Survey: Executives Say Co-worker Competitiveness Has Increased in Last Decade



    TORONTO, Aug. 20 /CNW/ - While Olympic athletes go for the gold in
Beijing, workers at home may be experiencing their own competition, suggests a
recent survey. More than one-third (38 per cent) of senior executives
interviewed said they believe employees are more competitive with each other
today than they were 10 years ago.
    The study was conducted by an independent research firm and developed by
OfficeTeam, a leading staffing service specializing in the placement of highly
skilled administrative professionals. The survey is based on telephone
interviews with 100 senior executives from the largest companies in Canada.
    Executives were asked, "In your opinion, are employees more or less
competitive with their coworkers than they were 10 years ago?" Their
responses:

    
           Significantly more competitive..................   9%
           Somewhat more competitive.......................  29%
           No change.......................................  22%
           Somewhat less competitive.......................  28%
           Significantly less competitive..................   8%
           Don't know......................................   4%
                                                            ----
                                                            100%
    

    "Regardless of economic conditions, people are concerned about job
security and proving their worth to employers," said Dave Willmer, executive
director of OfficeTeam. "This pressure to perform may result in rivalries
between employees."
    Willmer added, "A bit of healthy competition among staff can increase
motivation and productivity, but, just as in sports, the overall results of
the team are what count. Too much intramural competition creates tension and
stands in the way of collaboration."
    OfficeTeam has identified five common "workplace competitors," along with
strategies for discouraging them from taking competition too far:

    
    -   The Sprinter - This employee races to the finish on projects,
        sometimes overlooking the details. Commend him on his long-term view
        and enthusiasm, but encourage him to avoid cutting corners in the
        process.

    -   The Weightlifter - This employee views her achievements in terms of
        quantity rather than quality, often taking on more projects than she
        can reasonably accomplish satisfactorily and on time. Offer to
        redistribute some of her work among others and encourage her to focus
        on doing a first-rate job rather than attempting to do too much at
        once.

    -   The Gymnast - This person aims for perfection and tends to want to
        complete projects on her own. While her bends and flips may be
        impressive, you may have to diplomatically counsel her to channel her
        talents more toward team goals rather than spending her time on solo
        routines.

    -   The Pole Vaulter - No challenge is too great for this employee, who
        lobbies to take on the highest-profile projects. While this can-do
        spirit is helpful, it's important to not let this worker monopolize
        all of the most challenging assignments.

    -   The Saboteur - This athlete is present in every sport. He's the
        runner who trips others near the finish line, the soccer player who
        always gets the yellow card or the basketball player who is ejected
        for unsportsmanlike conduct. His struggle to get ahead at the expense
        of others ends up damaging his team's chances. Explain to him the
        value of playing by the rules and focusing his energy on
        collaborating with colleagues rather than personal glory.


    Survey Methodology
    ------------------
    The survey was conducted by an independent research firm and developed by
OfficeTeam, a leading staffing service specializing in the placement of highly
skilled administrative professionals. The survey is based on telephone
interviews with 100 randomly selected senior executives at Canada's
1,000 largest companies.

    About OfficeTeam
    ----------------
    OfficeTeam provides businesses with the highly skilled administrative
talent they need to maximize productivity, achieve cost efficiency and support
full-time staff. The staffing firm has more than 300 locations worldwide and
offers online job search services at www.officeteam.com.
    

    EDITOR'S NOTE: To schedule an interview for local commentary in Toronto,
Winnipeg, Calgary, Edmonton or Vancouver, please contact Jim Dimovski at
416.350.2010, ext. 62024.





For further information:

For further information: Jim Dimovski, (416) 350-2010,
jim.dimovski@rhi.com


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