We Know Next Weekly Recap, February 27 - March 2

In case you missed it, here’s what happened on We Know Next.

Mike Aitken, SHRM’s Vice President of Government Affairs, shares his thoughts on key issues surrounding the 2012 political landscape as they relate to HR and business professionals.

Meanwhile, U.S. military veterans are being hired, yet not targeted in recruitment, according to a recent military poll conducted by SHRM.

We saw text messages resurface in employment law litigation, reminding employees to be aware of the need for appropriate professional relationships in their communications at work.

And despite the importance of the old-fashioned resume,...


How to Choose an Executive Coach

Much has been made about the ROI of business coaching with most studies returning a 5-to-8 times return on investment, as well as numerous intangible benefits. Additionally, the stocks of companies that spend aggressively on employee development and training outperform those that do not, further evidence for the dollars and cents value of coaching and development.

However, it is worth noting that “coach” is not a protected term the same way that “psychologist”, “doctor” and others are. Inasmuch as anyone who wants to call him or herself a coach can, it’s wise to have a systematic way...


Are Great CEOs Great Leaders?

In my mind, the best CEOs are usually the ones who are in a race to the future – they’re obsessed with defining the future because they can’t stomach the thought of reacting to a future created by their competitors. During his era, Steve Jobs was miles ahead of every other forward thinking CEO in that race. Somehow he was able to see the unseen, and marshal Apple’s resources to deliver the innovative products that fulfilled his view of what lied ahead. In the process, Apple became the most valuable corporation on the face of the earth. That established...


A New Kind of Stress

The recession is taking its toll not only on businesses and unemployed Americans—it’s also affecting the employees still reporting to work, day in and day out. In fact, the stresses have grown so great that workers are starting crack under the pressure.

Employees are reporting thoughts of suicide, violence against co-workers and mental breakdowns at the highest rates seen in three years, according to Harris, Rothenberg International (HRI), a provider of employee assistance program (EAP) services.

As companies try to do more with fewer workers, employees are stretching themselves thin to meet the demands at the workplace,...


The Age of Digital - Creating a Better Work-Life Balance and Higher Productivity

We are entering a new digital era, an era in which people are connecting with content and with brands through multiple screens – through their PCs, TVs, smartphones, and tablets. 2011 marked an exciting year for the digital media industry and signaled an even more momentous year ahead with the rise of smartphones and tablets that have altered consumers’ digital media consumption – changing the way people access content, where they consume it and the frequency of their consumption.

Having a digital strategy requires insights into not only our current environment, but also into...



I begin this cautionary blog with a story.  After the story, you’ll understand why I began the blog as I have.

I wrote an article on holiday parties for Business Week. I discussed the risks, including too much alcohol consumption and sexual harassment.  Of course, the two often are connected.

Well, the article included a little sarcasm.  Perhaps a little more than a little.  So it was tweeted pretty heavily.

As you know, when people tweet, they can add their own message.  As I learned later, one tweeter included the words party, alcohol and sexual.  They...


Executive Book Club: February 2012

The Executive Guide to High-Impact Talent Management is a must read for business leaders who prioritize the need to continue to drive future business performance to enable their companies’ upward mobility and secured sustainability.

Recent studies show that in the next few years companies could have only about half the leaders and skilled workers they need – and that these talent shortages will be particularly acute in critical sectors of employment like engineering, health care, energy, government, manufacturing, and aerospace and defense. As a business leader,...


BYOD or Bust - Managing Devices for a Mobile Workforce

Via smart phones, mobile sites, business applications and more, the consumerization of IT continues to impact the way employees use technology at work. Many organizations are shifting away from company-issued devices and adopting BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) policies, which allow employees to use the mobile technology they’re most familiar with. There's a lot of buzz around the benefits of BYOD in an increasingly mobile workforce, but little discussion around the policies needed to establish rules and guidelines for usage. 

BYOD policies, of course, have benefits and drawbacks. While the freedom to choose the device and platform you’re...


Why Mission Statements Suck

I’m not arguing against a clear definition of where a company is going and what sets it apart. My beef is with the way the particular corporation’s guiding principle is expressed; it is generally verbose, convoluted and incapable of resonating with employees or inspiring them. I’m not the first person to say this. Yet, companies large and small from start-ups to blue chippers continue to err in crafting compelling, single-minded mantras.

Exxon Mobil Corporation'smission is an example of a poor statement. "We are committed to being the world’s...


Global Leaders Aren't Made in the Classroom

Last month, we chatted about what global leaders need to know—Intellectual Capital, Psychological Capital, and Social Capital--and where to start with their development—by leveraging development opportunities and tools already in your organization.  Once you’ve identified existing resources, what do you do with them? 

Our research at Najafi Global Mindset Institute shows that leaders with the highest Global Mindset abilities are not made in the classroom.  They develop through a series of layered learning and experiences over time.  Now, that’s not to say classroom or instructor-led training isn’t valuable.  In fact, a large part of Global Mindset is based...