Recent Posts


  • Trade-offs on Minimum Wage

    The current federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour, but in his State of the Union address, President Obama proposed an increase to $10.10 per hour. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) reported, "Increasing the minimum wage would have two principal effects on low-wage workers. Most of them would receive higher pay that would increase their family’s income, and some of those families would see their income rise above the federal poverty threshold. But some jobs for low-wage workers would probably be eliminated, the income of most workers who became jobless would fall substantially, and the share of low-wage workers who were employed would probably fall slightly." Managers may decide to use more technology to reduce labor costs. For example, you can order a product and never talk to a person. You use your iPad, computer, or telephone. Raising the federal minimum wage would have advantages and disadvantages. What impact might a higher minimum wage have?
  • The Greatest Strengths and Weaknesses of the Millennial Generation in the Workplace

    Express Employment Professionals reported in “America Employed" that Millennials–those born approximately between 1980–2000– bring exceptional technological savvy to the workplace. By far, this is considered their greatest strength. On the other hand, their weaknesses include a lack of commitment and an over–inflated sense of self. “Our research shows that younger workers excel at the obvious–technology. After all, many of them basically grew up with devices in their hands,” said Bob Funk, CEO of Express Employment Professionals and a former Chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City. “However, they fall short of older workers when it comes to commitment to a job. “Younger workers always change the way employers do business. Millennials are a strong, free–thinking group whose attitude toward their employers is often ‘easy come and easy go.’ To create a strong workforce, employers need to be more willing to provide guidance to young people and help them settle into their careers, and Millennials need to be more willing to accept guidance.” Respondents were asked to name the “greatest strength the millennial generation has to offer in the marketplace.” The responses included: Technologically savvy - 63% Innovation - 9% Networking - 7% Resourcefulness - 7% Diversity - 5% Ambition - 3% Entrepreneurialism - 3% Productivity - 3% Respondents were also asked to name “the greatest weakness” of the millennial generation. The responses included: Lack of commitment - 29% Over–inflated sense of self - 27% Face–to–face communication - 14% Impatience - 14% Inexperience - 9% Inability to receive criticism - 4% Need for supervision - 3% Generations at work include Millennials and Baby Boomers . The biggest gap between Baby Boomers and Millennials is technology. How does this fact influence Baby Boomers' perception of Millennials' weaknesses in the workplace? What can Millennials do to overcome these weaknesses?
  • Young and Unemployed

    Express Employment Professionals released a white paper, “The Great Shift: Where Have All The Workers Gone?” (See attached file.) It reports that "t he labor force participation rate (LFPR) — or percentage of adults who have a job or are looking for one — has declined to a 34-year low." The labor market is toughest for young people under 25. (See graphic below.) Source: The Wall Street Journal In a Wall Street Journal weekend interview , Bob Funk, president and founder of Express Employment Services , says, “Anyone who really wants a job in this country can have one.” To land and keep a job isn't hard, he says, but you have to meet three conditions: “First you need integrity; second, a strong work ethic; and, third, you have to be able to pass a drug test.” If an applicant can meet those minimal qualifications, he says, “I guarantee I can find employers tomorrow who will hire you.” He thinks the notion of the “dead-end job” is poisonous because it shuts down all sense of possibility and ambition. One of his lifelong themes, Mr. Funk says, is that “a job—any job—is by far the best social program in America and the ladder to success.” What does “work ethic” mean to you? What do you think is a “dead-end job”?
  • Happy Labor Day!

    Labor Day, an annual federal holiday on the first Monday in September, is celebrated to acknowledge the social and economic achievements of American workers and their contributions to the strength and prosperity of the United States. Often, it is considered the unofficial last day of summer, because it is often the last weekend before the new school year begins. This is ironic since there is a connection between economic mobility and educational achievement. The more education a student can get, the better his or her chances of getting a job. The Brookings Institution's Hamilton Projec t "policy memo provides 13 facts on the growth of income inequality and its relationship to social mobility in America." (See attached.) The chart below shows that education is the best investment. The Hamilton Project authors report: "Obtaining a college degree can significantly boost one's income. Over the past three years, individuals between the ages of thirty and fifty who graduated from high school but did not attend college could expect to earn less than $30,000 per year. Those whose highest level of educational attainment was a bachelor's degree earned just under $60,000 per year, and those with an advanced degree earned over $80,000. But even individuals who attend college and do not obtain a degree still see an increase in their annual earnings." Do you someone who is trying to decide if working and staying in college is worth it? Do you know someone who has been laid-off and is looking for a job? How can people move ahead? How can they upgrade their skills? What is the vital link between education and the workplace?
  • Workplace Perceptions of Millennials

    Millennials are seen as lazy and entitled by human resources (HR) managers, according to a survey by Ouch! Millennials need jobs. So, in order to get jobs, millennials need to be seen by HR managers as loyal and hardworking. Were you aware that HR managers see millennials as lazy and entitled? Which of the tips above will help you the most to overcome the stereotypes?
  • The Young and Influence

    If you have ever felt like you don't have any influence, then look at this infographic. Young adults 18-24 are on the top of the influence pyramid. How do their new languages and behaviors inspire people that are both younger and older than them? How is the incredible power of today's youth directly related to those who came before them? What relevance does this have for organizations and managers? We All Want to be Young infographic
  • Credit Reports used to Screen Job Applicants

    The Society for Human Resource Management ( SHRM ) found in a 2012 study that about half - 47 percent - of employers check credit reports when making a hiring decision. Furthermore, the study found that the leading reasons organizations conduct credit checks on job candidates are to decrease/prevent theft and embezzlement (45%) and to reduce legal liability for negligent hiring (22%). (See slides below.) 2012 backgroundcheck credit_final from shrm Employers want trustworthy employees. But, is there a connection between a credit report and an employee’s trustworthiness? Gary Rivlin in a New York Times story, reported, “One study published in 2008 in the International Journal of Selection and Assessment suggested a correlation between a person’s financial history and workplace theft. But a 2011 study in the Journal of Applied Psychology found no link between a person’s credit score and what it called “deviant” behavior like workplace theft. (It did, however, find a correlation between a low credit score and an agreeable personality.)” Should credit reports be used to screen applicants? Are there exceptions? How relevant is a credit check is for a particular position?
  • Management Pays

    The Census Bureau’s Pathways After a Bachelor’s Degree looks at 13 different bachelor’s degree majors. For each major, you can see the estimated work-life earnings at each level of education. Below is the infographic for business. Those in management were more likely to be employed full time, year-round. People working in business earn more than the average of $2.4 million earned in a work-life. Also, people who major in business earn more than average. How important is what you choose to study in college? How important is the the career you choose after college?
  • Manpower Employment Outlook Survey

    Employers plan to add workers in the fourth quarter, according to the latest Manpower Employment Outlook Survey . The Net Employment Outlook for fourth quarter 2012 is +11% and slightly elevated from +8% during the same period last year. The survey is conducted by an independent, third-party research firm and includes a select sample of more than 18,000 U.S. employers. The Net Employment Outlook is derived by taking the percentage of employers anticipating an increase in hiring activity and subtracting from this the percentage of employers expecting a decrease in hiring activity. View the attached infographic. Where are the best metropolitan areas for jobs? In which industries? What does this employment outlook mean for you?
  • #1 Priority for CEOs

    "Getting and keeping talent!" is priority #1 for CEOs participating in PricewaterhouseCooper's 2012 Global CEO Study . More than 1250 company leaders from 60 countries were interviewed. Skills gaps are seen as a threat to business expansion. Thus, CEOs are changing talent management strategies. Of those CEOs surveyed, 79% already have or will have their human resources directors as one of their direct reports. See the attached infographic. How can HR managers become more strategic?
  • The Labor Force is Changing

    Dona Collins is an infographic artist, blogger and financial writer at . This infographic comes from the article, " The Rapidly Changing Labor Force ." How has the labor force changed over the years? How has that changed management?
  • Fired by email

    All employees at the asset-management unit of Aviva PLC, Britain's second-largest insurance company, were mistakenly sent an email which said , 'I would like to take this opportunity to thank you and wish you all the best for the future.' Many of the employees thought that they had just been fired by email. This story became news around the world. In reality, the employee was not fired by email, but had been laid off and the email was a follow-up message. Quickly, the manager realized what had happened and recalled the email. An apology email was sent. The costs - both human and financial - of a poorly handled termination can be extremely high. The rise in wrongful termination suits is due, at least in part, to mismanagement of the termination process. When asked, many terminated employees report that they sued their former employer because of the way they were treated, rather than for any financial gain. Regulations that apply to termination include: Age Discrimination in Employment Act Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Civil Rights Act Title VII, Civil Rights Act of 1991 Fair Labor Standards Act Family and Medical Leave Act Immigration Reform and Control Act National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) Pregnancy Discrimination Act When a terminated employee sues the organization, both parties lose. For the organization, the loss includes legal fees, time and energy of key personnel, internal morale, and external public relations. The terminated employee loses time and energy that could have been directed to the job search. Termination Action Plan Once the decision to terminate an employee has been made, the manager should develop an action plan. A pre-termination planning decision to release an employee, who no longer fits the organization's needs, enhances an organization's development objectives. Schedule the termination as soon as possible. Move as quickly as possible to a termination date. List the resource people (for example, human resources (HR) representative, lawyer, and outplacement consultant) available to provide support or assistance in the termination. A HR representative can outline the terms of the severance. Also, he or she can serve as a witness to what was actually said during the termination conference. An outplacement consultant assists the terminated employee in conducting an effective job search. As a result of this service, outplaced employees make a career transition more rapidly, with less overall stress, and have a distinct advantage over non-outplaced job seekers. The organization benefits from reduced severance packages, reduced likelihood of lawsuits, maintenance of morale and productivity of remaining employees, and increased community support for the actions of the organization. Outline the primary reasons for the termination. Explain the reasons for the termination clearly, concisely, and candidly. In addition to performance issues, reasons for the termination might include change in strategic direction, mismatch between skills and job, reorganization, new technology, or change in ownership. Develop a security strategy. If the individual has access to sensitive information, take precautions. For example, change computer passwords and secure documents. Arrange for the individual to separate out, under supervision, personal effects from organization property. Personal effects can be forwarded after a qualified person has had the opportunity to evaluate their contents. Point out that these actions are designed to protect the individual as well as the organization, so that no one can be falsely accused of removing confidential documents. Determine time and location. If the termination is held in the individual's office or in a neutral location, not your office, you can control the length of the meeting and avoid a prolonged discussion or debate. Plan internal and external announcements. Determine how the news will be communicated inside and outside the organization. A formal internal announcement concerning the departure and replacement of the employee is appropriate. Notify key external suppliers and/or customers with whom the individual had regular contact of the individual's replacement. Should employees always be terminated in face-to-face meetings? OR should email be used? Explain.
  • Human Resources Manager is #3 Best Job

    Human Resources Manager (HRM) is number three in's list of best jobs. According to the Occupational Outlook Handbook , HRM plans, directs, and coordinates the administrative functions of an organization. They oversee the recruiting, interviewing, and hiring of new staff; consult with top executives on strategic planning; and serve as a link between an organization's management and its employees. The median annual wage of human resources managers was $99,180. ranked 200 jobs from best to worst based on five criteria: physical demands, work environment, income, stress and hiring outlook. To compile its list, the firm primarily used data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and other government agencies. Compare the job duties, education, job growth, and pay of human resources managers with similar occupations at . Which job appeals to you? Why?
  • Gross National Happiness

    Bhutan, a country east of India, measures their country's progress based upon " Gross National Happiness ." In 1972, the Bhutan government started to develop a system for measuring the happiness of their people. The basic elements measured are: physical, mental and spiritual health; time-balance; social and community vitality; cultural vitality; education; living standards; good governance; and ecological vitality. Similarly, the International Institute for Management (IIM) developed the Gross National Happiness (GNH) Survey . The survey asks participants to rate their satisfaction (from 0-10 , with 0 being very dissatisfied, 5 being neutral and 10 very satisfied) in 7 areas: Economic satisfaction (savings, debt and purchase power) Environmental satisfaction: (pollution, noise and traffic) Workplace satisfaction (job satisfaction, motivation, ethics, conflict, etc.) Physical health (Severe illnesses, overweight,..) Mental health (usage of antidepressants, self-esteem, positive outlook..) Social satisfaction [including family and relationship satisfaction] (domestic disputes, communication, support, sex, discrimination, safety, divorce rates, complaints of domestic conflicts and family lawsuits, public lawsuits, crime rates, etc.) Political satisfaction (quality of local democracy, individual freedom, and foreign conflicts, etc.) Companies are measured by revenue and profit. What would be the advantages and disadvantages if managers started measuring GNH using "Bhutanese" type of measurements?
  • Managers Can Prevent Social Media Crises

    Smart managers at companies like Intel, Dell and Adobe don't need to ask employees for their passwords to social media sites, like Facebook. Jeremiah Owyang found three ways they did this: Create an easy-to-understand non-invasive policy about what behavior is expected from employees Train internally with existing employees and new hires to build a culture of good behavior Reward good behavior instead of penalizing the bad. Social Readiness: How Advanced Companies Prepare View more documents from Jeremiah Owyang What would you tell an interviewer if he or she said, "You are hired, once we know your Facebook password"?