Archive for July, 2010

When All You Have Is a Hammer, Everything Looks Like a Nail

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Expert Perspective by Grahall’s OmniMedia Editorial Board

 The July 16, 2010 article in India Times (Why does talent management have to be so complicated?) pitches a book by “HR guru” Marc Effron called “One Page Talent Management: Eliminating Complexity, Adding Value”.  Interestingly it takes the authors, Marc Effron and Miriam Ort, nearly 200 pages to explain just one.  
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Filed under: Expert Perspective - Organization Development



Dodd-Frank: First Impressions

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Expert Perspective by Grahall’s Garry Rogers

Daniel J. Ryterband prepared a good summary of the compensation and corporate governance implications of the Dodd-Frank bill in his July 16, 2010 article Dodd-Frank: What It Means for Comp and Governance published in Bloomberg.com’s Business Exchange.

Ryterband says: “The Dodd-Frank law will affect executive compensation and corporate governance starting in 2011 with the “say on pay” provision. Other elements will come into play as the SEC issues new regulations.”

Until the new regulations are issued by the SEC, it is difficult to predict how broad an impact the changes will have, but this fact is telling – the SEC has plans to add 800 additional staff on top of the 375 it had already requested for the coming year. Together, this would represent a 25% increase in staff size to 5,000 employees, up from the current 3,800. 
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Filed under: Expert Perspective - Rewards



“Cleanliness is next to Fordliness.” – Aldous Huxley, Brave New World

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Expert Perspective by Grahall’s OmniMedia Editorial Board

Being the top paid CEO in the automobile industry might not be much to crow about in our world of TARP bailouts and Japanese dominance, but for Ford CEO Alan Mulally, his take home pay is significantly greater than his U.S. and Japanese counterparts.  A  June 29th article for Auto in the News titled Ford CEO Mulally Gets Paid More Than Top Three Japanese Execs Combined  tells us that: “As the only Big Three automaker that didn’t get a bailout and fall into bankruptcy… [Ford’s CEO] Mulally has been an integral part of the Blue Oval’s ongoing turnaround, and as a result his efforts are reflected in his salary.  In 2009, Mulally reportedly earned $17.9 million in cash and bonuses. This officially makes him the world’s top-paid auto chief.”

Perhaps these seemingly huge paychecks are part of our national culture of “rock stars” where entertainers, athletes and, maybe even CEOs are paid because they are the product.  No question that a company’s CEO isn’t your average “Joe”, and it is clear that Mulally is, if not “the product” per se, he has become at least a hero of sorts for the Ford Motor Company.
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Filed under: Expert Perspective - Rewards



Caveat Emptor

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Expert Perspective by Grahall’s OmniMedia Editorial Board

Kevin Crowley’s July 12th article in Bloomberg announcing the planned acquisition of Hewitt Associates by Aon (Aon to Purchase Hewitt for $4.9 Billion in Cash, Stock) sparked a lively conversation amongst our Editorial Board members.  Aon is, as Crowley says: “…the world’s largest insurance broker” and Hewitt “…provides payroll and consulting services to 3,000 clients.” 

Upon the announcement, Aon’s shares initially dropped by 10% but both Aon’s and Hewitt’s stock prices are up slightly for the week.  For Aon, this result might be based on the strength of an upgraded rating from “hold” to “buy” by Bank of America Merrill Lynch analyst Jay Cohen. 

But other than some possible anxiety on the part of Aon shareholders, what does this acquisition suggest? 
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The 80 20 rule revisited

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Expert Perspective by Grahall’s OmniMedia Editorial Board

For the “change agents” in any organization, Geoff Carss’s recent article How Successful Are You at Change? might be pretty depressing.  He writes: “The success rate for business change has not materially improved for 20 years in spite of increasing investment in management training and development… Only 18% of the changes … were successful.”

It has long been known that the human animal is resistant to change.  We seek equilibrium both biologically and emotionally.  But change management experts have found that creating a foundation of employee engagement reinforced with continual communication are keys to promoting successful change efforts. 

As we explained on our blog The Only Thing Constant is Change, a company needs first to determine it’s approach to change.  As we see it,  there are at least 4 different distinct approaches a company can take to deal with change:

1) understand and react to change
2) proactively manage change
3) predict and utilize change
4) create and exploit change

Whatever the approach to change, the outcome must include an assessment of the impact of change on the company’s business strategy, followed by a review of organizational capabilities in light of change, and a realignment of talent management strategies to ensure a better long-term result.”

But these alone may not guarantee success in a change effort.  Many organizations fail to evaluate all the drivers of change – one of the biggest being its compensation programs.  Compensation programs can deliver a hefty boost to any change effort, provided that the rewards are aligned with the goals.  Usually, “yesterday’s” compensation program won’t support “tomorrow’s” change effort. 

There is a proverb that says “When the music changes, so must the dance”.  Change initiatives need to inform and be supported your reward strategy.

For more on how to be successful at change, check out our other blogs including Competent to the Core.

Contact Grahall’s Omni Media Editorial Board at edie.kingston@grahall.com

Filed under: Expert Perspective - Organization Development



The New CSI: Compensation Strategy Investigation

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Expert Perspective by Grahall’s OmniMedia Editorial Board

Eric Dash writes in his June 8, 2010 article for the New York Times: (Fed Finding Status Quo in Bank Pay)
“…many of the bonus and incentive programs that economists say contributed to the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression remain in place… In many cases, risk managers do not have full access to the compensation committee of the banks’ boards.

No question that these large banks are complex environments.  In fact that complexity may well have contributed to the “the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression” as Dash described it.   Where there are complex environments, it makes the most sense to bring all the specialists together to examine and analyze circumstances and determine where problems might exist or arise.
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Filed under: Expert Perspective - Rewards



Grahall to Open an Office in the Dallas/Fort Worth Area

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Demand for Independent HR Services Compels Grahall to Open an Office in the Dallas/Fort Worth Area

DALLAS, TX (PRWEB) June 29, 2010 — Motivated by a dramatic increase in the demand for independent, flexible and creative HR solutions, tools, and ideas, Grahall, LLC expands its presence in the Southwest region. 

“Grahall’s new Dallas/Fort Worth office is an important component of our expansion strategy,” says Joe Davidson, a human capital strategy and talent management consultant who will lead the Dallas office. “With this office, we can respond to the needs of our local customers and enhance our human capital service areas, including Organization Design, Talent Management, Total Rewards Strategy, and Employee Relations. We are focusing our attention on optimizing the way we work with companies, including more flexible and creative consulting and staffing solutions to meet the demands of the changing workforce and economy.”

In addition, Grahall has a strategic alliance with Lawrence Associates, led by Dan Lawrence, a local consulting practice focused on total rewards, bringing broad human capital consulting resources to the region. Together with Grahall, they will provide readily accessible expertise and solutions to clients in North Texas.

This new office will provide outstanding support to clients, but also offer new employment opportunities to highly qualified consultants as well. Since its inception in 2007, Grahall has expanded its staff from just eight consultants to 44, with more than 100 consultants expected by the end of 2010.

Among Grahall’s top priorities for 2010 is the expansion of our distribution channels into the Southwest. Davidson says: “As a leading provider of intellectual capital, our distribution channels include the Grahall website (www.grahall.com.), surveys and research reports (www.grahall.com/knowledge/surveys), training courses (www.grahall.com/knowledge/training/), and our weekly newsletter.

The company’s new office is located in Colleyville, Texas. To reach Joe Davidson, email joe.davison(at)grahall(dot)com or call him at 678-642-1854.

For employment or career opportunities, visit the Grahall jobs board at http://www.grahall.com/people-resources/.

Access the press release at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2010/06/prweb4202104.htm.

ABOUT GRAHALL, LLC

Grahall is a diversified total human capital services firm founded on a deep appreciation of the impact of human capital on organization success. With a heritage in total reward strategy including executive and employee compensation, benefits, recruiting and change management, employee assessment and talent management our mission is to help make our clients successful. Our team includes experts in recruiting, compensation, benefits, finance, taxes, law, organizational development and behavior, and psychology.

Filed under: Grahall in the News