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    We are pretty sure robots will take all the jobs - just not OUR job

    File this item under the 'We all hate Congress, but we keep re-electing our representative every two years' or 'the roads are full of idiot drivers but no one ever admits to being not such a great driver'. 

    Take a look at a couple of charts from a recent Pew Research Center survey of 2,001 American adults that attempted to gauge American's perceptions and opinions about the automation of work and jobs.

    From Pew Research:

    Let's crack open that nut a little, shall we?

    According to the survey, a large majority of Americans, 65%,  of expect that within 50 years robots and computers will “definitely” or “probably” do much of the work and take over the jobs that are currently occupied by us humans. Kind of makes sense, right? Even if you don't follow the 'robot' beat that closely you have probably at least heard some of the doom and gloom predictions about the upcoming robot takeover.

    But just like no one thinks they are a bad driver, when asked about their own jobs and the likelihood they would be replaced by robots and automation, the results were a little different. An even greater share (80%) expect that their own jobs will remain largely unchanged and exist in their current forms 50 years from now.

    So while 11% of the survey respondents are at least somewhat concerned that they might lose their jobs as a result of workforce automation, a larger number are occupied by more immediate and practical concerns – like being replaced by lower-paid human employees, broader economic and industry trends or bad management by their employers.

    What to take from this, especially as we think about our own careers? 

    Probably the big takeaway is to not be naive about the chances that technology and automation may have on our jobs, companies, and industries in the near to medium term. You can't let yourself fall into the trap of thinking 'Well, I can't be automated. What I do is too special, unique, complex....'. It's only the call center agents and factory workers that have to be concerned.' That's a gamble you might regret later on. 

    Someone, actually many someones are going to be automated out of work in the upcoming years. 

    Don't let it surprise you when the robot comes looking for you.


    PODCAST - #HRHappyHour 240 - Oracle HCM World Preview: Big Bets for HR in 2016

    HR Happy Hour 240 - Oracle HCM World Preview: Big Bets for HR

    Hosts: Steve BoeseTrish McFarlane

    Guest: Bertrand Dussert, VP, HCM Transformation & Thought Leadership, Oracle

    Recorded Tuesday, March 22, 2016


    Today on the HR Happy Hour Show, Trish and Steve welcomed back the show Oracle's Bertrand Dussert, one of our Top 5 all-time HR Happy Hour guests, to talk about some of the 'Big Bets' CHROs and HR leaders are making in 2016, as well as previewing the upcoming Oracle HCM World event in Chicago taking place April 5-7 in Chicago.

    Bertrand spends tons of time meeting with senior HR leaders from some of the world's largest organizations and this gives him fantastic insight and perspective on what the major issues are that are facing CHROs today, and how the best performing organizations are tackling these challenges, supported by modern HCM technologies. 

    We talked data and analytics, the desire to reinvent performance and talent management, and how HR leaders are moving to improve the overall employee experience. Additionally, we debated Steve's position on the HR Happy Hour Show's 9-box grid, and whether or not he will ever live up to his potential.

    You can listen to the show on the show page here, or using the widget player below:

    This was a fun, interesting, and thought-provoking show, we hope you enjoy it. 

    You can learn more about Oracle HCM World here. If you will be there, be sure to find the HR Happy Hour Show team, as we will be in attendance as well, doing some interviews on site.

    Reminder, you can find and subscribe to the show on iTunes, or any podcast app for iOS or Android. Just search for 'HR Happy Hour' to subscribe and never miss a show.


    PODCAST - #HRHappyHour 239 - The Human Jukebox Project, #EntryLevelBoss, and Other Stories

    HR Happy Hour 239 - The Human Jukebox Project, #EntryLevelBoss, and Other Stories

    Recorded Friday, March 18, 2016

    Hosts: Steve BoeseTrish McFarlane

    Guest: Alexa Schoen, Founder, EntryLevelBoss

    Listen to the show HERE

    This week on the HR Happy Hour, we welcome Alexa Shoen to the show.  We are thrilled to have Alexa on the show because of her diverse background.  Whether in her role as a freelance Content Strategist & Communications Advisor in Berlin, her newly released album The Human Jukebox Projector her highly successful #EntryLevelBoss movement, Alexa is on the move.  She uses her creativity to inspire others, not only her fellow Millennials, but a whole new generation of people who are looking for inspiration in their careers.  

    We chat with Alexa about the impact of music and how it's possible to collaborate via social using that medium.  We also talk about the ways the #EntryLevelBoss movement is training people to think about work differently.  Please  join hosts Steve Boese, Trish McFarlane and our guest, Alexa Schoen, this week for what will be an interesting and important topic.

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

    This was a fun and interesting show, and I hope you check it out.

    Be sure to listen to and subscribe to the HR Happy Hour Show on iTunes, or via your favorite podcast app. Just search for 'HR Happy Hour' to download and subscribe to the show and you will never miss a new episode.


    The smart leader's approach to dress codes, (or any other policy)

    Happy Spring!

    It's Spring right, at least here in the USA, (and I suppose some other places as well, I was never all that great at geography). But with Spring comes the return (hopefully), of warmer weather and the shift to our 'summer' clothes - both for work and for not work.

    And the first time Gabe from accounting or Marcia in customer service turns up to work wearing some cargo shorts or worse, you or your organization's leaders might be tempted to send one of those beloved 'all employees' emails from HR that run down the ins and outs of the official dress code, as you know, we don't want to really treat folks like adults, at least not at work.

    But before you do send that email listing just what types of concert T-shirts are acceptable and which ones are not, I would encourage you to read this piece from ESPN.com, on how one organizational leader is wrestling with these same workplace policy issues as you are: Joe Maddon, (Chicago Cubs manager), on dress code: 'If you think you look hot, wear it.' 

    Get past the title for a second and read the whole piece. Here is a snippet to prod you along:

    Cubs manager Joe Maddon met with his “lead bulls” on Sunday to go over team rules as 11 players and their boss discussed everything from a dress code to kids in the clubhouse.

    “The biggest topic of discussion was shorts or not on the road,” Maddon said after the meeting.

    Maddon isn’t a stickler for a lot of written rules, instead preferring a common-sense approach. He believes players know the line not to cross. He used last year’s policies -- his first on the team -- as a guideline. They worked out pretty well.

    “You have like a force field, not an actual fence. Guys know if they go past a certain point you might get stung a little bit, but you don’t have to see the fence there,” Maddon explained. “I like that.”

    “Exercise common sense with all this stuff,” he said. “There are so much archaic stuff that baseball stands for. I’m here to manage the team, not make rules. I learned my lesson with that to not go nuts about it.

    Just about everything you need to know about dress codes or most other workplace rules right there. Treat folks like adults, let them know what is really important for the organization to be focusing on, (it isn't the dress code), and involve a larger group of leaders and influencers on the staff as you talk about expectations and whatever policies you have. Not only will they help you define the rules, they will likely help you self-enforce them as well.

    It is actually really simple. Simple enough for even the Cubs to figure out.

    Have a great week! 


    CHART OF THE DAY: The End of Soda (or Pop, if that's how you roll)

    Quick shot for a busy Friday, today's chart is from our pals at Business Insider and shows what BI calls an 'epic' (I'd say it is more 'moderate') decline in per capita soda (or pop) consumption in the USA over the last 18 years.

    Here is the chart, and after that, as always, some FREE commentary from me after the data:

    The headline number is that per capita soft drink consumption has declined from a peak of 53 gallons in 1997 all the way down to 40 gallons in 2015. So just about a 25% decline. Still 41 gallons is a lot of soda, (observed as I down my second Diet Dr. Pepper of the day).

    Why is this important? I am note sure it is, but to me it is at least interesting.

    Could it be, at least by this one measure, the public is finally getting more concerned about the ill effects of the consumption of empty calories from sugary drinks? Or maybe the focus on employee wellness and well-being by lots and lots of organizations is having a positive impact on people's habits with respect to soft drink consumption? Perhaps it's a generational thing. Do 14 year olds like to drink Coke or Mt. Dew?

    Of could it be a simple lack of innovation by the soft drink makers themselves? After all, while we love and praise innovative companies, the second that Coke or Pepsi messes about with the formula or our favorite drink the backlash is immediate and the outrage is enormous.

    Who knows for sure? But as an observer of the world, I find it interesting for sure. Perhaps you do as well.

    Have a great weekend!