The summer of 2020 has thrown us all for a loop. What were once short-term crisis solutions – virtual and socially distant work environments – look like they are here to stay for a while. In late March, companies reported excitedly that, by and large, employees embraced the sudden shift and engagement and productivity did not seem to suffer. That was five months ago. Fatigue is setting in and, in many companies, employee engagement is waning. It is time, for companies to move out of crisis mode and get on with executing their strategic plans. To do that, they’ll contend with several challenges to employee engagement. Continue reading “Challenges to Employee Engagement: Summer 2020 Edition”
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I count 24 weeks since the music stopped. March 5th turned out to be my son’s last in-person day of 6th grade and the beginning of this never-ending summer. Since then, it seems like every facet of our lives has been impacted in ways large and small. As we emerge from the initial crisis and into a new – and potentially long lasting – reality, it’s clear that some of the changes will be permanent.
This week I spent some time with 20 or so business leaders who reflected on this question of “What’s changed permanently?” Here are some of the themes that emerged: Continue reading “What’s Changed Permanently?”
One of our own is moving forward with a major life transition. Katie Spencer is moving to Chicago! We are tremendously sad to see her leave Memphis, but we are grateful for the technology’s capacity to support our collaborative culture and allow us to keep working together. Continue reading “Katie is bringing PeopleCap’s expertise to Chicago”
As leaders face an overwhelming number of challenges and opportunities – two of the most common frustrations are the uncertainty and lack of control. Leaders want to know when this is going to end and what the world is going to look like on the other side. In many ways, both the present and the future seem out of their control. Continue reading “PeopleCap helps organizations move forward with purpose.”
Among all of the challenges and opportunities presented by COVID-19, there is a potential impact that that isn’t being discussed very much – if at all: The remote work situation provides fertile ground for unconscious bias. Continue reading “Unconscious Bias and the Remote Workplace”
The old adage “it’s lonely at the top” has endured for generations because it is a universal truth. As an Executive Leader, you are responsible for the decisions and actions of every employee in the organization. You are responsible, not only for making sure the trains run on time, but also for the overall direction of the company. Recently, the number of crises and urgent issues has increased exponentially – as have levels of exhaustion and stress. In the midst of trying to triage present issues, you are responsible for simultaneously finding the time and headspace to envision the future. Continue reading “You Don’t Have to Go It Alone: Executive Coaching Through Crisis and Beyond”
Co-Authored by Katie Spencer & Meg Crosby
We have all been swept up in a tsunami of change that hit us hard and fast and has left us disoriented, exhausted, and with miles and miles to swim before we’re back on dry land. As we look to the horizon and plot our course, we can expect to navigate this crisis in three phases:
1. Manage Risk & Adapt
2. Stabilize & Adjust
3. Grow & Innovate Continue reading “The Crisis in 3 Phases”
Companies are like puzzles with hundreds of pieces that fit together to create a picture. As a leader, you determine the ultimate picture puzzle, the share of each piece, and how it fits with the other pieces to complete the picture. Unfortunately, COVID-19 has taken most companies’ puzzles, torn them apart, and heaved the pieces into the air. Continue reading “Putting the Puzzle Back Together After COVID-19”
One night last week, my wife was online, as she often is before going to bed, and I found her amazingly excited about a DJ who decided to engage a worried world with a 9-hour dance party. DNice‘s dance party engaged everyday people and stars with dance music that took away 9 hours of anxiety and replaced it with a little taste of joy. DNice tapped into multi generations through numerous styles of music and got over 100,000 views. His sense of joy and compassion moved through phones, computers, and TV screens and uplifted us to help us cope with challenging times. He proved that we public speakers can reach our audiences and make meaningful connections through technology. Continue reading “Top Tips for Presenting on Zoom by Phil Darius Wallace”
I started working remotely about 12 years ago when we moved to Memphis. Working remotely full-time was not as easy as I’d imagined. And I stunk at it for a while. Probably for too long. I was productive in sporadic spurts. I struggled with time management even though I sat at my desk all day. I was distracted and frequently had trouble prioritizing. I didn’t check in with my team, all based in ATL, frequently enough for them or for me. And it all meant I failed to follow through on my own work and on theirs. Continue reading “I Used to Be a Crappy Telecommuter!”
Please join PeopleCap for a free webinar on Thursday, April 2 at noon featuring our guest, Jennifer Hagerman, attorney with Burch, Porter & Johnson. Jennifer’s practice focuses on employment litigation. She has represented clients in cases involving employment discrimination, retaliation, restrictive covenants, wage and hour class actions, civil rights, healthcare, education and numerous areas of commercial law. She also conducts internal investigations and advises clients on a variety of employment matters including non-solicitation and non-competition agreements, employee handbooks, and employee classification under the FLSA.
We’ll ask Jennifer to opine on the following top-of-mind issues facing employers during this crisis:
- What does the new stimulus bill mean for my small business/nonprofit?
- How should I think about the decision to layoff employees?
- How can I continue hiring in this climate when we cannot meet people in person?
These are unprecedented times for businesses to be sure. Many of us have worked remotely on occasion, but few have worked entirely remotely – let alone managed a remote work force. I’ve had the pleasure of working with and learning from some successful virtual organizations. Here are 3 tips to keep your team inspired, productive and accountable while working from home. Continue reading “Keep Calm and Stay Connected”
The economic impact of COVID-19 is far-reaching and potentially devastating. Many small businesses are facing the very real possibility of shutting down. Larger businesses are confronted with the possibility of having to significantly reduce headcount to survive.
We tend to talk about these business decisions using sterile business terms like ‘Layoffs’ or ‘RIFs’ – terms that are highly impersonal. But for most leaders, decisions about letting people go are intensely personal. Continue reading “Navigating Employee Layoffs in the Wake of COVID-19”
PeopleCap is pleased to announce that Co-Founder & Principal Meg Crosby has been asked to serve as an Operating Partner of Memphis-based SSM Partners, a growth equity investment firm focused exclusively on software, services and healthcare. Adding Meg’s experience and expertise to the advisory council reflects the significant value SSM and its portfolio companies place on their people, leaders, and culture.
Meg is excited for PeopleCap to be an official partner of SSM, and is proud to work with both SSM and their portfolio companies. Continue reading “Meg Crosby excited to partner with SSM”
There are multiple factors, completely unrelated to ability, that drive decisions to put employees in people management positions, including the desire to: attract and retain top talent; recognize and reward service; or the need for someone to manage a growing team. Often these ancillary reasons result in managers who can’t manage. Successful leadership development begins with leadership selection. Continue reading “Before You Promote”
I have worked with many companies who have described their culture first and foremost as “a family.” What they generally mean is that they greatly value the relationships that they have with their colleagues at work. Though there is nothing wrong with building strong relationships with your colleagues, I have found over the years that the “family” culture has a dark side – a lack of accountability. Continue reading “The Dark Side of the “Family” Culture”
Last year, I was asked to serve on a panel in Atlanta with senior executives of Cox Automotive, Rheem Manufacturing, and Delta to share insights on cultivating an effective culture. Cox Automotive, Rheem, and Delta were on the panel because of their vigilant commitment to maintaining a positive and productive culture for all of their employees. Collectively, they have over 100,000 employees, and their cultures are shaped every day by the actions and decisions of each of those 100,000 employees.
On my way to Atlanta, my Delta flight was delayed almost two hours. Fortunately, I was flying in the day before my panel, but most passengers were flying in for business meetings that day, and the delay was causing significant disruption to their schedules. Tensions and frustrations were high. Continue reading “100,000 Opportunities to Build or Dilute Your Culture – Lessons from Delta”
Innovate or die. The accelerated pace of technology disruption is putting companies under increasing pressure to innovate. But many companies miss the fact that there are two kinds of innovation and to win, you need to be good at both. Continue reading “Innovation vs. innovation”
In their first baseball tournament of the Spring, my son’s team found its way into the Championship Game. Late in the game, we had runners on first and second. We needed to move the runners around, but stealing was out of the question. Their catcher was throwing everyone out.
#21 came up to bat. He had gotten on base every at bat during the entire tournament, and this was his chance to remain perfect. The coach gave him the green light; but he didn’t swing for the fences. He laid down a beautiful bunt. Continue reading “#21 Culture Decision”
On a recent trip, I flew Southwest Airlines and read a great article by Matt Crossman in the in-flight magazine eulogizing Herb Kelleher, Southwest’s long tenured and beloved CEO who passed away in January. The article describes Herb’s leadership style and the legendary culture he created at Southwest.
If you follow our blog regularly, you’ll be familiar with our description of culture: “Culture is the boss when the boss is not around.” Herb Kelleher embodied this saying. Continue reading “Herb Kelleher is the Boss.”