HR Transform 2018 – Lessons Learned

At the beginning of the month, people professionals from around the country came together for HR Transform 2018 in Las Vegas.  The event showcased discussions around best practices for scaling organizations, culture, implementing wellness initiatives and how to address the needs of millennial employees.  A special shout-out to Natalie King, Senior HRBP at SeatGeek for taking copious notes at the event so that we could share this recap with you.

As human resources takes on a larger role in an organization’s overall growth, expansion, and business outcomes, it’s important to focus on creating a great culture where individual’s want to work and grow with the company.

Industry leaders at HR Transform shared great insights on what we should and shouldn’t be doing.

Below are five take-aways from HR Transform 2018:

1. Provide More Feedback- As performance reviews are in progress, rethink your approach. Is your workforce comprised of Millennials? The review process is changing due to new technology for performance tracking, perspectives are shifting to focus more on understanding people and addressing the fundamental issue of managers not providing regular and meaningful feedback. Particularly in Millennial workforces, continuous and instant feedback is being craved. Look to improve your feedback loop and train management on how to provide more meaningful and constructive feedback regularly.

2. Adapt People to Your Culture- Don’t Adapt Culture to People- A topic that has been discussed in many articles before- don’t hire for a cultural fit. When hiring talented individuals, don’t adapt your culture to the company, the individual needs to adapt to the culture you are trying to create. Ask yourself- who is leading the culture initiative? Culture should be led from the top/leaders- if leadership is exhibiting what you want your culture to represent, others in the organization will soon follow.

3. Don’t Get Yourself into Cultural Debt- Cultural debt is when organizational promises are given to people and they are broken. Unlike broken code in your product platform, fixing broken promises to your team may not be as easy. When working on defining what your culture is and what you want to represent, make sure your initiatives and objectives are scalable. To prevent cultural debt, create an action plan both organizational-wide and for departments.  Create realistic “baby steps” to accomplish each goal.

4. Invest in Leadership Training- Investing in leadership seems obvious, but having leadership qualities is a soft skill that has seemed to have dwindled in the workforce. Soft skills and critical thinking are among the top 10 skills needed for great leadership. As you look to create a leadership training program, consider: being people-centric versus employee-centric and create metrics and measurements to quantify the impact of leadership success internally and operationally.

5. If Implementing a Wellness Program, Make it Well-Rounded-  Having a wellness program and great benefits/perks is a must to attract and retain top-talent. But where do you start when looking to create a program? First, understand the needs of your population- i.e. don’t implement a smoking cessation program if you don’t have smokers. Next, develop a program that is well-rounded- focus on physical activity, nutrition, health, and financial wellness, but don’t try to do it all at once! Implement these initiatives in phases so neither you, your team or employees feel overwhelmed. Ensure you have clear communications and when you see an initiative is really working- double down on it!

While there are many areas to focus on from an HR perspective, these five takeaways are a great place to start. By focusing on culture, wellness, training, and feedback, you can develop a great organization where talented individuals want to work.  When the talent comes your business will blossom!

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