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Executive Book Club: July 2014

When CEOs, senior managers, and HR professionals were asked by the authors of this new book, “What are the top three general business/organizational problems, issues, or concerns that keep you or your executives up at night?” their answers were strikingly similar and can be grouped into the following categories:

* Problems that result from an unclear or unrealistic organizational vision and from a lack of well-developed or well-implemented strategies. 
* Problems that stem from changes in domestic and international competition.
* Problems directly related to dealing with federal and...


The Competency Factor

Who’s the most successful HR professional you know—boss, mentor or other colleague? What qualities do they possess? What makes them stand out?

It’s likely the person you have in mind is business-savvy and well-respected across their organization. They have meaningful relationships with people at every rung of the corporate ladder. They’ve acquired the leadership mantle that so many in the HR profession are seeking. They’re seen as a trusted advisor to the CEO and his or her team of senior executives. In sum, your HR hero has the “it” factor. But what is “it”? And, most important, how do more...


My Not So Hot Off the WordPress #SHRM14 Wrap

2014 SHRM Conference Recap

I spent 4 days in Orlando last week attending the 2014 SHRM Conference.

Here's what I came away with broken down by day, more or less.

Day 1-Voluenteer Leadership Meeting 

I'm a member of the Labor Relations  special expertise panel. For the past couple of years, the volunteer leadership meetings have been the highlight of my conference experience. We get a chance to get up close and personal with SHRM staff and leadership and actually talk to the people who lead our professional association.

This year, the all volunteer leaders briefing started out with an overview...


SHRM Leading Indicators of National Employment® (LINE®): July 2014

In July, hiring rates will reach four-year highs for the month in the manufacturing and service sectors, according to the Society for Human Resource Management’s (SHRM) Leading Indicators of National Employment (LINE) survey for July 2014.

■ Manufacturers, services ramp up hiring in July. Roughly half of manufacturers (53.2 percent) and service-sector companies (49.2 percent) will add jobs in July. 

■ Recruiting difficulty continued in June. Difficulty in recruiting candidates for key jobs rose in June in both sectors compared with a year ago.

■ Pay rates for...


The Moral of Workplace Morale

When it comes to workplace morale, there is no shortage of articles suggesting the ways and means to build and/or enhance cultures that motivate employees to deliver the goods. Beyond their intent to boost morale, the commentaries have one thing in common – the counsel is generic. In other words, the pundits inherently assume that their morale-lifting tactics and strategies apply to any organization, no matter the product or service in which they are engaged. They are correct in this regard. But, there is a catch. One cannot assume a constant success rate because there is more at play.

Allow me to...


Characters Abound at SHRM National 2014

In 1976 we had a big bicentennial celebration at my elementary school complete with costume contest.  The idea was to dress up as an historical character from revolutionary America.  My mother, being the frugal, creative soul that she is, crafted a Ben Franklin costume form a blue bathrobe, and a few other items she found around the house, combined with a .50 cent plastic, half bald with glasses mask - with one of those elastic death strings strapping across the back.

I must have been in 2nd or 3rd grade and was pretty much game for anything.  So I boldly...


#Nextchat RECAP: Encouraging Financial Literacy in the Workplace

On July 2, @weknownext chatted with SHRM's Manager of Compensation and Benefits, Bruce Elliot (@bhelliott04), about "Encouraging Financial Literacy."

In case you missed it, here are all the great tweets from the chat:


Intuition is a Critical Skill for Great HR Pros

Intuition, awareness, or whatever you want to call it–it’s a critical skill if you want to be a successful HR pro. I’m a fan of examples to prove my point, so let’s dive in!

Seeing the needs of new employees

Recently I was helping to onboard a new group of employees. We had won a new contract and needed to pull the new folks into the fold ASAP with no downtime or issues.

The “standard” HR practice would be to gather all of the employees in a single place, give them a speech, hand out paperwork, and wait for it...


Show Me The Money!

I had the pleasure of attending a Mega Session called “Show Me The Money” in Orlando during the National SHRM 2014 conference.  The presenter was LaFern Batie of The Batie Group.

Ms. Batie challenged the participants with what many have been encouraging HR professionals to do for years…understand the finances of the business!

In a nutshell, Ms. Batie told the audience that HR professionals need to get comfortable with money!  That is, they should know where the money comes from and know where it ends up.  They should know what the organization’s plans are for making more money and know how its competitors plan on...


A First Look at the Talent Acquisition Vendor Landscape

As many can attest, the talent acquisition vendor landscape changes on a daily basis. Keeping up with all of the newcomers and established solution providers is a challenge.

Earlier this year, Brandon Hall Group launched our first annual Talent Acquisition Benchmark Survey to get a sense of how this practice area is maturing – in terms of both key practices and technology adoption. While the survey will give me a better understanding of how organizations are using technology to support their talent acquisition efforts, keeping tabs on vendor offerings and activity is an ongoing process.

That’s why I dedicate hours every week to in-depth...