And other questions you’d rather not ask your own HR
Most of us work more than we live, which is to say we spend considerably more time at the office and with our coworkers than we do with the human beings we actually want in our lives. It also means that the stressors and anxieties of work become a significant part of who we are — and can be a real drag even when we’re not at the office. We here at MEL, however, don’t want all that stress to get to you — or worse, kill you. That’s why we’ve enlisted Terry Petracca, the hippest HR expert we know, to help solve all your work-related woes.
A good friend of mine told me that her Fortune 500 company had a division within its HR department just for millennial relations. Is this just another stodgy response to a generation that everyone obsesses over and doesn’t seem to know how to handle, or is it something that’s always happened with younger generations of workers?
Are millennials different? Yes! But so is every generation. And the distinctions among generations, which are real, result from the environment that shaped them. It turns out that what millennials want from work isn’t radically different from what other generations want—e.g., pay, benefits, job security and advancement. But there’s a perception gap between millennials and managers that’s creating a challenge: Almost 50 percent of managers think that millennials have unrealistic compensation expectations and a poor work ethic and can’t stay focused.
So let’s talk about millennials — those of you between the ages of 21 and 36 — and what makes you unique. Compared to Gen Xers and Baby Boomers, you have higher levels of student loan debt, poverty and unemployment, and lower levels of wealth and personal income at the same stage of their life cycle. You’re also the most educated generational cohort in history.
Since you grew up with the mantra of “I’m the boss of me” and see yourself as skeptical of institutions, you’re not good listeners. You also don’t filter comments to management and each other. So your managers need to capitalize on your strength in innovation and risk-taking. However, they also need to remind you that you don’t necessarily know what’s best (gently at first, dictatorially later); that innovative ideas are great, but you still have to deliver the goods; and that effort isn’t as important as results in competitive and short-cycle businesses.
Will you always be this challenging to manage? Maybe, maybe not. The impermanence of jobs, the rise of the gig economy and the relentlessness of debt are going to shape your mindset and actions for decades. Pundits proclaim that fewer homeowners, marriages and children are in your future as well as more freelancing and less retirement. This will shape your expectations and demands at work. Like Baby Boomers, who entered the workforce during the civil rights movement, women’s liberation and a“Question Authority” mentality, you’ll wind your way through the world of work taking the best of your generation with you. All the while, you’ll most likely hold onto your millennial ideals that make a difference in things like work-life balance and social responsibility and transform some of the things you currently hate like annual pay raises, meetings and performance reviews. And if/when you retire, you’ll probably think that Generation Alpha is so different from you that you’ll need an HR handbook on how to handle them.
In an earlier column, you wrote about how to deal with colleagues you don’t like. But how do you remain productive when you get along really well with all of your coworkers and default to lots of joking, especially on busy/stressful days?
I suspect it might not just be joking around when you’re under pressure that’s the problem. It can be just as time-consuming and distracting to have long discussions about Game of Thrones Season Seven theories as it is to joke.
Everyone you work with understands deadlines; they just have little regard for yours. The easiest comment to make to the team is, “Deadline here! Can you all pleeeease [stretch out the ‘please’ for emphasis] move away for a while until I get my work done?” It’s simple and to the point. Now everyone understands why you’ve been grumpy and to leave you alone.
But if that short and sweet request doesn’t get people to stop and/or move away, you’ve got to take more drastic measures, “ASSHOLES, listen up! My ass is on the line, and I need to concentrate! GO AWAY, or you’ll see my inner Cersei explode.” That’s a twofer: You let them know you’re up on GOT, but you also can’t have an endless debate about it at the moment.
In short, enjoy the fun and camaraderie, but if you have time-sensitive work and people are a distraction, you have to let them know.
Once an office cancer has taken hold, how do you keep them from becoming completely malignant? Or is that impossible unless they leave — either by choice or by being fired?
Office cancers take many different shapes — benign to malignant, to continue with this analogy. Benign workplace cancers, just like their medical counterparts, are superficial. These are the people who publicly say stupid shit (“When’s the baby due?” to someone overweight), act out in stupid ways (rudely leaving meetings before they’re done) and generally haven’t figured out that being a petulant child isn’t appropriate work behavior. Just like dealing with a 6-year-old, you need to continuously call out the bullshit and bad behavior (sometimes publicly, sometimes privately) to stop it. When all else fails, give them a time-out (i.e., don’t invite them to meetings until they can act like a professional/adult).
But when your co-workers are Machiavellian bastards (gender-free language here), they contaminate everyone and everything they touch. That’s the malignancy to which you refer. Subtlety doesn’t work on this group. In many cases, they know how toxic their behavior is, and they revel in its mean-spiritedness because they believe this is how they became successful — think bullies, liars and cheaters. If they’re oblivious to their Breaking Bad modus operandi, you’re dealing with an individual who is completely out of touch, in denial or a sociopath.
Malignant cancers can only be dealt with through intervention. Just like real life, wishing and hoping doesn’t make it go away. Get some brave soul to allege bullying or harassment. Then there’s the opportunity to investigate, assess and take action, including coaching, discipline or termination. Astute managers should also be attuned to changes in team dynamics, people not wanting to work with specific colleagues, whispers or crying. One thing is certain: You need to take action once you’ve been able to confirm the diagnosis. This is one case where having the employee leave is usually better for everyone involved.
Don’t just complain to your coworkers about everyone else you work with — let Terry help. Email her all your office-related anxieties at email@example.com. Or, if total anonymity isn’t required, leave a question in the comments below.
Terry Petracca has been doing HR for more than 30 years, for numerous Fortune 500 companies and startups and on every continent but Antarctica.
Originally posted on Linked IN by: Terry Petracca
At HotelTonight’s weekly all-hands meeting, HT Nation, we always end with an AMA (ask me anything). This reflects my goal of running a transparent organization and one where people freely give feedback to one another. I get direct questions about our finances, our strategies and our future plans. I love it. A few weeks ago, I got a great question asking what I was most proud of achieving at HotelTonight. Among the significant business milestones, I shared how excited I am about the culture HotelTonight has built and sustained.
It was always a goal of mine to build a company with an amazing team culture. A place where people will not only do the best work of their lives, but also somewhere they genuinely love coming every day, surrounded by people they enjoy being with. I wanted to create the environment that I wanted to work for when I started my career. Also, building a company is about the journey, not the destination, and when you’re on a journey you want to be with fun people. And it’s also good business – the team that likes and respects one another is more innovative and productive.
While we certainly have more work to do, and continually are gathering feedback from the team and acting upon it, I’m really proud of the culture that has emerged at HotelTonight. From what I’ve observed from my time building and working at startups, a key way you’ll know your culture is working is when people spend time together outside of the office or any company-sponsored event.
Here are a few anecdotes I’ve collected over the past few months to demonstrate what this looks like at HotelTonight:
The Company That Runs Together...
A bunch of us recently ran the SF Half together (my first and definitely last half marathon). Not only did a group train together, but one of our Regional Managers, Adam (who crushed the race, btw), invited everyone over to his house for a BBQ afterward – whether they’d run the race or not.
We also offer a subsidized gym membership as a perk, and it’s fun to see people heading over there together to try out new classes, or encouraging each other to squeeze in a workout. I’m a big believer in both the mental and physical benefits of exercise, and it’s very cool to see the team motivating each other.
Over the years, Team HT has taken many trips together, from big-group trips to Tahoe and Vegas to taking a work-friend on a hometown tour (as far away as Dublin!) to attending each other’s out-of-town weddings. We’re a travel company (with unlimited vacation), so I especially love seeing people bonding in this way.
The week before last, our North America Local Ops team took a travel week to visit their hotel partners all over the continent. Gaby, who manages Mexico City, invited everyone to come check out the city (New York Times’ #1 “Place To Go” in 2016) the following weekend. A group from teams across the company went, and it was awesome to see their Instas and Snaps (and made me want to go there, too).
One of the other sweet perks we offer is HT Roulette, where once a month someone wins a totally-free spontaneous trip for two. Your plus-one can be anyone, but it’s been so cool to see how many winners picked an HT coworker as their travel buddy.
Mates Across the Globe
We’ve got several offices internationally, and the team is so incredibly welcoming when they’ve got visitors from other offices. One way we’ve helped foster this is by having virtual “coffee dates,” pairing up people across teams to get to know each other (we’ve also done this in person within our SF office).
Recently Kelsey from the SF office was visiting the UK... and several people from the London office ended up joining her on a trip to Paris. And Donnie, our Strategic Partnerships Manager, just relocated to our London office. Serendipitously, a past employee he’d stayed in touch with had a room available exactly the week he was set to move!
It’s inevitable that people move on. But a mark of a great, lasting company culture is when people stay friends even when they don’t see each other in the office every day. Maybe they’ll work together in the future, maybe they’ll start a company with a great culture of its own, maybe they’ll be at each other’s weddings or will be travel buddies for life.
I’ve even heard from people who left HT for new opportunities that while they like the people at their new jobs, there was something special about HT that they haven’t been able to find elsewhere. If there’s any one indicator of a great company culture, I’d say that’s it!
I’d love to hear: is there one thing you notice that indicates a great team culture?
Originally posted on LinkedIN by: Sam Shank
If you've just returned from a summer holiday feeling blue, and with a longing to change jobs or even work abroad, you are not alone. For those of us coming back to reality but yearning for something new, this week will have been a prime time to think about what’s next.
On LinkedIn last year, we saw an 11 per cent uplift in the number of professionals logging in and updating their profiles during the first two weeks of September, compared to the month of August, as the UK headed back to work. We also saw a 24 per cent uplift in the average number of jobs posted on LinkedIn, as businesses look to attract those on the post-holiday job hunt.
With so many professionals getting their profiles up to scratch and more businesses on the hunt for top talent this autumn, it’s more important than ever to make sure you stand out to potential employers.
And, if you’re looking to conquer the “back to work blues” with a career move this September, here are some tips that will help.
1. Use your networkThey say it’s not what you know but who you know – and who they know! Make sure that you connect on LinkedIn with family members or friends working in industries or companies that you want to work for. This will make you visible to your contacts’ connections too.
Get in touch with them and see if they can help or give you advice – it’s one of the easiest ways to get your foot in the door at a company. It’s not cheating, it’s just making the most of your network.
2. Find the right jobsUse the “Jobs” tab on your profile to find listings within your industry and beyond, then apply for them directly through LinkedIn. You can easily set specific job search preferences so that you’re recommended roles at the companies you want to work for, as well as jobs that would be a perfect fit for you.
With a big uplift in new job postings expected this week and next, now is the perfect time to see if there is something that is right for you and apply.
3. Meet a mentorHaving a mentor is one of the best things you can do to help your career – whether it’s to help you grow in your current position or land a new job.
You can use LinkedIn to check out the people already doing your dream job and see how they got there, using that to map out the next steps in your own career, and talk to them about your development.
Once you’ve identified someone who’s a good fit, write them a personal message on LinkedIn that shows you’re genuinely interested in them as a mentor. Include the following three things: an achievement of theirs that you’re impressed with, your long-term career plans and, lastly, how being a mentor could help benefit them too.
4. Going globalIf your summer holiday has given you a taste for sun, sea and experiencing a different culture, why not consider a job abroad? According to our data, over 200,000 of our professional members headed overseas in their careers last year, with New York, Sydney and Paris the top destinations.
Switching countries doesn’t necessarily mean jumping ship. You can look into the opportunities for an international move or sabbatical within your current organisation.
Building a strong network within your company can really help you do this. If you meet international colleagues through work, keep in touch; you never know when they might be able to open a door for you in another part of the business.
This article and image originally appeared in the September 9th issue of City AM:http://www.cityam.com/249075/month-recruiting-heres-beef-up-your-network-and-find-mentor
Originally posted on Linked IN by: Darain Faraz
Dear ITT student,
This week, ITT Educational Services, Inc. (ITT) announced that it is closing all of its ITT Technical Institute campuses. For most of the world, that news will be covered as a business story or a political one, but I know that for you it is deeply personal. You are probably wondering what this means for your future; how it is going to affect your finances and your ability to continue your education.
In recent years, ITT has increasingly been the subject of numerous state and federal investigations. In August, ITT’s accreditor, the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS) determined that ITT “is not in compliance, and is unlikely to become in compliance with [ACICS] Accreditation Criteria.” This came amid increasingly heightened financial oversight measures put in place by the Department over the past two years due to significant concerns about ITT’s administrative capacity, organizational integrity, financial viability, and ability to serve students.
The school’s decisions have put its students and millions of dollars in taxpayer-funded federal student aid at risk. Last week, the Department of Education took oversight actions to prevent ITT from continuing to add to that risk. When we made that decision, we did not take it lightly. One possible outcome of oversight actions is that a school may choose to close rather than take corrective actions, which can cause disruption and disappointment for current students. Ultimately, we made a difficult choice to pursue additional oversight in order to protect you, other students, and taxpayers from potentially worse educational and financial damage in the future if ITT was allowed to continue operating without increased oversight and assurances to better serve students.
We are committed to helping you as you consider next steps. Most immediately, you have two basic options to choose between:
Whatever you choose to do, do not give up on your education. Higher education remains the clearest path to economic opportunity and security. Restarting or continuing your education at a high-quality, reputable institution may feel like a setback today, but odds are it will pay off in the long run. There are people and tools – like our College Scorecard – out there to help you pick a program that gives you a real shot at success.
I am proud of your hard work and dedication, and we will do all we can to continue to provide information to you on your options.
John B. King Jr., U.S. Secretary of Education
Originally posted on Linked IN by: John King
ITT Tech shuts down all college campuses, blames government; Fox settles with former anchor for $20 million, and more news.
Share this using the hashtag #DailyRundown.
ITT Technical Institutes will shut down all its college campuses following a “recent move by the U.S. Education Department to ban the for-profit college operator from enrolling new students who use federal financial aid.” ITT brought in $850 million in revenue last year but has recently undergone “federal and state investigations of its recruiting and accounting practices,” not unlike many other for-profit colleges. The shutdown affects tens of thousands of students and 8,000 employees. The small silver lining: Current or recently enrolled students may be able to get their student loan debt forgiven.
Fox has given $20 million as well as an “unprecedented apology” to former Fox News host Gretchen Carlson after she filed a sexual harassment claim against now-ousted CEO Roger Ailes. Following Carlson’s statement, six more women came forward with similar claims. The outcome “provides a relatively swift closure to an ugly chapter in the company's history.”
Apple’s cleaning its app store by “removing old, outdated and non-compliant apps” that could add up to hundreds of thousands of apps.The purge is “one of several, radical changes Apple has been rolling out to its App Stores in recent months.” Developers: Here’s what you should look out for.
#Stat$1 billion-Snapchat will reach nearly $1 billion in ad revenue in 2017, a huge “I told you so” to those who said the app had zero staying power.
Take that, Zuckerberg: India’s richest man is giving 4G to 1 billion people for as little as $2.25 per month, a move that makes Facebook’s Zuckerberg’s similar (but failed) Free Basics plan look like small potatoes. Currently only one-fifth of India has access to Internet, but the new plan hopes to reach 90% of India by early 2017. It hasn’t come cheap, though: Mukesh Ambani has spent billions creating the infrastructure to make his dream possible.
Originally posted on Linked IN by: Lorraine K. Lee
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