Entries by Allison Barrett

How to find and hire employees who care

“The most powerful competitive advantage any organization can have is employees who care.”

Mel Kleiman’s statement is simple yet effective. In his recent article, Kleiman discusses the importance of finding and hiring employees who care. These kinds of employees give discretionary effort, which is the definition of an engaged employee.

Engaged employees care about doing their job well, they care about the company’s products and services, they care about themselves and, most importantly, they care about the customer. Employees who care about customers provide superior service and experiences, which organically translates into increased customer retention and sales.→ Read More

Apple’s victory is “all about values”

You may have heard about the recent patent lawsuit and trial between Apple and Samsung. A few weeks ago, the jury found Samsung guilty on multiple counts and ordered the company to pay $1 billion in damages. Although the trial was a dispute about patent infringement, Apple claims the lawsuit and victory was not about patents or money but about values.

After the verdict, Apple CEO Tim Cook sent a memo to employees (you can read the memo here). As Cook states, “For us this lawsuit has always been about something much more important than patents or money.→ Read More

How Gen Y is dictating the workforce

A multitude of stories have recently published in a variety of publications about the state of the Gen Y worker. One particularly interesting article came from The Wall Street Journal titled, “More Firms Bow to Generation Y’s Demands.”

In the article, Leslie Kwoh discusses how employers say concessions are necessary to retain Gen Y workers. Many companies face retention issues with Gen Y, and they are discovering and trying to adapt to the needs and expectations of this younger workforce.→ Read More

Achievers 50 Most Engaged Workplaces™ revealed

Ever wondered what companies have the most engaged workplaces? You’re in luck because Achievers recently announced the winners of the Achievers 50 Most Engaged Workplaces™ Awards. This annual award recognizes top employers that display leadership and innovation in engaging their employees. The list honors 50 companies in the U.S. and 50 companies in Canada. Winners represent companies of all sizes in a wide range of industries, including Royal Caribbean Cruises, The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, Zappos, Eli Lilly Canada, KPMG and Starwood Hotels & Resorts.→ Read More

3 ways to talk to your employees and learn something

It’s common knowledge that businesses need to understand their customers in order to be successful. Companies that have a thorough knowledge of their target market are better equipped to produce and deliver superior products and services to their customers. The way companies gain this knowledge is to listen to their customers. Listening to your customers helps you learn about their pains and struggles so you can create the innovative solutions that they will want to purchase.

In Janine Popick’s article, “Talk to Your Customers; You Might Learn Something,” she discusses how CEO’s need to make themselves available to see what customers are saying and communicate with them directly.→ Read More

10 qualities of a “magnetic manager”

Like many people across the globe, I was glued to my TV for two weeks watching the Summer Olympics. Not only am I impressed by the Olympic talent, I’m also impressed by the coaches that trained them. It takes years to prepare for the games, and it’s admirable how these coaches inspire and challenge athletes to reach their greatest potential. They are the best coaches in the world because they are brilliant at leading their teams to success.

In the workplace, this type of leadership is displayed through great management.→ Read More

Is summertime good or bad for productivity?

Summer vacation is on my mind a lot, but it’s not what you think. Instead of dreaming about escaping to a tropical island (which I admit, I still do from time to time), I’m actually interested in research on how summertime impacts business productivity. I wrote a previous post about “Why Leaving Work Early is Good for Business”, and “Taking Back Vacation Days,” so I had to investigate the latest Inc.com article titled “Summer: To Chill Out or Work Harder?” I wanted to know: is summer good or bad for employee productivity?→ Read More

Why companies need a tough interview process

The ability to recruit top talent is a key determinant of business success. That is why companies invest time and resources into attracting candidates and then administering a tough interview process designed to uncover the top performers. As a result, the interview process has become increasingly more challenging for job seekers. Whether they include a panel, situational questions, or live presentations, interviews are designed to help companies learn more about applicants, their skill sets and cultural compatibility and, ultimately, identify the perfect match for the position.→ Read More

No “case of the Mondays” for engaged employees!

Have you ever had a “Case of the Mondays?” It’s the unpleasant mood and dread you might feel at work on Monday after coming back from the weekend. Typically, this mood affects your positivity and productivity at work. Did you know that engaged employees are less likely to experience this problem? Engaged employees anticipate Mondays with excitement and are ready to start creating value from your organization the minute the work week begins.→ Read More

How engaged are your employees? 5 levels to consider

Consider this analogy: Employee engagement is like an onion with multiple layers. John Hollon at TLNT (a fantastic HR blog you should follow if you don’t already) wrote an interesting article about this concept. In Hollon’s article, “The 5 (Yes, 5!) Levels of Employee Engagement,” he profiles the 5-level engagement model that global consulting firm, Blessing White, created. While you may not agree or believe in the levels they’ve identified, the model asserts there are varying levels of what it means for an employee to be engaged.→ Read More

Why you don’t want workaholic employees

For many employees, the idea of a 40-hour work week is a thing of the past. Smartphones and other forms of technology now keep us connected to work 24/7 and, as a result, the lines between work time and personal time are completely blurred. It is easier than ever for employees to become workaholics and “burn the midnight oil” responding to client and business emails or working on projects. Many employers may think that these workaholics are great news for their business productivity and profitability, but they need to think again.→ Read More

Why “Employee of the Month” is a wasted effort

Remember when you were a kid and how much you hated it when your parents used the expression “because I said so?” On many occasions, they used it to justify the way something has always been done. While this may be the easy way to do things, it’s not always the most effective way to do things. Everything evolves, and suddenly one way of doing something doesn’t make sense or apply anymore.→ Read More

The anatomy of an engaged employee

Have you ever tried learning French from a Spanish teacher? It’s impossible, simply because people can’t teach you what they don’t know. Timothy Clark uses this analogy in his article, “The 5 Ways That Highly Engaged Employees are Different” to illustrate that in order to build employee engagement, you need to analyze and understand the characteristics of highly engaged employees.→ Read More

New research reveals the business case for employee recognition

Do you understand the power and ROI of “thank you” in the workplace? The latest research from Bersin & Associates  proves companies that say “thank you” to employees far outperform companies that do not.

The data comes from ”The State of Employee Recognition in 2012” report, revealing the secrets of employee recognition and the business results achieved from these programs. Additionally, Achievers alongside China Gorman released the results from the, “Achievers Intelligence: Insight Into Today’s Workforce,” which is a one-of-a-kind study revealing that CEOs and HR leaders have an inaccurate view of what employees want in the workplace in regards to recognition, feedback and  accessibility of leadership.→ Read More

3 strategies for an effective employee rewards program

“When it comes to running an effective business, one maxim holds true across all industries: happy employees are the best employees.” I read the opening line of this article and was instantly hooked in. What is the secret recipe for creating employee happiness? In an article from the Experience™ Recruiting Insights Blog, “The benefits of rewarding strong employee performance,” the author talks about the advantages of employee rewards programs. While there are several factors that affect employee happiness, employee recognition and rewards is a key component.→ Read More

The talent shortage epidemic: Why you must retain your employees

After five years of a slow and struggling economy, corporate restructuring and layoffs are commonplace. The current unemployment rate hovers at 8.2%, which translates into 12.7 million Americans looking for work. With such a large pool of available candidates, you would think that a talent shortage wouldn’t be an issue, right? Unfortunately, this assumption is wrong.→ Read More

4 ways to use your corporate social responsibility days

You know that satisfying feeling you get when you donate to charity? Or the pride you feel after donating your time volunteering for a non-profit? We all feel great when we give back to the community, and just as we commit to being socially responsible individuals, we also expect our employers to be social responsible companies. Employees want to work for organizations that are making socially responsible choices regarding their products and services, business practices, and as members of the communities in which they operate.→ Read More

After the big Facebook IPO, is talent a risk for Facebook? 3 tips to retain top talent beyond money

After eight years of innovation, expansion and hard work, Facebook is now a publicly traded company worth $104 billion. But as the IPO dust settles and begins to fade, what happens next for Facebook and its employees? Many employees have newfound wealth and, as a result, Facebook management faces a risk of losing talent. With their fortune, employees may start their own company or pursue other ventures. How will Facebook retain their top talent? This isn’t just for Facebook, many companies face this problem every day.→ Read More

How to write compelling job descriptions to recruit Millenials

Do you ever get tired of reading mundane job descriptions? The inspiration for today’s post comes from an article by Software Advice blogger Jennifer King titled Six Ways to Sell a Millennial With Your Job Description, and it reaffirms the importance for employers to effectively “market” themselves to Millennials. Millennials are an organization’s future revenue generators, and employers should take proactive measures to recruit them before the competition sweeps them up. However, Millennials are a unique generation, so employers need to tailor their recruiting strategies to what attracts and motivates them.→ Read More

3 ways to promote professional growth

You may have heard of Facebook’s philosophy “Move Fast and Break Things.” Essentially, the philosophy is about testing boundaries and the importance of continuous innovation in order to grow and reach your maximum potential. Have you ever thought about how you can utilize this concept in your company? Let’s emphasize how you should apply this concept to employee development, because professional and personal growth is crucial to employee engagement.→ Read More

3 ways to build a great company reputation

Reputation is EVERYTHING. Society beats this message into our heads every day. For instance, we’re told to protect our reputations on Facebook and not post inappropriate photos, or we’re told to build our reputations on LinkedIn as accomplished professionals. Your reputation speaks volumes about who you are as an employee, family member, partner or friend; therefore, your reputation should be protected and treated as a top priority.→ Read More

The “Happiest Jobs in America” reveals the #1 reason for employee happiness

What do a loan officer, warehouse manager and accountant have in common? Okay, the answer probably didn’t come to you immediately, so I’ll let you in on the secret: these are some of the happiest jobs in America. Yes folks, you heard that right. CareerBliss recently released the list of the 20 happiest jobs in America, and since you’re probably wondering how in the world these jobs ever topped the list, we’ll break down the key reason why these jobs outshine the competition.→ Read More

SAY WHAT?! Why communication is key to employee engagement

Communication is vital to employee engagement. All high-performing organizations have great communication and, unsurprisingly, it is a top motivator for employees. Great communication within an organization can be defined as open, consistent, transparent and multi-directional.

This means that ideas and direction not only come from the top, but employees also contribute to the conversation. Dialogue is free-flowing and comes from both directions, as simple and basic as a homemade telephone with two soup cans and a string.  Managers who are great communicators are also available to their employees for support, encouragement and questions. → Read More

Understanding Millennials and the needs of the future workforce

Millennials, Gen Y and Generation Me. These are just a few ways that Millennials have been described over the years. Do you wish you had some tips for understanding the needs of the future workforce? Many employers view the Millennial generation as an enigma, but you can’t afford to be uneducated about Millennials, as they are the future employees and leaders. It is estimated that by 2025, 75% of the workforce will be Millennials. The Class of 2012 will be graduating in a few short months, and it is important for employers to understand how to recruit, retain and inspire them.→ Read More