Presentation on theme: "UTS Careers Presents: The Aussie Workplace. Workshop aims To raise awareness of Australian workplace culture and practices To develop strategies to improve."— Presentation transcript:
UTS Careers Presents: The Aussie Workplace
Workshop aims To raise awareness of Australian workplace culture and practices To develop strategies to improve effectiveness in job search and the workplace Advise is general in nature. Industries, work places and roles vary
Typically Australian From your experience so far in Australia or what you’ve heard about Australians: What to you is typically Australian? What about a ‘typical Australian person’?
Australia today Over 80% of the population lives within around 50km of the coast! – hence Australian culture tends to place high importance on the beach Non-indigenous Australians make up 98% of the population & over 25% of those were born elsewhere Today, people from more than 150 countries contribute to cultural change in Australia
Australian workplace cultures Every Australian workplace has a unique mix of Australian national culture, subcultures and workplace-specific norms and values – often referred to as its organisational culture. Each organisation will have unique communication styles, hierarchies and other features. Learning the culture of one Australian workplace will not make you an expert in them all!
Australian workplace culture today Researchers who have studied the Australian workplace culture in the last 10 years have concluded that Australian workplace culture is a unique and different culture from its counterparts in N America, Asia and Europe. In particular, they looked at the notion of “quality”. They said: “quality is perceived by Australians, primarily in terms of the relationships they have with those around them and the organisation with which they are involved.” Certain concepts, like Quality, have a totally different meaning in other countries. Source: “Simply the best workplaces in Australia”, Working paper 88 by Dr. D Hull and V Read, December 2003.
Spotting perceived cultural differences Quality is an obsession with standards … in Germany Quality is the pursuit of perfection … in Japan Quality is viewed as luxury … in France Quality means ‘It works’ … in the USA Quality implies Quality of Relationship first … in Australia
Key differences between Australian and other workplaces 1.Organisational hierarchy and management styles o Equality o Managers are collaborative rather than directive 2.Communication styles o Informal. Use of first names/ nicknames o Joking and banter – sign of friendliness o Shortening words 3.Expectations of you as an employee
One of the mates ….. Australian Approach Ref: Lewis, D (1999), Cross-Cultural Communication, A Visual Approach, UK: Transcreen Publications
Australian communication styles Informal speech is typical Directness can be seen as being more efficient and effective Managers often use collaborative rather than directive communication styles with subordinates. Use of please/thank you. Humour between colleagues doesn’t mean there isn’t respect Sarcasm is a common form of Australian humour!
Australian communication Tone of voice – statements often end with an upturn in tone, as if the statement was a question! Need to listen to the words used to determine if the statement was in fact a question or not. Jokes – if an Australian teases you, it is often a sign of affection! Do not take it personally. Australians expect you to laugh along with them and at yourself, i.e. they don’t take themselves too seriously! Eye contact – it is expected to have eye contact during communication It is generally important to maintain eye contact when listening to someone else talk to you. (Ref: Interviews.) Shaking hands – it is normal for both females and males as a form of greeting
Australian slang How ya goin’/doin’? What d’ya reckon? = What do you think? Taking a “sickie” / a ‘mental health day’ / a ‘doona day’ = Slang for calling in sick. Having a “smoko” = taking a cigarette or cigarette break during work hours. A fair go = to give someone an equal chance Ta = thank you Barbie = BBQ Cuppa = Cup of tea
Employers’ expectations… you will: Demonstrate good communication skills Have good problem-solving, planning and organisational skills Be able to work independently or in diverse teams Show enthusiasm and be self motivated Take initiative and be assertive when appropriate Be punctual and responsible for tasks Ask good questions Give your own ideas (in an appropriate manner)
The Employability skills framework Source: Graduate Careers Australia Loyalty Commitment Honesty & integrity Enthusiasm Reliability Personal presentation Common sense Positive self-esteem A sense of humour A balanced attitude to work and home life An ability to deal with pressure Motivation & initiative Adaptability Personal attributes that contribute to overall employability & which employers appreciate:
Most assessed skills/competencies The Top 10 most assessed competencies, as reported by graduate employers in the 2014 AAGE survey: 1.Cultural fit 2.Teamwork 3.Oral communication 4.Interpersonal skills 5.Motivational fit 6.Analytical skills 7.Problem solving skills 8.Achieves results 9.Integrity and trust 10.Written communication skills
Age and culture Workplaces today: Baby boomers + Gen X Gen Y Different generations Different cultures Different education Different perspectives Different upbringings Different social norms and values
Work vs. Leisure A fairly accurate generalisation could be that, in Australia: Work is important, but leisure makes it all worthwhile! Australians certainly do work hard, although many Australians will see work as a means to acquire the financial resources they need to do the things they enjoy the most. (Casual) Fridays in the workplace Long lunches; dress more casually; the weekend is almost here! Talking Sport! Can help you ‘fit in’/ be accepted in some workplaces.
What makes an “excellent workplace”?
Australian legislation relevant to the workplace Federal (Commonwealth) law State or Territory legislation Local government regulation A ‘must’ / shall / compulsory Code of practice / conduct Workplace guidelines Policies and procedures A ‘should’ / ought to / supposed to
Australian legislation – Health & Safety NSW employers must have a workers compensation policy that covers all workers Employers have a duty of care to ensure workers are not exposed to any risks to their health and safety during the course of carrying out their duties. Employees must: take reasonable care for their own health and safety take reasonable care for the health and safety of others comply with any reasonable instruction by the employer cooperate with any reasonable policies and procedures of the employer TIP: When you join an organisation, you should familiarise yourself with the WHS policy, including emergency evacuation procedures.
Australian legislation – Anti- discrimination & Equal Opportunity Discrimination, Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) & affirmative action Australia has strong anti-discrimination legislation. Federal Laws: Australian Human Rights Commission Act 1986 Age Discrimination Act 2004 (Cth) Disability Discrimination Act 1992 Racial Discrimination Act 1975 Sex Discrimination Act 1984 State (NSW) Law: New South Wales Anti-Discrimination Act 1977 (NSW)
Australian legislation – Anti- discrimination & Equal Opportunity Under the Fair Work Act 2009, discrimination is disadvantaging someone in the workplace because of their:
Australian legislation – workplace rights The basics of the Fair Work System There are 10 National Employment Standards that protect employees’ minimum conditions.National Employment Standards There are 122 modern awards that cover most businesses in Australia. These set the minimum wages and conditions of employment for employees and employers who are covered by them.modern awards There are minimum wages, which usually depend on the type of work you’re doing, your age, qualifications, whether you’re doing an apprenticeship or traineeship and the industry you work in.minimum wages Every employee has to get a Fair Work Information Statement when they start a new job.Fair Work Information Statement
Australian legislation – conditions and salary TAX If you work in Australia, your employer will deduct income tax from the salary or wages they pay you and pass it on to the Australian Tax Office (ATO). Before you start work, you will need to get a Tax File Number (TFN). Apply online through the ATO. At the end of each income year (30 June), most people need to lodge an income tax return. Your employer should provide you with a payment summary which has most of the info required on it. Deadline is 31 October each year. If you are working temporarily in Australia, you may pay tax at different rates depending on your residency status. You will need to work out whether you are classified as a resident for tax purposes using the residency test on the Australian Tax Office (ATO) website:
Australian legislation – conditions and salary SUPERANNUATION (“Super”) Money set aside over your lifetime to provide for your retirement. Employers make compulsory superannuation contributions (minimum 9.25%) on behalf of eligible employees. Employees can generally choose the superannuation fund into which their contributions are made. Employers will pay super directly into a super fund. Generally paid to employees who are less than 70 years old; are paid a salary or wages of A$450 or more in a calendar month & who work full-time, part-time or on a casual basis. See:
Australian legislation – conditions and salary SALARY The national minimum wage acts is a safety net for employees in the national workplace relations system to provide minimum rates of pay for employees not covered by awards or agreements. Correct as at 1 July 2014: Federal minimum wage is $ per week ($16.87 per hour). Reviewed by the Fair Work Commission annually. Into effect from 1 st pay period on or after 1 July each year. Basic rate of pay depends on age, job classification and industrial instruments (e.g. an Award or Workplace Agreement). Casual rates of pay can vary (for example $15 – 26 per hour). VISAS You must understand your work rights in Australia. See the Dept of Immigration website BANK ACCOUNT When filling in paperwork for a new job, you will be required to provide your bank BSB and account number.
Australian legislation – conditions and salary FURTHER INFO International students living in NSW: Australian Government: studentshttp://australia.gov.au/people/students/international- students NSW Police have Facebook and Weibo pages for international students: https://www.facebook.com/nswinternationalstudents
Steps to assist with cultural adaptation Observation o Observe what goes on in social situations: what do people who are a similar age, gender, role etc to you do? o Observe how Australians react to your behaviour. o Try to understand why people behave in certain ways by learning about cultural norms, values and beliefs - (the lightbulb moment!). Self-awareness o Be mindful of how you interact with others. o Personal space Experimentation o Try new behaviours until you find the one that seems most accepted or ‘normal’ in any given context. o Things that are successful with one person may not work well with others.
A self-audit 1. Which generic/transferable skills do you think are most important for your industry? (e.g. communication skills, teamwork, problem-solving, analytical skills, time management, leadership etc…) 2. What is your current level of ability in each of those areas? (e.g. no ability, beginner, intermediate, advanced) 3. How convincing is the evidence you can give in support of your abilities? (i.e. what specific examples can you give to demonstrate your skills?) 4. List specific development activities / your Action Plan list of activities which will enhance your employability… (e.g. join some societies, network, see HELPS for communication lessons, update your resume, seek out opportunities for leadership roles etc…)
Final Tips Adaptation begins with self-awareness. Be aware of your own attitudes and values. Observe others in your surrounds – you will pick up on what the cultural ‘norms’ are by doing this. Be open to others and get to know people: talk to them, learn about them and let them learn about you. Give yourself time and be patient. Transitioning from one culture to another takes time. As an Australian would say, give yourself a “fair go”! Pat yourself on the back for your courage in going out there and trying something new Useful booklet - Employability skills and workplace culture in Australia: uide_Skills_work_place_culture-guide_for_migrants.pdf
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