Thursday, May 30, 2019

The State of Human Capital Management

A recent study by HR.Com showed increased focus on the replacement of HRIS, Payroll and/or Performance Management systems. The intent to overhaul points to three specific trends:
  1. System Consolidation is afoot
  2. Rule Structures are changing 
  3. Systems that remain unchanged will be complimented by others
Installing Human Capital Management technology can be a journey: the qualification process is lengthy and once the system is adopted we care not to steer employees in other directions.

Which is why we tend to put up with aging technology.

As legacy systems remain the backbone of hierarchy holding, you'll see a move toward system consolidation to improve program access and create ease in the user experience.

The emphasis on system consolidation through integration and middleware programming can improve the user experience across all platforms without overhauling entire systems.

Strategy & Scale
Too often, technology is deployed with half baked initiatives through an off-the-shelf solution. Piloting programs can yield actionable data but turning baby steps into a marathon can tarnish long-term engagement.

Technology needs to allow for self-administration, the ability to add/delete function with relative ease and a path to development to ensure users are incented for continual participation.

Steady as She Goes
The aforementioned study showed Employee Recognition programs remaining unchanged throughout most organizations.

Is this because programs are allowing for scale?

As employee recognition becomes an integral spoke in the larger Employee Engagement cycle, we are seeing these programs evolve through functional integration and gamification. You'll also find goal setting and real time feedback to start moving their way onto ER platforms.
Technical integrations can enhance the look and feel of an employee site while increasing adoption through communication and challenge architecture. Before you attempt to re-write history, you might want to explore how you can give your existing deployments a face lift.

Your learning at #SHRM19 is complimented by a wide-reaching solution set displayed in the Exhibitor Hall. Inventory your HCM systems before arriving in Las Vegas. You may find there are ways to improve upon your current solution set without spending $1 million or re-tooling your entire HRIS technology stack.

Learn, Apply and Improve!


Friday, May 17, 2019

In Commencement

To The Class of 2019 -
You sit now in a place where possibilities are limitless, your ambition is boundless and there is not a single barricade before you.... why should there be?

When tomorrow's sunshine hits your hung over head, the reality of the life before you will really sink in... There will be more foggy mornings, and as sure as they come and go, the roller coaster of life's achievements and failures will dip and turn.

You'll find a job and lose one. You'll secure a major partnership, close a huge deal, rectify an accounting mishap, develop a patent, found a company, save a life, or develop a new technology that improves human engagement..... and through it all there will be songs that make you smile and movies that make you cry and books that bring you back to this very moment... when the world opened it's arms to you.

There was a man who stood before a class like yours on a day like this and told them that they were not special....


As you sit in your cap and gown today, you had better believe that you are special!!!! There are people born addicted to drugs. There are those who were born into lifestyles where college was simply not an option. The opportunity you have is not just about you, it is about those who have not (and will never) have the privilege that you have.


You'll sit in your car 10 minutes early for work wishing you were back here with these wonderful people who gave birth to your ambition. Then, you'll shut off the engine and walk into what will be another of the 7,500 days of work that absorb the greater part of your life.

7,500 days. That's 30 years of work with 2 weeks vacation.

With that statistic in mind, you might want to take a moment, right now, to ask yourself one very important question:

Are You Prepared to Love What You Are Going to Do for the Rest of Your Life?

The most miserable people I know dedicated 100 hours a week to their first job and lost their family in the process. They then started another job (and another family) and lost them too.

If the standards for your happiness relate to financial gain at any cost, you will never succeed!

One of 3 things I can tell you today is that:

Those who put money first, fail!

You might fall in love with the girl in accounting or the boy from the warehouse. Don't ever allow a person's position on the occupational hierarchy to dissuade you from loving them. Judgment of one's trade has no contribution to the collective (and highly unprofessional) human agreement called love.

What got you here today?

Do you remember the little league championship you won or the first boy you kissed. Each are equally important.

Which brings me to my second recommendation:

The respect you extend your waiter is far more important than folding your hands in-front of your CEO.

You may feel as though you are at the top of your social hierarchy at the moment.... please believe.... you will fail miserably, lose friends, find yourself less-attractive in the mirror and struggle to put your perfect resume in the right hands.

The same people you see on the way up, you will see on the way down!

Long before your beautiful heads emerged from your mother's bodies, there was a man called John Lennon. He had a smack problem and was a bad drunk, so don't let your Dad tell you he was the second coming of God. But  before we talk about him, let's reflect on that fact that each of you emerged from the body of the woman.

Gentlemen - take one second to thank the woman nearest you.....

They are the reason we are here, the reason we will strive to achieve greatness, and the people who will bail us out if all the dreams that fill our heads today fail to reveal themselves.

Be willing to take any job offered you and to elevate yourself through the hierarchy.

Be OK with the next decade of your life mirroring a flight tasting..... try a few different things and see what sticks, where you find intrigue, and how you find your individual gift contributing to the greater good. NOW is the time to experiment. You'll likely not have that luxury when you are my age.

The degree that is soon to hit your hands is massively important.... you carry the hopes of those who were not fortunate enough to earn one.... experience is important.... try, fail and try again... creativity is important... try to see that other side of everything.

You will succeed!

You will fail!

... and in the moment when you least expect it, when life's frustrations seem to have derailed you, your eyes will lock with those of a person across the room and all the worries you've ever had will turn into the motivation of serving a higher purpose.

Beyond professional advice or the validation of the journey that brought you here, I leave you with the words of the aforementioned forgotten hero, John Lennon:


Congratulations on your remarkable achievement! Remember that you ARE special! Go now and find what you love!

- Dave             

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Workforce Synchronicity

As we head into #SHRM19 , attendees are called to many tasks: keynotes, general sessions, the exhibitor hall, networking opportunities and a little bit of well-deserved YOU time.Your SHRM Annual Conference Experience can benefit from making the connection between that which is said in sessions and how it relates to that which is showcased in the Exhibitor Hall.

Technology may serve as the backbone of your workforce programs. YOUR ADVOCACY is the difference between financial drain and occupational necessity.

So, as you hear HR Professionals call for workforce change, do something about it!

1. Examine the gaps in your organization's Human Strategy
2. Crowdsource ideas from your peers
3. Find the appropriate solution

Here are a few technical applications that require Human Connection.....

Are we still talking about gamification as a Human Resource trend? 

No, we've come to realize that The G Word is a necessity to workforce motivation.

We start by examining intrinsic motivators, structure game dynamics and then infuse game mechanics.

If you think your organization is avoiding Gamification, think again. Any behavioral modeling that asks an employee to complete a path to a goal, then provides validation of goal attainment, is Gamification in practice.

Kick the G Word trend to the curb if you must,  but realize the strategic necessity of Behavioral Modeling.

Are we still buying that 75% of the workforce is disengaged?

Do we still believe candor can be present when employees receive an "ask for input" from the "people police"?

We've been asking for an alternative to the annual employee survey since 2007.

Find a way to engage workforce input from a place of trust, transparency and human interaction.

HR Technology 
You've deployed 12 different technical solutions to assist your workforce: an LMS and a CRM and a Recognition System and a Collaboration Tool and an internal social network and a pulse survey and a performance management system........ and each of them have 20% adoption while being difficult to locate with expiring passwords that turn employees away after 30 seconds of trying.

Your employees need a centralized access point to every technical suite offered:

One page.... one point of contact.... one pass word.

Once you've streamlined adoption, revolutionize engagement by setting up a comprehensive points program that inter-relates activity on all employee platforms.

Sound too good to be true? It's much easier than you think.

Think about it: would you enroll in every consumer loyalty program offered you if you knew your points from your hotel loyalty program combined with your airline rewards... and your on-line product purchases... and your retail credit card spend?

Wouldn't it be glorious if your every action served a centralized rewards model?

You can create this for your employees..... what are you waiting for?  

See You at #SHRM19 !


Wednesday, May 8, 2019

You'll Have to Risk Frustration

It was a sleepless night after the little league team I coach along with the local basketball and hockey teams all suffered losses. One who does not understand sports would think my mental anguish in such a predicament to be senseless.... it may just be, but let me try to explain.

I have always been a person who takes on commitments with the focus of 1,000 lions. I prepare by considering every possible outcome, am always early to appointments, accept extra responsibility, vocalize when things are off track and do my best to give others credit when things go well. I simply do not possess the human characteristic that allows others not to care. At times this is a curse.... the failures are not cured by the relief of victory.

The unfortunate part of trying is that frustration is eminent!!!!

That's why most people stop trying.... It's not worth the miles of anguish required to reach those few beautiful views on the way up the mountain.

I'd guess risking frustration is the very essence of what keeps us evolving. I guess when I get to the point of sitting on the sidelines while others influence, the future would seem debilitating. So as long as I am able, I'm going to be part of the game!

There will be more sleepless nights in the pursuit of finding a way to help others discover and exercise their true potential.

It's hard being critical of others, but we are not always speaking to those who have under-performed from a place of criticism. Some times, seeing people fall short of their potential is simply heart breaking. There are those who are infinitely capable who never find success because no one ever came along to help them find it.

It takes a lot to fill one's heart. It only drips slightly.

What is the true intent of your daily energy?

To succeed?

To conquer impossible?

Or is your drive simply to be left alone?

How long ago did you give up on your dreams?

Dear Friends - we'll have to put our personal comfort aside if we wish to help others and it may take them a while to learn what we have to teach.

Are you willing to keep what you have to teach in your pocket?

Is your fear driven by the all-too-real presumption that those to whom you give your love will abuse it?

Do you think that your time would be better spent with your hands in your pockets, on the sideline, watching others try?

All we can do is dive in and help those we seek to influence get better.

I'm sure you'll miss the game when you decide to stop having an influence on the outcome.

There will come a time when you will be incapable of trying... until then......

Don't Forget to Remember........... !


Friday, May 3, 2019

The Self-Awareness Teeter Totter

Each day you wake up with one thing on your mind:

What Do I Need To Do Better?

The concept of that which keeps us up at night is an ongoing call to find solutions for the things we seem incapable of fixing. When we find a way to enter into slumber, the light of day is met with optimism. Lacing up the cleats is much more empowering than staring at the ceiling.

Micro-Management is the world's least effective workforce tactic because it is a reactive approach based in analyzing inefficiencies as they happen.

Think about it.....

When an 8 year old kid drops a fly ball and you yell at them in front of a crowd full of people, what do you think they're reaction might be.... Embarrassment?

Even an 8 year old knows when they fucked up.... your ability to point it out makes you a bully, not a leader. While we would assume a workforce of adults more adept at handling criticism, the motivational premise remains in tact.

Your employees know when they have under-performed. Emphasizing their failures reduces them to 8 year olds.

After we awake and take action the other side of the Teeter Totter gains weight.

Ask your network for help and 2 or 3 people will come calling. Ask your network what you are doing wrong and the internet will crash with activity.

At some point people stopped helping one another and stared competing. What was an effort to elevate all participant skills was replaced by minimizing one's competitors.

People love to gossip because it is a deflection method:

Stop analyzing your faults and deflect on others. 

This is the part of the movie when the underdog becomes a hero by sticking up for herself!!!!

When you give power to those who seek to replace your effort with their words, you deny yourself the opportunity to try.

Bullies are a funny bunch. They put their hands forward to ensure you do not get too close to them. They speak and speak without listening... and when you call their bluff, they crumble.

With the awakening of each day the question of what we can do better has to be accompanied by the process of counting our blessings.

Last I checked, we are all still here, ready to fight the good fight!

Back a Man in the corner long enough and he's gonna come out swinging......

Push back and balance the Teeter Totter!

Don't Forget to Remember!