EMC Places in 25 Best Places to Work

EMCCEach year, Great Place to Work releases the best of the best companies to work for.  “Great Place to Work’s research and “Best Companies” recognition programs take place in forty-five countries on six continents and represent over 10 million employees’ voices, forming the largest and most respected employee survey worldwide” (Great Place to Work) I’m incredibly proud to say EMC was just ranked 18th on the list of 25 Great Places to Work survey globally.

As our president and head of HR just “cheered” us for a champagne toast congratulating us for truly defining EMC, I had a “life is good” moment and realized I made the right choice when accepting my offer about a year ago.

I am so terribly lucky to be so passionate about what I do.  These past few days have been anything less than hectic (and incredibly fun!) so it was so refreshing to stand with the people that make this company “happen”, clank champagne flutes as the survey results were released, and just understand why I’m here.

A major aspect of my role here at EMC is to give our employees the ability to feel passionate, engaged, and valued in the workplace.  This speaks miles to us being placed in the top 25 best places to work and I couldn’t be any more humble to work with the amazing team that I do every single day.

Cheers to 18th…just as David Goulden mentioned, top 10 here we come!

Check out EMC’s video about how we were just ranked 18th globally as the best place to work

Is Gen Y Lazy?

This post was originally published on The Huffington Post and written by me, Jessica Kline.

It’s true, according to the NY Times, “the proportion of new American high school graduates who go on to college – a figure that rose regularly for decades – now appears to be declining. In 2009, 70.1 percent of new graduates had gone to college [compared to the current 65.9 percent]”. On the other hand, 74 percent of those non-college students were in the labor force by October 2013 which is a figure that is on the rise from previous years. So with college attendance percentages dropping, but the percentage of those dropouts entering the labor force rising, which is it… is Gen Y unemployed, lazy (since people assume college attendance correlates with laziness), or neither?

We may be unemployed, but we are not lazy. We are a highly entrepreneurial group who are the world’s social media gurus and would rather wear jeans and flip flops to work than a pair of $600 heels. We are more likely to check out a store that a friend has checked-in at, we believe our laptop is way more informational and important than a textbook, and we’d rather take a pay-cut than stick to a 9-5 gig at work. We are more concerned about social issues than any financial ones on Wall Street and we will not disagree that we are totally the “me” generation.

How could we not be so self-concerned and “me”-minded though? We have watched previous generations get so burnt out they had to go on medication, our fathers not show up to our chorus concert and soccer game because he just “had” to go to work, our mothers disappear into her office on the weekends when her company’s president called, and we’ve literally seen our aunts and uncles cry during the holidays over their job. We are looking up to older generations in many ways but when it comes to work, we say enough. We aren’t lazy, we’re extremely proactive for recognizing the previous cultures of work hard but no playing hard. The adage “All work and no play makes Johnny a dull boy” rings true to us. So we created a different one. We may be self-centered but you have to look at the glass as half-full on this one because what’s so wrong about caring about our well-being, health, and happiness?

The percentage of high school graduates who choose not to go to college may be on the rise but so is the percent of entrepreneurs and healthy individuals. Why? Because, our generation is starting businesses at a faster rate than any other generation and we are the healthiest generation in over twenty years. We see more security in self-employment than any full-time job and by the way, 89% of us will choose when and where we will work rather than you placing us. And we started this health-kick…green menu-choices anyone?

I spoke with Caitlyn May, a rising Bryant University senior who is completing her honors thesis on this subject of Gen Y’s “laziness” and she gave her opinion through much research–

I have most of the Gen Y qualities that managers and business leaders are complaining about in the media as worrisome to the workplace: I am opinionated, I question authority, I am a quick thinker and I am selfish. However, I see that as having good and important input, adding value to businesses, solving problems instead of letting them sit, and my selfishness is starting to lead to a great work life balance. These qualities are actually why I got accepted to outstanding institutions like Bryant University and am holding internships. This is why I am researching how Gen Y can positively impact the workplace; by having these different qualities. In my opinion, having innovative intergenerational groups will solve business problems faster and better. Different generation values and experiences bring different qualities to the table with any project. Stereotypes just need to be overcome for other generations to work with millennials. Gen Y has worked hard to get where they are, and has more intrinsic motivation than previous generations. It’s sad and I take it personally offensive when I hear ‘millennials’ used as a derogatory term…it is stereotypical. Although the future will be different with 75% of the workforce being Gen Y, I am positive it will make for better business and an overall happier life.

 
 

It sucks for all of us to hear everyone say what a lazy, self-centered, and obnoxious generation we are. Our drug and alcohol substance abuse is the lowest it has been in decades, 75% of us see ourselves as authentic and not willing to compromise family and personal values, and we feel a personal responsibility to make a difference in today’s world.

According to Forbes, Gen Y will account for 75% of the global workplace by 2025. Things are going to be changing. All that we ask is that you hear us out instead of assume we are lazy. Now there may be some who define the term lazy in our generation, but don’t you know some people like that too? We are a very active, multi-tasking, opportunity-grabbing, and curious group. We go on multiple interviews weekly during our job search, we love to pick up random hobbies like DIY-projects, we say in ten years we will be millionaires, we constantly look for new opportunities in all different directions, and we love to travel the world.

That is not lazy-that’s dedicated, creative, driven, and adventurous. But, I guess I’m speaking on behalf of the not-so-lazy Gen Y’ers, the majority.

Strong Communication Skills

I think strong communication skills are key to any successful leader.  I am not sure whether or not many people recognize this but I believe they can be better leaders if they do recognize it.

Strong communication skills are key to any successful leader-they may not recognize this but by doing so they become better leaders.

 

ImageRe-read that paragraph again.  Both sets of sentences are getting the same point across but both are conveyed differently.  By me saying words such as, I think…I believe…I am selling myself short with credibility.  By turning the sentences into concrete statements without the “I think, I believe, etc.”, they become much more valid.  The communication aspect of this course is definitely one of the largest take-aways I have.  Before taking this course, it would have been extremely easy for me to never take a second look at those first two sentences.  Now after taking this course, it was very easy for me to cross them out and rewrite them to be conveyed more powerfully.

 

The book How to Say It for Women by Phyllis Mindell has now become my bible.  Many women struggle to communicate effectively and have their messages taken seriously.  This text explains it is because they have not learned the language of power, instead they only know the language of weakness.  I was always the woman who only knew the language of weakness until I discovered there is a language of power to be learned as well.  There are certain words which weaken a message by failing to establish authority (I think/I believe/I’m sorry), words which make you completely invisible (no words at all), and words which destroy your confidence (I’m only a secretary, but…). (Mindell, pg 4)

 

Yes, I still may find myself saying these weak words from time to time but what has changed, or what I have learned, is the ability for me to recognize it.  I am made aware of a fault of mine which I can fix with a little work on my vocal chords.  During this lesson, we also discussed Professor Demoranville’s tips regarding the power of talk.  One which is engraved in my head is know what you want, know where you want to be, and communicate it.  That is a very strong statement which I will take many places.  The bottom line here, as discussed in the Power of Talk Presentation, is that “managers who understand the dynamics of linguistic style can develop more adaptive and flexible approaches to running or participating in meetings, mentoring or advancing the careers of others, evaluating performance, and so on” (Coakley, The Power of Talk, 2013). By understanding what I want and knowing where I want to be, I can communicate that vision effectively to people and get there if I have the right word choice.

  • Put ideas out there and back them up – do your homework!
  • Know what you want, know where you want to be, and communicate it!
  • Be a pitbull – don’t do all the work but share credit; take credit for what you do.
  • Dismiss the overused term “I’m sorry” from your vocals
  • Review email thoroughly before you hit “send”

BlackBerry CEO Compensation Package

sales-compensation1Just last week in my employment relations course, I presented some research on severance and resignation packages.  A severance package is merely a pay and benefits package an employee receives when he or she involuntarily leaves employment at a company.  These packages include everything from stock options to insurance coverage.

Biggest severance package in history?  Remember that time Jack Welch was given a package estimated at around $417 million because GE just didn’t want him anymore?  That story topped the charts and went down in history.  Compared to BlackBerry’s most recent payout to Thorsten Heins at $22 million, GE went crazy.

But, now, large severance packages are expected of top management.  The newest fad seems to be large compensation packages-almost opposite of the severance deal.  A compensation package is a combination of salary and fringe benefits an employer provides to an employee.  So with severance, the employer entices you to leave.  With compensation, the employer entices you to join.

8 hours ago, Mashable released an article on the new CEO of BlackBerry’s compensation package.  The CEO is John Chen and he will be receiving a salary of around $1 million plus a performance bonus of about $2 million.  His package does include stock options.

What do you think about outrageous severance packages, and now high compensation packages?

 

Reference: http://mashable.com/2013/11/11/blackberry-ceo-88-million/

 

Do Facebook Likes Matter for Businesses?

via Do Facebook Likes Matter for Businesses?.

Facebook is an incredible marketing tool when used properly, but many people focus on the wrong aspects of Facebook for their marketing plans. The most misunderstood button is the “like” button, so if you are a business owner, you should take some time to see what this button can and can’t do for you.

Different Kinds of Likes

There are two kinds of likes that businesses go after on Facebook. You want people to like your page, because this allows you to get your foot in the door with them and start off on the road to engagement, which is the name of the game when it comes to social media. These “likes” are important for many reasons. Obviously, the one that most businesses know is that more likes on a page means more potential customers, but the other is the pesky Facebook algorithm. The more fans, or likes, a business page has, the more weight the site is likely to give it.

“Likes” on posts is the other type of like you can go after. While likes can help to get fresh sets of eyes on your posts, they don’t necessarily mean that people are engaging with your business. If you post a cute picture, people may not even associate your business name with the photo, and if you post an article, people may hit the “like” button without clicking through and reading your link. While it is great to have tons of likes on a post, don’t immediately assume that you will get new fans or business from a successful Facebook post.

What to Focus On

Your approach should be to attract new fans and engage with your existing fans. Posting relevant and compelling content is a great way to do this. When someone likes a post, you may get some extra exposure, but not as much as you get when people comment or share your content. You can increase engagement by asking your audience meaningful questions, giving your readers a reason to comment. Facebook does not make every one of your posts visible to all of your fans, so the more engagement you can get on your posts, the more visibility you can hope to achieve.

Diversify Your Marketing Campaign

Facebook isn’t the only social media site to use for marketing, so if you haven’t already branched out to other online marketing opportunities, now is the time to start. You should have a well-rounded approach that includes Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and a blog on your website. All of these pieces will fit together to create a marketing campaign that is more successful than just relying on “likes.”

Having hundreds or thousands of likes on a post is great, but if it doesn’t equal new customers, it hasn’t done its job. Create a marketing strategy that focuses on more than just likes, and watch your business thrive.

 

via Do Facebook Likes Matter for Businesses?.

Making A Point To Ask-Negotiating

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Suppose that two 30-year-old recent MBA graduates, a man and a woman, receive job offers for $100,000 a year.  By negotiating, the man raises his offer to $111,000, while the woman accepts the $100,000 without trying to get more.  Even if both receive identical 3% raises for the rest of their careers, by the time they retire at 65, the difference between their annual salaries will have widened to $30,953.

Really.  It’s true.  We all know men dominate the workplace over women.  They receive higher pays, negotiate more, and are the leaders of companies across the board.  By just simply making a point to negotiate anything and everything in the workplace can actually begin to turn tables slightly and create a more equal workplace where men and women are always treated equally.  Negotiating everything as you see acceptable of course.

As managers, we may not even realize we are technically discriminating.  Let’s say a there is word on the street that there will be a promotion in your office.  Frank walks in your office and lays out the 5 reasons he is well-deserving of the promotion and 6 reasons why he will excel with it.  Suzy doesn’t even think she can come to you and ask for it because society taught Suzy, and millions of other girls, to always care for yourself second and others first.  You give Frank the promotion yet Suzy would have done 3 times better.  You gave Frank the promotion because he asked for it.  But you discriminated by not offering the promotion for everyone else who was qualified.  Even women do it; even I do it in my group settings in academics without realizing it.

Women need to make a point to start asking.  Asking what promotions are coming up, asking for a raise, asking for a higher starting salary, asking what projects they can help out with, just asking.  The worst that will happen is someone will say, “no.”  

 

 

First You Have To Ask-Linda Babcock & Sara Laschever: HBR September 2002

Using Social Networks for Your Job Search

computer2Utilizing social networks for finding a job has been a topic of conversation in college career centers across the country but nobody really knows how to utilize the networks to land that perfect job.  Especially when most of the time that “perfect job” isn’t even advertised for on some job search engine sites.  Below are a quick few tips I have for utilizing Twitter and LinkedIn for your job search-don’t hesitate to comment your tips and tricks!

  • Let people know you are searching
    • Tweeting an image of your resume (without your personal address) and saying, “I’m looking for a position in marketing and/or communication-does anyone know of open positions at your company? #jobsearch #resume” can actually go a long way with your followers!
  • Completely update your profiles
    • Don’t leave cracks or black holes in your LinkedIn or Twitter profile.  Fill out everything fully-bonus points if you can make each profile consistent with the other.
  • LinkedIn job search
    • You can search for jobs on LinkedIn by keyword, country, and postal code. Use the advanced search to search for things like by location, miles from a location, experience level, company, job title, job function, salary, industry, and date posted.
  • Find the hiring managers
    • By searching by company on LinkedIn, or using advanced search by position and company, you can pull up what will most likely be the hiring managers! Connect with them with a personal message-“Hi Dave, my name is Jessica Kline and I recently applied to the Director of Marketing position with Target.  I have a few questions I would like to ask you and was wondering if you had time to talk.  I look forward to connecting and learning more about the position! Sincerely, Jessica”
  • Check out company profiles
    • On LinkedIn, they give great company profiles which break down the basics of the company.  The culture can usually be seen through these “words” so check it out and see if it is a right fit.
    • Twitter can also give you a sense of the type of company you are looking at-check out their tweets and who they interact with!
  • Update your LinkedIn weekly
    • Updating it weekly and filling it out completely will ensure you are the “Jessica” that pops up on Google when someone types in “Jessica Kline LinkedIn”-and not a stranger from Russia.
  • Join industry chats
    • LinkedIn and Twitter are constantly buzzing with people talking about different industry-specific topics-join in on them because you never know who is in the conversation or who is watching it!

 

Image taken from here