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The Four Stages of Customer Development

 

There is a lot more to attracting new customers to a product or business than just producing catchy ad campaigns or creating search engine optimized websites.  If you want your product to be successful, you have to keep your focus on the customers at every step of the way.  These are the four stages of customer development. more

 

 

Strategy Is Important… But If You Really Want Success, Focus on Execution!

 

Strategy is important in business, but it only gets you part of the way there.  The real key to your success is not just how well you form a strategy, but how well you act on it.  Consider a few examples, from beyond the business world, of how just knowing what to do isn’t enough. more

 

 

Why Do I Need Problem/Solution AND Product/Market Fit?

 

The world of business and marketing can be a complicated one if you do not know what you are aiming towards. For instance, creating an idea is great but means nothing if there is not a reason for it. This is known as a problem/solution fit, essentially meaning that you see a problem and have a solution that is geared towards it. more

 

How to Build the Right Team for Small Businesses

 

Small businesses are becoming the foundation of what human nature is made of. The ultimate American dream, and the dream of people all across the world, comes from being able to come up with an idea, market it, and support your family while doing so. When creating a small business, however, you have to be sure to enlist the help of likeminded individuals that have your business needs at heart and will help you reach the level of success you are looking to achieve. more

 

 

Time for a Career Change? What to Consider Prior and During the Transition

 

When you feel that there is no more movement or satisfaction in your current career, a change may help you to open up new opportunities and life experiences. Such a change does not happen in an instant, though. You cannot leave your current position and find another with wonderful results throughout. There are things to consider prior to and during the transition. more

 

 

 

Should Great Leaders Also Be Great Teachers?

 

Should great leaders also be great teachers? Leaders are bestowed with many vital responsibilities. There are many questions that need to be answered in reference to these responsibilities. Does a strong leader justify their position on leadership qualities alone, or should they use their position to educate and empower those they lead? Most experts would agree that the leaders primary function is to lead but the opportunities to teach should not be ignored or avoided. more

 

 

If I Am Competent, Why Was I Fired?

 

In any field, competency and the ability to do a job is not all it takes to succeed. Assuming that, because you are good at a specified task, you have job security is dangerous. The truth is, even those who are the best at their jobs are at risk of losing them for one reason or another. For anyone fired and wondering why this is so, even though they are competent, there are a few reasons that could explain it. more

 

 

The new wave of employment

 

In 1930, while the world was "suffering a strong attack of economic pessimism," John Maynard Keynes wrote an upbeat article, "Economic Possibilities for our grandchildren". He claimed that there would be a middle ground between revolution and stagnation that would make the grandchildren much wealthier than their grandparents. But the road would not be exempt from challenges. more

 

 

Leadership Lessons We Can Learn From The Military

 

The military is known for being disciplined and fantastic leaders. Military experience also lends leadership skills and good business techniques to those in other industries. Many of the business world’s biggest names have a military background to stand on. Here are just a few of the leadership lessons to be learned from our men and women in the military. more

 

 

Being Popular vs Being Successful

 

Many people equate success with being popular, though that is not the case. Of course, while sometimes the motivation to become popular leads to success, this is extremely rare and typically leads to being mediocre since you stretch yourself too thin and end up doing everything half-way and losing who you truly are. Trying to please everyone will leave you unhappy and you won’t have the same impact you would have if you stopped trying to become famous or popular and instead focused on trying to succeed in your field. more

 

How Is Your Credibility?
 

In today’s world, credibility as a person is important. It can be quite difficult to stick to what you know is right when it becomes difficult to trudge along the right path. Here are some questions you should ask yourself if you are wanting to become a better person on the inside so people can tell from the outside: more

 

 

HR as a Vital Part in Decision Making

 

When there are major financial business discussions going on, especially ones that concern cost reductions and investments; it is so important that HR is not ignored during this time. HR is a vital part of the decision making process and often they are left to fall by the wayside when really they could be so influential. They can help to gain the competitive advantage and this can really make or break some of the decisions that you are looking to make through important financial business discussions. These are some ways in which HR can be incredibly powerful in helping through the decision making process. more

 

 

5 Reasons to Hire Former Military Employees

 

In some ways, the Armed Forces are their own world.  The military has its own customs and its own lingo.  If you have never served in the military, then the unique culture of the military is obvious if you ever watch two “military brats” meet for the first time.  They have lots of experiences just by having grown up with military parents, even if the two military brats’ families were never stationed in the same place, or even if their parents were in different branches of the Armed Forces. more

 

 

Plant Closing and the vital role of Human Resources

 

Management training seldom includes plant closing. This process is usually learned on the job,  and the involvement and role of human resources (HR) is mostly overlooked. The inclusion of HR in plant closing is integral and has a substantial effect on the positive or negative outcome. The earlier HR is brought into the planning of the closing process the more likely there will be a positive outcome for employees and bottom-line for the company. more

 

 

The Total Financial Impact of Employee Absences

 

Investigating the underlying causes of absences can be complex, but understanding it can also influence strategies for improving productivity.

 

Organizations should consider not only the direct costs in payroll when calculating the costs of employee absences, but also the impact of indirect costs such as those associated with productivity  loss. Your company may not be able to track these costs, or find it very difficult to do so, but given the impact to the bottom line of the business, it is pertinent that organizations track all costs associated with employee absences. more

 

 

Outplacement or Coaching?

 

When a high level professional within a company finds themselves displaced what should they do? The world today may not be the one they began this position in. When you are in the position of making $250K+ you must be able to assess your skills and look as good as possible to potential new employers.

 

You will most likely be in a state of disarray yourself and need all the help you can find. There are a few really good firms that deal in executive outplacement and coaching for persons such as you. It would behoove you to talk to one of them to see if you think they could be of service. more

 

 

Performance Appraisal

 

A performance appraisal provides a great opportunity for both you and the person receiving the feedback. Before and during a review, both the interviewer and the employee will be discomforted if the news is negative. But a poor review may be what is needed to inspire someone to reevaluate their skills and career abilities if the interview is done correctly. It can become the spark to motivate the employee to resolve issues and even help them advance their career. But the question is, do you want to know why and how to make it a positive outcome? more

 

 

Human Resource Contribution to Crisis Management

 

Crisis can hit anytime, and to identify and prevent them can be the biggest challenge faced by many organizations. Managing the crisis events in an effective manner will help the businesses in moving ahead. Most of the times, the focus is mainly on the systems, infrastructure, operations and public relations. What about HR? more

 

 

Should Every HR Manager be a Project Manager?

 

The responsibilities of an HR Manager and Project Manager are different. However, an HR Manager might want to familiarize him or herself with the work of a Project Manager. While becoming a Project Manager will have its benefits, there is no need to go that far. It is important to at least understand the work and play an active role in it. This is because a Project Manager’s responsibilities go well with those of an HR Manager. Managing employees and employee relations is all part of being a Project Manager. While there is also time and effort put into the project itself, the people behind it will take up a large portion of the attention. An HR Manager can benefit greatly from this. more

 

 

Fairness in Compensation

 

In organizations, employees may feel that they do not receive enough compensation for the work that they do. This is a common grievance amongst employees when they have worked there for a long time, have years of experience, are highly skilled, or feel that they put in more effort than it is worth. The concern here is whether the compensation is actually fair or if the employees have a point. The only way to know this is to look at it from an outsider’s perspective and to look at all of the information. For the employees, the only perspective they have is their own. This means that, according to their own feelings and thoughts, they deserve higher pay. Uncovering the truth and speaking with the employees may help to find a solution to this problem. more

 

 

Change Management and HR

 

Change in a business is inevitable. At some point, something will change that will affect other aspects of the business. This could be a small change that rarely plays a part in everyday work or it could be a major change that has immediate effects. Regardless, it is always important that HR puts time into change management. Change management considers all aspects of change, moves forward carefully and thoughtfully, and makes sure that everything works as intended and expected. HR has to follow various steps to ensure that this goes over well. If HR fails to do this, the consequences could lead to loss and could affect the business’s competitive edge. Change management is a necessary part of keeping everyone on top of their game in the business. more

 

 

Why Each Small Business Should have a Good HR Support

 

When you think of a small business you may not immediately think about human resources or HR support and how having or not having it can affect that small business.  Many larger companies and business rely on HR to help them with a variety of functions and small businesses can benefit from good HR support just as much as those larger companies. more

 

 

Cost of Bad Hiring

 

If you have applied for a job then you have probably wondered why it takes them so long to hire someone for the position.  What you may not realize is that the reason many companies take their time when it comes to hiring is because a bad hiring choice can cost the company in more than one way.

Businesses look at a variety of factors when they are going through the hiring processes.  They are not only considering the applicants’ skills and qualifications but they are also looking at how well they work with others and what type of attitude they have.  These are all things that they take into consideration when going through the hiring process.  more

 

 

How Coaching Can Be Effective for an Executive (Is Coaching for Me?)

 

Becoming a better executive is about more than experience and education. While your investment in your work and schooling are important, they are not the only things to keep in mind. You also have to consider hiring a coach when you feel that some areas could benefit from expert guidance. Coaches will help you on all levels. They give you business and personal support that can make a huge difference in your life. Most executives that invest in coaching see a tremendous change in their lives. They see this in their professional performance as well as their personal lives, making coaching an invaluable tool. It allows executives to achieve greatness in ways they could not before. This is why so many corporations spend thousands of dollars an hour just to gain from their expertise. It is highly beneficial and it can help executives to become more. more

 

 

Why HR Needs to Have Finance Support

 

Most people see a fundamental difference between Human Resources and Finance; after all they represent different components of business. People (HR) vs. Money (Finance). This assumption couldn’t be more wrong. While Finance views HR as an unnecessary cost, HR thinks finance is out to squeeze every penny they can find. Bottom line is both departments function as gears powering a larger machine. Individually each department provides services to the company, many of which overlap. When HR and finance function cooperatively the company moves into a new era of efficiency, production, customer satisfaction and most important, profit. more

 

 

HR and Compliance

 

Businesses are complicated. They have numerous moving parts to them to make the machine as a whole run properly. In most businesses, though, these moving parts function independently. Each part of the business works within its own area, not often communicating with other parts of the business. This is common with HR and compliance. Too often, you will find these areas relying solely on themselves. On top of their preferred independence, they also lack an understanding of the other part. If you want your business to run like the well-oiled machine it should be, however, you want them to communicate and remain open with one another. The power that HR and compliance can have when working together is immense. This will allow the business to tackle one of the biggest risk factors for compliance: Humans. more

 

 

Coaching or Mentoring – Which Is Best for Me?

 

When you are a student, it is easy to go to them for guidance.  In your personal life, you probably have older family members that you regard as role models.  When it comes to work, the rules become less clear cut about seeking guidance and following people’s example.  Coaching and Mentoring are two different models that can help you find your way in a new career path.  In this article, we will examine some of the differences between these two systems. more

 

 

 

HR Needs to be Trusted – What to do when it is not?

 

HR is an important part of any business. It is their job to ensure that everything runs smoothly and that there are no issues with people. The problem is that, too often, HR does not maintain the trust that it needs. Some people outright despise HR, making it out as the enemy of the workplace. This is true for all people in a business, and it becomes more evident in changing situations, such as M&As and financial turmoils. more

 

 

OUTSOURCING - HR and Procurement Working Together

 

The human resources department is the first place that new employees of a company go when they find out that they get hired.  It is where they go when they have questions about payroll or sick days.  After all the stress of planning a wedding, a newly married employee can finally bring his or her marriage certificate to human resources and announce the marriage so that the employee’s spouse can be added to the employee’s health insurance plan. more