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Difficult Conversations

Every HR professional and manager has had to have a tough talk with an employee about his or her performance. Sometimes it is in the context of an annual appraisal.  Other times, it may be a final warning prior to termination.  But regardless of when the discussion happens, careful planning is necessary.  Otherwise, the wrong things may be said or done, and difficult conversations can quickly evolve into difficult lawsuits.  Here are 11 tips to help take some of the pain—and risk—out of those closed-door meetings....

From Melbourne Australia to Washington, D.C. for #SHRM16

If you cannot feel it radiating through your screen, let me tell you, I’m pretty excited!  In a matter of weeks, I’ll be arriving to Washington, D.C. with possibly the best cohort of people you could ever want to conference with. No sarcasm: HR people are the best – we make a difference in people’s lives, we get to work in every industry, and we get to contribute to easily the most interesting part of work – the people! We share, we get energized by improving things, we challenge...


Want to Attract the Class of 2016? Try Offering Student Loan Assistance


The class of 2016 is feeling pretty positive about their job prospects - 86% percent of college graduates are at least somewhat optimistic they will find full-time work after graduating, and 92% are hopeful they will land their desired job, according to a new survey by Indeed.

Something new graduates are probably not feeling so positive about is the student loan debt they will be saddled with upon receiving their degrees. In a national survey of 2,500 graduating seniors, Indeed found that 86% of graduates have started paying,...


The 2016 #FLSA Overtime Changes: What #HR Needs to Know

I’m not going to write a big long explanation for this post. If you’re in the HR world, you know that the much-awaited final ruling came from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) about changes to the overtime rule in the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA.) Last summer, I spoke with Jonathan Segal, a partner with the law firm Duane Morris LLP regarding the proposed overtime rule changes to the minimum weekly salary requirement and the primary duty test. When I read that the final rules were released, I asked Jonathan if he would give us the scoop. And he very graciously...


When Talented Managers Need Their Talent Managed


I am sorry to say it appears the Peter Principle is alive and well.  You know what I mean.  How many conversations do you have in an average week that revolve around a manager’s poor people, management or leadership skills?  This is not to say they don’t have talent.  In fact, more often than not it was their talent that led them to the place they are today.  And how did they get there?  You’ve got it; we put ‘em there!  Isn’t that at the heart of the Peter Principle?  We promote individuals to...


A Prescription for a Healthier Workplace

Our world is inundated with health information. Yet even individuals who have all the right information and possess the best intentions can be held back by one major factor: their jobs.

While most people are limited in their ability to moderate their wellness during work hours, the best employers know that they play a huge role in employee wellness. And employee wellness plays a huge role in business success because healthier workers perform better and reduce their company’s costs.

The Healthy Workplace:...


Dave Ryan Interviews #SHRM16 Speakers Karen Vujtech and Lisa Carlton


Is it the right thing to do for you Compensation and Rewards HR types?

As the title asks, “is it the right thing for you to do? Then the question begs what is IT? This is the question…Should you be jumping on the Incentive Bandwagon?  This is the title to a presentation that is being done by a couple of Midwest women, who have spent a lot of their lives working in the compensation and rewards area of Human Resources.

Karen Vujtech from the Chicagoland area and Lisa Carlton from Topeka,...


A Year Later. . . What Can "Mad Men" Teach Us About Life and Career



With all of the focus on the new overtime rules, a major event could be forgotten. One year ago last night we said good bye to Mad Men.  For some, it was just a television show.  Allow them their blissful naivety.  A lot has happened to our friends in the last year with career and life lessons for all of us. So let’s leave the real world for just a moment:

Joan.  Because Joan would not sleep with a knuckle dragger named Ferg, Joan was forced out of McCann Erickson.  That...


Mental Health in the Workplace – Caring for Others and Caring for Self


Three years ago, my good friend took his own life.

I remember that morning like it was yesterday. The feelings of disbelief, sadness, anger, and loss. I also had a feeling of helplessness. As an HR professional, I am very good at helping others to cope with loss, stress and pain, but I had never been in a position to help myself. And for the first time in my career, I did what I recommend countless times per week. I called my company's EAP.

May is Mental Health Month. I have written about this for the past few years...


Q&A with #SHRM16 Speaker Steve Browne (@sbrownehr)

Steve Browne is the Executive Director of Human Resources for LaRosa's, Inc. — a regional Pizzeria restaurant chain in Southwest Ohio, Northern Kentucky and Southwest Indiana with 18 locations and over 1,200 Team Members. Steve has been a human resources professional for 25+ years and has worked in the Manufacturing, Consumer Products, and Professional Services industries. Additionally, Steve is a former State Director for Ohio SHRM and serves as a member of the SHRM Board of Directors. Steve facilitates a monthly HR Roundtable...