Soft Skills & Leadership--HR Insight for Managers is written as an open letter and offers provocative ideas and solutions for HR practitioners assisting business managers with growth, development and diplomacy. It's a journey through the traditional HR disciplines and meant to inspire and motivate business managers to gain personal value and strength in current roles. Mike Boissonneault provides a comprehensive and thought provoking essay on the various HR disciplines and written in standard business language. It is a bridge to connect and bond HR professionals with their business managers. In fact, the book can also be a refresher for HR practitioners. For managers who can't afford to go off site for developmental training, they can learn about HR specialization, and will immediately create a better respect for, and support of, their HR partnerships. Also, for aspiring HR staff, this book can whet their appetite and inspire them to see the depth and breadth of what HR is about and how the business community can embrace their best practices. Written by an HR executive, who worked on both sides of this business relationship in a large corporation, Mike gives a fresh and diplomatic review of the soft skills necessary for best management practices. This book is a virtual tour of HR disciplines, explained with a business manager's purview. It's written to inspire business leaders to embrace the collaborative efforts and support of the HR industry while creating a valuable knowledge base and tool for themselves. There are numerous HR organizations and consulting companies who offer thought leadership for the HR communities. Reference sites are current, relevant and inspiring with case studies and other information debated, negotiated and resolved. It's a great environment for HR to share with their business managers, to help find common respect for each other's roles and responsibilities. Blogs, articles and podcasts are important pieces of content to support many decisions in today's business climate. Many of these sites, as Mike points out, are free of charge. The book sets the table by presenting the current gap in soft skill or HR leadership within the business manager's early years. Those formative manager years are typically shaped by poor time management and over-burdened schedules. The book covers some of the reality of being an early manager and the personal changes and commitment associated with the role. Each of the various HR disciplines is explained and correlated between the HR terminology and normal business administrative language. Starting with business design, (org charting) the book shows how a company balances roles, titles and training alignment. The soft skills are evident in areas such as Performance Management, Diversity and Talent Acquisition, for example. The book deals with the various systems, programs and guidelines of how to gather, store and delete sensitive employee data. The employee life cycle starts in organizational design and discussed. Managers can learn from HR leaders in how to create an annual calendar of business events to attend to, featuring performance cycles. Today's talent acquisition is thoroughly reviewed and in step by step fashion. In the book, Mike explains the stages of activity required to hire as this is a very expensive undertaking and more expensive problem if there is a bad hire. Another significant discussion in the book is the discerning between the terms management and leadership. The soft skills and competencies of a leader are so important to note. There is a strong sentiment for creating more leadership and recognizing those qualities as important as any of the organizational skills. Technology and systems will shape the roles in the future as HR and business managers communicate differently. These HR professionals are there explicitly to support business, programs, growth and development and need management support for success.
Mike Boissonneault is an experienced management and leadership consultant. He spent 35+ years at ESPN and The Walt Disney Co. where he teamed with many pioneers who forged innovative ways to produce sporting events across all media and screens. He held significant roles and responsibilities in areas such as Studio Operations and Production. He was a Studio Director on iconic shows and an executive in three divisions at ESPN including Operations, HR and Technology. He contributed in many ways to develop his teams, including programs he created in recruitment, training, communications and performance management. In that span he also contributed to transformative changes in Human Resources, specifically in Talent Acquisition and College Internships. While in Production Operations, he was recruited to work alongside HR on many projects. That's an education you'd find hard to match anywhere. It is with this background that he transferred from an executive role outside the group to one inside Human Resources. Not quite a fish out of water, but he learned that a front row seat in HR for ESPN, and ultimately The Walt Disney Company, was a chance of a lifetime. He immediately acclimated to the environment and standards for compliance. Therefore, when Mike transitioned into the Human Resources world officially, no one blinked an eye. Many thought he was already there. This gave him more insight and education than he could have ever found externally. And he knew, from being on both sides of this great business and HR divide, that something's missing. His personal goal was to gain as much knowledge from leaders across the spectrum and figure out how to close the gap and bring HR specialists and business managers closer together. Mike was exposed to the best world class HR consultants and firms and routinely met to discuss blue sky ideas and current state of skills. He sat with the DOL in an open forum discussions on employment law and sat on panels for ERE, HCI and at NYU and talked about the transformation of talent acquisition, diversity and inclusion. He was now a member of the CLC, SHRM and other organizations. He frequently partnered with the best marketing and branding companies in the country. So worthwhile, and he was a rare success at such crossover leadership. The years in Human Resources flew by and the benefits for him personally included: helping to make changes in employer branding, creating a workforce operations team, transforming talent acquisition, helping with on boarding, partnering with Diversity & Inclusion, delving into compensation market studies and contributing to the learning team on projects. And these are just the highlights. What he learned from each of the consulting partners was the issues and insight he surfaced were similar across the spectrum of industry in this country and there is no clear cut one size fits all answer. Mike believes we need to start with opening the HR environment and education up to business managers. And it could be supported by the HR practitioners as a show of institutional endorsement. Share, collaborate and accept each other. His book, Soft Skills & Leadership--HR Insight for Managers, tackles the need and the execution to proliferate the soft skills and leadership. He is focused on providing business managers with HR Insight. Mike's background and HR front row seat experiences give him a sound platform to communicate from. Each of his roles over the years was clearly built on a foundation of soft skills and leadership. He is a member of several top organizations in HR and Business consulting industries. Mike frequently engages with some very influential thought leaders. In 2017 he co-founded a company called Rewirement Media, LLC and is building a digital content and streaming company that proliferates positive aging and supports the new cross generation of 50-plus who lead active, healthy and aspiring lives in what was all too recently considered the retiring years. A proud alum of CCSU, for several years he continued to give back to his school as guest lecturer in the School of Business, was a keynote speaker at a graduating class annual event and was an advisor on their Institute of Technology and Business Development. Through that opportunity, he led focus groups of cross town business leaders to ascertain current state of employment with regards to strategic millennials hiring. As a Consultant, his wide background allows him to work on many projects in a variety of business environments. Additionally, he is a published contributor and advisor on the University of New Haven's MS Sport Management board. Mike continues to teach and speak at business and collegiate levels about the importance of leadership and is a proud community member and outspoken proponent of core HR roles. He is true to his CT roots.