Epicor HCM – Human capital management solution for school

Epicor HCM – HR Management Software Today’s economy demands a more proactive, strategic role for the HR department. As competition for critical resources intensifies, managers, employees and candidates are demanding more from HR and human resource information systems (HRIS), moving beyond self-service to secure  direct access to relevant information and processes whether in the office or on […]

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Workers Turn to Social Networking to Find Jobs

(From Tech Radar) — More than two out of three UK workers (70%) are using social networks to find out about potential opportunities according to a new report. The “UK Social Talent Management” report from Taleo Corporation found that employees use social networks to look outside rather than inside the company. With two thirds (66%) of respondents using social networks to enhance their career prospects outside of their current company while less than half (45%) use them to look for internal opportunities. For passive job seekers, social networks are valuable for finding out about career opportunities, and keeping an eye on social networks is seen as an easy, quick way to identify available jobs within their sector. The survey findings show: Ultimately, employers run the risk of losing top employees by failing to utilise these networks by choosing to instead rely on intranets and company websites. Office staff are active across a wide range of social tools for professional purposes, with 72 percent of employees using social media at least once a month. More specifically: The report shows that UK businesses need to better understand the potential value of a social talent management strategy. Many companies see social networks as mere distractions for their employees rather than recognising the tremendous opportunity that they represent. Read more.

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WisBusiness: Sustainability is path to profit

(Brian E. Clark, WisBusiness.com) The companies that emerge strongest from the current recession won’t be those that simply slash their payrolls to save money. Rather, says author and former Yahoo executive Tim Sanders, the winners will be those that continue to innovate and take steps to become more sustainable and environmentally benign. Companies must “rethink the manufacturing process to reduce the impact on our environment and to create a business that can grow indefinitely,” said Sanders, who will speak May 19 at the Manufacturing Matters conference in Milwaukee. The conference, hosted by the Wisconsin Manufacturing Extension Partnership, will feature two keynote speakers (including Sanders) plus 20 workshops offering insights and best practices on a wide range of topics, including business transformation leadership, export opportunities, lean manufacturing, marketing, online collaboration and talent management. New this year is a workshop track devoted to sustainability in products and processes. Sanders said it’s wrong to think sustainability is a “cost driver and a profit reducer.” ( Read the entire article.)

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What Sales Teams Want

In order to determine what salespeople and sales managers want, we must first determine what they need to know. As markets, models, and buyer expectations have changed, so have the necessary knowledge and skills for the successful salesperson and sales manager. No longer are product knowledge, persuasiveness, and persistence enough. To truly understand what successful sales team members need to know and do, we asked them with our sales training research. ASTD Research surveyed 210 sales trainers and 179 salespeople during the summer. Overwhelmingly, respondents said that they value sales training and believe it to be very or extremely important. When asked about the skills required to be successful in their jobs, survey respondents indicated these top five: Respondents were also asked what kind of knowledge is required to be successful in their jobs. Valuable knowledge areas include: Accenture research found that although 146 of 244 executives from six countries said that the sales team plays the most prominent role in their company’s long- and short-term success, 41 percent of managers and executives from more than 2,500 sales organizations said that their salespeople are performing below expectations (Nightingale Conant/Andy Miller). This backs up our thought that we need a new approach, one in which the sales development and training needs of sales teams are viewed through a strategic and holistic lens. To be successful, this approach requires the alignment of all aspects of talent management, skills development, and sales process execution. Revenue goals must be aligned with business outcomes and business processes that are deliberately designed to allow salespeople to develop productive customer relationships and deliver appropriate solutions. Further, salespeople must be equipped and empowered to make decisions that benefit both the buying and selling organizations, and sales managers must be given both the time and the training to coach and develop their sales teams.

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Welcome to the ASTD Books blog!

Hi, and welcome to the ASTD Press books blog! I am sure you want to know a bit more about this blog, so I got some time to sit down and interview myself and try to answer some of your questions. TE: Hi, thanks for taking the time to give me this interview. Why a blog about ASTD Press books? TE: You’re welcome. I think of this blog as an opportunity to connect the ASTD Press audience a little more closely and personally with what we do at the Press. I’d to talk about what we are doing, the books and Infolines that we are working on and have published, what’s going on with some of our authors, and perhaps a little something about what’s going on in publishing in general. I’d also like to get the chance to hear a bit more from the ASTD books audience. What kinds of books would they like to see? What do they think about some of the books that we have published and why? Also, what are their opinions about certain controversial and/or high-profile topics in the field of workplace learning and performance? For instance, expect a post in the near future that talks about the differences between ASTD’s definition of talent management and Larry Israelite’s definition. (ASTD Press will be publishing Larry’s book on the topic in January 2010.) TE: What is ASTD Press? TE: ASTD Press is the American Society for Training & Development’s publishing department, and we publish 18-24 books and 12 Infolines per year. We are a team of nine great people who find interesting and talented authors and topics; work with these authors to hone their books and Infolines; manage publishing projects, which involves editing, proofreading, working with designers on text and cover designs, and working with printers; and disseminate books through a wide variety of channels. (There’s more to it, but I could probably go on all day.) Our work ranges from the big-picture scale of book ideas and content that will be meaningful and valuable to our audience to the itty-bitty details of widows, orphans, and misplaced commas that mean the difference between quality we can be proud of and, well, something not so high in quality. TE: Who am I? TE: My name is Tora Estep. I am a senior associate editor with ASTD Press, and I have been with ASTD for almost seven years. I’ve worked as the editor of Infoline, written some (I think) funny articles for T+D, and managed book projects. My proudest accomplishment at ASTD was working as project manager with Elaine Biech on The ASTD Handbook for Workplace Learning Professionals, to which I also contributed two chapters. The quality of this book is phenomenal, from the content to the package. In working on this book, I probably read the whole thing at least three times (it’s 928 pages so that took a chunk out of my day) and was amazed again and again at the incisiveness of the content and the consistency of the themes that emerged from so many disparate writers. That’s a real tribute to Elaine as well as the 60 authors who contributed to the book.

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Washington Press Corps Veteran Ilyse Veron Takes Helm of The Public Manager

The Public Manager, a quarterly journal about empowering government and developing leaders, announces an editorial change in the Spring 2011 issue. Washington press corps veteran Ilyse Veron will take over as editor, according to the journal’s publisher Carrie Blustin, while longtime editor Warren Master will assume a new role as Editor-at-Large. “For eleven years Warren Master kept readers on the leading-edge with innovative public management articles,” said Blustin. “We look forward to his continued contributions as Editor-at-Large, anchoring interviews for the journal’s new podcast series, sharing insights in his blog, Agile Bureaucracy, and presenting at our events.” “This change brings new opportunities to provide more timely content and perspective,” Ms. Blustin continued. “Ilyse Veron brings years of award-winning experience covering media, technology, and public affairs, including actions of every federal department and agendas of multiple presidents. And, she’s done it for CQ and The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, among others.” Master’s final spring issue centers on public managers’ preparations for climate change. Ms. Veron’s first issue, due out in June, will offer a forum on 21st century government – its technology, performance, and talent management. The summer issue of the journal will launch Ms. Veron’s new column, Editorial Perspective, and other features. Ms. Veron joined The Public Manager after years of producing events, programs, and reports with MacNeil-Lehrer Productions, and she has already begun blogging and podcasting along with Mr. Master on management issues at www.thepublicmanager.org. Ms. Veron’s career began at The Brookings Institution, followed by years at Congressional Quarterly. In the mid-90s, she served as principal researcher on The System, a book by David Broder and Haynes Johnson. From 1995-2002 she reported for the NewsHour on national and business news, earning an Emmy award for coverage of the Justice Department’s case against Microsoft and recognition from the UCLA Anderson School of Management. Since 2002 Ms. Veron has specialized in outreach and project management, working on citizen events and broadcasts such as PBS’ By the People and “Bernanke on the Record,” and she has developed content on various media platforms for nonpartisan nonprofits with a federal focus. Her freelance bylines have run on Scripps Howard Wire Service, Wired.com, Foxnews.com, and elsewhere, most recently in Education Week’s Digital Directions magazine. About The Public Manager The Public Manager is a unique, editorially independent quarterly journal about government leadership that works. Focused on empowering and developing leaders, it publishes ideas of experienced professionals about critical public management issues including budgeting and accountability, technology and innovation, and the people who make it happen. Additionally, with events and web postings, it fosters a community for current, former and future managers to share best practices and resources regarding federal challenges and professional development. The Public Manager allies with the Partnership for Public Service, GovLoop, Young Government Leaders, the Graduate School, the American Society for Public Administration, and others who serve career public servants. The Public Manager is published by The Bureaucrat, Inc., a nonprofit controlled affiliate of the American Society for Training & Development (ASTD). ASTD is the world’s largest association dedicated to the training and development field whose members work in thousands of public and private sector organizations. The Bureaucrat, Inc. maintains its own corporate officer and Board of Director structure to guide The Public Manager.

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Walt McFarland Named Chair-Elect of ASTD Board of Directors

Walt McFarland, Founder of Windmill Human Performance, LLC, and former executive at Booz Allen Hamilton, will serve as the 2012 Chair-Elect of the ASTD Board of Directors and will assume the role of Board Chair in 2013. Mr. McFarland created Windmill Human Performance after completing a one year sabbatical during which he studied human and organizational performance, multi-cultural talent management, and organizational change at several institutions and organizations including Oxford and Harvard universities and three Fortune 300 organizations. Prior to taking his sabbatical, Mr. McFarland built a $125 million Human Resource (HR) and Learning consulting business in the federal market for Booz Allen Hamilton. He has consulted for the Internal Revenue Service, Department of Homeland Security, the FBI, Department of Defense, and National Institutes of Health among others. Prior to joining Booz Allen, Mr. McFarland led the HR and Change Management business of Hay Management Consultants where his clients included the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, Marriott, and the Federal Reserve System. He served as an employee of the Federal Government, with his last role as a Special Assistant to the Secretary of Defense.

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Top Human Capital Blogs in 2015

What do talent development professionals in human capital care about? Do you see any themes? Here are the top 10 blog articles from ATD’s Human Capital Community: In 2015 we learned that harvesting an organization with a strong learning culture to support high performance starts with its leaders. When a leader values learning, it becomes contagious for the people around to strive for more. Redefining and understanding a new path to performance management, as well as adopting a positive workplace and the neurological connection, also were top priorities for organizations in 2015. Look out for more articles and content on improving your work culture and managing talent next year. Leave a comment with other topics you’d like to see covered as well next year! If you haven’t already or you’re still thinking about how to start the 2016, take a look at the ATD Talent Management Handbookfor an overview of these topics and more.

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Tools for Your Success

ASTD is always looking for the next big topic in the field of learning and performance. We are constantly working to prove the value of learning, to get ahead of challenges related to talent management and the skills gap, and to define competencies for learning professionals to use as guides in their careers. Having the right skill set is imperative to your overall effectiveness in the learning field. ASTD wants you to have all of the information, data, research, tools, and resources you need to possess a strong knowledge of training design and delivery, business essentials for learning professionals, and management skills for running the learning function sin your business. Listen to Jennifer and John.

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The Economic Downturn: Learning’s Time to Shine

How can there be light during a downturn? By using their expertise, workplace learning and performance (WLP) professionals have been given a torch, to help their organization survive the downturn and allow them to emerge in a stronger competitive position when the economy recovers. In the current economic downturn, organizations have been forced to use cost cutting strategies. Departmental budgets are being trimmed, with the learning function being no exception. Learning and development functions are not only being pushed to economize spending on learning activities, but to simultaneously continue to build critical skills and knowledge. A new report by ASTD and i4cp, Learning in Tough Economic Times, indicates that between a fifth and a quarter of respondents said that, to a high or very high extent, the down economy has had a negative impact on each of the following: However, there has been a benefit which WLP professionals need to monopolize, with nearly four-in-ten respondents saying that their firm placed a stronger emphasis on learning during this downturn than previous downturns. Organizations that place a stronger emphasis on learning were also more likely to point to higher market performance, highlighting the bottom-line benefit. Conversely, reducing learning resources during tough economic times was associated with poor market performance. Organizations appear to be learning from previous experiences and realize that eliminating learning opportunities can be crippling for an organization. One respondent to the survey used an impactful analogy to describe this from a previous experience: “turning off the educational tap leaves a company dehydrated with no ability to grow – no way to give the company nutrients”. Experts agree that during these economically difficult times, learning professionals have the opportunity to show the strategic business value of workplace learning and performance. Talent management has never been more important than during this economic downturn, and learning professionals have a significant influence over its success, with expertise in competency management, skills assessment, and organizational development. Thus, the onus is on WLP professionals to demonstrate learning’s effect on developing talent in organizations by ensuring there are processes in place to find, hire, and keep talent. WLP professionals need to partner and collaborate with organizational leaders to demonstrate how learning can positively impact corporate performance and ensure survival through the economic downturn and allow them to emerge in a strong competitive position when the economy recovers. Learning needs to focus on what impacts the bottom line and is business crucial, and a direct cause-and-effect relationship needs to be evident between learning initiatives and results. Source: Learning in Tough Economic Times (ASTD/i4cp) Click here to learn more about ASTD Research.

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The Countries Producing the Most Future Leaders

(From Forbes) — Which countries have the most promising crops of leaders coming up through the ranks today, and where in the world are there more young people likely to develop into leaders tomorrow? And how can leadership be measured at all? SHL, a U.K.-based talent management consulting firm, has just released a study that aims to provide answers to those questions. A giant in the world of employee assessments, SHL has more than 10,000 clients in over 100 countries, ranging from consulting firms Deloitte and KPMG to airlines like Cathay Pacific, multinationals like Unilever and public sector organizations like the United Nations and the European Personnel Selection Office, which does the hiring for the European Commission. This year, executives at SHL decided to mine data from past employee assessments and try to shed some light on the leadership potential in the many countries where it works. This morning it released a list of the countries it believes have the greatest percentage of effective leaders, and those that it sees as most likely to develop leaders within the next three to five years. The country with the most leaders today: Hong Kong, which the report treats as a separate country, though it is an administrative region of mainland China. The country with the most future leaders: Mexico. SHL used data from 1.05 million client surveys that it gathered from 2006 through 2011, to come up with its list. It focused on eight different skill areas to measure leadership capability: initiating activity and deciding, supporting and cooperating, interacting with and presenting to others, analyzing and interpreting data, creating and conceptualizing ideas, organizing and executing plans, adapting and coping with others, and finally, performing and achieving. Read more.

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Survey: The Best Companies for Leaders Demonstrate How to Weather Economic Storms and Prepare for the Upturn

(PHILADELPHIA, BUSINESS WIRE) The world’s Best Companies for Leaders-among the world’s most respected-are focused on developing leaders who will not only survive and thrive in the current financial crisis but will be well positioned for growth once the economy improves. The 2008 Best Companies for Leaders survey-conducted by management consultancy Hay Group and Chief Executive Magazine-identifies the top 20 best-in class companies (see below) as well as the attributes that make these companies known for great leadership. The research suggests a number of best practices to help organizations and their leaders navigate the significant challenges brought on by the economic downturn as well as key tips to prepare for the upswing. Surviving the downturn When asked what organizations value the most in leaders, 83 percent of the best in class organizations as compared to others said “execution”. Organizations value leaders who can achieve results through others. These leaders create a climate in which people know exactly what is expected of them. In ideal times, the survey results showed, people value authoritative and democratic styles of leadership in comparison to the other four styles of coercive, affiliative, pacesetting and coaching. In tough economic times, employees’ desire more communication and clarity around goals. They want their leaders to become more visible and to be leading from the front. Typical leadership styles which accomplish this include authoritative with some coercive and pacesetting when needed. During tough economic times, best-in-class companies create clarity, encourage development, drive accountability and recognize successful leaders. 65 percent of the top twenty companies on the list hold senior managers accountable for commitments versus 36 percent for all others. 63 percent create a sense of purpose for employees by communicating values versus 43 percent for all other companies. 45 percent honor leaders within the organization versus 32 percent for all other companies. In addition, 62 percent of respondents indicated that matrixed roles are increasing in their organizations. Managing in a matrix poses its own set of challenges, including the need for collaboration, creating a cohesive team, not having authority over resources, managing conflicts over differing agendas, goals or priorities, and minimizing confusion over roles, decision-making and accountability. Hay Group says that there will be an increased emphasis on the skills needed to work in a matrix environment. Relationship building, influencing, adaptability, interpersonal skills and collaboration skills will all be more important in the future workplace. “The conventional top-down chain of command is yielding to decision-making that’s spread across business units, executive teams with far-reaching authority and other activities that reflect a brave, new, flat business world,” said Rick Lash, Hay Group’s national practice leader for leadership and talent. Preparing for the upswing The Hay Group/Chief Executive survey reveals that the top 20 best companies for leaders make leadership development a priority. 70 percent of the top 20 companies say they have a formal process to identify individuals for leadership roles, versus 37 percent of all companies. 65 percent of companies say that talent management is driven by a clear business strategy versus 39 percent of all other companies. 55 percent have formal programs to accelerate leader development versus 34 percent of all other companies. “What we have been seeing in these uncertain times is that organizations are not pulling back on their development of leaders, primarily because organizations recognize they don’t have the depth of leadership they need to meet future demands,” said Lash. “This year we have seen the best in class organizations become more focused, investing their assessment and development on their best leadership talent, rather than providing across the board development for everyone,” he said. “The Best Companies for Leaders are making serious investments in leadership development,” said Lash. “Development opportunities include special projects, assignments, and online training programs.” Hay Group is a management consulting firm that works with leaders to transform strategy into reality. We develop talent, organize people to be more effective and motivate them to perform at their best. Our focus is on making change happen and helping people and organizations realize their potential. We have over 2600 employees working in 85 offices in 47 countries. Our clients are from the private, public and not-for profit sectors, across every major industry. ( Read entire release.)

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Strategic Sales Training

It’s time for some new thinking in sales training. Clearly, there is a need for more comprehensive approaches to increasing individual competency and building sales capacity. The current approach just isn’t working. Let’s look at some of the newest trends in sales and sales management, and how they can help: Talent management. Studies have shown that a deliberate approach to talent management, including the recruitment, selection, orientation, engagement, and retention of top sales performers, results in annual sales force turnover of less than 10 percent (BPT Partners). Top sales organizations focus keenly on the proper identification and selection of new sales team members who have the best fit for building the sales team. That means they fit withing the sales culture, selling system, and types of products being sold. S kills development. Training is conducted with the purpose of helping salespeople increase their knowledge of the business and developing higher level skills, not just focusing on one element of the sales training mix such as product knowledge. Sales leaders coach and develop their team members. Sales process execution. Once equipped with the appropriate knowledge and skills, salespeople must be free to use them. They must be permitted – and expected – to take initiative, use good judgment, and make ethical decisions. Yet, 81 percent of sales organizations say that they don’t have a consultative sales process or are not following the one they have. Foundational selling skills. Skills such as presentation skills, speaking, closing, and follow-up – seem to be less important in today’s selling climate. Don’t get me wrong, salespeople do believe that addressing tough customer requirements, leveraging industry knowledge, and troubleshooting complex business problems provide the right customized experience for the buyer. Salespeople can provide value to buyers through a collaborative approach that co-creates a solution through a complex sales cycle. These approaches require salespeople to develop a wide variety of skills to keep pace with the increasing sophistication of the market and of their offerings. A competency model can help to define and guide that development. A competency model. A sales competency model can serve as an objective foundational starting point that can help to forecast and address knowledge and skills issues that arise due to the changes in markets and demographics. Consider the impact of a younger workforce: Will the only gap be one of turning knowledge into skill? How will companies turn the raw, undeveloped abilities of these younger players into consistently applied talent? What resources do we have for the bright, knowledgeable sales-team member who lacks the interpersonal skills to form lasting relationships with customers? And how will we address the loss of accumulated knowledge and years of experience when our most senior salespeople retire – many of them within the next five to ten years? If the experience of maturing workers is important to a company’s success, how can that experience and expertise be captured and transferred to younger, less experienced workers? Sales trainers, sales managers, and company executives must be more concerned with providing a holistic learning and development progression rather than relying on ad-hoc sales training activities. Furthermore, management must take a more proactive role in promoting the importance of this development and supplying adequate resources. Right now, many companies’ leaders are getting in the way of their sales teams’ success: In response to the ASTD survey, 44 percent said that there was a lack of management buy-in to sales training in their organizations, and 42 percent said that management’s short-sighted focus on results was an obstacle to successful sales training. To engineer world-class sales performance, sales team development must be holistic, all-encompassing, and proactive. There must be a paradigm shift in thinking, from “sales training” to “sales development and performance.” Sales training must quickly and deliberately evolve from a sometime activity by sales managers to an intentional, qualified effort that is directly tied to business strategy and measured according to business outcomes. Its practitioners must be knowledgeable, dedicated, and guided by a competency-based approach. A quantum shift to sales development and performance will bring sales team members together with professional sales trainers to create positive, progressive change by balancing human, ethical, technological, and operational considerations. A competency-based approach can help organizations attain business outcomes and results by focusing on sales-team member knowledge, skills, values, attitudes, and actions in relation to the workplace environment. For example, a competency-based approach allows sales development and performance professionals to work with a hiring manager to select new employees who demonstrate the agreed-upon competencies and expertise required to be successful in the position. These competencies then become part of the performance management system to monitor and evaluate the individual’s performance on the job. Finally, these competencies serve as the basis for guiding future development. A competency-based approach applied to the sales organization can provide a firm foundation by which sales team members can develop. With this approach, development efforts aimed at helping sales team members gain basic skills, technology skills, or even management skills are designed to be immediately applicable. Salespeople must continually develop new skills in order to contribute to the growth of their companies. The only way for companies to grow and compete in a rapidly changing global business environment is to have a skilled sales team that is innovative, understands the economic environment and marketplace, and is driven to excel within their industry. This requires the right people, with the right skills, at the right time. The tools and systems created by a competency-based approach to sales-team development can help organizations overcome many of the barriers cited here and maximize the potential of their sales force.

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Selling Sleuth? The Secrets of Gathering Intelligence

Gathering Intelligence – An Insightful Sales Competency Business is an intelligent game and to win you have to gather intelligence about the marketplace. As a Sales Trainer, you will teach the sales team gathering intelligence as a sales competency. Your sales training program will present them how to define, analyze and learn about competitors, products, customers, distributors, industries, technologies and field research. Much of this teaching analysis should integrate and accentuate your sales management curriculum. It will also show how environmental and macroeconomic intelligence data is used to make financial decisions. Talent management and organizational development strategies are also linked to business intelligence when teaching sales strategies. According to Sales Training Drivers, once you acquire intelligence, you can: So, what do you do once you have gathered the intelligence and want to use it in the classroom? Keep your Competition Close In sales, gathering intelligence will be a big asset to assessing prospect problems. First you can isolate the data to come up with qualifying questions that give you answers to pain challenges and budget constraints. Use the data to create a behavioral question interview that will help you keep the prospect engaged in objective conversation to uncover weaknesses that you can solve with your product or service. Now, you are on a real fact finding mission with your prospect! Implement action oriented blended learning tools into your teach back that keeps the class motivated on isolating and organizing the business resources effectively. The best way to keep the class on their heels is to turn the learning function into a real world test role play! Establish ROI with all sales data points Another hard line sales management learning objective would be to use the intelligence to teach the class how to design an ROI analysis report that will sell a Decision Maker. That will always get the class up and moving! Focus on gathering business intelligence that is of interest to the decision makers you are calling on. For example, look at all the companies in your selling market that have had a sales decrease, but could really benefit from your product or service in terms of making or saving money. Why are they experiencing a sales decrease? Formulate a short ROI analysis outline using resourced intelligence to raise an eyebrow based on what you think you can do for that prospect to increase their revenue, productivity and performance.

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New Study Shows HR Success Is Driving Business Success for 2011

(From marketwire) — Aberdeen Group, a Harte-Hanks Company, has just published a new study exploring the role of HR for organizations in 2011. The report, The 2011 HR Executive’s Agenda: Automation, Innovation, and Growth, was able to create a definitive link between achievement along talent-related measures of success — specifically, higher engagement, deeper bench strength, and improved hiring manager satisfaction — and greater attainment of organizational goals. The top 20% of performers in these key aspects of talent management also achieved greater annual improvement in customer retention and satisfaction by factors of 175% and 83% respectively. Key to these impressive results is the ability to involve the line of business in talent and workforce management activities, as well as the ability to identify roles most critical to the business and plan ahead for those roles. According to Mollie Lombardi, Senior Research Analyst and author of the report, these are positive signs. “Given the recent state of the economy, many in HR have had to take on a more tactical role — doing the blocking and tackling required by reorganizing, or even ramping up for growth. But despite this, more than half of the companies surveyed said that their HR efforts have become increasingly strategic in the past year. We see HR continuing to become a more integral part of the business in the future.” Aberdeen’s report provides more detail into the specific capabilities and technologies that top performers are putting into practice in the coming year, as well as the role of the individual HR executive and the skills that will be needed to fill that role. Complimentary access to this report is available for a limited time due in part by the following underwriters: Taleo, and ELearning!. Read more.

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Most HR Execs Give Mixed Grades to Leadership Pipelines

(From PRWEB) — Human resources and talent management executives give mixed grades for the quality of their own organizations’ leadership pipelines, according to a survey by Right Management. Right Management is the talent and career management expert within ManpowerGroup, the world leader in innovative workforce solutions. Right Management surveyed the 1,262 executives via an online poll and found that there are gaps in the leadership cadres at most companies in North America. In fact, only 6% of organizations were reported to have future leaders identified for all critical roles. Do you have future leaders identified for critical roles in your organization? Yes, for all critical roles 6% Yes, for most but not all critical roles17% Yes, for some critical roles55% No, not for any critical roles22% Read more.

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Mismanaging Workplace Conflicts

(From Human Resource Executive Online) — Handling workplace tensions should be a priority for frontline managers, but many employees believe that their bosses are not up to the job, according to a survey of 2,700 employees released this month by Healthy Companies Intl. in Arlington, Va. Nearly half — 41 percent — of employees responding to the survey think the person to whom they report does not deal well with workplace conflicts. In fact, of 20 managerial behaviors that the survey asked respondents to rate how much they trusted their immediate supervisor to master, handling workplace conflicts ranked last in the survey. Stephen Parker, president of Healthy Companies Intl., says that HR leaders should “first and foremost” model the behavior that best facilitates conflict management: they should “objectively and calmly” summarize the situation for the manager; acknowledge that there are different perspectives and interests in the situation; be honest about their own interests and preferences; and commit to honoring the manager’s decision regardless of the outcome and model team work behavior afterward. “These behaviors make it easier for even the most reluctant boss to manage workplace conflicts,” Parker says. Some managers are in denial because they wrongly think workplace conflicts are a negative reflection on them, he says. However, managing workplace conflict is a core management responsibility, and delaying or avoiding only makes matters worse. Marie Holmstrom, a director of talent management and organization alignment at Towers Watson, says part of the problem is that the role of immediate supervisors has become so complex that managers are now “overloaded” with responsibilities — supervising direct reports, coaching them within talent management programs, completing administrative tasks such as employee-performance reports or expense reports, and also “delivering” on the work-at-hand themselves. “We’ve been working with companies and talking to HR leaders, having them take a hard look at the manager role and redefining the role to better handle workplace conflict,” says Holmstrom, who is based in Charlotte, N.C. “They need to have more time in their day to be able to pay attention to how work gets done, how the team is performing, and to proactively identify potential sources of conflict so they can more easily and quickly mitigate it.” Some of managers’ administrative duties can be offloaded to other players on their team, or they could be given information management software systems, so they don’t have to data crunch or perform other administrative tasks by hand, she says. Managers should also be trained on how to handle workplace conflict. Read more.

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Mid-Level Leadership Crucial to Productivity and Employee Trust

(Atlanta, GA, PRWEB, Feb 10, 2009) The global economic contraction followed by massive lay-offs has left talent management teams reeling. Under this kind of pressure, it is difficult to make informed decisions around choosing the most effective leaders – those who can to do more with less. A new assessment suite from PreVisor, the Supervisor and Front Line Manager Solutions, may supply some answers. Organizations can now have a complete and immediate picture, efficiently and cost effectively through advanced technology, of employees being hired for or moving into mid-level leadership roles. PreVisor, the global leader in employment assessments and talent measurement solutions that connect employment decisions to business results, developed the new products with input from client research partners who were instrumental in providing real-world feedback. These partners reported consistently positive results drawn by comparing the assessment scores to job performance ratings, which validated the effectiveness of the solution. ( Read the entire article.)

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Many workers lack useful job feedback

(Reuters) — One in four workers has a strong sense of how their job contributes to their firm’s goals, said the survey conducted for talent management firm Cornerstone OnDemand and released exclusively to Reuters. And only 18 percent say they have been given useful feedback from managers, the survey found. “In most roles people simply are not having any kind of meaningful communication with a manager about their career,” said Adam Miller, Cornerstone president and chief executive. He said the recession was contributing to the problem. “Probably many managers have felt that their employees are lucky to have a job and, therefore, they shouldn’t complain, they shouldn’t be concerned about their career, they shouldn’t need feedback and they should just do their job,” he said. “When the economy improves, these are going to be the first people to leave,” he said. “They don’t feel valued.” Read more. For more information onemployee engagement,consider attending the sessionTheCarrot Culture: How Recognition TrainingAccelerates Employee Engagement at the ASTD 2010 International Conference and Exposition!

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Majority of US Private Companies Have Identified Workforce Skill Gaps

(From PRNewswire) — With their renewed optimism about the economy and intention to focus on strategic growth over the next 12 months, US private-company CEOs are making talent management a top priority. The majority (51%) of Trendsetter chief executives say that they need to fill certain skill gaps to meet their business objectives over the next one to two years, while 49% believe they have the right skills in place. Notably, more international marketers reported that they have skill gaps than their domestic-only peers (57% and 46%, respectively. Among private companies overall, the largest skill gaps identified were in middle management (53%) and skilled labor (48%). Those companies with skill gaps will focus on several areas over the next one to two years, including marketing and sales (65%), information technology (36%) and engineering/design (35%). Read more.

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Majority of Government Agencies Use Social Networks

Although most of your friends may not be jumping at the opportunity to share their online connections with the likes of the U.S. Census Bureau or the local chamber of commerce , local, state and federal agencies alike have joined the ranks of parents, grandparents and others new to the social networking scene. That’s right, the U.S. government is joining Facebook, Twitter, Myspace and any number of other social networking sites in droves and they want to be your friend. And here we thought grandpa joining Facebook was really the death of its coolness. A recent report by the talent management companies Human Capital Institute and Saba brings us the numbers, estimating that 66% of government workplaces now use social networking tools, with 65% using more than one tool. The report compares the government’s use of social networking tools with that of the private sector, noting that the government still trails with 29% not using any type of social networking compared to 15% of the private sector. But what does the breakdown look like? Read the full article.

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Laurance Alvarado Joins ASTD Board of Directors

The American Society for Training & Development announces that Laurance Alvarado, Senior Director with Alvarez & Marsal Public Sector Services, is joining the Society’s Board of Directors for a three-year term, 2011-2013. Mr. Alvarado has more than 24 years of operational and consulting leadership experience driving organizational excellence, sustainability, and thought leadership with governments and multinational corporations in more than 20 countries. His industry experience covers customs and border agencies, departments and ministries of defense, health care departments, public-private partnerships, privatization initiatives, special and economic development zones, petrochemical companies, global supply chain initiatives, and trade agreements. Before joining A&M, Mr. Alvarado was the co-founder and President of an ethically centered strategy, restructuring, and management consulting service. He served as a Senior Director for the strategy and business development unit of the international investment and development arm of Dubai Holding, and led the development and implementation of a governance framework for a $50 billion investment for building a new city. Mr. Alvarado served for two years as the Managing Director, Middle East, for BearingPoint, leading operations, business development, talent management, and consulting ventures. He was a Managing Director of KPMG Consulting and BearingPoint’s Border Security and Transportation Practice, and served as an active duty and reserve officer in the United States Air Force. Mr. Alvarado holds two bachelor’s degrees in business administration from Texas A&M University, a master’s degree in management from Troy State University, and has completed executive education at Columbia Business School.

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Latest Research Finds Onboarding Improves New-Employee Engagement and Productivity

(From Online PR News) — According to a recent Aberdeen Group study sponsored in part by SilkRoad technology, inc., the leading provider of Talent Management solutions, 63 percent of organizations with a formal Onboarding process experienced employee performance improvements within the first year. Aberdeen interviewed 466 human resources professionals for the study, “Onboarding: The First Line of Engagement,” and concluded companies with a formal onboarding process (with a dedicated strategy and objectives) had a 60 percent greater year-over-year improvement in revenue and a 63 percent greater year-over-year improvement in customer satisfaction than those with an informal or ad-hoc onboarding process. The 466 executives identified the most important goal of onboarding as ensuring employees are engaged and assimilated into the company’s culture and to make them productive as quickly as possible. Out of the companies Aberdeen found to have “Best-in-Class” performance, 85 percent have a formal onboarding process in place. Of those top companies, 67 percent also supported onboarding processes with formal learning and development, and 66 percent evaluated its onboarding impact at least annually. Read the full release. For more information on onboarding, consider attending the session From Knowledge Hoarding to Collaboration: New Employees Lead the Wayat the ASTD 2010 International Conference and Exposition!

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Korn/Ferry International Named HR Consulting Firm of the Year at China Staff Awards 2010

(From PRNewswire) — Korn/Ferry International, a premier global provider of talent management solutions, has won the HR Consulting Firm of the Year award in the category of Talent Management at the recent China Staff Awards 2010. Organized by CCH, a Wolters Kluwer business, the China Staff Awards, established in 1998, recognizes individuals and companies whose dedication to the HR profession is acknowledged by their peers. “We are thrilled to win the award for HR Consulting Firm of the Year under the Talent Management category,” said Jack Lim, managing director of Korn/Ferry’s Leadership and Talent Consulting business in Greater China. “The award is a testament and recognition of the work we do with our clients to help them continually build their capabilities and talent pipeline, in order to remain agile in a fast changing environment.” In recognizing Korn/Ferry, the panel of judges noted that “Korn/Ferry’s research-based talent management solutions have come at a critical time in the China market and worldwide. We recognize them for their quality services in the areas of identifying best fit talent, leadership assessment, and customized development programs. Korn/Ferry leverages unique methodologies to attract, identify and develop high-potential leaders who learn quickly, navigate change and drive the changes needed in the market.” The HR Consulting Firm of the Year award recognizes the firm that offers cohesive and effective HR management solutions in areas such as HR Strategy, cost & budget, organizational development, leadership development, succession planning, HR technology and workforce planning. These solutions must not have only helped clients create a high-performance work environment, but also proved to result in measurable benefits to the client company. Previous winners of this award include Hewitt Associates Consulting and Mercer Human Resources Consulting. Read more.

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Is your Training Effective after 90 days?

In an article posted by Achieve Global in 2008 entitled “Does Training Rely Too Much on Coaching by Managers? it isdiscussed that “training and coaching needs to be long-term companions in developing employees.” Sales Training Drivers is in agreement here and it is centered on the Sales Training Drivers core mission. 1. Integrate Sales Management with Talent Management 2. Create a Dynamic Sales Learning Culture 3. Increase Revenue and Maximize Sales Performance The question of whether sales training is effective after the employee receives it – is an emotional debate on its’ own. Coaching, Training and Managerial Effectiveness has had to change for the better in the Workplace over the past few years to respond to employee conflicts, and behavioral dysfunction between employees and managers. Unclear long term employee action planning is also a detriment to specific business results. Many trainers still do not understand how to tie specific business objectives to individual employee training to determine the impact of organizational revenue and performance productivity. Employee turn-over is the most costly of this mis-managed metric. And, if the Trainer does understand how to deliver at this level, is there enough time, a budget, resources and open communication with management to address such concerns? Sales Training Drivers will be discussing the evolution of this human performance improvement challenge in more detail in up coming blogs. Stay tuned for a lively conversation. We will take a look at the history of training and the different aspects of how it impacts HPI. (Human Performance Improvement).

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Increase Business Capacity to Increase Sales

Analyzing Organizational Capacity Analyzing Capacity within a business organization can be one of the most challenging of the sales training foundational competencies. The reason is because a positive cash flow from sales revenue generated by a high performance sales force ensures that the company can afford to risk making strategic market decisions. It needs to be able to service and deliver quality products that can be sold to grow the business. What is the function of Business Capacity? Business capacity involves analyzing, monitoring, measuring, evaluating, managing, and planning all functions of the company for financial, statistical, and behavioral data. This process allows business leaders to clearly identify how to grow and sustain the health of the organization. This includes: technological, operational and human performance. You can perform activities that align and maximize capacity measurements and improvements within any part of the organization. According to the ASTD World Class Selling, the definition of “Analyzing Organizational Capacity is to: “Assess and weigh competing requirements against available resources to minimize risk, ensure quality deliverables, and balance capabilities with capacity.” Key actions would include: 1. Assessing resources accurately 2. Balancing risk with goal achievement when determining next steps Should I integrate the capacity of my SALES or TRAINING department? Absolutely! It is extremely valuable for you to understand the financial, operational and human requirements and costs to run your training department. As a Sales or Talent Management Sales Trainer, you are responsible for the knowledge management of the sales team and its’ performance outcomes. The health of your own training department is vulnerable to business capacity shifts and changes. The better you understand how analyzing capacity works the better your departmental efforts will be measured for your own success as a Trainer! How does this relate to Sales Training? Your sales team’s performance in any given month will reflect the increases or decreases in the “capacity” to which the organization can utilize internal or external resources. In this case, we are talking about the companies’ ability to access financial resources that come from new and existing sales revenue. Sales revenue is the anchor of life for all business, The company will suffer in capacity when a sales organization is not strong. The business must be able to “afford” to adapt constant change and if it cannot do that without strong sales leadership, revenue increase and consistent sales productivity. If the organization be able to adapt to capacity changes or sustainability is threatened.

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Improve Sales

What are the needs of the sales team? Sales development needs must begin with an understanding of the intricacies of the buyer and seller relationship. Simply put, you must help sales team members leverage a standard sales process. This requires that youknow as much, if not more, about the sales process as the sales team members who employ it. While many sales team members have been trained on a standard process, or have figured it out on their own, you are in a unique position to prioritize, organize, and implement the appropriate sales training activity to improve its execution — as long as you know what you’re doing. The steps below are recurring cycle. Leveraging this analysis tool, you can improve efficiency and manage sales team development processes more effectively, within a strategic context. This tool offers a structured way for you to identify, prioritize, and implement sales training solutions. Because the approach is a system’s approach, it can help sales teams align to the buying organization, focus on ratcheting up performance, and address immediate problems while keeping an eye on the longer term. Sales managers and sales trainers will approach each sales training action with information about their organization, the buying organization, and the relationship between them. The model’s five phases are: As organizations begin to think of sales development needs within a phased, cyclical process, they are better equipped to adopt an overall holistic approach to sales force recruiting, retention, and engagement that includes talent management and leadership development – building a path towards improved sales team performance. Following this approach can help your organization understand the alignment of areas of sales force expertise in relation to long-term sales goals. By determining the key questions outlined under each step of the sales development analysis tool, you can begin to see how each phase builds upon the one before, and how specific skills and knowledge are developed. It will help you set the stage within your organization to effect the paradigm shift from “sales training” to “sales development and performance,” and will guide your efforts to make the business case for this shift as well as tie it to desired business outcomes. By adopting this approach, you can ensure that your sales organization is knowledgeable, engaged, and equipped to work with even the most demanding buyers to ensure your company’s future growth and profitability. Perhaps more importantly, this model serves as a continuous improvement framework. When you have accomplished step 5, it’s time to begin anew at step 1.

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Human Resources Organizations Lack Critical Skills for Success in 2011

(From PRNewswire) — Bersin & Associates, a world-class research and consulting firm that empowers HR organizations to drive bottom-line impact, today announced the launch of new research that shows many HR organizations lack the skills they need to succeed in 2011. The study, which included surveys and interviews with more than 720 global organizations, found that overall spending levels, organization structure, and team size have far less impact on business performance than the skills of the HR professionals themselves. The resulting report, The High-Impact HR Organization: Top 10 Best Practices on the Road to Excellence is a foundational piece of research in Bersin & Associates’ new HR Research Practice, which offers benchmarks, tools, case studies, operational frameworks, and proven service models that define best-practice human resources organizations. “This research clearly shows that the days of bloated HR organizations focused on administrative tasks are over,” said Josh Bersin, chief executive officer and president, Bersin & Associates. “Lean, technology-enabled, well-trained HR teams are able to take advantage of modern talent practices and partner with business leaders to drive impact.” The research also determined that the decades-old “HR generalist” model is no longer effective unless these individuals are highly trained and connected to senior business leaders. The key competencies that drive results today are familiarity with integrated talent management, understanding of workforce planning, and comfort with social networking and HR technology. These findings emerged from a two-year global benchmarking study that looked at 14 talent management and HR effectiveness measures across global businesses. The measures included a company’s ability to source the best talent, hire and onboard top candidates, identify and develop leaders, build a culture of learning, allocate compensation effectively, and drive high performance through coaching and feedback. Read more.

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HR Departments Prioritising Training Over Recruitment

(From freshbusinessthinking.com) — Taleo Corporation, provider of on-demand talent management solutions, today released new research findings which show that organisations are prioritising employee development over hiring for the year ahead, as they look to improve staff retention and develop talent within the business. The vast majority (82%) of HR professionals surveyed said they considered employee development to be a bigger priority for their organisation in 2011, compared to just 18% who felt recruitment was going to be more important. In addition, 56% of respondents reported that employee development and training was perceived as an essential business enabler within their organisation, while 15% reported that it was still seen as a nice to have rather than essential. When asked to identify what would help their organisation to develop its talent better, more than a quarter (27%) of respondents felt that better visibility of skill gaps would greatly assist them in developing employee talent, while almost as many (25%) would like better visibility of their employees existing skills. Read more.

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How Companies Can Spot and Groom Leaders

(From CBSNews.com) — One lament that commonly echoes through the corridors of senior management is not having the right people in the right places to do the job. Results of the PricewaterhouseCoopers’ annual Global CEO survey confirm that this concern is more than anecdotal. Of the chief executives who cited “talent constraint” issues: 24 percent “couldn’t achieve growth forecasts in overseas markets.” Worse, 50 percent of CEOs said “recruiting and retaining high potential middle managers” was their chief “talent” challenge. While this is worrying news for those at the top of their organizations, it should come as good news to those with jobs, as well as those looking to make a career move. The war for talent has moved from the back-burner to the front. As a result, those who recruit must up their game if they expect to hang on to their good people. The PwC survey highlights a 2010 finding by a consulting firm, the Corporate Executive Board, that “employees who were most committed to their organizations gave 57 percent more effort and were 87 percent less likely to resign than employees who consider themselves disengaged.” So if you are a senior leader, how do you hang onto your people? The easy answer is that you commit to it. More than half of the CEOs surveyed by PwC said their top HR person was a direct report. That’s a good first step, but it’s not enough. Former General Electric (GE) CEO Jack Welch famously told Fortune magazine that his second-most important priority as chief executive was “evaluating people, second only to “allocating capital.” Commitment is required to retaining good people, and while oceans of research has been conducted in the area of talent management, I would like to offer a few suggestions that I have seen work well. Read more.

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Dubai: Human resources conference attracts more than 30 world’s best speakers in strategy and expertise

(From Zawya.com) — The International Human Resources Conference and Exhibition (IHRC 2011), hosted by the Federal Authority for Government Human Resources (FAHR), will bring more than 30 world’s best known thought leaders and innovators in human resource development and organisational reforms to the UAE. The conference and exhibition, to be held in Dubai from Jan. 19 to 20, will set the stage for a global exchange of knowledge and ideas on integrating efficient HR management into the strategic plans and policies of governments and organisations across the world. Over 300 HR practitioners, heads of states, and experts are expected to attend IHRC 2011, held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai. Speakers at the conference will analyse regional and international trends and challenges in education, job creation and talent management, linking the debates to the central theme of the conference, “Human Resources: the Sustainable Capital for the New Era.” The conference has already attracted academics, strategists, trainers and consultants from world-leading centres of excellence in knowledge, innovations, leadership and management and from trend-setting public and private sector organisations worldwide. Read more.

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Dubai: Retention and Employee Engagement the Topmost HR Challenge

(From PRNewswire) — In a recent survey conducted by the International Quality and Productivity Centre, 44% of the 2,895 Energy sector respondents have chosen retention and employee engagement as the topmost HR challenge in the Oil & Gas sector compared to 19% for recruitment. Continuous intake programs and intensive training have helped the industry address the recruitment challenge well. Now it is the next step of engaging and retaining the staff that has come under the spotlight. Building competencies and leadership development were the other top-quoted challenges. A surprising result was when people were asked to define the most prominent role that HR had to play in Oil and Gas. Planning for rewards and compensation came in last with only 9% voting for it. Talent Management and learning and development with 17% each were on top of the table. The most interesting areas of interest were Nationalization and leadership development initiatives. As the custodians of the region’s natural and mineral wealth, it is important that the national population is involved in key leadership positions which in turn are safeguarded through a structured succession plan. Mark Bechtold, HR & Organization Development Consultant at Saudi Aramco, commented, “Factors impacting organizations include rising costs, competitive business environments, and changing workforce demographics. To address these issues, management in Middle East Oil & Gas companies must build on the strengths of the Middle Eastern, Arab culture in a way that involves, engages and inspires employees to work harder and smarter.” Read more.

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Do you have a tried-and-true activity?

Have you ever thought about becoming a published author? Do you have a tried-and-true activity? One that works every time? One that is “road tested?” If yes, we’d like to invite you to be a part of a new project. ASTD and Pfeiffer/Wiley Publishing are partnering to create an exciting opportunity for ASTD members to be published: a new activity book entitled Road-Tested Activities for Trainers. The book will feature activities that are certain to be a success. We’d like to invite you to share your activity with your colleagues. What to Contribute? We’re looking for all the typical topics trainers use such as teambuilding, leadership, collaboration, organization development, building trust, conflict management, listening, feedback, talent management, employee engagement, technology, diversity, creativity, problem solving, ice breakers, and others that you think of. Don’t be concerned about the topic. We are more interested in the fact that the activity works. What’s in it for you if your activity is published? You will receive: 1. A complimentary copy of the book. 2. Professional exposure; your contact information and a short biography will be printed in the book and associated with your activity. 3. And best of all, you will be considered an ASTD and a Wiley author and receive a 25 percent discount for all Wiley titles. How do you get started? Email Elaine Biech, the editor, confirming your interest or to ask questions at ebboffice@aol.com by May 31. She will send you a template to get started. She will also help you with your editing to ensure that your submission is the best it can be!

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Don Kirkpatrick Live

As part of the ASTD Handbook of Measuring and Evaluating Training, we have asked Rebecca Ray, senior vice president of global talent management and development at MasterCard, to interview some of the founding voices of the measuring and evaluating field. The first of these interviews, which also celebrates the 50th anniversary of his seminal articles on the four levels of evaluation in T+D, is with Donald Kirkpatrick. Read more and listen to the interview.

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Developing High Performing Sales Teams: focus on the winners or weed out the failures?

We caught up with Howard Stevens after his keynote presentation that kicked-off our online-only conference last week. In his speech Howard offered some insight that many of us might find to be counter-intuitive. He said: We asked if Howard could elaborate and he followed-up with four main points to remember when you are evaluating your sales teams and considering your training and development options: So, as you go through the process of evaluating, developing and maintaining your sales force, remember to focus on weeding out the lowest performing salespeople rather than constantly rewarding your superstars. Build an average team and you will do better overtime than if you constantly struggled to maintain a team of superstars. If you’re looking for more insights on the critical steps to developing high performing sales teams, be sure to register for our online, on-demand conference available now through Wednesday, July 28. Howard Stevens, founder, chairman and CEO of HR Chally Group, a talent management, leadership development, and sales improvement corporation providing personnel assessment and research services to more than 2, 500 customers in 35 countries for over 33 years.

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Despite Warnings, U.S. Companies Remain Unprepared for Baby Boomers’ Exodus

CHESTNUT HILL, Mass. (PRNewswire) — With millions of Baby Boomers poised to age out of the workforce, U.S. companies remain unprepared for an imminent talent drain that threatens to alter the national economy, according to a new report by the Sloan Center on Aging & Work at Boston College. Nearly 70 percent of the almost 700 organizations surveyed do not yet know how old their workers are or how many are likely to retire. Forty percent reported that the aging of the workforce will have a detrimental impact on their businesses by 2012. “The out-migration of a generation of workers will upset the entire balance of the workplace,” said co-author Marcie Pitt-Catsouphes, director of the Sloan Center on Aging & Work. “U.S. companies need to start planning strategically for workforce sustainability. The current abundance of older worker talent and experience is going to dry up, and businesses will very soon need to fill hundreds, if not thousands, of jobs.” The report — The Pressures of Talent Management — examined talent management practices at 696 organizations across the 10 leading sectors of the economy. The companies studied employ more than one million workers combined and represent businesses that account for roughly 85 percent of the jobs and payrolls in the U.S. Read the full release.

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Decision Makers LOVE Me!

People prefer to do business with people they like!How do you do that? One of the most rewarding aspects of great sales training is teaching others how building great relationships with prospects, customers and their client referrals. This article is about building relationships. Building relationships is foundational to performance improvement and transcends all areas of your life at work, play and at home. A good Trainer will teach that the most important person in a conversation is the other person! Steering and focusing the conversation on what is happening in the other persons life will be 90% of the conversation in the sales process. The other 10% will be the sales person questioning and gathering feedback. (Yet, statistics will show you that 80% of sales professionals still do not do this even after training because the skill is not practiced enough!) These statistics show that Sales Trainers and Talent Management still have a lot of collaborating to do! Sales Training Drivers.com is committed to helping the Workplace Learning Industry foster more of this collaboration and help sales professionals stay on target to meet their professional and personal goals. The business goal of building relationships is to teach how to move the sales forward for mutual benefit. Show your sales team that building rapport is broken down by value percentages representing the highest amount a prospect will likely receive and absorb your message during conversation. Rapport is comprised of your ability to use: 1. Words (7%) – 93% of people only listen to 7% of what you say and only remember 3%. 2. Tonality (38%) – the tone of your voice matched with someone else’s level of tone 3. Physiology (55%) body language, facial expression, posture, stance, composure, movements, gestures Learning how to use words and body language is crucial to successful selling (and training!). It must be done over practice sessions, one on one coaching, role plays, and measured evaluations. Practicing the use of specific words, tonality and physiology during the sales process is an art in itself. Less than 10% of sales professionals ever fully master it! Your ability to present yourself appropriately and ask questions will prompt people to give you the personal answers you need to solve their issues and sell them. Teach active listening skills and questioning techniques that check for agreement. It will show your sales team how to look at the prospects problem from their point of view. Have your sales team learn how to present your product or service as a valuable addition to the security, comfort, and enjoyment of your prospects life. Teach them how to become interested in their prospects lives. (family, job, and recreation activities, and financial concerns). This takes a lot of practice in building transferable behavioral skills in relationship building. We all want to feel special and we all want to feel OK. Many customers will go miles out of their way to do business with someone they like and will make them feel happy and appreciated. Once someone likes you, they will bring you into their inner circle of influence and their friends will become your friends. Your business will grow much faster while other sales people who do not build quality relationships are vulnerable to the ups and downs of the economy, trends and budgets.

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DDI Launches Definitive Survey of Global Leadership

(From DDIWorld.com) DDI, Stoke Poges, 21st July 2010: Global Talent Management Consultancy, Development Dimensions International Ltd (DDI), has launched its Leadership Forecast 2010/2011, the definitive study of leadership trends across the world. The Leadership Forecast has been launched in collaboration with the Chartered Institute of Personnel Development (CIPD) and aims to evaluate how the economic downturn has impacted confidence in leadership and how leaders are dealing with leadership transitions. It will also examine the best-in-class strategies for selecting, promoting and developing tomorrow’s leaders and compare information from other countries. In addition, it aims to examine the relationship between leadership practices and company performance. This will be the sixth Leadership Forecast, spanning twelve years and since the last report, the world economy has seen turbulent times. Steve Newhall, managing director of DDI UK comments: “In our last survey, we saw how far leadership development efforts had closed the gap between expectation and reality. And we saw what, in the mind of leaders themselves was working and what wasn’t. That study was conducted right before the economic crisis hit and it will be fascinating to see how it has affected leadership in the UK and around the world. Leaders have been through challenging times, many are operating in a completely new reality and will have had to adjust to totally different organisational priorities. To see how the global recession has affected learning and development strategies for our leadership teams will be immensely valuable.” HR professionals and senior managers are invited to complete the survey at www.ddiworld.com/leadershipforecast. Organisations that can encourage 30 non-HR leaders to participate will receive a free customised company report comparing their organisation’s data to local and global norms.

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DDI: Best-Practices in Building the Leadership Pipeline

Organizational focus on succession management will continue to grow as a result by the limited and narrowing skilled labor market, according to recent research by Aberdeen Group, a Harte-Hanks Company (NYSE: HHS), underwritten by Development Dimensions International (DDI). How Best-in-Class organizations address the pressures of a tightened labor market, as well as the results they’ve achieved by doing so, are highlighted in the new benchmark report by Aberdeen Group, Succession Management: Addressing the Leadership Development Challenge. Aberdeen revealed that the foundation of an effective succession management program lies in a solid competency framework as well as a standardized performance management process. In fact, organizations that achieved Aberdeen’s Best-in-Class designation for this study are 45% more likely than all other organizations to have clearly defined success profiles (knowledge, experience, competencies and personal attitudes) for key positions. “When it comes to identifying high-potential talent, it is critical to evaluate their performance equally,” said Jayson Saba, senior research associate, human capital management at Aberdeen. “Viewing succession candidates through the same looking glass allows organizations to compare apples to apples and make better decisions for selecting leadership candidates.” Moreover, this research highlights the importance of establishing accountability at the management ranks for ensuring a qualified leadership pipeline. To this point, Best-in-Class organizations are 62% more likely than Laggard organizations to have a systematic process where senior managers regularly review the performance and progress of high-potentials enrolled in development programs. According to Kevin Martin, Aberdeen’s vice president and principal analyst for human capital management, “this research compliments and reinforces research we’ve conducted across other elements of talent management, specifically performance management and learning and development, where we see Best-in-Class organizations view employee development more as a collective effort rather than an individual’s sole responsibility”. The research also found that integrating succession data with other talent management elements has yielded great benefits in terms of workforce knowledge management. Best-in-Class organizations are more than twice as likely as Laggards to integrate succession data with performance management and learning and development applications. Saba added, “Integrating talent management data provides organizations more visibility into the development of high-potentials and improves their decision-making ability when it comes to determining promotion readiness.” Read more.

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DDI Announces Development Program for Individual Contributors

As organizations look to the future of business, the performance of every employee will be critical for business growth. So global talent management expert Development Dimensions International (DDI) has created a development solution to help individual contributors boost the skills that will improve both individual and group effectiveness DDI’s program, Interaction Management: Exceptional Performers (IM: ExPSM), includes eight courses to build the skills of professionals and emerging leaders, from financial whizzes to engineering gurus. “Organizations can’t afford to ignore this group of professionals that aspire to be the technical experts as well as the next generation of leaders,” said Jim Davis, Vice President of Workforce and Service Development for DDI. IM: ExP uses interactive learning experiences to build skills that result in positive behavior changes in employees, resulting in a more productive and more engaged workforce. The course list includes: Communicating with Impact, Embracing Change, High-Impact Feedback and Listening, Networking for Enhanced Collaboration, Navigating beyond Conflict, Valuing Differences, and Working as a High-Performing Team. Read more.

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DDI Announces Online Assessment System Manager Ready

Development Dimensions International (DDI) announces the launch of Manager ReadySM, an online frontline leader assessment that combines the efficiency of a technology-driven process with insights of live assessors-leading to a realistic participant experience and in-depth insight into leadership capability and performance. This real world simulation provides organizations with critical information used to make decisions about who is ready for frontline leader roles and how people can develop in those roles to be more effective. Through the use of a computer-based simulation that utilizes streaming audio and video, candidates experience a ‘day-in-the-life’ of a frontline leader and are given the opportunity to respond to problems and inquiries presented through open-ended emails, video voicemails, planning activities and problem-solving exercises. These various data points contribute to a high-quality diagnosis of an individual’s leadership capabilities, giving companies more than 900 participant performance data points that roll up to 9 critical core leadership competencies that determine how a global leader will perform on the job. “Frontline leaders are more critical today than ever. They make the day-to-day decisions that make or break the business,” Scott Erker, Senior Vice President of Selection Solutions at DDI said. “We hear more and more that they’re not ready for the job the organizations needs them to do. Our goal, with this innovation, is to identify the gaps between what skills leaders have-and what skills they need to be successful.” Manager Ready incorporates the high-touch method of extracting real behaviors through simulations and trained assessors scoring those behaviors. In the past, this type of information would require a significant investment-Manager Ready provides high-value diagnosis at a fraction of the cost. Unlike multiple choice tests where participants choose actions from a static list, Manager Ready participants respond in open-ended formats, allowing candidates to reply exactly as they would on the job. The advantage is that it is more realistic to participants and the responses are more reflective of how they handle challenges in the real world. “This data has some teeth, which in an organization like ours is hugely important,” said Tim Toterhi, senior director of global organizational design for Quintiles. “Part of the reason we like Manager Ready is that it gives us robust, fact-based data to help enhance the decision-making process for selecting people-either for promotions or for hiring them into the organization.” Manager Ready participants are scored on how they resolve conflicts with customers and coworkers or how they coach a direct report through a difficult situation. In turn, organizations receive insight into how the candidates perform in these tasks, and measure a participant’s readiness for leadership across nine critical managerial competencies: Coaching for Success, Coaching for Improvement, Managing Relationships, Guiding Interactions, Problem Analysis, Judgment, Delegation & Empowerment, Gaining Commitment, and Planning & Organizing. These competencies were chosen based on more than 700 frontline leader job analysis studies conducted by DDI across the world as well as the millions of leaders trained and assessed by DDI over the last 40 years. “Manager Ready gives organizations deeper insight into the strengths and development needs of their current and future frontline leaders, ensuring better hiring and promotion decisions and improved diagnosis for accelerating development,” Erker said. “The bottom line is that organizations need to find leaders who are ready to take-on the challenges of the new economy.” About DDI Founded in 1970, Development Dimensions International, a global talent management expert, works with organizations worldwide to apply best practices to hiring/promotion, leadership development, performance management and succession management. With 1,000 associates in 42 offices in 26 countries, the firm advises half of the Fortune 500. For more information about DDI visit http://www.ddiworld.com/aboutddi

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Creative Leadership Development Strategies in Tough Times

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–“Talent management and succession planning are more critical during tough times to avoid talent shortages when the economy improves” says Darleen DeRosa, Managing Partner of OnPoint Consulting. Rather than slashing budgets, Dr. DeRosa suggests five strategies: Companies that invest in talent will be better prepared to take advantage of the upturn when tough times are a thing of the past.

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Cornerstone OnDemand White Paper Examines Why Employee Empowerment is Crucial to Business Success

(From Business Wire) — Workforce empowerment should be a priority for businesses if they want to retain top talent and stay competitive as the market recovers, according to a new white paper from talent management software provider Cornerstone OnDemand. “The Empowered Workforce: Crucial to Success in the New Economy” explores the notion of empowerment – what it means for employees, why it matters for the bottom line, and how organizations can leverage learning and HR strategies to foster employee empowerment. “Closing the empowerment gap is about providing employees with the tools they need to learn and grow, encouraging them to make their own decisions and enabling them to contribute to the success of the business,” said Charles Coy, Director of Product Marketing for Cornerstone OnDemand. “Empowerment also is a key driver of engagement, which can result in higher customer satisfaction, increased productivity, improved retention and a boosted bottom line.” Research from the Gallup Organization shows that companies that had higher-than-average employee engagement also had 27 percent higher profits, 50 percent higher sales and 50 percent higher customer loyalty.1 “Ultimately, every company wants employees who are engaged in their work and empowered to succeed in their roles,” said Nina Ramsey, Senior Vice President of Global Human Resources for Kelly Services, a leading provider of global workforce management services. “Our customers want to work with front-line people who are fully capable of meeting their needs and are committed to delivering excellent service. It’s Kelly’s job to prepare our employees and ensure they are equipped to make key decisions that will help create loyal customers and, in turn, impact the success and profitability of our company.” Read more.

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Connecting Government to Improve It

The article below is from the April 2010 issue of T+D magazine. It has some intriguing info about the advances social media is making in the public sector and some of its implications for learning and development. I hope you enjoy it. Shawn Connecting Government to Improve It By Dean Smith As the U.S. government steadily loosens restrictions on social media, some agencies are already benefitting from the next era of community and collaboration. While social networking tools are increasingly enabling corporations to market and sell more effectively by getting closer to their global customer base, government agencies have embraced these technologies to share knowledge, drive informal learning, and establish communities of practice. Terms such as “eGov,” “Gov2.0,” and “opengov” have entered the lexicon. While significant obstacles remain, it’s catching on. “There is power in connecting people in government,” says Steve Ressler, founder of GovLoop, a social networking site for government with more than 25,000 members, 4,000 blogs, and 1,500 discussions. “It’s definitely a learning community.” A recent survey conducted by the Human Capital Institute and Saba titled “Social Networking in Government: Opportunities & Challenges” reports that 66 percent of all government agencies currently use some form of social networking- from blogs and wikis to instant messaging and discussion boards to LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. At the same time, 55 percent of all government workers say that they’re uncertain about the future use of social networking tools, but still see them as an effective means of real-time collaboration and have hopes for future application of the technologies in the workplace. “The public sector managers I have worked with seem to have an intrigue-fear relationship with social networking tools and practices,” says Lisa Haneberg, author of High-Impact Middle Management: Solutions for Today’s Busy Public Sector Managers. “They are intrigued with the potential in these tools for relationship building, project management, and collaboration. They fear the learning curve involved in becoming efficient at using social networking and worry that it might end up being a waste of time.” The case studies are piling up. The CIA uses Facebook to attract college students to apply for internships or jobs. As a way to share knowledge, build collaboration, and improve employee engagement in contrast, the Environmental Protection Agency created a Facebook network for employees to achieve better talent management. County and municipal governments are leading the way in leveraging digital options for the dual aims of improving customer service and reducing costs: 31 percent of those surveyed have embraced social media as a means of providing a more efficient customer feedback channel. “The EPA and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are pretty far advanced,” says Ressler. “They need to be active to prevent misinformation.” The survey reports that social networking tools within governmental agencies are used most effectively for knowledge sharing and informal learning, as well as development functions. The top three most likely uses of social networking tools in government involve learning and development, public relations and communications, and recruitment. Despite the uptake of social media in government agencies, the government still lags behind the private sector in the overall use of these tools. The top three internal forces barring their widespread use are security concerns, other priorities, and difficulty in building a business case. “Public sector leaders are learning about how for-profit organizations are using social networking and are interested in how these new technologies might help their teams succeed. Their process involves two types of learning,” said Haneberg. “They need to get comfortable with the tools and then translate how social networking will work in their often highly regimented and regulated environment.” Dean Smith is director of publications at ASTD

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Competitive Analysis: What Sales Teams Want

The American Society for Training and Development (ASTD) recently published a whitepaper on “Selling with Competence: How Sales Teams Succeed.” In that whitepaper, the authors discuss recent trends and research in the sales training profession. In order to determine what salespeople need to learn, we must first determine what they need to know. No longer are product knowledge, persuasiveness, and persistence enough. To truly understand what successful sales team members need to know and do, ASTD asked them. ASTD Research surveyed 210 sales trainers and 179 salespeople during the summer of 2007. Overwhelmingly, respondents said that they value sales training and believe it to be very or extremely important. When asked about the skills required to be successful in their jobs, survey respondents indicated these top five: Respondents were also asked what kind of knowledge is required to be successful in their jobs. Valuable knowledge areas include: Accenture research found that although 146 of 244 executives from six countries said that the sales team plays the most prominent role in their company’s long- and short-term success, 41 percent of managers and executives from more than 2,500 sales organizations said that their salespeople are performing below expectations (Nightingale Conant/Andy Miller). ASTD advocates a new approach, one in which the sales development and training needs of sales teams are viewed through a strategic and holistic lens. To be successful, this approach requires the alignment of all aspects of talent management, skills development, and sales process execution. Revenue goals must be aligned with business outcomes and business processes that are deliberately designed to allow salespeople to develop productive customer relationships and deliver appropriate solutions. Further, salespeople must be equipped and empowered to make decisions that benefit both the buying and selling organizations, and sales managers must be given both the time and the training to coach and develop their sales teams.

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Closing the Gap in Leadership Development

(From UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School) — This whitepaper examines the knowledge, skills and abilities business leaders must have to ensure the continued success of their organizations in today’s competitive global marketplace. It will introduce HR and talent management professionals to a four-step process taught at UNC’s Kenan-Flagler Business School to improve leadership skills and to create a leadership culture within organizations. Read the whitepaper.

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CEOs Hiring, But Finding Skill Gaps

(From Business Journal Daily) — The CEOs of the nation’s private companies are expressing renewed optimism about the economy and their intention to focus on strategic growth over the next 12 months, finds a new study. They’re also making talent management a top priority but have identified skill gaps as they make hiring plans. The majority (51%) of CEOs responding to PwC’s Private Company Trendsetter Barometer say that they need to fill certain skill gaps to meet their business objectives over the next one to two years, while 49% believe they have the right skills in place. Notably, more international marketers reported that they have skill gaps than their domestic-only peers (57% and 46%, respectively). Among private companies overall, the largest skill gaps identified were in middle management (53%) and skilled labor (48%). Those companies with skill gaps will focus on several areas over the next one to two years, including marketing and sales (65%), information technology (36%) and engineering/design (35%). “Over the past two years, CEOs were focused on cost containment, making deep work force cuts in anticipation of a protracted recession,” said Ken Esch, a partner in PwC’s private company services practice. “Emerging from the recession, companies are now shifting their focus, with growth being top of mind these days and executives repositioning their companies for the long term. For many firms, this means making strategic hires in areas that will drive growth, as well as looking carefully at current people and pivotal roles that create value.” Read more.

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Can Mid-Level Managers Escape the Gloom of the Recession and Drive a Recovery Strategy?

(From PRWEB) — The Human Capital Institute (HCI) in association with Development Dimensions International (DDI), global talent management expert, announced last week at the Human Capital Summit in Tucson, Arizona, the recent results of a new research report, Mid-Level Managers: The Bane and Salvation of Organizations. The report focused on the strategic importance of mid-level management as companies recover from the worst recession in decades. In recent history, mid-level managers have been recognized as vital ambassadors between senior leadership and the front lines of a business. Because mid-level managers have such crucial roles in their organizations’ success or failure, because they are largely responsible for strategy execution HCI and DDI set out to gather “point in time” information by surveying human resource leaders to understand the current set of issues creating strain within organizations. “This is a unique survey that opens a window into a critical component of the management structure at a time when they have faced tremendous pressure during the recession,” says Michael DeMarco, HCI’s Director of Research, “Ultimately, the survey results will help organizations answer many questions about mid-level managers as the recovery takes shape.” Read more. For more information on developingmiddle managers, consider attending the sessionBuilding Middle-Management Excellence: A Model for Trainersat the ASTD 2010 International Conference and Exposition!

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Canada: FuelCell Energy Charges up High-Potentials

Ottawa, Canada ( PRWEB) April 24, 2009 — FuelCell Energy Inc., the global leader in clean stationary electric power, implemented Halogen Software’s talent management suite globally in just six weeks, and within one appraisal cycle created a high-performance culture. The organization improved the integrity and value of its employee performance data, aligned its rapidly growing workforce around a common set of goals, and ensured its high-potential employees were recognized and nurtured. The demands of the current economic climate are putting pressure on organizations globally to quickly gain a better understanding of their workforce and align, communicate with and motivate their top performers. FuelCell recognized that, especially during this difficult economic downturn, maximizing the performance of its human capital was essential. Understanding where to allocate scarce resources and how to strategically develop talent to meet business needs is an urgent necessity for companies of all sizes. FuelCell Energy is a clear example of how quickly organizations can achieve these goals and strengthen their competitive position in the process. By automating its talent management processes FuelCell helped strengthen and streamline its rapid global expansion- growing from 150 to over 500 employees in four years. Before implementing Halogen’s solution, the organization faced a number of challenges in their performance management system, including a lack of consistency, accountability, and employee engagement with the existing process. As a result, performance reviews were not considered a valuable tool for the organization as a whole. “The HR team found the system and process painful for everyone involved and looked to overhaul it and implement an automated system,” said Sandra Mauro, HR Manager with FuelCell Energy. “Once we had decided to invest in Halogen, things began to improve quickly. We were live within six weeks of training. It was awesome. I have done a lot of software implementations in my career and I know how painful they can be. Getting Halogen up and running was painless.” Halogen Software is able to consistently implement its suite for customers under very tight deadlines, even for those with global operations, because the solution is so flexible and easily configured. This enables customers to have the Halogen applications adapt to their processes and forms-rather than the other way around. Once Halogen’s suite had been successfully implemented, FuelCell was able to address its business problems almost immediately. Availability of information and a methodology toward a high performance culture began to evolve and improve with each review process. Accountability for goals and alignment around performance is now the norm for its global workforce. The company fosters greater recognition of high performance, and nurtures employee growth via development planning and ongoing feedback. The intelligence gained through the performance appraisal process is now readily accessible and is therefore actionable, unlike with the paper-based process, which was impractical to aggregate and report on. The shift is an exciting one for the HR team. “I recommend Halogen to pretty much anyone who will listen. I talk about it all the time,” says Mauro. “We use the employee performance management system to drive a higher level of accountability. As a high-growth company, we have many employees who join our team from different companies and corporate cultures. The new system enables us to standardize performance expectations and unify our corporate culture.” (Read the entire article at Canadian Business Online.) Learn more about Halogen Software here: http://www.halogensoftware.com/

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Bombardier: Giving women wings

(From The Globe and Mail) — Bombardier Aerospace is one of the world’s largest producers of civil aircraft, with nearly 17,000 full-time employees in Canada. But its areas of engineering and manufacturing traditionally haven’t attracted many women. The company is out to change that. “We’ve broadened our strategy to increase diversity, with having more women throughout the organization as a top priority,” says Elisabeth Buss, director of leadership development and talent management at the Dorval, Que.-based organization, a division of Montreal’s Bombardier Inc. “Increasing diversity is a business strategy: We want our employees to be representative of the community in which we do business.” Women have made up two-thirds of the recent growth in the Canadian workforce, climbing from 35 per cent in the 1970s to 50 per cent in 2005, according to the book Organizational Behavior: Managing People and Organizations. Following its inaugural two-day Women in Leadership Forum in Montreal in 2010, Bombardier Aerospace set a goal to increase the percentage of women in management positions from the current 16 per cent to 25 per cent by next year. Read more.

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ASTD’s Riding the Tiger makes MSNBC article!

Eve Tahmincioglu writes about Riding the Tiger in her article, Surviving Your Company’s Mistakes. The section “Truth and lies” reads as follows: “?Alas, sometimes it’s hard to distinguish between truth and lies. In 2005, Ed Cohen left his job at Booz Allen Hamilton. His wife, Priscilla, left her consulting practice to take jobs in India with Satyam Computer Services, a top global IT outsourcing company. Satyam’s Chairman and founder, Ramalinga Raju, “was the most generous person we had ever encountered,” said Cohen. “He would speak of ethics and integrity at every leadership training meeting.” It turned out, Raju was actually cooking the company’s books. He was arrested in 2009. “At the time the allegations came up, I thought it was a joke,” Cohen said. Cohen, who was the chief learning officer responsible for talent management of Satyam’s 53,000 global workers at the time, said many of the employees, including himself, seemed to go through the stages of grief that people coping with death often face – betrayal, anger, depression, and eventually, acceptance. The experience prompted Cohen and his wife to write a book about their experience titled, ” Riding the Tiger: Leading Through Learning in Turbulent Times.” “It was like we were in a war,” he said. “When you’re in war, your adrenaline is pumping, you’ve got to keep things going, but when it’s over the post-traumatic stress kicks in.” Whole article here.

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ASTD Offers New Training Resources for Public Sector Professionals

Government agencies, like private sector organizations, continually look for ways to increase efficiencies and improve agency performance. Having a knowledgeable, skilled workforce is a critical step in meeting those goals. To help managers and learning professionals build their talent, the American Society for Training & Development (ASTD) has several new offerings tailored specifically to the needs of professionals in the public sector. One certificate program, “Managing Talent for Mission Success,” is designed for managers and supervisors, training and development practitioners, and HR specialists in the federal government. This practical two-day workshop will enable participants to better leverage their role in the organization to more effectively inform, influence, and lead talent management in support of mission achievement. Participants will explore a six step process: Other ASTD certificate programs explore topics relevant in the public sector like training design and delivery, coaching, human performance improvement, managing organizational knowledge, and measuring and evaluating learning. ASTD offers other beneficial resources to public sector employees. Through its content licensing program ASTD enables agencies to deliver learning libraries to agencies’ protected websites, providing employees with access to cutting edge training materials. The Public Manager, a quarterly journal dedicated to encouraging professionalism and high performance in all levels of government, gives public managers and executives the opportunity to write and share ideas about critical public management issues. ASTD Press offers books that can help managers and training professionals in the public sector such as High-Impact Middle Management: Solutions for Today’s Busy Public Sector Managers, written by Lisa Haneberg. More information about ASTD’s resources for the public sector is available at http://www.astd.org/ASTD/Government/.

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ASTD Loves Our Volunteers!

It’s National Volunteer Week which made me think it’s a good time to offer a heartfelt “THANK YOU!!” to all of the volunteers who give their time and energy to ASTD. From our Board of Directors, to those who serve on advisory committees, to the people who help us at our conferences, and with special initiatives like reviewing award applications, ASTD is fortunate to benefit from the passion, commitment, and talent of so many people. Here’s a list of all of ASTD national’s volunteer committees: ASTD Board of Directors ASTD Certification Institute Board of Directors ASTD Forum Advisory Group Awards Strategy Committee BEST Awards Advisory Committee Chapter-focused committees: Chapter Leaders Conference Program Advisory Committee Chapter Recognition Committee Editorial Board International Conference Program Advisory Committee National Advisors for Chapters Public Policy Council Sales Training Advisory Committee Selection Committee Talent Management Advisory Committee TechKnowledge Program Advisory Committee In addition there are thousands of volunteers who give of their time at the local level by serving their ASTD chapter. Thanks to all of you who give so generously and help ASTD fulfill its vision to “create a world that works better.” Happy Volunteer Week!

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ASTD 2011 International Conference & Exposition Attracts Thousands of Attendees from Around the World

More than 8,500 people attended the recent ASTD 2011 International Conference & Exposition, held in Orlando, FL, May 22-25. The conference drew more than 2,100 attendees from outside the United States representing 81 countries, the largest number of international participants in recent years. ASTD 2011 featured keynote speakers focused on leadership. Best-selling author Marcus Buckingham debuted a new book and strengths assessment tool called Stand Out. Campbell Soup Company CEO Doug Conant and leadership development expert Mette Norgaard, and former Blue Angels lead solo pilot John Foley brought their own perspectives to the topic. The need for leadership development, succession planning, and talent management are important issues for the workplace learning profession. Mobile learning was the focus of the presentation by ASTD President and CEO Tony Bingham. Bingham told attendees, “Mobile learning is the latest emerging trend in our use of technology for learning. Gartner reports that worldwide sales of tablets will jump from 19.5 million units in 2010 to 208 million units in 2014. Research from the Institute for Corporate Productivity (i4cp) indicates that organizations’ use of mobile learning had one of the highest correlations with market performance and the highest correlation with effective instructional design. Those are very compelling reasons to incorporate mobile as part of a learning strategy.” Supporting the value of mobile technology for learning and professional development, ASTD introduced an app for attendees that allowed them to build their conference schedule, access educational materials, post and read Twitter updates, map the conference floor, take notes, and much more. The app was featured in an article in the New York Times. Don Kirkpatrick, the creator of the Kirkpatrick Model of training evaluation, was specially recognized for his contributions to the profession. Kirkpatrick, who is retiring, delivered his last educational session to a standing-room-only crowd. Highlights from the conference include Annually, the ASTD International Conference & Exposition is the world’s largest gathering of training and development professionals. The ASTD 2012 conference will be held in Denver, Colorado May 6-9.

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Are They Really Ready?

DDI is having a webinar on June, 17 2009 All webinar registrants will receive a complimentary copy of DDI’s Sales Talent Management Benchmark Study. Webinar: Preparing Today’s Sales Force for Tomorrow’s Sales Strategy Readiness is the key to sales success. Whether it is a new competitive threat, launching a new solution or changes in a client’s situation, your sales organization must be ready to adapt to changes in your business environment. Yet according to DDI’s recent Sales Talent Management Benchmark Study, half of sales leaders believe that less than 40 percent of their sales people and sales leaders have the skills to execute tomorrow’s sales strategy. Register for this free event here: http://www.ddiworld.com/events/indevent.asp?id=1419 All too often, a sales person’s contribution to the bottom line is the primary or only indicator of how prepared he or she is to handle a change in strategy or new responsibilities. Conventional wisdom is that the top salesperson should be the best equipped to step into a front-line manager role. Unfortunately, our study shows that 64 percent of sales leaders are dissatisfied with how their organizations prepare high-potential sales reps for these leadership positions. During this webinar we’ll discuss:

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Anne Schwartz of UPS Joins ASTD Board of Directors

The American Society for Training & Development announces that Anne M. Schwartz, SPHR, Vice President of Global Leadership Development for UPS, is joining the Society’s Board of Directors for a three-year term, 2011-2013. In her role, Ms. Schwartz is responsible for global training and leadership development, training strategy and governance, the analysis and development of learning technologies, and talent management for the enterprise. During her 24-year UPS career, Ms. Schwartz has held a variety of positions in Small Package Operations and Human Resources, as well as in non-package sectors of the business, both domestically and abroad, including UPS Supply Chain Solutions, mergers and acquisitions, and corporate strategy. Ms. Schwartz holds the SPHR certification from the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) and is a member of the Atlanta Human Resources Leadership Forum, ASTD.

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Alert! Your Competition Just Got Your Market Research Data!!

SPANNING BOUNDARIES Warning! Your companies market research data has just been hacked! How did this happen? Some sales guy just “spanned his boundaries!” thus the State of a Free Capitalistic System and that is a GOOD thing!Spanning Boundaries is a Sales Training Drivers World Class Sales Competency. It falls under the category of “business insight” and involves the active collaboration of cross functional teams or work groups. The purpose is to collecting critical information on organizational challenges. Sales training and the need for knowledge management will be invaluable to this process as it relates to team building, prospect data collection, cultural behavior analysis and market trends. Knowledge Management is focused on leveraging different knowledge bases that can provide Sales Trainers up to date resources faster and more efficiently than one leader, group or organization can do by itself. In other words, two or more resources working together towards a common goal is better than one. Wikipedia describes it this way – ” Knowledge management (KM) comprises a range of strategies and practices used in an organization to identify, create, represent, distribute, and enable adoption of insights and experiences.”The incoming information is shared, stored and analyzed by knowledge management so that sales leaders and upper level management can address the business climate and organizational development concerns quickly. Boundary spanning teams and workgroups will continue to collect and bring in the information for problem solving and finding new ways to capitalize on learning and development opportunities. The organizational challenges being examined externally by a cross functional sales and marketing teams could include: business intelligence, global competition, changing marketing demographics, cultural development or technological advances by a competitor. Internal boundary spanning by the team could look at challenges and root weaknesses in executive leadership behavior, succession planning, and an in depth look at interpersonal communication breakdown between senior leaders, departmental directors, and managers. Sales Directors and Sales Trainers will look to give Senior Leaders information on how to solve sales revenue and sustainability problems collectively. This will require the deliberate initiation of highly trained boundary spanning teams.What may be most difficult for Senior Leaders, Talent Management and Marketing / Sales Analysts, is that the re-organizing the traditional vertical organizational charts showing how employees directly report to one another will be changed for open source communication. This is no easy task. It pushes the critical need for knowledge management expertise front and center to measure the success of changing people processes. It will need to ensure the alignment and commitment to a collaborative business strategy. However, it has been found that teams engaged in boundary spanning are more likely to achieve team goals. Just be careful of how you collect and distributeculturally diversity information. Gathering this data and dispersing it into the wrong hands could pose serious organizational concerns. Everyone wants real time business intelligence that is critical to stay competitive.

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Creating a Professional Development Action Plan Using the ATD Competency Model

What specific skills do you need to stay valuable? Learn how you can prepare for the future faster by aligning your professional development plans to The ATD Competency Model, which defines what talent development professionals need to know and do to be successful across a wide range of roles. This session will introduce you to The ATD Competency Model. The presenter will cover all 10 areas of expertise, including three of the most critical: coaching, integrated talent management, and change…

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ATD Research Onboarding, Engagement and Development

Onboarding, engagement, and development program areas are all essential in talent management, particularly when an organization wants to retain employees. In this webcast, we’ll discuss the role that talent development plays in each of these key programs. We’ll also discuss the anticipated importance of these three program areas in the next five years.The data presented in this webcast are drawn from the upcoming ATD research report, Onboard, Engage, and Develop: How Organizations Improve Effectiveness, which will be available at www.td.org/developtalent in July 2017. In this webcast, you’ll also learn: – about the effectiveness of learning programs – how programs in these areas are being evaluated – the effectiveness of evaluation efforts.

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Case Study: How to Redesign Training for Better Performance

Amanda Painter shares insights on how Florida Blue redesigned a training program to meet increasing healthcare demands. Florida Blue empowered their new call center sales agents with the skills and product knowledge needed for success in the changing industry. This was done by updating their Sales Talent Management Program (STMP). For the complete case on Florida Blue, visit casebycase.td.org

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Sweet Success

The recipe for success at Just Born contains equal parts of executive commitment and reinforcement of a unique company culture. Meloney Sallie-Dosunmu, Just Born’s senior manager of organizational effectiveness and talent management, spoke with Learning Executives Briefing about the challenges of maintaining the unique company culture, while helping the company and its associates grow and achieve success.

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People Equal Competitive Advantage

With more than 17,000 employees in multiple lines of business in 40 countries around the globe, Mercer approaches talent management as a way to promote consistency via a single way of doing things, while supporting behavioral competencies across the company’s core disciplines. Deborah Wheelock, head of global talent management for Mercer, spoke with Learning Executives Briefing.

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Blow Up the Training Department

With more than 17,000 employees in multiple lines of business in 40 countries around the globe, Mercer approaches talent management as a way to promote consistency via a single way of doing things, while supporting behavioral competencies across the company’s core disciplines. Deborah Wheelock, head of global talent management for Mercer, spoke with Learning Executives Briefing.

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Onboarding for Managers

Onboarding is the process in which an organization transitions and assimilates new hires into the organization and their roles. The process navigates through HR policies, cultural norms, industry knowledge, and role success factors. The cost to hire and train new employees is very high; therefore, establishing a successful onboarding program is essential for an organization. This Infoline focuses specifically on establishing an onboarding program for new managers whether they are new to the organization or simply the position. You will learn how onboarding is a part of talent management and recruiting, key principles of onboarding design, technology tools and approaches, best practices, and how to apply onboarding principles to any new beginning within an organization.

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Leading E-Learning

A roadmap for harnessing the value of e-learning and leading an e-learning initiative within your organization. Learning professionals, team leaders, talent management executives, and anyone involved in learning will speed up their e-learning curve with Leading E-Learning. With a wealth of practical content, Leading E-Learning features “Your Turn” sections and a companion website with design forms, spreadsheets, and live examples that enable the easy application of concepts.

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Developing High-Performance Work Teams, Vol. 2 (In Action Case Study Series)

Have you implemented high-performance work teams in your organization? Volume 2 takes up where Volume 1 left off in presenting an interior view of work teams as they have struggled to become high-performance teams. It is designed for the practitioner who wants to see real-life examples of team implementation. Talent management professionals, frontline managers, supervisors design teams, team members, and consultants will find Developing High-Performance Work Teams, Volume 2 valuable because it covers a wide range of team issues and discusses specific interventions.

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