Forget your ego, build a great #team. An interview with Janice , HR consultant & founder.

Can you give a brief introduction of yourself?

I am an HR professional who spends around 9 months of the year traveling not for work (though that does happen) but for fun because travelling is my passion. Because of my passion, I run my company virtually, giving help to start ups and small businesses that don't need and can't afford a full time HR person but need to be pointed in the right direction with certified help or just need help for a project. This along with in person workshops and webinars is how I make a difference to organizations.

How does great human resource management influence a company?

If people aren’t happy, they won't work as well as they could and therefore the organizational performance suffers. Most people think that HR is just about recruiting but this is not true.
Skill-enhancing HR practices include practices designed to ensure appropriately skilled employees, such as comprehensive recruitment, rigorous selection, and extensive training.
Motivation-enhancing HR practices include those implemented to enhance employee motivation, such as developmental performance management, competitive compensation, incentives and rewards, extensive benefits, promotion and career development, and job security.
Opportunity-enhancing HR practices are those that empower employees to use their skills and motivation to achieve organizational objectives. HR practices like flexible job design, work teams, employee involvement, and information sharing are generally used to offer these opportunities.

Finance and operations are vitally important to any organization. HR helps organizations communicate their goals and motivate staff. Without customers, money and staff, an organization can't exist. You can't do much about customers, as they are an external influencer, and money only comes in when they are happy. However, you can do something about your staff. Treat them as you wish to be treated. Don't keep them in the dark, don't treat them like they are dumb, and don’t assume you know best. Ask them questions about how to improve a process. They deal with the day-to-day obstacles more than you do, so trust them. If there is no trust, nothing will work like it should.

TEAM: Together Everyone Achieves More. What makes a good team?

A lack of ego and willingness to learn makes a good team. You don't know everything, so surround yourself with people smarter than you and be willing to admit when you don't know something. Trust makes a good team, as does knowing everyone’s strengths and weaknesses and making sure there is a balance of skills. This does not mean you should push people into lots of group activities and bond over games. It means everyone does their job and knows where they fit into the overall scheme.

Is there any difference between hiring for start-ups and hiring for cooperate?

There are differences between hiring for start-ups and hiring for bigger corporations, but there are also differences between one company and another. The skills employees need for a start-up also tend to be broader compared to bigger companies. The ability to adapt and be flexible is prized, too. However, at the end of the day one thing is constant: You should be hiring the best fit for the job!

Forget your ego, build a great #team. An interview with Janice , HR consultant & founder.

Some companies think of hiring like a sprint - where it is a marathon. A big part of the effort should not only go to the recruiting, but also to the on-boarding, integration and on-going management. Can you tell us more about this?

Recruiting is an important part of hiring, but it is not the be all and end all. It helps to set good foundations for what is to come, and with so many companies thinking short term and just end up doing the hiring themselves, they miss out on the bigger picture. Most people are great at their jobs, but that does not mean they are experts at HR. Employees are the cornerstone of your business, and so you should be taking the long term view because you end up wasting more money in the end.
It never fails to surprise me how much people forget about on-boarding. There are still corporate companies where you can arrive on your first day and not have the tools to do your job like a computer and a phone. What start-ups don't realize is that on-boarding starts from when a new hire first hears about you and then every touch point afterwards.
On-boarding is not the same for everyone because everyone is different and everyone learns differently. The core should be the same, but it should be individualized to your new member of staff. It goes a long way to making them feel special.
Setting expectations is crucial in the first weeks and should be followed up with again at regular intervals down the line as things change. Do not wait for a yearly review; reviews should be done far more regularly.
The hiring effort should also not end when the employee leaves it is a well-known fact that the most cost effective hire is a referral. Make sure when someone leaves, you conduct an exit interview to find out why and if there is anything you can change

How is working efficiency affected by the work environment?

Work environment can include many things, from where your desk is, the amount of noise, the temperature of the office, and if you like your boss. All of these things and more can change how a person feels in their working environment and how well they do their job.

Studies show that comfortable, well-ventilated and well-lit, safe workplaces increase productivity as much as 16 percent and job satisfaction as much as 24 percent, while also reducing absenteeism.

Organizations with strong learning culture have 37 percent greater employee productivity, according to Bersin & Associates’ 2010 study High Impact Learning Culture.

Company culture is a big player in work environment, which is one of the reasons why I left a previous job. The job itself was fine, and I was good at it, but the culture was not a good fit for me and it took me years to realize this. As an HR Consultant, I have learned how to pick up if someone is a good fit for the company culture and understand how deeply this can effect turnover. They might be a perfect fit in all other ways but ultimately will cause more problems in the long run.

Transparent and open communication, which leads to trust, is also important, along with recognition, but once again all of this is part of company culture. This can't always be explained from the inside. I have dealt with many companies and helped them discover their company culture, which has led to better hires.

What is the biggest mistake to avoid for a start-up when it comes to attracting and managing talent?

Not spending enough time preparing and researching is a huge mistake in terms of attracting and managing talent. How do you know what salary to offer? How do you know where to look for candidates? How do you know what your process should look like? Research and preparation! There is nothing worse than hiring someone and not having enough work for them to do. This can be avoided by creating a good job description in which you have researched how much time each task will take and how often the employee will do it. Another mistake is not knowing the difference between a job description and a job posting! (I am not going to give away all my secrets here, but trust me, there is a huge difference)

Forget your ego, build a great #team. An interview with Janice , HR consultant & founder.

What is your motto?

This question made me think, as I don't believe there is one motto that works for everything I do. I think I have mottos for work, for travel, and for life, and all those blend in with my lifestyle. Always ask yourself at the end of the day, "What have you done to change someone’s life today?"

Anything else you want to share with our WHubbers?

It is not just about getting the right person but also being a good company to work for. It is also okay for people to grow and want to move on.

What is your #StartupPassion?

My start-up passion is giving workshops on everything from hiring to making your office virtual to networking for introverts, as well as helping out with charity work and mentoring (everyone should have a mentor).

Follow her on twitter

Forget your ego, build a great #team. An interview with Janice , HR consultant & founder.


Forget your ego, build a great #team. An interview with Janice , HR consultant & founder.

Recommend to a friend

Next on your reading list