It's called work not awesome

It’s called work, not awesome

Michael Carden Employee experience 1 Comment

In my inbox last week. “I always read your HR posts with interest. They are sometimes very entertaining. I do however struggle to relate them to my job, as all my working years, its been a cat and mouse game of avoiding being shouted at or sacked. I’ve never known an employer that gives the slightest rats arse about what employees might think.” For many, worklife is bleak. Later that week, visiting a clearly still bemused new HR Director of SoMa* start-up. “It’s like the Wizard of Oz. You’re not in Kansas any more when the biggest HR challenge is …

Diversity is completely wrong

Diversity is completely wrong

Michael Carden Employee experience 2 Comments

He was literally leaping up the stage stairs. “C’mon everyone, let’s get those energy levels back up!” Far too Tony Robins for this small event. “Everyone, stand up!” Could I just ignore this? I reluctantly stood. I’d eaten too much buffet lunch. Who even was this guy again? I looked in the program while being exalted to tell the stranger next to me something that we had in common. He was from a heavy manufacturing company that had won a small town best places to work award. The speaker that is. The woman next to me was a real estate …

No-one comes to work to do a bad job

Michael Carden Employee experience 1 Comment

I’d been trying to flesh out a collab story on employee experience (EX) with Laurie Ruettimann for weeks. This is as far as we got: “I’m not sure if I buy into the whole concept of EX. Now, I’m an idiot. But if we keep asking employers to solve problems, we perpetuate a system that always lets employees down. When do we say that it’s up to employees to own their EX, and that the best companies will listen?” For those who don’t know Laurie, she’s the original HR disruptor. When I first met her, I think she just wanted …

Better doesn't mean better for everyone

Better never means better for everyone

Michael Carden Employee experience 1 Comment

Employee experience is by definition experiential: it doesn’t exist in a vacuum. Without someone to process it, it’s not a thing. If a tree falls in a forest, etc etc. More than that, we don’t all experience the same thing the same way. Our personalities, preferences and past experiences all play a role in how we interpret and react to the situations we find ourselves in. So when we talk about employee experience, it’s a bit of a misnomer. There’s no one employee experience; there’s exactly as many experiences as there are employees, and we need to start considering experience …

Response rate matters

Why response rate matters more than score

Michael Carden Engagement Leave a Comment

Pop quiz! What’s going to be more useful to you in the long run: a high engagement survey score with a low response rate, or a low engagement score with a high response rate? High engagement is good, right? Low is bad? You want to know if you have a highly engaged workforce, so you need as many survey responses as you can get. Ideally 100%. Definitely more than the 10-15% you can expect from surveying complete strangers. Response rate matters. Surveys are an average of opinions… of those who bother responding When do you leave a hotel review online? …

The anonymity paradox

The Anonymity Paradox

Michael Carden Employee experience, Engagement, Feedback 1 Comment

Communication is a spectrum. On the left is face to face. On the right is a YouTube comment section. In the middle are all manner of different ways of connecting. Bluetooth phone calls while driving. Group WhatsApp with those folk you met at a festival. Teleconferences where one dude is at an airport and only ever remembers to press mute before he starts talking. Each of these different ways of communicating has its own rules of acceptable behavior. There’s probably things you’d say in an email that you’d not say face to face. I’ve certainly found myself on written rants …