WOH 85: Stop Apologizing for Being in HR

“We need to own what we do. We’ve been apologizing and apologetic for being in HR instead of owning what we do. Every other profession says, I’m a salesperson, I’m a finance person. I’m a marketer. We go, I’m sorry. I’m in HR.” Steve Browne

In this conversation, a replay from the most popular session at HR Summer School 2020, Ben talks with Steve Browne, the most connected person in HR, about how to be an intentional connector, how to add value to relationships, and why HR is an essentially human profession.

If you enjoy the talk with Steve, his new book HR Rising is now available!

You can also see the full video replay in addition to the 50+ other speakers on HR Summer School On Demand at HumanResourcesAcademy.org here: https://www.humanresourcesacademy.org/courses/hr-summer-school-on-demand

HR Summer School Logo

#HRSummerSchool: Time for Extra Credit!

Two weeks ago we ran a live, virtual event that has already been seen by tens of thousands of HR professionals, talent leaders, students, and more. One of the sessions gave us technical issues, so we are running what we are lovingly calling an “extra credit” session and I would love to have you attend!

If you didn’t attend HR Summer School, you missed an epic experience. I haven’t published a formal update based on the event, but suffice to say it was like nothing I’ve ever seen before. We had thousands of comments, new connections, and interaction beyond any other HR webcast or webinar you have ever experienced.

FYI: many of our attendees were interested in the books written by the speakers. You can get those here on Amazon. If you want your #HRSummerSchool commemorative shirt or other gear, that’s found here.

Just check out the map below to see where attendees participated from around the world. It probably wouldn’t surprise you after seeing this map to hear that over ONE MILLION minutes of HR Summer School have been watched on LinkedIn already since the event. 😮


Before I get to the extra credit session, let me share with you a few of the many comments from those that participated in HR Summer School live, in no particular order. Click through the images below to see some of the amazing feedback.

One participant told me that she was about to get out of HR because it wasn’t exciting anymore. After two days of participating in the event, she said her passion had been rekindled and that she was excited to look for a new employer that actually values the input from HR in the business. If she had been the only participant, I would have called this event worthwhile, but thankfully (as you can see below) we had so many more amazing participants.  Continue reading

Creating a Profitable Medical Business

A successful physician’s office is a combination of a standard business and a care-giver’s trusting and open office. The perfect balance makes for a professional atmosphere that welcomes those that are ill, hurting, or curious; however, the friendly attitude and efficient nature are often what drives the patients to return time and again. How can you know if the balance of business practices and patient care is balanced enough to help you create a profitable medical business? Here are some helpful tips.

Using Technology

As technology continues to change, the ability of the stand-alone medical office needs to adapt. From contacting after-hours medical staff for emergencies to having the ability to make appointments online, your website must allow the newest and best innovations available. Billing, reviewing doctor’s orders, and refilling prescriptions should also be easy for your clients as they click through your website. Do not forget to update your phone system when you renovate other office technologies. Your customers should have a click-through system available instead of being placed on hold. Continue reading

WOH 83: Balancing Candidate Experience and Objective Hiring with AI

“The assessment traditionally has seemed a bit disconnected from the job role. This can come across as friction. You’ve worked hard to find a candidate and you want them to join–this can seem disjointed.”

Jora Gill, SHL

Hiring is a balancing act. We want to drive candidates into the funnel, create positive experiences, and bring the best candidates into the organization, but we also need data to help make the right choice. While AI has been challenged for its impact on hiring, new evidence shows that it can help to minimize erroneous decisions. In this conversation, Ben talks with Jora Gill from SHL about how assessments can be blended into the hiring process for better, more objective decision-making without sacrificing candidate experience. 

Learn more about SHL at http://shl.com 

WOH 82: Hiring for Neurodiversity – A Case Study

“We are wasting talent. We can’t afford as a nation, as a society, to waste talent.” 

 Brenda Weitzberg, Founder and Executive Director of Aspiritech

When we talk about diversity in the workplace, we often overlook the concept of neurodiversity, which encompasses the broad range of intellectual capabilities that individuals have. In today’s episode, Ben interviews Brenda Weitzberg about her company, Aspiritech, and how it is able to hire individuals on the autism spectrum for specific tasks that suit the unique strengths of individuals with autism.

The capabilities of each person, regardless of the color of their skin, their gender, or their mental clarity, are unique. As Brenda says in the interview, “When you’ve seen one person with autism, you’ve just seen one person. You haven’t seen them all.” Let’s learn more about how to open up opportunities for those that are neurodiverse.

Learn more at aspiritech.org

Bringing HR Together: Announcing HR Summer School #hrsummerschool

HR Summer School
In the middle of the strange state we are in right now, one thing is certain: HR conferences are out. Of the 10 speaking events at spring conferences, internal training events, and workshops I was scheduled to attend, four of them were canceled, four of them “postponed,” and the other two were moved to virtual. Our family is definitely feeling this challenging time along with the rest of you.

If you were planning on getting recertification credits or building your professional network at an event this month, you may be out of luck.

To compound that issue, I’ve seen posts from friends (and even a new Slack community sprouting up) that have been furloughed, laid off, or outright terminated because of the current economic standstill.

So I decided to reach out to some friends and colleagues in the industry to do something about it. I’d like to introduce you to HR Summer School. This is a free, virtual HR event designed to bring us closer together while improving our skills as talent leaders.

HR Summer School: The Details

This event is something I’ve been thinking about for some time, but the issues facing our various communities right now have pushed it urgently to the forefront. The goal is to not only drop a bunch of content on you, but recreate the opportunity to connect with and engage with both speakers and other attendees throughout the event.

Tickets are free! Anyone can come, whether it be an HR pro, a small business owner looking for HR help, or even students that need some practical understanding of HR in the real world.

This event will be livestreamed the week of June 1st daily from 10a-2:30p central time. That’s a lot of content, but if you register for the main event you can attend any session you want during the conference at your leisure. Simply come and go for the sessions that matter most to you. More details on sessions and speakers will be shared in the next few days.

We will have over 30 speakers sharing their insights around:

  • recruiting
  • training
  • inclusion and diversity
  • talent management
  • leadership development
  • managing teams
  • coaching and mentoring
  • wellness and wellbeing
  • resilience
  • and more!

In addition, we will be hosting daily trivia competitions to add to the “fun factor,” courtesy of our friends at Water Cooler Trivia.

We have several amazing supporters already lined up for the event, but we are accepting a few more sponsors and partners if anyone is interested in coming alongside our team for this community event.

Giving back: Can you help?

I have a request. We are doing this event for free, but our hope is that it will be the largest online HR summit ever. Now is the time to pull together and support each other.

The event link is HRSummerSchool.org

If you are an educator, share this with your students, but also share it with your peers so they can share with their students as well.

If you are an HR practitioner, share this with 2-3 friends you think could benefit from the latest thinking on the topics listed above. Or share it with all of them, we don’t mind.

If you are a SHRM chapter or association leader, share this with your members as a free resource or benefit.

Heck, even if you’re just married to someone in HR, make sure they register and share as well! :-)

At the time of this writing, we already have over 100 people registered to attend and the event hadn’t even been formally announced yet! There’s clearly a need for quality education and connection right now.

Questions? Please feel free to reach out to me at any time. I’m honored to support HR leaders like you in this time.

3 Areas that HR Pros Should Never Take for Granted

woman-in-grey-jacket-sits-on-bed-uses-grey-laptop-935743 (1)It’s true what they say — a company is only as good as its people. It is successful because of the hard work of the employees. It is respected because the people that are in its ranks command respect. If the company wants to last long, then it really should invest in its people.

Human resource management is here to take care of the heart of every organization. The people that work for HR make sure that the company’s workforce is well taken care of in every way possible. HR professionals have many responsibilities, such as taking care of compensation, and planning employee engagement activities. 

But there are less talked about HR areas that modern professionals shouldn’t overlook. More than just assistance with their w2 form for taxation and their annual summer outings, employees also need help in ensuring their well-being, resilience, and coaching/learning capacities. Here are some areas of opportunity where you can support employees that in turn support the growth of the company.

Well-Being and Wellness 

A person’s needs do not change whether they are at home or in the workplace. We all want to be safe and our sanity kept intact. No one wants to work in fear or under constant stress. Because of this, HR should always be at the forefront in ensuring that the work environment in their company does not become toxic. They should watch out for signs of toxicity such as bullying, gender- or sex-based discrimination, and power tripping (such as when seniors make juniors do their tasks just  because they can). 

The last thing that HR will want to do is assume that such issues cannot happen in their companies. The above issues are tendencies observed in many contexts across cultures. Clear policies regarding these things should be made and communicated to all employees, including the bosses.


Just because HR works to keep employees from harm doesn’t mean that they should just brush aside the fact that challenges are constantly present. Employees should also be supported in such a way that their resilience to challenges and adversity is significantly improved. 

There are negative events and outcomes that are beyond anyone’s control. Take the COVID-19 pandemic as an example. This global phenomenon has affected lives in significant ways. Without resilience, anyone will easily succumb to the pressure that this brings. HR can address resilience issues by organizing programs that help promote mental health. At the very least, HR should communicate in convincing ways that they care about the workers’ welfare. When in a pandemic, HR in coordination with management can relax the pressure on reaching pre-determined goals for all employees during a stressful time.

Coaching and Learning

Many companies invest a significant amount of resources in employee training. They send their employees to seminars and conventions within the locality or even overseas just to get the latest news in their respective niches. This is great, and there is no reason for this to stop. Learning, after all, is the cornerstone of growth.

But sometimes, HR forgets that trainers and managers who are knowledgeable about certain topics should also be trained on how to share their knowledge effectively to others. Great workers and learners are not always the best teachers. To ensure the effective transfer of knowledge, HR pros can make sure that communication channels are always free from all forms of obstructions, including incompetence on both sides of the communication flow.

Making sure that workers function at their best in the workplace is at the heart of the HR profession. All professionals who choose this path shouldn’t leave any stone unturned in their efforts to improve their company’s workforce.