• 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.

  • Death and Social Media

    Within the last six month I have had three friends who have lost a parent. In each of these instances I have communicated with all of the electronically/via social media about their loss. While some folks might be aghast that someone would even consider “sending an email”, about a family death, I have found it to be much appreciated and genuine. Whether or not everyone wants to accept it, some of us can communicate pretty effective in this way.

     In the first instance, a friend of mine’s father past away.  The funeral home had some information about the deceased on their site.  I wanted to see this. I read the material and got a review of his life.  I had known him well and I was moved by the words and pictures.  After reading about his life, I was not sure if my schedule would allow me to attend the services.  So I took time and wrote a couple of paragraphs on the funeral home’s web site adding my thoughts about his life to some of the other comments.

     Fortunately I was able to attend the visitation.  As I went through the receiving line, I met one of the family members whom I had never met.  I introduce myself, and told her of my relationship with her father.  She smiled and looked at me and said, “That was wonderful what you wrote on the website about Dad.” 

     Ok I am not looking for a pat on the back, but when I comment on the funeral home’s site I was truly and honestly expressing my feelings, in fear of not being able to attend the funeral.  Whether or not I had met this woman, what I had to say touched her, and allowed me to share publicly how I felt about her father. Thus it was effective communication, and delivered in a respectful manner.

     Two other friends, both fellow SHRM board members, each lost a parent recently.  In both of these instances there were too many miles between us to practically allow me to attend the services.  I shared my feelings with both of them with electronic means. 

     Since that time I have had a chance to speak with both of them face to face.  Both were appreciative of the fact that I had reached out to share my feelings with them. There was no negative perception of the means in which I chose to communicate.  Given the circumstances I feel the communication I offered was more heartfelt, real and original than a card, or flowers, or anything else an “out of towner” might do to express their feelings.

     Going forward from here, I have learned that sharing your feeling with someone who has experienced the lost of a loved one is better than not sharing.  I have no qualms or reservations about sharing my feelings about the loss of a loved one, regardless of the means

  • Social Media – Outside Human Resources – Are you doing it?

    Here in the HR blogosphere it seems like a small, and dare I call it, an incestuous group of folks.  For those of us active in social media “the cool kids” we all seem to know who one and other are.  I must say though, that I don’t think it is a cliquish group at all, in fact I would even refer to the group as welcoming.

    This is all well and fine.  We talk, blog and tweet about employee engagement, talent management, strategic planning verses tactical activities, with an occasional rant about this or that.  If you are reading this you know the subjects.  Now though – I want to branch out, connect with people in my industry write and talk about the products and services my employer sells and services.

    As I said, those of us in HR, hang with other HR folks. There are lots of answers as to why, and we could comment for days on this, but I won’t.  But now I want to move past this. Most of us who are in this space actually work in some other industry that HR.  As I think about my friends in this space here is what comes to my mind:  retail, health care, not-for-profits, banking, food and beverage and education just to name a few.  I want to be a part of and promote social media in my “other world.”

    My question would be are you doing this.  Are you active in social media outside of the HR space, whatever that may be?  I am not, although I am trying.  Further, I have found that people in my industry are not early adopters and are slow to see value, or practical applications in social media.  So this is part of my challenge.

    So I am trying to formulate a plan to push social media through my industry segment and to position “the HR Official” to be a leader in this space.

    If you have moved your industry segment forward on SM or have posted on this before, share this with me, let me know and help me to build on this concept.

  • Takeaways from 2010 and Thoughts about 2011

    Today, New Year’s Eve day is the midway point between the beginning of 2010 and the end of 2011. This is a great vantage point to look back on the year that is coming to a close and forward to the year that is in front of us.

    As I look back at the year and two things really jump out at me. First my oldest son graduated from college with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineer from M.S. & T (formerly University of Missouri – Rolla).   Yes I am proud of him, but I am happier now because he is largely self sufficient.  It is my understanding that now as parent though I must pay for his cell phone forever, and car insurance until about age 30 or so.  The second thing is that I have become immersed in social media.

    From tweeting as DavetheHRCzar to Facebook to 400+ connections on Linkedin I am knee deep – and loving it.  As I speak about social media, I question why am I so interested or involved.  I now know the answer. It is this.  I have really met some great, wonderful, kind, caring, sharing, open, smart, fun people through all forms of social media.  It has been my good fortune to have an opportunity to meet many of these folks face to face throughout 2010, in attending HREvolution, the SHRM National Convention, the SHRM Leadership Conference and the Illinois SHRM State Conference.

    I can honestly says that everyone I have come to know via Social Media has been exactly who they were on-line and they all were good people.  The best tweet I put out this year was after the SHRM Leadership Conference. It was this… My biggest takeaway from #SHRMlead10 was this.  People who tweet are fun people. That’s it – and it is true.

    My involvement in social media has been my choice but I have had much encouragement and guidance from my good friend John Jorgensen, and I would be remiss to not mention him.

    Looking forward to 2011 I see new communities of Human Resources maturing. One could say that SHRM had a tough year in 2010 loosing two key leaders and being the butt end of many posts and conversations.   I don’t think this spells the end of SHRM as we know if, but I think we will see smaller, more focused groups begin to more clearly emerge. Many of the workings of these groups are already in place or are developing.. I am speaking of the unconference events, the recruiting conferences, things that all are becoming more mainstream- and less expensive than the grand-daddy SHRM National.

    A second change I see on the horizon is more of a convergence of the smart-phone –PDA and the personal computer.  The Ipad and the Kendal are at the forefront of this now, but I think by the end of 2011 there will be a major change with this and wireless technology.  I am not sure what it is going to be or what it might be, but the technology in this area seems to be advancing more rapidly each passing day.

    And lastly in closing I predict that Sarah Palin will be offered the CEO position at SHRM, but she will decline to host her own talk show  focusing on reality television personalities.

  • Follow Up to “Your time is Worth Nothing”

    After my day at the hospital I wrote the post called “Your time is Worth Nothing” according to the Medical Professionals.   I did contact the hospital by email pointing them to the post.  The next day I was contacted by a representative of the hospital, who apologized for the wait that my wife and I experienced.  I thought it was nice of the hospital to do this, and I thanked their representative.

     I did tell her that I was not upset with the hospital or the doctor.  The problem is with “the system.”  I told her that somebody has to recognize the system is not working properly and attempt to fix it.  The representative was glad that we were not mad, however my sense was that it was this person’s job or responsibility to call people who are mad and try to make them feel better.

     So the problem will continue…

  • Holiday Wishes….

    After seeing all of the holiday wishes that went back and forth to folks on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving I was thinking to myself, boy there are going to be a lot of holiday wishes being sent back and forth on twitter on Friday (#FF) December 24.  So I thought I would take some of my blog space to, create my own Holiday Greeting Card, and wish all of my friends in real life (IRL) and out here in cyber space a Merry Christmas.  At our house we celebrate the Christian holiday.  This is not to offend anyone, it is just what my family does.

    So from the inside of the HROffical’s home — a.k.a. @DaveTheHRCzar …  Merry Christmas, Happy Chanukah, Best Wishes for a Joyous and Happy New Year.  Dave

  • Sick Uncle SHRM

    This year I headed out to the SHRM Leadership conference with a bit of trepidation.  There was a bit of uncertainty in the air about “the memo.”   Upon arrival my fears seemed to be somewhat justified as the vibe was somewhat muted.  The number of attendees seemed to be down compared to previous years, so from the get go it seemed somewhat ominous.

    On Thursday Outgoing Board Chairman Rob Van Cleave spoke to the group and there was no talk or mention of “the memo.” 

    While there are a number of attendees who are involved in new media at the conference, my sense is that many folks view us as a lunatic fringe element that is hell bent on causing problems. I don’t see it that way at all.  We are concerned for SHRM like you would be a family member that’s ill. Our concern is born out of passion for the organization and what we do.  

    With “the memo” it is like we hear that our Uncle SHRM has cancer and damn it we want to know about that. 

    Well yesterday my friend Jeff Williams took the conversation to the sources.  While visiting the mothership on Duke Street Jeff proceeded to approach Mr. Van Cleave and ask him straight up about the matter (read his post here).

    What we found out is that, he will discuss it with the state council leaders on Saturday.  I guess to use a figure of speech HIIPA rules are preventing him from discussing sick Uncle SHRM with the whole family.  He will talk to the family elders on Saturday and hopefully we will all feel better about old Uncle SHRM.

  • How I got my Friend A Job Using LinkedIn

    With my new found status as Director of Social Media for the IL State Council of SHRM I have had a number of folks question me about social or new media and its use.  During the summer I met a local SHRM chapter member at a chapter event.  She asked if we could discuss SM. I chatted with her a while and gave her some ideas.  Being a networking kind of guy, I gave her a business card and told her to call me if she wanted to talk more or had any questions.

    Well she did call me, and wanted to know more about Linkedin and Twitter.  So we agreed to meet at Panera and discuss some of her questions.  During lunch she had to take a call, as she was in transition at that time and actively pursing employment.   After this meeting, I encouraged her to trade emails or mock group issues with me so she could get a feel for how Linkedin functioned.

    Fast forward to almost Thanksgiving, when I spoke to my friend again.  She told me that she had landed a new job.  She landed the job through an old friend from high school who was now working as a recruiter.  She told me this recruiter had over 500 connections on Linkedin.  This recruiter was staffing a job she had been eyeing and low and behold she ended up getting this job.  And it was all because of Linkedin.

  • U.I.S. HRM- FA10

    Now that I have my own blog site, I can write whatever I want and not worry too much if I offend someone, or if I narrow-cast directed at an audience that is too small.

    This post goes out to these fine people…

    Laura Gasparas

    Brenda Blanchar

    Lisa Touloumis

    Tonya Laux

    Jenni Case

    Mindy Hassebrock

    Niccol Stout

    Thiyumi Abesysinghe

    Linda Bomya

    Shane Stafford

    Lindsay Birdsong

    Becky Skehan-Passie

    Aaron Banks

    Danielle Haley

    Brandie Forcum

    Michelle Theobald

    Rachel Ona

    Kristina Miller

    Kari Elliott

    Ryan McKillips  _–>>> GO BLUES!

    Kyle Nestlehut

    Kendall Burrage

    Patrick Davis

    Amy Zappo

    Alisha Kulek

    Randy Knuppel

    Chelsea Jones

    Lawrence Crowley

    Lacey Pollock

    Lesley Kaspraun

    Andrea Bennett

    Amy Hallmark

    Matthew Scrivano

    James Schacht

    Tara Sablotny

    Timothy Dillon

    Matthew Duff

    Christine Magallon (good to see you again!)

    Bailey Meek

    Steve Blythe

    Sinh Mai

    WHEW! Damn that’s a big class

    I wanted to thank all of you guys for being a great audience and for taking the time to write thank you notes (although I’ll bet that was required- right?).

    I really enjoy the opportunity to speak to students, and especially the one who are interested and enthusiastic about learning.  Keep my name and number and if our paths cross remind me that we met and how. Use this tactic to your advantage.  You should do this with all of the other HR people you meet. We are, after all people people.

    You have a great instructor, Donna Rogers, learn all you can from her and all of the other classes you take at UIS which is a fine institution.  I graduated from there and have done ok too. Thanks again – Dave!