Sue Orr's Blog (20)

Attendance is not important for professional roles! Focus on results.

Attendance is not important for professionals! (This doesn't apply to unskilled positions or craft type positions- retail, manufacturing / etc.)

Focus on achievements and results, not what time the person showed up at his or her desk.  Is the work getting done?  Are they clients happy and continuing to do business with your company?  Are goals being met?  If you feel like that person has to be sitting at his or her desk at 8:00 AM sharp to produce results, maybe you need to replace…


Added by Sue Orr on May 20, 2015 at 11:22am — No Comments

Talent Management

Many of the speakers at the HR Symposium quoted the statistic:  "83% of executives (CEOs) now list talent management as their greatest concern" (or something similar, such as available talent doesn't have the necessary skills to be effective, etc.).  If that is the case, why is HR still treated like the red-headed step-child?  My experience leads me to believe it's because such a high percentage of HR practitioners are women and such a high percentage of CEOs are men.  If the same…


Added by Sue Orr on May 20, 2015 at 11:14am — No Comments

Integration and alignment

Knowledge Nugget 2 from the HR Symposium:

Integration and alignment are additional themes that kept coming up at the symposium.  Employees should be looking for work-life integration these days instead of work-life balance.  Work-life balance is very difficult, if not impossible, but work-life integration is doable!

All levels of the organization and all employees, vendors, and other stakeholders should have alignment and integration.  Departments, processes, and systems should…


Added by Sue Orr on May 20, 2015 at 11:03am — No Comments


Knowledge Nugget 3- Customization

Customization is another theme in business these days.  Providing customization can be one way to innovate (one of the previous nuggets).

Think about the various motivations of your employees; what motivates one is different from what motivates another.  While you do need to treat employees fairly, you don't have to treat them all exactly the same.  Figure out their individual motivators and reward them appropriately given their performance and…


Added by Sue Orr on May 20, 2015 at 11:00am — No Comments

Stop talking about "getting a seat at the table"

You've been talking about this for at least the 20 years I've been in HR- probably longer.  If it hasn't happened by now, it's not going to happen.  The next time I hear the phrase "get a seat at the table" or "getting a seat at the table", I think my head is going to explode (or at least spin around).   How about you spend less time talking and more time learning about your business and industry; then just apply the knowledge and deliver results.  If you know your business and your…


Added by Sue Orr on May 19, 2015 at 10:55am — No Comments


What really constitutes a Gen X-er?  One speaker I heard at the HR Symposium last week said that Baby Boomers have birthdates through 1975.  That pissed me off, because that puts me in the category of a Baby Boomer, which I'm not.  I'm Gen X.  Some websites and speakers on the generation say that Gen X starts with people who have birthdates in 1961; one says 1964.  One says 1967.  You can probably find some source that says a different year each for every year from 1961 and 1975 if you look…


Added by Sue Orr on May 19, 2015 at 10:41am — No Comments

Continuing Education Certificates are not currently available for the Symposium- BOO!!!!!!!

False advertising alert:

We were told our continuing education certificates would be available after the Symposium, but they are not available.  The website now says:


Thursday, May 14, 2015, 3:00 pm

Please note that SHRM has made last minute changes to the activity (session) ID's for the 2015 Gulf Coast Symposium. As a result,…


Added by Sue Orr on May 19, 2015 at 8:25am — No Comments

"The Power of Full Engagement"

Knowledge Nugget 2 from the HR Symposium:

The book, "The Power of Full Engagement" comes highly recommended to me.  I am looking forward to reading it and I am sure other HR professionals will get a lot out of it as well.

Added by Sue Orr on May 18, 2015 at 4:09pm — No Comments


I thought I would share some knowledge nuggets from the Gulf Coast HR Symposium 2015.  The first knowledge nugget is Innovation.  Innovation is one of the themes that kept popping up from different sources over the course of the conference.  Companies that don't innovate will become extinct.  It's not enough to just be good at what you do anymore or be a low cost provider.  Companies need to start re-thinking their mindset about risk-taking too.  Companies should not be trying to eliminate…


Added by Sue Orr on May 18, 2015 at 4:06pm — 1 Comment

Gulf Coast HR Symposium 2015

The Gulf Coast HR Symposium 2015 was May 13 through May 15.  I enjoyed it, but it was not as good as the last time I attended.  I was really disappointed in the Key Note speakers and a few of the sessions that I attended.  A few of the sessions were excellent though. 

I really enjoyed the session "Agents Aren't Just for Hollywood" on Axiology by Don Everett. …


Added by Sue Orr on May 18, 2015 at 4:00pm — No Comments

Offshore Technology Conference (OTC)

The Offshore Technology Conference (OTC) was held in Houston May 4 through May 7.  Attendance was down a little from last year, but I was happy to see that there was still a very high attendance level.  It was very nice of them to have a complimentary day since there is a large number of people looking for work in the industry right now.…


Added by Sue Orr on May 18, 2015 at 3:49pm — No Comments

We should be optimizing risk, not minimizing it.

Mara Swan makes an excellent point in "Driving Time to Value in the Human Age", which is one of the articles in the book "The Rise of HR", editors Dave Ulrich, William A. Schiemann, GPHR, and Libby Sartain, SPHR.  She says we should shift our mindset to optimizing risk rather than minimizing risk.  I'm sure you've heard the saying, "With great risk comes great reward".   Well, it follows then that if we take more risks (good, calculated risks), then we should obtain greater rewards.  By…


Added by Sue Orr on April 14, 2015 at 11:15am — No Comments

Turning Your Organization Upside Down

Turning Your Organization Upside Down- excellent blog post by Jim Clemmer about running a successful organization.

Added by Sue Orr on April 13, 2015 at 3:39pm — No Comments


“If the rate of change on the outside exceeds the rate of change on the inside, the end is near.” – Jack Welch

Added by Sue Orr on April 9, 2015 at 12:42pm — No Comments

Critical Thinking

I attended an excellent webinar on Critical Thinking today.  The speaker sighted some interesting statistics about how much need there is for training in Critical Thinking.  Executives view Critical Thinking as one of the most important needs for employees and there is a huge skills gap.  Higher education is not teaching / training people in critical thinking skills and college graduates are assessed by upper management as very lacking in that area.  Critical Thinking is one of the most…


Added by Sue Orr on March 25, 2015 at 1:52pm — No Comments

Succession Planning

I attended an seminar on succession planning today.  They made an excellent point that the company's strategies are only one part of the equation for success.  The best strategies in the world will not lead to success without proper execution.  The company's talent handles the execution.  Good strategies + good execution (talent) -> success.

Added by Sue Orr on February 26, 2015 at 4:58pm — No Comments

Shocking revelation about SHRM

I read in a LinkedIn post that the President and CEO of SHRM is not an HR professional, but a finance professional (a CPA).  I found that hard to believe, so I looked it up myself and it is true.

SHRM's website says, "Henry G. (Hank) Jackson is the president and CEO for the Society for Human Resources Management.... Hank came to SHRM from Howard University…


Added by Sue Orr on February 19, 2015 at 1:27pm — 3 Comments

Strategic HR

I attended an excellent webcast yesterday, "The Case Against Splitting HR: How to Become a True Strategic Advisor " through the Human Capital Institute.  The speaker was Dave Weisbeck, Chief Strategy Officer for Visier, Inc.  He provided some excellent, useful information.  He…


Added by Sue Orr on February 19, 2015 at 1:12pm — No Comments

Got Flow?

Are you creating Flow-inducing work environments for your employees?  "Flow refers to the experience of being completely immersed in a project or activity while experiencing joy or happiness (Bakker, 2007)" - from an article called "The Personal Side of Flow" in the Summer 2013 addition of Certified from the HR Certification Institute.  The article is written by…


Added by Sue Orr on June 21, 2013 at 5:00pm — No Comments

People are companies' best competitive advantage.

The Houston Gulf Coast Symposium on HR Issues was this Wednesday and Thursday.  The sessions that I attended were excellent.  Thank you to the exhibitors for their financial support!  A couple of the presenters mentioned that in a recent survey, more CEOs interviewed sited Human Capital as their top challenge than any other concern.  HR expertise is more important now than ever and it is finally being recognized.  Recruiting, engagement, and retention are now key concerns on the minds in the…


Added by Sue Orr on May 17, 2013 at 11:24am — No Comments


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