Getting On-Boarding Right

From pre-K to college, professional teachers understand the critical importance of a successful school year launch. “Onboarding Isn’t Enough,” from a recent Harvard Business Review states new employees need to be fully integrated into the culture of the company.  In the study of senior executives:

“Organizational culture and politics, not lack of competence or managerial skill, were the primary reasons for failure.” For new executives to succeed the research stated requires:

  1. Assuming operational leadership
  2. Taking charge of the team
  3. Aligning with stakeholder
  4. Engaging with the culture
  5. Defining strategic intent

In my book, The 100: Building Blocks for Business Leadership, I explain in chapter 30 how we set the tone quickly, upon acceptance of our offer, we:

  • Send a letter of congratulations
  • Courier a floral arrangement delivery to their home
  • Send an email explaining what to expect the first week

In short, take time and care to communicate with new employees.

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Why Work for Intertech?

We also exceed expectations by offering some exceptional benefits, such as:

  •  Three-month paid sabbatical for every seven years of service. If you don’t want to take the time, you can opt to receive cash instead…or tailor a combination of time off/cash that works best for you and your family.
  •  Flexible work culture that allows the majority of our employees to work from home one or more days each week. In fact, nearly half of our revenue last year was generated by employees working remotely.
  •  SIGNING BONUS: Intertech will purchase equipment for your home office-related expenses (up to $1,500).
  •  Exceptional teammates who have your back and learn from each other. That’s the result of selective hiring standards in which only one of every 20 hiring candidates are asked to join our team.
  •  Being part of a rare organization that is a two-time #1 Mid-Sized Employer in Minnesota award winner (Minnesota Business magazine, 2012 & 2014) and one of the Top 10 IT mid-sized consulting firms in North America (Consulting magazine, 9/13).

Know someone who maybe interested in joining our team, connect with them and fill out: https://www.intertech.com/Jobs/Candidate-Referral-Program  

Tweet: Know someone who maybe interested in joining our team, connect with them and fill out: https://www.intertech.com/Jobs/Candidate-Referral-Program

Intertech Earns Title of Most Best Places to Work Awards

“Next, we congratulate 13–time winner Intertech, which shares the title of most Best Places to Work awards with (one other firm)” said the emcee at last week’s Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal Best Places to Work Awards.

My thanks to our tremendous employees and loyal customers for making us possible.

Social Media Marketing Matters

Image result for social media icons mediumTechnology can be like that classic Dickens’ novel: the worst of times and the best of times, all at the same time. Take social media. Depending on who’s talking, social media is either transforming the planet in all sorts of positive ways, from social organizing and crowd sourcing, or causing a drastic decline in literacy and civility.

The truth – like most things – probably can be found somewhere in the middle.

That’s certainly the case when it comes to social media and business marketing. An interesting piece in Harvard Business Review by Douglas Holt makes the case that “companies have sunk billions of dollars into producing content on social media, hoping to build audiences around their brands. But consumers haven’t shown up.”

Holt is the founder and president of the Cultural Strategy Group and a former Harvard Business School and University of Oxford professor. He believes that social media “has transformed how culture works and that digital crowds have become powerful cultural innovators.” He calls this “crowdculture” and while it makes it difficult for companies to compete for eyeballs online, Holt says the way forward is for companies to collaborate with crowdcultures.

He cites successful examples of “cultural branding,” including Chipotle, Dove and Axe. Why? Each of these brands tapped into a larger cultural trend and then provided online content to piggyback on existing psychological trends. These companies, of course, enjoy the luxury of multi-million dollar marketing budgets. If you work for a mega company doing marketing on that scale, I strongly urge you to read Holt’s HBR article, “Branding in the age of social media.”

If you’re like smaller and growing companies, a more down-to-earth approach to social media makes marketing (and financial) sense. For Intertech, this has meant growing our online presence by providing content that offers business value. We give away our expertise online but we gain by building trust in our brand. From blogs and white papers to webinars and participation in technical chat rooms, Intertech lets people know we’re here and we have something valuable to share. That’s invaluable!

Having a solid and predictable online presence also lets potential customers know you’re real and you’re here for the long-term. Even something as seemingly trivial as how many Facebook likes your page garners speaks volumes about how your company is perceived in the marketplace of your peers. Let’s face it, a thousand or more “likes” beats 50 any day of the week!

Building a respectable online presence takes time and effort. I recommend some advice that I believe originated with Winston Churchill, “Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.” If you’re a small shop or solo consultant, maybe your best strategy is to write one blog post each month and to comment on other blogs related to your industry or area of expertise.

It’s better to start slowly and remain consistent over time rather than to burst onto the scene with all social guns blazing only to peter out a few months later (it happens!). But if you do decide to tackle multiple social media platforms simultaneously, be sure to provide different, fresh and valuable content for each platform.