Trust in the Workplace — Do You Have it?

In the staffing profession, we have the unique opportunity to listen to employers and employees of all sizes, in all industries at delicate cross roads. Whether an employee is considering making a move, or an employer is going to add or upgrade the competencies of its workforce, the majority of the time trust is an underlying issue that is commonly ignored. Repairing trust after organizational failures can and does positively impact moral, culture, customer experiences, and ultimately the bottom-line.

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Happy New Year!

The beginning of a new year is always exciting. It finds me looking forward to the opportunities and challenges ahead and, of course, setting those daunting Big Hairy Audacious Goals. Raising the bar and committing to tangible results is a healthy exercise for our team, as it provides a road map for the things we hope to accomplish in 2012 and beyond. One of the tools we use is a tactical map. Check it out and see if it can help you reach some of your business goals this year.

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Who Do You Go To?

Last month we talked about career derailers and this month is dedicated to advancing your career by aligning your relationships with your goals. Whether you are building a work team, a network of trusted advisors and / or selecting mentors it’s essential that you choose wisely. Ironically, a friend, advisor and customer (all the same person) invited me to a luncheon last month that tied into this topic. The key note was a Wall Street veteran Carla Harris, one of the most successful and respected women in business today. Carla shared her strategies for thriving in the workplace at the Women’s Fund of Omaha’s 11th Annual Fall Luncheon.

I’m honored to pass on my interpretation of Carla’s “pearls of wisdom”.

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Career Derailers

What’s a career derailer? Imagine or remember your first promotion. First, you got the team leader role, then a better title and a raise. Then on to department manager — you are on top of the world — then something happens. Questions are asked about whether you can think strategically, whether you have what it takes. That fast track career has stalled, or worse yet, fallen off the tracks – a career derailed.

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Be the CEO of Your Career

Your organization’s success depends upon its people and effectively utilizing human capital. Aligning competencies, culture, and direction is everyone’s responsibility.

Last week I facilitated a workshop titled, “Be the CEO of Your Career”. The audience was predominately senior level developers who are navigating through the expert career ladder versus the management career ladder. It’s my belief that all technical professionals, including accounting / finance, IT / IS, sales, marketing, HR, etc. are confronted with the technical versus management dilemma. How do you know which is right for you?

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TEAM BUILDING: Is it Worth Your Time?

Sometimes team building exercises are a success and others are a huge waste of time. The key is to choose the right game or exercise that aligns with your objectives. If done correctly, professional development, clear role clarification, improved collaboration, or better communication are a few benefits that you may achieve.

The place to start in choosing a team building exercise is to undertake an evaluation. If there are problems, you need to determine the causes. If there are no problems, you should identify how best to maintain or improve performance. A poorly chosen exercise can actually waste everyone’s time and have a negative effect.

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Got Talent? Why It’s Important to Build Bench Strength

Recently, I’ve been asked to discuss “bench strength” with a few organizations. All companies need to develop the next generation of leaders if they want to survive, let alone thrive. Unfortunately, few companies master succession management. In a study by the Corporate Leadership Council, 72 percent of companies predict they’ll have an increasing number of leadership vacancies during the next few years. At the same time, 76 percent are “less than confident” in their abilities to adequately staff these positions.

The few companies that apply rigor to identifying and grooming their top players enjoy retention and increased bottom lines. So let’s discuss the practices of an effective succession process. There are three initial steps:

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Professional Sector Staffing Shifts into High Gear

We have a “spring” in our step! The professional sector of the staffing industry is experiencing a significant uptick. On a whole, the economy gained 216,000 jobs in March, according to a recent CNNMoney.com article, and the unemployment rate continues to drop now at 8.8%, the lowest level since March 2009.

As a thermometer of the local economy, Aureus Group has good news to share as well. Year-to-date we have obtained 22% more search assignments and special project “temp” orders than in 2010. Our contingent workforce is up 42% and we have already placed 32% more people in full-time positions than in 2010.

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Aureus Group Annual Hiring Trends Survey

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported in January that job gains exceeded job losses for the first time since December 2007. In fact, job losses have steadily decreased from a high of 8.5 million in December 2008 to the lowest level since the series began in 1992. Is this a sure sign the economy is on a steady uphill climb? With unemployment stubbornly planted at 9% according to the most recent BLS report, 2011 hiring is on the minds of many.

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