Category: Social Technology

When Social Technology Meets HR

A Lesson On Employee Engagement From Thomas Edison’s Mother: Never Let Them Put You Down!

Edison
This guest blog has been provided by Kevin Sheridan, best-selling author and innovator in the field of Employee Engagement

 

One day, as a small child, Thomas Edison came home from school and gave a paper to his mother. He said to her, “Mom, my teacher gave this paper to me and told me only you are to read it. What does it say?”

Her eyes welled with tears as she read the letter out loud to her child: “Your son is a genius. This school is too small for him and doesn’t have good enough teachers to train him. Please teach him yourself.”

Many years after Edison’s mother had died, he became one of the greatest inventors of the century.

One day he was going through a closet and he found the folded letter that his old teacher wrote his Mother that day. He opened it.  The message written on the letter was: “Your son is mentally deficient. We cannot let him attend our school anymore. He is expelled.”

Edison became emotional reading it and then wrote in his diary: “Thomas A. Edison was a mentally deficient child whose mother turned him into the genius of the Century.”

A positive word of encouragement can help change anyone’s destiny.

Although it’s widely known that Edison struggled with learning as a child and only attended public school for a short time, there is much conjecture on the internet as to whether this story about his teacher is true.  No one knows.  Regardless, it illustrates the importance of both owning your own engagement and never letting others ruin your outcomes or future.  If people don’t believe in you or the mission you’re committed to, it shouldn’t affect your own personal drive.  This is true at school, at work, and in your personal life.  Never let people put you down!

 

Kevin Sheridan is an Internationally-recognized Key-Note Speaker, a New York Times Best Selling Author, and one of the most sought-after voices in the world on the topic of employee engagement.   He spent thirty years as a high-level Human Capital Management consultant, helping some of the world’s largest corporations rebuild a culture that fosters productive engagement, earning him several distinctive awards and honors. Kevin’s premier creation, PEER®, has been consistently recognized as a long- overdue, industry-changing innovation in the field of Employee Engagement.  His book, “Building a Magnetic Culture,” made six of the best seller lists including The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today.  He is also the author of The Virtual Manager, which explores how to most effectively manage remote workers. 

Kevin received a Master of Business Administration from the Harvard Business School in 1988, concentrating his degree in Strategy, Human Resources Management, and Organizational Behavior.  He is also a serial entrepreneur, having founded and sold three different companies. Kevin can be reached via email at kevin@kevinsheridanllc.com, on LinkedIn at http://www.linkedin.com/in/kevinsheridan1 and on twitter @kevinsheridan12. His webpage is www.kevinsheridanllc.com.

Creating HR Fireworks

courtesy of bayasaa
courtesy of bayasaa

 

One of the biggest issues that many mid- to large-sized organizations grapple with is how best to leverage the latest HR technology within their existing HRIS environments (and by latest I mean easy-to-use, socially-infused, engaging technology that delivers on efficiency, collaboration and productivity gains). HR leaders often think they must come to terms with having to “rip-and-replace” an existing HRIS.

 

And it’s understandable why they might think this – enterprise technology environments are very complex. Often there are:

  • multiple disparate applications and data sources
  • numerous employee logins/URLs
  • lack of the right data
  • lackluster process integration

With these types of complexities, it is easy to see how companies could resign to the “one size fits all” philosophy, and subsequently overlook opportunities for game-changers such as socially-infused HR solutions.

The good news is there are game-changers that can be adopted into your current HRIS environment, leveraging the best of what you have and enhancing it to achieve “HR fireworks.”

So … What is HR Fireworks?

We believe this occurs when efficiency and the employee experience converge to create an HR system of engagement that truly “pops!”

To find out how you can Create HR Fireworks, be sure to sit in on a presentation by Cary Schuler (Co-Founder & cfactor CEO) and Deb A. Maher (Sr. Director of HRIS and Shared Services at DeVry Inc.) at the IHRIM 2013 HRMS Strategies Conference (#IHRIM2013) in Orlando, on June 4.

Stop by and visit me and my colleagues at Booth 815 to enter to win an iPad mini, grab a bag of popcorn, and take in some HR Fireworks first hand. I look forward to seeing you there!

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