Buy a Book, Get Free Stuff: Limited Time Only

We interrupt your regularly scheduled programming for this important announcement!

Cover design for the new book

Cover design for the new book

This year I’ve written my first book. It’s coming out in North America on December 28th. Since the publisher decided to push it to the end of the month, it’s not a Christmas present–it’s a “let’s start 2019 off with some really cool insights on HR and how technology is enabling us to create more human workplaces” present.

As with all my writing, there’s a good blend of research, fun stories, and examples to make even a book on technology very interesting and actionable!

Free Bonus AND a Giveaway

To encourage you to grab a copy, I’ll be running a special promo. Anyone that buys a book in the presale period will receive a special shirt to commemorate our collective belief that HR is an essential part of the future of work. We’re working on the design right now but it will be sure to get great comments (and plenty of jealousy) from your HR friends if they don’t get in on the presale.

Additionally, for every copy you buy you will get entered into a drawing to win a Human Capital Institute virtual conference pass ($800 value). Buy two copies, double your chances of winning! :-)

Please note: Amazon and other sellers do not send me presale information as the author, so in order to enter the contest and get your shirt I need you to send a copy of your receipt and your preferred shirt size to ben@upstarthr.com no later than December 30th in order to participate. Shirt orders will be made on 12/30 so we may not be able to accommodate late requests.

Note: If you are ordering a batch of 10 or more books for your HR team, your students, your customers, or a local HR chapter or reading club, please let me know and I can try to help with a bulk order to save you some money through the publisher directly.

Questions? Drop a comment below! Thanks in advance for all of your support and I am looking forward to sharing the book with the world!

veterans day

Something Personal for Veteran’s Day

Note from Ben: my wonderful wife, Melanie, recently wrote this as a personal tribute and “thank you” to those veterans closest to our family. She’s taken to doing more writing of late to share personal stories with our kids both now and in the future, and I am always touched by the words she crafts to explain emotions, feelings, and more. Sharing here with her blessing. 

veterans dayFor 20 years, I selfishly thought as Veteran’s Day as just another day. Another day to miss school and/or work.

I remember the day I received the call. I was in Scottsboro cheering Ben on as his brothers and he competed in a triathlon. My phone rang and it was my mother telling me that my dad had received word that he would be sent to Iraq for a year, possibly longer. I broke down, went and hid in the restroom, and thought of nothing more than my father’s safety.

The time that led up to his deployment was hard. We tried to fit in a lot of family time, but we also kept dreading the day we would have to send him off.

Eventually, we all gathered at the airport, hugging him tightly. Then he boarded his plane and was gone.

We coped as best we could. We stopped watching the news, avoided newspapers, and continued to pray for his safety.

We received letters, emails, phone calls, and pictures. Technology has come so far. We didn’t have him home, but we heard from him often.

Thankfully he remained safe during the full term of his deployment, but things at home didn’t go as hoped. His mother was suffering from cancer, and we knew her days on earth were numbered. He received personal leave to come home, but when he arrived, she no longer was responding to us. She soon passed away.

Also during this time, my sister had to have an emergency c-section due to preeclampsia. My niece was born not breathing, but was revived. She was taken to a NICU at another hospital while my sister recovered in the ICU where she delivered. Things were very scary. We kept these details from him until we knew they were both going to be okay.

My point is that not only are our military men and women put in harm’s way, they miss so much family time when they are away. Instead of thinking of today as just another normal day, make it a point to thank a Veteran.

To those veterans both stateside and abroad, we thank you for your service from the bottom of our hearts. 

We’re Only Human 44: 3 Ways to Incorporate Agility into Talent Management 

Companies are putting more focus on helping people grow and develop not just for engagement purposes, but to field a workforce with greater potential and possibilities. 
-John Taylor, RiseSmart
 
Talent management is a process that many companies struggle with. Why? Because it’s often burdened with legacy approaches, opinions, and concepts. Taking a more agile approach can help companies to not only survive, but thrive, in today’s fast-paced business environment.
 
In today’s discussion, Ben talks with John Taylor from RiseSmart about how employers can be more intentional about creating a talent approach that helps people perform at their best. The conversation touches on everything from recognition to the importance of agility, highlighting the key points today’s talent leaders need to know to update and modernize their more conventional approaches to talent management. 
 
Learn more about the Lighthouse Research Virtual Events schedule, check out http://lhra.io/virtual 
employee experience investigation

How Do Investigations Impact the Employee Experience?

The HR buzzword of recent years has been employee experience, but it’s a natural extension of the focus on the customer and candidate experiences. Typically, the employee experience focuses on the positive elements and aspects of the workplace, but what about the other types of activities that aren’t as positive, such as investigations? Is there a way to maintain a positive experience so that the workforce appreciates the respect, fairness and clear communications that make up part of the process?

[7 lessons for creating an amazing employee experience]

employee experience investigationThe point isn’t just to try and dress up something to look more fun or important than it really is. The point is to create an environment and a culture where people feel comfortable bringing up issues when necessary because they know the employer will take them seriously and work to resolve them in a timely manner. The key elements of that include respect, fairness and transparency, as we’ll explore more deeply below.

Core Components Impacting Employee Experience

Continue reading

Lisa Seacat DeLuca

We’re Only Human 43: IBM Leaders Share How Algorithms and Bias Affect Us

Amber Grewal

Amber Grewal

Recently Amazon announced it had shut down a talent-finding algorithm built by its internal team. Why? Because it was perpetuating bias against women at the tech giant, which is unacceptable in today’s work environment.

With so many bots, algorithms and other tools being used to automate our work and personal lives, it’s important to think about how this affects each of us. Is there bias in the algorithms that drive our decisions? If so, how do we mitigate that?

In today’s episode, Ben talks with two IBM leaders with diverse perspectives on AI, bias, and more. Lisa Seacat DeLuca and Amber Grewal both join the show to talk about how they see AI benefiting the workplace but also how to watch for bias and prevent it from creeping into the finished product.

Lisa Seacat DeLuca

Lisa Seacat DeLuca

To learn more, be sure to check out the following resources from IBM:

Website: https://www.ibm.com/talent-management
Twitter: @IBMWatsonTalent 
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/showcase/watsontalent

Links to the references made by Lisa and Amber on the podcast:

money pay gap

Should We Be Asking for Pay History Data on Job Applications?

In many states, it’s still legal to ask about candidate pay history. While some states have outlawed this practice, I still get questions like the one below fairly regularly:

I have a question for you that I thought you would be uniquely able to provide advice for. I am currently seeking new employment. When submit an application, the prospective employer asks for me to input a salary into the online application. The field does not allow a range and does not allow letters so I cannot say “negotiable”. How should I answer this since I am experienced professional and I don’t want to automatically disqualify myself by being on the high side of whatever range the perspective employer is looking at. How would you recommend I answer these questions? –A reader in Alabama

So, what should we do?

Rethinking the Question

money pay gapOne reason some states have outlawed the practice of asking for pay information is because it adversely affects certain populations. For example, women are likely to negotiate salary just 7% of the time while men are likely to negotiate nearly 60% of the time. This doesn’t even touch on minorities, where the numbers are often worse.

The problem I’ve always had with this question is this: what your last employer paid you should have zero bearing on the value I have placed on the position. If your former employer didn’t pay well, that doesn’t give me an excuse not to pay well.

The Frank Reality

For the most part, employers don’t set out to ask this question in hopes of messing up someone’s life. They aren’t asking about former pay rates to trap someone in a job making less than they are worth. While that sometimes happens, it’s not the goal for many employers.

The reason employers ask for pay history is so they don’t spend an inordinate amount of time walking down the path towards hiring a candidate they really like only to find out in the salary negotiations that the person wants $20k more than the role is budgeted for.

So, if employers want to avoid this roadblock without running afoul of the law, what’s the option?

At the front of the process, whether in the application or in the early screening conversation, simply tell the candidate this: “Our budget for this position is $X to $Y. Does that fit your expectations?”

[Read more:  Pay transparency, pay equity, and a powerful model for how to guide these conversations]

Yes, you’re showing your cards. Yes, you’re being transparent. But it satisfies two things. First, it helps to make sure you’re legally compliant in any markets where this applies. Second, and perhaps most importantly, it helps to demonstrate that you are dealing in a fair and transparent manner with potential employees.

This long-standing method of waiting until the first person blinks (that’s what career coaches tell candidates to do in salary negotiations) is a terrible way to run the process for everyone. Nobody wants to speak because we’ve all been told the first person that speaks in a negotiation loses. However, this isn’t about creating a combative experience for new hires–it’s about building a new relationship. Don’t you want to start it the right way?

We’re Only Human 42: How to Prioritize Learning in the Business

Is learning a priority for your business? It better be. Research shows that learning, development, and growth opportunities are some of the most highly prized components of the employment relationship, and this is even more important when you have an influx of younger workers as the workplace has seen in recent years. 

In today’s conversation, Ben interviews Corey Marcel of Docebo to discuss how to tell when learning is a priority for the business as well as what happens if learning takes a back seat (hint: it’s not good). 

Additionally, the discussion covers some of the “suite vs. best of breed” debate from recent years and sheds some light on what HR and learning executives should be thinking when they consider this question in their own organization. 

Learn more about Docebo: https://www.docebo.com/

Connect with Corey: https://www.linkedin.com/in/coreymarcel/