• On Site At HREvolution 2011

    My flight arrived in Atlanta on time.  MARTA was simple, cheap, easy and safe.  I walked in the door at the hotel to be greeted by Ben Eubanks, Trish Mc Farmland, Robin Schooling and Crystal Peterson.  Even though I arrived early at the hotel my 21st floor room (same floor as the Presidential Suite – thanks Trish) was ready early – got checked in and the madness has begun.

    We attended a lunch sponsored by People Matter  and heard about their software.  It was a good lunch and good overview of their product.  They are sponsoring the tweet up tonight, so we’ll get real cozy with these folks.  The rooms are great with flat screens.  The only down side is it is a Marriott (expensive rooms), and with expensive rooms comes Un-Free internet – $14.95 a day to be exact.  I don’t get that at the $89 a night hotels it is free – huh?

    So I am getting all charged up for the tweet up. No literally, my phone, my camera, my video camera, my external power supply for my phone – and next me – maybe a short nap.

    It is GREAT to see all of the HRevolution peeps.  Many I know, some I don’t but I am making friend with them all.  Question to me…Hmm are all of these people thought leaders?

    Ok so for now that it – more later!  Some pics here 

  • Dave Top Ten Not So HR List

    As we go through life and our careers, we are always looking for the silver bullet, the fix that will fix everything. Well, sadly I am coming to understand that it doesn’t exist, and if you even want to come close to finding that silver bullet, you have to make it yourself.  And the best way I have found to make your own things is take input from various and sundry sources mix it together in your own way, and then output something as your own. In this post I am going to list some not so HR tips. Mine are not the best, the worst they are just mine. Take these and do what you want with them. This list is some of the things I have picked up along the way, and not necessarily specific to Human Resources.

    So from this Dave here is my top ten list of HR tips

    1. Know your business – besides HR understand your organization core mission and be true to it.
    2. The price is never the price – Oh yeah some sales rep may tell you it cost $100, but you can probably get it for less, or get something else thrown into the deal; the trick here is you have to ask.
    3. Always remember to say thank you – Whether it is to you customers, co-workers, family or friends ALWAYS say thanks.
    4. Know the answer to the question before you ask it. – There is not much that you can’t find out if you just Google it.
    5. Network – always be looking to make new friends, and take the time to nurture the old friends too.
    6. Help others – Do something kind, good or for free for others. This will make you feel good. (Recently for no reason my wife and I bought lunch for the car behind us in line at Mc Donald.)
    7. Be passionate – Do what you love and love what you do.
    8. Exercise frequently – this will do you more good than you can imagine
    9. Tell the truth – Integrity is easy to keep and hard to get back.
    10. Make sure your I-9s are filled out properly

    This isn’t so much HR related, but it is. If you do all of these things it will make you a better person therefore making you better at HR.

  • The Reverse Mentoring Challenge

    I recently attended a student H.R. competition and came away from the event feeling refreshed and just generally better about things. I am not sure exactly what it is but the 30 and under folks, but I get a vibe from most of them I encounter that “all is well.” Conversely when I am around the 40 + crowd, by and large, I get the overwhelming sense that, we as individuals can’t do much to change our fate or what goes on around us. I find that aura to be a downer. I was discussing this with my Project Social Partner Laura Schroeder last week.  Here is what she had to say on the matter.

    Meantime, I know this is stereotyping but these are the feelings I get. What can we do about this? We are all familiar with the mentoring concept. Well I think we need to encourage our younger counterparts to do some reverse mentoring. Just as the older folks take a younger person under their wing and “teach then the ropes” by advising and coaching them on professional matters, it would appear to me that our younger folks could do the same with their 40 + peers in need of a attitude adjustment.

    It would be really nice if our younger pros were able to do this for the older crowd without us knowing about it. I am not sure how you improve someone’s outlook without them know that you are doing so, but I am sure some of these bright young minds can figure this out.

    So there is my reverse mentoring challenge. If you are under 30 take that challenge, I just don’t want to know that you are changing me.

  • SHRM North Central Student Conference Presentation

    On Saturday April 9th I had the pleasure of speaking to the attendees of the SHRM North Central Student games at Lewis University in Romeoville, IL.  It was truly a wonderful experience, and I would suggest to anyone working in Human Resources who has the opportunity to help at a  student conference; pounce on the opportunity.  I did write a post on the Illinois State Council Blog Site if you would like to read more

    And in an effort to keep my word, I did tell the folks in attendance I would post the presentation I used, as I had put a number of links in the presentation. So here you go…

  • Project Social – 6 Month Check-up

    It has been six months since Laura Schroeder and I became Project Social Partners.  We were matched up by Ben and Victorio as part of the roll out of their brain child Project Social.  We were told that we would be part of a small beta group. Laura and I agreed happily.

    While we did agree to participate we did not receive a planner, outline, syllabus or any other guiding documents.  So we were pretty much on our own to figure out what it was that we both wanted to get out of it.  I was really somewhat shocked to find out that Laura lived in Munich Germany.  I thought wow, this is rather international for old Central Illinois Dave.

    Laura and I figured out that Skype would be the way to communicate.  We also learned that there was a seven hour time difference between Springfield and Munich. We established a target time, and we try to chat weekly.  When we talk, we talk about what is going on in our lives and what we want to blog about.

    What we have done is write about the same topic and then we link to each others post.  This seems to have increased traffic to each others site.  We also have seen an increase in followers from each other’s blogs.  We both have also learned more about SEO.  We have learned what days create more traffic for our posts.  Again we are doing this,  so see what Laura’s take on the matter is here at her  blog Working Girl.

    We have encouraged each other to push their personal limits.  Although I still have not yet gotten Laura to do her first video blog, but it is coming.  Laura has given birth to Jonas, who I have met on skype, and even wrote a post about. Laura has helped to validate my thoughts on things.  Sometime I feel my opinion about things is not really representative of anyone else’s, but she encourages me, having referred to me as the everyman HR guy.

    Although I must say out of all of the wonderful benefits I have reaped from this endeavor the biggest and best thing is making a new and dear friend.  Laura and I have not met face to face, although she knows a lot more about what is going on in my life than most of my friends.  I have shared nearly private moments with Laura and her young baby boy.  This is no different than other acquaintances I have made on line.  It is not an unusual way to meet people, it is just another way.

    And the kicker is that once you meet people on line, in second life, any way other than face to face, you always have the experience of meeting face to face for the first time to look forward to.  I guess the next step in this process is for us to introduce our spouses to each other.  My first skype call to Laura was on my wife’s computer, so I suspect this will happen at some point.

    We will continue to do what we are doing, that and more, because Laura and I are both enjoying this and learning from this effort.  How long it will go on I don’t know.  This was our six month check up; we see how this thing looks after a year.

    Thanks Laura it has been my pleasure!

  • That’s the Program -Got It?

    The family visiting GM World Headquarters

    Today’s workplace is a multi-generational place. We have folks interacting all the way up and down the age spectrum. This was the subject of  discussion between Laura Schroeder, and I this week.  You can see what she has to say on the matter here. Now this gerneraltional matter is something that HR folks feel compelled to want to manage this. Sometimes this is a good idea, while other times it might be best just to leave the folks to figure it out for themselves. This perhaps is one leadership tactic on addressing the issues, and some times it will work.

    One of my sons was doing a college internship, working for the General Motors Corporation (pre-bankruptcy). As a college engineering student, he was brought into the plant and nearly immediately put into a supervisory capacity. He told me he found this to be a little overwhelming, but he felt he was being tested by his superiors. Naturally he wanted to do well.

    Understand that this was at an auto plant in the Metro Detroit area. There were seven unions at the facility. My son told me he had one fellow that would not do what he asked him to do. He challenged seemingly everything he was trying to do. My son said this guy was undermining me and everything I was trying to do.

    After about a week one day the veteran challenged the intern again, only this time the intern had enough. My son said he told the fellow, “come with me.” This was one of the first request that he complied with. My son took into one of the deep dark recesses of the plant and proceeded to tell him.. “Look you no good son of a b&$*#. I know you have a problem with a 21 year-old punk ass college kid being your boss. Well get over it! I am here and you are here too. If you don’t show me some respect and comply with my wishes I am going to make it my job, to make your life a living hell the whole time I am here. OK ? And that’s the program, got it?”

    I am not sure the diatribe is verbatim but it is pretty close. This is how my son figured out how to deal with some generational differences that he was forced to address. I am not suggesting that his approach was a text book supervisory approach, but I too have encountered those folks in the hourly world who only understand management and leadership in this form.

    For the record the plant worker and my son did not cross paths again for the duration of the intership.