lion idea

Nobody Gets a Great Idea When They’re Being Chased by a Lion

John Hollon Culture, John Hollon

I subscribe to the old adage that there’s nothing new under the sun. But once in awhile even I get gobsmacked (as the British like to say) by a new insight that’s so thoughtful and incisive that it makes up for all the crap that normally passes for management wisdom these days. The insight that grabbed me comes from Mark Nathan, CEO of Zipari, a …

online job ads

It Takes a Lot of Luck For Anyone to Really Win With an Online Job Ad

John Hollon job postings, John Hollon

Here’s a confession: I hate online job ads, because they’re a crappy way to find the best candidates. On the one hand, my recruiter side loves the fact that a smart, well-focused Internet job post can pull in a boatload of candidates for a position. It’s a great way to get a bunch of resumes in short order. But on the other hand, …

uber ceo travis kalanick

A Lesson From Uber: You Are What Your Culture Says You Are – Like It or Not

John Hollon Culture, John Hollon

Why do so many people think that companies only focus on building strong, positive workplace cultures? The fact is, organizations are ALWAYS building their culture — whether they mean to or not. You know what I’m talking about: Those kinds of businesses where workers spend more time yakking about all the bad management and terrible decision making going on around them than …


Here’s Why Life — and HR — Is So Very Different in the Aloha State

John Hollon Employee Relations, HR, John Hollon

HONOLULU — It’s been 20 years since I’ve been in Hawaii, but the moment I arrived back in Honolulu last week, it felt like I had never left. My connection with the Aloha State goes back a long way. Not only did my wife and I honeymoon here, but we lived on Oahu for three years in the mid-90s when I …

A Sad Reminder That People Don’t Leave Their Companies, They Leave Their Managers

John Hollon John Hollon, Retention

Sometimes, you just need to be reminded of some basic principles of the workplace. Here’s one to keep in mind as your organization struggles with recruiting and retention: Employees don’t leave their company, they leave their managers. Victor Lipman wrote a book about this last year — The Type B Manager: Leading Successfully in a Type A World — and in it (and …


Office Holiday Parties? They’re OK, But I’m a Big Fan of the Office Holiday Lunch

John Hollon Employee Engagement, Holidays, John Hollon

We’re deep into the holiday season, and nothing gives me pause as much as my fellow FOTer Laurie Ruettimann’s recent post on the perils of the office holiday party. It’s a personal, no-holds-barred view of such annual get-togethers, and I pretty much agree with her sober words of warning. Yes, it’s always dangerous when you mix alcohol, co-workers, and a gathering …

Want to Foster a Risk-Taking Culture? If So, You Better Be Willing to Deal With a $2 Million Mistake

John Hollon Culture, John Hollon, Risks, Uncategorized

You’ve heard managers say it over and over — “we want our employees to feel they can take risks!” — yet you wonder how many companies really, truly believe it. My experience is that despite the rhetoric that they do, most don’t. Over many years working for a variety of organizations, I’ve found that people rarely get patted on the back for …

Election Day as a Paid Holiday? This Is a Workplace Benefit We Need a Lot More Of

John Hollon Audacious Ideas, Employee Engagement, John Hollon, Policies, Talent Strategy, Workplace Flexibilty

The older I get, the more I find that I treasure one long-standing workplace benefit. Yes, let’s hear it for the three day holiday weekend. I’m thrilled anytime I can add a third day to a weekend, because as I learned a long-time ago when I worked a four-day week (yes, I worked four 10 hour days way back in …

Cultural Meltdown: When Values Don’t Match Workers’ Day-to-Day Reality

John Hollon Always Be Closing, Bad HR, Change Management, Culture, Current Affairs, employee experience, John Hollon, Performance

“If there is one job that I as CEO must do for our team members, customers, communities, and shareholders, it is to be the keeper of our company’s culture. It is the role of all team members to understand our culture, internalize it, live it, teach it, and reinforce it.” — CEO John Stumpf, from Wells Fargo‘s statement of values If …

It’s High Time We Give Up the Ghost on Employee Engagement

John Hollon Bad HR, Employee Communications, Employee Engagement, employee experience, Engagement and Satisfaction, John Hollon

Aren’t we all sick and tired of employee engagement? I know I am. I’ve been writing about it for years (here’s one from July 2010), and the story never changes. A great many consultants and companies have gotten involved in helping organizations get more engaged employees, and a great deal of time and money has been spent. It should have really helped, …