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Kevin Trokey

Great insight Steve. It is so unfortunate that more HR executives (executives in general really) are afraid of a little healthy conflict. In my opinion, every meeting and certainly every critical decision has to be challenged and questioned to ensure the right conclusion is reached. I also believe that, at the root of this issue, most organizations haven't fostered a culture that allows and encourages the tough questions to be asked or the health conflict to take place. Until that happens, incomplete conclusions will continue to be drawn.


Great post- It is so important to step back and look at things through an objective lens. Sometimes when you are right in the middle of everything going on you can't see the full scale of what is really happening. Get yourself up on top of the mountain so you can see the entire valley. Only then can you make informed decisions- when you are removed from the personal aspect you can make objective decisions.

Steve Roesler

Kevin, thanks for weighing in.

When we discussed this issue, your insight indeed was a barrier: creating an atmosphere where people can feel free to say what they want (of course, they need the evidence to back up their evaluations).

Appreciate your addition to the conversation. . .

Steve Roesler

Gina, your take is a bit different but no less important--and common. It is easy, isn't it, to simply be in the "middle of stuff" and lose perspective by not being able to see the forest for the trees?

John Jorgensen

Steve, great perspective. It is also important that the CEO ask tough questions also. I have seen a few who just "chatted" with candidates that they would have as direct reports or have extensive interaction with, even after coaching from the top HR folks in their organization. CEOs and some high level hiring managers just don't seem to understand that HR is, unless it is an HR position, a screening group and not the ultimate decision maker. Not enough realize that recruiting/interviewing/hiring is a collabrative process. Blame can be laid on both sides.

Derek Irvine, Globoforce

One way to solve this problem -- employee recognition, strategically implemented. What do I mean? The way we encourage our clients to structure programs lets them quite easily uncover the hidden gems -- those people who might not ever get the spotlight but do receive frequent thanks from colleagues and superiors for consistently delivering. Those "stars" with a "career aura" as you suggest may have a few thanks for singular projects, but it's quickly clear their reach is somewhat limited.

Sure, this is still one data point to be considered in a situation such as you describe, Steve, but it's a critical data point management often lacks and that can be easily surfaced.

Armen J.

Very important and interesting issue mentioned. I think the culture of the companies should change in order to have better results. Its the company who will benefit by being able to change the way this issue is approached.

Jim Morgan

Sad, but true, Steve. How often do we go into yet another company and find the person who should have been let go years ago, but instead gets promoted--usually into another unit, so his or her old boss no longer has to deal with them? Leaders who are blind to a person's faults are one matter. Worse are those who know the person is problematic but won't speak up. I wish I had time to research the psychology behind that, because there is a definite pattern. Thanks for bringing up the topic.

Judy White

Thank you for your highly valuable post, Steve.

There are a number of components as to why this occurs in many organizations.

While there remains a great deal of work ahead on this issue, the broader focus on talent management and next generation people management practices will help to incorporate distinct measures, transparency and accountability in future investments and decision making regarding talent.

Appreciate your focus on this issue.

Judy White, SPHR, GPHR, HCS
The Infusion Group


Thank you for this great post. Talent management has become one of the most innovative elements in the hiring process, but what always strikes me is the importance of keeping our top talent once we have found it. It seems the most important factor in Improving Employee Satisfaction is paying attention and making changes when needed, and possible with employee input. If you know what your people want top talent stays, productivity goes up and profits increase dramatically. It's simply following a recipe for success!

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