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The Talent Economy Podcast

The Future of Staffing Is Now

Companies today are facing a global war for talent. At the same time, the talent with the skills companies are fighting over wants more flexibility around the way they work and the way they live.Talent now has a choice a
Latest Episode9/6/2021

Creating an Employee Alumni Network

Season 2, Ep. 13
Many employers understand that their employees are the key to making their businesses successful. Yet, once those workers move on, companies typically don’t keep in contact with them. Should they? In this episode, we speak with Kim Seymour, Chief People Officer of WW International Inc. (formerly Weight Watchers) and Jeff Wald, an angel investor, entrepreneur, and bestselling author, about the value of maintaining relationships with past employees and where the future of work as we know it might be headed.In her role, Seymour oversees all aspects of WW’s human capital plan, with a strong emphasis on talent, leadership, diversity, and organizational effectiveness. She spent the previous two decades in HR leadership roles at American Express, Home Depot, and General Electric. Seymour currently serves on the board of directors of RHR International and the board of trustees of Fisk University, a historically Black college. A graduate of both the University of Tennessee at Martin and Vanderbilt Law School, Seymour also holds an MBA from Indiana University. As an expert in business culture and talent, she is often asked to share her forward-thinking HR strategies and personal leadership philosophies with a variety of global audiences.Jeff Wald is the Amazon bestselling author of The End of Jobs: The Rise of On-Demand Workers and Agile Corporations, about how companies and workers reacted to the last three industrial revolutions. He is the founder of three tech companies, including WorkMarket, purchased by ADP, and Spinback, acquired by Buddy Media, now owned by Salesforce. He is also an angel investor and startup adviser. Wald serves on the board of directors at TRANSFR Inc., ModusLink, and Costar Technologies. He holds two degrees from Cornell University, and is an alumnus of Harvard Business School. In 2020, Wald announced the $10 million Future of Work Prize that will reward The End of Jobs contributor whose prediction about what the workforce will look like in 2040 proves the most accurate.Seymour and Wald discuss what they think will be the COVID-19 pandemic’s most lasting influences on the world of work, what shorter employee tenure means for company culture, and why we should be thinking about ex-employees as ambassadors. They also talk about why healthy employer/employee relationships depend on keeping open lines of communication and not taking things personally, and how to create team success within a hybrid work structure.Some Questions Asked:What changes have already occurred in the world of work since The End of Jobs came out last year?What emerging technologies do you think will most change the world of work?Is the trend toward shorter tenures a good thing? Is WW doing anything to counteract it?How do you hire employees who understand the need to be constant learners and adapters? And how do you foster that growth mindset among the employees you already have?In This Episode, You Will Learn:Why we need to rethink the system of tying benefits to current employment.About the idea of alumni labor clouds and their implications for current and former employees and employers.WW’s take on how, when, and where its employees should work.Links for Kim Seymour:FortuneForbesLinkedInLinks for Jeff Wald:The End of Jobs: The Rise of On-Demand Workers and Agile CorporationsPR Newswire - $10 Million Future of Work PrizeLinkedIn
9/6/2021

Creating an Employee Alumni Network

Season 2, Ep. 13
Many employers understand that their employees are the key to making their businesses successful. Yet, once those workers move on, companies typically don’t keep in contact with them. Should they? In this episode, we speak with Kim Seymour, Chief People Officer of WW International Inc. (formerly Weight Watchers) and Jeff Wald, an angel investor, entrepreneur, and bestselling author, about the value of maintaining relationships with past employees and where the future of work as we know it might be headed.In her role, Seymour oversees all aspects of WW’s human capital plan, with a strong emphasis on talent, leadership, diversity, and organizational effectiveness. She spent the previous two decades in HR leadership roles at American Express, Home Depot, and General Electric. Seymour currently serves on the board of directors of RHR International and the board of trustees of Fisk University, a historically Black college. A graduate of both the University of Tennessee at Martin and Vanderbilt Law School, Seymour also holds an MBA from Indiana University. As an expert in business culture and talent, she is often asked to share her forward-thinking HR strategies and personal leadership philosophies with a variety of global audiences.Jeff Wald is the Amazon bestselling author of The End of Jobs: The Rise of On-Demand Workers and Agile Corporations, about how companies and workers reacted to the last three industrial revolutions. He is the founder of three tech companies, including WorkMarket, purchased by ADP, and Spinback, acquired by Buddy Media, now owned by Salesforce. He is also an angel investor and startup adviser. Wald serves on the board of directors at TRANSFR Inc., ModusLink, and Costar Technologies. He holds two degrees from Cornell University, and is an alumnus of Harvard Business School. In 2020, Wald announced the $10 million Future of Work Prize that will reward The End of Jobs contributor whose prediction about what the workforce will look like in 2040 proves the most accurate.Seymour and Wald discuss what they think will be the COVID-19 pandemic’s most lasting influences on the world of work, what shorter employee tenure means for company culture, and why we should be thinking about ex-employees as ambassadors. They also talk about why healthy employer/employee relationships depend on keeping open lines of communication and not taking things personally, and how to create team success within a hybrid work structure.Some Questions Asked:What changes have already occurred in the world of work since The End of Jobs came out last year?What emerging technologies do you think will most change the world of work?Is the trend toward shorter tenures a good thing? Is WW doing anything to counteract it?How do you hire employees who understand the need to be constant learners and adapters? And how do you foster that growth mindset among the employees you already have?In This Episode, You Will Learn:Why we need to rethink the system of tying benefits to current employment.About the idea of alumni labor clouds and their implications for current and former employees and employers.WW’s take on how, when, and where its employees should work.Links for Kim Seymour:FortuneForbesLinkedInLinks for Jeff Wald:The End of Jobs: The Rise of On-Demand Workers and Agile CorporationsPR Newswire - $10 Million Future of Work PrizeLinkedIn
8/23/2021

Recruiting With AI

Season 2, Ep. 12
As companies work to eliminate bias from their recruiting processes, some are turning to artificial intelligence to help them build a more inclusive workforce. In this episode, we speak with Suzan Morno-Wade, CHRO of Xerox, about how AI—coupled with an emphasis on building human connection—is helping the iconic company hire the best talent.Morno-Wade has been the CHRO of Xerox since 2018. She joined the company in 2016 as Vice President of Global Total Rewards, leading the company’s compensation and benefits strategy. She has more than 20 years of experience in HR leadership for global companies, including Hess, Quantum, Mitsubishi, General Electric, and Quaker Oats. In addition, she serves on the board of directors of A Better Chance, a nonprofit organization whose goal is to increase the number of well-educated young people of color in the United States. In 2019, Black Enterprise named Morno-Wade to the list of Most Powerful Women in Corporate America. She holds a Bachelor of Science in accounting from the University of Illinois.Morno-Wade shares why she believes it’s critical to quantify diversity and inclusion efforts, how the last 18 months have spurred organizations to better anticipate employee needs, and why she feels a responsibility to prepare people for change. She also discusses the decision to have employees return to in-person work and why she believes adaptability and resilience are the two most important skills in today’s business climate.Some Questions Asked:How did you become CHRO of Xerox?How does your work with nonprofits that are dedicated to educating young people of color influence your approach to your role as Xerox’s CHRO?How do you leverage employee resource groups to prompt real, significant change?In This Episode, You Will Learn:The innovative ways Xerox is leveraging cutting-edge technology in its talent acquisition efforts.How other people leaders can effectively use employee resource groups to cultivate honest, open communication that prompts significant change.How AI is helping to solve the issue of bias in recruiting.Links:Suzan Morno-Wade - LinkedIn
8/10/2021

Building Skills With Virtual Reality

Season 2, Ep. 11
As technology continues to evolve, so must the way we learn and work. In this episode, we speak with Dan Domenech, CHRO of Hewlett Packard Enterprise Financial Services, about integrating virtual reality into employee training, and how the immersive experience optimized the learning process.Domenech has almost three decades of experience holding HR leadership positions at several Fortune 500 companies. Over the years, he has honed his focus on building talent pipelines and leadership capability, while also creating passionate, forward-leaning cultures. At HPE Financial Services, he works with the president and CEO to drive business transformation, talent value management, and company culture.Prior to joining HPEFS, Domenech shaped organizational culture and empowered employees at companies including Johnson & Johnson, Dun & Bradstreet, and American Express. Domenech holds a bachelor’s degree from Cornell University, where he also serves as VP of the school’s Latino Alumni Association, as well as an MBA from NYU Stern School of Business. Domenech talks about why the time is right to introduce virtual reality training for employees, the role a growth mindset plays in candidate success, and preparing for the post-COVID-19 pandemic colleague experience. He also discusses how HPE has managed to maintain their rich company culture throughout the pandemic, promoting diversity and equality in a corporate environment, and why it’s so important to encourage career growth and upward mobility for employees.Some Questions Asked:Why is building soft skills so crucial? And how are you using virtual reality to develop those soft skills?When hiring, are you looking for candidates with soft skills that are already well developed, or are you looking more for the ability for them to be trained?What do companies stand to lose if they don’t give their workforce the choice on whether or not they stay remote?In This Episode, You Will Learn:What the logistics of virtual reality training for employees really look like.Why HPE is taking a role-based approach to bringing employees back into the office post-pandemic.How the advancement of women within HPE is so important to Domenech personally, as well as to the company culture as a whole.Links:Dan Domenech - LinkedIn
7/25/2021

Prioritizing Education

Season 2, Ep. 10
The year 2020 offered innumerable lessons about our individual communities and even society as a whole. As we begin to wind down from a tumultuous year, many corporations are looking to their workforce to see what they can do to elevate them. In this episode, we speak with DJ Casto, Executive Vice President and CHRO of Synchrony, one of the nation’s premier consumer financial services companies, about the initiatives companies can take to help build up their employees.At Synchrony, Casto is responsible for engaging employees in the company’s strategic business imperatives and building people-led development programs that strengthen culture, drive business growth, and nurture the company’s talent as a competitive advantage. He began his career at PepsiCo in human resources field operations, advancing to lead labor and employee relations for the North American beverages business, where he managed union awareness strategies before advancing to the role of Senior Director of Global Organization Development. He holds a master’s degree in industrial relations and a bachelor’s degree in business administration from West Virginia University. Casto serves on the boards of Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG), buildOn, and West Virginia University MSIR Executive Alumni.In this episode, Casto provides an in-depth look at Synchrony’s Education as an Equalizer program, and how important education is in creating an ecosystem for success. He also discusses how remote work during the COVID-19 pandemic has helped the company align business goals, and how it has affected the way Synchrony employees work, including insight into the three different “hubs” the company has put into place—and what that means for the future of their working environment.Some Questions Asked:How did you arrive at your job with Synchrony?What are the specific goals for the Education as an Equalizer initiative?What are you doing to continue to instill Synchrony culture to those employees who are now 100% virtual?In This Episode, You Will Learn:About the implementation of Synchrony’s five-year, $50 million Education as an Equalizer initiative and how the concept came about.About Synchrony’s 100 Days of Wellness initiative and how the company is committed to helping its employees refuel after a difficult year.What the pandemic taught Synchrony about employees’ desire to work from home.Links:DJ Casto - LinkedIn
7/12/2021

Investing in Your People

Season 2, Ep. 9
Over the past year and a half, there have been seismic shifts in the workplace as we know it. Through these massive changes, many aspects of corporate culture have been reevaluated. In this episode, we speak with Donna Morris, Executive Vice President and Chief People Officer of Walmart Inc., about how people are the company’s most important asset and the ways she’s working toward building a better, more inclusive organization.Morris has more than 20 years of leadership experience in delivering innovative people solutions, developing and managing agile teams, and helping to build a high-performance culture that promotes diversity and inclusion. As a member of Walmart’s executive committee, she is responsible for attracting, retaining, and developing talent for one of the world’s largest private employers.Morris joined Walmart after 18 years at Adobe, where she served as CHRO and Executive Vice President of Employee Experience. She has also led a number of worker-friendly initiatives, including expanding family leave policies and simplifying standard HR processes. Morris holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Carleton University and serves on the board of directors at Marvell Technology Inc.Morris shares insights about her dedication to building transparency and accountability around Walmart’s hiring process, as well as what it takes to create a more diverse, representative workforce. She also discusses how Walmart is educating employees in tech, what it’s like to join a multibillion-dollar company during a pandemic, and how the company is creating future-ready associates.Some Questions Asked:What was it like to transfer from Adobe to Walmart just as the COVID-19 pandemic began?What was the reason behind releasing the new [email protected] associate app? And why did you give smartphones to 740,000 employees?What kind of hybrid work arrangements do you expect to be the most common at Walmart?In This Episode, You Will Learn:The value behind offering a monetary incentive for employees to receive COVID-19 vaccinations.The ways Walmart is aiming to upskill their workforce.About Walmart’s new 24-hour hiring process and what the company has gleaned from its implementation.Links:Donna Morris - in the Financial TimesDonna Morris - on CNBCDonna Morris - LinkedIn
6/28/2021

Elevating Teams

Season 2, Ep. 8
The prospect of hiring new employees and growing a team that not only works well as a unit, but also fosters a productive, creative, and healthy work environment is a daunting one. In this episode, we speak with Steven Tristan Young, Chief Marketing Officer of Poshmark, about why it’s so important to hire individuals who elevate his team.At Poshmark, the leading US social commerce platform, Young is responsible for driving growth, product marketing, customer life cycle, brand marketing, public relations, and social media marketing. Prior to Poshmark, Young was Vice President of Growth at Grubhub, the US’ leading online and mobile food ordering company. During his seven-year tenure, he managed the company’s customer and market-level growth programs, driving double-digit growth year over year. He has also held leadership positions at DirecTV, American Express, Endurance International Group, and Puma. He spearheaded the marketing efforts for American Express’s flagship Black Card and Platinum Card portfolios, both the market leaders in premium card marketing. He is a graduate of The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and is an alumnus of Harvard Business School.Young discusses his strategy in taking his team to the next level, the roundabout way he ended up in his role at Poshmark, and how he uses the interview process to figure out who’s going to make an exceptional employee. He also shares the challenges involved in hiring from a pool of highly accomplished prospects, the one interview question he never asks his candidates, and the responsibilities involved in being a corporate leader and a member of the LGBTQIA community.Some Questions Asked:What led you to your role at Poshmark?What can companies do to make their workforce richer and more diverse?Have you ever taken a chance on a candidate who you could tell instantly just never had the right coaching?In This Episode, You Will Learn:What Young’s role looks like as CMO.What it’s like to be involved in executive recruiting.Why leaders should focus on the potential a candidate has for elevating the rest of their team.Links:Steven Tristan Young - LinkedIn
6/14/2021

When Leaders Listen

Season 2, Ep. 7
In an ever-changing world, the employer-employee relationship is more crucial than ever before. After nearly a year and a half of remote work and video meetings, properly managing employee burnout has become one of the most important factors in corporate success. In this episode, we speak with Mai Ton, Chief People Officer of Kickstarter, about what happens when a company takes the time to listen and respond to its employees’ needs.Ton has spent the last 20 years leading all aspects of human resources in several businesses. She was the first Vice President of HR at six companies, where she helped build the people function from scratch. Ton has won 14 awards for her companies and was named to the list of the Top 50 Most Powerful Women in Technology, Top 50 Tech Leaders in 2019, and Top 20 Tech Trailblazers from Insights Magazine. She is a board member of LEAP (Leadership Education for Asian Pacifics), a nonprofit organization that helps Asian and Pacific Islanders achieve equality through education, leadership, and empowerment. She is also an advisor to some of the newest HR technology software companies.In this episode, Ton shares her thoughts on the exhaustion of working remotely through COVID-19, the evolving culture of startups, and what happens when the way of work stagnates. She also talks about the rapidly changing future of work, why the pandemic caused Kickstarter to flourish, and her new book, Come Into My Office: Stories From an HR Leader in Silicon Valley.