Best of the HR blogs: 12 great HR blog posts from May 2012


Leadership, loyalty and Lindsay Lohan

How has May 2012 been for you? In the world of HR blogs, at least, it’s been another superb month, with a bumper crop of outstanding posts touching on a remarkably wide range of subjects, including leadership, Lindsay Lohan and loyalty (the latter being a recurring theme in a number of posts this month…is there something in the air?).

Other subjects highlighted by leading HR bloggers this month include introversion, quagmires and coping with diabetes. And so much more besides…

May 2012 has also been something of an anniversary month. XpertHR notched up its 10th anniversary. And the XpertHR Employment Intelligence blog achieved five years of service.

There have also been some notable “blogaversaries” out there in the wider HR blogosphere, with both @JulesJ85‘s Rambling Southern Monkey blog and @TheBuzzOnHR‘s The Buzz on HR blog celebrating their first birthdays. Many happy blogging returns, ladies! And if you know of any other anniversaries that have just passed or might be just coming up in the world of HR blogs, please do let me know!

Before we get to my pick of the dozen best HR blog posts of May 2012, a few wee announcements:

  • The image used on this page was sourced from Wikimedia Commons.
  • As always, this list is necessarily both selective and subjective. So if there are any HR blog posts that you’ve particularly enjoyed during May 2012, please share your recommendations via the comments box below, or get in touch via Twitter, LinkedIn or Google+. I’d love to hear from you.
  • And as per, this list of the best HR blog posts from May 2012 is presented in alphabetical order by author surname.

Best of the HR blogs: 12 great HR blog posts from May 2012

  • Steve Browne & the GCHRA HR roundtable: Taking HR to the trenches in 2012 Are the HR trenches the best place to be in 2012? I’m delighted to report that the question that I posed on this blog last month was taken up by leading US HR blogger Steve Browne, and used as the jumping-off point for a fascinating discussion at the latest monthly meeting of the Greater Cincinnati Human Resources Association‘s (GCHRA) HR Roundtable.  Steve very kindly agreed for me to present the full minutes of the May 2012 HR roundtable meeting on taking HR to the trenches on the XpertHR blog, as a way to share the key learning points emerging from this discussion with XpertHR’s readers and widen the debate. These make for fascinating reading…and watch out in particular for the section on maintaining the “mystique” of HR! Steve further explores the topic of the “mystique” of HR in a highly-recommended post on his Everyday People blog.

  • Melissa Fairman: Hacking HR You probably won’t have heard about this, but a little company called Facebook apparently had an IPO this month (I know! Me neither…). Inspired by Facebook – and more specifically by some of the working methods that have underpinned its stratospheric success – Melissa Fairman poses two great questions in this post: “How can we hack HR?” And following that, how can we “SHIP IT”? Make sure you follow Melissa on Twitter, and check out her HRreMix blog, too!
  • @FlipChartRick: If HR can’t do data… Tweets are described as a form of micro blogging, so why can’t a single tweet be part of my pick of the month’s best HR blogs? In fewer than 140 characters (tweeted from a session at the fourth ConnectingHR unconference, Rick perfectly describes why data skills need to be recognised as critical for HR in 2012. This unconference discussion also inspired a superb post from Rob Jones: The One With The Paradox of Metrics. For another Twitter-length take on this topic (from back in 2011), see this post: HR wisdom (4): Neil Morrison on what they don’t teach you about HR.
  • William Gould: SM Engagement – It’s Personal A truly lovely piece of writing from William Gould in this post from Victorio Milian‘s consistently brilliant Project: Social HR blog. Here, William explores the phenomenon of the social media “lurker,” and talks about his readiness to engage via social media on HR issues, whilst being hesitant to do so with fellow diabetes sufferers. This post abounds with brilliant writing. For example: “Our imaginations are engines of the absurd; we take seemingly disparate bits of information and weave ridiculous narratives of chaos and pain. We create our own anxieties out of little knowledge, and almost no experience.  We do it to ourselves.” I also particularly like William’s point that the willingness to share knowledge and wisdom requires “the humility to take risk, and to overcome the apprehension that we create in our own imaginations.”
  • China Gorman: Employer Loyalty Isn’t Dead? Wait. What? A great post from leading US HR blogger China Gorman, looking at data from MetLife on trends in employee benefit provision. Here, China zeroes in on data from the survey suggesting that there is “a widening gap between employer and employee perceptions of company loyalty towards employees.” China asks: “Have we all assumed that employer loyalty is dead and gone forever? That employees ‘know the score’ and don’t expect employers to be loyal to them?” She says that, in common with many others, she had supposed “that the issue of employer loyalty was dead.” But the MetLife data suggest the risk of a burgeoning “loyalty gap.” China argues that HR and executives would do well to take action to close this “loyalty gap” sooner rather than later.
  • Kate Griffiths-Lambeth: The Merits of Medlars “Businesses risk missing out on exceptional knowledge and skills when they overlook employees with more understated styles.” It’s perhaps unsurprising that as a card-carrying introvert, I particularly enjoyed this post from self-proclaimed (one might even say card-carrying) extrovert Kate Griffiths-Lambeth on recognising what introverts can contribute in the workplace. As with any post from Kate’s Leading Light blog, this piece is extremely wide-ranging in its sphere of reference, beautifully weaving in references to Jacob sheep, medlar jelly, workplace appraisals and the Royal Navy.
  • Dawn Hrdlica-Burke: Naughty HR A brilliantly written post from one of my favourite HR bloggers. In this post on the Fistful of Talent blog, Dawn takes issue with negative portrayals of HR on US TV, which she says typically portray HR as “the Lindsay Lohan of the office.” She argues that sometimes it might be more appropriate to view “HR as corporate janitor.” So why the Lindsay Lohan and janitor comparisons? Check out Dawn’s post in full to find out!
  • Charlie Judy: Always Looking “Loyal? About as much as you are to me. And that’s really as far as it goes.” If it ever came down to it, Charlie Judy would likely be voted HR blogger least afraid to speak his mind. His HR Fishbowl blog is always a must-read. In this thought-provoking posts, he says: “You should always be looking for a job. Always.” What’s your take on this? I’d love to know.
  • Diane Lee: The Challenge of Being a Knowledge Worker Brilliant stuff from Australian HR blogger Diane Lee on the complexities of the knowledge economy in the 21st century and the related challenges faced by the knowledge worker. My choice quotation from this post: “Being a knowledge worker is not unlike being back in court in 16th Century England. There are factions, sabotage and behind-the-scenes power plays that would chill even the Tudors. Manoeuvring through this quagmire is akin to walking through a swamp filled with landmines. A foot wrong, and the whole thing is likely to blow up in your face. And take your career with it.”
  • Neil Morrison: Seeing Things Differently This post and the next one in my alphabetical list both have a lot to say about what can be learned from radically changing your perspective. Here, Neil Morrison describes his experiences at a session in Hamburg facilitated by Dialogue in the Dark, which he describes as “a social enterprise which brings together the sighted and the visually impaired and essentially turns the tables.” Long-term readers of Neil’s blog will know that he places a very high value on self-reliance and taking personal responsibility for one’s own actions and life. So it is extremely interesting to read his account of a situation in which “from an initial position of wanting to just do it all myself, I had to let go.” There’s a least one valuable lesson here for everyone reading this post: “[W]e send too many half packets of data and rely on the receiver to decode.” Read Neil’s post in full to find out what prompted this observation!
  • Sukh Pabial: Be Free A lovely simple multimedia post (you can read it, or alternatively listen to Sukh read it to you) inviting you to take a moment to empty your mind and to reassess everything around you. For some reason, this post puts me in mind of some of the latter posts from dearly-departed UK HR blogger TheHRD, author of the seminal My Hell Is Other People blog (but Sukh resoundingly wasn’t and isn’t TheHRD, before anyone jumps to any incorrect conclusions!).
  • Robin Schooling: Gravity with a bit of HR Gravitas Louisiana-based HR blogger Robin Schooling offers up some very interesting reportage on key sessions from her recent local SHMRM state conference… concluding with words that could almost constitute a manifesto for the global HR profession in 2012: “HR is serious business. But that doesn’t mean there can’t be a dash of irreverence, a sprinkling of joy, and an abundance of passion. HR is also enjoyable.” Robin’s words here also chime with discussions about the need for passion in HR, in a great post from this month by UK HR blogger Gareth Jones.

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2 Responses to Best of the HR blogs: 12 great HR blog posts from May 2012

  1. William Gould 31 May 2012 at 11:52 am #

    Thank you for the kind words Michael.

  2. Michael Carty
    Michael Carty 31 May 2012 at 11:54 am #

    My pleasure and privilege, sir! Please do keep up the great blogging!


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