• Refresh Leadership Banner 1

  •   January 20, 2017
    WhitehouseEvery four years, citizens from coast to coast go to the polls to vote for the commander-in-chief. And as an example of a peaceful transfer of power, the soon-to-be former president works with the president-elect to ensure the continued success of the United States of America. This transition is made complete on Jan. 20 during the presidential inauguration.

    This position of President is considered the top job in the country—so let’s take a moment to learn a thing or two about onboarding the 45th President of the United States of America and apply it to your organization.

    Smooth Transition

    One of the most memorable presidential transitions in history was between the Clinton and Bush administrations in 2000. Infamously known as the “hanging-chad incident,” George W. Bush beat Vice President Al Gore in one of the closest elections in history. The transition was full of pranks from the out-going administration, including the removal of W keys from computer keyboards throughout the White House. In 2008, the transition of power was completely different. To ensure that the new President would be ready to handle a crisis on day one, President Bush had several meetings with then President-elect Barack Obama to ensure the office’s success, including terrorism exercises.

    Most companies will not have the luxury of having as smooth a transition as the one President Obama experienced—and in many cases, there isn’t an employment overlap in which the exiting associate can train the incoming professional. But, that doesn’t mean you can’t mimic certain aspects of the presidential transition process. During this transfer of power, a transitional team is appointed to handle the logistics of the newly occupied position. In the same way, appoint a team who will be in charge of education, training, and introductions before you hire someone. Having a transition team in place with specific goals and agendas ensures a smooth transition when your company makes a new hire.

    The First 100 Days

    Originally coined by President Franklin D. Roosevelt referring to Congress, the first 100 days is now regarded as a critical measure of success for a new administration. During this time period, the President sets the tone for his first term in the Oval Office, usually sticking with plans laid out on the campaign trail. President-elect Donald Trump stated that he has plans to do just that, including bringing back jobs, appointing judges, and re-negotiating trade deals. The first few months of his term will be a benchmark for how the next four years will be analyzed.

    Just like the first 100 days of a President’s tenure is imperative for setting the political tone of the nation, the first 90 days of a new employee’s service is important for starting off on the right foot. That’s why successful onboarding should be the major focus during this time. According to the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM), “onboarding is the process by which new hires get adjusted to the social and performance aspects of their jobs quickly and smoothly, and learn the attitudes, knowledge, skills, and behaviors required to function effectively within an organization.” In other words, the new employee needs to have the tools necessary for performing the job, develop the skills needed to work effectively, and learn the company’s cultural attributes to ensure the right fit.

    The Importance of the Transitional Period

    In a Harvard Business Review survey, 70% of respondents agreed “success or failure during the transition period is a strong predictor of overall success or failure in the job.” Setting up your new employee for success sets up your company for success.

    Regardless of political leanings, most people want the Office of the President to be successful, because if the President is successful, the country is successful.

    With a focus on developing a transitional plan, creating a team to oversee a new hire, and administering an in-depth onboarding process, your organization has a better chance of ensuring the smooth transition of power—or at least smooth

  • January 20, 2017

    This Friday, President-Elect Donald Trump will take the oath of office and officially become the 45th president of our great country. I must admit, I’m cautiously optimistic about the impact of the new administration. There is one thing I know for sure, the president has a lot of work to do to get this economy moving.

    While unemployment has been cut in half since the Great Recession and the stock market is much stronger, a majority of Americans remain dissatisfied with the direction of the country. Economic anxieties were a significant issue in the presidential race.

    Something’s wrong. But what is it?

    The source of anxiety among Americans regarding the economy is hard to pinpoint. For decades, the unemployment rate has been the go-to metric for economists, journalists, politicians, and commentators when assessing the health of the U.S. economy.

    Lower unemployment rates have often been associated with positive sentiments about the state of the economy and the country. But today, that is not the case.

    The impact of a low unemployment rate isn’t what it used to be. As it turns out, there are four major factors contributing to this negative view of our economy:
    •The lower labor force participation rate distorts the unemployment situation.
    •Wages have been slow to recover following the Great Recession—and concerns of inequality are high.
    •Businesses are concerned about political and global uncertainties.
    •The recession of 2009 changed the way businesses operate. They are still suffering from the aftermath of the Great Recession. Many are holding back, sitting on cash, and being cautious.

    So, what should the new administration do?
    Pull back the curtain and you will see plenty of reasons that the post-Great Recession economy is not all it’s cracked up to be—jobless Americans on the sidelines uncounted, slow wage growth coupled with concerns of inequality, and businesses unsure how to react to world events, and whether it’s safe to take risks and invest. The president-elect, his administration, and the new Congress should zero in on four key goals:
    1.Getting more workers off the sidelines and back in the workforce with good-paying jobs by equipping them with the skills needed to do those jobs.
    2.Raising wages—not artificially with minimum wage laws—but through a growing economy.
    3.Relieving business of regulations, rules and barriers to success.
    4.Encouraging businesses not to be overly cautious by promoting policies that encourage re-investing in the economy.

    Learn more about this topic in a recently released Express white paper that seeks to explain this surprising trend—and proposed solutions—for the incoming president if he wants to address this angst:

    What’s Wrong with this Economy
    An Express Employment Professionals White Paper

    The future of America is bright.
    America is still a beacon of hope for the world and Express strives to be a part of that hope.

    At Express, we are dedicated to securing good jobs for people, and our mission continues, whether or not the headlines tell us—accurately or inaccurately—that the economy is doing well. After all, we believe we can always do better, and the American people want us to do better.

    An early test for the president-elect and his team will be whether they can look past some good news and see the challenges that continue to lurk beneath the surface.