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Are you suiting-up for success?

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Suit Up

Picture the ideal businessman/woman.

We ALL know what they look like. We’ve been told what a “real” businessperson looks like since we were children. It’s ingrained into our cultural DNA. When it comes to the stereotypical business leader we still envision people like Don Draper from Mad Men, or Pat Bateman from American Psycho. Even How I Met Your Mother parodied the executive look every episode of the show with Barney Stinson’s obsession with suits (who he had made by Tim Gunn from Project Runway).

Perfect tailored suits, soft imported leather shoes, sterling silver cuff links and tie clip to match were for 50 years the armor donned by the business knights of the conference room table. Their sword was the executive fountain pen with cerulean ink; their shield the thick embossed business card inlaid on eggshell colored paper.

It is an enviable style of sophistication.

 

But, the renaissance of the power suit is coming to an end.

This is in no means an attack on the fine suit. I, myself, am partial to the three-piece suit and my silver tie clip. But, like everything – there is a time and a place. And that time and place is rapidly leaving the workplace … in a hurry.

Yeoman executives like Mark Zuckerberg, and Nicholas Woodman of GoPro are supplanting the old knights of the conference table. They’re men of the people; Robin Hood personified in some ways.

Zuckerberg has become famous for his “lead from the front” style of management. He sits in the general office space among his employees, not tucked away in the corner office. However, he’s probably more famously known for his dress. He’s the definition of casual executive; he comes to work in jeans and a sweatshirt almost every day. And some of the most powerful business leaders are adopting this style; because they’re beginning to recognize the impact it can have on their people.

 

The suit is dead.

Or at least it will be soon. The suit is still a symbol of power and firm leadership, but it is also cold and uninviting. What the power suit really says is, “Don’t approach me. I’m too busy,” and in our day and age that kills business development.

Think about it, is that the kind of message you want to send to people? I’m guessing not. Zuckerberg and Woodman are successful inventors, but they’re also successful leaders. A large part of their success as leaders comes from their method of management. They toss on a hoodie and t-shirt and work in the trenches with their employees. This makes them approachable and accessible. People are more likely to feel comfortable talking with them and having open conversations. There’s no aspect of fear.

You’re likely familiar with the figure of speech: dress for the job you want.

But I’d have to disagree. I’m not suggesting you show up to work tomorrow in sweatpants and flip-flops (unless you want a lot of attention). I’m suggesting you dress for the relationship you want to have with the people you work around. Make yourself appear available and amicable. Building strong relationships is the most important method for you to actually get the job you want. Your dress has little to do with it.

 

Okay, what’s the point?

The point is, there is a monumental shift in the nature of business going on, and we all need to be aware of it. Antiquated styles of leadership are being left behind in the twentieth century. They’re not suited (literally) for our organizations anymore.

More importantly, I’m stressing this example to demonstrate the changing landscape of business in the Information Age. If we, as professionals, aren’t aware of some of the superficial and lesser changes occurring in the world, they will begin to add up and take a hefty toll on your organization. With rapid growth and innovation taking place at unprecedented speeds, these transformations, if not accounted for, will leave you lagging behind. It doesn’t take much in 2015 to find your organization left behind – don’t set yourself up for failure.

You need to take a deep look at your organization; what else might you be missing?

 

As eQ’s Writing Specialist, Eric Stewart works his creative magic to tell eQ’s story by putting our Team’s concepts, ideas, and methodologies into words!

Posted in Culture, Environment | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Gals, Orientals, and the Stars and Bars: the damaging language ends with you!

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No Sign vector

The current spotlight shone on the Confederate Flag in the wake of the senseless, race-driven murders in Charleston, South Carolina, is one we would benefit from widening, just a bit, to illuminate any number of other aspects of our culture that long since have expired as relevant or appropriate.

It’s also a prism through which to better understand and to separate when tolerance is advisable from eliminating something that’s just wrong.

While not on the same plane as finally abolishing the symbol of secession, racism, and slavery, our workplace culture can stand a bit of clean up as well, now that we’re well into the 21st century. The connection is that symbols and language matter because they reflect feelings and, in some cases, evoke them. This isn’t a matter of political correctness; it’s a matter of correctness. Certain language reflecting outmoded and/or offensive attitudes are the most immediate and accessible area of opportunity.

Let’s take a look at some of the language that has to go in order to more swiftly propel us down the path of changing the attitudes they reflect … or, as needed, replacing the people with attitudes that won’t evolve.

Sexism – Women still are disproportionately impacted by words and actions in the work world. They’re not gals, girls, or worse. My wife (a lawyer with a terrific reputation in her field) was told recently by a judge her language (she used the expression “pissed off”) was not appropriate for a “lady.” Would this jurist have even noticed much less commented on this scandalous verbiage had a man said it? No! Women are the majority of our college graduates and in an increasing number of professions, and their involvement in leadership translates into greater success for our businesses. That woman leading your company is not a great gal; she’s a remarkable professional. And for my money, she ought to be pissed off to be judged by her looks or assumed to be any number of things from maternal to emotional … but she can decide that for herself. Women: please note that promoting gender stereotypes of men is no more desirable. Some of us take care of our homes and provide primary care to our children – and we know how to dress ourselves.

Racism – We’re a multicultural society and, as such, are sometimes challenged to be accurate with the most respectful ways to refer to our colleagues’ heritage or ethnicity. In general, the easiest manner in which to deal with this is – don’t. We know diversity and the inclusion of a variety of people defined by many variables (including work styles) is good for business. But, in referencing our colleagues, how significant is it we label them? If you need to know and don’t, ask. If you’re about to describe culture through generalization by ethnicity, don’t. I had a colleague who is a senior representative of a global consultancy refer to Asians as “Orientals” and tell us that a global non-profit of some significance was hard to influence through formal channels because all the “Latins” in the organization preferred to talk in office hallways. As with gender, once we start thinking of and acting towards our colleagues as such, some of these matters fade to the background. It’s not that we don’t want to know our colleagues; it’s that we want to know them as individuals, not labels.

Ageism – I’m going to go there. We now have more millennials in the workforce than any other single group. We also benefit from many workers at or near traditional retirement age. Age, experience, diversity, and inclusion are just as valuable as any other, which is to say – very valuable. Younger workers are not “kids,” by definition, nor are they slackers or technology whizzes just because of their generation. Neither are older members of the workforce tired and burnt-out. I have a 70 year-old friend who is a noted vascular surgeon and who has more energy than both of my millennial kids – combined!

We could go farther and deeper, but here’s the recurring and abiding theme: respect and celebrate the individual; eschew the label … it’s lazy and it’s wrong. We sometimes take seemingly unnecessarily long and winding roads to get to an obvious place – obvious, at least, once we arrive.

Perhaps, in the wake of evil, we’ve gotten to a place of greater clarity about the harm some symbols and the linguistic shorthand we use can do. If so, let’s embrace that clarity and accelerate the process of being more clear-eyed about our own behavior and that of others. Life is often nuanced; and just as often, there’s right and wrong. We need to recognize the difference and act accordingly. We need to become actively intolerant of intolerance. Appreciate the irony; benefit from the impact of demanding that the culture around you be a culture of respect of each person and all people.

 

Jeff Lesher, Principal at entreQuest, blends his deep knowledge of organization design, human capital, and leadership with a pragmatic approach drawn from his own business experience and eQ’s philosophy to help eQ’s clients focus on their core purpose and move people effectively to action.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Take the stress out of onboarding new employees with these 6 simple steps

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Yachting

Onboarding a new employee can be a challenge to plan, and can easily be overlooked. Research from Deloitte shows that, “4% of new employees leave a job after a disastrous first day and 22% of staff turnovers occur in the first 45 days of employment.” Ignoring these statistics could cost your company thousands of dollars. The cost of a bad hire is quite substantial. To avoid the pitfalls of improper onboarding I’ve compiled a list of six easy to follow steps that have proven successful with engaging and exciting new employees:

• Welcome them to the team. Starting a new position can leave some people anxious and nervous about their new venture. Send your team the new employee’s contact information and ask everyone to reach out to them prior to their start date. Whoever hired the person should send first day instructions three to five days in advance of them starting. Give them an idea of the dress code, where to park, and an overview of what they can expect in their first few days on the job. This is a great way to make the new employee feel more comfortable and excited about joining the team.

• Engage your team. Don’t just have one person be responsible for all of the training. Many people can be involved in onboarding. If you do assign multiple people to different training areas, it’s crucial that you give them an outline on things you would like them to cover. That way you aren’t assuming they are covering certain things and it serves as a guide for them on what needs to be covered. Have different employees go over the company value and vision, give the office tour, and walk them through the technology they’ll be using.

• Set the tone. Give your new employee a detailed agenda of what their first three weeks are going to look like. We recommend creating a schedule that breaks out each day. Not every hour needs to be accounted for, but during those free times you will need to have projects for the employee so they aren’t without anything to do. Examples of special projects can be things like researching current and past clients, reading through company content, navigating company specific technology, or reading articles on industry related trends.

• 30/60/90. Giving your new employee goals for their first 90 days is a great way to provide clarity and set expectations. To do this, I recommend breaking it down into segments. Typically the first 30 days will be simply learning, recognizing, and understanding the company’s vision, value, story and, brand attributes. Day 30 – 60 should be when job specific movement starts. This may include more specific training, or shadowing other colleagues. Once the 60-day mark arrives, the employee should be accountable for a project or starting to contribute to production.

• Create a tracker. Planning for a new employee is a lot of work. Create a document that you can duplicate for future employees. Think of this as a checklist of everything that needs to be done prior to the employee starting and things they needed to be trained on once they start like job specific training, HR training and, an overview on technology.

• Prepare! You don’t want a new employee to come to an empty desk. On the tracker that you create make sure you list out everything the employee is going to need in advance like: IT equipment, business cards, a parking pass, company content, and office supplies.

eQ specializes in onboarding processes. If you are interested in learning more about how to make an onboarding experience that will have your new employees bragging to their friends (who could then turn into referrals or leads), reach out to our team. eQ takes pride in our internal onboarding and what we have been able to do for our clients.

 

As Talent Acquisition Manager, Jessica Drew focuses on finding the right candidates to fit our clients’ needs. She works with our clients to understand the exact skills and attributes that would fit with the cultural climate and their environment.

 

 

Posted in Onboarding, Talent | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

8 simple steps that guarantee a remarkable interview

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Table Interview

In the modern and highly competitive, candidate-driven job market, it is more critical than ever for a company to evaluate and refine their interview process. This includes the experience your candidates have when interviewing. Remember, it’s not all about you. If you’re a hiring manager or decision maker in the interview process, YOU play a crucial role in creating a remarkable experience for each candidate. By doing so, you will be able to recruit better quality candidates and promote your company’s overall employer brand.

As a hiring manager, or decision maker, it’s imperative you bring your A-game to the interview room. You have to remember that you will not be the only decision maker in the room. The candidate can as easily turn YOU down as you can turn them down. If you’re doing the interviewing, you are the candidate’s first real impression of the organization you represent. Good candidate or not, you want them to leave your office with a favorable opinion of your organization. That’s precisely why we created these 8 simple steps to follow to ensure you don’t lead a lackluster interview ever again:

• Be on time! The candidate has taken time out of their demanding work schedule to interview with you. Respect your candidate’s (theoretical) punctuality and show that same respect. Your candidate may only have a specific amount of time to devote to an interview, especially if they need to return to work following your meeting. Cutting down an interview by 20 minutes is significant, especially if it’s something you can contribute to. You’ll likely need to rush to cover every element of the interview – and may likely show that angst to the candidate, which in turn might make your candidate feel that you’re attempting to rush them out the door … never a good sign.

• Greet with a genuine and inviting welcome. YOU and your team have extended an invitation for the person to come to you – and they just might be the next game-changing employee to join your company. It may sound simple, but greet him/her with a smile, a handshake, and then offer them a non-alcoholic beverage. You might think I’m crazy for even suggesting that the beverage should be non-alcoholic, but I was once offered a beer upon arrival to an interview, which made me wonder if it was a part of the company’s Mission, Vision, and Values they wanted me to experience during the interview (or if it was some sort of strange test to see if I would drink on the job). Regardless, envision your place of employment is your home: you are the homeowner and your interviewee is your guest of honor who has never had the opportunity to be “hosted” by you. It’s natural for your guest to be a bit nervous to walk into your home. A warm welcome is a great place to start to make your candidate feel immediately at home.

• Completely unplug. Never ever (I repeat … EVER!) use your cell phone, or any form of technology, during an interview! Your attention should be fully devoted to your guest, NOT to your iPhone. In my past life, I worked with a hiring manager who had an unapologetic, patterned history of cell phone use in interviews. Believe me, it did not send a positive message to the candidates. An interview is meant to be an engaging experience for both parties because it is your opportunity to see if there is a potentially mutually beneficial relationship to come. Use this time wisely and be fully present. There are, of course, exceptions to this rule. My former colleague once interviewed with a woman who greeted her and quickly shared how her daughter was expecting any day, so the interviewer let her know that she would have her cell phone on during the interview in case she received that all-important call. My colleague certainly appreciated her heads up but completely understood the circumstances and didn’t think twice about her cell phone’s presence. You have to remember we’re all human beings, treating each other like one goes a long way in an interview.

• Check your workday at the door. It’s no secret that most of our work lives involve heavily calendared schedules, which carry varying degree of stress and angst with our competing deadlines (and our all-around desire to win). But, do you and your interviewee a favor: check this angst at the door. There is nothing worse than an interviewer storming into an interview like a tornado carrying all of the day’s stressors on their shoulders, all in plain sight for their interviewee to see. Yes – you might be in a position of stress because you might be down a team member (hence why you are interviewing this person in the first place), but it certainly isn’t necessary to use this time to complain and vent about all of the things that are going wrong in your department, or at your company as a whole. (You’re trying to sell them on the company, not scare them away.) Instead, use the time to calmly share a realistic view of what this person’s life might be like in this role, what challenges the department is currently facing, what challenges this person might face if given the opportunity, and then find out if/how this candidate might be able to make an impact in the role.

• Do your research and prepare. If you already had a phone interview with that candidate, be sure to review the notes that you took during your initial conversation. You’ll want to strategize the specific topics that you’d like to dive deeper into, and brainstorm creative ways in which you can “sell” this opportunity and make the interview more personal. In this tight job market, it is critical that we show our interest in candidates when they walk through the door, especially for passive candidates who weren’t even job searching in the first place. During your phone interview, did they mention how they were preparing to leave for a long weekend at the beach? Ask them about their trip! Also, be sure to check out their LinkedIn profile and see if there are any links between you and the candidate. Maybe you went to the same college or high school. Or, maybe you are connected to that person’s former manager. In that case, reach out to him/her and get their take. If their feedback is positive, be sure to share that information in the interview. Acknowledging the degree of separation can make the candidate instantly comfortable if their interviewer knows people in their network whom they trust.

• Work with your recruiting partners to create customized interview materials that you consistently use. Be prepared with questions that you ask of each candidate, it is a great way to keep the interview process fluid and consistent. Last year, I attended LinkedIn’s Talent Connect Conference in San Francisco, CA (truly an amazing experience for any recruiting geek like me), and Google’s SVP of People Operations, Laszlo Bock, was one of the featured presenters. He explained how Google looks at the interview process as if it is a scientific experiment, so you want the experiment to be completely identical during each trial in order to produce a fair and accurate outcome – AKA the best hire. Pretty logical, right? Google does this by providing each hiring manager with interview packets, which include a list of critical questions that are tailored to a specific position. But, if a hiring manager asks questions outside of this packet, their feedback is completely thrown-out and they no longer have a stake in that candidate’s interview, no matter their status at Google. Replicate the Google way, and work with your recruiting partners to create interview tools at the start of any candidate search.

• Ensure that each candidate walks away with a positive experience, no matter if they are a fit for the job or not. Let’s be honest – we have all had those not-so-great interviews where candidates have raised some major red flags with rude or inappropriate behavior. But, regardless of their behavior and that candidate’s “fit factor” in the job, or at the company as a whole, it is critical that every candidate walks away with a favorable opinion of your company. Each person has a powerful network – and the inappropriate candidate’s network might be chockfull of awesome professionals that you want to talk to. You shouldn’t only think of your internal employees as “brand ambassadors” – your prospective employees have a stake in being brand ambassadors as well. Bite your tongue and don’t berate them; instead, skim over any questionable comments brought about by the candidate and ensure that they walk away with a good taste in their mouth about their experience.

• Show off your “second home.” Offering a candidate an office tour is a great way for that person to envision themselves at your company. I personally look at my place of work as my home away from home, so by walking your candidate around your second home, you’re giving them an opportunity to see the environment and feel the energy that permeates through those walls. When I first interviewed for my position at entreQuest, I instantly felt that energy when I walked around the space, which made me walk away with all of the hope in the world that I might return and be given the opportunity to join the eQ team.

 

If you follow these 8 steps I guarantee you’ll have a much more productive and constructive interview than you’re used to having. If you already follow some of these steps, make an effort to work the others in to your routine. The good candidates will always notice when you go above and beyond for them. At eQ, we try and make every experience remarkable, and we believe you should too. Get out there and Grow Regardless, and be sure to check back in on our blog for plenty of great information and advice.

 

As a Talent Consultant, Susie Landgren focuses on finding the right candidates to fit our clients’ needs. She works with our clients to understand the exact skills and attributes that would fit with the cultural climate and their environment.

 

Posted in Grow Regardless, Hiring Best Practices, Recruiting, Talent, Talent Acquisition, Talent Brand | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Apply these 4 lessons of fatherhood to your organization

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Dad drawing and tie

My colleague, Emily Cosgrove, recently blogged about the value and impact of employee surveys – if you listen and you act on what you hear. A former colleague of mine, measurement guru Joe Folkman, liked to say, “Only ask about things you’re willing and able to change, otherwise you’ll just piss people off.” That’s all true. Yet, there’s still a huge disconnect in many organizations between leadership and their teams – teams they say they value over every other asset … a sentiment I believe is sincere. Why or how is that gap possible? And what might we use as a construct of understanding from one’s broader life to help bridge that gap?

Perhaps inspired by Father’s Day and/or because this post was written on the day of my daughter’s 21st birthday, I think the point of reference that may resonate with many of us is how we learn to listen more (and better) to our children as they grow. If we don’t, we lose so much – including the opportunity to truly know them as their own person and to remain connected in a way that allows us to have influence. We can ask questions about things that matter to them, listen to what they say, and – as appropriate – collaborate with them to shape their thinking and action in a manner that reaps the greatest return. That’s a win for them and thus for you.

It’s all true, and it’s all well and good … but it’s freakin’ hard. Part of the reason for the challenge is that we begin our role as parents in telling and doing mode. We get used to it. Change of any sort is hard for most of us. Changing what works, what feels most efficient is harder still.

The parallel with management and leadership is that we likely grew up in what Frederic Laloux describes as Red organizations in his master work, Reinventing Organizations. The Red organizations are all about command and control where we don’t actively transition to a more facilitative relationship once we onboard people. Whatever the reason, we continue to tell and do well beyond the point that such an approach makes sense for any of us or for the organization. In our families, kids rebel in ways that force the issue. In the work setting, rebellion too often takes the form of a loss of engagement and then departure. We may never recognize the issue, or feel as though we have the chance to address it. So let’s be clear:

• High performing organizations listen to their people, but more importantly – they actively seek their input
• High performing organizations don’t fear being challenged by their people, they inspire constructive “dissent” to be better
• High performing organizations don’t wait to be asked for more opportunity by their people, they collaborate constantly about what’s of interest to their people and how to align those interests with the needs of the organization
• High performing organizations are dependent on engaged (and engaging) managers to grow their people through connection, development, and support

As parents, our greatest joy is seeing our kids succeed in ways that matter to them. As organizational stewards, we should take the same pride in the growth, success, and even movement of our colleagues. Let’s not only learn the lesson, let’s apply. Otherwise, you’re just going to piss me off!

 

Jeff Lesher, Principal at entreQuest, blends his deep knowledge of organization design, human capital, and leadership with a pragmatic approach drawn from his own business experience and eQ’s philosophy to help eQ’s clients focus on their core purpose and move people effectively to action.

Posted in Culture, Relationships | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

What PR really stands for (it’s not what you think)

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On the Phone

PR used to stand for public relations, but not anymore. Today it’s all about personal relationships. This is truly what business is all about. A recent Gallup article on building strong relationships had this to say,Remember that reciprocity is vital to maintaining strong relationships. Offer help, connect people with each other, or share industry information. Others will respond when you need help.” Really what this means is – a strong and healthy PR is a two-way-street.

I got to thinking about the concept of personal relationships during a recent phone call to a family member. We don’t live close and it’s not uncommon for us to see each other once a year. When we do talk, it’s important to make it count. But, in this instance, after I said good-bye, I immediately felt guilty. Why? Because I was on the phone while I was doing something else. I was quite literally phoning it in. I was in something called “continuous partial attention.” This is something I had no idea even existed until I read Bronwyn Fryer’s article Is listening an endangered skill?

What is continuous partial attention? It’s something we do every day and rarely notice it. It’s exactly what you do when talking to someone and mid-conversation pull out your phone and start checking emails or texting someone back. Admit it, we’ve all done it.

Well, on this day, I was doing it too. I was being a busy bee, running errands, driving my car, and thought – this is a great time to phone home. Well it wasn’t. The quality of our chat was subpar. I could tell she couldn’t hear me well and I could sense her annoyance when my attention was diverted because of a series of emergency vehicles zooming past me with their sirens blaring.

The truth of the matter is I was failing her as a good conversationalist. I wasn’t fully present. Hell, I was hardly listening, and the content of my speech suffered. I lacked depth. She sounded genuine when she expressed how it was a nice surprise to hear from me, but I would bet that she would have shared more with me if she knew I were sitting on my couch versus assessing traffic patterns.

So that’s the issue. We are all busy. We all have people we care about – family, friends, our clients, and our colleagues. Do them, and you, a service and commit to being fully present in your interactions. Because, at the end of the day, it is about personal relationships.

 

Alexandra Wieland is a Project Specialist at entreQuest and works closely with all eQ team members to provide employees and clients with remarkable experiences.

 

Posted in Alignment, Awareness | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

The truth about trust: Do people really trust you?

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Holding Hands

 

Trust is a complicated thing. It finds its way, both positively and negatively into just about every aspect of our lives – and yet, it’s often hard to identify or define. It’s more about a feeling than a definition. More often than not, trust “lives” in your gut and your heart – not your brain.

But recently, I heard someone break it down in a way I’d never heard before – he simplified it into this:

TRUST = Sincerity + Competence + Reliability

As soon as I heard it, it clicked. It was so obvious – of course! How could I possibly trust someone (or something) unless I also felt he was sincere, competent, and reliable?

But then, as I often do, I began to over-think it … it can’t really be that easy, can it?

What does sincerity mean? What about competence? And reliability?

So as I allowed myself to go down the rabbit hole of defining these mammoth feelings, here’s what I discovered:

First, I started with a dictionary …

Sincerity [sin-ser-i-tee]: noun, freedom from deceit, hypocrisy, or duplicity; probity in intention or in communicating; earnestness.

Competence [kom-pi-tuh ns]: noun, the quality of being competent; adequacy; possession of required skill, knowledge, qualification, or capacity.

Reliability [ri-lahy-uh-bil-i-tee]: noun, the ability to be relied on or depended on, as for accuracy, honesty, or achievement.

But that obviously wasn’t sufficient enough … after thinking a bit more about each word; I came up with my own definitions, ones that seemed more applicable to my life and my work:

Sincerity is being authentic and genuine; it’s really hearing and listening to others, and then taking an appropriate action. According to Towers Watson: of 75 possible drivers of engagement, the one that was rated as the most important was the extent to which employees believed that their senior management had a sincere interest in their well‐being.

So, what can you do to ensure your team recognizes your sincerity?

• Ask them what they think – really listen to their answer and ask thoughtful follow up questions.
• Give them responsibility and autonomy – let them know why you’re doing so too (because you trust them).
• Acknowledge and praise their work – and not just the outcomes, but the process or journey they took to achieve the desired outcome.

Competence is being an expert without being arrogant; it’s being so comfortable with a skill that sharing it with and teaching it to others just comes naturally. Now, not all competence is truly natural, for example a recent New York Times article concluded that wearing makeup (“but not gobs of Gaga-conspicuous makeup”) can help increases people’s perceptions of a woman’s competence. And we all know that perception is a reality … right!

So, what can you do to ensure your team perceives you as competent? It’s even simpler than wearing (more) makeup: you must be competent—and you need to refrain from doing things that demonstrate that you are struggling to keep up. Demonstrating an aura of competence can translate into a physical competence.

Reliability is being there for others, always. It’s keeping your word and being true to time commitments. It’s almost as simple as just showing up – and as Woody Allen says, “90% of life is just showing up.” But really being reliable to others is more than that – it’s showing up when you said you would, with whatever you said you’d bring.

So, what should you do to be more reliable?

• Make realistic commitments and keep your word
• Say what you mean, and mean what you say
• Ask really good questions – the more you know about a person or situation, the better equipped you’ll be in supporting them when the time comes

Now, while each of these words, including trust, appear complicated and hard to pin down, after dissecting each a bit and really digging down to the core of what each means, the overall idea of TRUST is rather simple:

•Be authentic
•Be an expert
•Be there for others

Trust is a make-or-break emotion felt in the gut that can be the ultimate deciding factor in relationships, particularly in business relationships. Establishing trust is at the cornerstone of human connection, so maybe it’s time we all spend a little more time trying to be authentic, be an expert, and be there for the people in our lives. That’s all it takes.

 

 

Emily Cosgrove is Project Manager at entreQuest and works closely with all team members to provide employees and clients with remarkable experiences.

Posted in Culture, Trust | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

50 is the new 20

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThat’s right “old-timers” … it’s your time to shine again. If you’re over the age of 50, you’ve likely reached a crossroad in your life. And I’m not talking about retirement. Believe it or not, but your star is far from faded these days.

What I’m talking about is you being part of the 35% of first time entrepreneurs who are over the age of – 50. Yup. You heard right. Of all of the business owners who launched their first company last year, 35% of them are in the over 50 category. The charisma and risk taking required of entrepreneurs is normally reserved for the young; the people who society always says don’t have a lot to lose. Well, that’s all changing.

It appears that the older workforce is not ready to go quietly into that good night. They want to go out with a bang. And why not.

Seasoned veterans of the workforce are primed for entrepreneurship. Realistically the entrepreneur over 50 stands a better chance of success than your recent-graduate garage (or mom’s basement) startup. Perhaps the millennial has stronger tech skills on their side, but that’s not enough to off-put the vast experience of an over 50. And in terms of networking, someone who has been in the industry for 30 years will have an equally experienced and strong network to pull talent from. Compare this to the vastly inexperienced network a millennial likely has, and the fight isn’t all that fair. It’s no Rumble in the Jungle, for my over 50s out there.

I hope this news lands on encouraged hearts. At entreQuest, one of our values is passion, and where passion was once reserved for the young greenhorn entrepreneur, who at the age of 20 has the whole world in front of them, it’s now presenting itself as a second bite at the apple. If your heart is calling you towards the creative license of independence, follow.

Statistics suggest that a large proportion of new businesses don’t succeed. Although these statistics can be largely misleading, it should not be a deterrent to anyone, especially those on the flip side of 50. As I’ve already illustrated, you would be entering the new business environment with tremendous advantages. You have more than one ace in the hole at 50, so your hand is looking pretty strong.

If 50 is the new 20, then you’ve got many years ahead of you to grow your new business into an incredible organization. Take full advantage of your experience. And as always, Grow Regardless.

 

As eQ’s Writing Specialist, Eric Stewart works his creative magic to tell eQ’s story by putting our Team’s concepts, ideas, and methodologies into words!

Posted in Culture, Grow Regardless, Success, Vision | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Do millennials find you attractive?

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Sunset and girlLaw of Attraction
According to the Huffington Post, by 2020, millennials will form 50 percent of the global workforce. At 77 million strong, millennials represent 24 percent of the total U.S. population. What are companies doing now to attract and retain millennials? The Law of Attraction is the name given to the term that “like attracts like” and that by focusing on positive or negative thoughts, one can bring about positive or negative results. Therefore, how can we attract millennials and retain them so this is always a positive attraction with positive results?

What attracts millennials? How can we retain millennial talent through attraction?

Culture
According to Deloitte’s 2015 Millennial Survey, “Globally, more than seven in 10 (73 percent) millennials believe businesses have a positive impact on wider society.” The millennial generation is very flat. The sense of “we” over “me” is much greater because there is technological globalization. When it comes to culture, millennials want to work for a company that is contributing to a worldly cause. Whether this is through a philanthropic initiative or the industry itself, millennials want to be a part of something more. Because millennials are virtually connecting to the world, they want to feel as though they are attributing on a great scale. Moreover, in a recent survey from Business2Community an overwhelming 74% of millennials surveyed said confidence in their leadership was a key driver of engagement. Thus, every great leader should follow the trend; leadership is to serve. The more involved a leader is in bettering the community, the more likely current and future millennial prospects will engage with that business.

Personal Development
Personal growth is an attractive factor when obtaining millennial talent. Deloitte’s 2015 Millennial Survey says millennials who feel a strong sense of purpose are more likely to: financially perform well (within a year), have a higher level of satisfaction, and encourage people to join the company. A sense of purpose reverts back to personal development. This development could be a title change, a leadership role, new responsibilities, problem solving, or enhancing a skill-set or focus. The millennial needs to have a clear vision of how their personal growth will be obtained. When millennial’s feel satisfaction in their personal growth, there is satisfaction in their performance. When personal growth and satisfactory (or above) performance are attributing to a millennial’s career the odds of them retaining employment with this company are much greater.

Social Talent Acquisition
In the last year, 14.4 million job seekers turned to social media for their next opportunity. As a result, over 94 percent of employers already use, or plan to use, social networks as recruiting tools. In addition they have seen enhancements in candidate quality, quantity, and employee referral quality and quantity. According to ZenithTalent, the numbers show a 49% increase in candidate quality, 43% increase in candidate quantity, and 32% increase in employee referral. Lastly, 25% of millennials share content on social networks, 3.6% more than the average. Therefore, employers who post opportunities for talent on social media, will have a strong likelihood of obtaining millennial attention.

There are numerous factors that contribute to attracting and retaining millennial talent: culture, personal development, and social talent are just a few. There are vast facets to each attraction. Companies who are looking toward 2020 and obtaining millennial talent while keeping them engaged, are investing in a lot more than the millennial generation, they’re investing in a healthy organization.

 

Kelsey Trundle, eQ’s Business Development Manager, is our front-line influencer for attaining and growing business. As the voice and presence of eQ in and out of the business community, she can tell the eQ story with absolute authenticity and passion.

Posted in Millennials, Talent, Talent Acquisition, Talent Brand | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

4 things you can expect when working with a recruiter

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Recruiting ImageIt should come as no surprise, but many organizations are outsourcing recruiting needs to consulting firms and staffing agencies. With this growing trend, job seekers are now faced with a new element to the hiring process. The days of seeing a recruiter as a road block are fading and are becoming a crucial part to the hiring process. As someone seeking employment there are many advantages to working with someone who is representing you and ultimately going to bat for you almost every day. If you are fortunate to find yourself working with a top of the line recruiter, below is what you can expect.

 

1. Help with your resume. There are the obvious pointers like formatting, grammar, and chronology, but the most impactful is often the content. It’s common for resumes to be modified for a particular position. Let’s say you have a blend of experience as an individual contributor and a sales manager, and you are applying to a management role. Your resume may only focus on your individual success, which is great, but employers may also want to see what your team was able to accomplish with you as their leader. When working with a recruiter, you can be coached on how to highlight your skills that are most relevant to the position you are applying for. It’s not to say you aren’t capable of doing this on your own, but a recruiter has more knowledge as to what a decision maker is looking for – since it is their client.

2. Stronger interviewing skills. When’s the last time that you interviewed for a job (with a decision maker) and at the end of the interview they gave you feedback on how to be more prepared or how to present a more compelling story? My guess is that only a few people can say this has happened. One of the perks of working with a recruiter is they serve as your consultant. They can help coach you and guide you on how to be more effective when you are in front of decision makers.

3. Level of detail. Recruiters ask a lot of questions, and sometimes it may come off as intrusive. We may want to know why you left every position and how much money you were making when you started and left a position. There’s a lot of reasons why this helps us understand you better professionally and personally. Did you take a step back in pay because there were other things more important to you like flexibility or an opportunity to work for a company with a better culture? Did you resign from a position because you felt like you were no longer passionate about what you were doing? Were you fired from a position because you didn’t meet quota? When an employer sees a resume blindly without a narrative, assumptions and judgements can be made. When you have someone like a recruiter who can provide detail and color around your resume, it brings your resume to life and helps create a story that can stand out from the hundreds of applicants that may have already applied.

4. Personality and culture fit. Understanding what motivates you outside of money and benefits, and what you like to do outside of work is so important to help make sure your goals and personality are aligned with a prospective employer. At eQ we openly say that our company isn’t for everyone, and that also holds true with our clients. Someone who may prefer working in a teal organization (check out Reinventing Organizations for more detail) may not mesh well in a company with more formal hierarchal roles. You don’t have to have the same hobbies as a future employer, but if you happen to and we let you know that before an interview, there’s an instant connection. Culture is a driving force for engaging top talent and it’s a recruiter’s commitment to help companies find individuals that will culturally fit into an organization.

Ultimately both you and a recruiter are responsible for building trust and forming a relationship. The stronger the bond, the higher the chances of achieving the goal, helping you find a job. Now that you know what we can provide for you at eQ, why not let us place you into your dream job?

 

As Talent Acquisition Manager, Jessica Drew focuses on finding the right candidates to fit our clients’ needs. She works with our clients to understand the exact skills and attributes that would fit with the cultural climate and their environment.

Posted in Recruiting, Talent, Talent Acquisition | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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