Here's A Free Change/Innovation Exercise to Use With Your Managers

I've been working on a new training program for managers of people at Kinetix - on Change Management.  It's part of the BOSS Training series.

Change Management is a pretty hard topic on which to keep managers engaged.  So instead of making it incredibly theoretical, we're taking a page from the software development industry and talking about Change Agile - bringing Agile principles to your change efforts.

What does that mean? Well, the first thing it means is that you don't get to tell people what to do related to the change that needs to occur.  Change Agile is about managers engaging their teams on a team vision, project or perhaps just something that's broken - bringing their teams into the idea process to unlock the innovative powers of a team.  After an idea is selected, agile suggests that you have to run tests that are as small as possible to make sure the idea you selected actually works before layering too much complexity into your solution.

Here's a free exercise from the training. This one's from a tour of traditional change management theories including Kotter, The Rogers Adoption Curve, the ADKAR model and the Satir model. Mix all those theories together and you can start to make great assumptions about why some people pick up on the change being presented quickly, as well as why others are happy to stay in the shadows. 

You can run the exercise below referencing a technology change at your company (which almost everyone has had, right?) or use change that is very specific to your company - your products, services, etc.

Feel free to use this one - and let us know if you want to talk about what we do with the BOSS training series for managers.

 Change agile exercise

 


How To Show Creatives In Your Workforce That Planning/Communication Is Necessary...

For non-creatives, managing creatives can be tricky business.

I mean, really - you're not creative and you're going to try and tell them how they should run their creative desk?  How dare you!

My experience is that creatives, while organized in their own mind, often don't see a gap related to how others view them and the services they provide.  Creatives are a valuable, rare commodity, so many managers will avoid engaging them to deliver services in a way that the team/company/client can more easily understand - out of fear of losing the resource.

A lot of that gap comes down to planning and/or communication.  What can I expect, when can I expect it?  Many who rely on creative services treat it as a mystical resource.  

Creativity takes time.  Creativity can't be rushed.  It will be done when it's done, but you want high quality, right?

All of which is true.  However, I recently ran across this example of how one creative mind works when it comes to planning and organization.  take a look at the spreadsheet below - it's a planning doc from Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling.  Take a look at the picture (email subscribers may have to click through to view, and all can click on the picture below to blow it up) and we'll talk about it after the jump.

Jk-rowlings-phoenix-plot-outline_1457414808

More on this doc from Open Culture:

At the height of the Harry Potter novels' popularity, I asked a number of people why those books in particular enjoyed such a devoted readership. Everyone gave almost the same answer: that author J.K. Rowling "tells a good story." The response at once clarified everything and nothing; of course a "good story" can draw a large, enthusiastic (and, at that time, impatient) readership, but what does it take to actually tell a good story? People have probably made more money attempting, questionably, to pin down, define, and teach the best practices of storytelling, but at the top of this post, we have a revealing scrap of Rowling's own process. And I do, almost literally, mean a scrap: this piece of lined paper contains part of the handwritten plot spreadsheet she used to write the fifth Harry Potter novel, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.

One of the most economically successful creatives (in this case, an author) relies on a spreadsheet to plan and execute story arcs and plots.

A lot of your creatives don't plan like this.  I think it's worth sharing to show the level of detail one famous creative mind includes when planning work product.

In addition, the doc serves to make an additional point.  If J.K. Rowling goes to this extreme to keep her own head straight, might more planning and communication from your creatives to those who are waiting for creative product from make sense within your company and on your team?

It's one thing to have it in your head.  To truly reach the highest level of creative service inside a company, your creatives need to be organized - and then tell the world what their work funnel looks like and when they can expect delivery.   

 


You People Who Get Groggy In Meetings Amaze Me...

If you're like me, when you see a person in a meeting start to redline out into something resembling sleep, you're amazed.

I know, I know.  There are sleep disorders that cause people to be unable to stay awake in a meeting or any another work situation that involves someone talking for intermediate to long periods of time.

But my fascination remains.  How do people go to sleep in meetings when their boss is talking - or their boss's boss is talking?

In today's world, we point to sleeping disorders as the reason.  We used to call it natural selection, and the level to which someone was penalized for falling asleep in a work situation was directly and positively correlated with how much they contributed to the business:

Strong contributor nodding off in meeting:  We just make fun of them behind their back.

Weak contributor nodding off in meeting: "Did you see your boy Jim in the REM stage? I'm going to let you take care of that."

Translation: If Jim can't get his s**t together, I don't want to see him in meetings, which means he might not be in the company.

I've been given a natural gift.  I don't look groggy in work meetings, even when I haven't slept in 24 hours and I'm in a brain funk that rivals the deep fog of the SF bay area.  Of course, that doesn't mean I've heard a damn thing you've said in that meeting, only that I have the ability to not offend those in charge/presenting.  I also can't fall asleep on airplanes.  Another minus side related to sleep and me - I've got an internal clock that wakes me up at the time I've thought about getting up - even if I don't have to on a weekend, etc.

These thoughts about work sleep brought to you courtesy of the Twitter moment below, which wonders aloud how people in movies fall asleep automatically, which is followed by people talking about sleep patterns on nights before they have to go the airport, etc.  Funny stuff, worth 3 minutes to flip through the whole thing.

Work and sleep are a weird combination.  Email subscribers click through if you don't see the Twitter moment below.


What Is Your Pettiest Reason For Being Lukewarm On A Candidate?

I'm asking. You know you have some type of petty thing - that's caused you to rank a candidate lower than they should have been.

I'm not talking about bias with a capital "B".  I'm talking about bias with a smaller than lower case "b".   It's so petty that the "b" in bias is actual two font sizes smaller than the rest of the word.  

Mine?  I have a hard time with candidates who take me out of my normal messaging environment.  Namely, the ability to use iMessage across different devices and communicate with team members is a preference - not a necessity.  I've hired people that I can't message on the iMessage platform before, and will in the future.  Best candidate wins. 

But when I pick up my phone to SMS a candidate rather than iMessage from my mac, I need to remind myself best candidate wins.  Twice.

What's your pettiest reason for being lukewarm on a candidate?  Hit me in the comments, or message me.  Unless you're not IOS - if that's the case, definitely hit me in the comments.


VIDEO HANGOUT THURSDAY - The Psychology of Recruitment: Brain Hacking to Get Agreement...

If you’re a client or follower of Jobvite, you know the Recruiter Nation Live series.  It started with the Recruiter Nation Live Conference in San Francisco last June, and continued with the Recruiter Nation Live Roadshow that brought real recruiter talk to 9 cities in North America over the last three months of 2017. 
 
The feedback was great – you loved it, so we’re back with the latest in the series – the Recruiter Nation Live Hangout Series, hosted by Fistful of Talent and me.  Once a month, FOT will host a live Hangout designed to keep the conversation among HR pros and recruiters going – focused on things you can use, like the best-kept secrets of today’s smartest and most efficient recruiters, Jedi-mind tricks proven to make you more persuasive/get great candidate response and strategies to hold your hiring managers accountable for their choices–so everyone wins.

 ----------------------------------------------

Our next hangout is at 1pm ET on January 25th (Thursday!).  It's an informal thing - we fire up the video and a few slides (emphasis on "few") and run through a few things in 20-25 minutes...

Topic - GETTING READY FOR THE JANUARY 2018 HIRING RUSH!! (WITH FOTers DAWN BURKE AND KRIS DUNN)

REGISTER FOR THE HANGOUT BY CLICKING THIS LINK!!!

TOPICS/THE GOOD STUFF - 

The Psychology of Recruitment: Brain Hacking to Get Agreement
 
While technology continues to have greater importance in our day-to-day lives and jobs, knowing the things that make us uniquely human is just as critical. How you use social psychology, and our decision biases to help connect, engage and influence a job candidates is where you can make a huge difference. 

Join Paul Hebert and Dawn Burke of FOT for this 25 minute video hangout as they riff on:

1--How you can use aversion to your advantage - even when the person doesn't have a job to lose.

2--Understanding how getting small commitments can drive even bigger ones.

3--Leveraging "framing" when you talk to candidates to help you lock in salary and other things you might normally have difficulty discussing with candidates


It will be fun and fast. You'll want to join us because it will turn your recruiting game up to 11.  Or if it's already an 11, it will turn it up to 12.

(Hint - one of the weirdest influence techniques is included in this session. Listen in and Paul will explain it.)

REGISTER FOR THE HANGOUT BY CLICKING THIS LINK!!! 


When Your Boss Acts Like a Dinosaur and You Just Serve Up The Brontosaurus...

In case you missed it, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is the latest leader VP level FTE of the free world to espouse the benefits of having his underlings print stuff out for him to chew on.  Damn kids!  Where's my digital information printed out on something I can take notes on?  Or use to throw away my gum?  BTW, I'm almost out of Big Red - send the intern to the store. 

OK, let's look at the quote and analyze it after the jump.  More from Newsweek:

"Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has said that he prints out President Donald Trump's tweets and uses them to inform decision-making on foreign policy. Tillerson

The Texan was speaking to his predecessor Condeleezza Rice at a Stanford University event on Wednesday, at which he said the president is "world-class at social media," on which he reaches millions of people via Twitter, Instagram and Facebook with messages that sometimes even his own team remain unaware of. 

"The challenge is getting caught up because I don't even have a Twitter account that I can follow what he is tweeting, so my staff usually has to print his tweets out and hand them to me," Tillerson told Rice."

Random and at times, astute thoughts on this:

1.  Condi is pressing her tongue against her teeth - or whatever method she uses - not to laugh out loud at Tillerson thinking he's being cool with this response.

2.  It's hard when you have an otherwise talented boss ask you for something stupid.  Sometimes the caveman just wants to eat, and it's easier to serve him the Brontosaurus than walk him through the issues.

3.  There would be A LOT MORE DINOSAURS in the world receiving this level of service.  But most of us saw administrative assistants go away in the 1990s, never to return.  So while this type of story is rare, it would be more common had the great OD plague of the 1990 not wiped 80% of the admins from the face of the earth.

4.  Tillerson has a legitimate security concern in not having a twitter account.  But I'm pretty sure that there's an analyst at the State Department that can set up autoforwarding to his smart phone via email or even a secure app - let's name it Sexy Rexy - and have it pop the minute Trump tweets.

5.  And yes, someone close to Tillerson has to tell him how bad this makes him look and help him at least have the appearance of looking digital.

It's one thing to have Marge print out the tweets.  It's another thing to tell the world you're on top of twitter and use it for policy by - wait for it - printing stuff from "The Twitter Thing" out.

 

 


How to Involve Employees In Goal Setting - Even If You're 99% Sure Some of Their Ideas Will Suck....

I'm up over at Saba Software talking about goal setting - something that should be on everyone's mind at the start of the year, right?

You must include your direct reports in the goal setting process. I know – sometimes their ideas aren’t great. It’s OK – I'm going to show you how to involve the direct report in the goal setting process without being held hostage by bad ideas about goals. You can include them and maintain control of the process.

The more you can show they had input, the more you win by increased engagement towards the goals. Take a look at this episode of TalentTalks at Saba Software to learn more/how.

Click here to see my video for a 3-step process to including your employees in goal setting - in risk-free, no BS way.

Goal setting

VENDORSPLAINING: Here's a Tone-Deaf Business Conversation...

If you're like me in the world of HR, you get hit by a lot of vendors.  Vendors you currently use get priority to your time.  That's what makes this conversation so damn fun.

The Scene: I'm on a call with an Account Manager for a CRM we use.  It should be noted that the company I work for (as well as serve as a partner and co-owner) is a RECRUITING COMPANY - Kinetix!  Stay tuned for why that is relevant.

Me: So Tom, thanks for the call today and the rundown of the opportunities you see for us to get the most out of your system.  When it comes to the next step, I'm currently in the process of hiring for the vacant role I described, so it Pleasemakes sense not to do any follow up until that person is in the seat, which I think will be early February.

Tom: That sounds great.  Keep in mind that if you need a person with a deep understanding of our CRM, we have some recruiting partners who can help you out.  Just let me know if you need that introduction.

<awkward silence. Bubble over my head would be captioned, "What the #@**!">

Me: Tom, you realize we are a recruiting company, right?  I just wanted to check on your understanding of that since I swore you just offered to put me in touch with an external recruiter.  That sounds like you don't have a lot of confidence in the mission of our company.

Tom: Um. Well. Um. Er.  You know, I had a momentary lapse there. Um. Well. Um. Er...

Me: OK, that's interesting.

<nervous laughter from other CRM reps on call. Secretly they are cheering the combative spirit displayed.  Evident they are not worried about hurting Tom's feelings - or mine, for that matter>

<call goes on - we pick up the call 4 minutes later>

Tom: OK Kris, we'll plan on following up with you late in the first week of February to see if you've got the new person aboard.

Me: That sounds great, Tom.  By the way, if you need a reliable CRM to place that reminder, I know a good one.  Not sure if you've heard of it, it's called Microsoft Outlook.

<more nervous laughter and virtual backslapping.  Apparently, we are all on the same team. That team's name is #ShameOnTom>

--Vendorsplaining!  I'll be here all week - don't forget to tip your server, and please, try the veal.

And yeah, Kinetix! is a vendor as well.  Do business with us and I'll never tell you where you can find a good <insert your company's product or service> even though that's your business!!

 


What To Do If Your Company Doesn't Give MLK as an Official Holiday - But You Think You Should...

Martin Luther King Jr. Day (MLK) is a holiday with increasing importance in our world.  But most companies don't provide this as an official holiday.  Here's the stats I could find via Bloomberg:

"Most U.S. workers won’t get Monday off for Martin Luther King Jr. Day.  A study by Bloomberg BNA found 37 percent of employees will get a paid day off, similar to the 35 percent that will be off on Presidents Day in February.

The survey found that as a paid day off, Martin Luther King Jr. Day might have plateaued. Those receiving it as a paid holiday have hovered between 30 percent and 37 percent the past five years.Manufacturers are least likely to provide it as a day off, with 10 percent offering it.

Non-federal holidays such as the Friday after Thanksgiving are more common days off. About seven in 10 employees receive that as a holiday, and 46 percent are off Christmas Eve." Mlk

MLK presents an interesting quandary for employers.  If you don't have it, employees and candidates are increasing expecting it as a holiday, and MLK - rightly or wrongly - can be used as a proxy for commitment to diversity by vocal, mobilized special interest group and employees alike.  I'm not saying you're not committed to diversity if you don't provide MLK as an official day. I'm saying it could be used against you, and all of us are smart to think about the meaning and what we should do if we don't provide it.

Let's say you've determined you want to provide MLK Day as a holiday, but you want to stay net even related to the total number of days you provide.  Here's the checklist I go down...

1--It's not enough to say people can used general PTO or floating holidays to cover it.  If you want the optics and meaning  that providing MLK day off provides, it needs to be an official holiday.

2--If you have floating holidays or general PTO banked time, you could designate MLK as an official holiday and reduce that banked time by one day. 

3--Next, you could look at your existing holidaysI rank order them like this:

Untouchable - Christmas (birth of Jesus), 4th of July (birth of our country), Memorial Day (remembering those who served and gave their lives)

Less meaningful but still untouchable - Christmas Eve (wow - try it - I wish you luck) New Year's Day (just try and take that one), Thanksgiving (our right to remember Omish-like founders and eat large amounts), Labor Day (celebrating workers - try that one)

One you could trade out, but there would be hell to pay - Day after Thanksgiving (expected if you've already given it - hello entitlement!!)

Trade this one or one like it out for MLK in 2019 - President's Day, Columbus Day, etc.  (Let's face it, the presidents are on money, and damn, Columbus didn't even really discover America, right?)

If you want to give MLK as a holiday but want to stay even related to paid time off, this is your playbook.  1) Trade out President's Day or Columbus Day if have it.  2) If you have floating holidays or generalized PTO, reduce by one day and designate MLK as official in exchange. 3) Go get Friday after Thanksgiving or (winces) Christmas Eve to trade for MLK.

Good luck if you're seeking to add MLK and stay neutral related to time off.  I hope your Change Management goes well.

 

 

 

 


5 Ways Using Adobe Document Cloud Makes Your HR Function Look Best in Breed

If there’s one thing we know, it’s that negative stereotypes about HR Pros are common.  You know them because you live them:

--HR’s great at making rules

--HR’s great at saying “no”

--HR usually trails other functional areas in evolving with the times.

Am I talking about you? Probably not – if you’re doing things like reading blogs, looking for industry news via social and seeking best practices, odds are you’re in the top quartile of our profession related to looking progressive and staying current.

But that doesn’t mean others don’t judge you by the stereotypes.  Appearances matter, and outsiders routinely assume that you are part of sleepy portion of the HR nation.

That’s why you need a plan to separate you from the HR masses. I talk a lot about ways to do this at the HR Capitalist – everything from enhancing your LinkedIn profile to the projects you work on (and how you promote those to the world) impacts how others see you.

I’m here today with a few simple recommendations that can probably do as much – if not more – as anything to drive others to view you as a progressive, forward-thinking “he/she gets it” HR leader.

You should use Adobe Sign as part of your HR practice and infrastructure

For the uninitiated, Adobe Sign is the world`s most trusted e-signature solution, providing the easiest signing experience, effortless mobility, and unsurpassed security. 

Regardless of where you are in the HR Tech continuum, many of you know you’re still stuck in a sea of paper documents. Upgrading any part of your HR Tech stack doesn’t mean you automatically eliminate paper. Ironically, one of the biggest impacts you can have on how your HR practice is viewed is to change your signature gathering game.

That’s where the Adobe Sign solution starts to make a lot of sense.  Here’s 5 Ways Using Adobe Document Cloud Makes Your HR Function Look Best in Breed:

1.    Make all your forms mobile. This just in – most of the people you need signatures from are reading your request for a signature from a mobile device.  Imagine the power of creating a form using Adobe Acrobat and having the ability to easily execute a signature right from a mobile device.  Advantage: you and your HR practice.

2.    Don’t send paper to candidates. First impressions matter, and many of us in HR fail this initial test with candidates. We have career sites that allow candidates to apply for jobs digitally, but eventually we have this thing called “definition of an applicant.” That’s a fancy way of saying that we’re going to email you a document with a formal application and background authorization forms to make it official. The offer letter faces the same problem.  We typically ask candidates to print those out, sign, scan and return.  Feels like 1999, and I’m not talking about the cool Prince song. Adobe Sign can fast forward your HR practice to today – or tomorrow. 

3.    Eliminate the new hire paperwork package that looks like it came from a mortgage provider. You know the drill – your new employees are excited about working for your company, then you hit them with 300 pages of new hire paperwork and make them sign 30 times on their first day. Imagine the perception and reaction if you gave them an iPad and had that entire package available digitally. You’ll be a hero.

4.    Get legally important training executed and acknowledged without the usual cattle call. Every HR Pro has a recurring need to get company-wide items like safety and harassment training completed. A few of us have clunky LMS systems to help them navigate this cattle call, but most of us are left with email blasts and pleas for people to sign acknowledgments to help us close the project. Adobe Sign can help you spend 10% of the time you currently do on these time-intensive projects.

5.    Make HR service immediate by converting paper forms to Adobe Sign and delivering via mobile. I get it, you put all your forms up on your Intranet. Too bad people just want to call you to ask where to find the form.  If you email them a link to that Intranet form, you’re still relying on them to print and return it to you. If you use Adobe Sign, you send them a form they execute as soon as they open your email.  Which way sounds smarter?

For those of you that feel like you’re behind on HR technology, I have great news. By onboarding products like Adobe Sign and Adobe Acrobat and doing a light project to make your forms and signatures digital in nature, you can leapfrog your peers and competitors who have spent significant money on recruiting, performance management systems and other forms of advanced HR tech.

Turns out, making it easy to do business with your HR practice on core paperwork via Adobe Document Cloud has the biggest ROI available in HR Tech.

This post was brought to you in partnership with Adobe Document Cloud.