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Monday, June 13, 2011

Speaking to the Top of the House

The ability to influence an executive audience is an essential requirement for today’s leaders of all levels. Unfortunately, many are unable to effectively influence senior audiences to take action on their ideas. At the SHRM 2011 Conference and Exposition on June 28 in Las Vegas I will be speaking on this topic and I invite you to join me. In this highly-interactive session, you will learn how to:

• Immediately capture and sustain the C-suite’s attention;
• Present yourself credibly, authentically and engagingly;
• Deliver ideas that provide inspiration;
• Develop confidence to excel at results-oriented communications.

Recent research found that high-performing organizations have the head of HR reporting directly to the CEO. Only 67% of low-performing organizations had their reporting lines set up this way. As a result of this infrastructure, the high-performing organizations reported a stronger and more productive connection between business strategies and HR strategies when the head of HR reports directly to the CEO.

CEOs sometimes forget that people are the only real sustainable competitive differentiator. It’s up to HR to ensure the CEO realizes the value of these assets and commits to investing in a talent strategy aligned with business objectives. Lack of a talent strategy is the number-one impediment to executing on business plans. It is HR’s role to step up and convince the C-suite how to do this. Why? Because there are countless examples of how the business strategy falls down and goals are missed if talent is not aligned.

If you are an HR leader and want to earn a seat at the executive table, you must market the HR function so senior management realizes the value-add and the full impact of what you do and how you contribute to the business. You need to understand each C-level executive and relate your function’s activities to his/her strategic imperatives. One of the unique opportunities about being in HR is that your responsibilities infiltrate every aspect of the business. Why? Because it takes talent to get the job done. The collective talent of our workforces is the only sustainable differentiator that will provide competitive advantage over time.

I look forward to seeing you at SHRM.

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