Rebel Human Resources Podcast

Episode 28: Give your Employees C.R.A.P. with Jeff Kortes

January 26, 2021 Kyle Roed / Jeff Kortes Season 1 Episode 28
Rebel Human Resources Podcast
Episode 28: Give your Employees C.R.A.P. with Jeff Kortes
Chapters
Rebel Human Resources Podcast
Episode 28: Give your Employees C.R.A.P. with Jeff Kortes
Jan 26, 2021 Season 1 Episode 28
Kyle Roed / Jeff Kortes

Good employees are the lifeblood of a successful organization. What’s your plan for keeping your best talent?

Join Kyle Roed as he speaks with Jeff Kortes, Founder of Human Asset Management LLC.  They cover the topics of retention, leadership, and making sure you aren't left in the dust by your employees.  

About Jeff: 

My work as an employee retention speaker, author and trainer springs from 30 years’ experience in human resources and labor relations. I’ve seen the good, the bad, and the downright unbelievable in how employers treat their workers. I’ve worked alongside some great people and, all too often, seen great people walk out the door.

What’s the key to employee retention? Not just good pay, to be sure. Employees need to feel valued, validated and challenged. An annual “Employee Appreciation Luncheon” won’t cut it. You need an ongoing, systematic approach that involves every level of management … with full buy-in from those managers.

My knowledge comes from hard-earned experience. I dealt with a workplace fatality as a 25-year-old HR manager. I’ve closed three facilities, navigated a strike, and worked through a corporate buyout. Put together, I've probably witnessed more turmoil than 10 HR people combined. My book “Welcome to Dodge” details the harrowing, the weird, and the inexplicable from those years in the personnel trenches.

I enjoy seeing leaders grow into “Great Bosses” whom employees appreciate and respect. Focused, energized leadership can turn organizations into employee retention “magnets.” My presentations, books and blog posts provide guidance; my training and consulting works directly with organizations to implement strategies and processes for retaining top talent.

Tired of seeing good employees leave to work elsewhere? Let’s talk about transforming your organization into a place where workers want to stay, not escape. E-mail me at jeff@humanassetmgt.com, or visit www.jeffkortes.com for more details.

Rebel HR is a podcast for HR professionals and leaders of people who are ready to make some disruption in the world of work.


We'll be discussing topics that are disruptive to the world of work and talk about new and different ways to approach solving those problems.

Follow Rebel HR Podcast at:

www.rebelhumanresources.com
https://twitter.com/rebelhrguy
https://www.facebook.com/rebelhrpodcast
www.kyleroed.com
https://www.linkedin.com/in/kyle-roed/

Rebel ON, HR Rebels!  

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/rebelhumanresources)

Show Notes Transcript

Good employees are the lifeblood of a successful organization. What’s your plan for keeping your best talent?

Join Kyle Roed as he speaks with Jeff Kortes, Founder of Human Asset Management LLC.  They cover the topics of retention, leadership, and making sure you aren't left in the dust by your employees.  

About Jeff: 

My work as an employee retention speaker, author and trainer springs from 30 years’ experience in human resources and labor relations. I’ve seen the good, the bad, and the downright unbelievable in how employers treat their workers. I’ve worked alongside some great people and, all too often, seen great people walk out the door.

What’s the key to employee retention? Not just good pay, to be sure. Employees need to feel valued, validated and challenged. An annual “Employee Appreciation Luncheon” won’t cut it. You need an ongoing, systematic approach that involves every level of management … with full buy-in from those managers.

My knowledge comes from hard-earned experience. I dealt with a workplace fatality as a 25-year-old HR manager. I’ve closed three facilities, navigated a strike, and worked through a corporate buyout. Put together, I've probably witnessed more turmoil than 10 HR people combined. My book “Welcome to Dodge” details the harrowing, the weird, and the inexplicable from those years in the personnel trenches.

I enjoy seeing leaders grow into “Great Bosses” whom employees appreciate and respect. Focused, energized leadership can turn organizations into employee retention “magnets.” My presentations, books and blog posts provide guidance; my training and consulting works directly with organizations to implement strategies and processes for retaining top talent.

Tired of seeing good employees leave to work elsewhere? Let’s talk about transforming your organization into a place where workers want to stay, not escape. E-mail me at jeff@humanassetmgt.com, or visit www.jeffkortes.com for more details.

Rebel HR is a podcast for HR professionals and leaders of people who are ready to make some disruption in the world of work.


We'll be discussing topics that are disruptive to the world of work and talk about new and different ways to approach solving those problems.

Follow Rebel HR Podcast at:

www.rebelhumanresources.com
https://twitter.com/rebelhrguy
https://www.facebook.com/rebelhrpodcast
www.kyleroed.com
https://www.linkedin.com/in/kyle-roed/

Rebel ON, HR Rebels!  

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/rebelhumanresources)

Jeff Kortes:

We are going to see a wave when things start to get back to normal. Because people are like elephants, they remember how they were treated. And what's going to happen is they're going to remember how their Boston talked to them. The boss just kind of disappeared was missing an action. And they're gonna say, There's got to be better out there.

Kyle Roed:

This is the rebel HR podcast. If you're a professional looking for innovative, thought provoking information in the world of human resources, this is the right podcast for you. All right, Rebel human resources, listeners, I'm extremely excited to introduce you to our guest today, Jeff courtice. Jeff has been an influential speaker in my life personally, and I'm excited to share some of his content with all of you. He's an employee retention speaker and employee loyalty expert, and he likes to teach you how to give your employees crap. Welcome to the show, Jeff.

Jeff Kortes:

Hey, it's great to be here. Yeah, I always love to talk to people about how to give employees caring, respect, appreciation, and praise. I mean, it's it's the element that really drives employee retention and employee loyalty. And the more crap you give your people, the better off they are.

Kyle Roed:

So for those not taking notes, crap stands for caring respect, appreciation and praise.

Jeff Kortes:

Yeah, you better see it again. Because otherwise, people say, Why do you? Why would you give your your employees crap? Right.

Kyle Roed:

Right. Right. Well, you know, I work in manufacturing, so I, we give a lot of crap here. But it still speaks to me.

Jeff Kortes:

Okay, well, and I spent time in manufacturing, construction, even in high tech, and the element of, of caring, respect, appreciation and praise is necessary in every business. I mean, I, you know, I've got I've got two sons that are in health care. Both are doctors, and they talk about the fact that there's not enough of it, you know, and people thrive on it.

Kyle Roed:

Absolutely, so. So tell me a little bit more about about kind of your organization, and what what prompted you to start to focus on, on on crap?

Jeff Kortes:

Well, I spent 25 years in human resources. And when I was 50, I decided that, you know, I had enough I got downsized, got a great package, and said, You know, I want to do something differently. And I and I started a search firm, because I was never impressed with a lot of search firms that I work with, and very successful. And one of my colleague of mine said, Well, why don't you start speaking about recruitment. And then we started talking, and then I, I realized, I knew a lot about employee retention and loyalty because of the industries that work with and I started, I started speaking on employee retention and loyalty. And one day, I'm driving down, I 94, heading east to Detroit, to speak at the Chrysler Corporation. And I used all these, you know, these elements, and I like praise, attention or appreciation. And all of a sudden dawned on me crap. And I rolled it out at Chrysler. And I said, you know, you got to give your employees crap. And the meaning planet, her jaw just dropped. And one guy in the back of the audience says, Well, we do plenty of that at Chrysler. And I thought on why I stepped in it. But anyway, I started talking about caring, respect, appreciation and praise. And what happened was, is is at the very end, one of the vice presidents got up and said, Look, he says, if you don't remember anything, you want to give your employees crap. And I realized that it was a fun way to talk about a very serious topic. And then I started talking more and more on employee retention. And that's how things evolved. I mean, I still do search work. I do a lot of search work in the manufacturing area. But I realized because of the industries I'd worked in, that I knew a lot about employee retention and loyalty. And I started talking on it, refine my skills on the platform, and before I know it, now, if you type in employee retention speaker I'm the number one on Google.

Kyle Roed:

There you go. Great headline.

Jeff Kortes:

Yeah, no, I mean it and I mean, I never thought it would would happen but The more I work with organizations, the more I've helped organizations, I realized that this was this is this is my niche. And it's really kind of about culture. But I focus because employee retention and loyalty is where the money is for organizations, and where the need is. That's what I focus on. I do I do a deep dive into crap is what I tell people.

Kyle Roed:

Yeah, but what a critical, you know, what a critical thing to focus on, especially in in, you know, the 2020, post 2020 era, where, you know, if you aren't caring, respecting, appreciating and praising your employees, through one of the more challenging periods that we can recall, you're gonna set yourself up for some potentially painful time down the road.

Jeff Kortes:

I would agree. And I think the other thing is, is it's not even, it's not even so much about the pain that organizations experience, people are experiencing a lot of pain right now. And they need crap. They need more crap than they've ever had. And, you know, that caring and that appreciation that praise. They need it more than they've ever needed it before. Because I mean, you know, we, we talk about all mental health issues, we, we, we talk about the isolation, it's tough. And if you're not giving your people crap, you're right. To your point, you're setting yourself up for a lot of turnover when this thing starts to normalize. But besides that, your people need you. Right?

Kyle Roed:

Yeah, you know, so I want to explore that a little bit more. You know, a lot of times as a, as an HR practitioner, or as business leaders, we think about people being loyal or not. And there's a, you know, there's a stigma for, you know, what we would call job hoppers and that sort of thing. So, why don't you? Why don't we talk a little bit about how crap can can drive loyalty? And how loyalty, you know, really is kind of goes both ways?

Jeff Kortes:

Well, you know, I believe that companies have killed employee loyalty, not, not employees. And when I say that to a lot of leaders in organizations, you can tell them getting in, you can see them getting uncomfortable, but people want to be loyal. If you show them that you care. You respect them, you give them appreciation and praise, people will stick around. It's not that people want to leave. I mean, there's other things like growth and communication and you know, other things that I I talk about, you know, do a plug for my book, called, you know, give your employees crap and seven other secrets to employee retention. There's other things that are involved. But caring, respect, appreciation, and praise is really the linchpin. And if you're doing that people are loyal. People are incredibly loyal. I mean, I see it because I'm a headhunter. I mean, I tell people who better to talk about employee loyalty than somebody who steals talent for a living. And what I find is that companies kill employee loyalty. It's not that people don't want to be loyal.

Unknown:

I guess the other the other area that I hear a lot of noise around related to the loyalty is this perception that there's, there's a lack of loyalty in certain generations. Have you found that to be true? Or is it more related to an employer's culture?

Jeff Kortes:

Actually, you know, it's it's not even so much. Anecdotally, what I found is, but statistically, when you analyze the figures and my young colleague that I speak with all the time on a millennial topic, he talks about the fact that millennials are no less loyal than other groups of people. But they see a few people that are job hoppers, and they draw the conclusion that they're all job hoppers. And that's not the case. I mean, I I've placed people as a head on her in organizations, and we're talking for five, six years later, they're still there in the in the mindset is, if I place a millennial, they're going to be gone in 18 months. It depends on the organization. And I'm blessed that I've got clients that not only are they good search clients, but they give their employees crap. So people come and they stay and they grow and they involved with the organization. So I don't think it's, again, the statistics say I'm right. And anecdotally, what I see is, if you treat people, right, they are not going to leave.

Kyle Roed:

Absolutely. Yeah. And I think it's a, you know, give them a reason to stay, don't give him a reason to leave kind of a kind of an upright,

Jeff Kortes:

right? Well, we, you know, I use a term called a mohai, a moment of high influence. leaders, you know, somebody's boss, does something that so angers an employee, that they go home, they crank up the computer, go into one of the job boards, put the resume up, you know, I, it's a moment of high influence. And if supervisors are aware of what those things are, that they're doing, they can avoid them. And it's part of just being a great boss. I mean, you know, if you're a great boss, moments of high influence don't occur. Or even if the organization of senior leadership does a moment of high influence, and does something that anger somebody, to the average employee, their immediate boss is the organization. And they can do a tremendous, they can do a tremendous amount to all say buffer, things that happen from a senior level. Because who do you work for? Who do you see every day? It's your boss. And if your boss is giving you crap, you got a pretty good gig. Right?

Unknown:

Yeah, I think it's a great point in in coming from your perspective, you know, you, you know, the talent acquisition game inside now. Those are the people you want the ones that, you know, they had a bad interaction. Oh, yeah. They're motivated. They're, you know, there's there's some there's some, some buying signals there on the job you're selling. Right, right. Yeah, no,

Jeff Kortes:

I mean, we love it. My recruiter and I, when we call in an organization and we start talking, we say, well, what's your boss like? And we get this pause. We know, there's something wrong with it. Well, talk to me about your boss, we asked him. And we also realized they were hot. Yeah. And in my case, I have a very small list of clients. And I know the bosses. I know, the hiring managers, and then we're able to talk to them about the hiring managers that he goes to work for. And all of a sudden, they say, yeah, I'm interested, huh? Yeah. You just got to listen. Because, you know, there are a lot of lousy bosses out there. I don't know if you've ever heard that. stat. But they say that 75% of the people in this country say the worst thing about their job is their boss.

Kyle Roed:

I mean, that's scary. That's shocking. That's sad.

Jeff Kortes:

That's sad. It's sad, sad, you know, but from a soul. When I work with organizations on employee retention, I tell supervisors, I said Your job is to be in that 25%. Because if you're in that 25%, not only will people stay, they'll walk through walls for you. Right. And there's a difference between employee retention and loyalty. retention is when people stay loyalty is when they'll stay. And they'll follow you, voluntarily.

Kyle Roed:

Now, I love that. It made me feel a lot better knowing that we only have to be better, you know, 25% of

Jeff Kortes:

you don't have to be that great. It's like the if you've heard the one about the the Boy Scouts in the woods, in the in the bear, right? You know, right. The one guy says, he's the bear is gonna catch us. And the other guy says, No, he says, as long as I'm faster than you I'm in good shape. Yeah. I mean, that's, that's, that's exactly it. I mean, you've heard you've heard that one before. So

Kyle Roed:

yeah, yeah, that's what that's what HR is. It's just, uh, you know, trying to not be the slowest person running away from the

Jeff Kortes:

scary.

Kyle Roed:

We aspire to a little bit higher.

Jeff Kortes:

Oh, I hope so.

Kyle Roed:

But it does make me feel a little bit better. Oh,

Unknown:

I think your point is well taken. And you know, it's funny because I haven't, I haven't actively look for a job in yours. I've had a job change, but it was, you know, it was a headhunter that

Kyle Roed:

outreach and I may have had a moment of high influence that occurred In a former life,

Unknown:

but at the end of the day, if I leave work, and I am really, I'm just over it, all I have to do is open up my Gmail, and I get like, I get like six job alerts a day, from zip recruiter or some other, you know, job site aggregator that just spams my email. But if one of these days I have a bad day, and I just open up the email, there's one right there.

Jeff Kortes:

What have I influence? Yeah.

Kyle Roed:

I mean, it's there. And I tell that to I tell that to managers who think you know, that, you know, the people are easily replaceable? Well, not really, no, but they're really easy to lose. Exactly. And, and, and that's just the new world we live in. So if you're not, if you're not actively working on this stuff, you are gonna, you're gonna see people flee. I mean, it's just so easy even in, even in post COVID world.

Jeff Kortes:

Oh, they're still you know, people. Yeah,

Unknown:

yeah. And especially the companies that didn't take care of their employees. Yeah, or didn't manage it, you know, in a way that was empathetic and caring and respectful. And, you know, all of the elements of crap, I think, yeah, it's, we need it now more than ever,

Jeff Kortes:

we are going to see a wave, when things start to get back to normal. Because people are like elephants, they remember how they were treated. And what's going to happen is, they're going to remember how their Boston talked to them, the boss just kind of disappeared was missing an action. And they're gonna say, There's got to be better out there. And they'll go on to the job board. And it'll be gone in 60 days. And I think that's the things that that organizations don't realize, is, is going on there. They're planting the seeds for a disaster down the road.

Kyle Roed:

Right? Yeah, it's been, you know, that's been one of the biggest challenges. It's that balancing act between giving good direction, and being empathetic, being flexible, but not being so flexible, that you lose capability to get things done. And then the other, I think the other big issue that a lot of us are gonna faces, we have essential and flexible workers working together. So you know, if we, if we aren't managing, working from home and flexibility in some of these things, appropriately, there's going to be a division between Oh, there is

Jeff Kortes:

I've got several manufacturing clients. And in one particular case, the managers who are it's funny, the leaders who are working out of their house, who are non essential, I put that in air quotes. And people on the manufacturing floor, they are cranking out product, while these managers were talking on the, on the phone before the conversation with their their weekly staff meeting, and talking about how great it is to, you know, be able to throw the laundry in, you know, and in. When I take a break during lunch, you know, I can extend it a little bit and mow the lawn and things like that. Well, word got out that that discussion had taken place. And the divide that it started to create with the people on the shop floor. And these people was tremendous. And to the credit of the general manager, who actually happened to be a former boss of mine. So I've trained him well. He, he jumped in and said, Look, people, he says you're not working out of the house, because so that you can, so it makes it easy for you, you know, you're still doing a job. But fortunately, as a senior leader, he dealt with the issue, because he recognized that the divide could destroy his culture. And he dealt with it, but I see that in a lot of places, they're not dealing with it. And you're going to see that cultural divide, you're going to see that animosity between, I'll say, in some ways, a lot of leaders and people that may even work for them. It's scary. You know, it's it's an amazing, it's amazing situation that I run into, and I mean, some places are able to deal with it. Other places are not. But that's where you really got to step up and say, I've got to talk to my people. I got to talk to my leaders and explain to them that they are really truly leaders. And part of that is if you're thinking something Need to watch what you say. But you know, if stupidity was illegal, a lot of people would be in jail. And

Kyle Roed:

I know we've all had that situation where, you know, we said that thing, and we wish we could put it back.

Jeff Kortes:

Yeah. Well, you know, again, these are all managers talking amongst each other. And, and this this, this general manager, call me is Jeffrey's you're not gonna believe this, you know, he started unloading on me, because like I said, he I'd worked for this guy earlier in my career, and, and he says, What's with these people? Yeah. He was, you know, he was just kind of in shock. You know, and I find myself in that role a lot. I mean, talking with clients, because, you know, like a general manager, who can the general manager talk to, or even the HR people can the HR people talk to? So they'll call me and say, Jeff, I got this going on. What do you think? Right. It's kind of an interesting situation. Yeah, I

Unknown:

mean, I think that's, you know, that is part of the reason that we started this podcast is to, you know, have a little bit of an outlet and connection with other HR professionals, because a lot of times it's, it's isolate. And, and, and it's, it's hard, you're dealing with emotional topics, and, and when emotions get high, things get said. You know, I think the other piece there too, is it's like, okay, so you're gonna say something stupid at some point in your life. It is just the way it is. We're all human. Right? Right. But if you say it, and you don't have remorse for it, and you don't circle back and apologize to somebody for something that maybe popped out that you didn't mean to pop out, and like you weren't like, human about it.

Jeff Kortes:

Right. Agree. I agree. I made it worse. Yeah. I mean, you know, admitting you're wrong is one of the things that builds respect, you know, admitting you're wrong and say, you know, hey, I made a mistake, that builds respect. And if a manager would do that with the people, yeah. You could take a negative and turn it into a positive.

Unknown:

Yeah. And it's, you know, it's I look at it is, it's, it's almost like, it's a factor of integrity, and trust and honesty, you know, if you own it, you know, they might not like that you said it, but you own it. You know, it doesn't mean that they they love it.

Jeff Kortes:

take you a while to dig out of that hole. But yeah, the point is, is Alicia be able to dig out of the hole?

Kyle Roed:

Absolutely. And I think that's the, you know, that's part of the challenge of just dealing with humans in general is, is the fact that, you know, we all have a capacity to, to do things in a really positive way, we also have the capacity to do things in a really negative way. And a lot of it's just the awareness of that, right?

Jeff Kortes:

Ya know, it's funny, because I had a boss, who was a VP of HR at one point, he always said, Jeff, he says, HR would be a great field if we didn't have to deal with people.

Kyle Roed:

Absolutely, yeah. You know, when there's human resource, and my job gets easy and unnecessary. The other the other slant on that I used to have a mentor who shall remain nameless, but the common joke was, you know, HR, we're here to take the H out of HR.

Unknown:

And it was it was tongue in cheek, actually do that. But that was, you know, some that was kind of the perception. When I first started in the career we were, we were kind of the policy police. We were admin. We were the, you know, the Principal Office when things went sideways. Yep. And I don't I don't think that's going to work anymore. What do you think?

Jeff Kortes:

Well, I you know, I mean, I joke about the fact that, you know, and you were you and I were chatting about it before the call. I'm so old, that I remember when we my first job. I was the personnel assistant. Oh, yeah. You know, yeah, I mean, really old school. And then in some ways, it evolved to evolve to employee relations. And I like better human resources. But you know, the name of my firm is human asset management, because I believe that people are assets. And I think that, you know, you you protect your assets, you take care of your assets, you preserve your assets, and I think that's the way organizations need to, to think about things because people are assets and whereas resources you use up Hmm, that's a great point. You know, and again, as always, Then my mindset, I guess, you know, he talked about, you know, the the rebel human resources I was, I'll say I was talking about this stuff 30 years ago, and people looked at me like I was a lunatic. You know, and and I was, I like to think I was ahead of my time, you know?

Unknown:

Yeah. I mean, that's what we're all about here is is, you know, it's that innovation. But you know, a lot of what we talked about it's, it's really just common sense. If you really stop thinking about like, let's, guys, let's not overthink this thing.

Jeff Kortes:

Yep, you will. And I, I use the term I, you know, I and I, and again, I was fortunate, I was blessed. I worked for some great bosses years ago, while I was 25. I had I had a boss of mine, tell me, Jeff, let's forget fancy fads. Let's focus on the fundamentals. And if you keep coming back to the fundamentals, and again, things, you got to grow, and you gotta adapt those things, and they're nuanced. But if you come back to the fundamentals, I mean, yes. In my, my LinkedIn blog, I talked about all this all the time. It's a simple stuff. Yeah. It's just not easy. Yeah, you know, pulling it all together and doing it day in and day out is, is the toughest part. But it's about fundamentals.

Unknown:

Yeah, well, I think, you know, you and I have must have had very similar mentors when we started out, but I distinctly remember, my first job out of college, I had a great mentor, and everybody loved the guy. And he was, you know, he was just just a really logical thinker, and really easy to break down things into simple, easy to understand principles. And one of those was, make sure that the I was in retail at the time, make sure the store looks good. Make sure the shelves are full. and respect, everybody. That's it. That's all we do here.

Jeff Kortes:

And yeah, that was it. I mean, the whole respect thing is, is huge. I mean, now it's one of my my thing is matter of fact, I it's interesting, you know, I just just built a new presentation called respect, it's more than just a song. Because I had clients come to me and say, you know, we talk about caring, respect, appreciation and praise. But you know, can you do a deep dive into respect, and because of several clients, I started doing that, and because oftentimes, people don't want to disrespect people. But they do it by accident. They do stupid stuff, kind of like the, you know, he's managers on the call. And so what happened? Was, is, you know, I said, Okay, you know, what are the elements that really go into respect? on a day to day basis, when you are on the job? How can you demonstrate respect to your co workers, to your people, to your boss? And because respect is, is is just huge, from a standpoint of keeping people.

Unknown:

Yeah, yeah. And I think, you know, it's interesting, the term respect. It can, it can almost have a little bit of a negative connotation as well. Like, I mean, I'll give you an example. So when I, when I, you know, have a robust debate with my wife, and I say, I just wish you would respect my opinion, that doesn't necessarily fly very well. You know, it can be misperceived as like demanding respect. And, you know, I think respect is so much deeper than, you know, just using the word right, it's all about the actions.

Jeff Kortes:

Well, I tell people, it's really about two things. It's about what is your thought process? And what are your actions? You know, I mean, you know, how do you how do you think about how you treat people? And then how do you act? I mean, ultimately, it's about how you act. I mean, because if you act the way you're supposed to and give people respect. You know, you've accomplished a lot. But again, a lot of managers don't realize they're doing things that are disrespecting people. And that's how, again, I had a clients come to me and say, Hey, can you build someone respect simply because of the fact that they had managers? that wanted to respect people, but didn't know how crazy as that might sound? But

Unknown:

yeah, so let's let's, I'm curious to hear and, you know, feel free to share as much as you're comfortable sharing. But, you know, give me an example of like a, something that that you've observed or something you've heard where somebody has kind of unintentionally disrespected somebody, and then how did you? How do you get how do you fix that?

Jeff Kortes:

Well, I think the biggest element that I see with district specters micromanaging. You know, and I talked about this and give your employees crap. And you when I was when I was up at your Sherm chapter is we do things you know, we're over, we're looking over somebody's shoulder, and they're competent, but we send the message that they're not because we're looking at every nitty gritty, little detail. And I mean, and I see that as being one of the biggest things that is, is a way to disrespect people. And I think the only way that a manager can can correct it, is if they get the feeling that they're, they're micromanaging somebody is to ask their people, hey, am I too involved? And that's hard to do. Am I to involve? And then if the person says, Well, yeah, you are. You You got to have you got to have the courage to say, Well, how so? Oftentimes, we get defensive, you know? Yeah. And it will, and you've went through my micromanager checklist, you know, when I when I when I spoke up in your shop chapter is it was designed because a lot of managers don't realize that they're micromanaging until they go through the items that are indicators of micromanagement. And all of a sudden they say, Whoa, I didn't realize, again, they don't want to disrespect somebody, but then they realize that they're micromanaging them. And that sends the message that they don't trust them.

Kyle Roed:

Absolutely, I think it goes, you know, on a broader level, HR, a lot of natural and established HR practices could be perceived as micromanagement. I know, I hear that from time to time. Yep. Things like, you know, wage increase approval processes with, you know, levels and layers of administrative approval required it. You know, there there are there are reasons for that. Very good reasons for that. But, you know, that's one of the things I push back on is, you know, take a look at your policies and workflows and approvals required. And are you sending your leadership team the the message that you don't trust them?

Jeff Kortes:

Yeah, I think that's an important point over are the other one I look at is work rules. Right? We have we have work rules. And I have found that works better. What works better than work rules, is coming up with a list of what I call positive behaviors, you know, talking about the fact that we will, we will be on time for meetings. It's not saying, don't be late. It's saying be on time for meetings, it frames it in a positive perspective, as opposed to being like the police. Right? These are the behaviors we want. As opposed to don't do this and don't do that, you know, then then HR becomes the cop. Yeah, I don't want to be. Right. Exactly.

Unknown:

No, that's great. That's great advice. You know, and I think I think it's such a, it's such a balancing act on the, you know, on that micromanagement front, but as I reflect on interactions that have gone sideways, a lot of times it's, it can it can stem from that micromanagement and and really a feeling of being disrespected, in one way, shape, or form.

Jeff Kortes:

Oh, yeah. And once somebody feels like they're disrespected, it's tough to walk that back. Absolutely. Alright, so

Kyle Roed:

one of the things I want to talk about a little bit because I'm just I'm curious, I understand that you have a new book, here hitting the shelves here called HR horror stories. I know, I don't know how many conversations I have with HR professionals where we go, we should write a book. So is this book

Jeff Kortes:

this is the book? I mean, I would it's it's called HR horror stories, true Tales from the trenches. They're all real stories, and the leadership lessons I learned as a result of, of what took place. And, you know, some things were things that happened to me, as opposed to me doing them or or, or some of them were me doing things, you know, that I didn't do that I should have done that created the horror stories. And, you know, I actually decided to write the book because I thought it would be fun because it's really not in the you know, my you know, my niches the employee retention and loyalty, but I thought about it, you know, this. A lot of employee retention loyalty is driven by how leaders behave. And so I thought, well This would be a compliment to an A. And besides, I thought it would be fun. And I've got, I've got two more stories I've got to put in, and then it's going to be ready to go. And so I'm hoping during the holiday season, I'm going to be able to finish those stories. It's all set up and everything, and then it's good to be ready to go on in. Yeah, hit the, you know, gotta, you know, put it up on Kindle and that sort of thing. I mean, I'm self publishing, so yeah. Cool. Yeah. Well, I

Kyle Roed:

have to check it out. Yeah, makes it we'll make sure that we put that in the show notes. If we if we get a release,

Jeff Kortes:

I'll get your copy.

Unknown:

Yeah, perfect. I love that. I, you know, I I learned so much from, from the stories, you know, and I think that's anybody who is fascinated by human behavior. It's just, it's all about these, these narrative events. And, and a lot of times I learned more from, at least personally from my mistakes than I do, I'm doing something. Right.

Jeff Kortes:

Right. No, mistakes. And when, you know, I mean, when I when I speak, my whole thing is, is I tell tons of stories. The advantage of you know, being my age, okay, put that in air quotes, is advantage being my ages, I've gone through a lot. And so I have, I have a lot of good stories and and people remember stories they learn from stories. And that's my goal, when I speak to a group is, is to help people learn and have people do things as a result of what they've learned, as opposed to saying, Okay, yeah, this, Oh, that's interesting. I want people to take that knowledge and apply it on the job, because that way, they'll be successful. And that, to me, is my success.

Unknown:

Absolutely. So as far as the as far as the horror stories are concerned, give me a flavor of an example of a horror story that you think would be would resonate with our audience?

Jeff Kortes:

Oh, yeah, I'll give you one that it speaks to the employee retention issue, I worked. I was doing a contract job in North Carolina, and I gotta, I gotta go, I was walking down the hall. And my, my assistant said, Jeff, we need you in the plant. And I, I could tell just wish you said it wasn't good. And I ran into the plant, and one of our employees in the packaging department standing there, and she had a towel wrapped around her hand. And, and there was a pool of blood below the towel. And whatever happened was is is because we've been running short staffed. Everybody was rushing. She'd recenter, the packing machine and got her hand caught in a packaging machine. That's the bottom line. And it was a situation where ultimately, everybody said, Well, you know, was operator error, but the reality was, it was the fact that it was an employee retention issue. You know, you dig deeper. And I mean, that's probably one of the I'll say the more say, Grizzly stories that I've gotten probably is the grizzly bear story. But again, there's a deeper lesson than operator error. And that's what I try to bring out with all the stories in there, you know, I mean, what, what is it that you can learn as a human resource leader that you can use to make a difference or for that matter, as a supervisor? You know, because, right, but but that's, yeah, that's, that's, that's one of the stories, that's the one, you know, that always kind of pops to mind, because I actually, I used that story. When I, I do a program called creating a culture of crap. That's one of the stories that I use to get people to sit up and listen. So that they take what I talked about, and take it to heart.

Kyle Roed:

Yeah, I think it's it's, you know, it's being extremely accountable to the, the environment that you created as an employer. Mm hmm. Yeah. As opposed to just pointing fingers. Right.

Jeff Kortes:

Right. I mean, and again, that was, I love what you said is being accountable as an employer. Because it's easy to see operator error. It's hard to take a good hard look at yourself and say, Wait a second. We've been running short staffed, people are rushing. That's a

Kyle Roed:

lot harder to it's a lot harder to admit it. Yeah. Right. Because Because if staffing is short, guess who owns that? HR? Yeah,

Unknown:

exactly. You know, and that's, I mean, it is what it is. Now, mistakes may have been made by the individual, but they wouldn't have been that environment wouldn't have been there. Had you done your job right. right and that's that's a harsh that's, that's a harsh truth answer for yourself. Yeah, that's that's a great, great point. And

Kyle Roed:

yeah, unfortunately, I've had to deal with grisly situations like that. Being from the the world of manufacturing, not frequently, thank goodness. But there's always an underlying reason. There's always something beyond behavior. It's deeper. There's always something

Unknown:

there. Right. gotta dig in. Exactly. Great point. Great point. This is just a great conversation. I can keep going for another another two hours here, but I want to be respectful of your time. So we're going to shift gears into the rebel HR flash round. Alright, so flash round question number one. What are you reading right now?

Jeff Kortes:

Right now I am reading, killing Jesus. I've read all the killing the killing series, because I'm a big history buff. But for some reason I'd never read. I never read killing Jesus. So I decided, you know, coming into the Christmas holidays. I wanted to read that. So I'm reading. I'm reading killing Jesus by Bill O'Reilly.

Kyle Roed:

I don't think I could get away with with having that book on my nightstand with my kids around.

Jeff Kortes:

Probably not.

Kyle Roed:

But I have to hide it. I'll put it in the night.

Jeff Kortes:

Yesterday, so I don't have that.

Kyle Roed:

Yeah, my Yeah. Or it would be even worse. If it was killing Santa, that would

Jeff Kortes:

know. Exactly.

Kyle Roed:

Alright, question number two, Who should we be listening to?

Jeff Kortes:

Oh, that's, that's a loaded question me. You need to be following me on LinkedIn. I do four blogs a week. I, you know, again, I'm all about employee retention. I'm just, I'm kind of an employee retention loyalty geek. I mean, I can get excited about employee retention, but ya know it, because employee retention is going to be one of the biggest challenges that people face in the next decade. So I my goal is to offer a lot of value. So that people say, you know what, this makes sense. I need to change kind of, kind of like we talked about, you know, looking at yourself with the with the hand situation I described. But yeah, yeah, you need to be listening to me most definitely.

Kyle Roed:

All right. Last question, how can our listeners connect with you?

Jeff Kortes:

You can get me at Jeff cordis comm that's spelled ke o r. t. s. And, yeah, drop me an email, there's some great resources on the website, you can sign up for my blog, which goes out every two weeks. I'm all employee retention all the time. So you know, if that's something that you want to learn more about, and whenever, but the websites great, because I've got a lot of resources that are free. Because I feel if I'd add value to folks, people will say, you know, maybe man, I need to bring this guy in, he could really add some extra for us.

Unknown:

Yeah. Yeah. And on a personal note, so for anybody listening to this, that isn't aware. So I've, I've heard Jeff speak twice. Now. And, you know, it's it's great content, and it's in, you know that some of the stories and some of the some of the tips, I was fortunate to hear early in my in my career in HR and incorporate them. And they've continued through my career to, to build success and help. Help me Help my employees. so strongly encourage you to connect with Jeff, listen to some of the advice and and listen and learn.

Jeff Kortes:

Kyle, I appreciate it. Yeah, thanks for having me on. I you know, I, you know, the more people I can reach, the more people I can help.

Kyle Roed:

I appreciate it. Look forward to it. We'll have all your information in the show notes. Jeff courtice. Thank you so much for joining us today.

Jeff Kortes:

Remember, give your employees crap. Because crap works.

Kyle Roed:

And I got I'm full of crap. So here we go. Thanks, Kyle. Thanks, Jeff. All right. That does it for the rebel HR podcast. guests. Follow us on Facebook at rebel HR podcast, Twitter at rebel HR guy or see our website at rebel Human Resources comm use it opinions expressed by podcast

Jude Roed:

baby