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Staffing Advisors Blog

Rewarding Achievement and the 'Curse of Competence'

Posted by Bob Corlett on February 11, 2014

The Zen riddle of hiring and performance management is trying to distinguish individual performance from team performance.

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How to Address Performance Issues Individually

Posted by Bob Corlett on February 3, 2014

Sometimes managers avoid dealing with employee performance issues out of a concern that a direct conversation will become confrontational, complex or time consuming. Other managers worry about creating potential legal issues if they don’t have a company policy to stand behind.

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And Now, For a Completely Different View of What Management Could Be

Posted by Bob Corlett on September 17, 2013

In the late 1970's Tracy Kidder captured a new kind of work ethic and (at the time) a novel kind of management when he wrote the business classic, "The Soul of a New Machine." It was a rollicking good story about engineers building a new computer. The story was really about people, and teams, and how management could create a completely new culture where amazing work could occur. Long before we were using phrases like "knowledge workers" or referring to part of California as "Silicon Valley" he gave us a preview, a new choice really, of what leadership could look like.

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Want to use a Feedback Sandwich? Don’t You Dare.

Posted by Bob Corlett on September 16, 2013

In a recent post in the Washington Business Journal, I interviewed Dr. Alice Waagen about how to be more effective when managing employee performance. She had some great insights into how the context of the performance conversation matters as much as the words you say. It’s a good read, check it out.  But we also talked about how much she detests the "Feedback Sandwich."

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How to Give Employee Feedback

Posted by Bob Corlett on September 16, 2013

Alice Waagen is the president and founder of Herndon-based Workforce Learning. We met to discuss performance management -- the toughest part of being a manager. The following is a lightly edited transcript of the conversation.

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What to do with mediocre performers 

Posted by Bob Corlett on April 15, 2013

I often hear from clients about their mediocre performers.

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Are Your People a Drag or a Sail?

Posted by Bob Corlett on January 23, 2012

We staff a lot of new initiatives. And we're often brought in when executives want to rethink how they have staffed a position.

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When is a Recruiting Problem Not a Recruiting Problem?

Posted by Bob Corlett on September 13, 2011

Q: When is a tough recruiting problem not a recruiting problem?

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Dealing with Toxic Employees

Posted by Bob Corlett on September 6, 2011

Six months ago Lori became the new VP of Human Resources at a successful company with a reputation for strong management. During her interview, the CEO was candid about problems in the HR department — it was sluggish, bureaucratic and distrusted by the executive team. HR was not a real business partner with the operating units. Instead, the departments muddled along on their own while the HR team obsessed over how to properly fill out the forms — but tragically, they did not even do that particularly well.

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What Neuroscience Tells us About Employee Retention

Posted by Bob Corlett on April 4, 2011

Some people dismiss employee engagement research as "too fuzzy."   Not me.   We have successfully integrated key principles of employee engagement research into our recruiting process.   I know it works.    And naturally, as a headhunter, I'm also fascinated with how people make decisions, so I devour research on the neuroscience of decision-making.

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