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 executive suite, not just in the HR department.

In the current global economy, people are often the competitive advantage.

Some of my favorite quotes / nuggets from the presenters are:

“You get to decide what has meaning for you and what doesn’t.”  This is from the video on YouTube “This is water” by David Foster Wallace which I learned about in the session “4 Secrets for Facilitating Good Decisions” by Greg Davidson.

“Work like you don’t need the money.  Love like you’ve never been hurt….” – Aurora Greenway in Terms of Endearment  by Larry McMurtry.  This is also from the session “4 Secrets for Facilitating Good Decisions” by Greg Davidson.

Get your employees who are not engaged to “BOOGEE- Be Outstanding or Get Engaged Elsewhere” from Christine Cashen (one of the keynote speakers for the event).

Don’t let your expectations or others’ expectations of you limit you.  This is from the session “The Titleless Leader” with Nan Russell.  She has a book by that name as well.

A recent study shows that Boomers had 11.3 jobs on average from ages 18 to 46.  Millennials will have 17 jobs by age 30 on average.  (I wish I had specifics on the survey so I could document this properly, but most of the presenters didn’t have handouts this year, so I don’t know who the survey source is.)  This survey was mentioned by 2 of the presenters; one was Pamela Stroko in “Winning the War for Talent in a Time of Talent Paradox”.  I really wish that hiring managers would get over their “job hopper” hang-up!  Welcome to 2013- it is normal to change jobs; it is time to face reality.  Yes, sometimes people change jobs because they are not good performers or they are just looking for more money, but often people change jobs now because the company isn’t good enough for them rather than vice-versa; also, sometimes the company goes out of business or gets acquired, etc.  Why not find out someone’s reason for changing jobs rather than just writing him/her off as a job-hopper?

“Don’t take up space in someone else’s dream job.” Also from Pamela Stroko in “Winning the War for Talent in a Time of Talent Paradox”. 

“Reward your people for making incremental improvements, not just meeting stretch goals”- from Lisa Rueth in “Too Busy Working IN the Business to Work ON it?”

We are now in “The Experience Economy” – from Thursday’s keynote speaker, Ryan Estis.   Top companies are now focusing on creating a memorable (in a good way) experience for their customers rather than selling a product or service.

Convert your employees into “Brand Evangelists” - also from Thursday’s keynote speaker, Ryan Estis.   “Your employees will treat customers the way you treat them.”

This is the age of “Social Power” and “Rock Star HR” - also from Thursday’s keynote speaker, Ryan Estis.

“You can only grow your company as fast as you grow your people.” – from David Packard quoted by Teri Hill in her presentation “Catapult from Good to Great.”

 

 

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