Patra’s Tips




Free HR Seminars

The Alexandria, VA Small Business Development Center is putting on a series of free seminars on Human Resources. I am excited to be working with them on this project.

Save the Dates:
May 12: Basics of HR
This panel will provide an overview of basic people management issues, needs, and HR laws for small, growing organizations.

June 8: Hiring and Retaining Staff
Sept: Performance Management
Oct: Compensation

More information and registration:

Show Me the Money!

Want to be paid to hire a new employee?

Yes, it is possible! If you hire someone who has been unemployed and on unemployment insurance benefits for at least six months, you can apply for up to $5,000 in wage reimbursement.

Check your local Employment Services. In Virginia, the program is called OJT Program. Additionally, there is a tax credit program – WOTC. More info in NoVA: contact Mouly Aloumouati at SkillSource –

National Small Business Week

May 16-20, 2011

Big conference in DC:

But also a great marketing time for any SMB company. How will you leverage it?

Women in the Workplace

Two special reports on women’s issues – for hiring managers, executives, HR – and women. Emphasis includes women in technology, corporate career blocks.

Special Report

Wall Street Journal’s Report on Women

Military Appreciation in May

May is also the month when we recognize active duty military on Armed Forces Day (May 21st) and those who died serving their country on Memorial Day (May 30th).

May 6th is Military Spouse Appreciation Day. And while saying THANKS is always good, hiring military spouses is even better! Ask us if you need contacts to help do so.

Quick Links…

SHR Website
My WomenGrowBusiness posts

Leadership – The Problems
The Center for Creative Leadership regularly updates its research on leadership and continues to find that many of the most critical skills needed are missing in executives and managers. These include inspiring commitment, employee development, and building and maintaining relationships.Korn Ferry also publishes its research findings. Many in leadership positions are not effective at developing direct reports and others, motivating staff, or building effective teams.While these leadership issues are critical in any organization, they are even more so in smaller or mid-size organizations. First, effective leadership is directly correlated with success and growth.Second, there are fewer levels of management to compensate for poor leaders.What are you doing right?
When did you last stop and think about your leadership abilities and effectiveness? If you cannot remember, as many clients answer when asked, or if it has been over six months, schedule some time with yourself to think about this your leadership abilities and actions.Ask yourself: what am I doing effectively? What have I done recently to improve my knowledge? To learn and practice new skills? To actively develop my direct reports’ abilities to lead?One CEO I worked with was fine at motivating the staff but felt his executives did not need any attention. He had included development as one goal for each employee and budgeted for training to support management development. But executives were not included in development plans and he had no plans for his own. This attitude – that senior people do not need growth and development – is very common. And wrong!

Leadership: Whats Working Now
The problems in many organizatons were exacerbated by the recession. Yet, there is increasing recognition of the value added to an organization by those leaders who can energize their employees and demonstrate the meaning of work today in a positive sense. One cannot cut one’s way to success – investment for the future is critical.

If you can help people see the meaning in their work and develop their talents, you will create a community of leaders and a more effective organization.

Interested in learning more?   Consider
The Why of Work a new book by David Ulrich

IBM’s Global Work Trends study

Tomorrow Comes

The 150th Anniversary of the Civil War began in April. While this terrible war is one I have always had trouble even reading about, there are many interesting events and books coming up.

One valuable lesson from this war for organizations, among many, is the need for managing fear and for executing your plans. Last month I talked a bit about planning. And planning is always important to an organization’s success — and often ignored or shelved.

But effective execution is also critical.

General George McClellan was a terrific planner. He excelled at preparation and training of the troops. But he was not as good at execution. At the Battle of Antietam he had superior resources, a 2:1 ratio of soldiers, and yet did not exploit his successes. And General Lee and his army lived to continue the war.

As always, SHR does not share your information with anyone else. If you wish to be removed from our newsletter list, just send me an email and say so. You are welcome to share information from this newsletter with others so long as you include proper attribution. And feedback or your ideas for topics are most welcome!

Sign up here to receive the SHR newsletter via email!