BOSS Posts

L.I.F.E. – Living In Faith Everyday

An Unknown author put it like this, “Do not judge my story, based on the chapter you walked in.”

We all put enough pressure on ourselves to live out this idea of who/what we are supposed to be. I would even venture to say we at times unfairly adopt the parameters set by people who have come and gone. This type of self-sabotage is way too tiring. Which leads to us asking questions like:

“Why” has my life gone this way?


“Why” me?

Or better yet

“Why” do I have to endure such hardship and trying times?

That opening quote can be applied to ourselves as well. When we do ourselves the disservice of living another’s distorted reality we invariably internalize this madness, we create paradigms that were not meant for us to live out. You see, with each new day we get to write a totally different outcome based on a decision to live L.I.F.E. versus letting it merely happen. Choosing to Live In Faith Everyday is a choice that must be made by each of us.

We hear it all the time change your mindset change your life. This would insinuate that we should not be caught by surprise when things do not happen as we envisioned. Disappointment only stings when not properly put into perspective.

A little over a year ago the man that I knew as Superman had a massive heart attack and stroke. This man, my father who now is fighting his way back to reclaim his own voice had up to this point lived a very vocal life through service. This service speaks and fuels me with intentionality on moving forward to constantly find my voice with every waken moment. Without witnessing the lived lessons I would probably not be able to see the footsteps in the sand towards purpose.

To put this thing called L.I.F.E into perspective for you. A little over a year ago I was not in my career field of choice, but I did have a paying job that more than took care of me and my family. A little over nine months ago I was laid off, but I was interviewing with three different companies simultaneously with 2/3 giving me job offers for positions in a purpose-filled career field.

These lessons in the very near future make me smile with an expectation of what’s next. I want you after reading this to go look at your resume. I want you to reflect on what it took to be where you are today. You will be amazed by your own resilience, grit, and determination. We are uniquely and wonderfully made. I want to leave you with some tips to own your strength and build an even brighter tomorrow.

Four fundamental things you must do to live well:

  1. Live with the intentions to leave a legacy that leaves the world a better place than you found it.
  2. In everything find the positive that positions you to be purposeful.
  3. Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God…Enough said!
  4. Everyday give thanks for the opportunity to be at peace with the fact that you did your best.

“We all die. The goal isn’t to live forever, it is to create something that will.” ~ Chuck Palahniuk ~

What will you do with the time you have?

Who will know you were here?

Will you make a decision to make today matter? What about Tomorrow?

Let’s partner for success.

Let’s live a L.I.F.E of intentionality!

Let me know what you think of the article

Share your thoughts

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Hey YOU! Never give up!

Have you ever felt as if you were running a solid professional race, and then boom!

Your forward momentum is suddenly brought to a halt. Finding yourself left standing with nothing to show for your effort except questions, confused, maybe even dazed.  

Well, about 3 years ago that is where I was.  

Newly transitioned U.S. Army Officer with so much (I thought) to give to my future employer or my next business venture.  But, there I was alone (figuratively)! Hundreds of resumes submitted no phone calls, no prospects, no suitors, no nothing, but filled with so much anxiety, frustration, and at times anger.

What was I trying/doing you ask?  Everything in the guidebook” on building a personal brand, do’s & don’ts of networking, do’s & don’ts of filling out applications.  I was going to networking events, I was making my own business cards, I was moving and shaking, but still, no leads.  

 It was at an HR networking event where I was introduced to serial networkers we all know them.  To be honest I generally tried to avoid these people because I thought it was shallow to be popping in and out of events just to shake a couple dirty hands (joking…am I :o).  This particular event I finally got over myself and listened to the content of the conversations of this guru and everything made perfect sense…just wait I’ll tell you what they said in a minute.

 What I began to notice was this networking guru mingled but did not give everyone a card.  I in previous events was taking the airmail approach just throw a bunch out there and someone will pick it up and be my saving grace.  Like, “You get a card, you get a card, and you too!” However, this person I was observing was being selective. Only handing cards to professionals that seemed to have similar aligned talent and professional prowess intriguing to the guru.  

 So, back to what she said, “Networking is about the relationship, it is not just about handing your card, or being a card collector.” Then it hit me, the things I had done so well in the Army I needed to now get back to the basics and do as a new civilian.  I need to build a foundation of trusted folks in the industries I desired to be in.

 So, I got to relationship building.  Ureka! You mean to tell me focused intentional purpose filled conversations are a thing? Absolutely, its all about alignment! How do you get here? 

Be intentional and consistent with your mission:

  1. Hone your message to highlight your strengths that are foundationally grounded to meet a potential need.
  2. Develop a personal mission statement for where you want to go and be
    1. “I Lawrence Henderson of sound mind and body do…wait…I Lawrence Henderson desire to be a Leadership & Organizational Development professional no later than January 2016 at an organization that understands me…wait…with an organization where my talent and skills can assist the company goals to add value to all stakeholders and customers by connecting the dots for individuals and teams to maximize return on investment.”  Nailed it!

 Get out of your own head.  You are enough! You have the what it takes!  Get to intentional relationship building.  If you are missing something. 

Ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Who I need to connect with?
  2. Do I need any specialized professional training?
  3. Who do I know today that I can begin assisting to help my development? (for FREE, paid, or intern)

 This process is a marathon, not a sprint.  Never give up! It will happen if you remain consistent and vigilant.  People naturally want to help, but they cannot support you correctly if you have not defined your need before asking. 

 If you need assistance figuring that out, get a coach.  Reach out to me or a solid recommended person to map out things. 

 Look for intentional programs events or relationship building opportunities.  There is an awesome opportunity on March 17th Called the Community Leaders Network: Connecting the Dots see information below.

 Call to action:  Engage and Engage some more.  I cannot stress how important it is to put yourself out there.  I know its hard, I know its frustrating, I know its time consuming, but what do you have to lose.

 The quote goes “Start by doing what’s necessary; then do what’s possible; suddenly you are doing the impossible.” (I’m possible) ~ Francis of Assisi

 Leave a comment, your thoughts, and let’s begin to truly support our fellow man.

 Let’s partner for our collective success!

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People Strategy Foundations

Louis Boone & David Kurtz suggest a first-class workforce can be the foundation of a firm’s competitive differentiation, providing significant advantages over competing for business. In a business environment, it is up to the HR Business partner to emphasize how expertise in the primary functional areas can positively affect trends throughout an organization. A comprehensive approach to recruiting, developing, and transitioning talent can lead to an increased competitive advantage. It is paramount that HR professionals develop as strategic business partners to leverage the laws and regulations that equal employment governs, yet managing corporate priorities to maintain its dexterity retaining top human capital.

Let’s face it with the always in your face changing the culture from generation to generation can at times seem polarizing. However, the same things that divide can also be what bridges the gap like the positive use of technology and leverages trends analysis. An HR manager that possesses the business acumen and keeps the strategic vision in mind is critical, thus requiring a diverse team that remains flexible in all aspects of the operation. Once complete it will be concluded that keen Human Resources Management is essential to the survival of a company because the functions will evolve as the enterprise’s needs shift.

What are these key functional areas of Human Resources Management?
Ask any human resources professional what the key functional areas of Human Resources Management are, and you will receive 100 different answers. This variance is due to organizational type, size, budget constraints, and strategic priorities. For generalization’s sake here are a couple of HR functional areas:
– Talent Acquisition (Job Analysis / Design of Work)
– Employee Relations
– Training and Development
– Compensation / Benefits
– Human Resources Information Systems
– Labor Relations

For the sake of argument, I have some thoughts on what the top three areas look like:
1 & 2 are home inside of the Talent Acquisition process. Job Analysis and Design of work. 3 is Training & Development.

#1 – Proper Job Analysis consists of the plan to decide what jobs have vacancies and to accurately define performance measures. How can careful analysis help?
– Saves time and money up front in the process
– Let’s an organization decide if the position needs to be filled at all
– Mitigates the risk of the wrong candidate being hired
Attention to detail paid in this area should be a non-negotiable task.

#2 – Design of work can put the proper perspective on vacancies need to be filled.
Integral to an appropriate Job Description:
– The right pairing with an accurate job analysis of vacancies
– Defined job requirements
– Key performance specifics from hiring manager
– No ambiguity of preferences or need for selection
One of the hazards of attempting to over simplify candidate selection is the over dependence on technology. Using a talent acquisition tracking system should be a tool and not used generalize job definitions. Do not skimp when it comes to making updates to systems and processes as necessary.

#3 – Training & Development is the art of adding value to an organization through providing development opportunities that are meant to enhance the job performance of individuals and groups in organizational settings. My time in the U.S. Army has made me very adept in the area of articulating tactics, techniques, and procedures that were paramount to the success of the organization. It is imperative that the company has a learning program in place that can coach, teach, and mentor the workforce into the future.
Strategic training and development done right:
– Can assist the organization with retention
– Enhance associates feeling competent & confident
– Aids organizational strategic initiatives training
– Assist in transitions of new hires, retirements, or right sizing
– Provides career growth opportunities for next level
Focused efforts on education and development also advance well to the recruitment and talent acquisition process. The process is an integral part of the company’s overall growth and sustainment in its respective industry.

Let me know what you think.

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Identifying Org Learning Issues!

Organizational Learning like most Human Resource topics tends to have a shelf life.  This shelf life has its peaks and valleys depending on which tenant of the Organizational vision is being missed or appears to be waning.  When it comes to Organizational learning it is oftentimes treated like contract support and is the first thing to go when it is time for budget cuts.  Because of this, the idea that employees’ individual development is important becomes nothing more than a t-shirt slogan.  Do not take my word for it I’ll let Richard Snell say it in a more believable voice “Being a learning organization is a long-term guiding aspiration that can be glimpsed, but is not likely to be achieved in the near future”.  Taking care of the people asset in an organization mitigates the risk of issues down the road.  A systemic issue has materialized across organizations in the areas of in knowledge sharing, training programs, team dynamics, work experiences, procedural application, and process advancement or development.  The initial and most immediate action must be to research the root of the problem and develop a change management plan to help with implementation.

In his book Demystifying Organizational Learning, Raanan Lipshitz  states “Divergence begets divergence, giving rise to a secondary stream of organizational learning literature offering typologies and conceptual frameworks for making sense of the theoretical diversity”.  Deep diving into these mystifications brings of several topics of reference:

  • Mystification of multiple parochial disciplines
  • Treating Organizations like People
  • Visionaries and the Skeptics

The mystification of multiple parochial disciplines places a strain on the manager to employee relationship as it pertains to learning.  Principal learning subjects and models are why an organization cannot simultaneously sustain consistent and evolving learning environments.  The scheme of what needs to happen is so grand that it becomes unreasonable when attempting to give shared knowledge parameters or quantitative measurable outcomes.  The current organizational learning environment, for the most part, is outsourced to training consultants and established adult learning organizations.  

The second mystification is one that has eluded many organizations.  This mystification is Treating Organizations like People.  Lipshitz suggests, “the transition from individual to organizational learning remains unspecified.”  The thought that anthropomorphism is actually a thought process of an organization leads us to understand that there is disconnect.  I am reminded of an HR department meeting I attended in a previous organization where a key HR stakeholder discussed the topic of learning from a macro level as this unattainable object.  The approach has been treated conceptually versus personally.  Not specifying what learning looks like from a development standpoint gives way to being disconnected from the process altogether. Not approaching learning as an intentional part of the business it places little to no emphasis on it ever being a priority in employee development, which adds risks pertaining to retention of top talent.  Employees regardless of generation want to know that a financial investment is being made into their future.  Helping employees see that they are more than clock punchers and that their personal development is connected to the company’s overall strategy is a powerful tool that must be leveraged.

Lastly, the third mystification is between the Visionaries and the Skeptics.  The ideas that persist on the executive level versus the employee level are miles apart.  The visionaries hold positions placing emphasis on global ramifications profusely trying to figure out how to leverage internal vs external learning support.  While the skeptics are naturally at all levels, trying to figure out why a comprehensive approach to learning should be a shared experience in the first place.  Across most companies two schools of thought are battling for supremacy.  One thought is that learning is and should be an individually driven activity and that employees know what they want and must take the proverbial bull by the horns.  The other is that learning should be an intentional activity that is generated with the organization’s vision in mind deploying and offering courses that enforce team unity.  These two notions highlight the divide between a fundamental hierarchal need to self-actualize. Not to go extremely academic on you, but William Huitt recognized that “Each individual’s needs must be satisfied at the lower levels before they progress to higher, to more complex levels.”  Self-actualization places a need to develop a learning environment that develops from the bottom up.  A knowledge gap exists between management and the employee causing tension that is shifting needs.   I believe that the organization that bridges this gap in understanding and fundamental practice will win the race for the retention of top talent.  Those same organizations will also figure out that placing a premium on growing from within is actually cost saving to the bottom line.

What say you?

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Success or Failure – NEVER Mediocrity!

As we all aspire to live out our dreams do we sometimes let the applause of our current environment cause us to settle for less than OUR best?

In an effort to act on being a lifelong learner do you always look for understanding what is good, better, or best for each moment or do you generalize?

Have you ever found yourself upset with someone who called out your mediocrity?

These questions are some of what we as professionals should have to answer to.  To be always present and in a perpetual state of learning so that we are not caught short or empty handed.  Do not let the applause fool you, it could be as they say in the south a “bless your heart” moment.

Let’s discuss!

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