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    Friday
    Nov302018

    Accepting bids for sneaker sponsorship deals

    (Kinda) big news in NBA and sneaker culture circles this week with the news that the Toronto Raptor star Kawhi Leonard has reached an agreement to become a spokesperson for the New Balance sneaker company, part of the venerable brand's strategy to compete in the basketball sneaker market.

    Per ESPN reports, Leonard will receive north of $5M per year to rep New Balance, a figure that places the deal in the top 15 or so most lucrative NBA player sneaker endorsement deals. Nice bit of change for sure.

    The announcement reminded me of something I'd been thinking about for some time. Namely, why can't 'normal' folks get access to or at least be considered for these kinds of sneaker, (or any kind of footwear or apparel) deals as well?

    For example, take your humble correspondent here. In the last several months I have acquired several pairs of Greats Brand shoes to wear to events, conferences, speaking engagements, etc. These shoes are awesome. Stylish, comfortable, reasonably priced when compared to so-called 'designer' fashion sneakers. They are the bomb. 

    You'd think with all this glowing praise I am heaping on Greats, that I have some kind of sponsorship or endorsement deal with the brand. In fact, I do not. But that is the point, or the question I suppose. Why shouldn't I have an endorsement deal with Greats, (or Brooks Brothers, which is the only kind of suit I wear, or Adidas, of which I have about way too many pairs to count).

    It's not as crazy as it seems. Read about how many marketers are moving away from expensive agreements with social media 'stars' with huge (often fake) followings, and engaging more with what has been termed 'micro-influencers' in their marketing and branding programs. 

    So why can't I, or you, be one of these 'micro-influencers?'

    The answer is you sure can be. Or at least I can be anyway.

    So Greats or Brooks Brothers or Diet Dr. Pepper or Adidas or Miller Lite (don't judge), I am available. If Kawhi is worth $5M per year to New Balance, I figure I've got to be worth what, half that?

    Hit me up...

    Have a great weekend!

    Tuesday
    Nov272018

    PODCAST: #HRHappyHour 349 - Unlocking High Performance with Jason Lauritsen

    HR Happy Hour 349 - Unlocking High Performance with Jason Lauritsen

    Hosts: Steve BoeseTrish McFarlane

    Guest: Jason Lauritsen

    Sponsored by Virgin Pulse - www.virginpulse.com

    Listen HERE

    This week on the HR Happy Hour Show, Steve and Trish were joined by Jason Lauritsen, Employee Engagement expert and author of Unlocking High Performance. On the show, Jason shares many of the insights and lessons learned from his career as a human resources leader, consultant, speaker, and thought leader on employee performance and engagement.

    Jason shared some of the big ideas in Unlocking High Performance such as how work has fundamentally changed from a contractual agreement to more of a relationship-based agreement, how understanding that work is a relationship is critical for employers to understand how to engage employees and create an environment for high performance, and then some of the approaches to create a successful performance management program by focusing on planning, cultivation, and accountability. This is a big book with lots of great ideas and on the show we tried to give listeners a taste of what Unlocking High Performance is all about.

    Listen to the show on the show page HERE, on your favorite podcast app, or by using the widget player below:

    Thanks Jason for coming on the show!

    Remember to subscribe to the HR Happy Hour Show on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher Radio, Google Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts - just search for 'HR Happy Hour'.

    Monday
    Nov262018

    HRE Column: Navigating #HRTech Mergers and Acquisitions

    Shaking off the post-Thanksgiving holiday turkey coma to share with you, gentle reader, the latest installment of the monthly Inside HR Tech Column that runs on Human Resource Executive Online.

    The piece is titled Navigating Mergers and Acquisitions in HR Tech, and is a look at some recent M&A activity in the HR Tech space, and offers some suggestions for HR leaders as to how to best protect their organization's investments in HR tech in this climate.

    Here's an excerpt from the piece on HRE:

    Recently, several significant mergers and acquisitions in the HR-technology market have made news. From Ultimate Software acquiring PeopleDoc to Saba Software acquiring Lumesse (and Halogen Software before that) to the latest and largest announcement that SAP will acquire Qualtrics for $8 billion in cash, there has been no shortage of wow-inducing developments in HR tech.

    But while these announcements certainly produce headlines and get analyzed for their impact on share prices, market share and the software company’s long-term futures, we often tend to overlook one really important constituency that is impacted by these M&A events: the customers of the company that gets acquired.

    While the M&A announcements and subsequent comments from executives of the acquiring company usually talk a little about what the future may hold for the acquired product and its customers, there definitely can be some uncertainty about the future direction of an acquired company and product set. For customers of those products, it is important to understand what an M&A event may mean for them, and to be as prepared as possible for any impacts—including changes that can significantly alter the customer’s HR technology platforms and future direction.

    If your company is a customer/user of an HR-technology solution that has been acquired by another HR-tech provider, here are three things to consider as you react to the news:

    Read the rest at HRE Online...

    You can also subscribe on HRE Online to get my monthly Inside HR Tech column via email here. I promise it will be the most exciting email you will ever receive. 

    Thanks for checking out the column, the blog, the podcasts, the 'Alexa' show, and all the nonsense I'm now in my second decade of churning out. 

    Have a great week!

    Thursday
    Nov222018

    Holidays, ranked

    NOTE: Re-running last year's Thanksgiving post as the rankings have not budged one bit in the past year. Have a great day!

    I looked through the blog archives with the intention of re-running my 'Holidays, ranked' post today, and could not find one!. Turns out I had not gotten around to ranking the holidays, and since today is Thanksgiving in the US, I had to take 10 minutes away from meal prep and bust out my rankings.

    Two notes about the rankings. One, these are just holidays/celebrations that I personally recognize or resonate with me. So we don't have things like 'Bastille Day' or any of the scores of religious celebrations that are important around the world. So don't take offense if I left off a day that is meaningful to you.

    Second, as always these rankings are unscientific, unresearched, highly subjective, and 100% accurate. Use at your own risk.

    To the list of Holidays, ranked:

    10. Columbus Day - Holds a soft spot for me because in grade school Columbus Day was often the same day as my birthday, which i always thought was cool. Like they were closing school for my birthday.

    9. President's Day - Needed something in the #9 slot. That's about it for this one.

    8. Fourth of July - Hot weather, beach, barbecue, beer, patriotism. Pretty good mix.

    7. New Year's Day - Whether you are shrugging off a hangover or just gearing up for the new year ahead, all-around a good day. Bonus points if the Gamecocks are in a bowl game that day.

    6. St. Patrick's Day - Sentimental pick as my son's name is Patrick and he always loved the idea of having his own holiday.

    5. Labor Day - Great way to unofficially end the summer and take a day to rest up for the Q4 push that many of us deal with

    4. Memorial Day - Similarly, great way to start the summer and to take time to remember and thank those that served and sacrificed

    3. Halloween - Probably overrated at this point, but the kids love it. But if you are an adult getting really wound up for Halloween, you may need to think about some of your decision making

    2. Christmas - The big daddy of holidays. Still strong after all these years. Watch 'A Charlie Brown Christmas' again soon.

    1. Thanksgiving - A holiday primarily identified by food? I will take all that you've got.

    Of course you could dispute these rankings, but sadly you'd be wrong.

    Happy Thanksgiving to all who are celebrating today!

    Wednesday
    Nov212018

    PODCAST: #HRHappyHour 348 - Back to Human with Dan Schawbel

    HR Happy Hour 348 - Back to Human with Dan Schawbel

    Host: Steve Boese

    Guest: Dan Schawbel

    Sponsored by Virgin Pulse - www.virginpulse.com

    Listen HERE

    This week on the HR Happy Hour Show, Steve was joined by Dan Schawbel, author of Back to Human: How Great Leaders Create Connection in the Age of Isolation to talk about the impact of technology in the workplace and how to make work more human in the age of constant connection. Despite all the technological advance that have made remote work more accessible, and workplace flexibility more common, many of us are less connected to our colleagues and are feeling more isolated at work. And the importance of connection at work is clear - when employees are better connected and have more friends in the workplace they are more engaged, more productive, and more likely to stay with the organization.  In the book, Dan shares strategies and approaches to help better connect workers to each other, and how to make sure all workers, especially remote workers are included. 

    Additionally, Dan shared some findings from research he did for the book, in partnership with Virgin Pulse that gives HR and business leaders insights into how to make workplaces more connected and to create environments where people can thrive both at work and outside of work.

    You can listen to the show on the show page HERE, on your favorite podcast app, or by using the widget player below:

    This was a really interesting and fun conversation, thanks so much to Dan for joining the HR Happy Hour Show.

    Remember to subscribe to the HR Happy Hour Show on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher Radio, Google Podcasts or your favorite podcast app - just search for 'HR Happy Hour'.