Appreciate Your Colleagues

A few weeks ago I attended ASTD’s International Conference and Expo #ASTD2014. After spending a couple of days with other T&D professionals, it reminded me why I’m passionate about T&D. As with any conference, you leave rejuvenated and excited ready to go back and apply what you learned. However, this year’s conference gave me another level of appreciation for my T&D colleagues. Listening to some of the difficulties other T&D professionals are having with management or clients made me feel normal. It was comforting to know that other people are having similar problems.

Some of their stories were so intense I wanted to hug some of my colleagues. The issues they were dealing with weighed on them so heavily they almost burst into tears. I also wanted to hug my colleagues (weather presenters or attendees) that provided solutions to the problems others were having. Watching people sympathize, empathize and provide solutions to other professionals was heart-warming.

As HR professionals (regardless of discipline), we are always talking about management providing recognition to employees. Why not look across the aisle at the person who is doing the same thing you’re doing and say, “Thank You”? Thank you for being so passionate about our profession. Thank you for sharing your experiences, I learned a lot from you. Thank you for the taking time to encourage me. Thank you for sharing your wealth of knowledge with me

We blog and tweet because we’re passionate about our profession. Every Friday, Christopher Demers does his weekly Best Blogs. Christopher highlights other bloggers because he appreciates the good information they provide other HR professionals. In the vein of appreciating other professionals there are several people I’d to thank; Halelly Azulay @HalellyAzulay, Dan Steer @dan_steer, Rory C. Trotter @SomethingDifferentHR, and Christopher Demers @ChristopherinHR. Thank you for spending time with me! Thank you for putting out good content for your colleagues.

I appreciate what you do for our profession. Keep up the good work and keep putting good information out there for the rest of us! Your labor for our profession is not in vain!

If you want to know other ways you can demonstrate appreciation for your colleagues, you can contact me at and

Are You Ready For 2014?

The New Year is here but are you well rested? With all of the activities you hosted or participated in during the holidays were you able to decompress from 2013? When you made your New Year’s resolutions did any of them involve taking better care of yourself and a work-life balance? The most important component of HR and OD are the employees. If you don’t take care of yourself you’re no good to your employer. In an effort to put yourself first in 2014 your top five New Year’s resolutions should read something like this:

1. Take better care of myself
2. Work-life balance
3. Take better care of myself
4. Work-life balance
5. Take better care of myself

As a generation millennials understand the importance of a work-life balance. This post is really for my peers in generation X and baby-boomers. The order in your life should be you, family, friends, and last but not least work.

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3 + Reasons Why Employees Aren’t Loyal

In my next few posts, I’ll address the issue of employee loyalty: why employees aren’t loyal, what is employee engagement, and whether tracking employee engagement is useful.

Earlier this year, someone told me that a potential supervisor implied if they promoted this individual they expected this individual to stay with the company out of loyalty for promoting them. If this was 1983, I wouldn’t be surprised. But it’s not. In 2013, staying with a company out of obligation is a belief very few employees hold. Loyalty in the workplace today looks different from what it looked like 30 years ago. Companies are not as loyal to their employees as they were in 1983. In 2013, many companies are so loyal to the bottom line, they don’t have time to be loyal to their employees.

I’m not suggesting that supervisors think the worst of their employees. There are many employees that will stay with a company out of obligation, but that number is small. With everything that has happened in the world economy since 2008, employers shouldn’t expect many employees to be loyal. Times have changed, and each generation is less loyal than the one before it. Gen Xers are not the loyal employees that Baby Boomers were. I don’t think the notion of being loyal crosses the mind of Gen Yers.

During a government shutdown, government sequestration, mass layoffs, and Detroit,MI and Jefferson County, AL filing bankruptcy, who has time to be loyal? For years, employees have been forced to do more work with no increase in pay. With all of this going on, who is going to be loyal to their employer? When your livelihood is at stake, you’re not going to stay with a company just to be loyal.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t have a problem with being loyal to a company. If your company treats you well, why not be loyal? On the other hand, being loyal out of a sense of obligation can be professional and — more importantly — financial suicide. Even if companies weren’t so self-absorbed, the world’s economic climate is such that it’s every man and woman for themselves.

In 2013, company loyalty does exist. But I wouldn’t suggest any supervisor to expect it. Finding loyal employees is difficult because there is so much dysfuntionality in today’s workplaces. It’s really as simple as this: if you want high employee retention, treat people right. Employees are loyal to companies when companies are loyal to employees. There’s no magic bullet for this, just plain ‘ole common sense.

If you want to add to this list, have a question or comment leave it below or email me at

A Multi-Generational Workforce

Today’s workforce poses problems for managers because it consists of three generations: baby boomers (boomers), generation X (Xer’s) and generation Y (millennials). The recent economic collapse has kept many boomers in the workforce longer than they expected. It has also forced many boomers back into the workforce. Even with all of these boomers in the workforce, most of the workforce comprises Xer’s and millennials.

It is important for managers to know the strengths and weaknesses of each person they manage. In our current workforce, some of the strengths and weaknesses of employees stem from when they were born.

Boomers will make any necessary sacrifices to get the job done. They will sacrifice personal time, family ect. Xer’s will also make the necessary sacrifices to get the job done. While willing to make the necessary sacrifices Xer’s will also aim for a work life balance. They are not as willing as boomers to sacrifice their personal time, family etc. Millennials have an attitude of entitlement. The world revolves around them. Not to say they aren’t hard workers but for the most part millennials are not willing to sacrifice any of their time for something that does not directly benefit them.

Managers have to be aware of the tendencies of each generation. Boomers have been in the workforce longer and possess a wealth knowledge and wisdom. Millennials are tech savvy but lack wisdom and experience. Xer’s have the benefit of being between the two. They have been in the workforce long enough to have gained some wisdom and are young enough to be tech savvy.

Boomers will not embrace change as easily as Xer’s and millennials. Managers should not allow the unwillingness of boomers to affect their ability to glean wisdom from the older generation. Managers also have to help millennials realize that technology is not the solution to every problem. Xer’s have both problems, some of them are slow adapters and others think technology has a solution for every problem that exists.

Regardless of which generation you are a part of, make sure you consider the tendencies of the other generations. The following link provides a more indepth look into managing boomers, Xer’s and millennials .
If you have a question or comment leave it below or email me at

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