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Lessons for a Happy Life with an HR Spin

 
We learn life lessons throughout our lives. Sometimes the lessons are from our own mistakes, from being inquisitive, and other times we learn from others.  Often, the lessons are unexpected.  I recently watched a video of Sam Bern, an amazing 17 year old young man who suffered from Progeria, an extremely rare disease which causes rapid aging and various other side effects.
 
Sam died of the disease on Friday, January 10, but not without leaving behind some wonderful lessons for having a happy life.
 
I’d like to take a stab at giving life to his lessons,...
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Windows XP™ is Gasping for Breath – HIPAA Compliance Becomes an Issue

Microsoft: Bring out your dead…. Bring out your dead!

Windows 8: Here’s one!

Windows XP: I’m not dead yet!

Windows 8: Well, can you hang around for a couple of minutes? He won't be long.

Windows XP: I feel fine, I feel happy, I feel happy!

(Inspired by Monty Python and the Holy Grail)

Selecting the right Windows operating system for your PCs is more confusing than ever, and HIPAA makes this decision even more important.

Windows XP has had a remarkable shelf life, but Microsoft has set April 8, 2014 as the last day they will support XP. Here...

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NEW SHRM CERTIFICATION

SHRM is committed to ensuring that the certification our members achieve is recognized as best in class and distinguishes them in and prepares them for today’s marketplace. Business is changing and employers are demanding that HR professionals adapt to that change.

It’s important that SHRM stay ahead of this trend for the profession and its members.

The Society is developing a new HR Certification program based on the competencies required to be an effective HR professional. This certification is the culmination of over three years of research, and based on the SHRM HR Competency Model,...

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Crafting a High-Performance Culture

One of the best things about being an entrepreneur is the opportunity to craft your company culture. It’s also one of the hardest, because - let’s face it - you can’t dictate a culture. Ultimately, your company culture is going to be what people make it. But, as a leader, you ought to steer in the right direction. SmartRecruiters has been 3 years in the making and just passed 60 people (most of them engineers) so it felt right to start putting words behind what had so far...

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Yes, Employers, Words Really Do Matter

It's easy to underestimate the power of words. Many supervisors fail to appreciate the importance of the words used in a performance review or evaluation, corrective action, termination letter, or other employment-related document. But it can go beyond the obvious instances.

In an age-discrimination case, a supervisor had attended a presentation by a contractor who was trying to bid work with the employer. The supervisor wrote in his notes that the type of work would be perfect for "young engineers." What the supervisor meant was that the work being bid was well suited for entry-level engineers, who could gain valuable...

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A Holistic Measure for Holistic Talent Acquisition

Last week, I mentioned that I’ve begun work on a new framework for high-performance talent acquisition. In many ways, it’s the culmination of all of the work I’ve done in my role here at Brandon Hall Group – and beyond, as I’m drawing on years of experience in operations. The reason being, a framework captures all of the myriad pieces that comprise a mature and effective process and incorporates them into single, holistic model that drives desired outcomes.

I use the word holistic deliberately, as our research shows that high-performance people processes – from talent acquisition to performance management to...

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Talent without Leadership doesn’t count for Diddly-Squat

Every company wants TALENT. But not every company is bestowed with the LEADERSHIP that unleashes talent’s power. Talent without leadership is as good as spitting into a gale-force wind.  

I learned that lesson growing up in a working-class district of Toronto in the 1950s. Back then, every public primary school fed into one large junior high school after the sixth grade. For me, there was a special feature about junior high beyond a burgeoning interest in the opposite sex and the temptations of juvenile delinquency. The attraction was this: One of the junior high’s nine grade...
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Respecting Others’ Religious Beliefs in the Workplace

For the uninitiated, yesterday was Star Wars Day (May the Fourth be with you), so I, like so many other Star Wars fans, spent part of my day watching Star Wars, specifically Episode IV: "A New Hope."  I even managed to convert my 2 year-old daughter into a brand-new Star Wars fan.  

During this particular episode, one of the Imperial officers, Admiral Motti, mocks Darth Vader’s belief in the force.  In fact, he goes as far to call Vader’s beliefs “sorcerer’s ways,” and a “sad devotion to that ancient religion.”  Of course, Vader achieves the upper hand...

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What HR Students Need to Know

Last week I sat down at the University of Alabama in Huntsville and spoke with some of the students about what they need to know as they prepare to leave school and enter the real world.

I talked about some of the career aspects: negotiating salary, establishing credibility, networking, etc. I also talked about some of the things I learned very quickly after I left school (namely, the degree isn’t as helpful as most schools would lead you to assume). Many of the topics I discussed are a part of the ...

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