What Are Your Amazing Goals or Ideas?

Chris Ferdinand of Renegade HR recently published a terrific collection of short, actionable things HR can and should do in 2010. With contributions from various leaders and writers in the HR space, Do Amazing Things is a terrific, quick read in its entirety, but I’d like to highlight just a few:

Lance Haun from Rehaul says: “I’ve worked with quite a few top performers in many different settings from every possible department. The one thing all of them had in common? They all made their co-workers and cross-departmental colleagues look like rock stars too.”

Be sure to pause and thank others for making you look like a star.

Paul Hebert from I2I says: “Employee survey after employee survey shows that recognition is a key driver of employee engagement, satisfaction and loyalty. Knowing that recognition is such a powerful driver now is the time to stand up and Recognize and Represent. … In 2010, make it your mission to create a culture of recognition within your organization.”

Couldn’t agree more, Paul. Excellent advice.

Nathaniel Rottenberg from Rypple says: “Feedback is a critical component in motivating and developing employees, and is essential for attracting and retaining high performers. Organizations that don’t foster feedback-centric cultures will ultimately fail.”

What's the most powerfully engaging managerial style? One that focuses on employee strengths. The least engaging? One that ignores employees entirely.

China Gorman of SHRM says: “”You’re the expert. Make recommendations. Execute plans. Link your goals to the business plan. Measure your results.”

Now is the time to start. Offer solutions that deliver real results in better performance targeted to your needs, greater productivity and bottom-line improvements.

Read through Do Amazing Things, then tell me what would you add to the list?

6 comment(s):

At February 08, 2010 6:47 PM, Chris Ferdinandi - Renegade HR said...

Many thanks for writing about the Do Amazing Things ebook. I'm glad you enjoyed it, and I'm looking forward to hearing what your readers have to say about it.

At February 08, 2010 9:26 PM, blank said...


I first saw the list when I visited Rehaul a few months ago.

It's a great list of ideas how HR can step up the game. It also energises the spirit of HR fraternity in navigating the professional landscape and challenges.

But, what raised my eyebrow was the thread by China Minor Golman of SHRM, "Don't Wait For Direction". She was summoned HR to take action, quoting SHRM CEO Lon O'Neil, "Kick the door to the meeting room and sit at the head of the table".

I think this is a little far fetched to the likes of reality out there. I get the drift of the message, but not many have the luxury of security to risk such extreme options.

In fact, I wished I could do more than that - kick some sense into those heads that just "don't get it" on how HR could impact in bringing business turnaround!.

But, frankly speaking, it takes more than courageuos exhortation by HR to champion their business case. For me, the problem lies at a more larger perspective and higher platform of voice - The recognition and acknowledgement of HR as a business critical and value adding profession. To see this, HR must

1. Elevate to professional status, governed by accreditated qualifications and competencies to perform their job, in accordance with

2. Best HR Practices and standards that drive strategic business goals and leverage the intangible value contribution of human capital. It cannot be left to MARKET FORCES and MUST be legislated, regulated and reported under statutory requirements of corporate governance.

This is the tipping point for HR. Anything less is paying mere lip service to the rhetoric, "people are our most important assets". This is at the heart of the pathetic reason why HR has to kick down doors or get "invited" to do their job to the best of their professional capasity and capability.

Do you see this happening to the CFO, why?. Besides the lag factor, it's simply "compliance" driven.

If I can't even persuade the top management in conducting an "Engagement Survey", what are my chances on kicking down doors to demand on such critical Strategic HR goals as Succession planing and Talent Development.

HR has never been more ready to step up the game. The big question is, are businesses, "ready" for the paradigm shift and turnaround plan - particularly in leadership style and cultural orientation.

At February 09, 2010 9:03 AM, Derek Irvine said...

Blank, I like where you're going with this. I've said before that HR shouldn't have to ask for a seat at the table. If HR clearly shows the value of what they do/can offer, then they will be invited! And this is where you seem to be going with your comment that HR is a business critical and value adding profession.

About a year ago a wrote a couple posts on what CEOs want from HR and what Boards of Directors want from HR. You may be interested in reading those:



At February 09, 2010 10:00 AM, Derek Irvine said...

Chris, you're most welcome. I very much enjoyed the ebook and your blog as well. Great work!

At February 21, 2010 10:44 AM, Chris Ferdinandi - Renegade HR said...


I like what you've mentioned about qualifications and certifications. I think there's a lot of people in HR who are probably dragging the profession down with incompetence.

That said, certifications really only measure one's ability to take a test - not to actually be an effective HR practitioner. That's one of the big issues I have with the PHR, SPHR, etc. I'm not sure they do anything to make you a better HR pro.

What I really liked about China Gorman's piece was specifically that she told us to take action.

Does that mean literally kicking down Marketing's door? Probably not for most people.

But generally, we're a "wait and do what we're told" profession. Having a prominent leader at the top tell people, "Hey, it's time to start grabbing the bull by the horns. No one else is going to do this for," was probably a much needed kick in the pants.

This is the tipping point for HR. Anything less is paying mere lip service to the rhetoric, "people are our most important assets". This is at the heart of the pathetic reason why HR has to kick down doors or get "invited" to do their job to the best of their professional capasity and capability.

Couldn't agree with you more there!

At February 21, 2010 10:34 PM, blank said...


I am a retired soldier who left to take up the HR corporate HR challenge. Hence, you can understand the "mercenary"
in me!

When I came on board, I asked what is my mission critical role. The CEO said, "take us global". Now, you tell me, "what would my strategic game plan be in converting a family owned business that had successfully survived on HR being a labour cum payroll function.

I tell you, it was one helluva roller coaster ride, having to read the political landsacpe and to contain my patience with "assehole" (According to Robert Sutton) leaders.

After 5 years of facing heavy "enemy" resistance from within and aborted campaigns to shift paradigms via best HR practices (including replacing a family anchored fear driven work culture), I can confess my work has been a failure. To ensure I get the leadership commitment of the SBU to the HR cause, I requested that HR P&P to be ISO 9000 ed!. Guess what?. I got short down by the very CEO who said he wanted a dynamic, disciplined and commited workforce.

My biggest problem is that the company is a profitable monopoly that can afford the luxury of arrogance and complacency. I can understand if it's a family owned or SME, but we are a PLC, for heavens sake ! Is there no accountability check on HR performance? That's why I am questioning the role and responsibility of external requlatory bodies in ensuring accountability of companies to HR. Forget the CEO - what has the board got to say?.

I dropped an e-mail to the local Security Commission and even faced-off with their corporate representative. Why is there zero input on HR in annual reports.

Hence, why should it bother the CEO. That's my line of argument. And, I get pissed off, listening to all that crap about corporate governance, disclosure and transparency stuff - when all that external audit are interested is in headcount number and forms. It's pathetic !.

It's a lost cause to many die-hard HR pundits. Far too many business leaders are short sighted to appreciate the "intangible" effects of human capital. For them, being on the payrol is a far as it gets!

It really sucks to realise HR are caught between trying to serve two groups on opposite ends !.

I personally do not believe HR practitioners shirk their passionate and duty-bound responsibilites by deliberately being incompetent, dragging their feet or wanting to stay out of the big picture business framework!.

Everything must be seen from a eco-system perspective, beginning with top leadership commitment - via actions.

I dare say, business leaders are not "ready" to support the HR challenge because they fear their own performance exposure at the level of lead indicators!.