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I think I have read and digested my share of “10 things that you should do better” or “get training because you can’t do THIS” or “stop doing this and do that” or “why job postings suck” or “you aren’t (big company) but you need to be like them”


We know there are efforts that have low return. That we have 4 poeple who get interviewed and we have to turn about 3, and we know that some technology or social media company has come out with something better, faster, and whatever that will make you rethink how you have done everything because its dated.

Its now mid year, and you have been barraged with media on what you don’t do. 

Well I am here to say keeping kicking ass and keep taking names. Recruiters, both good and bad ones, get up each day and have to deal with saying NO, or I’m sorry, or hear it from managers on something that probably isn’t their fault. And of course we screw up too. We make mistakes because we when you do something 100 times a day, especially manually, maybe you have a miss. 

Remember what you do – you help your company find people work they want to do or need to do. Help those people help their families. Live their dreams or aspire for more. You are part of the team that designed the new product or service, made it better, and got it to market. You are part of the team that found the educators, managers, leaders, and key team members that make your company a place that you want to stay at. Doesn’t matter if you are RPO, contract, corporate, or agency. PART OF A TEAM GETTING IT DONE AND GETTING BETTER.

My contribution to this barrage of “this is what you don’t do?” media blitz?

1) I am going to stop liking, sharing, thumbing, or commenting on ANYTHING that is negative. Our world has so much NO in it anyway. I’m certainly not going to participate in making negativity viral.

2) Anything I write or present I will have a “here is an idea or improvement” or “here is a great story in how” and will not have a dialogue on all the things that teams do wrong or can’t do. You want that negative BS..you can find it somewhere else, but not by me or my team. If you hear or read something from our team that is negative, call me right away so we can adjust and make it constructive.

3) I am going to keep asking people to do both of the above. To stop acknowledging negative thought leadership and start embracing the constructive kind. 

Happy Friday all – I hope everyone had a great week, and has a killer weekend 😉



2014. Another year. More opportunity, more to learn, and more to do. Always more to do.

You know what my new’s years resolution is? Well its not Big Data. Its BIG CHANGE. I have had it with people making small moves on the radio dial. Pilot this. Test that. Sample those. Really? Where is experimentation? Where is the calculated risk?

We see more data than most – and I know we will see more than most this year again. You know who made the small moves last year? The people WITHOUT data.

The ones who play by the numbers and invest in the numbers, they go for BIG CHANGE when they got RIGHT DATA (forget big data for a minute). Why? Because they KNOW. They know so well that they can even experiment. They try unusual stupid cool fun stuff that make people laugh and cry. I am not just talking about Google and how so many hours a week is for “whatever” time. All types of companies – if they got the evidence and proof to make a make a game changing move – they do it big.

They don’t pilot – they prototype. They have every intention of making 25 stealth bombers to sneak up on their competition and blow up their market share. They set out on a large scale program. They don’t hope for better – they PLAN to do better – and if they are really cool, they make the world just a little more awesome at the same time.

Every year there are all these predictions on what is on the horizon. You know what? its the same as was last year – its change. Its being better. Faster. Being straight up freaking awesome at what you do and making people feel good along the way. Working your tail off, getting smiles, and feeling good when you kick back with friends and colleagues and know that you contributed. 

So I look back at 2013 – what big changes did I do? I can list them on more than 1 hand. Already have a bunch planned for 2014. I know we will have Big Data. What I need to continue to work on is big change because I have that data and evidence.

January is almost up. We will blink and there goes the quarter. Then conference season (for me anyway) and then the boys of summer will be rounding the bases. It will go so fast. What big change are you working on right now?


We are pleased to announce that the Candidate Experience Awards (aka The CandEs) has asked Aspen Advisors and our Pando product to power the data and surveys that the CandEs produce.

Logging In
Users who are given a login and password by the Talent Board can access the Pando by clicking here, and then have the freedom to browse the data themselves, as well as download data and results of their own company’s survey.

Learning to Navigate Pando
A video has been provided to help users with passwords to Pando navigate the system and download their data as needed. You can view it on YouTube here.

About the Survey Data
Pando has been designed to accept data on an ongoing basis, but these results are reflective of the data collected by companies during the normal intake period by CandE (summer 2013). For questions in how to access survey results or learn more about Pando and how it’s working for the CandEs, call or email Aspen Advisors at 877.aspen.50 or pandosupport@myaspenadvisor.com.



So as I sit at the HRO Today conference in London, I keep hearing from any number of HRO/RPO providers on how they differentiate by:

– Helping customers uniquely
– Being on the forefront of media
– experimenting
– Breaking the mold
– Caring about customers
– innovating on being global

So if you are all doing those things, isn’t THAT the standard??

Only a select few are talking beyond this. About business outcomes or actually fundamentality changing the role of the HRBP/Corp HR.

All HRO firms are financially and socially incentivized to do well (because getting fired is expensive) and they do this work typically more than their clients, and they clearly add value.

So they can all execute. But how are they really different?

My advice? As with absolutely clarity ask these questions:

How did you impact revenue? Profit?
How did you impact leader effectiveness?
How much productivity was added to non HR personnel?
How did you advance corporate responsibility?

If you get some stuttering or smoke filled answers, you will know what you need to know about their impact on your business outcomes.


So I am unofficially declaring today Big Data for HR day. Not because it’s some random day. It’s all about Guy Fawkes and the link we have made between him and big data.


Okay – if you don’t know who Guy Fawkes is, then hit up Wikipedia quickly. If you do, you will remember the significance of quartering – which brings me to my next point. The four Vs of big data. If you don’t have these, you don’t have big data.

Velocity – your data changes quickly. At least so fast that manually updating it to maintain accuracy is not a viable solution.

Volume – lots of data – if it in excel and you don’t need much else to keep up with it, it’s likely not big data

Veracity – has to be accurate and relevant data, and if it’s not than it’s bogus. Bad and dirty data has to be cleaned and audited, and you need processes to clean it up

Variety – lots of it. Different data sources or diff data from the same source.

When I talk about the 4 Vs, I use an image from the movie V for Vendetta – which has a character who wears a Guy Fawkes mask. Good flick btw, but not for the kids.

So – remember remember the fifth of November – and happy Big Data day. Do the dance if you know it 🙂



That’s the edited title.

I hear some people keep talking about lack of data, dirty data, or not using the data they have in making business decisions. In fact they are using the data an obstacle.

If you have lots of anything, consider using it as fuel, rather than simply waste. You have bad data? Spread that all over the place and light it up.

Talk about getting attention. That’s right – expose it. Put it center stage and let everyone know this is the majority of what we have and this is how we make decisions – either using this data or using NO data.

Of course you can’t leave a burning heap in the middle of the stage. Harness the energy it produces to make action. Capture it, and repurpose it.

You can use that energy to produce new methods and then have cleaner fuels.

If people can turn landfills, weeds, grasses, used fryer oil, and manure into fuel, then we can use our dirty, bad, or poor data in order the get some energy and advance.

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