Much press has been given to the Equality Act which comes into force today. Basically it is an amalgamation of a number of previous acts and legislation. There are, however, changes and new items for employers to take into account. Here are three questions and answers to why you should check you are in good shape.
1. Do you provide, or wish to provide services to the public sector? The public sector is asked to ensure that providers have an Equality Policy.
2. Do you wish to avoid the costs of a tribunal? Then you are less likely to run into trouble if you have, and follow, an Equality Policy.
3, Do you want to increase your chances of winning a tribunal? Then you will not only need an Equality Policy but will also be required to show that you have regular Equality Impact Assessments.
It need not be difficult or expensive to have a policy and/or undertake an RIC (Rapid Impact Check). Why not have a quick healthcheck? Send me an email for more information at firstname.lastname@example.org
We had a fantastic launch of the Highflyingdivas Forum on Monday. 16 people booked and everyone has voted to come to future events. A summary of the feedback are on the website at www.highflyingdivas.com. The event was held at Essex Cares in Colchester so that the meeting room charges went to this worthwhile charity. www.essexcares.co.uk. I have posted one or two of the challenges on our Forum group on LinkedIn. Jenny Lynn gave an inspiring talk about managing time and career and there were also overviews of what Enterprising Women and Businesslink offer.
On Thursday I attended an IoD breakfast at Stockbrook Manor to learn about LEPs (Local Enterprises) which the Goverment are initiating to take the place of the Regional Development Authorities. Very interesting economic facts including the average train times from South Essex (35mph) as opposed to other parts of the country. The three areas of focus for LEPs will be Planning, Infrastructure and Transport. Early days and business engagement is on the Agenda as these Enterprises develop.
No other networking events this week but some 1-2-1 coffees with people I have met at events.
Reading: As it is the beginning of the month, I attach a summary of all of the recommended reading to date. I list the items below but a couple more descriptive sentences are included in Communications.
- “Writers’ & Artists” Yearbook 2010, available from most bookshops.
- Prosperity Without Growth by Tim Jackson
- “The New Leaders, Transforming the art of leadership into the science of results” by Daniel Goleman.
- The 4-Hour Work Week by Tim Ferriss.
- The Mindgym Wake Your Mind Up by Octavius Black and Sebastian Bailey, published by Sphere 2007.
- “The Beermat Entrepreneur” by Mike Southon and Chris West.
- When I Loved Myself Enough by Kim McMillen.
- Our Iceberg is Melting by John Kotter.
- Paul Gunter and Andrew Shorten have written a short and very useful book with a very long title “How to fill your small business with non-stop customers,money, success and growth … leave every single one of your competitors scratching their heads down to the bone…and create great, great personal wealth quickly”.
- Who Moved My Cheese? An Amazing Way to Deal with Change in Your Work and in Your Life,written by Spencer Johnson
- Dr Marcia Reynolds’ second book, “Wander Women, How High-Achieving Women Find Contentment and Direction”.
- The Feeling Good Handbook by David D Burns. M.D.
- Leading Change by John P. Kotter
I live in Kelvedon, that well-known by-pass route that people generally visit when the A12 is blocked. We can always tell when the A12 is blocked as the High Street becomes almost impassible as lorries, vans and frustrated car-drivers weave their way past the two cars parked on the left, followed by the two cars parked on the right of the High Street. There is usually a long queue behind the elderly driver who patiently waits for the opposite line of traffic to pass, even for those speeding up behind the last trailing vehicle to ensure that they can dash through. If we are not pinned against the kerb whilst the traffic onslaught hurtles past, we are subjected to abject terror in the face of determined motorists thundering down the middle of the road to aggressively claim it, regardless of any legal rights of way. Our local Council has posted a watch to ensure that cyclists don’t use the footpath. This gives any cyclist a choice of which way to dice with death. Ttreacherous negotiation around the vans parked on the street, or the delights of being mashed by weaving cars leaping from side to side down the High Street. Woe betide any mother with a pram, any pedestrian with a mobility scooter or anyone not wearing head-to-toe waterproof clothing to avoid the muddy showers thrown up by passing vehicles when it rains. If you do manage to get down the High Street on foot and then turn the corner into Station Road – be prepared. The commuters take no prisoners as they alight from the train and pound determindly towards their respective homes. Four abreast it is similar to facing the Romans on their invading march to Colchester and you can be transported back up the High Street by the sheer power and energy of the opposing force. Elderly Kelvedon inhabitants are known to carry an up-to-date train timetable on their person to ensure they avoid an encounter. So if Granny or little Tommy are late for tea – they probably have a good reason. Why not come visit us in lovely Kelvedon? – who needs a fun-fair!