Welcome back to the Word on #LASHRM13! I can see that many of you got a kick out of the first day and I must tell you day two was no slouch.

But first…

A word on the power of IRL (in real life) meetings. This was my first opportunity to meet many of the people that I commiserate and chat with daily online. I can’t explain how surreal of an experience it is to go from seeing a snapshot of a human being online and to getting it “real and living color” in person. I don’t care how much you hear me talk about the power of social on this blog or elsewhere. The true power in relationships is in a handshake, a conversation, or a hug.  I’m not saying stop what you’re doing in social media now and go back to B.S. (before social). I’m simply saying where possible take those relationships you are building virtually and make them a reality. It is the greatest thing ever.

Now that I got that off my chest. Let’s continue the conversation about social media. My last session on day 1 (April 8th) was from Kyle Ferachi of McGlinchey Stafford, PLLC.  His session was called “Social Media and HR: Where are We Now? At the top of the session, he tells the group that “privacy settings are your friend”. I nearly shed a tear when the words rolled off his tongue. For a long time, I have wondered why all of these crazy people on social were getting caught with their pants down both literally and figuratively. I would ask myself “don’t they know about the privacy settings?” The Oohs and Ahhs in the room let me know that it isn’t much on people’s radars.

The next near-tear shedding moment was when he said the following:

Yes…yes….and yes!

It is time employers realize that social is no longer a fleeting thing. Employees are using social media and it is safe to say as Kyle mentioned in his session- that they are doing it on your time. Is it a cardinal sin that they are using it on your time? Maybe not. It is no different in some cases than taking a break to smoke or to gossip/chat with a co-worker. The key here is to be clear about boundaries, expectations, and proper usage of the tools.

To friend your employee or not to friend…that is the question

My best practice is: I am friends with my boss on LinkedIn. I will not connect with her on Facebook or otherwise. My reason is: my after five o’clock life is for me and none of her business and vice versa. The problem with all of this social oversharing and over-connecting is that there is an over-abundance of information. Things we would never have considered in a hiring decision ten years ago is now fair game. Check this nugget on considering social media behavior in a hiring decision:

Kyle’s answer to the aforementioned question was ” be cautious and use good judgment.” He could not unequivocally say “no” or “yes”. His cryptic answer should be taken at face value.

Kyle shared these nuggets and much more. It was refreshing to hear him speak as a lawyer who champions the use of social media.

In keeping with the social theme, Mary Ellen Slayter of Reputation Capital gave an interactive talk on internal communications, what is wrong with it and how to make it right.

Are you delivering a consistent, audience-specific message to your employees?

Chances are if you are blindly e-mailing newsletters and other one-size-fits-all correspondence to employees- you are missing the mark. According to Mary Ellen:

Since you should be selling them on all things having to do with your company, why not tailor your message to the various groups? Shouldn’t you also make it worth their while to read? How about giving shoutouts to your employees for a job well done on your intranet or newsletter? The overarching lesson here is: get creative, give praise, get social, and use technology to aid you in knowing what works and what doesn’t. I loved this session.

Other concurrents that rocked the day were that of my good friend Sarah Williams of Luihn Food Systems, Inc and my HR Tech Godfather, William Tincup,SPHR.

Sarah and her super sleuth session was everything you needed to make the ever-draining employee investigations exciting and fun. She uniquely tied the steps in conducting a criminal investigation as seen on t.v. to some savvy tips on how to conduct a proper and thorough investigation. There are too many nuggets to share,but my favorite term of the day was her cleverly coined “HR-anda Rights”. Like “Miranda Rights” this is where the “perp” is advised of their rights as it pertains to the investigation being conducted. It is clever and right on. I have been involved in way too many instances where no expectations were set and all parties involved were disappointed.

In case you missed it a nugget on Sarah’s #sleuth thread:

If you missed this thread, be sure to get the slides from the LASHRM  2013 Conference website. Even seasoned investigators can learn from her.

All hail WilliamTincup!

This session was purely for us HRIS or gatekeepers of HR technology. The beauty in this session was not in the slide deck, but in his openess to having a real conversation about the applicant tracking system landscape and roadblocks and hurdles us techies face. I think we all left there a lot smarter about negotiating our HR Tech contracts and dealings with vendors.

So many nuggets from this session, but here is the quote of the day regarding HR Tech:

The Bill Boorman Show

“The Cult of Work” general session was great and then confusing if you weren’t there. Bill Boorman is helping companies everyday to understand culture and move it forward. He has a lot of ideas about how culture in the workplace has reached it’s current resting place- not all I agree with.

The first concept from this session that I had to peaceably disagree with was the following: “There are no bad cultures, just bad culture fit.”

I understand his point which is- if we hire the right people for our culture it is the right fit and no one can in turn find it to be a bad culture. Certainly, it is reasonable to hire the people that speak your language, but isn’t it just as important to have those that speak a different language? Aren’t those the innovators and change influencers? Having worked in what I felt were cesspool cultures- I have to disagree with the “no bad culture” theory. I will admit that my way of thinking and working may not have been a fit and perhaps that is why it didn’t work out. Nevertheless, I still think that some cultures are about likeness and therefore diversity of thought and practice are not welcomed. If an innovator type joins a non-innovative organization it might be poor fit, but there’s no question that even a non-innovative culture could stand to learn something from that “poor fit”.

To hear & see Bill Boorman is to understand him. Here is the nugget of the day captured by Christine Assaf:

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