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Should Colleges Add Recruiting Major? #TChat Recap

I’m pretty sure the overall consensus was:  “Yes, we should offer college degrees in recruiting and talent acquisition.” And yes social media is driving the future of recruiting and many other industries.

But how to get there, well, that’s where the beauty of diverse opinion spread its colorful wings.  What was clear in my analysis of the smart and savvy Twitter steam last night was the fact that this kind of a degree should be graduate level and culminate in an MBA of sorts like HR programs that exist today — i.e., a six-year program with lots of educated bells and whistles taught by those with real-world recruiting and talent strategy experience twining reality with theory.

On the same educational track, there were those last night who had advanced degrees in human resources actually working in HR today (very exciting), and then there those of us who did the psych/anthro combo in college and who played HR/recruiting on various 1970’s cop TV shows (kind of exciting).

Don’t look at me that way.

Then there were those last night who just wrote something to the effect of, “Go to work in talent acquisition and recruiting and do it.  That’s the best educational experience you’re ever going to get.”

The best way to know and grow is to do; teachers, mentors and those training newbies should definitely d0-do.  I made a similar tongue-in-cheek remark last night, but I really meant it, the fact formal and informal knowledge sharing must originate from those who already do.  Experience doesn’t appear in a magical well we drink from.

Although I’ve been told about some ancient artesian well high up in the Sierra Nevada mountains…

An alternative to the college degree route would be industry certification, most of which HR owns in global organizations such as SHRM as well as others.  In recruiting, there really aren’t any certifications being offered.  There is AIRS and there’s also a new certification program called Black Belt Recruiter, but otherwise not as well known.

Would college degrees and certifications add validity and credibility to the recruiting and talent acquisition profession?  Does it in HR?  I guess that depends on who you’re talking with, but in the corporate world I’d say a qualified yes.

Again, either way, the best way to know is to d0-do.  And I truly mean that.

You can find last night’s transcript here and here.   We didn’t ask all the questions below, but only because a couple were answered within ones previous to them:

  • Q1: New territory. Let’s define what a recruiting/career/talent acquisition strategy college minor/major should be.
  • Q2: Are these separate majors/college degrees? Why or why not?
  • Q3: Compared to on the job experience, how would these college degrees improve the profession?
  • Q4: What would you consider to be the 3 most important pillars of this college curriculum and why?
  • Q5: Should it be a 2-year degree or 4-year, or options for both?  Why?
  • Q6: Who should teach these college classes and why?
  • Q7: You can get college degrees in HR/biz mgmnt, but should there be one for the recruiting/talent/business of careers?
  • Q8: And what about certification?  HR has them but should careers/recruiting/talent strategy as well?  Why?

Thank you all for joining us last night!  Next week’s topic is “For fear of firing– reconciling being a good leader/boss with being a good person” and will be moderated by TalentCulture’s very own Meghan M. Biro.

Tweet you next time.  I’ll see some of you at the ERE Expo tonight in sunny rainy San Diego.

Best Practices: HR/Recruiting Tech & Software: #TChat Recap

A funny thing happened on the way to the #TChat:  I found a new career and home at Ventana Research.

The irony is that on the night that we discuss best practices in evaluating, purchasing & implementing HR/Recruiting technology & software, I had a business dinner to attend.

(wink)

But hey, you had one of the sharpest HR/Recruiting technology & software analysts with you last night in Sarah White.  And since I can’t get to the transcript at the moment, from what I can see at least,  it looks like there was some great recruiter counterpoint from our friend Glen Cathey and several other key players. Thanks as always for sharing your time with us.

Three key pointers from last night’s #TChat:

  • Develop business rules, employee workflow processes, employee skill matrices, etc., before you automate your talent management
  • Build a business case of needs for HR tech that reach across other lines of business in your organization – work with the COO, CFO and IT to get it done
  • Get tons of customer references and call every one of them
  • Make sure the IT manager assists with the implementation process and becomes the vendor liaison

Sadly, according to Ventana benchmark research on workforce automation and analytics:

  • As for talent management technology, nearly 2/3 of organizations are less than satisfied with what they have
  • While only 9 percent of organizations are very satisfied
  • Spreadsheets are the technology most commonly used for workforce analytics in 62 percent of organizations
  • Nearly half of organizations (48%) are less than confident in the quality of information that is generated by their analytics

We hope our more intimate chat (Many of you have shared with us that you cannot get a word in on #TChat – last night was your chance- smiles) isn’t indicative of the state of HR/Recruiting technology per the above statistics, but with a little help from folks like Sarah, myself and the vendor community, and many other smart industry folks, we can make this HR/Recruiting technology thing work.

Next week’s topic: Developing a Recruiting/Talent Acquisition major at the college level. What would be in the curriculum, etc.? Should be interesting.

Join us every Tuesday night from 8-9 p.m. ET (5-6 p.m. PT) on Twitter via hashtag #TChat. Remember we welcome global input! Join in from wherever you might be. Our live chat is hosted by @KevinWGrossman @MeghanMBiro@TalentCulture, and @Monster_WORKS. Please Tweet or DM us for more scoop!

  • Q1: Where do you go first when researching HR/recruitment tech & software and why?
  • Q2: What types of info help your quest for HR/recruitment tech & software and why?
  • Q3: What does your HR tech business case entail and who do you include in the planning?
  • Q4: How do you narrow the field of vendors? What are your selection criteria and why?
  • Q5: How do you decide on whether to select a SaaS solution, on-premise or a combination?
  • Q6: How do you manage the implementation process?  IT, consultant, vendor or a combination?
  • Q7: What kinds of training and support should you receive with the HR/recruitment tech & software?
  • Q8: How do you measure return and total cost of ownership on HR/recruitment tech & software?

 

 

Live from #TRULondon – Recruiting: Power of Global People Connectivity

I’m at the TruLondon unconference this week, meeting with people from all over the world – from companies and people discussing the social aspects of leadership, recruiting and HR, we’re learning and sharing stories about using the power of social media to make connections with job seekers and recruiting companies.

London is a creative and vibrant city and the TruLondon unconference, hosted by my friend Bill Boorman and their sponsor JobSite is an amazing venue – no powerpoints, lots of Tweeting and more like a long coffee/wine break with friends than a sit-down-take-notes conference. My kind of conference for certain. It is here where innovation has room to breathe and develop into new ideas.

As I listen to Bill and the other conference friends and attendees one fact remains: We’ve been on a career/workplace/media innovation roller coaster these past several months. Job satisfaction started 2010 at 45 percent negative and plunged to 80+ percent negative by December.

The job market tried to pull out of its dive but failed, despite the government’s recent attempts to redefine the meaning of ‘long-term unemployed’. Companies that weren’t hanging by a thread were socking away cash, holding off on hiring and waiting for signals that the nation was on more certain economic footing. All of us here are ready to say ‘done with that’ and are hoping – and talking about -how to make these times truly count for our recruiting clients and social communities.

What has changed that we can take into the next few months with lighter hearts? I looked back at our recent TalentCulture TChat– my new tea-leaves – for cues, and have distilled my thoughts from TRULondon so far as well. Here’s what stood out to me:

  • The influence of social media on the workplace, hiring trends and corporate brands is huge and will continue to grow. Smart employer brands realized they needed to use social media as both a recruitment and retention tool, as well as a way to take the temperature of the workplace and the larger market. Cheers to social media.
  • Innovation is en vogue again. You know I love hearing affirmation of this. It’s early days yet but I predict that workplaces that invested in developing an authentic culture brand and employee experience will start to see the payoff in innovation.
  • Risk is still significant that ‘stuck’ workplaces will lose their star team players, and maybe even the B team as well. By ‘stuck’ I mean the companies lead by the out-of-touch – the people who are afraid to clue into their emotional intelligence, afraid to change and ease up a bit on employees. The change here is that emotional intelligence is on the rise, and companies that invest in building it into the workplace will come out of the gate in better shape than competitors.
  • More companies will go virtual (and we will be recruiting for these skills) as a way to lighten the load on stressed employees, worn down from years of no raises or pay cuts or layoffs. Managing these highly-mobile, virtual workplaces takes a sure hand and a light touch. Finding ways to be successful with mobile, virtual workforces will be a key leadership/recruiting/HR skill. Note: Our next #TChat topic is Managing virtual teams and dispersed global organizations while maintaining workplace culture.  Is it possible?
  • It’s a new world of recruiting indeed, thanks to Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook et al. Today’s recruiters work mainly in 140-character bursts, and resumes are distilled into keywords and links. I’m spending time reviewing innovation in this space and it’s really very cool and exciting. It’s safe to say that LinkedIn remains the most widely utilized sourcing tool for recruiters to date from this list.
  • The notion of leadership is re-emerging. Too many erstwhile leaders have been hunkered down behind closed doors. It’s time to re-invest in building a culture of leadership, one that is inclusive and broad.
  • Culture is the new workplace must-have. Go figure. Cultures of Talent loom large. Authenticity, brand, stickiness, innovation and inspiration must come through in your workplace culture. Connect and humanize your employees with your brand and watch culture bloom.

What say you? Are you expecting more of the same or actively engaged with companies and job seekers bubbling with innovation, workplace culture and passion for doing a great job now? Love to hear your thoughts.

Employer Black Holes & the Candidate Experience: #TChat Preview

Originally posted by Matt Charneyone of #TChat’s moderators, on MonsterThinking Blog

With the way employers and job seekers alike refer to the “black hole” of online job search, you’d think it’s some sort of industry wide conspiracy, given its endemic proportions.

The candidate experience, writes #TChat co-host Kevin Grossman, is almost always negative or non-existent, regardless of the job title, function or level:

There’s only one job per multiple candidates, so what has their experience been with American corporations and SMB and startups alike?

Overall, pretty crappy. I mean, it’s not news to know how poor the applicant experience is and has been for a long, long time.

Case in point — I recently went through a fairly high-level job search with a well-known firm in the HR marketplace. Considering that they should know better the best practices of recruiting and hiring, I was left with inconsistent acknowledgement and no closure. Still. Even thought I didn’t get the job, of which the other primary candidate definitely had the edge on me, I was led to believe that there were other opportunities.

And then nothing. Crickets chirping in the night.”

Grossman’s experience, and frustration, echoes the experience of countless others, but he points to two of the almost universal expectations candidates have when applying for a position: acknowledgment and closure.

These are pretty reasonable demands, and the fact that most employers aren’t meeting even this basic baseline defies reasonable explanation.  The truth is, employers have gotten pretty good about the acknowledgment part; most applicant tracking systems have been programmed to automatically e-mail a confirmation directly to the job seeker for their records, and it’s sent out the moment they apply to an open requisition.

It’s the closure part organizations seem to be having problems with, to the frustration of candidates and to the detriment of their employment and consumer brands alike.  But the thing is, it’s just as easy to notify applicants that they haven’t been selected via e-mail, instantaneously, as it is to notify them when their application is received.

But no one likes to be the bearer of bad news, least of all recruiters.  Most seem to feel that letting people know they’re no longer under consideration opens a door that they’re trying to close, and that, in effect, no news is good news.  But it’s not.

In fact, for employers and job seekers alike, it’s very bad news indeed.  At Monster, we’re committed to advancing the conversation, and searching for the solution, for an improved candidate experience and to help employers transform the “black hole” into a brand-building talent pipeline.

That’s why we’re excited to be participating in tonight’s #TChat, Workplace Culture Branding – Employer Black Holes and the Candidate Experience. Join @kevinwgrossman @meghanmbiro and @talentculture at 8 PM ET tonight as we tackle this very important issue.

We might not come up with all the answers, but we hope these questions, and these related articles, help inform, inspire and impact your perspective on improving the candidate experience:

#TChat Questions and Recommended Reading: 2.15.11

Q1. Is the applicant ‘black hole’ experience real when applying for a job?  If so, why does it exist?

Read: Candidate Experience Isn’t About Pleasing Everyone by Claudia Faust

Q2. How does candidate/applicant experience impact employment brand or company culture?

Read: When Potential New Hires Are Searching for YOU by Emily Bennington

Q3: At a minimum, what should job seekers expect from employers to which they apply?

Read: Candidate Experience and Common Sense by Tim Sackett

Q4: What do employers owe to applicants?

Read: Candidate Experience: A Question of Values by Howard Adamsky

Q5: Should the candidate experience apply to applicants?  When does an applicant become a ‘candidate?’

Read: Candidate vs. Customer Experience by Gerry Crispin

Q6: What are some creative ways job seekers can get through the black hole or recruiters can handle the applicant tsunami?

Read: How to Get An Employer’s Attention in 20 Seconds by Jessica Holbrook Hernandez

Q7: Job seekers: What has your candidate experience been like during your most recent job hunt?

The Employment/Applicant Transaction: Acknowledgment and Closure by Kevin W. Grossman

Q8: Employers: what are you doing to improve candidate experience?

Read: Eliminate the Black Hole by Colin Kingsbury

Visit www.talentculture.com for more great information on #TChat and resources on culture fatigue and how to overcome it!

Our Monster social media team supports the effort behind #TChat and its mission of sharing “ideas to help your business and your career accelerate – the right people, the right ideas, at the right time.”

We’ll be joining the conversation live every Tuesday night as co-hosts with Kevin GrossmanMeghan M. Biro and Steve Levy from 8-9 PM E.T. via @monster_works and @MonsterWW.  Hope to see you tonight at 8 PM ET for #TChat!

HOW TO: Build & Maintain A Talent Community

What is a talent community?

According to Wikipedia:

A talent community is a collection of social cliques (or talent networks) of people that are part of the job seeking process. These people may be seeking a job themselves, offering career advice to others, recruitment professionals, college campus recruiters, sourcers, and friends seeking jobs or advice. Talent communities inherently provide 2-way interaction between the individuals.

A talent community is not a list of candidates on a web page or in a spreadsheet; it is an environment consisting of people who can share ideas for the purpose of career networking or social recruiting of candidates.

Employers can interact and communicate with prospective employees as well as inform candidates about employment opportunities, receive referrals, and handpick qualified individuals from inside the group. A talent community can include prospective candidates, past applicants, current employees, and past employees. Talent Communities are managed by recruiters and/or hiring managers.

The benefits of building a talent community

  • Qualified candidates at your fingertips
  • Less dependence on expensive, ineffective job boards
  • Less money spent on job advertisements
  • Increased interaction with potential candidates in order to help them understand what your organization does
  • Better quality of applicants to job openings
  • Creates a talent pipeline for future job openings
  • Attracts passive candidates

How to build your talent community

Turn your “careers” page into a central hub for past (“alumni”) employees, interested candidates, recruiters, hiring managers and current employees. Incorporate tools for communication and interaction to drive conversations in your talent community. Provide an exclusive look into your organization, its employees and the culture behind the company. Use video, multimedia, photos, testimonials, etc.

Create smaller talent “networks” within your talent community to target specific audiences.

Social recruiting solutions (such as Cachinko) provide separate plugins or an overall solution for managing talent.

Maintaining your talent community

When you start engaging candidates through a talent community, it’s important to continue to provide value on a regular basis. There are a variety of ways to do so, such as sending updates or an e-newsletter, providing additional information on new job openings and internship programs, creating contests, writing blog posts, or connecting via social media.

ERE.net author Kevin Wheeler said in an article about talent communities, “Communities of candidates are powerful and reduce the need for special sourcing or the use of outside recruiters. They can increase the number of positions a single recruiter can handle and provide higher quality candidates in a shorter time. They always trump databases.”

What do you think? Ready to start building your talent community today?

What Social Recruiting IS and IS NOT: Welcome to TC, Jeff!

Hello all,  Jeff Waldman here.  As my first post, I am sharing the latest article from my blog. I look forward to becoming the newest contributer to Talent Culture and hope you all enjoy my writing!

I’ve been itching to write something about social recruiting… why? Because people who should be all over social recruiting and leveraging it as a strategic practice to build kick-ass organizations just don’t get it.

Hmmm… “the Jeff Waldman brainstorm session”…

I took a blank piece of paper and jotted down any idea that came to mind when I asked myself why people don’t really get it. I wrote a few things down, then put the piece of paper away and did some other work, came back to it a few hours later and wrote a few more things. Here’s a bit of a summary of what I came up with.

  1. HR, who supposedly is responsible for attracting and recruiting new talent has absofrickinglutely no clue how to utilize social recruiting. And…. they should.
  2. Forget about technology for a second, it’s been my experience that HR is not very good at being proactive with building talent pools and pipelines, and integrating workforce planning, succession planning and talent management functions into the day to day business. Note: if you’re not strategic then spending any amount of time using social recruiting is a complete waste of time!!!  In fact, it’ll more of a detriment to what you’re trying to do, building and developing a recognizable and solid employer brand.
  3. The role of HR in most organizations, regardless of what HR people say their role is, is really nothing more than reactive, administrative in nature, and frankly viewed as a cost centre. No wonder why I cringe when I see the way over-priced Masters in HR program that York University recently started offering… I still haven’t seen anything in their course curricula that has anything to do with real business.
  4. There are obvious demographic characteristics associated with using technology —- e.g. “I’m 50 years old, I don’t want to touch social media….. it’s a foreign world to me so I’ll let one of our junior 20 something year olds figure it out… let me just continue doing my thing as I’ve always done it”!!

These were the common themes, and there are many other points that came to mind but the key thought is this:

All social recruiting really is, is a highly effective tool to proactively and strategically support the business attract and hire the best talent out there…. simple as this! The principle of talent attraction is not new one bit, but HOW someone does it is new….. TECHNOLOGY.  By the way, in addition to social recruiting being highly effective it is extremely cost effective, which in this day and age, never hurts the bottom line of your organization.

What Social Recruiting is Not…

Don’t forget that the core purpose of social media is engagement… conversation, interaction, consistent and constant dialogue, finding common interests globally, sharing, collaborating, caring and relationship building. However, I see on a daily basis people/companies that I am following “pushing” content out without really caring about the conversation and dialogue.  They are missing out on a huge opportunity that is literally served up to them on a silver platter. Why would I care what a company says if they have never shown any interest in what others are saying and doing? I value reciprocity, and pushing 100% of the time does not demonstrate reciprocity whatsoever.

Here’s an example that I think you’ll recognize. You’re following company X and you see a tweet on Twitter from this company that they are hiring a Marketing Manager… they include the link to the job posting that takes you to their website. That’s it… they may tweet about this job more than once. You then take a look at the history of this organizations’ tweets and you notice they are of the same variety, and they have only tweeted 15 times during the past year. Everything is pushed content. What’s different about how this company is using Twitter versus putting a job ad in Craigslist or Workopolis? You guessed it….. NOT A FRICKING THING… This is NOT social recruiting!!

The Point…

Social recruiting is not rocket science. It’s just a really effective way to proactively and strategically build the most talented and best organization possible. However, and I hate to break this to you but hard work is required on an ongoing basis in order to reap the benefits that social recruiting has to offer. All of those descriptive words that I used earlier to describe what social media should be are things you need to employ when using social recruiting.

The principle of building relationships have never changed, and never will. The tactics you use to do this though have changed, and technology is that change. If you want to compete with companies that “get it” then you better start fully embedding social recruiting into your day to day activities.

Be proactive, be strategic, be smart and help your company achieve their business objectives. Technology is not a scary beast that can never be mastered and learned. Find someone in your organization that understands the finer points of social media who can give you a demo of each of the primary social media tools (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn).

Then leverage the desired technological platform(s) to engage, converse, talk to, share with and reciprocate with other people…. you’ll be amazed how quickly and effectively you’ll meet and connect with people you would never have met otherwise. The senior executives of your organization will hail you as a hero to being “the one” who single handily increased the level of your workforce talent while reducing real costs associated with HR. They will LOOOOOOVE YOOOUUUU!!

The New Old World is the Power of Network: #TChat Recap

This is personal.

As it is for anyone right now looking for work.

A recent Monster+HotJobs poll found that 98% of American workers are “primed and ready” to look for a new job in 2011, their optimism buoyed by a recovering employment and economic picture.  (Read the entire pre-TChat post from @MattCharney at Monster Thinking here. Kudos to Matt and his moderation last night!)

And anecdotally speaking, one of my old background screening clients told me yesterday that business has spiked dramatically the past 3-4 months.  It’s across the board of industry and positions, but it’s primarily churn hiring — a musical chairs if you will — which validates the exodus chanting of late.

Combine that with the folks who have been out of work looking for work and you’ve got one heck of a job hunting mob.

Torches lit, walking arm in arm, resumes spellchecked (well, some spellchecked), outfits dry cleaned and pressed, breath mints in mouths, smart phones in hand ready to taser their respective employees and references alike…

This is the new old world of job hunting and hiring, and its landscape is familiar yet radically stranger than it’s ever been.

Here were the questions from last night’s #TChat:

  • Q1 – Jobseekers: What do you think of when you hear about “old world” job hunting?
  • Q2 – Jobseekers: What is the freshest new idea that you’ve used in your job search and has it worked for you?
  • Q3 – Jobseekers: From your experiences, how would you describe how companies are hiring today?
  • Q4 – Recruiters: What are some of the most egregious “mistakes” jobseekers are making?
  • Q5 – Talent Managers: What can jobseekers and employees do to better manage their careers?
  • Q6 – All – Which matters more to candidates and recruiters: the job or the possibilities of what the job might lead to?

You can read the transcript here from the many fine folk who participated last night.  Lots of great recommendations, many tried and true, and many more that were kind of new.

But for me, new old world is all about the power of “network” — and not just the online connections either.  You have to get on the phone, on the Webcam, and meet in person as much as possible.  This goes for both job seekers and employers.

You must maximize your network investment. Meaning, invest in building one out first. Then pay it forward and pay it back.  We are all informal mentors to each other.

Great question from last night:  Doesn’t anyone do informational interviews anymore?  That’s a great way to network as well.

Here are the top contributors from last night:

  1. @talentculture – 263
  2. @HRMargo – 92
  3. @dawnrasmussen – 91
  4. @meghanmbiro – 86
  5. @jillianwalker – 84
  6. @JeffWaldmanHR – 80
  7. @IanMondrow – 77
  8. @KevinWGrossman – 76
  9. @juliaerickson – 52
  10. @levyrecruits – 46

The greatest single predictor of one’s success and happiness during a time of challenge, every single time, is one’s social support network.

Torches lit, walking arm in arm.  It’s time to light up the business world, kids.



The New (Old) World of Job Hunting & Hiring: #TChat Recommended Reading

Originally posted by Matt Charney, one of #TChat’s moderators, on MonsterThinking Blog

recent Monster+HotJobs poll found that 98% of American workers are “primed and ready” to look for a new job in 2011, their optimism buoyed by a recovering employment and economic picture.

The war for talent is on — and the rules of engagement have changed. Job seekers are mobilizing, and employers are fighting to hire and retain the best employees, in a new and fast-changing landscape.

But what does it take to succeed in this new world of job hunting and hiring?  With the rise of emerging technologies such as mobile job search platforms, more powerful search engines, and the new ubiquity of social media in talent identification and acquisition, it’s clear the tools of the job hunt game have changed.  But have the rules changed?

It’s easier now than ever before for job seekers to position themselves, and their “personal brands,” so employers can find them. Employers can also target and connect with top talent at the speed of the Tweet.  However, the most important elements of the hiring process remain, for all intents and purposes, unchanged.

“Old school” job hunting and hiring hallmarks such as a well formatted traditional resume, a firmly established (offline) professional network and the ability to sell skills and experience in an interviewremain the most important considerations in the job hunt process, and the most powerful tools in the job seekers’ arsenal.

Join #TChat tonight, brought to you by @TalentCulture, @MeghanMBiro, @KevinWGrossman, @monster_works, and @MonsterWW – They will be joining the #TChat conversation live every Tuesday night with from 8-9 PM ET, 7-8 PM CT, 6-7 PM MT, and 5-6 PM PT as we explore what’s changed, what’s stayed the same and how job hunters, and the companies looking to hire them, can not only survive, but thrive, in the new (old) world of job search.

#TChat Recommended Reading: 1.11.11

This background reading isn’t mandatory to get in on tonight’s #TChat action, but we suggest checking out these articles by top career advice and talent management thought leaders and explore the possibilities (and pitfalls) of the evolving world of the job hunt and hiring:

5. How Technology is Changing the Recruiting Landscape by John Rossheim

4. The Rules of the Game Have Changed: Insights into Today’s Jobseekers by Nicole Williams

3. 11 Smart Career Tips for 2011 by Kathryn Ullrich

2. Recruit from the Inside Out: Establish A Relationship with a Talent Acquisition Partnerby Meghan M. Biro

1. Job Searching in a Coffee Shop by Peter Gibbons

Our Monster social media team supports the effort behind #TChat and its mission of sharing “ideas to help your business and your career accelerate – the right people, the right ideas, at the right time.”

Hope to see you tonight @ #TChat!

To read more, please visit www.monsterthinking.com/

The Impact of Social, Mobile & Video on Workplace Culture: #TChat Recommended Reading

I thought it would be useful to our readers to include weekly recommended readings in preparation for #TChat.

We will give this format a whirl from now into 2011. Wow, did I just say that? 2010 has been such an interesting year for workplace culture innovation. As you may know, I’m in love with ideas. It’s no big secret after all. Technologies like Skype and trendy cool mobile applications are revolutionizing the ways we connect at the office and virtual environments. So much fun.

Our “greatest hits” reading list for tonight’s #TChat is brought to you by our collaborators at @monster_works and @MonsterWW – They will be joining the #TChat conversation live every Tuesday night with from 8-9 PM ET, 7-8 PM CT, 6-7 PM MT, and 5-6 PM PT.

We also welcome global input and hope you can join from wherever you might be. We certainly want to hear from you. We are committed to creating educational content and social community here at the Culture of Talent. Learning is continuous here and we are nothing without people. People (AKA: human capital) are the most valuable asset to any organization or community.

Read more from MonsterThinking (originally posted by Matt Charney) on tonight’s #TChat topic. The Impact of Social, Mobile and Video on Workplace Culture.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We will see you tonight and look forward! Thank you for engaging with us on this channel.

Happy Holidays from our Community! Cheers.

Cultivating Diversity: A New Way to Network

Jon Lovitz did a routine on Saturday Night Live about how to be more successful. The answer to success was always the catch phrase, “Get to know me!”

Looking back on my first year of leaving the corporate world for entrepreneurship in the world of strategy and innovation, the success we’ve had has been linked in every instance to getting to know OTHER people over the past few years. This effort was coupled with trying to deliver a valuable experience to others through a presentation they attended, assisting them with networking, or somehow trying to help them whenever we interacted.

Another important element of my “getting to know people “strategy is embracing a concept vital to successful innovation: cultivating diversity.

Too often, I see people networking very narrowly, trying to meet people similar to them. Yet when all your networking effort goes toward people in the same company, industry, or geographic location, you wind up tremendously limiting your options.

As you look toward the coming year, here are 6 strategies to enhance the diversity of your networking efforts and ensure you get the greatest benefit from investing time to meet new people:

  1. Expertise Diversity: Network by topic, not by group – Rather than sticking to the same association networking events you always attend, review the list of educational events in your area and target your networking participation by topic, not group. For me, going to new marketing-related meetings and even to a lunch sponsored by a largely female-oriented organization led to re-establishing contacts with people I hadn’t seen for years and who now had very different careers and networks.
  2. Time Diversity: Allow yourself to network at multiple times of the day – It’s easy for your schedule to dictate networking only at certain times of the day, i.e. typical work requirements make lunches difficult so you attend happy hours. Figure out how to vary that pattern and go to events at a new time of the day. You’ll run into different types of people, creating new opportunities.
  3. Age Diversity: Attend events with someone of a different generation – If you’re going to the right types of diverse events, people from three or four generations should be present. To help in meeting people across the greatest age range, ask friends in generations preceding and following yours to join you at events. They can help attract and make introductions with a broader mix of attendees than you might ever pursue on your own.
  4. Profile Diversity: Be inefficient in meeting new people – Sometimes when you meet a new person, you feel like you’re being put through a standard set of qualifying questions to see if you warrant more time and follow-up. Efficient, yes. But I rarely want to invest time with those people. Put away the efficient qualifying-speak and ask questions which make sense for the person you’re talking with right now. Invest more time in hearing what they have to say instead of only listening for keywords important to you.
  5. Channel Diversity: Live tweet an event you’re attending and blog about it afterwardSharing a speaker’s content through tweeting at an event is a great way to meet and interact with new people both at the venue and those following it remotely. Turning your tweets into a subsequent blog post (either for your own blog or perhaps the association’s blog) provides yet another way to meet others interested in the speaker, the topic, or the sponsoring group.
  6. Audience Diversity: Speak at an event, especially if you never have before – If you’ve not been a public speaker previously, make this the year to prepare content, rehearse, and break into the ranks of people sharing their knowledge at public events. You’ll meet multiple people and be in the wonderful position of having offered something of value to them before even getting to know them.
  7. Atmosphere Diversity: Throw a party and invite too many people – Hosting a party is a great way to get to know people you already know in new ways. Since only a certain percent of people you invite will actually attend, play the percentages and invite a bunch of new people – more than you can accommodate – and discover new attendees who will become your great party guests of the future.

With these diversity-building efforts incorporated into your efforts, you’ll get to know a whole new group of people and have a much stronger network to show for it.

What? No Skype Interviews? #TChat Recap

That was most surprising to me in last night’s #TChat on interviewing.  The fact that most of the participants didn’t think live webcam interviewing was viable.

Here’s a quote: “Skype interviewing is like buying a car on EBay. Saves a trip, but not always worth the hassle.”

Why is it such a hassle?  I understand the U.S. still falls behind other nations in big Internet bandwidth and solid connectivity, but between basic Internet connections, webcams and Skype to Cisco’s TelePresence Meeting Solutions, we can connect so easily these days live and in person without really being “in person”.

Even smaller firms are hiring remote, virtual teams around the world, and it’s just not fiscally feasible to fly folks in for face-to-face interviews.

Phone screening works well for early-on interviews, but a lot of non-verbal queues are missed when you can’t see the person — and that goes for interviewer and interviewee.  Sure you can “sense” verbal queues via tone and responses, but there’s still interpretation lost without “seeing”.

I thank Jacqui Barrett-Poindexter for having my back:  “I think Skyping will become a ‘norm’ for interviewing; is fairly comfy, easy venue, in my experience. Just go to quiet room, dial up.”

Right on.

Otherwise most participants last night agreed that better interview preparation for employer and applicant are necessary to improve the potential hiring exchange rate.

I agree with one of Meghan’s final points:  “Key take away = Questions should be open — ended; avoid questions that can only be answered with a ‘yes’ or ‘no’.”

That’s the basic premise to behavioral interviewing — probing past performance with scenario-based questions will predict future performance.  You’re not going to get much insight when you ask an applicant “tell what your strengths and weaknesses are.”  But you will when you discover how the applicant acted in specific employment-related situations.

One other point I liked from last night was the fact that interviewing, at least early-stage interviewing, is more about screening out those who don’t make the cut versus identifying hiring potential of those who do.

Here were the questions we asked last night:

  • Q1: Why are interviews so important in the screening and hiring process?
  • Q2: Why are so many employers and applicants “bad” at interviews?
  • Q3: What are the advantages and disadvantages to phone screening?
  • Q4: How much are employers using live video calls for virtual team interviews (Skype)?
  • Q5: Why are behavioral interviews better than traditional interviews?
  • Q6: It’s been said that even the best applicants can train to even best a behavioral interview.  What to do?
  • Q7: How can emotional intelligence be assessed in behavioral interviews?  And can it be?
  • Q8: Any interviews gone bad stories?  Do spill.  I will repeat them in the recap.

I’m going to probe question 7 more in another post, but in the meantime, here’s a Monster article on the subject of interviewing and emotional intelligence.  And it’s hard to tell stories in Twitter because it takes a lot more space that 140 characters, so if any of you want to send me your “interviews gone bad” stories for future fun recapping, please send to me at kgrossman (at) marcomhrsay (dot) com.

The stats from last night were again fantastic.  Who says you can’t engage on Twitter?  We had well over 100 people participating in the actual #TChat hour contributing over 1,200 tweets.

Dang.

Meghan and her savvy TalentCulture team, the TC community and little ol’ me, are again very grateful for you all and for your participation.  You gave us some great ideas for future topics and we look forward to next week already!

Here are some insightful #TChat tweets from last night:

Interviewing: #TChat Preview

Our last #TChat before Thanksgiving was all about assessments.

What was resoundingly clear was the fact that face-to-face interviews were preferred when making hiring decisions, as opposed to using assessments from last week’s chatters. We are still weighing the verdict and will simply keep exploring this.

So Meghan and I decided that the in’s and out’s of interviewing would be the topic for the next #TChat tomorrow, 11/30/10, from 8-9 p.m. ET & 7-8 p.m. CT & 6-7 p.m MT & 5-6 p.m. PT. Remember we welcome global input! Join in from wherever you might be

We’ve got a great group of savvy recruiters, careerists, human resource folk, fascinating leaders, media mavens and hiring managers in our greater TalentCulture community, so we look forward to a festively raucous Twitter discussion on the subject.

Because most “hiring” professionals don’t know know how to objectively interview very well at all.  I would argue that some of the worst hiring decisions are made via interviews.  Yep, I said it.  So bring it.  Plus, most job applicants don’t prepare, at all, for their interviews.

Just ask a few of our resident career experts, Jacqui Barrett-Poindexter and Chris Perry and others….We love this stuff.

We’ll also throw in a shout or two for emotional intelligence (our first #TChat topic) and how that plays a role in interviewing today.

Wherever you stand on interviews and interviewing, there are best practices to follow and we hope to unravel those mysteries in our next #TChat.

Use your favorite Twitter client of choice to follow the lively #TChat hashtag or use to TweetChat and log in with your Twitter handle.

We’ll see you there!  Come subjectively unprepared.  You know, like for an interview.

Assessments: A Satisfying Success! #TChat Recap

I’m full, and Thanksgiving hasn’t even happened yet.

Full from the knowledge and wisdom shared from many fabulous participants and nearly 1,000 tweets in last night’s #TChat all about assessments.  You can see all the stats and transcript here.

The premise for last night was:

There are a variety of companies who provide a myriad of different kinds of assessments.  Many are reliable and valid. And some maybe not so much. The point being, we want to know what kind of analyzing techniques you and your organization uses, for whom, and why, and what results you’ve seen to date.

By no means was this valid scientific sampling of the workplace, but what was interesting was that for the most part, no one uses pre-employment assessments.  We saw Wonderlic pop up and maybe there was one or two others, but otherwise our participants use development assessments like DiSC and MBTI (Myers Briggs).

In fact, those where primarily the main two that kept coming up over and over (although StrengthsFinder came up a few times now that I’m reviewing). Considering the list I posted in the promo, even development assessments aren’t used much.

There was some confusion early on in #TChat about whether or not folks used the DiSC and/or MBTI for recruiting/hiring, which is a no-no, but I’m pretty sure it was clarified that they were not.

When I asked about emotional intelligence assessments, I received nothing but crickets chirping.  That bummed me out.

Here’s a sampling of the questions we asked (although not all were numbered):

  • Q1: Does your org use assessments for recruiting, hiring and developing employees? Why or Why not?
  • How do you screen when hiring? Only interviews and reference checking? Industry and position specific?
  • Q2: What other types of assessments do you use? (emotional intelligence, personality, talent and skills-based, etc.)
  • Any job seekers on this chat who have recently taken a pre-employment assessment? If so, what?
  • Q3: Assessments a money sink? What’s the ROI and do any of you measure?
  • Are there internal assessments to measure first 3-6 month productivity/development?
  • Q4: Besides mainstream assessments already mentioned, why aren’t many others used in hiring and development?
  • Since last week was about emotional intelligence, anyone used MHS EQ-i, TalentSmart, etc.? Results?

Most everyone was in agreement that “retention” is the primary measure of ROI on any type of assessment. But what was resoundingly clear (and probably because we had a lot of recruiting folk on the #TChat), was the fact that face-to-face interviews were preferred when making hiring decisions.  That could be the topic for the next #TChat — the in’s and out’s of interviewing candidates for roles? We think yes.

A special thanks to Dr. Charles Handler from Rocket-Hire for joining us and sharing his assessment insight (@RocketHire).  I learned about face validity again, something I haven’t heard since my college psych days.

Also, thank you to @HRMargo, @LevyRecruits, @IanMondrow, @sbrownehr, @CyndyTrivella@jkeithdunbar, @KateNasser, @ValueIntoWords, @AliciaSanera, @tlcolson, @BillBoorman, @AvidCareerist, @heatherhuhman, @dawnbugni and everyone else who participated!

TalentCulture captain Meghan M. Biro and her savvy team, the TC community and little ol’ me, are very grateful for you all.  Thank you again for participating. We look forward to next week already!

Here are some insightful #TChat tweets from last night. Have a bite! Happy Thanksgiving!

5 Important Workplace Factors: Recruiting & Retaining Today’s Young Professionals

The young professionals you will be trying to attract to your organization today are members of Generation Y, also known as Millennials or The Internet Generation. Technology was a part of their childhood and still plays a huge role in their everyday lives. They don’t have many boundaries between work and life, are tech-savvy and innovative, and in high-demand.

Opportunity

Generation Y expects several types of opportunities in their professional career. Number one, they are looking for a chance to grow and excel in a company – somewhere that will give them opportunity for promotions and other perks if they perform well and choose to stay there long enough.

They also are looking for opportunities to be challenged. Millennials aren’t looking for “just a job” or to “go through the motions” everyday – they want a job that will utilize their expertise and education in new, challenging and exciting ways.

Finally, Millennials want opportunity for personal and professional growth. This can be through challenging projects, collaborative tasks, conferences, etc. This generation is easily bored, and you need to be able to retain them through offering these types of opportunity.

Flexibility

Gen Y expects flexibility in their work hours, schedule and work environment. Many Millennials want to telecommute or work remotely at their ideal jobs. Although they expect flexible hours and schedule, this generation is more plugged in than any other –meaning they will likely work after their “scheduled” hours and have less boundaries between life and work.

Technology

Since they’ve grown up with the latest gadgets, Millennials expect them in the workplace, as well. They’re used to constant connectivity, and if your workplace doesn’t offer that, they’ll likely look elsewhere.

Culture

In order to recruit today’s young professionals, you need to have a great corporate culture that will intrigue them. Think: socially responsible, innovative and great people to work around. Millennials tend to work for companies that they believe in and share in their mission.

Mentorship

Members of Generation Y want to learn something if they work for you. That’s why providing a mentor for each new young professional is vital to keeping him or her at your organization longer. Not only can a mentor aid in skill development, but also they become a personal connection that the employee trusts in your workplace.

With more than 80 million members of this generation, you’ll need to understand them in order to attract and retain them at your company. For more information on Generation Y in the workplace, download an infographic loaded with statistics here.

VIP Treatment for Hiring Managers and Recruiters: College Campuses

Today’s guest post is by our talented colleague and friend  Karla Porter.  Karla is the Director of Work Force Development and Human Resources for a chamber of business, industry and economic develop­ment agency in Pennsylvania and blogs about Human Capital & New Media at karlaporter.com You can follow her on Twitter @karla_porter for “all things human capital, career, recruiting and new media… maybe more.”

In 2008, college students and their parents were wearing out their worry beads thinking there would be little hope for a long time for graduates and no way to pay students loans for many years to come. Post graduate enrollment increased with students thinking they might as well stay in college rather than face unemployment or have to deal with underemployment. At least that way they could stave off student loans a while longer.

At the same time, in one of life’s ha ha I fooled you moments, employers coming out of recessionary shock realized the economic woes were going to be a chronic case of global acid reflux not a mere blip on the radar, but they couldn’t necessarily hold out on hiring any longer. What to do?

In many companies the answer has been to help manage budget cuts by hiring recent college graduates with the aptitude to do the job at entry level salaries, rather than seasoned professionals with track records that command heavyweight salaries.  At the very least, hiring managers are much more willing to interview and seriously consider recent graduates than perhaps they have ever been. Whether it will prove to be a wise business decision in the long run or not, it’s the hand many hiring managers and recruiters have been dealt.

So, why not enjoy the VIP treatment college and university career services centers are delighted to bestow upon you in order to help place their grads, especially in these times of a tight job market? Get to know the players, build rapport with them and they’ll turn into a team of willing assistants for you. It might even help ease the pain of a “light” placement fee for third party recruiters or a smaller bonus for in-house recruiters.

Here are some tips to tap into talent – even if you don’t have a budget to get out to on-site campus recruitment events. I’ll use computer science/engineering majors as an example.

Do you have any tips you would like to share for tapping into fresh college graduate talent? Interested to hear your stories and examples.