HR Lagniappe

Louisiana SHRM


Leave a comment

Curse Words & Racial Slurs: Guest Post

Today’s post is from Chris Fields who is a member of the #lashrm14 Social Media Team.  Chris is an HR professional and Expert Resume Writer with over 13 years of experience as a former practitioner and current HR consultant. He is the curator of two websites; CostofWork.com and The ResumeCrusade and contributes HR focused content to many others, includingPerformanceIcreate.com and SmartRecruiters.  Follow Chris on Twitter

**********

clear as mudOur love affair with the “N-word” just keeps on – who can say it? Should we say it? Rappers say it, why can’t I say it? We are taking our community language and behavior into the workplace. Community language is the type of communication you do at home or around your friends and family – your community. When I was growing up, there were things you said at home and things you never said outside the home. Not anymore – everyone wants everyone else to know all about them. They bring their cursing and insensitive attitudes into the workplace.

Maybe you are not a fan of the NFL so you haven’t heard about the Miami Dolphins firestorm. The Dolphins are in the midst of a headline grabbing situation involving 2 offensive linemen. In October Lineman Jonathan Martin abruptly left the team in the middle of week.  It was reported that he was a victim of teasing by his fellow offensive linemen.  As more information became available we learned that he was hazed unmercifully by some teammates.

As many questioned Martin’s manhood – how does a 300lb man allow another man to bully him – the face of the bullying appeared, it was Lineman Richie Incognito (real name). The bully also has a voice – he left voice messages calling Martin a “half n—-er, piece of sh-t”. And Incognito even threatened to kill Martin and his mother. Incognito has a history of aggressive behavior, he was kicked off 2 college teams and the St. Louis Ram released him because of his bad attitude. But now we are hearing that the coaches in Miami told Incognito to toughen up Martin. We are also learning that Richie Incognito and Martin talked to each other this way all the time.

This story is still unfolding everyday but the NFL locker room – all sports locker rooms will forever be changed by the Dolphins situation. The NBA has already issued a statement to all teams that any and all hazing is to stop immediately and no more “n-word.”

Is this common? Does it happen everywhere? Well…

Recently, I went to the store to purchase some fruit and veggies and the 2 check out girls were talking to one another, the one girl says “That b*tch know I don’t fool with her a** like that!” and they both laugh. My face clearly showed my reaction to the comment, and the girl says “I’m sorry, we just talking.” I wanted to respond “I know you are talking, but did you know I can hear you and it’s not cool?”

A former co-worker reminded me that in her department many of the employees refer to each other as rednecks, now with the whole Jeff Foxworthy thing – maybe you don’t consider that racial but it totally is.  Imagine if a group of blacks used THAT word; you know the word, to refer to each other – hopefully you would be offended.

One of my HR homies, who will remain nameless for the sake of this article, often shares some of the ridiculous things that happens in her line of work. Things like sex at work, drugs, cursing and fighting in the workplace – we call it #HoodHR.

All of this has me thinking…we need to ask some obvious and blunt questions before hiring. Oh, I know, you will say, “Well, you need to review your hiring procedures – where are you finding your people?” Oh, and you’re probably thinking, “You aren’t managing well enough.”

Look, people change. They lie to you to get hired, but there is something about documentation and clear expectations that could help also.

How about instead of spending a bunch of money on assessments we just get real with some people. For instance in the interview we ask questions like these.

  • Do you know that using racial and sexual slurs and curse in the workplace is wrong and you can and will be fired for it?
  • Do you know that sex at work is wrong and you can and will be fired for it?
  • Do you know that bullying and intimidation at work is wrong and you will be fired for it?
  • Do you know that fighting which includes heated arguments is not permitted at work and you can be terminated for it?

These may seem obvious to you but they are not. Read this article from Mike Haberman about a guy who called his boss a “f—king clown” because he didn’t agree with his performance evaluation and the guy didn’t see anything wrong with it. In fact he tried to sue for wrongful termination, saying that heated discussion should be expected at work.

Maybe we need to make our rules, guidelines and expectations more clear because what’s clear to you or me, seems to be clear as mud to employees.

**********

this post originally appeared at Cost of Work


1 Comment

November #SHRMChat – Diversity & Inclusion

shrm_diversity_logoNext week (Tuesday, 11/12/13) it’s time for #SHRMChat on Twitter!  These chats are based on the SHRM Core Leadership Areas (CLAs) and began with an idea from the fabulous Joan Ginsberg.  Each monthly chat is sponsored/hosted by either a state council or local chapter and we are thrilled that Louisiana SHRM is hosting the November chat.  If you have never participated in a Twitter chat before, follow this link for some easy directions.

One of the CLAs that SHRM has classified as a necessary HR discipline is “Diversity” and most (if not all) chapters and state councils have a volunteer leader tasked with oversight of this CLA.  SHRM’s definitions are as follows:

  • Diversity“the collective mixture of differences and similarities that includes for example, individual and organizational characteristics, values, beliefs, experiences, backgrounds, preferences, and behaviors.” 
  • Inclusion“the achievement of a work environment in which all individuals are treated fairly and respectfully, have equal access to opportunities and resources, and can contribute fully to the organization’s success.”
  • Diversity Management – “the comprehensive organizational and managerial process for leveraging diversity and achieving inclusion that maximizes the potential of all employees.”

As usual, our chat will take place at 8 PM Eastern/7 PM Central on the second Tuesday of the month (November 12, 2013).  We’ll be discussing the following on the Diversity & Inclusion #SHRMChat:

Q1:  Do your members define Diversity & Inclusion the same way SHRM does?

Q2:  What are some successful Diversity & Inclusion initiatives your chapter or state council has implemented?

Q3:  What are some resources (people, publications, events) that have been of assistance with D&I?

Q4:  Does your chapter or council integrate D & I with other CLAs (i.e. Membership, Workforce Readiness)?  If so, what do you do?

Q5:  How can HR pros/SHRM educate OTHERS (execs, community) about what “Diversity Management” really means?

Please join us! We’re looking forward to your participation on Tuesday November 12th!


Leave a comment

In Case You Missed It; or Even if You Didn’t #LASHRM13 Recap

BRCheck out a variety of blog posts recapping the Louisiana SHRM State Conference on Human Resources.  It’s the next best thing to having been there!

#LASHRM13: Jennifer McClure, on the Future of HR – from MonsterThinking (Monster Worldwide)

#LASHRM13: HR’s Turning Point: Are You Staying in Place or Moving Forward? – from MonsterThinking (Monster Worldwide)

Hey HR Get Over It, Social Media Is Here to Stay! – from Michael Haberman

The “Word” From #LASHRM13: HR’s Culture, Turning Point & Future-Pt. 1from Janine Truitt

The “Word” from #LASHRM13: Sleuths, HR Tech, Communication, Culture, and Social Media-Pt.2 – from Janine Truitt

10 steps to change (and a bonus) #LASHRM13 – from Bill Boorman

And Then This Happened – from Doug Shaw

#LASHRM13 TAKEAWAY: “BURNING THE BRAS” IN #HR – from Crystal Miller

Live from #LASHRM13: A Lawyer’s Advice on Employee Classification – from My Back Office

Live from #LASHRM13: How Social Media Helps HR – from Reputation Capital Media

#LAshrm13: A Social Media Success Story – from The Starr Conspiracy

Social activity from the Louisiana State SHRM Conference 2013 (April 7-9) – Storify by Lizzie Maldonado

********

image courtesy of RedStickNow


2 Comments

NY Comes to Baton Rouge – #lashrm13

new-york-skyline-at-nightToday’s guest post is from Janine Truitt who will be attending the Louisiana SHRM State Conference as a member of the Social Media Team. Janine’s career spans eight years in HR and Recruitment and she is best known for her blog “The Aristocracy of HR” (TAOHR) where she discusses Talent Management triumphs, blunders, and best practices.  You can follow Janine on twitter at @CzarinaofHR.

**********

My pending travels to Baton Rouge for Louisiana SHRM 2013 (LASHRM) is my first trip to Louisiana ever. Even more interesting is that this is my first state SHRM conference (gasp). I had no clue that people from other states attended other state conferences and that there was all of this pomp and circumstance behind it. Who knew? I have never even gone to the SHRM New York State Conference in Saratoga Springs, NY, which is slightly shameful. The only brownie point I get is for knowing that it is held in Saratoga Springs, NY, I mean Buffalo, NY.

Many of my colleagues have asked me, what is the purpose of my involvement with LASHRM? How is it benefiting you? More importantly, why am I going all the way to Baton Rouge to learn more about HR?

Quite simply. I’m intrigued.

It is amazing that there is a social network that exists beyond, well, social media. This network moves from state to state supporting each other’s state SHRM conferences and other HR events. Isn’t this after all what HR aspires to be? It is the epitome of HR moving from silos to working collaboratively and sharing knowledge freely.

How boring we were sitting in our own ordinary conferences commiserating over the same legislature challenges and HR state trends year after year. The same faces. The same voices. The same program. Boring!

Conferences like LASHRM are shifting the paradigm of conference attendance to something more haute and fashionable. It is a paradigm of getting a diverse group of people in a room somewhere across this great U.S. A. to discuss how we keep this HR machine alive and going.

I am a diehard fan of HR. Progressive HR events and initiatives are what get me going. Plus, I’m a New Yorker so if it’s or a reason to party I’m all there. I can’t dismiss the true jewel in all of this which will be my chance to explore a new locale and some great food.

As a member of LASHRM’s esteemed social media team, I will be coaching HR people on how to effectively utilize social media for their HR efforts. However, please know that I will be indulging in some Gumbo, Po Boys, and some warm, powdery beignets when I am not fulfilling my social HR duties.

Okay, I’m a self-confessed foodie, but anyhow, be sure to give this New Yorker a warm welcome when you see me at LASHRM on Social Media Street. I know they say that we New Yorkers aren’t friendly, but I promise I will let the hospitality of the south overcome me. I hope to see you there.


Leave a comment

Keep Calm – Social Media is Just Like Real Life #lashrm13

keep-calm-and-tweet-onToday’s guest post is from Janine Truitt who will be attending the Louisiana SHRM State Conference as a member of the Social Media Team. Janine’s career spans eight years in HR and Recruitment and she is best known for her blog “The Aristocracy of HR” (TAOHR) where she discusses Talent Management triumphs, blunders, and best practices.  You can follow Janine on twitter at @CzarinaofHR.

**********

I’m not sure where these countless “Keep Calm” messages keep emanating from but they are catchy and redundant. The catchy reason is why I decided to use it as a title. The other reason is it drives an important message I want to send to my fellow HR colleagues.

Dear HR Professional:

I want you to know that you can calm down. Social Media is just like real life only digital. There are altruists. There are pessimists. There are the people that won’t be caught dead engaging with you if you’re not part of their clique so guess what they do they contact you behind the scenes rather than engage with you openly for all to see. It’s like the jock that secretly has a love for all things nerdy and meets their nerd friend in an alley to read Moby Dick after school, but shoves and ignores the nerd while in school. I guess it is better to engage in private than not at all, because there are those that won’t give you the time of day ever. Can we say narcissism?

In any event, the same challenges and joys of engaging with people in real life exist in the social media space. People are no different in social media than in real life, they just favor social engagement of the digital kind.

Weird. Maybe.

If you asked someone ten years ago if they could imagine spending more time in front of a computer speaking to other people than their real-life colleagues, they would probably think you needed your head checked. Yes, there was My Space and the beginnings of social media but nothing like what it is today. According to a Huffington Post article authored by Sam Fiorella, “the total time spent engaging on social media sites is up to 37% as of July 2012.” It might seem strange to an HR professional that hasn’t already taken the social plunge that there would be such meaningful and profound opportunities to learn, engage, and collaborate via social media. The unfortunate reality for that individual is that they are increasingly the strange one for not taking advantage of something that is vastly becoming a business imperative. Newsflash: social media is no longer a trendy or a fleeting thing. Social Media is an ecosystem of active job seekers, passive job seekers, entrepreneurs, thought leaders, professionals from every industry just looking to be a signal in the noise etc.

The moral of the story is: HR professionals may not see the need to be on a social network for personal reasons, but they should at least be willing to see the benefit in utilizing it for professional and business purposes. It is not a one size fits all sort of thing. Like most things in life and business, you should utilize the tools that provide the best return on investment. That is-don’t do social media for the sake of doing it. Be intentional about your reasons and what is best suited for your customer base.  At least now, as you rethink your position on social media, you can breathe easier knowing that there are no unicorns or mystical characters in this space. It is the same ol’ same and you know what that entails so keep calm and take the plunge.

If you need support, consider coming to Louisiana SHRM State Conference  from April 7-9 to get some tips from the social media team on how to get started.

*********

image courtesy of Kelly Lux