Month: March 2013

My HR thinkers Twitter List


Yesterday I took the liberty to reorganize the way I follow and read some of the best HR blogs and thinkers around the topics of Human Resources on the web. Thing is that I relied a lot on Google Reader to assemble the RSS feeds of the various blogs that I found interesting. The recent decision to discontinue this service came as a really unwelcome surprise to me, so I tried to understand a way on how to make sure I wasn’t loosing touch with my favorite readings. As a matter of fact I started considering what the best way to get this done. As I use Flipboard to read most of my online content on my iPad, I browsed a bit, until I found that probably the best thing to do was to create a List on Twitter, then include that as a separate subscription in Flipboard. But, as I was doing this anyway, the question was why not sharing this small piece of work? That is why I have created and made public …

Need number 3: Retain your people


Retaining your existing employee is the best cost effective strategy for improving your HR performances. Yet, even if Retention has always been a mantra for many HR executives for years now, when it comes to showing up results, not many companies have been really capable to demonstrate how good they are at retaining people. If the logic of retention is always valid. Keeping a person is more efficient than having to hire and retrain a new recruit. Easy. However, getting to a point where there is 100% retention is not really feasible, and probably not even desirable. Modern companies need to carefully balance the efficiencies gained by retaining their people and the need for new fresh ideas that external recruits can bring. Whom to retain? So the key challenge for a people manager is: whom to retain? If your first answer is “Top Talents”, please go back to article one of this series and then try again. Why? Simple: whatever category of people you associate to the word “talent”, this is the most difficult portion …

Need number 2: Develop people internally


So, we’ve seen that instead of choosing the best talent to get into your organization, it is probably wiser to focus on a good candidate. One of the goal is to make sure the candidate you have chosen can become “productive” as soon as possible in your organisation. Which is why your people development processes play a key role in making sure your HR function really supports your organisation business needs. From Training to Development. In many organisations Learning & Development has always been the last department of HR. Last to be formed, last to get a budget, last to be part of the HR strategy of an organisation. To a certain extent, in many organisations the recent wave of “talent” management has at least had the capability of revising the role that learning plays in the development of people. But it is not enough. First of all, in many companies we are not even able to talk about learning, as the focus is purely on training activities. What is the difference between the two …

Need number 1: Hire Good Candidates (and get them onboard fast)


So, now that you know you should not be using the word “Talent” anymore, how do we approach the quest for the “best candidate” for that vacancy you have in your organisation? Stop looking for the Best candidate. Well, first of all by avoiding to look for the “best” candidate. It does not exist. For the very simple reason that finding a person that perfectly fits a) a job description, b) the unexpressed desires of its managers, c) the expectations of HR and d) the wished on any further involved stakeholder, simply does not exist. Yet, in this quest for “talent”, HR organisations have very often delivered a very negative service to the business, based on the (wrong) assumption that “even if we take a bit more time, we’ll get the best candidate, so that it will start delivering faster“. So what we have observed is an increase in the time-to-fill benchmark, both in the US and in Europe. Even if you just take the 2011 Linkedin Survey Results, data shows that there is an …

Getting rid of the word “Talent” – A Six Post Series on People Management


(This post was modified on March 11th to accomodate links to other post in the series). In the world of Human Resources there are few words to which I have become really allergic. One of them is for sure talent. Why? For a very simple reason: it is usually used as a shortcut, to justify or cover facts that are not always fully understood. This way Talent has been constantly used instead of more “proper” words. Sometime it identifies a set of skills that certain specific have… so why not simply call them competencies? In other cases it is used to identify group of employees that are “gifted” with the prospective of achieving great results in their work. It is therefore a way to refer to People, and btw wasn’t this why they were once defined High Potentials? Sometime the word is used to identify a group of people that share, instead, a common set of competencies, and that are organized into pools to enable succession within the organisation. Yet again I don’t see the …

Are you ready for Generation Z?


Ok, you may wonder why we should already start thinking about the Z Generation, when we have not yet learnt to cope with Generation Y. I believe the answer is easy. As HR experts, we need to interpret the world that is forming in terms of talents, competencies, values, attitudes, lifestyles. If we really want to be able to interpret our role in today’s organisations, we need to help the new generation form itself. Well, ok, I hear what some of you are thinking. “Helping a generation to form” is not exactly what you find in a typical HR job description. But let’s face it. Recent times have shown that private companies are, in many ways, the real frontline to the needs and desires of a new generation. In many countries, the schooling system has ceased to offer a real strong support to the evolution of a generation, constrained by continuous budget cuts and an aging teaching body. Family is so challenged by today’s economic crisis, that it also cannot offer a real consolidation effort …