Posts Tagged ‘human resources’

Social Media for Recruiting: Are Women Business Owners at a Disadvantage?

September 7, 2012

No matter the size of your business, recruiting the best employees is a challenge. With the increased usage of social media as a recruitment tool, women business owners may be at a bit of a disadvantage.

According to a 2011 study by the Pew Research Center, women use social media more than men. This would seem to give women business owners a bit of a leg up when it comes to using social media to recruit candidates, but that may not be the case.

The Jobvite Social Recruiting Survey 2012 showed that 93% of business owners who use social media for recruiting used the site LinkedIn. LinkedIn is the only social media site that is used by more men than women. In fact, the Pew Research study showed there were nearly twice as many men using LinkedIn as women.

Because business owners who use social media for recruiting report a 43% increase in the quality of candidates, women business owners may be missing the boat on some of the best available talent.  Of course, you can also use Facebook and Twitter for recruiting, and women use these sites much more than men.

Now is the time for women business owners to consider using social media as a recruiting tool.

Ways to Use Social Media for Recruiting

Identify Candidates

Just as business owners are learning to use social media to recruit candidates, job seekers are using their LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook pages to seek work. Some of the best candidates aren’t actively looking for a job, but you can still reach out to them. By identifying these passive candidates, you will expand your pool and increase your chance of finding the best talent.

Post Open Jobs

Posting open jobs on social media sites is another way to use social media as a recruitment tool. Some of your followers will share the job posting with their own network, and greatly increase the number of potential candidates.

Social media isn’t only effective for recruiting full-time employees. It is possible to effectively recruit a seasonal or part time employee using social media as well.  You will reach college students, stay-at-home moms and other groups who are looking for supplemental income.

 Current Employees

Ask your current employees to aid in your recruitment efforts. One way that they can do this is by posting about their job and spreading the word to their social network about any openings. Having a current employee vouch that your business is a great place to work can further increase the interest from qualified candidates.

Consider offering your employers an incentive should their networking result in a new hire.

Screen Candidates

Another way that you can use social media in the recruitment process is to screen candidates once they have been identified. A quick peek at their Facebook profile may be enough to knock some candidates out of the running.

Keep in mind that when you look at the profiles of potential candidates, there is a good chance that you will see protected class information – that is information that cannot legally be used to eliminate candidates. This includes race, gender etc.. Even if you do not use this information to make a decision there is a chance that someone will say that you did.

A Helping Hand

Social Media – Just a Tool

Social media is just one tool. It does not take the place of other methods of recruitment and it certainly does not eliminate the need for the proper screening of candidates. To be sure that you are following all applicable employment laws during the recruitment process, it is a good idea to have a helping hand.

Working with a human resources consultant can ensure that you don’t put yourself in a position to come under scrutiny. A qualified HR consultant can make the recruitment process easier and give you a better chance at retaining quality employees.

Other Tips

Get on LinkedIn

If you do not use LinkedIn, you need to start. While the other social networking sites can aid in your recruitment efforts, LinkedIn is the only one that is specifically for business use.

Need a Following

For any type of social media initiatives to be as effective, you need to continue to develop a following. The more followers, the more access you’ll have to qualified candidates.

Continually work on developing your social media presence.

Don’t Believe Everything You Read

It is no secret that many candidates embellish their resumes. The same is true for what you read on their social media profiles. Don’t believe everything that you read. Instead, you will need to verify important information.

Women in business who are not using social media as a recruitment aid may be missing out on some of the best talent. The next time you have a job opening to fill, or if you just want to develop a list of potential talent for future positions, social media is a great place to start.

Pat Eardley is a Human Resources Advisor with more than 16 years’ experience in human resources management as a recruiter, trainer, and executive. Pat has a diverse background, having industry experience in retail, telecommunications, hospitality and manufacturing. As an Advisor she supports small-business owners in managing growth, compliance, work performance and employee relations, allowing Small Business owners to focus on creating a successful business environment for them and their employees. She is a member of the Society for Human Resources Management, a SCORE Mentor and Center for Women Job Coach. Pat volunteers with local shelters and nonprofit organizations and assists with resume writing, interviewing skills, professional appearance and job placement. You can find out more about Pat and the services she offers at www.pateardley.com.

* First appeared in the Business Review section of The Post and Courier on Monday, July 31, 2012.

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C4W Member Profile: Cindy Cartmell

June 20, 2012

What is your profession? While my title is Vice President of Human Resources & Communications at MWV, my profession is truly people.  I have a wonderful job that allows me to focus on who people really are, what motivates them, and where they can be best positioned to do amazing things.

What do you enjoy doing outside of your career? My personal life is focused on my family and friends.  I have two children, ages 9 and 12, who keep me running around town with all of their activities.  The best part of the day is the conversations we have around the dinner table.  I try to hold that time sacred during the week as it is where I learn the most about what is going on in their worlds.

How long have you been a member of the Center for Women? I’ve been a member of C4W for 5 years.

What inspired you to become a member?   I had lived in Charleston for about 4 years and realized I hadn’t done a great job of networking professionally.  One of my co-workers set up a meet and greet with C4W and after seeing the results of their actions, I was hooked.

What kind of impact has the Center for Women had on you? At MWV we continue to drive strong engagement with the women in our organization.  We created a Women’s Network several years ago, and C4W is one of the local organizations we encourage our employees to get connected with.  Regardless of experience (or title for that matter) we all have something substantial to share with others.  I like that C4W is the type of organization that provides a ‘hand up’ versus a ‘hand out,’ meaning they build skills that can be applied in so many areas of our lives.

How has living day-to-day as a woman affected you?  For the past 10 years I’ve been the only female member of our senior leadership team.  It’s been rewarding, challenging and very educational working with the dynamic group of men on my team.  We’ve learned a lot from each other.  It took me a while to take the position seriously, meaning to understand the breadth of my responsibility to ensure women in our organization get the right level of recognition, development opportunities, and quite frankly time in front of senior leaders.  I’ve learned that women network differently than men.  We have a smaller number of relationships that are deep.  Men have more relationships but often times lack the depth.  They are therefore better networked given they know more people.  I encourage women in our organization to build more networks; to sit at the table in meetings and by all means have a voice.  I’ve challenged women to stretch and take risks.  As a result I’ve had the honor of seeing them do amazing things, both personally and professionally.

What kind of message would you like to send out to women who are trying to succeed in today’s economy?  The important thing to remember is this:  The only thing that gets in your way is yourself.  So many of us can make an exhaustive list of why we can’t do something.  I myself can come up with the best excuses of anyone.  As women we have a bad habit of getting in our own way, over and over again.  As yourself the question “why not?”  Then challenge every single answer you come up with.  Force yourself to, as Nike would say, just do it.  Take the risk.  Make the effort.  Don’t worry about failing.  If we can figure out how to get out of our own way, it’s amazing to see what we can achieve.

How can people connect with you? 

Cynthia.cartmell@mwv.com or 843-740-2017.

The Job Coaches: The search for superstars

April 13, 2012

Karen owned a small design firm and was ready to hire another employee. After she placed an ad, she was thrilled to review a couple of resumes that seemed to showcase the exact type of experience that she needed the new hire to possess.

She brought the best candidates in for an interview and hired the person with the most experience and best portfolio. The new hire lasted only about three months before Karen had to start the expensive and time-consuming hiring process all over again. What went wrong?

Looking back, Karen admitted that she had been a little put off by the arrogance of this person during the interview. Still, even though she had reservations about her attitude, she hired her anyway because of her experience.

This mistake is quite common, especially among small-business owners who are looking for superstar employees to help them grow their businesses to the next level. When you hire, you should be hiring for attitude as well as for experience.

In today’s business climate, it is likely that any employment ads are going to be met with more resumes than in years past. This means that small-business owners will have a larger pool of potential hires to consider.

Why is hiring for attitude important? When you hire someone with an attitude that is not conducive to a peaceful work environment, it is going to have an impact on every other employee. Also, a manager or small-business owner with any experience can tell you that it is going to take more effort and time to manage an employee with a bad attitude.

There is no amount of experience that is worth risking the morale in your workplace or adding to your own workload.

Use your instinct. While it is not always possible to spot those who have an arrogant or condescending attitude, you may be able to weed out some potential problem employees just by listening to your instincts. In the interview, ask how they have handled confrontation in the past. Also, ask if they have ever had a work situation where they did not get along with another employee.

If you do not have a good feeling about the candidate, do not ignore that gut feeling just because he or she has a great resume.

You can’t teach attitude. Karen ended up replacing her problem employee by hiring one of her interns. The intern had very little experience but a great attitude. She was a team player who was always willing to go the extra mile. The intern turned out to be a model employee.

Motivational speaker Zig Ziglar said, “Your attitude, not your aptitude, will determine your altitude.”

This is not to say a small-business owner should hire someone with no relevant experience, but remember that many skills can be taught.

Attitude, however, cannot.

Pat Eardley is a human resources adviser with more than 16 years’ experience in H.R. management. She supports small-business owners, allowing them to have more time by focusing on creating a successful business environment for them and their employees.

The Job Coaches are experienced volunteers from the Center for Women’s Job Counseling Program. Ask them a question by calling 843-763-7333 or e-mailing info@c4women.org. If you would like further assistance, make an appointment; a donation of $20 is requested for appointments.

First appeared in the Moxie section of The Post and Courier Friday, July 9, 2010.

The Job Coaches: Human resources and small businesses

January 13, 2012

When you think about the dream of owning your own business, you may marvel at the thought of being your own boss, and you may be surprised by the hours that you have to put in. In fact, many small business owners say that they work much harder in their own business than they ever did when working for someone else. The difference is that you’re working hard for yourself. It’s like buying vs. renting.photo

You start thinking about your product and what makes you different from your competition. You consider what your location will look like, how you’re going to advertise and all the other necessary details. If you’ve been in business for a while, you may be thinking about what special you’re going to have next week or how you are going to gain new customers or clients. However, some new or tenured business owners are not thinking about employees much beyond salary.

Employees are the heartbeat of any business and even more so when it comes to small businesses. You want to hire people you can trust who will represent you in a positive way whether you are present or not. If a customer or client has a negative experience with one of your employees, they will remember that a lot longer than they will any positive interactions. You’ve got to have the best people on your team.

I went around town and asked some small-business owners about employee relations, training, conflict resolution and how they found their staff. Every owner had a different point of view, and the findings were interesting.

The first question was, “When you thought of having your own business, did you really think about the HR stuff such as compliance and employee development, or did you focus only on hiring and budgeting for employees?”

I was surprised that most said they had not thought about the human resource aspects of the business. One owner said he knew that scheduling can be a little tricky sometimes because most of his staff was part time, but he wasn’t expecting the “miscellaneous” things such as customer service training, personal feelings/needs and employee development. A more tenured owner said that she always has had a great staff but wasn’t sure how to enhance the position of the employee who is doing a stellar job and has a world of potential. She knew that if she didn’t do something she’d lose her along with her skills and knowledge.

I learned that even though some of the challenges were specific to the industry, type of business, environment or length of time the business has been open, the human needs were the same. Their staff members wanted to feel needed, cared for, respected and appreciated.

Here are a few tips on employee relations:

Matchmaking: When you’re interviewing, ask situational- or behavioral-based questions. Probe for real examples of how they have handled situations in the past.

It’s all clear: Write a job description. Make sure the potential hire understands what will be expected.

All ears: If you say you’re going to have an open-door policy, do it! Really listen and ask them what they think. They might have some solutions. Just because you’re the owner doesn’t mean you have to have all the answers.

Invest: Teach them skills that they will not only use in your business, but that they can take anywhere. This will show your employees that you truly value them and care about their personal growth.

Put it to action! Have some ideas of how you can enhance the duties of your star employees. As Zig Ziglar said, “You don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great.” You want the best employees to be keepers.

Slash the trash: A grad student once told me this when I was preparing for a multiple-choice test. Create an exit strategy for employees that may not be in the right position or industry.

Recruitment: Have a Plan B, a reserve list of potential employees. That will save money on turnover costs and is good for growth.

Owning a business comes with a long list of responsibilities, and as an owner you have many hats that you wear. I hope these tips are beneficial to you, your business and, most of all, your interaction and development of your staff. After all, they are a direct representation of you and your business.

Pat Eardley is an H.R. adviser with more than 16 years’ experience in human resources management. She supports small-business owners, allowing them to have more time by focusing on creating a successful business environment for them and their employees.

The Job Coaches are experienced volunteers from the Center for Women’s Job Counseling Program. Ask them a question by calling 843-763-7333 or e-mailing info@c4women.org. If you would like further assistance, make an appointment; a donation of $20 is requested for appointments.

First appeared in the Moxie section of The Post and Courier Friday, May 7, 2010.

The Job Coaches: Coping with a difficult boss

December 2, 2011

Think you’ve got the worst boss in the world? Well, your boss may have serious competition according to a recently released five-year comparative study commissioned by Lynn Taylor Consulting.

photoAccording to this study, seven out of 10 people believe bosses and toddlers act alike.

“Self-oriented” is noted as the top offending boss behavior, with stubborn, overly demanding, impulsive and interruptive rounding out the top five.

A recent Gallup management study of one million employed workers confirmed that having a poor relationship with the boss is the No. 1 reason people quit their jobs.

“People leave managers, not companies … in the end, turnover is mostly a manager issue,” Gallup wrote in its survey findings.

However, with the economy in tatters and jobs hard to come by, quitting may not be a viable option.

While you cannot control how your boss behaves, you are in control of how you manage the situation.

–Is your boss a glory grabber who takes all the credit for your good work? Sure it rankles to see the boss accept all the praise and fail to mention your contribution, but there are a few things you can subtly do to favorably remind others of your involvement. Send e-mails containing pertinent work information to your boss and include other key management personnel in the distribution. Casually mention your input on a project if you get to share an elevator ride with your boss’ boss.

–Are you dealing with a weathervane boss who changes the rules without notice? The most effective way to deal with this impulsive behavior is to clearly define the work outcomes with your boss when the assignment is given, and then send a confirming e-mail to him/her that outlines the established expectations. When your boss flip-flops on what is to be done, calmly share the e-mail and renegotiate the results.

–Does your boss remind you of a helicopter hovering overhead, constantly interrupting and micromanaging your work? First, you need to recognize and accept your boss’ deep-seated need for control; and then manage around it. Reassure him that you have the bases covered and keep him updated on your progress by sending periodic e-mails, reports, phone calls, a quick coffee chat or whatever communication vehicle your company uses.

–Could your boss be doubling as a secret agent, that mysterious person who’s missing in action and who communicates irregularly? With a boss like this, you must take responsibility for getting on his radar (sure it’s a pain, but failing to do so only hurts your performance review) by scheduling meetings or popping into his office to quickly chat, ask questions and confirm work assignments.

Bosses typically fall into one of three categories: those who are totally clueless about their behaviors, those who know they aren’t a good boss and do want to get better, and those who plain don’t care.

If your boss falls into one of the first two categories, you may want to discuss your concerns with them. Organize what you want to say, present it in a thoughtful manner and do not respond in anger, which only hurts you.

If your boss falls in the last category and/or may be behaving unlawfully, talk to your HR representative if your organization has one; otherwise speak with another trusted person in management or decide if you can continue to work for the company.

Always take the high road in dealing with a bad boss so your performance is above reproach.

Jane Perdue is CEO of The Braithewaite Group.The Job Coaches are experienced volunteers from the Center for Women’s Job Counseling Program. Ask them a question by calling 843-763-7333 or e-mailing info@c4women.org. If you would like further assistance, make an appointment; a donation of $20 is requested for appointments.

First appeared in the Moxie section of The Post and Courier Friday, November 20, 2009.

C4W Member Profile: Pat Eardley

April 6, 2011

What is your profession? Human Resources Consultant for Small Businesses

What do you enjoy doing outside of your career? I love shopping with friends and volunteering in my community and church.

How long have you been a member of the Center for Women? I have only been a member for a short time but I have been attending events and volunteering for about a year. I had a moment of truth with myself and I came to realize that I love C4W and there is no good reason not to be “all in”.

What inspired you to become a member? I love the diversity in both the membership and the programs offered. It really is an organization for ALL women.

What kind of impact has the Center for Women had on you? I have learned so much. We’ve all heard the statement “You don’t know what you don’t know” well that also holds true in learning. At the Center there have been informative seminars, speakers and classes on topics that I can’t say that I would have sought out on my own. The exposure has been excellent.

How has living day-to-day as a woman affected you? Well, being in my 30s and having been surrounded by female leaders from early adulthood until now has helped me to be comfortable, strong and empowered in my own skin.

What kind of message would you like to send out to women who are trying to succeed in today’s economy?It’s more like messages or words to live by. Never give up on your dreams, NEVER. If friends and family don’t dream with you, respectfully dump em’. You’ve got one life to live…..live it! Do your best, and you’ll never let yourself down.


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