Meetings In-Person vs. Video: See You On the Zoom Thing, Suckers...

So, I did it. We had a client who asked to do a face-to-face meeting in early August, socially distanced and with masks on in a conference room.

I was expected to handle about 40% talk time/time of possession across 90 minutes. Here's what I learned.

It freaking sucked.

I'm not super alarmed about doing an in-person meeting with all the right protections as described above. We sanitized before and after, had the masks up and were socially distanced in the conference room.

But it was awful. Here's what I learned and why I would dramatically prefer a Zoom meeting to the in person, masked version:

1--It's hard to talk for long periods of time through a mask. Running a meeting with a mask is not going into a store with a mask. Talking for any period of time is hard, forced and awkward.

2--I have a big a## head. Uni-size, one size fits all masks are not made for me. If you feel any pressure on your ears, that means the mask is tight on your face and that's going to make talking difficult for any period of time.  As they said in Jaws, you're going to need a bigger boat mask.

3 - Life and conversations are hard without facial expressions. You think you can smile with your eyes? I think you look like a hostage when you do your eyes that way.

4 - Almost everything is better with a Zoom call when compared to a masked, in-person meeting. Audio is better. Visuals are better. You build better understanding. You don't feel like you're in a bad movie that ends with zombies running said meeting.

I looked forward to the face to face meeting - a chance to get back to normal. I was wrong.

I'm pro-mask (why not?), but I'm not pro-mask, live meeting.

If you can, save the in-person business meetings for when we beat this thing. For all the essential people doing it day to day, you're professionals - I salute you! 


Clickbait Reporting on HR Issues in Today's World...Sucks (The HR Famous Podcast)

Look, I get it. We live in a clickbait society designed to write a great title to any story and get everyone enraged about whatever the issue of the day is.

Politics. Masks. All issues on COVID. You can list all your other examples in this box - <insert here>.  It's clickbait all the time, Blizzard-entertainment-cover-photo and few reporters take the time to present a balanced account of the issues at hand.

But I'm an HR leader by trade, and since the clickbait has firmly landed in the world of HR, now I'm mad. 

What am I mad about? The uptick in articles on business sites citing issues in workforces at American companies. Full disclosure, if there are big issues at any company, that's on the company and people like us to get in front of and make better.

But reporters have lost their way in reporting on these issues.  Case in point, this recent Bloomberg article about employees at Blizzard entertainment not making enough to eat.

Things this article didn't do that should be required in standard reporting on workforce issues:

--They didn't share any details to build credibility on source documents provided by a source (in this case, an internal salary spreadsheet created by one or more employees)

--They didn't share how many employees they talked to for the article. I've seen articles describing big problems at a company with as little as 6 employees cited. This one doesn't even say how many employees they talked to.  The company in question (Blizzard) has 5,000 employees. Duh.

--They didn't use publicly discoverable information (Glassdoor, any salary site) to provide context related to what the limited number of employees they interviewed told them.

I could go on. If there are issues, HR is responsible for helping fix those issues and should be accountable if things aren't right.

But reporters should be accountable too. But, in today's world, too often they are not. They get three data points out of 5,000 available, don't do research, write a sexy headline and publish.

Reporters: Do Better. DO YOUR JOB.

This rant is why the latest episode of The HR Famous Podcast features me and Jessica Lee discussing the recent Bloomberg article that attempted a takedown vs Blizzard Entertainment related to pay issues - including some employees passing around a cloud spreadsheet listing salaries they make at Blizzard. Along the way,  we discuss what quality reporting looks like around this type of issue, messaging as part of damage control when a company finds itself under scrutiny, and we also look for clues related to the depth of pay issues at Blizzard on the company's Glassdoor page.

Take a listen below!

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

Listen (click this link if you don’t see the player below) and be sure to subscribe, rate, and review (Apple Podcasts) and follow (Spotify)!

SHOW HIGHLIGHTS

1:30 - Tim is gone (again) this week on another vacay! KD and Jlee talk about what they think Tim is doing on his Lake Michigan getaway. Ginger people don’t tan!

12:00 - Next topic of the day - Blizzard Entertainment, famous for making many popular video games like Call of Duty, has a situation where employees circulated a salary document internally that showed major pay disparitiesThe salary document was first reported by Bloomberg - but the gang has questions.

15:00 - Jlee praises the person who circulated the Google sheets form for being efficient. If anyone has the link to the spreadsheet, HR Famous would love to see it! KD wonders aloud how many columns are on the spreadsheet?  Are there names? The gang doubts it.

18:00 - An Activision spokesperson says that they compensate their employees fairly and gave their top performers a higher salary increase than in prior years. KD compares this issue to an episode of The Office where they have to decide who to give raises to and how.

21:00 - KD comments on the quote from the Activision spokesperson that says “a 20% increase on salaries compared to other years” was questionable language. KD and Jlee give high marks to this language that is a little clever to the untrained eye. 

25:00 - KD points out that Blizzard has thousands of employees and not everyone could be consulted for this article. He's kind of over articles that splash, but make no mention of how many employees a reporter talked to.

26:00 - What do you think Blizzard’s Glassdoor rating is? KD is a little surprised by Blizzard’s rating and thinks that their rating isn’t indicative of some of the problems this article addresses. 

29:00 - KD finds the reported Blizzard salaries on Glassdoor by job and finds that many aren’t too far off the industry average/ KD guesses the problems are in customer service and QA based on low hourly rates.

32:00 - Jlee feels for Blizzard and their HR department in these tough times for their company. KD wants reporters to tell a full story and do their job right. He encourages them to take their clickbait titles for traffic, then tell whole story.


The Unintended Consequences of Federal Unemployment in a COVID World...(Best Boss Ever Podcast)

As I write this, the Federal Unemployment Benefit of $600 per week as part of the COVID stimulus package expired on 7/31, and with the Democrats and GOP deadlocked related to a new stimulus package, President Trump stepped in with an executive order to serve as a bridge until congress could negotiate a deal in the same area.

This post isn't political. But any and all compensation issues in a pandemic are interesting to me, which is why I had one of my Robotsfavorite compensation experts - Ann Bares - join me on my BEST BOSS EVER podcast to talk about managing compensation strategy in a pandemic world.

One of the the things that came up (I asked Ann!) was the fact that a lot of companies felt that the $600 per week federal unemployment benefit was preventing capable people from re-entering the workforce. As a leader in a recruiting company, I would tell you that our clients believe this to be true.  Ann had a great response, telling me that beyond the reality of whether people with access to federal unemployment were slow to return to work, she's more concerned and focused strategically on the 2nd and 3rd order consequences/impact of any comp program (including expanded unemployment as an example of that).

That was a "mind blown" moment for me, and I ended up wondering aloud whether difficulty finding needed labor may encourage companies to invest and go "all in" in areas like automation at this point.  Which ultimately harms employment for the sector of jobs in question.

That's the thing about unintended consequences - you never see them coming.

Check out my podcast with Ann Bares below!

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

Welcome to Best Boss Ever, the podcast dedicated to helping you develop managers who build great teams. In this episode, Kris Dunn talks about the issues with Managing Compensation Strategy in a Pandemic World with Ann Bares, his favorite industry compensation expert at Altura Consulting Group and writer at Compensation Force.

Don't forget to subscribe to this podcast on Apple PodcastsSpotify or Google Play. Rate and Review if you like what you hear!

On to the show (email subscribers, click here if you don't see the podcast player)...

Show Highlights:

2:00 - Ann talks about her transition from an undergraduate in social work to the world of compensation, where she found an affinity for quantitative methods.

5:30 - Ann and KD discuss what the transition looks like for companies on compensation strategy as we move from a 10-year expansion to the recession we’re already in.

8:00 - Ann talks about unevenness of the pandemic flavor of the recession - some companies are struggling, but some are expanding and thriving.

12:00 - Ann and KD discuss the most likely changes to come for companies that are in pain from a compensation perspective - think prioritized skill set investments for reinvention, etc. Ann and KD also talk about how adjustments are being made to common components like annual increases, etc.

16:00 - Ann and KD talk about when across the board salary cuts might be reinstated in the marketplace.

17:41  - Ann and KD discuss how WFH changes the landscape of competing for talent from a compensation perspective - what's your pay market when a large % of your workforce is remote? Fluidity is a new reality.  Kris also focuses on the fact that flexibility for personal wants and needs related to WFH preferences creates a new standard for HR pros.

24:10 - Ann talks about whether companies become less aggressive in benchmarking compensation vs the market in recessions. 

27:00 - Kris and Ann talk about whether there Is a brand of company out there that thinks of recessions as a great opportunity to pick up talent. How does their strategy differ from a defensive position on comp?

34:00 - Ann and KD talk about the federal unemployment benefit as part of the stimulus plan, and whether it discourages some people from returning to work. The conversation goes beyond that surface-level topic, as Ann and Kris discuss the 2nd and 3rd order consequences/impact of any comp program. KD notes that any difficulty finding needed labor may encourage companies that are slow to invest in areas like automation to go "all in" at this point.

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

Ann Bares on LinkedIn

Compensation Force

Altura Consulting Group

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

Boss Leadership Training Series

Kinetix

The HR Capitalist

Fistful of Talent

Kris Dunn on LinkedIn

KD's Book - The 9 Faces of HR


Pandemic/Recession Notes: It's Going to Get Hard to Recruit Candidates in Stable Situations (The Best Hire Ever Podcast)...

If there's one thing I learned in the last recession that's going to help me this time around, it's this:

All things being equal, when we are deep in a recession, reasonable people in stable employment situations are less likely to jump to a new job.

I know what you're saying - you've got multiple examples where that's not the case. I hear you, but note the start of the statement above - "all things being equal."

When we're in a recession, which we are as I write this in 2020 (pandemic, even!), it's harder to get stable people to move. Good boss, decent job, seems stable - why would they take a chance on you, especially when the pandemic flavor of the recession we're in makes them even less confident your company is going to survive?

Candidates ALWAYS have imperfect information on the companies they're moving to.  Will the company make it? Is my new boss secretly a crazy person?  The unemployed are relatively easy to recruit in recessions - they need a job, and they need it quick - the employed are harder to move when times are tough.

Your best chance is really good, incredibly transparent marketing related to your open job. Think job postings and everything around it.

That's why I recently chatted with Katrina Kibben, CEO and Founder of Three Ears Media, on my podcast BEST HIRE EVER. We talked at length on the value of great job postings and marketing materials, and I had Katrina break down the elements of a job posting that generates results and talk about influencing candidates through great copy writing across all job marketing materials.  

Please subscribe, rate and review (Apple) and follow (Spotify) to get the latest Best Hire Ever podcast delivered to you.  Click here if you don't see the podcast player below.

SHOW HIGHLIGHTS:

1:05 - "What up, KD?"

1:30 - KD is a ray of sunshine as he delivers the Q2 GDP numbers and connects it to great job postings.

2:52 - A bit about the artist known as Katrina and Three Ears Media.

5:15 - KD wants to know about the the decision for Katrina to specialize and go DEEEEEEEEEEP in the job posting/job attraction space – why?

9:30 - What are 3 things people can improve on related to their job postings?  Katrina breaks down the problems with 1) content being way too long, 2) bad intakes lead to bad content (buzzwords), and 3) Guessing and winging it.  Katrina goes deep in each area and drops incredible knowledge.

16:10 - KD asks Katrina for the most challenging personas across hiring managers. A story about Missouri is part of the magic!

19:30 - KD focuses on what he views as the the pandemic/recession dilemma. You’re a hiring manager and need great talent. How do you convince people that your company will make it through and they can jump from where they are and be OK at the company you’re a part of?  Katrina acknowledges the challenge but talks about people who have great jobs who are looking for more.

22:25 - Katrina and KD talk about the isolation via the Pandemic creating time to complement career paths with talented people.

24:00 - Katrina gets technical and breaks down the "Human About Us" portion of a job posting as being the place to create confidence in your company. Don't cut and paste a press release. Talk about where you're at right now. Acknowledge the past, talk honestly about the bounce back, etc. #transparency

29:00 - KD asks Katrina how hiring managers can make candidates believe in them as a candidate. 

35:10 - Katrina and KD wrap it up with WNBA talk.

RESOURCES AND SHOW NOTES:

------------Katrina Kibben

Katrina Kibben on Linkedin

Three Ears Media

------------Kris Dunn

Kris Dunn on LinkedIn

Kinetix

The HR Capitalist

Fistful of Talent

Boss Leadership Training Series

Kris Dunn on Twitter

Kris Dunn on Instagram


Human Nature: We Hate Good Ideas From People We Don't Like (The HR Famous Podcast)...

You know it's true. When your arch enemy does good, you could applaud them. But it just feels better to bitch by questioning their motives behind the good idea they're pitching.

You know the idea I'm talking about - the one YOU had in mind. It just turns out that you weren't in a position to deliver on that idea, so your arch enemy, nemesis or competition did it before you could get to it.

I know - you really hate them. You hate them more for announcing the idea that's a part of your identity.

Case in point - this week on The HR Famous Podcast, we're talking about the Trump administration announcing moves to make it easier for people without degrees to get government jobs. That position/move sounds more progressive than arch conservative. As such, the spin from the media was predictable - It's a ploy to try and buy votes from the poor people on the fence who might vote republican.

Of course, there's one little problem - the bill is actually a good one and there's no way this bit of news impacts the election.  We don't need more degree requirements - let's help more people get into consideration for good jobs by eliminating requirements that are barriers, as well as non-predictive of success in the role. While the media loved to spin this one, it's a great example of what I described at the jump.

We love good ideas - until whoever we consider our nemesis launches the idea before we do.

Human nature 101. Check out the conversation at the podcast below starting at 22:30 and highlighted below, and subscribe while you're there!

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


Listen (click this link if you don’t see the player below) and be sure to subscribe, rate, and review (Apple Podcasts) and follow (Spotify)!
 
SHOW HIGHLIGHTS
 
10:30 - First BIG topic of the day - Apple is giving all employees paid time off to vote or volunteer at a polling place in upcoming US elections. Tim gives his employees time off to vote within reason and he commends Apple for allowing retail workers to have time off to vote.
 
14:20 - Tim Cook and Auburn University shoutout from KD!
 
15:00 - KD doesn’t think that Apple’s decision is that out of the box. He brings up the potential logistical concerns in manufacturing or other settings where scheduling could be an issue. 
 
16:00 - KD and Tim discuss the potential influence of who to vote for from company execs. Tim talks about how his Mom used to share wisdom on who to vote for and why. 
 
18:00 - Tim and Jlee think Apple should have released to the public the memo on PTO to vote for good employment marketing. 
 
20:30 - Jlee is planning on taking a PTO day for the day after the election hangover. How late are you willing to stay up to watch election results?
 
22:00 - HR Famous supports Apple CEO Tim Cook and Auburn University (at least KD does). If you’re reading this Tim, we would love to have you on the pod!
 
22:30 - Second BIG topic of the day - President Trump signed an executive order in late June ordering the federal government to revise their qualifications for jobs, in hopes to prioritize jobs skills over college degrees. Ivanka Trump is leading this initiative to help those without higher education get good federal government jobs.
 
24:30 - Tim praises the federal government for catching up to private industry and taking out unnecessary job qualifications for certain jobs. 
 
26:30 - Tim and KD worry that this news coming from the Trump administration will be discounted because it’s coming from President Trump and both of them think it’s a pretty progressive move. 
 
31:00 - Tim talks about how he used to require all of his recruiters to have a college degree and the determination it shows to finish a degree. He has changed his requirements since and he’s seen some of his best recruiters come in without a degree. 
 
33:20 - Tim asks Jlee and KD what percentage of jobs they think actually require a degree. What do you think?
 
36:50 - One final War Eagle and Tim Cook shoutout!
 

 


How Did You Grow Up? I See My Parents In Things I Do at Work Every Day (The Best Hire Ever Podcast)

At my desk in my home office, I have two things to remind me where I came from:

--A weathered work thermos that was used by my dad in his career as a Telecom Lineman, and JleeBHE 

--A desk bell used by my Mom in her long career as a 1st grade school teacher.

Those items are on my desk to remind me of how much influence both had on me. Not that I need them for that, because I see my parents (RIP Kent and Deanna) in things I do every day of my career. While I'm my own person, there's no doubt that there are tens, if not hundreds, of little influences from them related to how I communicate, react to wins, deal with losses and otherwise navigate through the workday.

I know I'm not alone in this, which is why I asked Jessica Lee of Marriott International to join me on the Best Hire Ever Podcast to talk about the influence of her parents on her career.

Jessica grew up in an immigrant household in Seattle and California - her parents were immigrants from South Korea. It was great to hear all the experiences that Jessica can remember and understands the impact that upbringing had on her life and career - and how she's trying to pass some of it on to her children.

Take a listen below and hit me in the comments or with an email to tell me how you see your parents in you every day you're on the job.

I bet they gave you great stuff. 

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

Please subscribe, rate and review (Apple) and follow (Spotify) to get the latest delivered to you.

 

SHOW HIGHLIGHTS:

2:00 - Is it Jessica, JLee or JL?  Not Jess or Jessie, BTW.

3:00 - KD talks about the pressure for college admissions, first jobs, etc. on today's young workers. KD points out that Jessica has done great things, but did not have a master plan at 22 or 23 years old. JLee agrees and talks about going on a date in DC with a guy who wanted to know her 5-year plan.

6:15 - Jessica describes growing up in a household with immigrant parents from South Korea. She talks about being a 1.5 or 2nd generation American. Jlee also talks about her first memories related to work and her parents.

8:35 - KD asks Jessica about her parents' desire to "create something" and whether they communicated that vision. JLee talks about the contrast between her parents' approach and her own relationship with her children.  

10:45 - Jlee talks about her siblings, their achievements from a career perspective and her role as the youngest in a household with Korean heritage.

14:23 - JLee talks about what she sees in herself,  related to work, based on her memories of being raised by immigrant parents. JLee recalls that, while expectations were high, there was an expectation/reality that they had to figure things out on their own, which is a cornerstone of who she is professionally. 

17:45 - KD challenges JLee to find a single trait to attribute to one of her parents and she comes up with a great one - her mother's attention to detail and how everything communicates something specific to the outside world - appearance, communication, running a meeting, etc.

23:40 - Jessica talks about the relationship of how she was raised to how she's trying to raise her own kids. She talks about the positive impact of having no safety net on her and her husband and struggling with how much her kids should be forced to struggle. JLee also talks about her parents' expectation of a professional career vs how she wants to influence her kids related to career choice.  KD asks about what her 2nd generation Korean peers are doing related to safety nets for their children.

30:00 - Jessica talks about how mental illness in her family (peaking in her high school years) also influenced how she was raised and how she views the world, as well as the impact of losing her father when she was 20. All of it combined to provide her with drive and initiative, as well as her worldview. KD asks JLee if the mental illness didn't exist if she would still have the same drive from a career perspective.

35:00 - JLee shares info from her executive coaching sessions.  SCOOP!  KD and JLee talk about how having a limited safety net builds self-awareness and urgency.

39:15 - KD is back to JLee as a parent! How is she going to weave all of it together - background, experiences and more - to get the best possible outcome for her kids?  JLee talks about the balance between "stacking the deck" vs forcing them to bootstrap in life.

RESOURCES AND SHOW NOTES:

------------Jessica Lee

Jessica Lee

The HR Famous Podcast

------------Kris Dunn

Kris Dunn on LinkedIn

Kinetix

The HR Capitalist

Fistful of Talent

Boss Leadership Training Series

Kris Dunn on Twitter

Kris Dunn on Instagram


RTW: It's Like the Video Rental Scene in "I Am Legend"...

I'm not going to lie. I went back to my office a couple of weeks ago to pick some stuff up. It was f##king weird.

First, note that I work for a recruiting company where all associates can work from home, and our company offices are in Atlanta, which has been a bit of a hotbed with Surge 1B, 2 or whatever the CDC is calling it. We don't have to have Bevi_unitpeople in the office, so for right now, you'll generally find 1, 2 or yes, 0 people in the office on a given day.

The day I showed up (my first time since March), I knew it was going to be weird when there were only 20 cars in the parking lot on a Tuesday, for a building that has 100,000 square feet of office space. Mmmm, here we go.

I went up to the 6th floor, where our offices are. Keyed in, and presto - I'm the only one there. Lights off. Small and dim gray light coming in the windows on an overcast day. Wasn't The Walking Dead filmed in Atlanta? I have a new location for them to shoot from.

I needed some office things, so I roamed around. Lots of choice. I tried to remember who sat where to ensure I wasn't stealing from my teammates in a way that would cause issues.

But it's a pandemic, right? What was I worried about? I grabbed the chair that best suited my needs.

I got my stuff and got the hell out, a bit spooked at the lack of light and the isolation. I'd seen it before on the weekend, but that just meant I'm a workhorse at that time. Now it means we don't know when and if normal office space activity is going to resume.

As I got ready to leave, I went to check and see if there was a soda in the fridge for the road. I turned the corner, and there it was. The flavored water machine we had delivered in mid-March (do the math) as a new feature for the employees in the office.

As I tested the new flavors, I decided that if I come back before the office is officially open, I'm going to bring some friends. Not a firearm or a personal security guard - no, I'm going to bring some mannequins like Will Smith had set up in the video store in I Am Legend (click the link for video). 

After all, flavored water means nothing if I can't bitch that we're out of Peach Mango to someone.

KD out.


Choosing Members of your Leadership Team as an Executive To Drive Culture (Best Boss Ever Podcast)..

Congrats my friend - you made it. You're an executive, and whether than means you're a C-level, SVP, VP, whatever - you're now expected to be strategic.

There's a lot of areas to think about strategy when you're a leader. Here's one you don't think about a lot - how you build your leadership team of direct reports (all who manage others) related to the type of manager of people they are.

In a past episode of Best Boss Ever, I reached out to my good friend and BOSS Leadership facilitator Dawn Burke and we identified and talked about "6 Manager of People Brands" including the Doer & Individual Contributor, The Friend/Pushover, The Control Freak/Authoritarian, Trend Spotter/Reader of the Best Seller, Performance Based Driver, and The Career Agent.

Which begs a question - if you're an executive building out your team of direct reports - all who manage others - which one of these "6 Manager of People Brands" do you want on your team?  That's why I had Dawn back on to discuss, with a podcast on this topic below!

Whether you're a new executive or someone with 20 years in the seat, there's something in this podcast for you - check out the rundown below and think proactively about what you need more of on your leadership team. Spoiler alert - you probably need a mix related to the types of leaders you have on your leadership team.

The choices you make in this area direct impacts the culture you're building!  Enjoy the pod and be sure to subscribe!

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

Welcome to Best Boss Ever, the podcast dedicated to helping you develop managers who build great teams. In this episode, Kris Dunn talks about the power of Choosing Members of Your Leadership Team To Drive Culture with Dawn Burke, master facilitator at the BOSS Leadership Training Series.

Don't forget to subscribe to this podcast on Apple PodcastsSpotify or Google Play. Rate and Review if you like what you hear!

On to the show (email subscribers, click here if you don't see the podcast player)...

 

Show Highlights:

4:40 - KD provides a quick rundown of the concept of manager brand and the 6 manager brands we covered in the episode 2 of Best Boss Ever

11:55 - Dawn and KD take the types of early career people managers – Doer & Individual Contributor, The Friend/Pushover, The Control Freak/Authoritarian - and rank which ones they would prioritize as a part of their team as an executive.

25:00 - Dawn and KD discuss the types of more established managers – Trend Spotter/Reader of the Best Seller, Performance Based Driver, and The Career Agent - including dialog on whether habits can change once they’ve been established in experienced managers.  Dawn and KD rank which types of senior managers they would prioritize as a part of their team as an executive.

31:35 - KD and Dawn discuss their ideal manager portfolios across a team of 5 managers of people managing 60 people. What's the right mix of the different types of people managers for a department of that size?

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

Dawn Burke on LinkedIn

Dawn Burke HR

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

Boss Leadership Training Series

Kinetix

The HR Capitalist

Fistful of Talent

Kris Dunn on LinkedIn

KD's Book - The 9 Faces of HR


Career Expectations: Comparison Is The Thief of Joy (And Doesn't Matter if You're Good)

Last week I put up a post talking about the fact there's nothing wrong with young talent doing a call center role for a good company early in their career, but I talked a bit in that post that good to great talent wouldn't be in that role for 3+ years - they'd promote within the call center or elsewhere in the company. 

Good talent goes up. The cream rises to the top.

There's just one problem with that. The world we live in - from the escalating college admissions process, capital campaigns at colleges, media, social media, etc - has robbed us of perspective.  Young grads are automatically nervous related to their slotting in the job market.

That's why I wanted to have a guided conversation on one of my podcasts - The HR Famous Podcast - on how career expectations for new grads have escalated to the point where it's not healthy, and from a talent perspective the current narratives aren't true.

Take a listen to the podcast below as I talk with Tim Sackett and Jessica Lee about these expectations and our view of them. We also have Cameron Sackett, Tim's son, on as a new grad to talk about how he's feeling attempting a job search in a COVID world. While the timing sucks, I'm a HUGE believer that Cam will be successful regardless of the level of job he lands in the coming weeks/months.  Look him up on LinkedIn if you need a young Marketing pro who can do great things.

Great talent ALWAYS goes up if it performs like it should. I'm pissed at a world that causes kids like Cam to be stressed about their careers, but the stress would likely have been there for a lot of kids even if COVID wasn't a factor. It's a mind#### that the world has forced on them.

Comparison is the thief of joy. Great talent goes up.

-----------

In episode 24 of The HR Famous Podcast, long-time HR leaders (and friends) Tim Sackett, Kris Dunn and Jessica Lee are back to discuss the escalation of career expectations for college students (as well as the musical Hamilton and Glassdoor/Indeed changes). 

Listen (click this link if you don’t see the player) and be sure to subscribe, rate, and review (Apple Podcasts) and follow (Spotify)!

SHOW HIGHLIGHTS

29:00 - KD discusses his worries about post-grad jobs in a COVID and post-COVID world. He thinks we’re setting difficult expectations for high performing college students who are entering the job force. JLee worries that colleges are just using student’s successes and expectations to get the best crop of incoming students. 

32:45 - Tim talks about his blog post he wrote about Cam’s college admissions experience and how the college admission system is screwed up. KD is a big fan of the comments on the blog post and still subscribes to them 4 years later. 

35:30 - KD asks Cam about how he remembers his college admissions experience and the frustrations he felt during this time. 

37:30 - KD asks JLee about her experience going through college as a child of immigrant parents. She discusses the high expectations that her parents had for her, and how she’s going to change and adapt those expectations for her children. 

40:00 - JLee discusses her rebellious streak as a young adult and how she did well enough to get by and still rise to the top of her field. 

41:30 - HR Famous thinks the cream always rises to the top!

44:00 - KD posted a blog post on the HR Capitalist this week about a woman who reached out to him who had worked at the same call center for four years. He thinks that regardless of where anyone starts, the best will always rise and reach where they want to be. 

47:00 - Cam talks about what he thinks about taking a call center job and his hesitations. He says that he would be more willing to take a customer service entry level position if he’s joining a company that has great upward mobility and career mentoring. 

48:45 - The HR Famous crew gives their last words of advice to Cam on the job search. 


HR TROLLS: Thinking Unemployment on Steroids Means You Have a Compensation Problem...

Short post today, but an important one. I belong to multiple online groups covering HR on a variety of platforms - you know the type - people can post questions on problems they're having in their HR shops and get help, advice and recommendations from their peers.

On one of the big forums on Facebook, a HR Director posted about problems she was having recruiting for the Distribution Center she supported, and reported that she believed that part of the issue was Trollthat many candidates who would normally be under consideration were recipients of the $600 weekly employment benefit that's part of the COVID stimulus program. The theory, which many of you know, goes like this - once a potential candidate adds up the state and federal unemployment and is earning the equivalent of 40-55K annualized (depends on your state benefit level), it's hard to get them to come back to a $15-20 an hour job.

That's more than a theory, that's likely reality in many cases.

So our friendly HR Director asks for guidance, and I'd say 20% of the responses went something like this:

"You should look in the mirror and pay a living wage."

There were different versions of that, but they all shared a common belief. The problem wasn't the incentive, it was the company.

What planet did I wake up on as I navigate the 5th month of the COVID experience? Mind you, this wasn't a random message board, it was a members only HR forum. You know, HR people. 

It's a tone deaf, light form of shaming that we've become all too used to in the cancel culture we live in.  How dare you not pay your employees enough to incent them to come back from a historically rich form of government benefit designed to keep the economy going in a pandemic?

Man, those shaming style commenters in a HR forum. Talk about not understanding the business as a limiting factor to HR success.

I'm still a fan of what the US government did. They moved fast, and while it wasn't perfect, the stimulus did what it was supposed to do.

But artificially propped up comp can't last forever, and while I write this it's unclear what type of Federal unemployment benefit will emerge in August after the $600 benefit expires at the end of July. It's likely to be significantly less. There's likely to be pain as a result of the benefit being reduced, and I don't take that lightly.

HR trolls suck. The world has enough trolls - our profession doesn't need our own version.