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Looking for Great Talent? Look for Potential

"The cover article in the June issue of Harvard Business Review is titled “The Big Idea: 21st-Century Talent Spotting.” Since all of us as managers are constantly on the lookout for talent, the title, of course, grabbed my attention. The author, Claudio Fernández-Aráoz, a senior adviser at a global executive firm, boldly claims that potential is “the most important predictor of success at all levels.”"

Fernández-Aráoz says that potential is the fourth era of talent spotting. Here are the previous three:


No More HR Terrorism

"In yesterday’s Advisor, we featured consultant Tim Sackett’s What the CEO Wishes HR Would Do. Today, HR terrorism and Sackett’s 6-step program for HR managers."

How is HR a terrorist? HR tends to use the law as a hammer, Sackett says. “No, you can’t do it; it’s against the law.” A better approach is, “Yes, you can do it, but we put ourselves at risk for an expensive and prolonged lawsuit.”  You be the CEO’s risk advisor; he or she can decide whether to accept the risk.


CEO: Here’s What I Wish HR Would Do!

"What’s the CEO’s view of HR? asks consultant Tim Sackett. “If I had a gun with two bullets, and I were in a room with Hitler, Bin Laden, and Toby, I would shoot Toby twice!” Michael Scott (The Office). It’s about like that, Sackett says."

How did we get to this point? Sackett (www.timsackett.com) asks. He says, “Check out the graphics below. Don’t try to read them, just glance and ask whether your CEO wants to look at them.” (Sackett offered his tips during the recent SHRM annual Conference and Expo in Orlando.)


Termination Danger—4 More Sins

"In yesterday’s Advisor, we presented termination sins 1 to 6; today, we have sins 7 to 10, including the old favorite, documentation, documentation, documentation.)"

Boss: Documentation, schmockumentation; this guy’s a poor performer and I want him gone today.

The trouble with this scenario—terminating with no backup evidence of poor performance—is that there is usually documentation that shows good performance. Typically, since the person hasn’t been terminated before, his or her performance reviews read “good” or “satisfactory.”


‘I am appalled’ by SHRM/HRCI Brouhaha (Talk-Back)

"We got a large number of comments responding to last week’s epinion concerning the brouhaha brewing over SHRM’s decision to start offering its own certifications, in competition with HRCI. [See the original post here.] None of the comments is positive and most of the negativity is directed toward SHRM."

Two readers cleverly turned the sample question against SHRM. (See “Back at You” below.) Here are the responses:


I am appalled at these two are having such a dispute. They should find common ground for the benefit of Advancing the Profession. Grow Up!


10 Sins of Termination (When Managers Beg for Lawsuits)

"Terminations are never easy for anyone, but since they plant the seeds of many lawsuits, it’s worth learning how to do them right. Handling them carefully can save cash, calm frayed nerves, and maintain morale and productivity. (As long as you don’t commit one of these 10 sins.)"

Here are our 10 sins of termination:

Sin #1. Terminating Rashly in a Fit of Anger

Boss: That’s the last straw, you’re out of here—and I mean now!

There are at least three things wrong with an on-the-spot termination:

  • People don’t make good decisions this way.
  • There are many factors to consider before terminating.
  • Being disrespectful encourages people to sue.


Is Zappos’ Radical Approach to Recruiting Right for You?

"Yesterday’s Advisor featured BLR legal editor Jasmin Rojas’ take on Zappos’ new approach to recruiting—all on social media, no postings. In this issue, more of her thoughts about how you may learn from their initiative."

In the past year, Zappos received about 31,000 applications, and only hired about 1.5% of the applicants. This prevented the company’s small recruiting team from “working in a purposeful way,” according to Mike Bailen, senior HR manager. Thus, the onus here will really be on the candidate to make him or herself stand out from the crowd in a much less impersonal setting.


No More Job Posting for Zappos—Will It Work?

"You’re just getting used to posting jobs online, here comes pacesetting Zappos with a whole nother approach—do away with your job postings and rely on social media! Wait. … What?"

Bold Experiment or Crazy Idea?


But, Jerk, Lazy, I Don’t Have Time, and OK Are Not OK

"In yesterday’s Advisor, we began consultant Darlene Price’s list of 10 phrases that successful managers avoid. Today, the rest of the list."

Go here for numbers 1 to 6 of Price’s phrases to avoid. Price (www.wellsaid.com) is the author of the book Well Said! Presentations and Conversations That Get Results.


10 Phrases That Undermine Your Success

"There are certain words and phrases that managers should avoid if they want to be successful communicators, says Darlene Price, author of the book Well Said! Presentations and Conversations That Get Results. She offers 10 phrases that you should never utter."

To successfully communicate, says Price (www.wellsaid.com), you have to learn to present yourself and your message effectively. You’ve got to know your audience members and tailor your content to meet their needs. And you’ve got to be sincere, natural, enthusiastic and passionate, maintain good eye contact, and be calm and polite.


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