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04.

2015
Vol.3 Issue 04

PRESENTED BY

09131518
HR Analytics
The new gold rush

Change Management
Helpful tips

Cultural Change?!
It’s not HR’s job!!!

The HR Giant Within


The time has come!

The New Corporate HR Director


20 tips and 20 key skills
María José Fraile, Bettina Rodríguez and Carolina Reynoso Butron
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04. 2015 Vol.3 Issue 04

PRESENTED BY

Features

09131518
HR Analytics
The new gold rush

Change Management
Helpful tips

Cultural Change?!
It’s not HR’s job!!!

The New Corporate HR Director


20 tips and 20 key skills The HR Giant Within
The time has come!
The Human Capital manager in a multinational must have different skills, as complex as their
own profession. PG.06

06 The New Corporate HR Director 16 Change Initiatives


20 tips and 20 key skills Why HR should lead
María José Fraile, Bettina Rodríguez and Carolina Carol Anderson
Reynoso Butron
17 Why Great Strategies Fall Short?
09 HR Analytics A few reasons
The new gold rush Charlotte Ntreh
David Green
18 The HR Giant Within
10 Bounce Back The time has come!
Increasing workforce resilience Lisa Milani
Angela Payne
20 Has Your Career Jumped The Shark?
13 Change Management Five obstacles to career advancement
Helpful tips Tom Sims
Bill McElwain
22 Skills Gap
14 People Management Innovation, the key to attracting young workers
How analytics is changing it Tom Turpin
Bernard Marr

15 Cultural Change?!
It’s not HR’s job!!!
Donna McGeorge
Guest Editor’s Note Vol.3 Issue. 04

HR Strategy and Planning Excellence


is published monthly by HR.com,
124 Wellington Street East
Aurora, Ontario
Canada L4G 1J1.

Editorial Purpose:
Our mission is to promote HR Strategy and
Planning on constructive
values, sound ethics, and timeless
principles.

Article Submissions:
Please send any correspondence, articles,
letters to the editor, and requests to reprint,
republish, or excerpt
articles to:
When I received the articles for the April of 20 tips and skills they consider important Editorial Department,
issue of HR Strategy and Planning Excellence, for a corporate HR Director, and they write HR Strategy and Planning
I made a word cloud of all the used words. they could have given many more! I am glad 124 Wellington Street East,
The main message that the authors seem to I am no longer a Corporate HR Director as Aurora, Ontario Canada L4G 1J1.
be sending us is: HR MUST CHANGE! (the I would have had many deficiencies; I would Phone: 1-877-472-6648
Email: WPA@editor.hr.com
exclamation mark is mine). certainly like to meet the people who have
The contributions can be divided into three all the skills on their list! Tom Simms in Customer Service/Circulation:
groups: Change management guidance, the Has Your Career Jumped The Shark? finds For customer service, or information on
opportunities of HR analytics and what HR “Strategic thinking” the most important skill products and services, call
MUST do, to have more impact in their for an HR professional. Lisa Milani is very 1-877-472-6648 or
email: WPA@editor.hr.com
organization. positive in her contribution The HR Giant
In the first group, change management Within: The time for HR has (finally) come! Internet Address: www.hr.com
guidance, Angela Payne in Bounce Back, Having read the articles a couple of thoughts
gives six tips on what to do when you want cross my mind: HR Strategy and Planning Excellence
to ensure your people can adapt and bounce • Why is it considered to be important Publishing:
Debbie McGrath, CEO, HR.com,
back after change is announced. Bill McEl- what the HR folks are doing? I am not a Publisher
wain also gives some helpful tips in Change member of The Union of HR professionals, Shelley Marsland-Beard, Product Manager
Management. There is no recipe for effective and I think it is more important to focus on Adnan Saleem, Design and Layout
and impactful change management. Listing to what can be done to make organizations great
your people and making sure they understand places to work, than on who will be directing Marketing Offices:
HR.com
the need for change are important ingredients. and executing the projects. 124 Wellington Street East
Bernard Marr and David Green are two of • Change is very often seen as the transi- Aurora, Ontario
my favourite authors who write about HR tion from State A to State B, where it seems Canada L4G 1J1
Analytics, and the opportunities Big Data that continuous change is more and more the 1-877-472-6648
and HR analytics create for HR. In People daily (best) practice.
Copyright © 2015 HR.com
Management (how analytics is changing • I totally agree with David Green when No part of this publication may be
it) Bernard touches on an ethical question: he predicts that 2015 is the year for a break- reproduced or transmitted in any form
How can you use the power of analytics to through in HR analytics. This will enable without written permission from the
enhance the work of people, without being organizations to base their people and or- publisher. Quotations must be credited.
too intrusive into the private lives of people? ganization interventions more on facts and
To submit articles for future issues submit
Clear communication, building a level of less on opinions. your article to:
trust and showing the benefits to people and I hope this April issue will inspire you! WPA@editor.hr.com
organization are key. In HR Analytics David
Green states, “it does seem that the stars of Tom Haak is the founder and Director of
HR analytics have finally aligned and 2015 the HR Trend Institute. Tom has an extensive
experience in HR Management in multina-
will prove to be a pivotal year”. tional companies. From 2006-2014 he was the
In the last group, ‘What HR MUST do”, global HR Director for ARCADIS. Prior to
ARCADIS he worked in senior HR positions
Carol Anderson in Change Initiatives: Why at Aon, KPMG and Philips Electronics. Tom
HR should lead makes the argument that has a keen interest in innovative HR and how
organizations can benefit from trend shifts.
HR should lead change initiatives. Donna Email tom.haak@hrtrendinstiute.com
McGeorge appears to think otherwise, in Visit http://hrtrendinstitute.com
Cultural Change?! It’s not HR’s job!!!
The team that wrote The New Corporate HR Have a say?
Director (María José Fraile, Bettina Rodríguez Write to the Editor.
and Carolina Reynoso Butron) gives us a list
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COVER Article

The New Corporate HR Director


20 tips and 20 key skills

By María José Fraile, Bettina Rodríguez and Carolina Reynoso Butron

What makes a good corporate HR director? The answer is the new emerging realities, instead we must grab and embrace
not simple, we could talk about leadership, strategic vision, each new scenario fearlessly.
flexibility...but in reality it entails a set of many different skills, 2.Tip: Predict the future
being skilled in different contexts and times, having a global and Key skill: Vision
local vision, knowing what makes an excellent professional. The This isn’t about the art of prediction. Forecasting the future is
Human Capital manager in a multinational must have different also about managing change, detecting emerging trends before
skills, as complex as their own profession. Of course, all of these they take root, and anticipating any situation. It’s about going
can be worked at and developed. In this regard, it is important that one step further. There’s no perfect formula on how. Just be
that these professionals be vigilant, because your post today is constantly curious, forever alert to the local and global reality,
highly strategic; good talent management marks the difference read different media, study trends, analyze different indicators;
between excellent organizations and those that are left behind. and travel, travel and walk a lot. As Don Quixote said, “He, who
Especially at a moment when it’s commonly known that it’s so reads a lot and walk a lot, sees a lot and knows a lot.”
hard to find the right people for each position, and even more 3.Tip: Strengthen continual learning and training
to retain them. In this article, we have collected twenty tips Key skill: Constant learning
and skills that we consider very important for a corporate HR None of this makes sense if one doesn’t train up competencies,
director, to guide him or her through developing and improving and promote global learning throughout your organization. In
skills, on the day to day job, although we could cite many more, the current “liquid” context we speak of, a key responsibility
of course. Let’s take a look at them. of corporate HR management is to make sure that there is no
gap between the employees’ tasks and their level of training to
perform them. It’s interesting to combine traditional training
styles with new trends (MOOCs, e-learning, webinars, wikis,
etc.) in order to build a “global learning environment,” ideally
on a single platform that is always accessible and nurtures col-
lective intelligence.
4.Tip: Align strategically with management
Key skill: Business vision
Behind are the times when each department worked in isola-
tion. Today, everyone is aware that the HR department works
together with all other departments and with management. Not
only are they aligned, but also their indicators have become
critical to business management. And talent management is
considered one of the top three priorities for CEOs worldwide.
Stay alert, because this is how predictive analytics will play a
key role.
5.Tip: Strengthen HR within the organization
Key skill: Involvement
Good talent management will unquestionably lead to a posi-
tive perception of HR held by the entire organization. This is
the best way to promote our department internally. However,
the corporate HR director must be astute and should know how
Click here for a high resolution image to promote his department’s actions, among both employees
and management, to get them to adopt policies as their own
Strategy throughout the entire organization. In this case, the analytical
1.Tip: Manage transformation indicators we spoke of earlier may be very useful in demonstrat-
Key skill: Adaptability ing ROI internally.
We live in a changing world; we have gone from local to global, Management
from the physical to the virtual, from certainty to uncertainty. 6.Tip: Integrate global with local
A “liquid time,” quoting the words of the sociologist, Zygmut Key skill: Flexibility
Bauman. The key competence to work in this context is the Today more than ever, “glocal” (global-local) has become
“ability to adapt to change.” If the only certainty these days is the new panacea of any organization. It’s about having global
that everything changes; then it’s useless to turn a blind eye to HR policies, while integrating local and regional peculiarities.

6 Submit your Articles HR Strategy and Planning Excellence Essentials presented by HR.com | 04.2015
The New Corporate HR Director

receive training for international mobility very early on, turning


this into a plus for career development rather than an experience
to be compensated with fat benefit packages.
9.Tip: Count on the best technology
Key skill: Technological innovation
One of the trump cards for achieving integrated HR man-
agement is to have the technological tools that facilitate it. A
global HR solution — with one unique record per employee
worldwide for global management throughout the working
lives of employees, from the recruitment process to full-blown
development within the organization — will greatly facilitate
this undertaking. A solution, which also allows for the different
local needs and integrates these so that we can find out what
is happening in our organization worldwide in real time and
obtain the analytical indicators required to improve our day to
day activities.
10.Tip: Boost company-wide engagement
Key skill: Employee experience manager
One of the things to bear in mind today is the importance of
the “experience” gained both at the internal and external levels.
It’s no longer just about selling a product, but also the engaging
experience that comes with it. It’s no longer about only reward-
ing employees, but also making their days in the company a
pleasurable activity, satisfying and motivating them. Good steps
towards work life balance, strengthening initiative, innovation
and creativity in employees and work flexibility, among others,
will help to create this state of well-being.
Communication
11.Tip: Be a global information and communication source
Key skill: Communication
The HR department must not be isolated. It must also be a
source of information for the entire company and the central
hub of communication. This way, the organization becomes
open with information flowing freely and boosting communica-
That’s why a good corporate human resources policy must be tion between employees. Internal social networks, communities
the result of efforts to dialogue and share business best practices and shared knowledge centers are essential, and also help us to
internationally, without losing sight of the need to promote a reinforce the improvement of internal skills, the search for the
common and inclusive HR culture. best talent or mutual support networks.
7.Tip: Manage global complexity 12.Tip: Keep a marketing focus
Key skill: International vision Key skill: Brand management
Our world is global, so HR managers must sidestep tactics Nowadays marketing has to be developed globally across the
based on border differences, and think of their organization as entire company. A corporate brand strategy involves the entire
a whole. International talent management raises very important organization at all levels. To a large extent, this requires a much
and diverse challenges. One is the great challenge of “talent gap” more multi-functional collaboration than ever. Setting up close
or the distance between the skills required and those found in links between the marketing and HR departments amplifies com-
employees today. This requires tools for searching the best talent munication towards the (respective) customers. A corporate HR
worldwide, and also knowing how to train and find the best director can play a key role in helping to develop this chain of
internal talent. Another key challenge is talent retention, when brand enhancement that starts with the organization’s internal
we have very low numbers of truly loyal staff today. values and culminates with the perception of the values the
8.Tip: Manage diversity company wants customers to experience. This way marketing
Key skill: Integration techniques also help foster the development of the strategies of
It then goes to follow that there’s a need to work with very the HR department itself.
diverse teams. Different generations — millennials bring in a 13.Tip: Transmit the corporate identity
new approach to the current labor model, demanding greater Key skill: Value broadcaster
flexibility on the job and greater corporate responsibility. Differ- Since one of the fundamental tasks of the corporate HR direc-
ent nationalities and cultural contexts — this calls for a different tor is to transmit corporate values, this person must reflect these
approach to the traditional “expat” and how employees should and be an example of trustworthiness for the entire organization.

HR Strategy and Planning Excellence presented by HR.com | 04.2015 Submit your Articles 7
The New Corporate HR Director

Personal skills are covered in the next point, but with regards change. We are living in late post modernity, in which the only
to communication, this especially involves improving corporate constant is endless change, although this sounds contradictory.
channels, and give voice to the varied differences from a global In this context, the HR leader must be able to influence stra-
and inclusive perspective. tegic decisions in the company for human capital management
14.Tip: Prioritize the search for the best talent to advance in the right direction, and not miss the boat for
Key skill: Employer branding ambassador transformation. In turn, he must persuasively sell the need for
There is still a long way to go in creating a compelling brand change across to all departmental levels of the company.
and a strong company culture. As mentioned earlier, marketing 19.Tip: Inspire trust
and HR collaboration is again evident in employer branding. Key skill: Trustworthiness
Collaborating as a whole on brand strategy, while ensuring More than ever in uncertain times, it is crucial for the cor-
the company meets its commitment, together with how the porate HR leader to build trust throughout the organization.
company culture breathes daily will enhance talent recruitment This is achieved with a set of different skills, such as coherence,
and retention—one of the top priorities of HR leaders today. It responsibility, dedication and strong leadership. It is not easy
is therefore important to develop a strategy for selecting global to manage uncertainty. Not knowing what will happen in times
talent with all the tools for innovation at our disposal (social of constant change can cause stress, anxiety or fear in many
recruiting, big data, predictive analytics, etc...). employees. That’s why trust in the company must be above all
15.Tip: Manage change in communication reinforced at the corporate level.
Key skill: Social focus 20.Tip: Be flexible and reconcile
In our era we have lived through the last major change in com- Key skill: Open minded
munication, we have moved from mass media to interactive com- Today it is vital to be open to change, because as we have been
munication through internet. Communication is a facet added saying, the remedy is uncertainty. This forces us to improvise,
to every area of our lives through mobile devices. We cannot adapt to new situations, and always seek to improve on the current
just talk of social networks, but rather a social, multi channel, state. All this is impossible if the HR leader is not open to new
multimedia and constant communication. Our organization ideas, flexible in the face of circumstances for transformation,
must not stay stuck in the old one-way communication and it and willing to reconcile all aspects of diversity that we have been
should enhance interaction in all directions and senses. This is discussing from the start. And as we mentioned, the keys to this
especially critical in a multinational organization: The corporate open mind are insatiable curiosity and constant learning.S&P
HR department must work to break down the physical barriers
that block these communication modes from taking place, and María José Fraile is the Meta4 Corporate HR Director with extensive
enhancing access for all employees to the same organization-wide experience in the people management field, adjusting the HR function to
the different developmental stages of a company: hyper-growth, mergers and
resources for engagement. acquisitions, restructuring, crisis management, among others. She has also
Personal Skills had the opportunity to work directly in the product line, supporting software
application design, consulting and pre-sales solutions for HR management
16.Tip: Exemplify integrity and knowledge management.
Key skill: Integrity Connect: María José Fraile
Follow @MariaJoseFraile
As we said earlier, the corporate HR leader must be an example
of the kind of corporate management he wants to promote.
Bettina Rodríguez graduated in Foreign Trade and Marketing, and holds an
Such that his actions and decisions must be aligned with this MBA from the Instituto de Empresa. She has held various positions in train-
management without contradictions. This implies cultivating an ing, pre-sales and marketing. Her professional career has always developed
in the international environment of B2B companies in the HR technology
upright and determined personality. That’s not to say that one sector. She currently manages the Meta4 Corporate Marketing department.
cannot make mistakes, but one must be capable of rectifying Connect Bettina Rodríguez Flick
Follow @bettinarflick
and returning to the right path when it happens.
17.Tip: Inspire the entire organization
Key skill: Leadership Carolina Reynoso Butron develops the Meta4 social media strategy and mar-
keting content for each of the different markets in which the company oper-
There’s been much talk about the most important qualities ates: Global, France, Latin America, and Spain, among others. Her interest in
of a good leader, but it is important to stress here the relevance continuous learning has led her to train in different disciplines at universities
in Madrid, Paris and Salamanca. She holds a BA in History, Communication,
of this quality in a multinational company. Leading all parts MA in Multimedia Journalism, and her latest research work focused on the
of the organization towards a common goal; managing diver- phenomena of “gamification”.
Connect Carolina Reynoso Butron
sity and integrating the differences require a high degree of Follow @CarolReynoso
commitment and charisma. Inspiring the entire organization,
regardless of geography or cultural circumstances is no easy task
Would like to Comment? Please Click Here.
and will require a combination of what we talked about earlier:
Stronger communication, the right technology tools and good
management.
18.Tip: Be influential
Key skill: Persuasion
These days it is not enough to be a strategist or manager, the
HR leader at the corporate level has to be an agent of global

8 Submit your Articles HR Strategy and Planning Excellence Essentials presented by HR.com | 04.2015
FEATURE

HR Analytics
The new gold rush

By David Green

Maybe it’s something in the water or perhaps it’s simply the However, before HR joyously exclaims ‘gold’, a note of caution.
advent of a new year and all the hype that accompanies it, but It wasn’t that long ago Bersin (yes, him again) published a fairly
it does seem there has been a visible momentum shift in the damning indictment of HR’s immaturity with analytics. This study
adoption of analytics in HR. (see Figure below) showed that only 4% of companies had achieved
Writing in Forbes, industry sage Josh Bersin boldly proclaims the capability to perform “predictive analytics” on their workforce and
“the geeks have arrived in HR” and that HR departments are only 14% had done any significant “statistical analysis” of employee
finally “getting serious about analytics. And I mean serious”. HR data. This leaves a whopping 86% with fool’s gold rather than the
has been dipping its feet in the analytics ocean for years without genuine article. All the more reason to hope that Taylor’s call to arms
fully taking the plunge, but Bersin asserts that instead of just for HR cross-pollination will be heeded.
“talking about the opportunity to apply data to people decisions,
companies are now stepping up and making the investment.”
From my discussions with HR leaders I sense too that the
accelerator pedal has been pressed to the floor even if many
organisations are still in the embryonic stage of datifying their
HR departments.  On ERE, John Zappe  latched onto Bersin’s
article and cited supporting research from Wanted Analytics that
the number of human resources jobs advertised in Q4 2014
requiring “big data” and analytical skills had risen markedly
year-on-year by 54%.
Could we be on the precipice of the HR equivalent of a gold
rush? CHROs and other CXO have watched with envy as com-
panies as diverse as Unilever, ABN Amro, Shell and Sears have
built HR analytics functions and reaped the benefits of applying
a data driven approach to talent. HR has suddenly become an
interesting career destination for a number of hitherto unlikely
highly skilled ‘geeks’. In the same Forbes article, Bersin talks of Bersin by Deloitte’s Talent Analytics Maturity Model
“PhD statisticians, engineers, and computer scientists together, all Click here for a high resolution image
working on people analytics for their companies”.
Initiatives like the CIPD led ‘Valuing Your Talent’, which aims to
provide employers with a clearer understanding of, and common means

“ Maybe it’s something in the water or perhaps it’s sim-


of describing, the way in which people impact the performance of
their organisation will certainly help HR sort the wood from the trees.
Time will tell if Bersin is right to call it as he has, but it does seem
that the stars of HR analytics have finally aligned and 2015 will prove
ply the advent of a new year and all the hype that ac-
to be a pivotal year. Let’s hope so because as to paraphrase Mark Twain’s
companies it, but it does seem there has been a visible character Mulberry Sellers: “There’s gold in them thar data” and “there’s
momentum shift in the adoption of analytics in HR. millions in it”. S&P

David Green is a Director at Cielo, the leading global Recruitment Process


Outsourcing and talent acquisition firm. David has helped a number of
organisations design data driven talent acquisition programmes that drive
In another excellent recent article (A Quant, Physicist, & effectiveness, growth and competitive advantage. He also speaks and writes on
HR Analytics and other key tenets driving the seismic change in the future of
Chemist Walk Into HR), Benjamin Taylor – Chief Data Scientist work.
(now that’s a job title and a half ) at HireVue and one of the Email david.green@cielotalent.com
Follow @david_green_uk
‘geeks’ highlighted by Bersin explains what attracted him from Connect David Green
Wall Street to HR. Taylor makes an irrefutable case of why HR is
ripe for disruption, has multiple challenging data problems and Would like to Comment? Please Click Here.

demands cross-pollination from other industries. This clarion call


defines why HR presents such a compelling career proposition if
you just happen to be a nuclear physicist, chemist, mechanical
engineer, data scientist or meteorologist.

HR Strategy and Planning Excellence presented by HR.com | 04.2015 Submit your Articles 9
Bounce Back
Increasing workforce resilience

By Angela Payne

W orking today requires that we be change ready. Markets supports have to be marshalled and resiliency has to be cultivated.
shift, needs evolve and the competitive landscape is redrawn. 3.Communicate clearly and consistently. There’s nothing more
Organizations need employees who can adapt, recover and remain damaging than an unfounded rumor and nothing more inevitable
productive in the midst of change, transition or uncertainty. when the organization’s leadership remains tight lipped about what’s in
The Current Situation store and why. The organization needs to be clear about its messaging
Once an organization has announced a restructuring, merger and have mechanisms in place to ensure that everyone in authority
or new line of business, how do you ensure employees can absorb works from the same playbook.
high levels of ambiguity, cope with change and stay focused on 4.Comprehensively engage front-line managers. Front-line man-
business? Today, change initiatives are a common fact of organi- agers are at the leading edge of any change event. Give them direction
zational life. However, the challenge of successfully implementing and training specifically related to the change event. Their role is to
change remains. Change needs to be planned, carefully managed, identify team challenges and apply resilience-building key practices
monitored and measured. during one-on-one conversations with immediate reports.
Why it Matters? 5.Provide tools, resources and coaching. Simple, actionable change
The stakes are hardly inconsequential. From the moment management tools and resources can make a profound contribution
you announce news of change, you run the risk that workforce to managing change successfully and sustainably. As a follow-up to
performance will suffer. Employees living with uncertainty for reinforce sustainability, coach-facilitated group meetings should be
extended periods of time will at the least, experience confusion held to ensure that managers and employees are putting their change
and anxiety that may impede productivity. They may fear for management skills into practice and implementing change effectively.
the future security of their own jobs and may disengage. With 6.Conduct pulse surveys. What you don’t know can definitely hurt
its workforce distracted, the organization as a whole faces a you. You need to keep abreast of what’s happening on the ground and,
cascading set of threats. Falling productivity imperils critical if appropriate, adjust your strategy to ensure that your change event
business functions, compromising customer service and satisfac- remains entirely under your control. Pulse surveys targeting employee
tion. Business performance can plummet. morale and productivity will provide you with crucial insight on how
employees are adapting and whether your initiative is still on track.


What are people thinking and feeling? Have you been communicating
with them effectively? Is the training you’re providing working? Are
productivity levels being maintained?
Today, change initiatives are a common fact of orga- In today’s increasingly fluid business environment, organizations
everywhere are under pressure to adopt significant change with greater
nizational life. However, the challenge of successfully frequency. Those companies that can manage change best enjoy a
implementing change remains. Change needs to be clear competitive advantage. The sooner your people can adapt and
planned, carefully managed, monitored and measured. bounce back, the better you can compete. The more completely you
can maintain the continuity of your operations, the stronger your
performance and the more secure your competitive position. Taking
an organized, carefully conceived approach to managing change is
more important than ever. S&P
The sooner your people can adapt and bounce back after change
is announced, the better you can compete.
What to Do About it? Angela Payne joined Lee Hecht Harrison in 2012 and is the Country
Uncertainty and stress are inevitable parts of change, but a major Manager for Canada. Prior to this assignment, she was the company’s senior
sales executive responsible for managing the sales team on a national basis.
disruption in business continuity isn’t. Resiliency is a trait individu- Angela has held senior positions within the Canadian subsidiaries of Adecco
als can develop and strengthen. Here are six key steps you can take SA for over 14 years, including Adecco Canada and most recently with Lee
Hecht Harrison.
to ensure that your people survive change and bounce back quickly. Email: Angela.Payne@lhh.com
1.Ensure that executive leadership is fully engaged. Major change Visit www.lhh.com
requires major leadership. Top management can sponsor change actively
Would like to Comment? Please Click Here.
and visibly by impressing upon the entire organization the necessity
for change and the benefits to be realized.
2.Formulate a comprehensive, well-structured change manage-
ment plan. No plan, no quick bounce back. It’s as simple as that. The
proposed changes have to be introduced with forethought, appropriate

10 Submit your Articles HR Strategy and Planning Excellence Essentials presented by HR.com | 04.2015
Employees choose
the areas of focus
they want to work on.

As an employer, are you committed to helping your 1 Choose area of focus Employees choose
how they learn.
employees become engaged, better performers and
motivated each and every day?
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FEATURE

Change Management
Helpful tips
By Bill McElwain

What is Change Management? or implement change had been reduced to comparing them to mice
Change management has always been a mild consideration in in a maze. They thought more of themselves than that and the whole
traditional businesses, but it has become a more significant concern subsequent Change Management effort failed miserably as talented
in modern business. It has most recently been recognized as a task people moved away from that particular maze. The book might be
– perhaps beyond coaching. Some businesses are now considering okay to share with a friend, or family member, but Change Manag-
the Change Management task worthy of position assignments and ers and especially New Managers, would do well to avoid issuing this
recruiting efforts are evident that some businesses are hiring Change publication to the mice beneath you. Because that’s exactly how it
Managers, in order to execute change where workplace resistance or will be received.
cultural erosion may occur as a result. Instead; use dialog in group or team meetings that promotes the
While no one truly expects to move through life without change, concept of creative change and employee contribution. This approach
most people are naturally apprehensive about change, and for a very will foster a more cooperative and willing change expectant player,
good reason. If one considers what signs of change relating to survival than a: “Here, read this and brace for impact”, book. People that are
meant over tens of thousands of years. Noticing rivers drying up, or given opportunities and incentives to be the creators of the very change
game and food supplies diminishing; meant our distant ancestors had needed to help the business; can initiate some of the most broadly
to view change as potentially life threatening. Interestingly enough, accepted changes of all. Although the story of Spence Silver and Art
they also became instigators of change in order to protect them- Fry; the collaborators of the Post-It-Note creation at 3M, is not purely
selves against unforeseen and abrupt changes – events that could be a change management story, but it does involve creative collaboration
catastrophic, if not anticipated or planned for. Implementing typical and changes to production and marketing that hadn’t been expected.
Change Management processes, or focusing on the creation of Change Trust the inner spirit of the people within your organization to
Expectant employees as well, is really as simple as deciding which become initiators of truly needed change through challenging and
will best facilitate a fluid and lasting method of business operation. collaborative dialogue. Teams should be guided to create idea lists of
After all, the most successful societies were change expectant and changes needed, or even imagined for their business divisions. These
implemented change with self-fulfilling enthusiasm in comparison ideas should address the potential challenges of predesigned concepts
to coercive regimes, where creative change lagged alongside menial for growth, improvement and market competitiveness. There should
or antagonistic change. be incentives and bonus programs that serve as key motivational items
For obvious reasons, we need to make changes in our business plans, for creative and profitable contributions. Change expectant employees
operational processes, such as safety and environmental functions, are easy to recognize: They are the ones knocking on your door with
financial, and at times, even our product or branding. The people a new idea. Don’t just grin and wish them a good day, spend some
that drive these day-to-day operations may need to be expanded, time nurturing that attempt to seed your business. Perhaps the first
contracted or re-deployed entirely, depending on the change – and idea was a poor one, but think of the passion that drove it.
that change may be so crucial that the very survival of the business There are times when change will not be pleasant no matter how
depends on it. Just imagine the changes at Kodak, while the digital many meetings are held. In my location, the recent drop in oil pricing
camera was on the rise. If you were a front line employee there, could has caused some immediate and painful change requirements for some
you have endured the change? Or, would you have preferred to be an businesses to ensure survival. But it would be folly to throw in the
instigator of the change? towel before trying to create a positive change expectant and change
Change Management Tips aggressive work force. Who knows what great new ideas for equipment
Here’s a true story of a local business that had made a management deployment, modification and utilization may erupt? S&P
change in one of their area operations. It was a fairly substantial
change and involved bringing in a new manager from another area
Bill McElwain is President at Ascent Business Consulting Ltd. Bill has worked
to make some, “Big Changes.” The current management had been extensively in the investment industry, construction, oilfield and transporta-
either fired or demoted and the new guy was going to make it all tion sectors and has over 20-years of Leadership and Operational experience.
Connect Bill McElwain
work well again. Of course, he hit the ground running and with a Visit http://ascentbusinessconsulting.ca/
box of books titled, “Who Moved My Cheese”, by Spencer Johnson,
M.D. The book tells a short tale of mice and humans living in a maze
and coping with cheese arrangements. While I have read this book
and enjoyed it as a comic and simplistic view of human and animal Would like to Comment? Please Click Here.

behavior, it was certainly was not the right publication or method of


introducing change into that particularly anxious environment. The
feedback from the employees that read the book was very negative.
Not that they resented the impending change, but because they had
felt degraded. Essentially, the expectancy of their ability to work with

HR Strategy and Planning Excellence presented by HR.com | 04.2015 Submit your Articles 13
People Management
How analytics is changing it

By Bernard Marr

Google has regularly been voted the best company in America carried out a study in 2013 which found a strong link between the
to work for – its staff get free meals, generous paid holidays, rate of pay required to keep a member of staff, and their level of
access to “nap pods” for power-napping during the business day, productivity.
and are even encouraged to grow their own fruit and vegetables Middle-performing staff could be expected to stay loyal even if
at work. their earnings dropped as low as 91% of the average salary for their
And, despite their old “don’t be evil” motto, Google top brass job. High-fliers, by contrast, would begin to look around for other
hasn’t set things up this way simply because they are lovely people. opportunities if their salary is below 120% of the average.
Like everything they do, their decisions were based squarely on Companies have leveraged these insights to come up with algorithms
data – and in this case the data showed that treating their staff which predict when they may be in danger of losing a key member
well would increase employee satisfaction. of staff – allowing them to step in and intervene.
Employers have been using analytics for some time now to The fact is that in the age of Big Data analysis, measuring the ef-
understand what makes their staff tick – using metrics such as ficiency of staff, and identifying the factors that may be affecting it,
staff engagement to understand what drives productivity and is a relatively simple process, with the amount of data that employers
innovation in the workplace. are now capable of collecting from their employees, and the advanced
The Big Data revolution has accelerated this practice as well tools which are available for analysis.
as taken it in new directions – companies now have more data The benefits to a company which is able to accurately identify why
than ever on their employees, and more tools and technology one particular customer sales representative outperforms his or her
with which to analyze this data. colleagues are obvious. However, if implemented in a sloppy or dis-
But can – or should – we monitor people who work for us in criminatory fashion, they could also lead to serious problems with staff
the same way we monitor our machinery and equipment? Can trust, and the level of intrusion into their private lives that they feel.
their behavior be predicted, or even manipulated, in the same With many companies now routinely scanning contents of emails
way? Is it even ethical to try? and monitoring the activities of their staff on social media, it is clear
After all, people are far less predictable, more nuanced in our that some may feel concerned.
reactions to events or situations, and complex in our motiva- Will employees resent this level of analysis of their day-to-day activi-
tions. If the productivity of a piece of machinery is consistently ties? Some certainly will. But as I said before it will depend entirely
lower than it should be, it’s a safe bet that it’s faulty. If a human on how it is implemented. In short, there are far more useful, and
being’s productivity is dwindling there could be a hundred less provocative uses for employee data collection and analysis, than
reasons – illness, coping with stress at home, or beginning to enforcing discipline over who takes the most bathroom breaks.
feel demotivated by the job. It is something we are likely to become used to over time – just as
The fact that these questions remain unanswered has certainly in the consumer sphere, we are getting more used to handing private
not stopped many with pushing ahead and trying it out anyway! companies our personal information in return for a more convenient
Hitachi’s Business Microscope service enables companies to service.
fit their staff with Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tags And, if the end result is a decision by their employer to double their
which track their movements around the workplace and even paid holiday, provide free food, and encourage them to sleep on the
monitor sound waves to identify how stressed or relaxed they job – it is unlikely they will get many complaints!
are when they speak. As always, I am keen to hear your thoughts on the topic, please feel
In one trial, a retailer was able to increase sales by 15% after they free to comment. S&P
noticed that the presence of a member of staff in certain areas of the
store had a high impact on products sold, while in other areas, their
Bernard Marr is a global enterprise performance expert and a best-selling
presence had very little effect. business author. He helps companies to better manage, measure, report
The devices aren’t limited in use to businesses whose staff regularly and analyze performance. His leading-edge work with major companies,
move around to complete their jobs. In a seated office environment, organisations and governments across the globe makes him an acclaimed and
award-winning keynote speaker, researcher, consultant and teacher. Bernard is
they record how long an employee spends at their desk along with acknowledged by the CEO Journal as one of today’s leading business brains.
how much time they spend interacting with other staff, who they talk Email bernard.marr@ap-institute.com
to, the distance they stand from each other during conversations, and Visit www.ap-institute.com
Follow @BernardMarr
the enthusiasm with which they contribute to meetings.
It may sound Orwellian, but how well it is received by staff will
Would like to Comment? Please Click Here.
probably entirely depend on the way it is used. If it is used as a disci-
plinary tool focused on the behavior of individuals, it is sure to lead
to resentment. But, when used as a way to gain an overview of the
company as a whole, and how it interacts to get the job done, it will
probably generate far less complaints – and far more useful insights.
Retaining staff (or reducing “churn”) is often a key priority for
businesses. Top talent is always in demand, and assuring that it won’t
be poached by competitors is always a challenge. To this end, Forbes

14 Submit your Articles HR Strategy and Planning Excellence Essentials presented by HR.com | 04.2015
FEATURE

Cultural Change?!
It’s not HR’s job!!!
By Donna McGeorge

O ver lunch with an HR professional recently, he asked other function or leader would play. The responsibilities that
me if I would be interested in engaging with them around a fall into the function of HR can have a tremendous impact.
cultural change project. By his description, the culture was in • Design of the employee value proposition
sore need of a boost and perhaps if I came in and offered a few • Recruiting for the desired culture,
“motivational” workshops, we might fix it. • Education/training,
I asked who in the leadership team is asking for this? What • Leadership succession planning... to name a few.
does the leadership team want from the culture? Who is your And the role of Finance? Designing systems and processes
champion or sponsor for this? I fully expected him to reply “The that support the culture.
CEO”. Instead, he said, “No-one. It’s me.”


He went on to explain that the leadership team is “too busy”
for this and has delegated it to HR, and in turn, it was delegated
to him. I felt very sorry for him as I believed he is either being
set up to fail, or the leadership in the organisation have no idea
It’s only when you have ALIGNMENT between the vision
what it takes to bring about cultural change. of the organisation and the vision of the culture, SPON-
SORSHIP at the highest level of the organisation and
support from the senior, or executive leadership team,
and a co-ordinated change management  PLAN  that
you can begin to bring about cultural change.

The role of Sales and/or Marketing? What are the key mes-
sages we want our customers to know about our culture. Or IT?
How do we provide technological infrastructure to support the
culture we want to build.
It’s not one person’s job, it’s everyone’s job.
AND it takes time. Hosting motivational workshops or events,
sending e-mails, and putting posters on a wall will not fix it.
It’s only when you have  ALIGNMENT  between the vision
Click here for a high resolution image of the organisation and the vision of the culture, SPONSOR-
SHIP at the highest level of the organisation and support from
I believe there are three key factors he needs to consider to the senior, or executive leadership team, and a co-ordinated
get started: change management PLAN that you can begin to bring about
Vision cultural change. S&P
• Define what you want the culture to be.
• Diagnose where it is now. What do you want to keep and For almost 20 years, Donna McGeorge has worked in HR, L&D and OD
what are the root causes of some of the less favorable aspects of in several global organisations, including Ernst & Young, Ansett Airlines and
Ford Motor Company.  In her private consulting practice she has trained, facil-
the existing culture? itated and consulted to KPMG, Flight Centre, Ford, Bunnings, Nissan Motor
• Design  the future, identifying the key levers to bring Company, Moet Hennessy Diageo China, ChangAn Ford, NAB and ANZ
Bank. Donna is currently working with a number of global companies on
about change. organizational change, and is the author of two books, The Pen is Mightier than
Leadership the Slide (published May 2014) and Get Engaged (published February 2015).
Email d@donnamcgeorge.com
• Do the leaders have confidence in the vision? Connect Donna McGeorge
• Are they congruent in their behaviors? Visit www.donnamcgeorge.com
• Can they stand in conviction about future?
Change Management Would like to Comment? Please Click Here.

• All aspects of the organisation need to be addressed in the


management of the change.
• Impact on, meaning for, and communication to Individuals,
Teams & Organisation
So, what role DOES HR play? I believe the same role that any

HR Strategy and Planning Excellence presented by HR.com | 04.2015 Submit your Articles 15
Change Initiatives
Why HR should lead
By Carol Anderson

Change management is about people, performance and leader- The programs and processes that are typically owned by HR – train-
ship, ergo, one would think HR should be leading the charge (or at ing and performance management – should align to the realities of
least playing a major role). Unfortunately, in many cases, HR is not the organizational change.
involved because it does not bring the skill sets that would be useful to HR needs to lead this effort because “HR is all about people.” HR
organizational change or is simply not even invited to the party. More leadership that can assess learning needs, create formal and informal
concerning is that CEOs don’t hold their HR leadership accountable for learning opportunities, and evaluate the effectiveness are, in fact,
building the necessary expertise that would facilitate effecting change. leading organizational change. If the HR programs do not accomplish
Without the internal expertise, organizations, more often than not, this, they are not relevant.
look to outside consultants to provide the needed assistance to effect Systems Thinking Skills. Change in today’s world is complex, and
the organizational changes they’re looking for. a change in one process can have unintended consequences that ripple
What’s striking here, even with the expertise of outside consultants, through the organization. Understanding how systems work, and being
change guru John Kotter, (Kotter International) still claims that 70% able to facilitate the discovery of interacting systems among diverse
of change efforts fail; this is a pretty dismal record. Kotter’s approach groups of people brings credibility to the change leader.
for “change management” is for organizations to “take a consistent, With organizational complexity often comes silo’d thinking that leads
holistic approach to changing themselves,” and “engaging their work- to decisions being made without effective analysis and risk assessment.
force effectively.” Leaders need to understand the implication of their decisions, and
Changing themselves. Engaging their workforce. Sounds like learn- collaborate effectively across the organization. This is a skill that must
ing, development and human resources to me so why isn’t HR part be developed in leadership. It is also a process that begs for oversight,
of the solution? to maintain the coordinated perspective of the organizational change.
Kotter’s research spans 4 decades and I have almost 4 decades of If HR programs are aligned and relevant, they provide good busi-
HR executive roles in large, multi-unit organizations behind me and ness intelligence that illustrates challenges and opportunities with the
from what I’ve seen, Kotter’s research is dead on. Change may come organizational change. If these programs are not aligned and relevant,
in the form of a merger, a shift in technology, the launch of a new they are wasting valuable time.
strategy, or a change in organizational leadership. And each change or But there is an opportunity here: CEO’s need to challenge their
combination of changes create anxiety and concern in the workforce, HR teams to provide the leadership the organization needs to suc-
which requires strong, coordinated leadership that understand the cessfully effect change and hold them accountable for the skills and
dynamics of change, foster open channels of candid communication, performance. This may mean shifting workload so that HR can truly
and facilitate a careful exploration of organizational culture in the be a change partner, coach the organization and through this, drive
context of the change. successful change.
Leading the leadership in providing the organizational guidance is But only HR has the overall insight into the people, teams and
where HR can bring tremendous value because HR has, or should have, organizational performance that gives them a vantage point that is
a top level view of people, programs and process. They have a unique unique within the organization. If HR is up to the challenge and is
vantage point to breach silos and facilitate organizational change. aligned and relevant, they are in the best position to lead organizational
If HR is going to “lead the change” process, they need the knowledge, change and the whole organization becomes better. If CEO’s need to
skills and resources to make it happen. Many HR Teams, though, are bring in outside expertise to do the work HR should be doing, then
missing the critical expertise needed for leading change. For example, the question needs to be asked “Why do I need HR?” S&P
HR needs:
Originally published in http://attheintersectionblog.com/
Project Management Skills. I’m not talking about HR being project
managers but they must understand the need for effective  project
Carol Anderson is a Principal with Anderson Performance Partners a boutique
management so they can provide good counsel as part of the leader- consulting firm with the mission of helping the HR profession be as valuable
ship team, counsel that could include ensuring there is executive = to their clients as possible, intersecting performance and learning to actually
drive organizational results. She has held HR leadership roles in health care,
sponsorship with authority and courage to make key decisions, having financial services, retail and the military. Most recently she served as Chief
a having a clear definition of the purpose, scope and expected results, Learning Officer for a large health care system in Central Florida, with respon-
and evaluating the results against the expectations. sibility for talent development, leadership, professional and clinical education
and team member engagement.
Learning and Development Skills. With organizational change Email carol@andersonperformancepartners.com
comes the need for behavioral change, and the more dramatic the Visit www.andersonperformancepartners.com
change, the more intentional the organization must be in defining,
teaching and holding themselves accountable for the behavior change. Would like to Comment? Please Click Here.
Kotter says to “engage the workforce,” but that is not an easy task.
It means that the workforce needs to clearly understand both the
change and the need to change. It means that they need a voice to
share concerns and provide input.
Organizational learning is all about setting clear expectations,
providing knowledge and resources, and evaluating and tweaking the
result, and developing strength in leadership to lead change.

16 Submit your Articles HR Strategy and Planning Excellence Essentials presented by HR.com | 04.2015
Why Great Strategies Fall Short?
A few reasons
By Charlotte Ntreh

Do you ever wonder why great strategies fall short? word great? “Have a great day,” “Great, let’s meet at 12:00,”
Here are a few reasons why great isn’t good enough. “Great job, Johnny,” “I had a great time.” The truth is that we’ve
1. Great strategies are a starting point. They are like a fresh marginalized greatness. Great no longer really means great in
ball of clay formed into its initial shape. Shiny, new, fragrant, day-to-day vernacular.
clean. But it’s just that – a starting point for future twist, turns So, the next time you’re creating a strategy, don’t create just
and ready to be shaped over and over. If left in its current shape, a great strategy. Create an effective, efficient, executable, mea-
it will become brittle and useless. surable and adjustable strategy that moves and grows with your
2. Great is relative. Its worth is measured by one’s mind at a business.
point in time. What’s great today may be mediocre tomorrow. Let me know how it goes and have a GREAT day! S&P
Strategy is mobile, ever changing, continually seeking the next
addition. Never quite making it to doneness. Given the speed of This article was originally published in http://www.people-results.com
change, strategies must be fluid and constantly seeking a greater
level of performance. Charlotte Ntreh is a Partner at PeopleResults where she helps clients build
and sustain high performing, impactful and effective organizations with
3. A great strategy alone doesn’t equal success. Successful measurable results.
strategies take into account many things including resources, Visit cntreh@people-results.com
Follow @cntreh
challenges, execution, decisions and drivers. Forward thinking,
continual planning and future actions will adjust and reshape
your strategy. Would like to Comment? Please Click Here.
4. Great is overrated. How many times a day do you use the

HR Strategy and Planning Excellence presented by HR.com | 04.2015 Submit your Articles 17
FEATURE

The HR Giant Within


The time has come!
By Lisa Milani

For over 20 years, CFOs have allocated budget dollars to the average application is twenty years old. Many organizations
optimize the material supply chain. The Law of Diminishing are forced to function on technology that was created before
Returns is kicking in. As a result, it’s time to look to other mobile, social media, search engines and the cloud. Moreover,
LOBs to optimize and gain efficiencies. For some organizations, 75% of those applications are fundamentally customized such
Human Resource departments are undergoing a change that that their owners no longer recognize the antiquated technology.
will completely transform the professional world. The time has Sadly, the companies that are tethered to these applications are
come for HR to become the giant within the organization and watching their IT budgets become drained year after year to
take its seat at the table. maintain them. They throw good money after bad.
While the cost of labor differs from industry to industry, it can CHRO’s must constantly execute and plan initiatives that
account for an average of 20-40% of the organization’s expenses. support all LOBs. The HR organization plays a vital role in the
Modern HR understands how crucial it is to place the data and success of the enterprises they serve. HR’s role in the company’s
tools in the hands of managers and employees, to greatly reduce success is more important than ever as the U.S. economy con-
the expense of the organization. tinues to grow. S&P
Modern businesses are increasingly moving their data onto
the cloud, while setting up access to it through mobile devices Lisa Milani is an HCM Consultant with Oracle. She works directly with
and streamlining their procedures into their employee’s daily some of world’s most successful organizations to streamline processes and
make critical decisions to promote growth.
activities. As they move onto the cloud, they gain a consolidated Email lisa.milani@oracle.com
view of their workforce from recruitment to retirement. They Connect Lisa Milani
Follow @lmilani_HCM
have the tools to transform their entire business and find the
best use for every employee.
Companies that are slow to move to modern HR will con- Would like to Comment? Please Click Here.
tinue to address the same challenges every year. To illustrate,

18 Submit your Articles HR Strategy and Planning Excellence Essentials presented by HR.com | 04.2015
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Has Your Career Jumped The Shark?
Five obstacles to career advancement
By Tom Sims

Y ou may be too young to have watched new episodes of careers on track. The five obstacles to career advancement are:
the sitcom Happy Days but you may be familiar with the phrase • Not understanding the business (whether for-profit, non-
“jumped the shark” that emanated from this nostalgic 1970s profit, or government)
series. The program received enthusiastic support from its audi- • Not developing internal champions
ence during its first few years, but over time viewer interest waned • Not having a mentor
due to a lack of creativity in keeping the series fresh and relevant • Not embracing lifelong learning
with the ever-changing tastes of viewers. Out of desperation, • Not thinking and acting strategically
the writers created the fateful episode featuring “the Fonze” (the The Business: HR professionals often portray themselves as
leather jacketed motorcycle riding co-star) jumping a live shark “internal consultants” to the organization. This characterization
while water skiing wearing his, you guessed it, leather jacket. of the role often leaves the impression that the human resources
From this point it was all downhill for the series and hence the professional is an omniscient outside expert rather than in integral
phrase which became a metaphor for something that has peaked. business partner with “skin in the game.” In order to gain the
Having known and worked with scores of human resources trust and credibility of decision-makers, HR professionals must
professionals over the years I have seen many careers jump the be perceived as insiders who understand the business, talk its
metaphorical shark. These careers often began with high expec- language, and offer solutions that solve real business problems.
tations buoyed by advancement through the various HR chairs Understanding the business begins with a solid comprehension
only to end up stalled. The move from individual contributor of the organization’s critical success factors (CSFs) that, simply
to manager, and manager to executive, are frequent career shark stated, are those organizational attributes and outcomes that are
jumpers. So how does one avoid the shark? By mastering the most vital to overall enterprise success. By understanding these
five occupational obstacles discussed here, HR professionals drivers of success the HR function is able to offer solutions that
(and most professionals), will be better prepared to keep their are focused on those aspects of the business that create the most

HR Strategy and Planning Excellence presented by HR.com | 04.2015 Submit your Articles 20
Has Your Career Jumped The Shark?

value for stakeholders. Lifelong Learning: The old cliché “The only constant in
Some examples of CSFs are speed to market, product inno- business is change” is particularly relevant to shark jumping.
vation, lowest cost, best-in-class technology, and others that, Organizations evolve, leadership changes, customers are fickle,
when actuated, help ensure the viability and sustainability of and technology advances exponentially. All professionals, and
the organization. So, for example, if the company’s success relies especially human resources professionals, must continually stay
on high sales volume due to commoditized low margins, the abreast of changes in their organizations, their professions, their
focus of human resources initiatives should be on programs, customers (internal and external), and the world around them
processes, and practices that help build a highly effective sales to remain relevant and contemporary. Plateaus begin where
and marketing function while keeping fixed overhead as low as learning ends.
practicable. This might include reinventing the talent acquisition Participating (not simply attending meetings) in professional
process for assessing and selecting sales and marketing personnel, organizations such as SHRM, HRPS, and others is a minimum.
implementing training in strategic selling concepts, designing Certifications such as the PHR, SPHR, CEBS, GMS and others
compensation systems with more pay at risk, streamlining the are good ways to learn and demonstrate one’s commitment to the
organization to eliminate excess layers of management, etc. profession, but post-graduate courses should also be considered as
Internal Champions: Developing highly effective working these can add greater analytical and strategic depth for thinking
relationships with the organization’s thought leaders is an es- beyond organizational “symptoms” to the examination of root
sential element in increasing one’s influence and value. Thought causes which is where problems are truly solved. Only through
leaders, as used in this context, can be found almost anywhere in such depth of understanding can appropriate evidence-based
the organization. They can be senior leaders, middle managers, practices be developed for the learner’s organization.
technical experts, top salespeople, or administrative assistants. Strategic Thinking: The ability to think strategically is perhaps
A thought leader is one who has influence within the organiza- the most important of the five career obstacles. Understanding
tion due to position, expertise, longevity (e.g. organizational the business, partnering with thought leaders, having a mentor,
history), or simply respect by decision-makers. and continual learning provide the foundation for strategic think-
Forging working alliances with these individuals is important ing. HR careers are advanced when management perceives the
for two reasons. First, these associations offer valuable insight HR professional to be an “engineer” rather than a “mechanic.”
into perceived organizational problems and needs thereby allow- Of course the human resources function must certainly provide
ing the HR professional to develop results-oriented programs the basic mechanical functions of legal compliance, applicant
and processes that address these important issues. Second, when tracking, HR policies, accurate and confidential record keeping,
seeking support for new initiatives, having thought leaders in employee processing, benefits administration, etc., but it is the
one’s camp can be the difference between approval and rejec- value-adding programs and processes that afford the human
tion. Going it alone is rarely successful when substantial change resources function a “seat at the table.”
is required. Although “alignment” has become an over-used word today,
Mentors: When you ask most successful HR leaders what was it remains a critical element of strategy. As examples, com-
most important in their career journey you will likely hear about pensation programs that are heavy on base or guaranteed pay
a revered mentor who made a difference in their vocational tra- versus at-risk remuneration may not be well aligned in start-up
jectory. A mentor serves as a guide for navigating the personal, organizations. Training programs focused primarily on techni-
professional, and political waters of organizational life. Mentors cal skills at the expense of managerial and leadership skills may
are typically found in one of two ways. Some organizations, not be aligned within traditional organizations having multiple
unfortunately few, have formal mentorship programs whereby layers of management. Onboarding programs that spend most
perceived high potential employees are assigned a mentor. Often, of new employees’ time on “how to” issues versus “why” issues
however, the pairing of mentor and mentee is far less formal may not be aligned with organizations that have a strong culture
as the relationship simply forms organically with no charter or based upon a history of exceptionalism and success. Again, a
rules. These associations are based primarily on mutual respect good knowledge of the organization, its CSFs, its history, and
between the parties with the tacit understanding that there is its culture provide a solid underpinning for talent management
wisdom and knowledge to be imparted/accepted. strategic alignment.
Numerous studies have demonstrated the value of mentoring. If the shark is in sight with your career, avoid it by increasing
So if one’s organization does not have a mentoring program your influence within the organization by addressing these five
prospective mentees need to take the initiative to approach career obstacles. Safe skiing! S&P
someone whom they believe can be a valuable confidant and
advisor. This can be someone within the organization who has Tom Sims, M.S. has over 40 years of experience in senior human resources
and organization development roles in public, private, and government
a track record of success in both producing results and main- organizations. He is the author of E-Mails from Dad: A Contemporary Guide to
taining effective working relationships with others, or it can be Managing Today’s Workforce and has written numerous articles on management
and leadership for US and UK publications.
someone outside the organization with similar attributes. Once Visit www.YourHRCoach.com
the relationship is established, regardless of who or how, it is Email tomasims@comcast.net
Connect Tom Sims
the mentee’s responsibility to be available, open, honest, and
willing – no, desiring - to grow, in order to receive full benefit Would like to Comment? Please Click Here.
from the association.

21 Submit your Articles HR Strategy and Planning Excellence Essentials presented by HR.com | 04.2015
Skills Gap
Innovation, the key to attracting young workers
By Tom Turpin

We’ve all heard about the skills gap across Canada – boomers port & Logistics sector, followed by Engineering, Construction
are retiring and there aren’t enough qualified workers to fill their and Manufacturing.
roles. It all paints a pretty dismal picture for Canada’s economy. In-demand sectors as identified by job seekers:
According to a recent Randstad study though, it seems that 1. Transport & Logistics (44%)
young Canadians are getting the message. There is a wealth of 2. Engineering & Construction (41%)
opportunity for career building within the various skilled trade 3. High Tech Manufacturing (39%)
sectors across the country, and people are taking notice. 4. Industry & Manufacturing (36%)
5. Raw Materials (36%)
6. Motor Vehicle & Parts (34%)

“ Companies like Pratt & Whitney, IBM Canada Limited, and


Bombardier that have built reputations around the newest,
7. Energy (32%)
These numbers may seem surprising, but they point to good
news when it comes to shrinking the skills gap and strengthening
Canada’s economy. There’s still work to be done at the founda-
best or most efficient technologies get a ringing endorse- tional level, though. When it comes to skilled trades, a shift in
ment from Canadian employees, who this year rank these thinking needs to be made in schools and at home that the blue
collar jobs of today are the while collar jobs of tomorrow. The
and other innovators in the top 20 companies Canadians appetite is there among our youth – let’s feed it.
want to work for. A new generation of workers requires a new approach to re-
cruiting. The recent Randstad study reveal that Facebook has
topped LinkedIn as the preferred social channel for Canadian
What’s drawing them in could be the opportunity for explora- job seekers. Are you ready? S&P
tion, creation and experimentation within so-called traditional
fields. Many of today’s job seekers have grown up in a high-tech,
dynamic era where the first and fastest to market are rewarded.
We believe that innovation – and the chance to work within
a team of innovators – is appealing to Canadian workers. Job
seekers who responded to our Employer Branding Study say they
are increasingly attracted to companies who require engineers,
computer scientists, data architects and other highly skilled,
technical professionals.
Companies like Pratt & Whitney, IBM Canada Limited, and
Bombardier that have built reputations around the newest, best
or most efficient technologies get a ringing endorsement from
Canadian employees, who this year rank these and other in-

Click here for a high resolution image

“ When it comes to skilled trades, a shift in thinking needs to


Tom Turpin is President of Randstad Canada, the country’s largest staffing,
recruitment and HR services provider.
Connect Tom Turpin
be made in schools and at home that the blue collar jobs of Visit http://www.randstad.ca/

today are the while collar jobs of tomorrow. The appetite is


there among our youth – let’s feed it.
Would like to Comment? Please Click Here.

novators in the top 20 companies Canadians want to work for.


A positive sign for the skills gap
This is an important consideration in terms of addressing
Canada’s looming skills gap. The survey numbers show that
nearly 44% of Generation Y are seeking out jobs in the Trans-

HR Strategy and Planning Excellence presented by HR.com | 04.2015 Submit your Articles 22
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