible tips for leaders and HR teams across industries and suggests compromise may be necessary to keep staff content amid organizational changes, including the current return to in-office work.

In October, professor Andreas Park takes listeners through the latest rise and fall of cryptocurrency, and why business leaders shouldn’t write off the space just yet.

Professor Pankaj Aggarwal joins the third episode in November to speak about the pros and cons of humanizing brands, and how celebrity-led brands, social media and AI are changing the rules for interacting with customers.

Rounding out the year, professor Rachel Ruttan shares best practices for giving advice and constructive feedback that’s likely to be well-received. She explores the latest research in advice-giving and navigating complex emotions at work, blending insights from psychology into her management research.

New episodes will be released monthly on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts and Soundcloud. Desktop listeners can also tune in on Simplecast.

Would you rather read than listen? Check out the full transcript of the first episode here.

Alan Saks is a professor of organizational behavior and HR management in the department of management at University of Toronto-Scarborough, with a cross-appointment to the organizational behaviour area at Rotman.