Join us tomorrow over your lunch break!

Will you join us to discuss how to find the people who can add value to your company, slay your dragon and protect your “baby” because they love what they do?

Click here for the G+ HOA  – Friday, 9/19 at 11:30 am PDT

Click here for the YouTube recording. any time at your convenience after noon on Friday.

HR and Hiring Managers

Who are your bioscience heroes?

heroes of science 1Who are your heroes, living or dead? Who would you like to spend 30 minutes with and what would you ask them?

I’d like to put together a series of monthly Hangouts or video conferences with the best and brightest. Who should I ask?


HR and Hiring Managers

Hiring Tip #4 – Plan Your Staffing

Plan your staffing

Do you have apprentices in your R&D department?  Who is being trained to step in and up?  Plan your staffing in advance, not after the position opens up.


hiring, HR and Hiring Managers ,

Discover People Who Add Value Because…

Discover People Who Add Value Because They Love What They Do

By Jessica Dewell

Connections matter.

people who add value

There is a generally accepted way to post jobs, let established processes filter and finally choose a candidate based on set criteria. But what if the method reflected steps allowing applicants with desirable traits to become known? Or if standard procedures were all thrown out the window?


In a world where Millennials find no satisfying work but are fully integrating current social technologies, and where Boomers hold superior earning potential and may understand –yet not fully embrace –the power of social technologies, a chasm exists. Getting bodies through the door isn’t a problem in the hiring process. What is? Finding THE ONE who fills the role in more ways than anyone could possibly imagine. This gulf is difficult, especially when addressing the desires of employees while also striving to minimize turnover; within an existing process, these two goals may not align well, if at all.


As a hiring manager, your creativity is where you add value to the company. Having a strong network of people whom you support (and vice versa) helps achieve anticipated levels of success and fulfillment. With a limited amount of time, your connections offer insights regarding people whom you will want to consider. In addition, your ability to stay in touch with individuals who are a fit –just not today –is relationship-building at its best in the new social business world.


Just like products or services, team-building methods must evolve. Stale, tired processes will not produce desired results. (As you read on, please be aware that I’m speaking from a non-traditional perspective.)


I posit that everyone wants to contribute to an idea they can stand behind, enjoy the work and add value –regardless of the position. If not, the person either doesn’t understand the mission or it doesn’t align with their passions outside of work. (Certainly, some individuals perform the minimum job requirements allowable…and either find excitement and possibility in those nominal tasks, or leave because too much dissonance exists with the passions they do hold dear.)


Say a person strives to lead; yet teams tend not to embody that ideal. Translation: the expectation that came across during the hiring process doesn’t match the actual work environment. How then can we shift practices when working on team hiring and building? Let’s look at three areas: culture, adding value and differentiation.


Whether said out loud or not, company cultures exist. Furthermore, actions define the culture, regardless if those activities align with what’s written down.


Every single person in an organization has a purpose. Who in your company incorporates the mission and vision into every single action? Regardless of role or level, what matters is discovering such individuals. Potential hires need to meet these people, to see active, cultivated responses to the embodiment of the culture.


Closing gaps between vision/mission and role/responsibility requires ongoing vigilance. Anyone can work, some have more skill than others, yet in certain situations there is an energy that fills people –of which they may be unaware. That’s where your skill and training kicks in, to go beyond hiring for a specific purpose. When you find what lights a person up and you know their attitude and perceptions align with the company’s vision and mission…that’s a candidate for the aforementioned “just not today”pool of people. By keeping them close and staying in touch, you also embody the essence of the company culture.


Skills, attitude and service converge into reaching and surpassing team objectives.


People possessing a good sense of self offer more than those who don’t. Nonetheless, team building actively works with both types of individuals. Successful, thriving teams contain a variety of experience, personality, soap boxes and drive to accomplish work. When working on a highly-valued project, each will offer to support others through their strengths and passions.


Consider the Montessori school classroom: multiage span of students; one lead teacher and two assistant teachers; group time; and personal work time. The works covers five areas to encourage introduction, deep learning and mastery of the ability to lead and serve others in the group. Most teams have similar elements, yet still achieve varying levels of success even in this egalitarian learning environment.


Consider these common pitfalls that fragment collaboration, inhibit teams and prevent culture embodiment:


  1. Team members wear too many hats. With only so much available personal work time, too many disparate responsibilities dilute the ability to do one thing well.
  2. Individuals lack cooperative space where every personality can shine. Most often the outgoing and strong styles lead the pack. The strengths of such individuals can miss insight and information; less up-front communication weakens team results.
  3. Meetings are considered a waste of time because teams don’t have specific roles (scribe, contributor, facilitator, accountability check, etc.).
  4. Rotating roles within a team, to support cross-training and natural appreciation of the talents required for each position.
  5. The team is disconnected from other parts of the company. The idea of transparency and having a social culture is more important inside the company than outside. Intranets don’t bring enough connection: how can social media create raving fans working for the company, as well as long-lasting relationships with customers outside the business?


You are hiring talent, and true talent brings an active network of people.


Irrespective of needed skills, one cannot rely on traditional hiring models as the way to find talent supporting sustainability and growth of companies. People whom you truly want to employ will understand the value of connection and strive to continuously learn and develop application of their craft. Such individuals have blogs; participate in public communities; and apply their ample knowledge about the industry in both creative work and conversations.


Hiring people who seek to continuously learn and practically apply their knowledge serves to foster ideas and excitement for projects. The fact that talented people choose to work at your company speaks volumes to their own lasting connections.


Building teams takes time, as does cultivating relationships with sought-after individuals while waiting for the right time to engage. All this coalesces with thoughtful processes for bringing on and integrating new hires into a culture that promotes (in statement, action and practice) reaching specific goals of a role, a team, a department and the company’s bottom line over time. Not to mention, people who love what they do tell others…and maybe those “others”are interested in aligning themselves with your company too!




Jessica Dewell looks beyond the obvious to discover how and where you uniquely shine. She stresses the undeniable value and sparkling power of the business story –which is, of course, YOURS! Steeping strong marketing plans with the bright energy of your tale (and perhaps having a cup of tea or two along the way), Jessica guides you in bonding with and ultimately building loyal connections and customers.

hiring, HR and Hiring Managers

Thinking about hiring

Think about hiring   You never know when someone will leave, or a job will need to be filled.  You never know when you might meet someone whom you will want to hire.  Hiring – like marketing – really can’t be done only when you are in immediate need.

hiring, HR and Hiring Managers

Visions and Goals become Reality when…

Visions and goals


Deliberate action creates the reality of visions and goals

hiring, HR and Hiring Managers

Hiring Tip #1

The Right Person


Do you know who the right person is?  Or what their qualities are?

hiring, HR and Hiring Managers

Who do you want to see interviewed?

 Who do you want to see interviewed?

Interesting conversationWho are your HR heroes? Who would you like to have at a dinner party?  What wisdom do you seek for the amazing and, at times, overwhelming job of human resources?

My list goes:

  • Dan Pink
  • Seth Grodin
  • You

Would you be interested in hearing from job seekers?  A group of people in a particular field who gather to discuss their skills and enthusiasm for what they do?

Please do let me know in the comments or by email to



HR and Hiring Managers

Epic Failure: Confusion

Epic Failure causes confusion to the point where companies can go under


Talking with John Rose last week made me think of a number of times when the hiring manager, the HR person, the lawyers and the recruiter were not looking for the same person. Confusion reigned.
 photo titanic_sinking_zps98ed35f8.jpg

The lawyers want to protect the company from any unnecessary risks and are likely to think that any risk is unnecessary. Writing a position description that excludes some whole classes of people is a bigger risk than the chance that, say, a disabled person who otherwise has the skills can’t lift some arbitrary weight when lifting really is not a part of the job. And we have the ADA to think of too.

The HR person has pulled a standardized position description from a file or even online) and may tailor it a bit, but she doesn’t know the names of all the latest (since the time the PD was written) tools, procedures, tasks, etc.

The hiring manager is working overtime doing his own job and the open job, or worrying about them both and just wants a clone of himself.  Well, that won’t get the problems solved.  He really needs to think about the issues, tasks, procedures and decide what one more person could successfully do in 30 days, 60 days, 90 days, 6 months.

If the job description comes from the hiring manager, filtered through lawyers who only stop the most egregious dangers, written up by HR people who have a marketing flair and know what is great about the company, then the recruiter can find the right person.  You get what you ask for; be careful what you ask for!

If you need help with any of this, call me!  I know that there are many of you who are doing a great job and have the time to do so.  If you feel you are cutting corners because of lack of time, let me help!

HR and Hiring Managers

Epic Fail: Why you may be missing the right people

Conversation with John Rose

Are you getting the right people for your open positions?  Do you know why not?  What do you need to do to up your game?

It is an epic fail if you post a position description written by the legal department with no input from the hiring manager and your marketing team.

What one thing must the person you hire for that open position do in the first 30 days?  Is there more?  What about the next 30, 60, 90?  How will you know that this person succeeds?

What if you ask for the wrong thing in the job posting?  What a waste of time!  Don’t use the legal department’s conservative, risk-averse mindset as an excuse to eliminate the right person for the job!

You want to know what they “bring to the table”, but you also need to know what you want them to do with it!

Let me know if you need some help!

What epic fail prevents HR from finding the right people.

HR and Hiring Managers , , , ,