by Matthew Stollak on Monday, October 24, 2016
2016 has not exactly been a banner year for my sports teams. The Michigan State Spartans football team got blown up in the College Football Playoff by Alabama followed by its worst start to a Big Ten season since the 1990s. The Spartan basketball team had an inexplicable loss in the opening road of the NCAA tournament. The Green Bay Packers continue to under perform. And, the Milwaukee Brewers? Well, their season was over before it even started.
Yet, I still soldier on. Why? Take Bill Murray.
- Extremely successful career with numerous iconic roles (Carl Spackler, John Winger, Phil Summers...the list goes on)
- Rich many times over
- Enough cachet and mystique that he can do almost anything and can get away with it because "no one will ever believe you." My friends and I have our own Bill Murray encounter at the Bears-Packers NFC Championship game highlighted in the picture taken above (story here).
As wealthy and successful as Bill Murray has been, he couldn't buy a moment like that if he tried, which made it all the more meaningful to him.
Here's hoping you have your own Bill Murray moment of joy this week.
by Matthew Stollak on Monday, July 11, 2016
I'm heading to Las Vegas on Thursday with a couple of 8 Man Rotation folk (Kris Dunn, Steve Boese) to take in a couple days of NBA Summer League action. Worth revisiting this July 2013 post. If you're in the area, come join us.
On Thursday, I will join three of my colleagues behind the 8 Man Rotation in Las Vegas (we always leave one behind to keep it going in case something befalls the rest of us) for two to three days to catch some NBA Summer League action.
Why do we want to head to the desert in summer time to spend 8-10 hours a day in a gym watching exhibition basketball when those games don't matter?
Because, in actuality, the games DO matter....for those playing. In his piece on Grantland, Steve McPherson describes what it is like for those involved:
These are guys who have worked their entire lives to be one of the 450 players in the top basketball league in the world. Guys who spent their whole lives being one of the best basketball players in any situation they ever found themselves in. And now it’s just the grind. They’re simply looking for their shot.
The ones hoping for that shot are almost universally flawed in one way or another: undersized or stuck between positions; not good enough at one specific thing to be useful to a team; dogged by problems we can’t even see, the kind of stuff many of us carry around.........
But for these players — who are among the top one or two percent of basketball players in the world — it’s their big chance. Not to become something they’re not, but to see their years of work turn them into what they’ve always been striving toward.
Those playing over these few days in Orlando and in Las Vegas are no different than the applicants to your organization. They're polishing their resumes, taking your work sample test, engaging in your role play or simulation, trying to impress you enough to take a chance on them.
For us watching, it will be passing entertainment...but for those involved, it will be all too real, with stakes that truly matter to them.
by Matthew Stollak on Monday, June 20, 2016
Dear SHRM Foundation,
We’ve known each other for years. We’ve had our ups (your support of the HRGames) and our downs (the 247 Director’s Circle pins you sent me as a sign of your affection). However, despite this rollercoaster of emotions, I’ve always supported you and been in your corner. So, in this public forum, it is time to declare my love for you and say that you’re the best thing under the SHRM umbrella. How do I love thee? Let me count the ways:
- I love your heart and generosity- you provided $170,000 in scholarships and awards in 2015. These scholarships and awards are available for such things as certification, studies in HR, as well as for dissertations and the HR Advisor of the Year (I'm a proud recipient in 2006). Further, you continually give many of the products that are the result of your efforts away for free to the greater HR community. You have changed and affected the lives of so many in such a positive, affirming away.
- I love your mind – You are the leading funder of HR research. Over the past three years, you have provided over $1.8 million in grants to fund rigorous research (which is near and dear to my heart). You are changing the face of the HR profession with cutting-edge products, such as the Effective Practice Guidelines, and the DVD Series. Your Thought Leadership Initiative is setting the tone by identifying trends that will impact the workplace in the next 5-10 years.
P.S. if you know of others who love you as much as I do, please tell them to stop by Booth 2640 while at #SHRM16 and contribute to make the Foundation even stronger. If you are reading this at home, go visit the SHRM Foundation website at https://shrm.org/about/foundation/pages/foundationhome.aspx, and read more about the great things the Foundation does.
by Matthew Stollak on Wednesday, June 15, 2016
Often imitated and never duplicated, the 2015 Season (our 6th edition) of The 8 Man Rotation is here. While it may be mid-June, the takes from Steve Boese, Kris Dunn, Lance Haun, Tim Sackett, and myself are just as fresh today as they were when they originally written. The thing about sports and HR is the lessons one learn from the sports world remain timeless.
So, just in time for your trip to Washington DC for SHRM Annual or for that father who enjoys sports as well as HR, this compendium is well worth your time to download.
Check out the 2010 Season here
Check out the 2011 Season here
Check out the 2012 Season here
Check out the 2013 Season here
Check out the 2014 Season here
by Matthew Stollak on Thursday, June 9, 2016
Jennifer McClure is a sought-after Keynote Speaker and Executive Coach. She combines her experiences as a Business Leader, Human Resources Executive and Executive Recruiter with an engaging, entertaining and informative style to help Leaders unleash their potential and create massive positive impact.
Jennifer has delivered over 200 keynotes, workshops and corporate training classes, where she shares a blend of inspiration, “how-to,” best practices and strategic discussion based upon her 25+ years of experience leading human resources and talent acquisition efforts and working with senior executives. Jennifer is CEO OF DisruptHR and is also a contributor to CareerBuilder's Talent Advisor Portal. She also posts regularly on her own blog, "Unbridled Talent"
Jennifer will be speaking at the SHRM Annual Conference & Exposition on June 20, 2016 at 4 p.m. on the topic “Take Control of Your Personal Brand to Help Your Career and Your Organization Grow”. She will also be leading a MEGA SESSION – The Future of HR: Four Strategies to Meet Business Challenges and Deliver Maximum Impact on Results on June 21, 2016 at 10:45 a.m.
2. Is it possible for someone with a long career to still have breakthrough HR moments? If so, how?
3. You have a session on Monday, June 20 at 4:00 p.m. titled, " Take Control of Your Personal Brand to Help Your Career and Your Organization Grow." What is the biggest mistake individuals make when it comes to personal branding?
4. You have an additional session (a MEGA SESSION!) on Tuesday, June 21 at 10:45 am titled " The Future of HR: Four Strategies to Meet Business Challenges and Deliver Maximum Impact on Results." Which HR competency is the top priority that needs to evolve?
5. You've attended the SHRM Annual Conference numerous times. What keeps you coming back each year?
6. What advice would you give to someone attending the SHRM Annual Conference for the first time? What is the biggest rookie mistake you see?
7. You love horses (and you can't spell horse without HR!). What could a HR professional learn about their job by interacting with horses?
8. You are CEO of Disrupt HR? What would you disrupt about the SHRM Annual Conference?
by Matthew Stollak on Monday, June 6, 2016
With the SHRM Annual Conference less than 2 weeks away, I thought the timing was perfect to revisit this post from 2011 about the requests of vendors to meet. There are only slight modifications to reflect that its 2016. Note...Since I wrote this 5 years, not one vendor has taken me up on it.
In 12 days, I will be flying out to Washington, DC for the 2016 SHRM Annual Conference. One of the rites of passage associated with registering and attending the conference is the bevy of mail you receive from vendors hoping to lure you to their booth to discuss the latest in HR technology, drug testing, relocation, etc. Occasionally, they entice you with the promise of a certain geegaw that you can't find at any other booth. It would not be uncommon to receive 13+ pieces of mail a day in the 3 weeks prior to the start of the conference.
However, the pitch has changed.......
In 2010, at the SHRM Annual Conference I had the opportunity to be part of the 1st "SHRM Blog Squad," where I had the opportunity to highlight many of the conference events. You can read more details about it here. Thanks to Curtis Midkiff (@shrmsocmedguy) and Jennifer Hughes (@SHRMPress), I will once again be able to share my feeble thoughts on the conference yet again. However, because of my registration as a blogger for the conference, I have yet to receive a single piece of vendor mail.
However, I have been inundated with e-mails from vendors asking me to set up appointments to meet with their CEO or hear about their latest product, presumably as a pitch to feature him or her or the product in my blog. In addition, I have receive numerous calls from these companies following up on their e-mails.
As a courtesy to these vendors, let me tell you about my credentials:
1. I am an Associate Professor of Business Administration.
2. In that role, I make approximately .1% of any decision affecting the human resources of our organization.,
3. In the words of Lloyd Dobler, in "Say Anything:" "I don't want to sell anything, buy anything, or process anything as a career. I don't want to sell anything bought or processed, or buy anything sold or processed, or process anything sold, bought, or processed, or repair anything sold, bought, or processed. You know, as a career, I don't want to do that"
So, I may be the wrong audience to target.
The one thing missing is a little WIIFM: What's In It For Me. What do I get out of taking time out of my busy SHRM Conference schedule to hear your pitch and feature your product/service/CEO in my blog? (One company who shall remain nameless did offer a "blogger gift bag;" if it anything like actors receive at the Oscars or college football players get when they attend a bowl game, count me in).
Which gives me an idea......
In 2010, Morgan Spurlock released the movie "POM Wonderful Presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold:"
In the film, he sets out to finance the movie by getting advertisers to sponsor the film, which is essentially a movie about how advertising is polluting our lives and minds.
Given how many pitches I have received in the past couple weeks, I have decided to become a sell-out myself:
1. Sponsor my blog
If it worked for Morgan Spurlock, it can work for me. I am more than willing to rename my blog, "(Your company name) presents: True Faith HR." I'd be glad to include your company logo in every SHRM16 blog post I write. I'd include your company name in every tweet I issue. I'd even include pictures of myself in your company clothing line. As my blog and tweets will likely reach thousands of eyes, what better way to get your name out there.
Just make me an offer.
2. Draw my name at your booth for your "Grand Prize."
This will be my 16th SHRM Annual Conference in a row. In my previous 15 years of attending the conference, I have yet to have my name drawn as the winner of a booth's grand prize. You lure me in with the promise of an iPod, laptop, or GPS, yet each year I leave empty handed. I remain firmly convinced it is due to the credentials listed above; if I am not likely to buy your product, why give me the prize.
BUT.....now I have this blog. Why give the prize to Donna in benefits from Boise, Idaho. Draw my name instead. You can be sure as all get out that I will be talking about my newApple Watch on this blog and I'll be giving your company all sorts of props here. C'mon, what better way to make your company look magnanimous that giving this here blogger your prize?!?!?
So, vendors, what say you? I'm not expensive....I'll take an Apple Watch, Amazon gift card, pound notes, loose change, bad checks, anything. Do I have to come right flat out and tell you everything?
Serious inquiries only!
by Matthew Stollak on Tuesday, May 31, 2016
In less than a month, individuals will be heading to Washington DC to attend the 2016 SHRM Annual Conference.
This will be my 16th straight SHRM Annual Conference, and, based on my years of
experience, here are the things you do NOT want to do while attending.
AccuWeather predicts temperatures in the high 80s/low 90s (Farenheit) during the conference. Given the significant amount of walking you're likely to do as well as the arctic temperatures inside the convention center to counteract the heat, you'll need all the H20 you can handle. Bring a portable water bottle and keep it filled and by your side at all times.
2. Do NOT suffer from SWAG remorse.
The exhibit hall is going to open at 4 p.m. on Sunday, June 19 and you going to be tempted by every vendor with some sort of gee-gaw or doo-dad that you absolutely have to bring back to the office. You may have already received an inch tall pile of vendor mail and you've mapped out your strategy for maximizing your haul. You may have even packed light so that you have plenty of room in your suitcase for all the giveaways. It is free, right? You HAVE To grab it. Trust me, as a former victim, you will suffer from SWAG remorse. It may take a week....it may take a month, but you are going to look at that tote bag full of "goodies" you brought back and you are going to ask yourself why you grabbed that 7th t-shirt or 14th squeeze ball. Regret always tastes sour.
3. Do NOT just attend the sessions
You're in the nation's capital. While there is much to learn in the convention center, your broader education can take place outside its walls. You have the Smithsonian as well as the Air & Space Museum and the Newseum. And, of course, you have the sights. The Washington Monument. The Lincoln Memorial. I prefer the Jefferson Memorial....the Weezy Jefferson Memorial, that is.
|Such a good husband to George.|
Just a suggestion.
5. Do NOT bring a rollerbag to the conference
I have posted this several times since 2010, and people are still not listening. Rollerbags are the scourge of the exhibit hall. They get underfoot, and people are often unaware of the people behind them when toting it along. Don't be that person.
6. Do NOT get in the way
You make think the exhibit hall is huge, but the rows are narrower than you think. If you see someone you know, step out of the way, so that others can traverse the area more freely. If people have to walk around you, you're doing it wrong.
7. Do NOT be Gwyneth Paltrow in "Contagion"
I know you are excited to be going to Washington, DC, and hanging with 12,000+ of your favorite HR friends. You may have already spent significant dollars on travel, hotel, etc. However, if you are even remotely close to being ill, please consider staying home. It seems I get ill once every couple of years, and most likely I caught something from a sick person. So, do not be patient zero.
8. Do NOT buy your coffee at the Convention Center
I know those vendors have paid high rent and are trying to earn a buck. However, the lines will rival that of the TSA as you fly to DC. Get your caffeine fix at your hotel. Also, the Convention Center is located near a number of cafes.
9. Do NOT text or tweet and walk
There will be 12,000+ individuals in attendance. When that General Session with Amy Cuddy or Mike Rowe lets out, you and all your new friends will simultaneously be trying to get out of the hall and head to the next session, the bathroom, or to grab some coffee. Please do not start walking and stare down at your phone. I am excited that you have the Twitter, Facebook, or Hootsuite app, and you are using the #SHRM16 hashtag. But, inevitably, you will run into the back of someone. This will not be one of those "meet cute" scenarios you see in the movies. Instead, you will likely be called out because that person you just ran into will see your name on your badge.
10. Do NOT rush the door when exiting your SHRM Shuttle
In the US, when exiting the SHRM shuttles, those in the front leave first and then the next row, and so on in an orderly fashion. Plowing from the back of the bus and pushing aside those in front of you is bad manners. You know we're living in a society...we're suppose to act in a civilized way.
11. Do NOT wear your SHRM Conference badge at night.
As SHRM notes, wearing your badge outside of the convention center will peg you as a visitor from out of town and a target for crime. Even worse, many of you will likely heading to one of the bevy of parties that are out there. Bad behavior might ensue. Wearing your badge will likely make your name live in infamy as people mention your sordid exploits at future conferences. Try to drink in relative anonymity and leave your badge in your hotel room. Sight see, but do NOT be a sight seen.
So, what else would you tell attendees NOT to do? Leave a note below, or tweet your suggestion to #SHRM16Festivus.