Saturday, March 1, 2014

Change is in the Wind

We have been blogging on Google BlogSpot for almost 7 yrs. and it is finally time for a make over and change. Our new marketing team for Human Capital 3.O is working diligently on a new site. In the ever changing world of social media its important that all of our online communication vehicles are integrated. Our website is under construction too....that might take a little longer, but we want to get it right.

Our business is going through major transformations and we hope to have some big news in the next few weeks.

Oh, I almost forgot...I am spending time as the acting Associate/Assistant Dean of the Business School at Adelphi....they needed help...I had some extra time...its only part time and we have plenty of resources to meet your specific needs. Plus I have access to some brilliant business faculty as comes with the about perks.

A Win -Win formula...we don't just call our selves thought leaders we are thought leaders...and we surround ourselves with thought leaders too!

Saturday, February 22, 2014

The Next Generation of Thought Leadership Revisited

The term thought leader is the highest of compliments, and arguably the hardest moniker to achieve. It’s not enough to be good at what you do; a thought leader is meant to be the greatest form of praise, geared towards someone who is on the absolute cutting edge of their industry or making big enough moves to warrant the distinction.
The term thought leader has a relatively traceable history. It was first coined nearly 20 years ago, in the pages of Strategy+Business, the business magazine of technology consulting firm Booz & Company. When discussing the publication’s profiles of major business icons, then-editor in chief Joel Kurtzman made the distinction that those worth talking to were called thought leaders.
The term was so popular that it became its own entity, encompassing leaders and even small businesses. But according to Forbes, the term thought leader is only reserved for those who are “capitalizing on the dramatically enhanced brand equity attained by being a thought leader.”

Today everyone wants to position themselves as a "Thought Leader", but how do you know if you really are one?

It’s one thing to be the most successful, most efficient, or most management-oriented leader in an industry, and it’s quite another to be a thought leader. For one reason or another, a thought leader has earned his or her title because that person's ideas have gone viral. When an idea multiplies and distributes itself throughout the Internet — with the person’s name attached — then leadership becomes thought leadership.
Sometimes, thought leadership is below the iceberg, those in the know can find just need to know where to look....

So why do we claim the moniker of Thought Leaders in the Human Capital might argue we don't fit the definition completely. So I will do a little explaining....Well for one we have been doing the coolest HR programming for our businesses for the past few years. And yes we have all the bling (awards and press) to prove only has to look on my wall in my office to see this. Beyond the bragging we have truly caused a paradigm shift in HR or should I say HC!
We certainly fit the latter part of the definition, those in the know...know us. And those who don't should!

What are you waiting for....

Monday, February 17, 2014

Empathy, Execution and Discretionary Time

An odd collection of topics for sure. A recent conversation with the Dean of the Business school, where I teach and do project work, led to the strangest of leadership conversations.

It started with a discussion of leadership traits that lead to success. Empathy was the winner. Most would offer other options, but think about it, empathetic leaders almost always succeed. And the dean is an empathetic leader, who listens first and feels the pain of his team.

Execution was where our conversation led as bottom line results are ultimately the result of great and even flawless execution. We debated the need for many to have elaborate process or in some cases none at all. Little mattered (unless you do something illicit or unethical) except for executing a plan and reaching desired results.

The third and last part of the conversation was on discretionary time. Not what you do with it personally, but how you get others to provide it to meet your goals…Of course we talked about respect and likeability…If you had 15 minutes free who would you help if they asked…

That’s a topic I have covered several times in my old blog posts…we seemed to be on the same page…

Oddly, I have been thinking about discretionary time as the new currency for the gen Y worker….I am sure I will cover that in a future post…

Sometimes disparate topics collide…especially when you talk to smart people without an agenda!

Saturday, February 15, 2014

A Five Year Plan, Are you Kidding Me?

A recent encounter with a part - time  office assistant brought about a profound conversation. The death of the 5 Year Plan.
Not just the business plan we used to fret over, the personal 5 year plan. For this individual the loss of employment after 25 years at the same business has brought an uneasy reality of living day to day. She seems upbeat and happy even though her circumstances are difficult. Having put 2 kids through college and a third still going, one wonders how she can get by. To be honest I am not sure, I can only take this at face value, which is an individual happy to be working 20 hrs. a week, and the fact that everyone is healthy in their family. The individual told me a story how at an interview recently the recruiter, who was half their age, asked what they saw themselves doing in 5 years. Tough question, do they really expect an answer that is not total BS? If the recruiter were on my HR team, I would slap them side the head, welcome to the new reality of work.

This is not a unique story, as millions of American workers are facing similar struggles. Thinking Five years out is unrealistic for all of them, meeting monthly bills, health insurance concerns, and just keeping a roof over their head is the main plan...No time frames attached.
 The conversation we had did not last more then 15 minutes, we talked about corporate excess in the late 80's and early nineties (expense accounts, company cars, etc.) and how everyone though they had a job for life...Fast forward 20 years and welcome to the new world of work....Temporary assignments, part - time employment, and uncertainty. The individual mentioned how their company used to have annual 5 year planning meetings and publish a report...suffice to say that business doesn't even exist anymore.
I tell my students 1/2 of what they learn won't even be relevant by the time they graduate. Things are moving so fast. No more keeping up with the Jones. Today its keeping up with technology and the latest phone app....

The new reality a 90 day plan with contingencies....stayed tuned for more on this topic....

Monday, February 10, 2014

Soft or Hard

Wow, controversial title. What I really want to talk about is should HR be the Hugging department, Big data supervisors, or a little of both mashed up with a lot of filler?
I am speaking tomorrow at HR New York on the topic of HR enrichment programs, a topic I first hit on over a decade ago, but its still extremely relevant. I will argue that the key to strategic HR is by creating a condusive environment that allows folks to be engaged...Ok that's a mouthful...lets bring it down a notch.
It all started back in 2001 when I recognized folks at Leviton didn't really work in teams. they barely engaged in anything not required. So I did what I could and held a hobby week in the cafeteria. Folks found common ground, started to hang out and the rest is history. It started with a spark and ignited into something beyond my wildest dreams...We had a very strategic HR group within  3 yrs...
the argument of course is should HR be the soft department, planning and running picnics, holiday parties and a slew of programs throughout the year? What is strategic about that?
I debated this with Sue Meisinger, the former CEO of SHRM, a couple years back at a conference in Las Vegas. She thinks that creating engagement opportunities is the holy grail of Strategic HR.
My talk tomorrow will take the middle ground, sometimes you need to do things that lead to bigger and better...
Maybe Sue was right...its open for debate.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Don't Leave the Pitcher in to Long

Jeff Weiner the CEO of LinkedIn, posted recently about the most important lesson learned as a CEO. The sports analogy as a metaphor for business is so strikingly true. Every business I have worked in has been guilty of leaving someone in a critical role too long.
And I might go as far as saying I have been in roles to long too. Fortunately at Macy's and Leviton, I was moved to new and different assignments and projects regularly. Even the best pitchers have a bad outing, some go into a funk  and need to be either changed up in their role or traded. In business we are not so fortunate...we end up getting fired...there are no trades in business...
So the trick is reinventing ourselves every so often to avoid the axe. and when we do get the axe its important to take stock of our talents and put them to good use as well as adding a few new skills, like a pitcher adding a new pitch or learning to change speeds on an existing one...
For me I am working on a slider, taking a little speed off , with a slight change of direction...

Friday, January 31, 2014

New Year - New Direction

Human Capital 3.0 is evolving and going in a new direction. We are going through what all businesses go through from time to time, an inflection point. Our corporate training and coaching is taking over as our core offerings. We have always offered both as services, however we thought we would be spending most of our time in performance projects and competency modeling...
That's not the case, at least for the moment. It seems our expertise in conducting work place investigations, global management and creating better feedback in the work place is taking center stage. We are also doing a lot of coaching and mentoring, which we knew we would be spending time on. Just not as much as we actually are.
We're not complaining, on the contrary we are excited!
We also have developed some great partnerships including Improving Communications (training) and Brandemix  (branding and social media). Both are NYC based boutiques with super products and services.
Like all things, it takes time and we are starting to see the fruit of our labor.

We want to thank our Clients, friends, and partners for their continued support.