Three HR Tidibts from the News

by Michael Haberman on September 16, 2011 · 2 comments


If you pay attention there are HR lessons in little tidbets of news. Here are three of those tidbits in three snippets of news taken from Thursday’s news.

  1. So you thought that training was not really all that important? Or training was just for lower level positions? Well the French luxury company LVMH doesn’t agree with that. They have announced that the current CEO of the handbag brand of Louis Vuitton will be replaced by an executive from a yogurt maker. The replacement, Jordi Constans, will work side-by-side in a training capacity with the current CEO for all of 2012. After learning the position he will replace the current CEO, who has been in the position since 1990. In American business we have the tendency to replace CEO’s with candidates that come from outside the organization, supposedly coming with all of the skills needed for the job. So the next time you think “we don’t need to train” give it a second thought.
  2. The “evil empire” of Wal-Mart has shown they are not quiet as heartless as they have been portrayed. They have announced they are launching measures to help our women around the world. They are going to spend $20 billion on goods and services from U.S. business owned by women. (So if you are a businesswoman who dislikes Wal-Mart, you may want to reconsider.) Overseas they are going to provide training to 60,000 women working in factories in order to improve their skills. They will also double the amount they pay women-run suppliers.
  3. Often companies, and HR departments, see customer service as the “customer” having to accept what the company is offering. UPS operated the same way. If you were not around when they arrived, and your signature was needed, you were out of luck. Now they have provided us a lesson with their program called My Choice. You can now chose a time window to have your package delivered in a four -window. For a small fee you can even have that window reduced to two-hours or you can have your package rerouted to another location. I think that this concept of customer service as the customer wants it can provide a big lesson to HR departments everywhere. Give it a try.

So there you have brief HR lessons from three brief tidbits of news. Lessons for us in HR are all around if we pay attention.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

John Haberman September 16, 2011 at 9:02 am

All great examples, however I feel that the Wal-mart example may be a little mis-guided. Wal-mart was, or is still in the middle of a class action lawsuit were it is charged with pay discrimination against it’s female workers. I would not be surprised if their decision to better support female businesses and workers globaly was simply an effort to make themselves look good in front of the presiding judge in that class action. It’s a great thing that they’re doing, but I think it’s just to improve their image in the eyes of women, not be a global good samaritan.

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Michael Haberman September 16, 2011 at 9:16 am

That may be true, but the net effect is that something good happens.

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