Friday, March 25, 2016

Working Out the Changing Nature of Our Work, Part 2

Last week’s post about the changing nature of our work, generated more feedback from usual. Chris Shay, Global Sales Manager at ADP, Global Enterprise Solutions, said we were basically on point, but that the workforce has a way to go in terms of being comfortable with criticism. “For some reason, I find current feedback is a) sandwiched between niceties, b) given in a performance review as a one-time event to check the box, or c) not given because it's uncomfortable,” said Shay.

Shay also found that NextGen is better with constructive criticism in the workforce, “but unless you play pro sports, or work for [hyper-transparent hedge fund mogul] Ray Dalio, you likely have to solicit feedback. Maybe the point was criticism, which is raw feedback, will be rampant. If it can become constructive the business and the individual will gain,” added Shay.

Jennifer Johnson of Raleigh, NC-based Johnson Meeting Group, said NextGen’s attention is split more than ever by communication from different areas (social media from work, family and friends; email from work, family and friends and on-line entertainment." Johnson's advice? "Do SOMETHING noteworthy to grab their e-attention and then try to hold it by being RELEVANT to them. And we cannot have a bunch of 40 and 50 somethings determine what is relevant to the next-generation. We need young people’s input.
Our blog and website have more about this and related topics.


Whether you’re brand new to the workforce or counting the days to your retirement (and handing over the reins), the modern workplace moves faster with more transparency and flexibility than ever before. Longtimers can learn a lot about adaptability, technology and pivoting from their younger colleagues (i.e. reverse mentoring), but NextGen needs to respect not only their elders’ experience, but their ability to think on their feet, speak and present in person and build relationships while unplugged from the grid. As with most things in life, the truth lies somewhere in between the extremes.

Enjoy your friends and family on this special weekend. Best, HB


TAGS: ADP Global, Ray Dalio, Johnson Meeting Group, Millennials in the workplace

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Working Out the Changing Nature of Our Work

Did you see Sally Krawcheck’s post this week about career transitions and the changing nature of work? Yes, that Sally Krawcheck, once one of the highest-ranking women on Wall Street who left Citigroup during the global financial crisis because she clashed with management about doing more to protect clients who’d been burned by investments that Citi sold them. Krawcheck is now the CEO and Co-Founder of Ellevest, a digital investment platform for women, to be launched later this year.

We’re not here to plug Ellevest, whose goal is to
close our country’s “gender investing gap.” We’re here to call attention to career agility for employees, business owners and independent contractors alike. Krawcheck’s argues that successful careers will increasingly be built not by climbing the ladder at one organization, but by finding interesting work at many different organizations and building one’s skill base and contacts through strategically-planned lateral moves. Keep this in mind if you or a close colleague or client is considering a career “pivot.”

Most businesses are changing, pivoting and being disrupted at lightning speed. Krawcheck points to “the forces of technology and globalization are fundamentally altering any number of industries; that means what worked for decades won’t be a given any longer, she said. Whether you’re in media, financial services, technology or any other line of work,
Krawcheck argues that we have less job security than ever before, but more career flexibility and business startup opportunities thanks to cloud-based computing instead of buying servers, shared workspaces instead of multi-year leases, video-conferencing instead of business travel, crowdfunding instead of venture capital money or bank loans and freelancers instead of full-time hires. We couldn’t agree more.

Krawcheck offers five keys for success in the new world of work and we’ll weigh in on each below:

1. Successful leaders will ditch corner offices as well as a strong, decisive management style. Instead, the will encourage
open-mindedness, intellectual flexibility and an interest in understanding others’ perspectives. Our take: All good attributes, but without strong decisive leadership—and having an ultimate decision-maker willing to make tough calls, you are vulnerable to analysis paralysis and institutional inertia that plagues so many academic and not for profit organizations filled with smart, talented people. Also, whether you’re at the helm of a Fortune 500 company or the ground floor of a startup, company leaders need to close the doors to the office from time to time in order to think things through and have private conversations (see #4 below).

Embrace a certain intellectual discomfort and a willingness to fail. This one can be tough because Krawcheck argues that females tend to take a failure harder than men do, personalizing it. We agree you have to embrace discomfort and be willing to fail in order to get better—we don’t think women take failure harder than men. Failure’s hard for everyone. We all fail. It’s all about how quickly you can bounce back. Let’s not confuse willingness to talk about failure with feeling the sting of failure, Sally.

3. Get comfortable being criticized. Krawcheck says this is another tough one for women because “so many of us were socialized to prioritize relationships.” We don’t agree. You can’t learn or get better if you don’t receive constructive feedback from your clients, peers, bosses and subordinates, regardless of what your gender is—or theirs.

4. Give yourself the time to really think things through. Amen to that! We agree with Krawcheck that It’s more easily said than done in our hyper-connected 24/7 world. But you’ve got to do it. One thing that works well for us….turn off your email and text messaging SEVERAL TIMES EACH DAY. Unless you work in a hospital, air traffic control tower,  emergency dispatch center or missile control room, for how many things in our work lives really demand an immediate, ASAP, instantaneous response?


Finally, Krawcheck advocates “playing in traffic.” That means going out and engaging with people, getting a feel for a new industry or position. Don’t wait for a headhunter’s call or a colleague to pick up the phone—be proactive, she added. Or, as ancient Roman philosopher, Seneca the Younger famously observed: “Good luck happens when preparation meets opportunity.”

Keep plugging away. Listen to your self and make your own breaks!


Tuesday, March 08, 2016

Saluting Great Work by HB Clients

This month marks the 6th anniversary of the Association Adviser media channel that we created for Naylor, LLC in 2010. What began as a monthly eNewsletter for Naylor’s 11,000 trade association clients and prospects, has morphed into a robust website, blog, social media platform, web TV channel and annual industry benchmarking study with over 1,000 executive directors and CEOs taking part. During that time, Naylor has acquired an event management company, an online career center provider, an association management software company and an online learning solutions company. As Naylor has grown and evolved over the past half dozen years, we’ve been privileged to grow along with it.

But, Naylor isn’t the only HB client evolving and doing great work. In January, we helped Gary Klaben of Chicago-based Coyle Financial Counsel launch his third video blog, Grown Up Money, just for millennials and celebrated our third year helping Wayne, Pennsylvania-based Independence Advisors produce its Independent Thought blog. Meanwhile, Rochester-based Professional Financial Strategies recently launched a new website with a robust video and white paper library. Stephen Haidt, founder of Mobile, Alabama-based Retirement Advisors, Inc. has a new e-book, The Retirement Answer downloadable on his website. 

Paul Carroll, founder of Houston-based Efficient Wealth Management has a new financial planning eBook for United Airlines pilots. Christi Staib of Silver Sail Wealth Management, has a new e-book addressing the financial needs of widows and divorcees and Irvin Schorsch of Pennsylvania Capital Management has a forthcoming book, Reinventing Wealth: More Money, More Memories and More Meaning.


Keep up the great work. Don’t be shy about sharing your personal story, expertise and leadership philosophy with the rest of the world. You never know who might be reading or tuning in.

blog and website have more about this and related topics.


TAGS: Coyle Financial Counsel, Professional Financial Strategies, Independence Advisors, Retirement Advisors Inc