Managers need cultural competency training to better transition
foreign-trained HR professionals

TORONTO, Jan. 27 /CNW/ - Canadian organizations need to train middle managers on conducting culturally sensitive performance and coaching conversations with internationally educated HR professionals (HR IEPs), according to results from the Human Resources Professionals Association's (HRPA) new study Accelerating the Integration of Internationally Educated Human Resources Professionals.

"In Canadian businesses, managers provide their direct reports with performance reviews and developmental opportunities. The structure, vocabulary and environment in which these discussions occur are significantly different than similar discussions in other cultures," said study author Claude Balthazard, HRPA's director of HR excellence.

For example, in North American management culture, a manager will often use the "hamburger" approach to performance conversations-cushioning negative feedback between two positive comments. Some study respondents, from management cultures where negative feedback is typically delivered more bluntly, reported they were confused when managers mixed positive and negative feedback in the same conversation.

"If a manager understands the nuances of communicating with a report from a different culture, that will go a long way in helping transition the employee and reduce voluntary turnover. This is a significant finding for all professional bodies to consider in the development of their IEP integration strategies," says Balthazard.

The study, which examined the experiences of 89 HR IEPs in the Ontario human resources labour market and 18 employers from large Canadian organizations, identified several other areas of improvement to accelerate the integration of HR IEPs into the Ontario HR profession. They include:

    -  A Certified Human Resources Professional (CHRP) Alternative Routes
       program that fast-tracks verification of HR-IEP education and
       experience so they can write their CHRP certification exam within six
       months of arrival in Ontario.

    -  A discounted HRPA HR-IEP membership category that provides
       professional development and networking opportunities.

    -  An online information resource directing HR-IEPs to appropriate
       bridging, mentorship and professional networking opportunities.

    -  The development of HR-IEP-specific professional development that
       provide HR IEPs with training in Ontario employment law. HRPA is in
       the process of partnering with an IEP agency to design and deliver
       this program in 2010.

HRPA has also received funding from the Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration to deliver three HR-IEP/Employer and IEP agency conferences across Ontario. The conferences, to take place during June, October and November 2010, will help effective transition for HR IEPs in Ontario organizations.

For a full copy of Accelerating the Integration of Internationally Educated Human Resources Professionals, please go to

The Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA) is Canada's HR thought leader with more than 18,000 members in 28 chapters in Ontario.

SOURCE Human Resources Professionals Association of Ontario

For further information: For further information: Duff McCutcheon, Communications Specialist,, (416) 923-2324 x324

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Human Resources Professionals Association of Ontario

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