We hear this often from our small and medium sized clients quite often. They have been so busy "in" the business they haven't had time to work "on" it. When they do look up they find their business is 'stuck' and they are not quite sure what to do about it. 'Stuck' can look like many things, it could be rapid growth, a big project/contract, lack of consistent processes, the wrong people in the wrong seats (or the right people in the wrong seats), lack of a clear vision or plan for the future, not having everyone on the same page, a lack of data to make solid decisions... the list is endless.
What we see are CEOs and Executive Teams finding themselves in a quandary and not sure how to get out of it. I've been there and understand it completely and looked around to find the right kind of solution myself. I am a natural skeptic so I want tried and true, proven but easy-to-use tools and systems to get things done. I was attending a multi-day certification program and sitting at lunch when my table-mate sitting next to me shared Gino Wickman's book, "Traction" with me. I flipped through it that night and poked around the website that evening and was convinced that I had found a great solution to my issues. The concepts were simple, the tools are straightforward, and the methodology is tried and very sound.
Years later I find myself offering the Entrepreneurial Operating System (EOS) to our own clients because it is just such an elegantly simple methodology and toolbox...and it works!
EOS helps entrepreneurs get what they want from their business.
EOS does three things we call Vision, Traction, Healthy:
Want to learn more, you can hear directly from Gino Wickman in the quick YouTube video below and check out our website: http://www.hcm2020.com/learn-more-about-eos.html to learn more about how we can facilitate the EOS process for your organization.
"Indeed, companies spend more than $2 trillion on acquisitions every year. Yet study after study puts the failure rate of mergers and acquisitions somewhere between 70% and 90%." Harvard Business Review
2013 has proven to be quite the year for re-evaluation and assessment of where current business stands. Whether it is a part of a growth or exit strategy, many entrepreneurs, CEOs and executives have had the conversation "what do we do next" and the concept of a merger or acquisition most certainly crosses the minds of most. But, are you ready for it?
It is common knowledge to recognize the importance of the legal and financial aspects of a merger or acquisition but few consider the third piece of this puzzle, the people. If your business value is based on the output of the knowledge, talent and skills of your people for its success then this third leg of the M&A stool has to be not only considered but needs to be a major focus of your efforts.
People and Culture. This is the third leg of the M&A stool that wasn't factored into industrial age acquisition plans for M&A advisory firms. The result is the 70-90% M&A failure rate of the 21st century. The reality is, in 2014 and beyond, the knowledge economy is a very different beast and requires a savvy and wise approach to the entire M&A process, a fundamental shift in how mergers and acquisitions have been done in the past.
Here are five things to consider assuming the finance and legal aspects have been addressed:
In the end, successful mergers and acquisitions need solid legal and financial advice but they ALSO need a strong (and real) evaluation of your people and culture to be a part of the 30%. Best of luck!
Those who know me know I've been writing about HR metrics and data for years (see April 2011 HR Armed with Data). It's been a topic on my various blogs but I am really happy to finally see the topic has spread throughout the business and HR worlds. Today you can find plenty of information on the topic.So what has me writing another blog post on the topic? ...the conversation has finally shifted from the boring, and not-so-telling, metrics of time to hire and butts in seats, etc. to things that are meaningful to business leaders...people.
Yves Lermusi (@YvesatCheckster), wrote a blog post back in early June entitled, "The Quest for Quality of Hire". It was an ERE Conference session with speaker Rob McIntosh (@TheRobMcIntosh), senior vice president of global talent acquisition and recruitment of Avanade. All I can say, it's a great start to the conversation about HR metrics.
My take on the entire topic of HR metrics? It's a necessary evil that I have a fascination with. Why? Because metrics help us ground ourselves in reality, something that has been greatly lacking when it comes to people in the workplace. And without getting myself too worked up about that, metrics - data- real information - gives us a "real" picture about where we stand. The other big reason is that business loves data points, and as long as your data sources and methodology can be explained, the data can be useful to help get additional resources for human capital. Oh yes...and things like M&A, etc. want data...yes that too!
So back to our topic on QoH!
Quality of a Hire (QoH) is really a key, universal business driver. This one metric will tell you a lot about the quality of your recruiting organization BUT it also tells you a lot about hiring manager expectations and the communication around that. So the QoH metric is a multi-function, multi-departmental responsibility; which, I would argue, you want as an executive.
This metric can tell you several things (this is not an exhaustive list):
I could come up with more, but these are the first that come to mind.
The dilemma of determining the QoH metric is that for every question above, can you determine a quantifiable number?. It requires standardization of what are typically subjective measures of success (i.e. performance reviews, for example but pick any of the 6 above and you see what I mean). [Side note, yet another reason I greatly dislike the concept of using performance review data in business analytics.]
If your organization is looking for a key HC metric, start by working on this one first. How is a "quality hire" measured in your organization, and by whom? How could it be measured, what parameters are collected or would need to be? There are a lot of great questions that surround this. Lermusi points out that setting clear expectations of hiring managers ahead of time is one of the biggest obstacles to quality hire success because most managers know they need a person in a position but can't articulate exactly "what" they need...or at least in a meaningful and quantifiable way.
At HCM2020, we use a series of tools called the "Kolbe Wisdom" to do just that...identify in a meaningful and quantifiable way, the expectations of the hiring manager. We can then map a candidate's likelihood for success based on another Kolbe Index, to determine whether the candidate's natural way of working matches with the expectations of the hiring manager. Again, we can get quantifiable data measured during the hiring process and again at intervals throughout the candidate's first year of employment to show alignment or misalignment.
There are other numbers that would be factored in the QoH metric, and those have to be tailored to individual organizations, but I am so thrilled to finally see meaningful conversations about one important metric, the Quality of Hires.
Thanks to Rob for sharing his thoughts at the ERE conference and thanks to Yves for continuing the conversation!
At an event a few years ago, I was asked what I thought was the number one thing that organizations needed to focus on in the current economy. My answer is always the same...your people. "Take good care of your people in this economic downturn, especially the ones you want to keep, because when the economy picks back up those organizations that take good care of their people will retain them, and those that don't will see them leaving." But as things go, the economy went farther south than anyone was expecting and 'taking care of your people' was hard to do. I get this. However, what we are seeing in the workplace is exactly what I had predicted. Great employees are now looking for a better opportunity, a better culture, authentic leadership, a great place to work, a bit more flexibility...all sorts of things and they are not always about 'more money'.
Among our research efforts, we track the job search market here in the DC Metro area to see who is hiring and why. Where are people going? Which organizations have a large number of openings, and why.. all of these things give us clues as to what is really happening in the marketplace.
What can you do if you seem to be loosing some of your best talent? Four things:
See a few key themes here? Real data and information is critical. Getting real about the situation and coming to terms with reality. Being authentic and speaking truth to your employees. Examining culture is critical. All of these things lead to a healthy organization and help to retain your best talent who remain during a healthy economy as well as the downturns.
Amy Riccardi is the Chief People Officer and Founder of HCM2020. She's a guest lecturer at Georgetown and George Washington Universities and works with executive teams and CEOs to help scale and grow their business.