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The blog.


How to Properly Resign as an Executive

After deciding to forge a new career path, resigning from the current position is naturally one of the next steps. As an executive, the utmost importance falls on how their departure transpires and how it affects the company in the long haul.

Appropriate transparency and confidence will define how any executive leaves their current role. Naturally, as a leader departs, followers begin to raise suspicion. Being confident in the transition without making vague excuses will alleviate that worrisome feeling that may arise in employees. The reasoning behind such change should be professional and future-centric rather than focused on the specific instances that led to the transition.

An in-person announcement to the organization is the best way to break news for any leave. Falling in line with transparency, this method allows current employees the chance to ask questions, witness organizational support and positivity and, most importantly, observe the raw emotion that is paired with any goodbye. No matter the circumstances, good or bad, executives will be able to better gauge the reaction of their team and quash any potential rumors or “this is what I heard” scenarios.

Leaving the company in good standing should be at the forefront of any executive’s mind after deciding to depart from their current role. While two weeks’ notice may be the norm, more time may be needed to ensure adequate measures and plans are in place to set the company up for future success. Whether it be two weeks or two months, a proper go-ahead plan should be established and communicated to support the company that such executive was once a part of.

What’s more important – the degree or the experience?

With degrees becoming more and more common, the experience that a candidate brings to the position has taken the front seat in the hiring process. Needless to say, a degree does offer valuable skill important to a candidate’s resume.

The significance of completing a degree speaks to the candidate’s ability to be successful in various life and job-related aspects such as multi-tasking, social interactions, and ethical dilemmas. While the degree title and focus furthers the intellectual aspect of a candidate, it does not necessarily correlate to how much success a person will have within their position.

Experience is considerably the most valuable aspect a candidate can possess. The real-world experience that is transferable to the position in mind, provides far deeper insight as to how the employee will perform in a certain situation rather than the assumption of taught skills in the classroom.

However, a degree should not be any less valuable. Many entry qualifications for open positions specifically highlight the need of a degree to advance. Where the experience begins to overshadow a degree is through the interview process and the ability of a candidate to equate actual experiential moments to the demands of the job.

While the accomplishment of completing the route of higher education is still highly regarded in job recruiting, having first-hand knowledge of the qualifications that are to be expected has started to become the frontrunner when choosing between candidates with virtually similar resumes.

What defines a high-performing organization?

The ability for an organization to perform adequately doesn’t begin with goals and end with results. High performance is paired with strategic organizational structure and goal output.

Company leadership paves the way towards effectiveness. Through strong leaders, comes engaged and passionate employees focused on the organization’s goals and values. Leadership must have the understanding of the importance of acknowledging strengths of employees and building through weaknesses. This cultural design will, in turn, result in employees understanding their role within the company.

Effective organizational processes and procedures also allows for businesses to see high-performing results. From HR practices to marketing tactics, organizations must have established processes to yield wanted results. Granted, not every position allows for a clean step-by-step process. Solidifying a clear path towards company goals will provide employees and management the proper tools to focus on success should a situation arise that may initially detract from that.

The ability to react appropriately to change and complications sets strong organizations apart from the rest. While laying out an ideal plan of action provides the proper support for success, when things don’t fall according to plan, it is important to have a system that adapts. Growing a staff and culture that is able to manage a shift in plans, shows the strength and longevity of a company’s future.

Is your company brand more than just a logo?

In today’s society, attention is critical for success. If a company is unable to grasp and maintain the attention of customers, there is significant risk in getting lost in the mix of a hundred other businesses designed to provide their necessary services. The importance behind building a relationship beyond the brand name should be at the forefront of a company’s business model.

To go beyond a title and design on the company letterhead, there must be support, guidance and belief to push towards overall success. A company should be recognized by what it can provide both internally to its employees and externally to the community.

Offering the opportunity for employees to “buy in” to the process and ultimately, the success of the brand will translate to customers buying in as well. When employees are satisfied with the organization they are a part of and its values, it is much easier to attract customers who are satisfied with what the company offers as well. Employee benefits, incentives, and recognition opens the door for employees to create a cycle of positivity as they begin to recognize the support given, appreciate the opportunity and project the company values into customers.

Externally, standing out to your customers should also be more than the obvious. It should be supported through interactions, consistency, availability and appreciation. Having a brand that guarantees pleasant interactions, consistently provides a satisfactory product and/or experience, goes beyond the status quo. Acknowledging the dedication of loyal customers is guaranteed to maintain consumer share of mind.

While other companies offer the same products and services, going above and beyond for both customers and employees, will help the company become a brand, distinguishing itself from the competition and paving the way toward a tenured future.

Employees, when is it time to walk away? Employers, do you see the signs?

At any moment in your life, knowing when to walk away is difficult. Whether it be a professional opportunity or current career path, recognizing the signs of when to continue on is not always apparent.

From both an employer and employee perspective, the understanding of betterment for the future may be clouded by current situations. Once employees begin to recognize a needed change, their production is also affected tasking employers to take notice and recognize the same signs.

A lack of passion is a key indicator that it is time to move on. While it is completely normal to feel a lack of purpose occasionally, a continuation of that feeling shows a sure sign that the current position is not right. This demeanor is noticeable by both employees and employers as it affects task outcome and workplace morale.

Recognizing an inability to advance professionally signals a time to move on. As an employer, the potential of all employees should be top of mind and, if an individual has reached their full efficacy, it is important to allow them to continue toward maximum growth and encourage forward progression. On the contrast, as an employee, if the main focus is continued advancement and that is no longer possible, recognizing how talents can be utilized elsewhere within the company will prove to be more beneficial in the long run.

If there is not significant growth being seen, other opportunities should be considered. Employees should continuously bring amelioration to their department and the organization. Whether it be through workplace culture, task production or leadership, an employee should positively impact and strengthen the workplace. Conversely, an organization should do the same for its employees by supporting their needs, encouraging their progress and compensating accordingly. If a position or workplace growth is stunted, it may be time to walk away.

Through the looking glass: prospecting a client through a different lens

The process to recruit a new hire must be able to accurately gauge their potential success based on the objectives of the company and the available position, whether it be through an in-person, phone or video interview. This can be achieved through either a two or five-step process.

The use of a two-step recruitment process is quick and simple. Screening the resume followed by an in-person interview is the best way to find a suitable candidate in the least amount of time since it requires little back and forth between the organization and potential employee. Two-step hiring also allows for a candidate’s on-boarding process to be streamlined in a time-efficient manner.

This type of recruitment process is best suited for quick hiring needs and helps distinguish warm versus hot leads. However, this process lacks the substance required to properly vet a large pool of seemingly quality recruits since the speed of hiring for an open position poses threats of under-qualified applicants.

In contrast, the five-step hiring system begins with a resume screen and is followed by a phone interview, video interview, in-person interview and finishes with on-the-job skill testing. This process is best used for positions that require deeper skillsets than average, allowing for interviewees to highlight their abilities over a lengthened period of time.

The five-step system is also ideal for positions with large applicant pools as each step in the hiring process will naturally separate top candidates from average candidates and grants hiring managers the time needed to properly evaluate a candidate’s potential and organizational fit. While this process allows for an in-depth evaluation of a future employee, it can be deemed too lengthy, causing candidates to lose interest and abandon the hiring process all together.

Not all hiring methods are the same, choose one that works best for the organization that will set you apart from your competition.

Hiring Quality Talent

Believe it or not, identifying a quality hire goes beyond a stacked resume or great recommendations. In fact, there are actually measurable calculations associated with quality hires based off of the goals of the company filling the position.

Quality hires can be attributed to the use of performance-based objectives established during the hiring process. Rather than identifying surface level qualities that must be met in the recruitment stage, such as education level or experience, direct objectives for identified success should be highlighted with goals and expectations being the prime focus.

Rather than a bulleted list of duties, make the job compelling to begin the employee “buy-in” process. Turn the description into an impactful story allowing for any potential candidate to begin to see the impact they can make. This will help garner strong candidates, fully interested in what the position has to offer and how they can be of service.

Focus on the past rather than the present. If a new hire is able to equate their past experiences with one comparable to those listed in the performance-based job description, they will have increased motivation to continue that trend of success as they already possess the skills and accomplishments to do so.

It is important to evaluate the quality of the candidate, pre-hire and post-hire. Before the candidate is offered the position, focus on past accomplishments and understand how they can support overall goals and objectives. This same process should be used post-hire as well. Once the candidate is on the job, circle back to the interview process and the agreements that were reached and experiences that were mentioned – this will help categorize employees as quality hires or can pinpoint weaknesses that need to be addressed.

How Giving Back Influences The Bottom Line

The holiday spirit is in the air, with businesses focusing on how they can give back to the community. While acts of gratitude positively affect personal health and happiness, there is also a strong correlation between charitable giving and boosting the bottom line.

By focusing on an impactful community cause, companies are able to connect on a deeper level with customers, partners and employees who share the same values to make a difference, opening the door for new and meaningful business ventures to arise beyond just the holiday season.

Beyond the public relations advantage that the spirit of giving provides, tax advantages also affect the bottom line. With a certain amount donated, organizations are able to claim a charitable deduction offering businesses the opportunity to give back with money not being a major deterrent to do so.

Taking a few moments out of the work day to volunteer at a local food bank or donate time to deliver presents to less fortunate children increases company visibility within the community and provides employees a unique insight into the culture that the organization was built on.

Giving of time and financial support to those in need is a simple and easy reminder to be grateful. When given the chance, employees develop a sense of accomplishment for their service and appreciation for the position they are in and the company providing the opportunity. Morale increases and the desire to work hard for a company that believes in helping those in need grows a bit stronger.

The Advantages of Job Shadowing

Having the opportunity to shadow senior leadership when beginning a career or transitioning to a new position provides countless benefits, specifically, the resources and skillsets that are available in a shortened timeframe. But, why choose shadowing versus another on-boarding system when welcoming a new employee?

Shadowing is most important when the position is best learned through seeing or doing. The new hire is able to take in a plethora of information that, if trained through a different method, might be overlooked or not mentioned. It provides a “hands-on” approach to a position that may require a “hands-on” mindset.

The ability to learn firsthand from leaders who have forged their own path to success is second to none. The time spent with senior employees opens to the door to understand the ins and outs of the company culture, fine-tune and continue to develop professionally, and gain expert insights into the business. Shadowing also expedites the on-boarding process as new hires begin to acquaint themselves with the business sooner.

Job shadowing provides a behind-the-curtain look at the expectations of job duties, key deliverables needed, and the interactions between coworkers and peers and coworkers and senior management. This provides an excellent chance for senior management to recognize if processes, job descriptions or culture needs to be restructured or reevaluated.

New Year, New Focus

With the new year right around the corner most people are focused on personal improvement, new goals or beginning new habits. But this year could be the year for you to take the time to make positive resolutions to refocus on career advancement.

In 2018, invest energy into choosing realistic goals that require going outside of your comfort zone and pushing the limits. Acquire a new skill that may fill a gap for lateral movement and seek to improve upon areas that need more attention. Putting yourself in the best possible position to achieve, puts you in control of the outcome.

Implement helpful tricks to organize your life, workspace and mindset. Start each day of the new year with a fresh mind by clearing out the clutter that life can sometimes bring and figuring out a way to keep yourself efficient and productive. Prioritize small moments of organization, whether it be through keeping a steady workout regime to clear your mind or ensuring that your desk is tidy at the end of the day.

Find balance. Health and happiness go hand-in-hand with achievement and hard work. When you believe in the work that you do and wake up enjoying the life you live, success will follow.