In episode 30 of The HR Famous Podcast, long-time HR leaders (and friends) Tim Sackett, Kris Dunn and Jessica Lee link up to discuss Senator Tom Carper’s senate hearing mishap with Zoom and Johnny Taylor’s time at SHRM, asking and discussing the question “is Johnny Taylor for good for SHRM and HR?” The gang discusses Johnny Taylor’s leadership of the mega HR association SHRM based on this recent article at Business Insider.
1:30 – Do you like “what up?” or “how are you?” better? HR Famous prefers what up as a greeting!
2:30 – Do you have any monster.com swag from an HR conference? Tim still has it on his desk! KD isn’t a swag guy and wants to avoid the lines at all costs.
5:00 – First topic of the day: tech mishaps in US Senate hearings! Senator from Delaware Tom Carper didn’t realize he wasn’t muted and was caught using some profanity in this video. KD wrote about this occurrence on his blog and called him the worst boss ever.
9:15 – Tim calls this the most embarrassing leadership moment that a leader can have around their staff. What is your most embarrassing moment as a leader?
11:30 – KD thinks the abrupt nature of Senator Carper’s three f-bombs to a staffer gives the signal that he’s the worst boss ever. He thinks the nature of the interaction gives off bad boss vibes.
14:00 – Second topic of the day: is Johnny Taylor good for HR?Business Insider discussed the reign of the CEO of SHRM in their new article and noted the turnaround under his leadership and allegations of a cutthroat culture he has created for SHRM employees.
17:00 – Although some may call Tim a Johnny Taylor fanboy, he praises him for turning a company around and helping SHRM start to turn a profit again. Tim says that the out of touch SHRM of the past is being transformed under Johnny and the new culture he’s creating is trying to update the company.
19:20 – JLee thinks that it’s important to try and bifurcate some of Taylor’s accomplishments from some issues that have arisen at SHRM. She says that it’s hard to deny some of his results even though there have been issues with SHRM’s work culture and their handling of certain situations with their employees.
23:00 – KD sets the table for a balanced discussion on Taylor at SHRM, doing a balanced scorecard he calls “Johnny’s W’s and Johnny’s L’s (wins and losses), noting that any leader in any organization is going to have some wins and losses – that’s just life.
23:30 – Johnny’s wins: financial turnaround, diverse leader of an organization, speaking out about recidivism, DEI programming among others. Jlee comments on the fact that Johnny’s involvement and visibility has limited the need for paid media. Tim comments on his charisma and how his dynamic presence may positively affect membership.
27:40 – Johnny’s losses: perceived alignment with the Trump administration creates polarization and vocal critics, SHRM’s slow response to the Black Lives Matter movement and the killing of George Floyd, and a perceived relationship with the Koch brothers on issues of recidivism.
31:00 – Tim thinks the messaging about police brutality and the BLM movement is something that SHRM could’ve clarified in order to create a more clear message. Jlee talks about perception vs reality.
33:56- The crew gives their final answer to the question of the segment. Is Johnny Taylor good for HR? What do you think?
Kris Dunn is a Partner and CHRO at Kinetix, a national RPO firm for growth companies headquartered in Atlanta. He’s also the founder Fistful of Talent (founded in 2008) and The HR Capitalist (2007) – and has written over 70 feature columns at Workforce Management magazine. Prior to his investment at Kinetix, Kris served in HR leadership roles at DAXKO, Charter and Cingular. In his spare time, KD hits the road as a speaker and gives the world what it needs – pop culture references linked to Human Capital street smarts.