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Monthly Archives: May 2013

The role of professionals in society, like the role of companies, is shifting. As professionals, we are increasingly aware of the critical role we play in society and the responsibility to ensure our talents are accessible not only to those that can afford them. It is time that in addition to assessing the responsibility of companies, we take a hard look at professional social responsibility.

To that end the Taproot Foundation has generated the first ever professional social responsibility (PSR) ranking for “office” professions (e.g. not doctors or teachers).

TAPROOT PSR RANKINGS BY PROFESSION

The PSR by profession provides broad insight into the relative responsibility of professions regardless of their employer or employment status. Professionals on average donate five hours per year with lawyers leading the pack at over 25 hours.

  1. Legal
  2. Management
  3. Art, Design, Entertainment, Sports & Media
  4. Architecture and Engineering
  5. Business & Financial Operations
  6. Computer and Mathematical Science
  7. Sales and Related

This ranking is created based on US Census data on hours of pro bono services provided per member of each class of profession.

TAPROOT PSR RANKINGS BY PROFESSIONAL SERVICES FIRMS

One of the best ways to measure the responsibility of professionals is by measuring the commitment to pro bono service by professional services firms. These professional services firms set the expectations for their profession.

Tier One (5%+)

Design Firms

Tier Two (2-5%)

Law Firms

Architecture Firms

Management Consulting Firms

Tier Three (1-2%)

Advertising Firms

Public Relations Firms

Tier Four (0.5 – 1%)

Technology Firms

Human Resources / Talent Development Firms

Market Research Firms

Tier Five (Under 0.5%)

Accounting Firms

As there is no consistent and reliable data on pro bono service at firms, Taproot has generated these rankings based on our over a dozen years working in the field. The numbers associated are the estimated average percentage of billable hours done on a pro bono basis.

Source: http://www.linkedin.com/today/post/article/20130517124003-201849-2013-professional-social-responsibility-rankings

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When it comes to being interviewed, many candidates naturally are nervous, thinking over what questions they’ll be asked and making sure they are selling themselves in the interview. And similarly, the people doing the interviewing often forget that they not only need to be sold on the candidate but they also need to sell the role they’re hiring for. I’ve found more often than not, candidates neglect to “interview the company” they are meeting with and find out whether the organization is a good fit for them.

The fact is, our greatest and most valuable asset is our human capital. The way we invest that capital is up to us, and it is a responsibility we should not take lightly. Why invest your greatest asset in a company that won’t give you the best return? This is not about compensation at all; it is about the ability to do one’s best work and grow as a professional. A bad decision on investing one’s skills can lead to the biggest loss, which is unrecoverable – lost time! My grandfather used to remind me always that “time and tide” wait for no one. The opportunity to do great work that is lost because of a bad decision is too big to not take seriously.

In the end, you have to manage your career objectively. When you go on an interview, you need to interview your hiring manager and assess the company you are about to bet on, just as seriously as they’re interviewing you. Then very thoughtfully make the best investment of your talents.

Taking a new job always presents a risk – you are coming out of your comfort zone where you presumably have a certain level of security and influence. But a new role often presents opportunities to stretch yourself, make new connections and expand your knowledge. And most importantly, contribute to your industry at a greater level. When you face these decisions you have to have a clear vision on how you want to invest your stock.

To find out how the potential employer will invest in you, ask questions that get at the heart of what you’re looking for in your next role. Determine if the hiring manager has a clear and specific vision for the role. Is there consistency around the true north of the organization amongst all the people you are talking to? Is the company or team structured in a way that you can learn and grow? Are they asking insightful questions, or regurgitating generic interview questions that don’t really let them know what you’re about? You have to dig deeper about the role and structure to find out if this job will make your stock rise over time.

And don’t forget – the interview starts the moment you arrive in the parking lot. Look around – are the people engaged? Excited? Are you seeing employees passionately discuss topics, or are they closed off? Pay attention to the little cues you see while you’re there to get a sense if this would be a place that will raise your stock. And always research the company in great depth before you make your final decision. Read analyst reports, browse their job site, look at age of open jobs, find those in your extended network who may have insight into the company culture. Just as you wouldn’t invest your money in a stock without researching it in great depth, don’t invest your human capital in a company without a lot of due diligence.

Learning the skill of interviewing a hiring manager will in the end net you the best opportunities in your career.

Source: http://www.linkedin.com/today/post/article/20130514133743-10904058-how-to-interview-your-hiring-manager

How can you get any work done when you’re in meetings all day? You can’t. But instead of griping, be more discerning about which meetings you go to. Before saying yes to invitation, ask yourself, “If I was sick on the day of this meeting, would it need to be rescheduled?” If you answer “no,” then decline the meeting and try one of these less time-intensive alternatives:

  • Get an agenda. Ask to look at the agenda ahead of time so you can pass on your comments to the meeting organizer to share on your behalf. (Bonus: This may force him to actually make an agenda!)
  • Delegate. Send someone else from your group to communicate your team’s perspective.
  • Ask for notes. If someone is going to share important information but you’ll just be listening, request a copy of the meeting notes after the fact.

Source: Management Tip of the Day, Harvard Business Review