This "ad" showed up on my Facebook page today:
This "ad" showed up on my Facebook page today:
Several event came together over the past couple of day. First, I spent the last several days at the Profiles International World Conference in Forth Worth Texas--where a parade of cows and horses marched down the street on Saturday morning--but that is a separate post. The key topic of the conference was developing leaders and managers through a regular 360 review process. Profiles has also penned a great new book on "Leadership Charisma" that helps identify what it is that makes leaders leaders.
Even more exciting, the updated Checkpoint360 tool will now measure the Leadership Charisma index!
It seems that there is quite a bit of pent up frustration amongst workers out there who have been heads down for the last two years--just taking it because they are happy to have jobs. As we start to see the haze clearing heads are lifting and opportunities are starting to become commonplace. While we're not in the go-go times from years past it is certainly better than it was. Massachusetts unemployment is just south of 9%, better than a lot of the country but not where it used to be--that will take time.
Companies are going to have to start meding relationships with overworked and underresourced employees and now it the right time to do it. Investing, even small dollars, can make a huge difference in morale and in performance. Take the 360 that I spoke about earlier--an inexpensive way to develop your leaders by demonstrating interest and using actual information to close gaps. Almost all leaders welcome the opportunity and if they don't--are they really leaders?
Every year, I look forward to the New Year. It just seems like such a natural time to pause and think about the year behind us and the year that we look forward to. 2010 won't go down in my book as my most favorite year but it was one of remarkable accomplishment. I was able to put 140 managers through a core skills program that consisted of four fundamental management classes. I got a new software system installed that will change the way work is done at my hospital. I gave some tough feedback to a manager who was failing--and her performance improved dramatically. I got to promote an employee out of the administrative ranks and into the professional ones. We got a new A/C system in our condo. My brother turned 40 and I was able to go to the surprise party. My partner had a great year at work. We went to Paris, Provincetown, and Phoenix (hmmm, only towns that start with "P").
So, 2011. Every year I spend some time just thinking about what the next year holds. I'm always optimistic so I just assume that the year will bring good things. If you haven't already, get out a piece of paper or open up a Word document. Now, just write down what your intentions are for the new year. Where would you like to be in December 2011 looking back over the year and looking forward to 2012. Did you actually move the ball forward?
My 2011 intentions are simple and they are safely written down and in a spot where I can access them and read them regularly. I encourage you to do the same.
Welcome 2011. May your intentions come true.
Today Facebook served up a Home Depot HR recruitment advertisement to me. I can't help but think about the implications associated with this new frontier. The fact that it know what targeted ad to send to me about possible employment is huge. When I think about the possibilities of web 2.0 coming true I am amazed. Personalized content--from what movies I might enjoy, to products associated with my Alma Mater--the web truly allows for a customized and branded experience.
So, if you organization thinks Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter is a waste of time, think again.
Let's chat about Elizabeth Edwards. My memories of her seem to be attached to the news media. She really came into the political spectrum when her husband John ran with Senator Kerry for the Presidency. She was a class act then and continued to be a class act.
So, what does being a "class act" really mean? I think quite a lot. I think being a class act includes being honest with yourself and with your family, it is living every single day to its fullest. It also includes helping others and speaking your voice when others cannot. Elizabeth Edwards was truly a Class Act.
Her brave fight with Cancer, her support of her husband under circumstances that most people wouldn't have tolerated, to the point where she had had enough. All depict a class act
So, when you are complaining about work, "The Holiday's", the dirty dishes or the laundry that you need to do, think about "A Class Act" and proceed appropriatly.
Elizabeth, thank you for your service, wisdom, and bravery.
Today is December 7th (well, now 8th by a few minutes)...Today my thoughts turn to my Step Dad, Archie Kelley.
My Step Dad, Archie P. Kelley served his country well in the US Navy. Since today is December 7th, the day the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor, I thought I'd write about him. Archie was stationed on a submarine at Pearl Harbor on that faithful day. He was in the engine room, the officer in charge, and responsible for keeping things running.
When the bombing commenced, his submarine ended up at the bottom of the harbor. Archie was faced with figuring out what compartments to flood to keep the sub from tipping over. That meant closing doors with people on the other side. When Archie describes it, tears still come to his eyes--and he is 92 years old.
Luckily, there was an uncharted exhaust pipe that lead from from the engine room to the surface. Archie and his men climbed up that pipe to the surface. And, I'm sure, what awaited them on the surface wasn't much better.
So this evening, I called my Step Dad--As I was listening to the phone ring I thought "Do I say happy Pearl Harbor Day?"...but, the minute he picked up I realized all I had to say was "Thinking about you on this terrible day...Thank You."
A very close friend of mine recently lost her mother. I felt privileged to have known her and always loved the annual 4th of July party that her Mom and Dad hosted at their home overlooking the beach in Rockport, Massachusetts. As is often the case, the time leading up to a loved ones death is filled with Herculean efforts to visit the patient in the hospital--and, often, it means taking some time off of work.
This was the case with my friend. Her Mom was in a nursing facility over an hour away. It required fighting traffic, fighting deadlines at work, and ongoing fatigue. My friend handled it like the pro that she is.
I was impressed that her boss took the day off to attend the funeral. It is generally what a good boss does. They take time off to pay their respects to the deceased--but, more importantly, they are there to support their employee.
This manager, however, also called his employee on the phone the very next day to ask her if she was going to be finishing up a project that was due. Really? What planet does this guy live on? A direct report just buried her mother--and you were there--and saw the tears, the emotion, and the love. And then you call and ask about a project?
Managers...this one if for you. Don't call. Give your employee time--time to figure out what their new normal is.
You only get one chance to do this right.
Today's Guest Post comes from Stanley Janas at Halogen Software. He makes a compelling argument about linking training and development to performance metrics. It is a great read. In the spirit of full disclosure, I am now Director of Learning + Development at Tufts Medical Center here in Boston, Massachusetts. Halogen has been solicited for a quote for their performance and learning management software solutions.
This analysis allows Learning and Development teams to clearly identify performance gaps and assess learning needs for the entire organization. If your organization conducts assessments for succession planning purposes, you should look at the employee performance data from this process. Access Development Plans for the Entire Organization In addition to providing employee performance ratings, your organization's performance appraisals likely invite managers to assign development plans to their employees.
Collecting and analyzing this data from your performance appraisals is another way to get real data on individual employee training needs, whether their development plans are associated with competencies that need development, with stretch objectives that require an employee to acquire new skills or with career or professional development plans. Again, you may also be able to get similar information from any assessments conducted as part of your succession planning process. Provide Training That Supports High-Level Organizational Goals
You should also look to your organization's high level goals, mission, vision and values. While managers and employees use this information to align their personal goals, Learning and Development teams can use it to create curricula and learning paths that support the achievement of these goals. Validate the Effectiveness of Training by Measuring Improvements in Performance The same data that helps Learning and Development teams identify skill gaps can help them validate the effectiveness of learning interventions. Learning and Development teams should measure changes or improvements in employee performance ratings over time to validate the effectiveness of training.
This is the most accurate way to truly measure the value of training in terms of sustained performance improvements.
Stanley Janas is Director of HR at Halogen Software. He can be reached at email@example.com
I have to share this with you. As you remember (or not), I asked you about different HRIS in the past. Well you'll be happy to know that I have handled the purchase the very first HRIS for my company ALL BY MYSELF.
From the research; viewing demos; seeking IT input (regarding software and hardware requirements); scheduling demos for my managers; endless back and forth communication with vendors; selecting final three vendors; checking references; to writing my recommendations (including pros & cons) for each one.
And yesterday, we signed the contract.
But I wouldn't have experienced such thrill if it wasn't for you. So you see, I haven't been sleeping in your class even though I didn't ace it, I have learned a whole lot! You deserve the Teacher of the Year trophy in my book...
By Guest Blogger: The Business Woman's Finishing School and Social Club
Working The Network
The trade publications refer to “the hidden job market.” These are the jobs that are not advertised, and in spite of their invisibility, someone estimates that 80% of available jobs are not advertised. It is not entirely clear how that is calculated. What matters to you, the job seeker, is that these jobs are as abundant now as they have ever been. And they are available to you if you understand where to look.
Why is there a hidden job market?
is still expensive, online or off, and in a 10% (or higher in some
industries) unemployment situation, posting an ad opens a floodgate of
applications an employer can’t manage because he laid off his recruiting
staff in the last go-round. Better to put the word out quietly, in a
controlled settling, than to post in so public a forum as a website,
or trade journal.
Referrals are more reliable – for everyone involved. Even the Navy knows that a buddy system improves retention . The referring employee is endorsing both the company and the candidate, the candidate can get the real skinny on life at the Company, and the Hiring Manager gets a name he can put right to the top of the stack.
Jobs are often created for a specific need, or to suit a specific internal candidate, where insider knowledge is so crucial you wouldn’t want anyone but the person you already have in mind. How often have you said in your own work situation, “I wish we had an Anne to put on this problem,” or “Martin would be at his best if we could find a way to let him analyze data all day long”?
So how does one find this job market if it is invisible?
You’ve got to work your network. Because working your network works.
This is not a paragraph about “social networking,” tweeting, status updates or YouTube job posting. This is not a strategy for amassing the largest number of names you can in order to hit them up for jobs. This is simply about staying connected with the people you know, and letting them help you achieve your goals.
The people you know are your “lower-case f” friends, your family, your former colleagues and classmates. Social networking sites and tools may make it easy to connect, but not if you are doing it shallowly. If you are doing it well, a beer or a phone call will do. And guess what, Workforce America , it’s not just when the chips are down, either. You’ve got to actually think about other people, and tell them when you do. Help them when they ask, and ask for help when you need it. Roll a few logs and actually build that relationship and you will be surprised at what you can accomplish together.
I have a friend/mentor/former co-worker that I chat with online on occasion, and yes we are networked 4 ways. But we also write notes to each other (stamps, envelopes, and all!) and about one a month we find a way to meet for coffee on a and share ideas. When she broke her ankle, I came by to keep her company; when I lost power during an ice storm, she put me up. And when she heard about a shift in her company that implied an opportunity I might take advantage of, she let me know.
That opportunity stalled in its growth stage. She spread the word about me, and sparked some interest, but the change wasn’t getting off the ground, and I soldiered on where I was until 4 months later, I was laid off from my job.
Enter now a different friend, one I had not heard from in nearly 15 years. For a time, we had been quite close, but her career pursuits took her across country and Life happened to the both of us. I will admit that we reconnected through the new-fangled social networking you are so tired of hearing about, but it was our original old-fashioned friendship that made the reconnection such an ease and a pleasure. When she heard I had been laid off, she asked, “What are you looking for? My company has some new openings…”
And it turned out it was the same company.
These two colleagues, who knew each other so well, who both thought of me as a match for their company, had no idea that they both knew me. Our relationships were so far apart in years and makeup that we were all dumb-founded to learn of this connection. I brushed up the resume again, and I was reintroduced as a candidate. This week I started working at that company.
Your network will not get you jobs, you know that. Even the friend who directly hires you is not hiring you for friendship. The stakes are too high for that. They are hiring you for your skills, your style, and the history of success (both personal and professional) you are bringing to that job. You are literally seeing return on your investment.
You don’t have to be friends with everyone you work with; you don’t have to center your personal life around your work. What you do have to do is invest a little of the personal in the professional, and the other way around to be “top of mind” when the subject of great fit and match is on the table.