Category Archives: management

Social Media Tips for Human Resources

Social media and human resources are an odd duo. Obviously there are many negative reasons on the legal and standards front, but there are many positives as well.

HR professionals need to source, find, and retain great talent for their organizations. They also need to do about 100 other things throughout their days and weeks. Which is why social media can be a valuable addition to HR for recruiting, staffing and employer branding.

I recently wrote a post for Talent Acquisition.net titled “Social Media Basics for Human Resources.” Employer branding is a key way to bring talented folks to your company – inbound recruiting, if you will.

Employer branding helps communicate the company, culture and values. It supports the organization’s corporate voice and helps tell the story of the company, giving it a human touch.

Companies need to show why someone would want to work there and that should reflect in the web site, social media sites and throughout all of its touchpoints.

Great Marketing Ideas Can Come From Anywhere.

I learned the interesting story of the creation of Disney’s Fast Pass while speaking with a customer service rep. for AT&T, of all things. He was an intern at Disney at the time. An engaging fellow, he proceeded to tell me that the Fast Pass came about because of a fire code.

The Indiana Jones ride in CA had a queue about a mile long. One day there was a fire drill and it took about 25 minutes to get the people out. That was not acceptable and the firefighters told Disney that they needed to shorten response times. When they asked “how?” a firefighter said “how about tickets that save people’s place in line?” And the rest is history.

Disney thought about monetizing Fast Pass but later decided the system was acceptable the way it was. A firefighter. An AT&T customer service rep. Creativity can be anywhere!

By the way, Disney gave credit to the firefighter. And the rep? He wrote the Backlot Tour script and is still credited on the script. That is the sign of a great company that recognizes creativity.

IT Project Management Roundtable Teleconference on 5/5/11

Focus is a diverse community of 5,000 business experts for various industries. I discovered it while networking online through Twitter. Focus offers Q&As, research and events to connect the world by sharing industry-specific knowledge. It is quite a compelling site and a great place to go for seeking business advice.

My client will be moderating this panel for the technology community. This opportunity is a result of utilizing Twitter for networking. If you seek to establish yourself as an industry expert, Focus paired with LinkedIn Answers will give you a great starting point.

Toll-free Dial-In Number: (866) 951-1151
International Dial-In Number: (201) 590-2255
Conference # : 
4999006

Please join us for a roundtable teleconference on Thursday, May 5, 2011 at 11:00 am PT/ 2:00 pm ET as we address project management issues related to complex business transformation initiatives, including ERP, consolidation and outsourcing. Our panel will discuss specific topics such as:

  • Choosing and managing vendor partners
  • Preparing the organization for impending change
  • Ensuring top management engagement throughout the project

Rob Prinzo, Founder and CEO of The Prinzo Group, will moderate a panel discussion featuring the top project management and IT experts in the industry:

Attendance for this event is free.

Follow the conversation:
On Focus:

  • Follow the Project Management or ERP topic pages
  • Submit your own question and use “Project Management” as a topic tag

On Twitter:

  • #FocusRT

Remember to Say Thank You.

Always remember to say thank you. After Christmas, I had my daughter create a picture and I scanned it and made a thank you card with a picture of the girls as well as the crayon drawing. The family loved it and commented about it.

A few years ago I was working for an online ecommerce company and was struggling with getting some graphics created. A colleague stepped in to help me out and he created the graphic. I sent him a Hallmark ecard as a thank you. He later told me that no one had ever thanked him like that and he was so happy. I had thought about not sending one – thinking it might seem hokey to him, but after hearing that I was glad that I did.

In business, you can simply verbally thank an employee for a job well done, send an ecard to a vendor or partner or run a campaign and thank your customers. It is a simple thing that you can do for a cheap price and believe it or not, makes a world of difference!

Employers who don’t tell the whole truth when interviewing

After a few weeks of meetings and interviews, my sister was wooed away from her current job back to her older company. She is now discovering that topics they discussed in the interview were not covered as honestly as they should have. Now that she is there and seeing just what a mess the company is, especially after a merger, what can she do? What are her rights? I am curious to know how often this occurs in the US and why companies can get away with lies and half-truths in interviews.

This has also happened repeatedly at my office. People are told one thing, and they arrive and discover that in fact that was not true.

There oughta be a law.

Why saying "Thank you" is more than just good manners

Why saying “Thank you” is more than just good manners

A 10-year study of 200,000 managers and employees suggests that praising people for a job well done may lead to bigger profits, says Fortune’s Anne Fisher.

By Anne Fisher, Fortune senior writer
April 12 2007: 6:46 AM EDT

NEW YORK (Fortune) — Dear Annie: I changed jobs last year, going from a small company (where I had worked since the start-up phase, over a decade ago) to an organization about 10 times bigger. I’ve made the adjustment pretty well, except for one thing. My old employer was very gung-ho about recognizing people for their achievements. If someone met a tough deadline or went above and beyond for a client, that person got a public pat on the back and maybe even a “prize” like a free dinner for two at a nice local restaurant.

My new company is completely different. No one ever says “thanks” for anything or shows any appreciation for extra effort, and as a result people don’t do anything more than the minimum required to get the job (sort of) done. I think this hurts the business, but I can’t convince my boss. Any thoughts? – Trying to Help

Dear Trying: I’d be willing to bet we’ve all worked in organizations like yours, at one time or another. Many years ago, Fortune had a top editor who made a point of never praising anyone for anything. Asked why not, he replied, “People who are good know they’re good. They don’t need to hear it.” Well, if any proof is needed that that approach to managing people is wrongheaded, here’s where to find it: “The Carrot Principle” (Free Press, $21.00), a fascinating book by Adrian Gostick and Chester Elton, both consultants at Salt Lake City-based consulting firm O.C. Tanner (www.octanner.com).

The book’s subtitle says a mouthful – “How the Best Managers Use Recognition to Engage Their People, Retain Talent, and Accelerate Performance” – but the basic idea is simple: People will work harder and more enthusiastically for an appreciative boss, and companies that praise topnotch performance are more profitable than those that don’t. In a study of 200,000 managers and employees over a 10-year period, Gostick and Elton found that, in companies where few people agreed with the statement “My organization recognizes excellence”, annual return on equity averaged a paltry 2.4 percent. By contrast, companies with a culture that emphasized thanking people for excellent performance racked up returns more than three times as high, at an average of 8.7 percent. (For the complete study, go to www.carrots.com, under Research.)

Of course, anybody who has taken Statistics 101 will tell you that correlation doesn’t always imply causation, and companies that praise their workers are probably doing lots of other things right, too. Even so, at a time when employers are competing fiercely for top talent, the authors note that 79 percent of employees in a recent poll who had quit their jobs cited lack of appreciation as the main reason. It seems saying “thank you” is even more important in retaining people than paying them more money – and a pat on the back is free.

How can you persuade your boss to start recognizing his team’s achievements? Adrian Gostick says that about one-third of managers in the Fortune 100 companies he works with are, like my old editor, dead set against the idea of praising people. “They don’t believe in it. They’re always the ones sitting in the back of the room at our seminars with their arms folded, and that negativity often spreads to others,” he says. “To overcome their resistance, we start by asking why they don’t want to. Often they say they don’t have time. But another big reason is, lots of managers want to be seen as ‘tough’, and recognizing people looks ‘soft’ to them. Another obstacle is that they just don’t know how.”

That doesn’t mean your boss can’t change. Gostick says that, in a former career as vice president of a bank, “I had to be told to recognize people. My employees urged me to do it.” He adds, “We’ve found that, if you encourage a reluctant boss to start with just a few small things, he or she is often pleasantly surprised by the response and will want to do more.”
“The Carrot Principle” is full of creative ideas for thanking employees, and you might take a look at those, and pass a few suggestions along to your boss. But some of them – like buying lunch for all employees who have to work on a Saturday and inviting their families to join them; or springing for an extra plane ticket so a spouse can accompany an employee on a business trip – may be too much for the budget. No problem.

Says co-author Chester Elton, “You don’t need to spend a lot of money to make an employee feel valued. We find that a handwritten thank-you note, which costs next to nothing and takes just a couple of minutes, is something people really love to get. It’s far more effective than an e-mail, especially if it’s timely and specific. It should say, not just ‘Way to go!’, but ‘You did a terrific job on that XYZ project’. We’ve seen people who are so pleased to get these that they keep them for years.”

But let’s say you show your boss the bottom-line results of Gostick and Elton’s research and make a few gentle suggestions for how to start recognizing people, and he doesn’t budge. You know the grassroots-political maxim, “Be the change you’d like to see in the world”? If you were to make a habit of thanking colleagues and praising the people around you for a job well done – beginning with (why not?) your boss – who knows? You just might start something big.
http://money.cnn.com/2007/04/11/news/economy/annie_praise.fortune/index.htm?section=magazines_fortune

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Office affairs in a small business

I work for a small company and it seems there is an office affair going on by a supervisor and a staff member, who are both married. Everyone in the office is aware of the situation and rumors are flying. It’s awkward.

How do people deal with this type of work environment? It’s not healthy or professional. I don’t respect my supervisor. If management is supposed to address personnel problems like this and he IS the management, where does that leave the staff? Just turn the other cheek, I guess.

Workplace romance: love affairs and lawsuits
http://www.gruntledemployees.com/gruntled_employees/2006/11/workplace_roman.html

Dealing With Workplace Affairs And Other Office Dilemmas
http://www.careerjournal.com/columnists/workfamily/20050916-workfamily.html

‘The Office’ As a Training Tool

I started watching “The Office” a few months ago on maternity leave. Previously, it was too painful to watch as it reminded me of bad managers and unhealthy workplaces that I have experienced as a worker bee. Now I have been able to get past the pain and laugh. And laugh and laugh.

Here are some interesting insights into “The Office” and how it pertains to real life management and training in the workplace. Worker bees unite! Managers, please read!

NPR Business
‘The Office’ as Management Training Tool
Morning Edition, October 25, 2006 · The dysfunctional workplace portrayed in the TV show The Office rings true to many viewers. It also provides a roadmap of how not to manage a workplace.
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=6380073

Must See TV: Lessons from NBC’s “The Office”
December 01, 2006
What can “The Office” teach you about managing a sales force? Plenty.
By Rebecca Aronauer
http://www.salesandmarketing.com/msg/content_display/publications/e3i778b0e5af917c8c649a51ebf1bd4fe4b?imw=Y

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