Sunday, September 15, 2013

Talent: Own It! Raid It! Set it Free!

Change This Manifesto

 In a prophetic speech at a 1943 assembly, Winston Churchill predicted that “the empires of the future will be empires of the mind.” The future is now: The knowledge economy is here. Gone are the days when competitive advantage came from real assets. It’s human assets that give companies an edge. Skill, creativity, and smarts are the modern ingredients of success. Talent has become the most valuable asset for a company and talent is scarce.

How do we attain and retain talent? How can we enhance the raw potential of new recruits?  How can we nourish it, nurture it, and be sure it is put to good use? And how should we react when it leaves us? The stakes are high in the talent wars, the winners prosper and the losers fade into irrelevance. Isolation, control and intimidation will not win you the war. To win it you must adopt a counter-intuitive approach. This is your talent war playbook.

Shake and Stir with New Blood

Don’t be Afraid to Raid

Tap into Untapped Talent

Discover underutilized pools of talent.

Beware of Security Overkill

The Human Mind is Not Real-Estate

Turnover is Not a Divorce—Be an Alma Mater, not a Sour Ex

Keep Your Enemies Close


So, You Want to Be a Creative Genius?


Is everyone creative? Sure they are but in very different ways and to varying degrees. There is a big difference between the folksong you wrote for your college sweetheart and a symphony composed by Beethoven. Our democratic longing to make everyone and everything equal has lead us to make creative greatness indistinguishable from an act of personal expression. What is lacking is meaningful appreciation of the different levels of creativity and how we can use them as steps for increasing our own potential.

Borrowing from everyone from Aristotle to Zappa, let’s examine the five levels and types of creativity, from the easiest to the most difficult to master, and some of the creative methodologies associated with each.

Mimetic Creativity

Bisociative Creativity

Analogical Creativity

Narrative Creativity

Intuitive Creativity

You may not be a Shakespeare, Rembrandt, or Leonardo, but you can always work to increase your own creative capacity. All of these approaches are within your power—you just have to keep trying new things. Remember, a creative life means you make it up as you go along.


5 Actions That Spark Employee Engagement

Switch and Shift

Countless studies have shown that a happy workforce is more productive than a dissatisfied one. When a company can turn itself into a community, miraculous things happen. Unity takes hold and the company’s goals become the individual’s goals. Word gets out the company is a great place to work, and that it in turn helps it to attract even more stellar talent. A perpetual workplace culture of talent is created. I see this dynamic at play over and over in the companies that I work with. For some leaders, building this level of engagement comes naturally. For others it’s a real daily challenge.

The following five steps are relatively simple, practical and doable. Leaders of all shapes and sizes can start today:

1.      Engage

2.      Recognize

3.      Be honest

4.      Nurture

5.      Delegate


Games and Data and Talent

Talent Culture

Two of the hottest trends in the world of work today are “gamification” and “big data.” But what do these concepts really mean to you?

For some HR professionals, this looks and feels like buzzword territory. But others are starting to recognize how game-based tools and big data intelligence can truly transform talent strategy. In fact, some of today’s most innovative organizations are actually combining these techniques — creating powerful new solutions that improve management decisions, as well as business outcomes.

New Paths To Better Talent Choices

The truth is, gamification, big data and advanced analytics are creating a perfect storm that is rapidly redefining employee acquisition and retention. These emerging trends are central to the future of work. And that’s why they are our focus this week at #TChat Events.


How To Lead From A Place Of Gratitude: Six Lessons


Not long ago, I was playing around on Twitter, searching for people with influential business and leadership profiles who could review and possibly share my last Forbes piece. Author Robin Sharma read and enjoyed the article, and challenged me to read his new book as a result. After looking at his site, I knew we were in alignment, so I dove into his new book, The Leader Who Had No Title.

Here are six key lessons I learned from Robin that you can apply to your own business success.

1. It’s never too early to work on your dream business.

Question: Do you pop out of bed excited for the day, or are you snoozing your way out of opportunity?

2. Live from a place of gratitude.

Question: Do you engage in any kind of ritual to help set up your day?

3. Splash ice water on your face (figuratively).

Question: How much of your day is ruled by worry vs. reality?

4. Question your role.

Question: Is your current role one of choice, or one of habit?

5. Take care of yourself.

Question: What do you schedule into your life to ensure you’re taking care of your health? Do you respect yourself by protecting that time?

6. Challenge others with vulnerable conversations.

Question: What difficult conversations are you avoiding in your life?


Management Readiness for Big Data: Skills, Talent and Tools

American Management Association

Big data…big deal

Information is supposed to make us smarter, but more often than not, it simply overwhelms us.

This program is for you if you feel like you’re drowning in data and unsure which data to use to drive your company initiatives. The truth is that the amount of data available to help run your business is greater than ever before. To effectively use this information, managers must consider the practical side of big data...what matters to you is how do you grow and build a team to make smarter decisions. 

Much of the information out there just discusses the promise of the data deluge. The challenge is not the volume of data but rather the judgment needed to use it. This webcast focuses on the abilities needed to discover, interpret and deliver data analytics across products and segments.

What You Will Learn

In this webcast, you’ll explore:

·        Specific skills to effectively frame the problem you’re addressing to uncover key opportunities and drive growth

·        Critical marketing steps of orientation necessary before engaging tools and technology

·        How to simply and quickly amplify decision making by separating the signal from the noise

·        7 key questions you should be asking linking analytics to strategy.

Too often people dive into the data only to be lost in haze of data. This discussion will be pragmatic and immediately applicable to managers across all industries.


5 Reasons Why Most People Never Discover Their Purpose

"The deepest form of despair is to choose to be another than himself." Soren Kierkegaard

We are lured into thinking that the purpose of life equals upward social mobility, establishing a career, accumulating wealth, competing (and winning), and holding power.

Even if we can admit to ourselves that we aren't fulfilled with success' trappings, all too often we cling to our illusions because they're all we know.

Here's what I'd like to propose: Maybe our purpose has nothing to do with what we do for a living. Maybe our purpose is really about living authentically and discovering who we really are.

Most people will never be able comprehend this perspective.

Here's why. 

You live from the outside in, not the inside out.

You look for a career before you listen for a calling.

You hate silence.

You don't like the dark side of yourself.

Carl Jung called it the shadow.

You devalue the unconscious mind.

In "The Social Animal," David Brooks takes aim at the bias in our culture that "the conscious mind writes the autobiography of our species."


You’re Probably Wrong About Millennials


Managers routinely complain about their Gen Y employees as entitled, disloyal, and lazy — and as a result, conflicts arise. In a study in partnership with American Express for my new book, we found that while managers have a negative view of Gen Y, employees from this generation generally have a positive view of their managers. Employees feel that their managers have experience (59%), wisdom (41%) and are willing to mentor them (33%). On the other hand, managers feel that Gen Y employees have unrealistic salary/compensation expectations (51%), a poor work ethic (47%), and are easily distracted (46%). While there is a tendency to blame their employees for generational conflicts, managers in today’s companies may need to rethink their own management styles.


The first step is to drop generational stereotypes and give Gen Y employees a chance to prove themselves. “The standard Gen Y stereotypes are pretty well accepted in the workplace,” says Carrie Hirst, a Regional Marketing Coordinator at Allstate. “Once people have gotten to know me, they will say that the stereotypes don’t apply.”

One of those misconceptions is that millennials are “entitled,” a word that has become synonymous with Gen Y in the management ranks. “I believe that they expect many things to come easy before the work has been put in,” says Dean Lawyer, Regional Director of Business Sales for T-Mobile. Contrary to what managers say, Gen Y’s are work horses and have a persistent hunger to discover new experiences, take advantage of opportunities and push the boundaries. The recession has forced millennials to develop this work ethic, with 44% of students who are working to help finance their education, reports Rutgers University. Through our research, we’ve discovered that millennials are the most optimistic generation despite economic setbacks. Furthermore, the Center for Women and Business at Bentley University reports that 84% of millennials view making a positive difference in the world as more important than professional recognition.