Tag-Archive for ◊ employees ◊

• Tuesday, January 24th, 2012

Nominations now open for Employee of the Month

Shout out the hardest workers in the DMV!

More than 711,000 employees make Washington, DC run efficiently, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Add the surrounding counties in Maryland and Virginia, and the number grows to more than 1,000,000 people who drive business, revenue, and services in, and around, the nation’s capital. We seek to sing the praises of many of these hardworking and talented employees in our new article series, Employee of the Month on Examiner.com.

In order to make Employee of the Month a success, your nominations – and spreading the word about the friendly competition – are vital.

Submission Process and Guidelines

Anyone may submit a nomination for consideration for Employee of the Month, including those who wish to self-nominate. Eligibility is based on two criteria:

1. The nominated employee works in the metropolitan Washington, DC area (i.e. the District of Columbia, Northern Virginia – Fairfax County, Prince William County; Montgomery County, MD; Prince George’s County; Howard County, MD)

2.  The nominee must work for a company, nonprofit organization, federal/local government, or educational institution; be support staff, a manager, executive director, administrator, intern, or anyone who works there; and, be a part-time or full-time employee of the company

Winners are selected based upon how well the nominator documents the employee’s contributions to the workplace. Nominations should be sent in Microsoft Word, and contain no more than three paragraphs. Include the nominator’s AND nominee’s name, telephone number, and email address.

Tips for writing a successful nomination:

  • Include specific contributions to the workplace
  • Indicate nominee’s work title and employer
  • Specify why the nominee should be selected asEmployee of the Month

Employee of the Month Submissions

Email nominations to eotm@ksgsc.com. Winners will be featured in an upcoming article on Examiner.com.

For complete details and submission guidelines, visit www.ksgsc.com/eotm. Follow us on Twitter @KesiStribling or @CareerConnectDC.

This story also appears on Examiner.com.


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• Wednesday, December 14th, 2011

Employee of the Month

It’s time to recognize the hard-working, innovative, and dedicated employees in the metropolitan Washington, DC area! Beginning in January 2012, my new article series, Employee of the Month on Examiner.com, will sing the praises of employees who work tirelessly to contribute to their workplaces. In order to do that, we need your help.


Nominate an Employee of the Month!

Nominate a deserving employee to be featured in our new article series on Examiner.comEmployee of the Month. Anyone is eligible to nominate an Employee of the Month, based on two criteria:

1. The employee works in the metropolitan Washington, DC area (i.e. the District of Columbia, Northern Virginia – Fairfax County, Prince William County;  Montgomery County, MD; Prince George’s County; Howard County, MD)

2.   The nominee can work for a corporate or nonprofit organization, be support staff, a manager, executive director, administrator, intern, or anyone who works there, and be a part-time or full-time worker

Employee of the Month Nominations

Nominations open on January 1, 2012. To view the nomination guidelines and submission process, visit www.ksgsc.com beginning December 30, 2011.

Winners will be featured in an upcoming article on Examiner.com, and on our affiliated social media pages, blogs, and in our publications.

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• Thursday, August 25th, 2011


Apple names former COO Tim Cook as top leader (photo: official Apple portrait)

What Steve Jobs’ resignation letter reminds company leaders to do

Although Steve Jobs’ seemingly sudden departure yesterday as Apple’s CEO comes as no surprise to technologists and business leaders who have been following Jobs’ health concerns, his announcement continues to leave the global technology world reeling.

Steve Jobs’ resignation letter: “I have always said if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my duties and   expectations as Apple’s CEO, I would be the first to let you know. Unfortunately, that day has come. I hereby resign as CEO of Apple. I would like to serve, if the Board sees fit, as Chairman of the Board, director and Apple employee. As far as my successor goes, I strongly recommend that we execute our succession plan and name Tim Cook as CEO of Apple. I believe Apple’s brightest and most innovative days are   ahead of it. And I look forward to watching and contributing to its success in a new role. I have made some of the best friends of my life at Apple, and I thank you all for the many years of being able to work alongside you.”

The part of Steve Jobs’ resignation that is most striking to me is not the declaration of his intention to resign from his current position. I am fascinated by the immediate launch of the succession plan the company already had in place, in case of emergency, such as the departure of its Chief Executive Officer – former Chief Operating Officer at the company, Tim Cook is already listed on Apple’s website as CEO. Whether it is a health issue, corporate restructuring, or merger and acquisition, the succession plan, if constructed and implemented well, causes minimal disruption to the flow of business. A company like Apple, as the unarguable leader in global technology with the iPad, the iPhone, and iPod, cannot afford the perception of an unstable entity – there are billions of dollars in sales and stocks riding on the organization’s smooth transition.

But, how many companies or smaller nonprofit organizations have taken the proverbial bull by the horns and sketched out a workable succession plan before a major event or upheaval?

By definition, a succession plan encompasses the process for identifying current employees to fill key leadership roles in the event that there becomes a vacancy. The executed plan minimizes a lag in leadership, allays employee worries about corporate uncertainty in the midst of transition, and provides as little disruption to the production of goods and services at an organization as possible.

 Following are key issues to consider when developing a succession plan that we have used to aid clients in this daunting task:


Elements of a succession plan

  • Identify potential scenarios that would require the execution and implementation of a succession plan, such as funding changes, death, illness, corporate reorganization, merger or acquisition, physical move
  • Start with internal areas/departments that are most immediately affected by sudden change in the organization, including the executive level of leadership, customer service, human resources, program management, and fundraising
  • Assess employee knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs) required to successfully handle the position, including technical skills, fiduciary and budgeting skills, knowledge of foreign languages, exercise sound judgment, and oral and written communication skills
  • Consult with department heads and employees to develop a list of individuals with promising leadership ability, their skill sets, and performance highlights to begin developing a list of potential employees to fill key roles
  • Engage the Board of Directors or Advisory Board and allow them to participate, as appropriate, in the succession planning process
  • Review your organization’s training programs and ensure that there is a methodology to capture employees’ KSAs, document them for future reference, and use them in the succession planning process
  • Conduct scenarios that enable selected staff to demonstrate skills and make critical decisions prior to transition into a new role, including managing projects, developing complex budgets and forecasts, employee supervision, and organizing a press conference
  • Document employees, their strengths, KSAs, and feedback from staff about the prospective leaders in a company database so that it can be referred to as needed to identify internal talent
  • Include a standard operating procedure (SOP) in the succession plan, so that if the plan needs to be implemented for a division with little warning, there is a step-by-step guide for selecting the employee, transitioning that person, and acclimating him to the new role

While these elements of a succession plan are not exhaustive, they will help get your organization started on the right track when developing or tweaking the plan. The most important thing to remember is that once the succession plan is cultivated, it should be available to all leadership within a company, and updated as needed.

Does your company have an outstanding succession plan? Leave a reply below to tell us about it.

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• Tuesday, July 12th, 2011

Theatrical release poster/New Line Cinema

Horrible Bosses pulled in $28.3 million during its premier last weekend. That should come as no surprise as the summer heat beckons us to cooler environments. Movie theaters are the perfect place to enjoy a little humor while keeping cool. The draw, however, was not solely the promise of frigid air for a few hours. Folks flocked to the big screen comedy to gain a glimpse into the characters’ world of horrible bosses – and how they dealt with the annoying rabble-rousers.

In Horrible Bosses, art imitates life for most of us. We have, or have heard about, horror stories involving supervisors who demonstrate weird behavior in the workplace: sexual harassment, slacking off and doing no work, or basic ineptitude.

Characters played by Jason Sudeikis, Jason Bateman, and Charlie Day are believable on the big screen, even though their zany plans to eliminate their horrible bosses is far-fetched. For the rest of us real people, how can we bear the burden of horrible bosses, get our work done, and even thrive in a dysfunctional environment?

In all fairness, there are probably multitudes of great, supportive supervisors out there. For those poor souls who brave the horrible bosses every day, here are some helpful strategies for dealing with them.

Surviving Horrible Bosses

1. Know who you are dealing with and act accordingly

If your boss morphs into the Incredible Hulk when employees approach her early in the morning, take this cue to ask any questions or get feedback later in the day. You can easily gauge your supervisor’s personality by taking time to observe her in the workplace. This includes how she treats her inner circle, including the executive assistant, human resources manager, and any interns assigned to the department. Does she treat certain individuals differently? If your boss seems to become more pleasant with an individual than the rest of the team, figure out why.

Does that employee anticipate what your supervisor will ask for and have it in advance? Does the staff member exert extra initiative? Does the employee cower or stand up for his or her rights in the workplace? Take a moment to study an employee who seems to get some level of respect from horrible bosses (yes, there is usually one), figure out how the positive interaction can work for you, and implement the process for yourself. Take care to avoid artificiality. Bosses will notice it, and it may place you in a less desirable situation than you are already in at work.

2. Don’t give them an inch and they won’t be able to take a yard

Some bad bosses simply get away with bad behavior because employees, who want to make a good impression when they begin work, change the game in mid-play. Most people, at work and in life, get used to the way people behave and respond. If you started the job with a can-do, bend over backwards to get it done spirit, your supervisor will always think of you as a go-to person who never says no. Even when it is 7:00 p.m. and you are trying to leave the office to pick up your son at daycare before it closes at 7:15 p.m., a bad boss will expect you to call your spouse, neighbor, or stranger to collect your kid from the babysitter. Having a little backbone in the beginning, while still displaying the ultimate professionalism, helps curtail excessive expectations from an insensitive supervisor.

3. Let them know when enough is enough

There are times when a bad boss’ behavior crosses the line – morally and legally. I do not recommend that you consider hit men to take care of these annoying individuals as the protagonists did in the movie Horrible Bosses. Instead, do three things: take your temperature; get feedback; and, put them in their places.

Taking your temperature – or surveying yourself to identify if you are responding appropriately, or are overreacting – is the first step in identifying what, if anything, you should say to a cantankerous supervisor. Consider the boss’ behavior. Is the perceived violation a personal affront? Offensive to everyone? Offensive to women, transgendered, or racially different (from the supervisor) employees? A bad mood leading to a one-off slight?

If the temperature is off the charts, the next step is to get feedback from someone else. It always helps to get another perspective. A coworker who reports to the same supervisor, or has witnessed bad behavior by the boss, can shed light on the situation and help you determine if you should advance to the final step: put them in their places.

There are many ways to check bad behavior in the workplace. If your supervisor’s activities warrant intervention, there is a way to address the behavior professionally, and without potential repercussions. If you have a good relationship with your horrible boss (it can happen – think Dwight Schrute), then you may be able to gently approach the subject. If your supervisor is not that congenial, you may want to take the situation to your human resources department and let the hr professional deal with your supervisor directly. Not only does it take the pressure off you, it lessens the likelihood of potential retaliation if human resources handles the issue appropriately.

4. Become indispensible at work

Chances are that if you are indispensible in the workplace, horrible bosses may check their rude behavior so that you do not quit your job. They may still be ill tempered and rude; however, these supervisors generally know not to press their luck with you.

Develop and display your exceptional skills – fiscal responsibility, the ability to troubleshoot and fix office technology, exceptional speech writing capabilities – that your horrible boss relies upon to get through his or her day. When people have to ask you to do things, they are less likely to tick you off for fear that you may not help them or will be reluctant to assist when you are truly needed. Sadly, this is a reality in some workplace environments.

Do you have a horrible bosses (or staff) story to share? We would love to hear how you overcame the situation.

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