Being an Entrepreneur

Have you ever build a company entirely on your own, right from the scratch ? Does your story includes restarting , yet carrying your strengths from one venture to another?

When you look back at your journey, do you too find the dots connecting? Yes, you have a long way to go and that’s what the dots are guiding you to?

How were you as a child and how did that shape you? Were you an extrovert or an introvert? Will, I guess I was an ambivert and still remain so! Did the small incidences from your life shape your behaviour, choices and your life?

Did your lows and highs have a similar story that can match many around you? If you have taken the road less travelled, did it feel different or obvious for you?

If you had to summarise in three points what would it be? For me, its

  1. Curiosity
  2. Being ever-amazed
  3. Hard work, of course !

I was honoured to have been invited by Sampath Iyengar, Chief Visibility Officer at The Indian Networker, talking about who I am, my journey as a professional and few lessons that I picked on the way.

It was great fun as Sam kept asking witty question I was least expecting, putting me to my wit’s end!

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Interestingly few areas of my life that probably even I ignored, came up while talking to Sam. I must add, loved reflecting, in such a witty and a joyous way!

Let me know if your story sounds similar ! I am waiting to hear that.

Women as driver to growth in the age of driverless cars !

Where does women stand, in the age financial meltdowns, geo-political differences and AI? 1 robot out of 4 factory workers in Maruti. The numbers looks even more interesting in totality with 2400 robots at Manesarand 5000 facility. Are we still competing with men for jobs and seats at Premier Institutes? Where does this lands us especially when women have lesser access to education and finances?

India ranks 87th in Global Gender Report 2016 with highest participation of women in education and health sector. Does this set any target for us?  The report further showed that the highest level of penetration remains in the Education and Health sector with fewer women in Technology and Policy making !

With equal participation we can add upto 28 trillion by 2025 which is equal to a combination of US & China’s economy . So what do we need to build this equality ? What are the building blocks that can affect growth ? Law and order , financial independence and education?

These are few laws worldwide that instils sexism so deep that imagining equality remains light years away! When we restrict women legally how does it impact her participation socially rather financially?

 

World Economic Forum reports women remain unpaid for 50% of her productive time at work. How does this add up to her pay?

Global gender index shows Iceland, Finland and Norway tops the chart and not the leading economies! Why is it so? Is it the access to education and policies at work that makes it happen? Few days back when Maternity Benefit act was amended in India, we had people worrying about women no longer being hired. Norway offers 44 weeks of maternity leave. No wonder they have 47% of women participation in Public sector and 26% in the private sector! When we have family friendly policies at work, we are no longer forcing a women to choose between family and work

This tweet sums up the support , policies, access to education and finances that we need! Here we have an young woman as a pilot to Air India taking the same official commute with her mother who works as an air hostess! This organisation isn’t a nimble-foot startup. It is not a super funded private company with loads of money to spend. Yet, that’s how strongly they have been balancing diversity.

40 economies that participated in Global Entrepreneurship monitor reports women Entrepreneurship rate rose by 13% whereas it was 5% for males. However in India , the perceived opportunity for women is 41% compared to their male counterparts. Anusha, who celebrated her 25th Birthday recently pitched her second startup to me. And she is not in Bangalore or Mumbai but in Vishakhapatnam. Her first startup is running successfully in association with Andhra Pradesh Government. According Deloitte report, Millennial women are bridging the gender pay gap. Are we planning anything to bridge the financial gap for the ageing women workforce too?

Where does the empowerment needs to happen? Anuja Shukla, head of Google for entrepreneur runs a project on her on own where she gets girls from age 8-15 to code. Revathy Roy , founder Hey Didi , formerly Vira Cabs, have trained more than 10000 women from socially backward classes to drive. She created employment for them through her startup. She empowered them to own their vehicles and earn out it, offering loans from banks with no collateral. Urvashi Neogi runs her profitable Event Management firm, Biz Integration with her Geographically based team. She doesn’t need a 9-to-5 at an office with face time from her team members.

Here’s a research by Adobe on Future of Work which says, future lies in collaboration and diversity of skills. So what does this imply? In the age where commitment to the work and the speed of delivery remain the only measure at work, do we still need the archaical work design? Would the jobs of tomorrow offer women more potential to deliver? Will the organisations of tomorrow have the bandwidth to build the leaders of tomorrow irrespective of gender?

If you have any HR Query or any query on Future of Work, Employee Engagement, Talent management, Women Empowerment, Retention or Business Strategy please write to me in here. Looking forward to learn more while finding solutions for you. This have been re-blogged from nabomita.com

Nabomita is the Founder to Nabomita.com. She is the Top 100 Women Achiever Awardee, awarded by Government of India , TEDx Speaker, Quoted on ForbesUS, one of the Top 20 HR Influencer in Social Media as declared by SHRM India and one among the Top 100 Technology Influencer in India. Connect with her on @nabomita_smiles , Facebook Page and Google+

‘Brand You’ works: My journey through building my own startup

Almost a decade back, at XLRI , Dr. Mathai Fenn taught us ‘Brand You’. When he said employers will hire you for who you are , we heard it as a theory. He defined , that the services you deliver and the value you create, is your brand. And that alone can get you around the world!

Today, I write this to share how this worked for me inspite of all the Financial Slowdown, Geo-Political changes and Robots taking away our jobs!

It’s been a great year ! And I am writing this to thank everyone who have been contributing to my success. It’s still feels as if it was just yesterday when I started on my own! A dream that I wanted to live but never knew would happen to me.

Almost an year back, I started working for me. Yes, I was finally the boss I wanted to be and work for 🙂

Initially, I had no plan for what I would want to deliver. There were many options to explore and I believed things would shape up as I would go along. It will remain one of the best decision I ever made!

I never knew what I did had any monetary value to it. I love building communities, connecting businesses, identifying solutions and delivering them. I feel strongly for causes I have been working for. And, I loved speaking about them. Initially, I couldn’t imagine it to be a profitable venture, till I had companies actually looking for it! It has been an exhilarating moment, each time I found a business house quoting a monetary value. The magic of getting paid to speak is immeasurable to me!

Evangelism arrived for me professionally! I had never imagined it would. I never knew the impact of what I did, till I started doing it for me!

Few of the most cherished moment have been speaking at the Think Tank by Adobe, and researching on Future of Work and presenting it in San Francisco, addressing World Forum for Responsible Economy by RESPCO Institute in association with French Government, delivering my first TEDx Talk at TEDx Bocconi U Mumbai, delivering Faculty Management Program at Rajagiri Business School, delivering the Keynote to more than 5000 delegates at E-Summit in Hyderabad, Inaugurating India HR Summit 2016, Inaugurating and delivering the Keynote at International Convention at SVIMS and many more!

I have been working with amazing business leaders, who have not just added on to my experience but even mentored me! I can not thank enough to those people who went beyond commercials to Special thanks to Ministry of Women and Child Development, Dr. Nanu Bhasin, Dr. Jessy Fenn, Mandar Joshi Executive Director TiE Pune, Vishwas Mahajan Trustee TiE Global, Urvashi Neogi Founder Biz Integration, Chitra Narayanan and

I can’t thank enough SHRM India for naming me in their Top 20 Influencer in the country and Indian HR Convention for celebrating my work. It was a joy beyond measure seeing Nabomita.com mentioned in the Ecosystem Partner to TiECon Pune!

Building a firm is all sweat and blood. But then its all worth it, when the world celebrates it with you ! The pain and challenges I went through seems small when I am acknowledged for my efforts. Thank you and cheers to every such moment !

If you have any HR Query or any query on Future of Work, please write to me in here. Looking forward to learn more while finding solutions for you.

Nabomita is the Founder to Nabomita.com. She is the Top 100 Women Achiever Awardee, awarded by Government of India , TEDx Speaker, Quoted on ForbesUS, one of the Top 20 HR Influencer in Social Media as declared by SHRM India and one among the Top 100 Technology Influencer in India. Connect with her on @nabomita_smiles , Facebook Page and Google+

How long would you wait for that job offer?

“So I applied for a job in late November and had three interviews throughout the month of December. They all went really well and I was even referred to by a well respected employee of the company. I was in contact with the HR coordinator throughout the process and said she will have more information for me before the holidays (Christmas and New Years). Unfortunately I never heard back. So I emailed her after the first week in January and she apologized and said she was out of the office…fine, no big deal. But then she said she will have something for me at the end of the week. So about two hours went by and she then tells me she got off the phone with corporate and she won’t have anything until the end of the month, but if I can wait they will have “good news” for me. I was a little disappointed because I now have to wait another 3 weeks, but I really want the job so I told her that I’m very interested in the position and I’m willing to wait. 

So the end of the month comes and still no response. I emailed her again kindly asking if there is an update and she emailed back saying they will have more information later in the week or early next week. It’s now early next week and I still haven’t heard from the company.

Are they stringing me along or should I just keep being patient?”

The answer looks straight into our eyes! When you are being communicated and yet not offered the role, it says more about the decision making capabilities of the firm. Every Job Opening have a closing date mentioned on it. The Hiring Manager are well aware of it. No job remains opens endlessly. Any requirement is supposed to be closed within 45-60 working days, at the most.

Gone are those days when companies could hire for to build the internal resource pool. No talent in the current economy can remain unbilled for long. Hence, every requirement have a monetary return mentioned on it. Any delay in closing the Job Offer can extend the monetary impact, leading to a loss. The preference remains on getting the talent billable as early as possible.

The disparity in views among the hiring managers can lead to an absence of clarity in communication. It can arise from various situations right from being able to decide on which candidate to hire to when to close the offer. Ideally, Business Managers prefer interviewing newer candidates till the final week, whereas HR Managers tend to close it early.

Last but not the least reason for holding a role is the Business Manager back-trackking on the role, even after informing the candidate to resign from their existing jobs. This is the worst phase where no Hiring Manager wants to be. However, uncertain Business Units tend to raise a job requirement and close it abruptly without hiring any candidate. This kind of experience affects the brand of the employer. Few firms may extend an offer with different role to retain the candidate. But then, thats the prerogative of few!

As a candidate, it’s hard when you have been waiting for a role and it never reaches you. That’s the risk you need to mitigate while switching jobs. Don’t place all your eggs in one basket. Explore few options before you resign and then zero down on the role. Eliminate employers with fuzzy communication, no matter how much you may want the role or how good it may sound initially! A strong job requirement gets closed as early as possible. This says a lot of about the company culture too. Any employer who creates a ‘Candidate Experience’ during hiring would care for their careers too! Money remains the highest motivator, till you realise the need for values. The deal breaker gets crystal clear when you know whom to trust your career with!

Wishing you a great career ahead!

If you have any HR Query or any query on Future of Work, please write to me in here. Looking forward to learn more while finding solutions for you.

Nabomita is the Founder to Nabomita.com. She is the Top 100 Women Achiever Awardee, awarded by Government of India , TEDx Speaker, Quoted on ForbesUS, one of the Top 20 HR Influencer in Social Media as declared by SHRM India and one among the Top 100 Technology Influencer in India. Connect with her on @nabomita_smiles , Facebook Page and Google+

How would you deal with Substance Abuse by your Co-Founder

I run a small, IT Firm, rather a startup. We do not have an official HR department. Just me and one other person in the office. I hired a friend of mine about a year ago. I know this was a bad idea. Things have been going fine until she relapsed. This was first time in 2 years, she had been on the up and up. She almost died from a heroine overdose, and they were able to bring her back. My question is, what do I do. Obviously we are a drug free work place. To be honest she didn’t tell her boss about the overdose, but the friend in me, she had known for over a decade. Plus, would this fall under the Substance abuse at work? I don’t want to make her life harder than it needs to be, but I also know that I have a duty to my clients. So confused!

First and foremost kudos to you for taking care of the person involved and getting her the right kind of medical support. Please ensure she gets every care and counselling that she may need to claim her strength back .

How much of a work have you allocated to her? Is that crucial ? Would you be able to manage it on your own ? Would it be possible to train someone to manage her area of work till she is recuperating?

Please mitigate every risk at work and ensure you leave no thread open. Do calculate the cost you may have to incur during this. The more you prepare meticulously, the better you would be able to deal with it.

Now let’s focus on the issue at your startup. It needs an HR Department as early as possible. Please hire an HR consultant and design a Code of Conduct along with every policy manual. Clearly define every defect and its repercussions. Point out the steps to be followed in case there is any non-adherence. Please maintain a zero tolerance to every non-adherence. It doesn’t need you a big team to put Code of Conduct in place. You can start framing it, even if you continue to remain a small startup. Please include guidelines such as the one mentioned in here!

“To work effectively, all of us need a healthy and safe work environment. All forms of substance abuse as well as the use or distribution of drugs and alcohol while at work is prohibited. Unless required as part of your role (for instance for security personnel where deemed necessary), possession and / or use of weapons / firearms or ammunition while on business of the Company is prohibited. All of us should be safe at our place of work. Should you observe any unsafe situations at work, please reach out to the Helpline. “

You work with clients who might be trusting you now, but can ask for an audit at any point of time. Hence, tie up with any back ground verification firm and get every detail checked and validated, including Police and Medical clearance. The more you keep yourself closer to the rules, the better you will sleep at night!

As for your friend, please let her regain strength and wait till she is free of every substance abuse. Please remember it is not about you or your company, but she and her entire career. If you have been her friend for a decade, you are the best person to help her out. In case she is ready for a rehab, please consider one. Every addiction have a treatment. Please consider signing her up for one. Explain a strict action now will save her life. I am sure, you are the best judge on how to convince her. Wish you all the best!

If you have any HR Query or any query on Future of Work, please write to me in here. Looking forward to learn more while finding solutions for you.

Nabomita is the Founder to Nabomita.com. She is the Top 100 Women Achiever Awardee, awarded by Government of India , TEDx Speaker, Quoted on ForbesUS, one of the Top 20 HR Influencer in Social Media as declared by SHRM India and one among the Top 100 Technology Influencer in India. Connect with her on @nabomita_smiles , Facebook Page and Google+

Out of these 3 Job offers, which one should I choose?

“I’m currently at a crossroads between 3 job options and don’t know what to do! I’m working as an HR Coordinator in a top pharmaceutical company making pretty decent money for the role. However the role is a temp position and I want a permanent role with benefits. There will be a recruitment opening up within the next two months and I’m thinking of applying but I’m not too interested in recruitment, I have done it before and I would do it again but I would prefer something more diverse. The only reason I am considering applying is because I love the company I currently work for and would probably get a small bump in compensation. A full time role at my current company would also come with X amount, a year in tuition reimbursement which I want since I want to do my master’s degree. 

My second option is Employee Relations Analyst which would pay what I’m currently making but it’s 30 minutes longer of a commute and X/2 amount a year max in tuition reimbuirsement. This position seems interesting since I am very interested in ER but I don’t know if analysing data all day is what I would enjoy doing.

Lastly, the third option is an HR Associate role at a Forbes 10 company which pays 9,000 less than what I’m currently making but they pay 100% for your health insurance, comes with bonus and has unlimited tuition reimbursement. However the role would be supporting one other person in HR, it would only be 2 people in that particular office which seems ok but I’m concerned about future room for advancement. However, this would include ER, benefit administration, and more of a generalist role since I would be dealing with many aspects of HR which I like.

I don’t know which to choose or proceed with, recruitment role which I’m not too excited about but good pay and good benefits at the company I’m with, the ER analyst role which I’m sort of excited about and make the same as I’m doing now but longer commute, or work for a REALLY good company making 9,000 less with amazing benefits and an HR Team of two??

I have been in HR for 3 years and want to be sure the next role will be a good stepping stone into my career.” 

The choices are clear. Every role offers an option that can be easily compared to the other. However, the choice made now will define the future. It’s not merely about the next few years of employment, but also funding the Post Graduate Degree.

Even though the first option offers you the greatest salary, it is evident from your words that you don’t wish to work in Recruitment. Hence it doesn’t make any sense to consider that.

It seems evident that you wish to take up the second option. The longer commute and half the salary offered in comparison to the first employer doesn’t pose a problem as you want to work as ER. However, if you fail to enjoy that role, this choice might completely backfire! On the top, any cap on the tuition reimbursement needs to be considered very strongly, as it would increase the monetary burden at your end!

Salary as a parameter can be considered only for a short term. In case of the long term, it’s all about the brand and the support for the education. The job offer accepted now, needs to be the stepping stone for a better job placement once you receive the Post Graduation Degree. Hence, the third option with the Forbes 10 Company remains the best option.

Every brand brings in a professional exposure along with a standard environment, which frames the maturity and efficiency. You have worked for last three years, you are in the right stage to groom and optimise your potential further. You will gain an access to a great work environment, the alumni, and live the joy of contributing to the company’s success!

Even though you are doubtful about your growth in this role, it still is a better offer as it will pay unlimited tuition reimbursement! The 9000 less in the pay won’t matter for long , as they offer a bonus, which might take care of the deficit! The growth factor might not pose a question after the Post Graduation, as you will have the choice to look for a change.

A strong brand with a Generalist Role, would offer you a sound experience to land the next best job that you apply for. On the top, you won’t have any Education loan. I guess this seals the deal offering the best of both the worlds.

Rest I leave it for you to decide ! May the best job find you. Good luck !

If you have any HR Query or any query on Future of Work, please write to me in here. Looking forward to learn more while finding solutions for you.

Nabomita is the Founder to Nabomita.com. She is the Top 100 Women Achiever Awardee, awarded by Government of India , TEDx Speaker, Quoted on ForbesUS, one of the Top 20 HR Influencer in Social Media as declared by SHRM India and one among the Top 100 Technology Influencer in India. Connect with her on @nabomita_smiles , Facebook Page and Google+

An Odd task of preparing a Compensation Report for a small firm

“I’m the HR Executive to a small to mid-sized firm. I get asked a lot of odd tasks. Today topped the cake.

Management decided full time employees are taking way too many of their paid sick days. They also wanted to know the pay, benefits, down to every incentives offered to such talent bands. I suppose they want to be armed with some information regarding what other employers in the area offer. So they have me cold-calling Companies, consultancies and other employers with similar talent pool to get a consensus. 

It’s been pretty difficult getting this information, which is pretty much confidential. I was wondering what your opinions were on this task in general, is it really useful to them to know what other employers are offering? Is there another way I could go about getting this type of information?”

Congratulations on this initiative. No matter how odd this task may sound, it will empower you with valuable information with regards to compensation and benefits. Let this be your very first Compensation Benchmark activity at a small and a manageable scale!

To begin with there are reports on Compensation with bands and designation for every sector published by Aon Hewitt, Mercer to name a few. Top firms such as Willis Towers Watson and Michael Page can offer insights on the design. But then, these reports are costly. A salary survey would offer a comparative data on where the pay structure within your firm lies. Glass door and Payscale would offer you a broad over view to the pay range . If you research enough in the comment section for each firm you might be able to even gauge how far the benefits implemented. Job advertised on LinkedIn Monster , Naukri and IIM Jobs can share more data on the existing opening.

Segregate the data for every band, level, and designation in your firm and compare it to what your competitors are paying. Stay focussed on your region unless you have a Pan-Indian presence or hire out-station candidates. Factor in the education level and experience in years required to deliver the job. The standard of living for the cities where your firm have a presence needs to be considered.

Once you have your report ready, validate it within your HR network. Confidentiality is important, hence respect someone’s choice of not responding to you. You may try and validate the data through the employees to the firms in your sector.

Once you have every single data validated by at least 3-5 individuals from each firms, you should be good to present the report to the Management Team at your firm.

Be prepare with questions on valid the data is and how do you make it relevant within your firm. Prepare a plan to suggest the changes that needs to be made to optimise your current pay structure and benefits. Suggest a few measures to be taken during implementing the new plan. In case you are not completely aware of the Minimax calculation , consider involving an external consultant or an expert. Wish you all the best !

If you have any HR Query or any query on Future of Work, please write to me in here. Looking forward to learn more while finding solutions for you.

Nabomita is the Founder to Nabomita.com. She is the Top 100 Women Achiever Awardee, awarded by Government of India , TEDx Speaker, Quoted on ForbesUS, one of the Top 20 HR Influencer in Social Media as declared by SHRM India and one among the Top 100 Technology Influencer in India. Connect with her on @nabomita_smiles , Facebook Page and Google+

Engaging gender equality for organisational success

On 18th March 2017 , Global Workforce Management organised HR Roundtable at SP Jain Global School of Management on ‘Engaging gender equality for organisational success’. The event was graced with HR Leaders from top firms, addressing the burning questions.

The discussion was divided into two panels with ‘Engaging Men to drive Diversity’ and ‘Putting women on the driver’s seat’. Interestingly, the focus was not just into framing women friendly workplace policies but also creating a safe conducive environment for them to work. In the wake of incidents such as Uber and The Viral Fever, deeper questions arise beyond merely creating an ICC or PoSH Committee!

When we run the programs of hiring women in great numbers are we looking at it as an event or are we backing up with the supporting actions too? Such as a question was asked by Brillian Head of HR Times Centre for Learning to Anirudh Khekale , Group Director HR Emerson Process management India , where a huge number of women were recently hired, “What would be the workforce management plan when all these women take 6 months maternity leave?” Interestingly, Anirudh responded, “We have already accounted that, which is why we went ahead and hired them. Inclusion doesn’t stem from a policy but your constant Leadership through every situation.” For a large organisation, it could be easy to arrange different formats of work including Telecommute and a greater talent pool to re-distribute the work till the women workforce resumes office. For the smaller organisation, which wants to count this as a cost they can’t bear, the choice remains on finding a way out. An interesting point on this was raised by Surabhi Mittal, CHRO Lanxess , “What will such firms do when ‘Maternity leave‘ gets redefined to ‘Parental leaves’ and men start availing them too. Will they stop hiring men as well?” Nipa Modi, Director Secure your Credential, said ‘Right at the interview when we ask a woman if she is married, incase she is, if she planning for a baby, creates the inequality. In India it is still legal to ask such questions. Hence we instil fear in the minds of a potential talent long before we hire them!”

Anirudh Khekale , Group Director HR Emerson Process management India raised a question on what an individual can do to create a balanced environment? His question hits that right note at a point of time we are creating 33% reservation for women to ensure inclusivity. Are creating roles for women enough? Would designing policies keep women back? The diversity programs to increase the number of women in the organisation across the continuum is creating balance of power through balance of choices.

My question is how far would balance be created unless the basic safety isn’t restored? When we have cases like The Viral Fever, with the owner to the firm announcing he has the best of legal firms to his support, what is the message we are sending to the world at large? Is it the Predator who threatens the safety or is it the protection that he receives from the power centres supporting him? What will happen if a predator becomes as vulnerable as the survivor? What happens when his social clout is gone? We had few very brave men coming up to support and strengthen all those 50 women helping them to voice their ordeals. No matter how much we applaud these men, it will never be enough! It took them months to convince the women to speak up. When they had started the effort they never knew if it will ever, see the light of the day! Yet they continued. There is still not enough light at the end of the tunnel and no one knows how long will it take before the women finds justice! Most of these men will remain anonymous to support more such women out of such situations. Hence, they don’t stand to get any reward, let alone any recognition of their effort! Advocate Rizwan Siddiquee set the course right with lodging an FIR . All these men are sending one strong message, that there is help available if the women can reach out to them!

But is that enough? What exactly will bring in gender equality at workplaces? Will those programs on Diversity succeed, till safety is restored? What does it takes to let a woman in an organisation voice a concern without any fear that questions her livelihood or the stigma? Can we have enough employers who are ready to hire these talented women, in case they contest and lose their jobs? If we can provide continuity in employment will that strengthen more voices to speak up? When we deal with such complaints , can we ensure enough confidentiality in the processes? There would be no stigma, if we can learn to respect the strength these women show! Finally, can we have men shattering the Bro-code to strengthen these women? What does it take for the men in companies like Uber and TVF or men around any predator to speak up? Would covering up an indecent behaviour with a statement such as ‘Duniya hain, hota hain” [it’s normal for such things to happen] look good, when it hits the news paper? No lies remain hidden for long, no crime unknown. Today, a news no longer needs a media house, to shake up the world. What trends of the social media hits the headline like a wildfire. Exposing misdeeds breed trust. Once a complaint hits the headline, it leaves no room to hide. If a bunch of anonymous men can bring in such a big difference for Uber and TVF, shouldn’t the power centres around the predator find it easy? Real inclusivity is when men show up to foster and safeguard diversity!

If you have any HR Query or any query on Future of Work, please contact me . Looking forward to learn more while finding solutions for you. This have been re-blogged with permission from CSR India where it was originally published, with me as its Guest Author.

Nabomita is the Founder to Nabomita.com. She is the Top 100 Women Achiever Awardee, awarded by Government of India , TEDx Speaker, Quoted on ForbesUS, one of the Top 20 HR Influencer in Social Media as declared by SHRM India and one among the Top 100 Technology Influencer in India. Connect with her on @nabomita_smiles , Facebook Page and Google+

Managing Exit: Withdrawing a verbal resignation

“I own a midsize company and today I had a senior staff member resign to me as soon as he came in. I accepted his resignation and asked him to hold tight as I gathered my thoughts on next steps. 2 hours later he said he was withdrawing his resignation.

Can I accept his verbal resignation? I don’t want to keep him around any more as he explained to me that it was time for him to move on and that he felt it was time for a change. 

I think something happened to his other opportunity and is trying to backtrack. I’m certain he will keep looking for another job anyway.”

What would you do if you were caught up in a similar situation? It’s easy to decide an yes or no , but let’s look into the process , before you decide.

A resignation requires the submission in writing. It needs to be clearly stated why the resignation have been tendered. The employer needs to then start processing the conversation. First of all, as soon as you receive a resignation, please issue a letter sharing the resignation have been received and it is under due consideration.

Then arrange for a detailed discussion with the resignee and your HR Team. You may or may not include the reporting manager depending on the request of the resignee. Often the employee submitting such a request has some grievances which needs to be heard in isolation. Incase the employee is fine, organise a meeting with the Reporting Manager and the HR Business Partner.

Understand in details, why the employee is resigning and how would the knowledge transfer happen. Make sure the duration for release, transfer or responsibilities and sharing of every information is agreed and signed off.

In case an employee doesn’t want to serve the Notice Period, please share the process. If as an employer you allow them to buy-out , please explain the calculation and the final number that the employee needs to pay.

Once the resignation process has moved to the acceptance stage by the employer, share if you have any implication on resignation withdrawal. Clearly state beyond which point can the resignation still be re-considered. Draw a timeline, such as if the Notice Period is 3 months long, define the period for re-consideration will lats till end of the first month.

Plan your talent accusation during the Notice Period. In case you can’t hire or the employee do not want to serve the notice period allocate the responsibility to a team member and initiate the Knowledge Transfer.

The Exit process on the final day needs to have every area signed off including handover or responsibilities, duties and any Office property assigned to the employee. Seal the process with Release Certificate.

Once you have a rock solid process in place, your employees would know there are little chances of diversions. This kind of an elaborate timeline would allow you to re-think your own decision on releasing the employee. You will be able to weigh every cost of a new hire to training your existing employee. Restructure is easy, when you are sure of the result you want to achieve.

Hence, every room for verbal back tracking will be avoided! Decide for yourself, if you want to release an employee who wanted to resign, or hold on to someone who has realised you are far better than his options? At the end of the day every employee would leave your firm, someday or the other. Its up to you to optimise the talent and the time you have with them!

Recommended: Why should your pay remain secret , Future of work , Open Door 

 

What it takes to build an empowered community

Why were the communities built ? Did someone actually start the trend right in the beginning of time? Or were they formed because human beings are social by nature! We are driven by goals which often echo as a common goal, when like minds come together. A group of people doesn’t form a community till there is a common thread of thoughts, willingness and purpose, that binds them together. Tribes were formed for survival. But each tribe developed an unique culture through the practices, the group involved. In time, communities moved beyond every boundaries and semantics with the internet changing the game. Online portals were initially formed for interest , then moved to need , hence emerged the ‘Community of Product’ and ‘Community of Practices’. When millions of people joined in to contribute to a discussion, the term ‘Crowdsource’ lost itself to the value created. Contributions driven by the need to help others, even without an identity which became an order of the day. Offline communities had a purpose to serve with the members interacting through regular meet-ups. Corporates initially used communities to build loyal consumers but moved to social and green world, responding to the environmental changes. Are there any other pattern through which communities have evolved? Let’s find out what builds a community!

On 4th of March The Mentorprenuers organised Women Power 2nd Edition at IIT Bombay. I feel honoured to share that I was invited to moderate the panel on ‘Growth Hacking in Business: Building Empowered Community. The speakers to my panel were Revathi Roy, Founder DeeDee and Vira cabs, Riddhi Doshi Founder Lajja, Neha Kare Founder UniMO and Neha Aggarwal Community Outreach Baby Chakra.

It was interesting to note how these offline and online communities were formed and why. Revathi Roy shared, she loved to drive and felt the need of women drivers even when it was unheard of. Hence, her service started way back in 2007, making her a pioneer. She built the community of close knit drivers who came from the social background with little and bare minimum income. For her it was an ordeal to convince them and then train. However, looking back she holds a numero uno position with the largest numbers of trained and professional women drivers. She went through challenge when the policy on driving license was suddenly changed last year. But then, she used it to turn the tide for the best. She used the gold mine of the trained drivers to build Hey Didi or Deedee as it is called now. Here she offers last mile delivery with the same women drivers. She offered everyone a two-wheeler on a loan with no collaterals attached. The amount was deducted from their salaries. In case you are wondering why this service is important, well we have cases where the delivery boys were either attacked or attacked the lone living women! Here’s an advertisement to support the point on how such women drivers and last mile delivery by women is making the world safe!

 

Next we had Riddhi Doshi , sharing why she built Lajja. For her it was important women speak up about the sexual issues that are shunned. She built Lajja where women feel safe to speak up and have the experts to guide them. It was very brave of her, given the conservative background she had. But then, that became the driving force why she was determined to build a community where women finds a voice!

Neha Kare, founder UniMo had a similar story to share on why she built the community which includes both the online and the offline model. She felt the need for the community of Mothers who required a support system with their peers to remain intellectually and emotionally active. Motherhood often comes with women being drained of every attention towards themselves. Hence, Neha created this million strong group where Women come forward to find ‘Me-Time’ through activities such as Bappa-thon where they cleaned up the sea-beaches a day after the idols were immersed in water. Her activities are directed towards building a responsible system where Mothers can use their time to change the world.

Neha Aggarwal, shared Baby Chakra was built purely to provide a support to the Mothers who look up on the internet for every information , products and services for their babies. In today’s world with nuclear families growing by manifolds, the mothers rarely find anyone who can guide them with exact information, right when they need it! Hence the online portal with the live discussion forums and experts answering them remains the best solution.