WOH 73: What it Takes to Mentor Women (and Men)

In our study on Disruption and Reskilling, we found that one of the top ways employees want to learn new and different skill sets is through coaching and mentoring. However, mentoring is one of those concepts that is often oversimplified in the workplace. It’s more than a casual conversation or one-way relationship. As today’s guest on We’re Only Human puts it, there’s a level of “needed nervousness” to create positive tension and a supportive relationship. In other words, if you’re always comfortable, you are overlooking growth opportunities and you’re not developing at the rate you could be.

In an intriguing conversation with Major Chaveso “Chevy” Cook, an active duty officer and expert on mentoring and human interaction, Ben works with Chevy to dig into what it takes to create powerful, positive mentoring relationships that drive impact and value for the participants.

Learn more about Military Mentors: MilitaryMentors.org

Connect with Chevy: chevy@militarymentors.org or visit him on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/chaveso-chevy-cook 

 

Weigh In: What’s Hot in Talent Acquisition and Recruiting in 2020?

Click here to give your vote in 20 seconds or less. 

One of the most fun pieces of my work is getting the opportunity to tap into the ideas, energy, and creativity from HR and talent leaders like you and then share that insight with the rest of the world. This year we are revisiting our shortest but most popular study from a few years back with a single question: what’s hot in talent acquisition in 2020?

My team and I will be reviewing the responses, tabulating the results, and creating a report to share the findings and how they compare with our last set of data on the topic. I would personally love to hear from you what is going to be hot for the coming year!

If you want a free copy of the results, just drop your email into the survey after you answer the one question on what you think will be hot in 2020. Easy peasy! The survey will be close on February 7th, 2020 so be sure to respond and share this with your peers so they can vote as well.

Why The Most Effective HR Teams Work Closely With Their Legal Department

There are only two professionals that workers and employers call upon when there are work-related problems. They either call a lawyer or an HR expert. Despite the fact that they both function in similar ways, as far as conflict prevention and resolution goes, they take very different approaches. If you ask each professional the same question, you’re bound to get two different answers to the same problem.

The Key Differences Continue reading

WOH 72: How Intel Designs Intentional Candidate Experiences

Employers have been talking about candidate experience for years, but many of them still struggle to make it better in practical ways. Should they focus on technology? The interview? How the culture is communicated?

Intel has taken a holistic approach to the challenge, intentionally designing specific experiences that attract and engage candidates throughout the hiring funnel and beyond. In this interview, Ben talks with Allyn Bailey about Intel’s strategy for improving candidate experience and the philosophy behind it, as evidenced by one of Allyn’s comments in the conversation:
“Hiring is about taking people with dreams and aligning them to organizations that have hopes and dreams so they can accomplish something together.”

See how Intel treats candidates on their careers page: http://jobs.intel.com

Connect with Allyn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/allynbailey & https://twitter.com/allynbailey

HR Management Tips – Run a Company Effectively

Human resource management plays an effective role in a company’s progress. From solving disputes among employees to presenting a company, the HR field has its great share. 

Nowadays, it is becoming difficult to achieve desired success in business because there is a lot of competition in the business world. And it is becoming challenging to find good talent to expand your services at an international level. For this purpose, a company’s entire staff needs to work hard in order to achieve success goals. 

In order to run a business effectively, HR’s job is a bit difficult as compared to others. That’s why today, I’m going through some effective HR management tips, so an HR manager can keep the employees engaged and running company smoothly.  Continue reading

We're Only Human Podcast

The Top 5 Podcast Episodes of We’re Only Human in 2019

Nearly 11 years ago I started writing this blog as a way to capture my learning moments in a new HR job. Today, I still write a good bit but it comes in the form of reports, research, and case studies. I still create plenty of content, but the podcast has become an increasingly fun and interesting way to gather information and share it with the world.

Becoming a Podcast Listener and Reaping the Rewards

I made a new year’s resolution a few years ago to listen to more podcasts when I had downtime (washing dishes, folding clothes, etc.) or in the car, and I have learned so much and have been thoroughly inspired from that otherwise “wasted” time.

It’s a great tool, especially for those that are “too busy” for professional development. For instance, I recently met an HR director who drives an hour each way to work and home daily. She can’t go to lunch and learn meetings or other development sessions because she doesn’t have time. She normally listens to talk radio but felt like it wasn’t really preparing her mentally for the day and was stressing her out. I told her to take a week and listen to the podcast in the mornings and whatever she wanted in the afternoons. She reported back a week later: not only did she learn a few new concepts that she was already planning to incorporate into her HR strategy but she had reached out personally to connect with a guest with a similar background to her. Score! :-)

I’d encourage you to check out the podcast and try to listen during your commute in the mornings on your way to work to give yourself new ideas and inspiration for your role. Even if you listen to something else in the afternoons, you can feel better knowing you’re educating yourself while you’re in the car, on the train, etc. every day. Also, if you are certified and want recertification credits for that listening time, our team has pulled together some free sets of podcasts just for that purpose.

With that in mind, here is a starting point if you don’t listen to the show yet. If you do, this might be a good opportunity to revisit a few episodes that were most impactful in 2019.

Top 5+ We’re Only Human Podcast Episodes in 2019

  1. 54: Forecasting the Future Jobs of HR and Recruiting: In this rare solo episode (most episodes are interviews, but in a rare case I will take the microphone and lead a discussion on a trend that I think is interesting for today’s business leaders) I look at the changing roles of HR and recruiting and what the future of these positions looks like through the lens of automation and the human skills of work.
  2. 53: How to Partner with Your Talent Analytics Team: During a conference I had a chance to interview a pair of sharp HR and analytics pros from Cox Enterprises. We dig into how to build a partnership between HR and the reporting/analytics team to get better results.
  3. 65: Delivering HR Technology for 75,000 Global Employees at Emerson Electric: I had the opportunity to talk with the head of HR technology for a global enterprise, and this case study offers insights into how to pick technology that meets the needs of the business and build the right selection team.
  4. 56: How Delta Airlines Designs its Candidate Experience: Another valuable case study, this episode explores some of the interesting ways Delta Airlines adds value for every candidate that applies for a job. The airline does this not only because it’s important to create a positive candidate experience, but also because for consumer-focused firms, those candidates are also likely to be customers as well.
  5. 52: The Top 3 HR Tech Implementation Mistakes: If you’re going to buy HR technology for a firm with 100 employees or one with 100,000, then you need to get a few key things right. In this conversation with an experienced implementation consultant, we explore the “big 3” as well as how to solve for them in the implementation process.
  6. Bonus: 62: How to Respond to Negative Glassdoor Reviews: Just one listen behind #5, I’m throwing in a fun interview I did with a recruiting leader about how he responds to negative Glassdoor reviews if/when they are created. This is a good piece of practical advice and a great interview to start with if you’ve never listened to the show.
  7. Bonus: 55: The New HR Leader’s First Year on the Job: Tied with #6 above for listens and a great first episode to try for new listeners. I had the opportunity to interview the head of HR for a research organization about how to hit the ground running in a new role as an HR executive. The insights on establishing credibility, planning ahead, and more were incredible.

If you have an idea, a question, or a piece of advice you’d like to see covered on the We’re Only Human podcast, please don’t hesitate to reach out! Also, if you learn something new or are inspired by a particular episode, please let me know! Love hearing those comments from listeners.

Sponsors: We also have openings for sponsors on the show if you want to get your message in front of thousands of HR professionals as well. Ping me for a media kit and details!

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End of Year Rituals, Personal and Professional

This week I’m taking off work to be with family. Christmas is a special time of giving and we love the spirit that is wrapped around this holiday. As I think about the next two weeks heading into the new year, I think about how much my priorities and my rituals have changed for this time of year (and how they haven’t, in some ways).

I’d love for this to be an encouragement for you to think about how you spend your time during this part of the year as well as how you plan for the year ahead.

Before Kids

A ritual, by definition, is a series of actions or type of behavior regularly followed by someone. However, rituals can change over time.

For instance, before my kids were born, I actually worked every day over the holiday weeks except for Christmas Eve and Christmas day. I loved the time when nobody was in the office so I could catch up on tasks before the new year. To be honest, I loved working when there were no emails coming in, because that meant I could focus on what needed to get done, not on what someone else needed me to get done!

I also used the time to do strategic planning, looking at what big things my team and I would try to accomplish in the coming year. I learned that practice from the best manager I ever had. She would create a theme for the year for our HR team and find a way to weave it into the big projects we were planning to work on, such as “service” or “fun.” They usually aligned with our core values which made it even more valuable for us to be sharing that from an HR perspective.

She taught me so much at a critical time in my career. I learned from her that little mistakes are, in the long run, little mistakes. She loved to say, “We can only do what we can do.” With a small team and a rapidly growing employee base, it was comforting to know that while we were working as hard as we could on a day to day basis, we were also human as well and she didn’t have unrealistic expectations of us. She also emphasized family first, which is uncommon in many high-growth organizations.

After Two Kids

Back to the rituals, my approach has changed over the years. Once our first two were born, I started taking off an extra day or two around Christmas and New Year’s to be home with the family a bit more. I shifted my planning back into late November and early December for the most part. And if I did any work during the holidays it was cleaning out the inbox, organizing the office/desk, and clearing off my electronic calendar from all those things I need to do, will never do, or still need to think about.

The rest of my time at this point was spent with family. Both my wife’s family and mine live within 30 minutes of us, so the holidays involve a lot of driving but in short, concentrated bursts all around where we live. Add to that the fact that our families have about 7 birthdays between November and December and there’s not much time left for other things. :-)

After Four Kids

In the last two years or so, I’ve worked mornings but taken off the rest of the day after lunch to be with the family. However, this year I’m taking off pretty much the entire time both the week of Christmas and the week of New Year’s. I get up a few of those mornings and work for about an hour before the sun comes up and the kids wake up, but otherwise I put everything away for a few days as best I can. Now that the older kids are in school, I appreciate those times with them even more when they are out of school. On top of that, I travel a good bit for work during busy seasons, and I treasure these times I’m at home where I can build deeper relationships with each of my kids.

On a nerdy level, one of the most fun conversations I have with the older kids are about what jobs are, how you get them, and what it’s like to “be your own boss.” They ask such intuitive and interesting questions and it’s so fun to see them growing into sharp young women already.

Add to that the fact that our little ones seem to be growing by leaps and bounds and I quickly realize that life is fleeting, and I won’t have an unlimited number of holidays to spend with them while they are small.

Also, on an even more personal note, my faith is a big part of who I am, and my wife and I have had to work harder and harder over the years to intentionally insert these beliefs in for the kids over the holidays but also into the turn of the new year. The holidays are about giving, about joy, and about kindness and goodwill towards all those around us. We see giving as a key part not just of our faith but of who we are as a family. The older kids are now big enough to experience this with us and we had them personally shop for kids on the angel tree this year to have an opportunity to bless someone else.

Paradoxically, the stress of the holidays makes this sentiment hard to come by sometimes, but we have some family rituals designed to bring us back to that center on a regular basis. In terms of the new year, I’m an optimist by nature, but we’ve also been promised that good things are in store for those who keep the faith, and that’s a belief we are trying to pass down to the next generation.

The Next Phase

I imagine that this will become the standard approach while we have young children for the next 10 or so years, but after that it’s hard to say what might change with the ritual. I don’t ever see myself working full time again during the holidays, so maybe we will plan something else around this time of the year, like a race or a trip. I had hoped to run a race this New Year’s Eve but unfortunately strained something and am trying to recover for a bigger running goal that will happen in March.

Another idea might be a family (or partial family) mission trip. One of the best experiences I had back when the kids were very small was taking a mission trip to Guatemala during the week after Christmas. Spending that week in another country and loving on those people as they celebrated the New Year was quite humbling, and when the oldest girls are a few years older, I plan on taking them to participate in an even deeper experience of giving and service.

What’s Yours?

What is your ritual around family and/or work during the holidays? Do you take time off? Work extra? Take a trip? Has it changed over the years?