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Sunday reading for June 1, 2014:

1. Peter McKelvie over at The Best Practice Manager has a great piece up talking about how relatively lower valuations of care-giving social roles serve to undermine gender equality. Specifically, he highlights that it is not enough for society to embrace a woman’s choice to enter the workforce or work part time – as long as care-giving work continues to be viewed as less value added than work in the professional sphere true gender equality is not possible. To this point, one way that we can make progress in this space is by enabling men more flexibility in their career choices. Society largely expects men to conform to traditional roles as breadwinners, in the process tying masculinity to career and thereby undermining the value of caregiver roles. This one got me thinking about my own biases (I would never adopt a stay-at-home role because, I suppose, I value career success more highly), and also caused me to think about the role that HR and talent management policies play in determining society’s broader gender roles. Check the full piece out here.

2. Recognition guru Derek Irvine recently wrote a piece for the Compensation Cafe where he highlighted that 83% of workers are looking for a new job. Buried at the heart of why people seem to be seeking new opportunities is poor management, with 15% of respondents aspiring to leave their current roles citing no possibility of advancement, 13% saying they feel under-appreciated, and 5% saying that they dislike their boss personally. That a third of engagement/potential retention issues are tied to management related issues speaks to a huge need that organizations have around building capabilities in this arena. This piece is worth reading for the insights it provides on management alone, but it also has a lot of great thoughts around pay (which topped the list of reasons employees are looking to leave their organizations) as well. Check it out here.

3. Julie Appleby, senior reporter at Kaiser Health News has a post up on TLNT outlining a benefit change that impacts up to 10 percent of large employers and may eventually impact even more. It’s called reference pricing, and here’s how it works (from the article):

Insurers or employers survey what providers are charging for a specific treatment, and then set a cap — or “reference price” – to mark the maximum amount they will pay for that service as a way to encourage consumers to choose more reasonably priced providers or treatments.

As more employers adopt reference pricing strategies, it could leave consumers on the hook for thousands of dollars in healthcare costs if they elect to have out of network treatments. This makes consumer/employee education paramount. Organizations adopting reference pricing strategies will need to effectively communicate these changes to employees so that they can make informed choices. To learn more about reference pricing (and how it might affect you) read the full piece here.

As always, please share your thoughts in the comments below.