Michigan Recruiter’s Conference – Nov. 10! Tickets OnSale Now!

FYI – Due to limited seating capacity – this event will sell out quickly, and this will be the only event in Michigan this year. Sorry to my TA friends in West and Mid-Michigan, but we will work to have an event closer to you in 2023!

The only specifically designed Recruiter conference for corporate Talent Acquisition Pros and Leaders in Michigan! The Michigan Recruiters Conference is designed to be an annual event that will bring in the brightest recruiting minds in the country to nurture and develop corporate recruiting as a whole in Michigan. The event organizer is Tim Sackett. 

The 2022 Michigan Recruiters Conference will be held on Thursday, November 10th, in Detroit at DTE. Registration begins at 8 am, and the conference begins at 8:45 am sharp!

For the 2022 Michigan Recruiters Conference, we are bringing in some of the best talent acquisition thought leaders in the world:

  • Global TA Leader, Marriott, and Author, Kris Dunn.
  • TA Expert and Analyst, Aptitude Research, Madeline Laurano.
  • Global TA Leader, General Motors, Cyril George.
  • LinkedIn and Branding expert Brenda Mellar.
  • Branding& Conversational AI Expert, Paradox, Josh Zywien.
  • Director of Recruitment Ops, Beaumont Health, Charlotte Byndas.
  • Site HR Director General Motors, Stephanie Zywien.
  • Senior Sourcing Expert, Guild Education, Hunter Casperson.
  • Author of The Talent Fix and TA Execution expert Tim Sackett.

We also have sponsor presentations from the folks at HireEZ, Paradox, Greenhouse, and DTE! Not to sell us but to teach us! We don’t feed the vendors! 

Also, you are getting the greatest opportunity in Michigan to network with your talent acquisition peer group to connect and share! 

This is, for sure, our best lineup yet! National conferences would beg to get this group of folks in one room for one day! You don’t have to beg, we pulled every friend card we have to get them here for you! 

Check it out at www.MichiganRecruits.com!

Does working for a bad boss help your career more than a good boss?

If you’re like most people, you’ve probably worked for some good bosses and some bad bosses. The best bosses I worked for were supportive and empathetic. They cared about me as a person and supported me as a professional. The bad bosses usually just focused on themselves and what I could do for them.

I know many people who will talk about working for a terrible boss and actually show signs of professional PTSD! We joke, but sometimes the experience can be that awful. There was a recent study done with refugees who are survivors of torture. I’m not saying working for a bad boss is “torture,” but I know I can find some people who would argue it is!

Here goes, Tim! Good bosses, bad bosses, and torture survival!

The study mentioned above found that refugees who were tortured, compared to those who didn’t get tortured, became more resilient. That which doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, comes to mind.

I think the same can be said about working for a bad boss compared to a good boss.

Employers are constantly looking for resilient employees. We try to measure resiliency in pre-employment assessments. During the past few years, resilience as a hiring competency has been very hot.

I have this theory that working for a bad boss or a bad company that treats you poorly, in many ways, makes you a better employee than you working for a great boss and a great company. And it all has to do with raising your level of resilience! You see, when times are good, and things are relatively easy, you are exercising that resiliency muscle.

I’m not saying you get soft working for great leaders and great companies, but you might get a little soft!

We see this constantly in the world as we go through great economic times. Everyone gets a little softer. Hard economic times force us to work that resiliency muscle. To harden up a bit, to grow a thicker skin, put up with some stuff that we wouldn’t normally, to survive.

Bad Bosses and Bad Companies Make More Resilient Workers!

There’s a fine line between becoming resilient and getting broken. That’s the hard part. Like the study found, in some cases, a person just gives up and accepts their fate. They begin to believe this was somehow deserved. The key is to find the “survivors,” those who wouldn’t give in or give up. Those who actually become more resilient from their experiences. Those are your diamonds in the rough from an employee perspective.

Too often, we only want to hire from winners. “Well, they worked for Google. They must be awesome!” And they might be. But I want “awesome” and “resilient” when I know we’ll face tough times. When we have to dig ourselves out of a hole, from a business perspective, I want to have some people who have been in a hole before and found their way out!

Another option is looking for strong workers who work for a bad boss at a good employer. We all know the world, at every company, is littered with some bad bosses, no matter the brand. I have a feeling the same resilience is built up over time. Having to “deal” with a bad boss for a while, and figuring out how to be still productive and get things done is an amazing skill to have acquired in your career. Even though it won’t feel that way at the time!

Yep, today Tim wrote about how refugee torture victims and working for bad bosses is similar to how we build resilience. Now to work on a case study with my own team…

Stay hard.

The BIG HR Tech Conference What I Learned Post! #hrtechconf

The largest HR Technology Conference in the world took place a couple of weeks ago in Las Vegas, and I attended it for my 10th year in a row! At this conference, I did 26 briefings with various HR Technology companies and judged two rounds of the Pitchfest HR Tech Startup competition! I also hit 13 cocktail parties and had my shared BFF cocktail party with Madeline Laurano and Kyle Lagunas get shutdown do to overcrowding! Welcome back to Vegas, HR Tech!!!

The big question is always: What did I learn and see?

– First, it was giant! Over 600+ vendors at the expo make it the largest ever, and I can’t even describe how incredible it is!

– The vibe? High energy! Folks were excited to be back in person, and it seemed like everyone was happy with the show and the content. Josh Bersin, once again, killed his keynote to a packed audience. I’m not sure who can fill his shoes in our space! There is really no one who pulls such a crowd like Josh. I’m positioning myself as his opening act at HR Tech Fest Asia next spring! He’s that HR Famous that he needs an opening act!

– The Pitchfest winner this year was Spotlyfe, an employee engagement platform that makes sense coming out of the pandemic, with so many more employees working remotely and hybrid and more awareness around our employee’s mental health!

– Other Pitchfest startups that I really liked also: Dalia (recruiting automation), JobSync (recruiting orchestration), and SmartRank (candidate screening). That’s the hard part of Pitchfest. 33 startups, and think about ten could have won!

– The rise of Talent Orchestration! HiredScore is the originator of this new marketing speak, to give credit where credit is due, and an amazing technology to check out! What is “talent orchestration”? Basically, it’s an invisible AI-driven technology that connects all of your recruiting technology and makes it work as it should! I spoke to some enterprise-level TA leaders who had great things to say about their experience using HiredScore.

– I was a bit surprised that I didn’t really see anyone who has figured out how to leverage technology to figure out the cultural dilemma we currently have with remote, hybrid, and on-premise workers. How do you bring all three of these segments together, effectively and efficiently, under one culture? It just shows how complex of an issue this is for HR!

– The Future of HR Technology is technology you don’t see. That is amazing and what is needed, but also a problem for marketers! “Invisible Tech” is the technology you don’t see, but it does exactly what you want it to do. Most tech is sold through a demo, and you see what you’re buying. The future tech you won’t see, but it will actually work! Hard to sell six and seven-figure deals of something you don’t see! But this is exactly how our tech should work. I want to fill job “X” and all of a sudden, candidates who are interested and match the job show up in my email or on my calendar to interview for job”X.” I don’t need to see any of that. I just need it to work!

– Apparently, vendors think the future of HR Technology is “Skills”! I’m not 100% sold we are in a skills economy. We are in a definite lack of skills economy, which puts us in need to build and develop skills. The problem is, it’s really hard to do! We have historically been really bad at building talent for our organizations. Just because you can now measure and deliver skills doesn’t necessarily make us better at building talent. But, it won’t be for lack of trying from the vendor community around HR Technology!

– My friend and HR Famous fellow podcaster, Madeline Laurano, did a session on the future of talent acquisition technology and the current landscape. She did an absolute mic drop when it came to DEI recruiting technology when she put up the slide of the vendors you should look at, and it was EMPTY! Her point is most of the DEI tech on the market is vapor. You either have great recruiting technology, or you don’t. Calling yourself DEI recruiting tech, but no one uses it for recruiting tech, is very telling! By the way, she’s right. You can either help a company recruit better, or you can’t. There’s nothing special about DEI recruiting tech that shouldn’t be built into your core recruiting technology.

– The overlap of technologies is becoming a problem. Basically, we have techs building out more and more and encroaching on each other’s turf. Great, but it’s confusing the buyer in a major way. Normally, when a technology space gets like this, you would see massive consolidation. The problem is the values of tech in our space over the past few years are extremely overvalued, so we aren’t seeing this consolidation happen yet. If a recession does impact HR tech values, it’s going to get crazy with folks buying each other!

Recruiting is going to continue to be very difficult over the next few years, even with a business slowdown. There just aren’t enough humans for the jobs we have open. Automation and robotics will catch up and help, but we still have some major demographic issues we will face. This means the technology and investment will continue as well. We are being forced into a path of choosing your pain – steal talent from others, build your own talent, do a combination, or die waiting for applicants to apply to your jobs.

The ones with the best technology stacks, best measures, and best insights into their data will win. Today is not the time to sit by and watch the world pass you in HR. The technology that runs our people business is changing fast, and the top leaders in HR stay on top of this curve.

Shoutout to the LRP Team and Devon Team for all the work that goes into pulling off this event. I’m just not quite sure how they do it!

Set your calendar for 2023 – The HR Technology Conference will be back at the Mandalay Bay on October 10-13th, and god willing, I’ll be back for my 11th time!

The Recruiter Texting Rules!

Here we go! Your boy is back with some more rules! You know I love me some rules! I’m high rules, and low details, which drives most people crazy!

I was having a conversation recently with some recruiters about texting candidates. For the most part, in recruiting, we’ve gotten to this point where we believe every candidate prefers texting over every other kind of communication. And, if they don’t want a text message, then they want email.

This isn’t exactly true! I did some research and surveyed over 1600 candidates we screened to find out the facts and published it – 6 Things Candidates Want You to Know – you can download it here for free. But I’m not here trying to sell you a free whitepaper!

The entire reason we believe candidates prefer text over any other form of communication is some creative marketing around text vs. email response rates in overall text vs. email communications. Now, this is where all of this falls apart. I get over 500 emails per day. I get maybe 25-50 messages. Of course, I’m going to respond more to text messages vs. email. But that doesn’t mean, as a candidate, I want text vs. email, necessarily!

This all lead me down a path where I believe we need some rules around texting as recruiters!

The Recruiter Texting Rules:

Rule No. 1 – As the first outreach to a candidate you don’t know, texting is not preferred by candidates. They don’t know you, and they certainly don’t want you jumping into their private text messages with a spammy job offer!

Rule No. 2 – No one of quality ever accepted an interview and job offer through text message without first speaking to a real human. Pick up the god damn phone. Once a candidate is all in with you, then yes, they will most likely only want texts from you.

Rule No. 3 – Give me a way to opt-out of your bad text recruiting automation hell! For one, it’s the law. But, most still make it way too difficult to stop the automated texts.

Rule No. 4 – Just because you have my number as a candidate does not give you permission to stalk me for a date. It’s super creepy!

Rule No. 5 – If we aren’t friends, don’t text me like we are friends. Avoid sarcasm. Keep it professional and short.

Rule No. 6 – If it feels like you’re sending candidates too many text messages. You are sending candidates too many text messages! Also, don’t text me a novel! Send long stuff in an email.

Rule No. 7 – If I ask you a question, answer the damn question! We are adults. You can tell me the truth I don’t need some run-around answer that doesn’t really answer my question.

Rule No. 8 – If you expect me to respond within minutes. I expect you’ll respond within minutes. Set the ground rules around expectations early.

Rule No. 9 – Never! And I mean, NEVER! Text with a green bubble! Just Kidding! 😉

Okay, peeps, what did I forget? Give me your favorite rule for texting candidates in the comments below.

Take a look at some awesome new HR Technology startups! #HRTechConf

The popular startup competition will take place during the upcoming HR Technology Conference, happening September 13 – 16, 2022, at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. I’m super proud to once again be of the judges selected by LRP Media Group and the HR Technology Conference for this year’s Pitchfest. It is my favorite event of the year!!

This year, 33 companies will compete during the three preliminary rounds, each with five minutes to present and two to three minutes to answer questions from the judges. Based on a combination of votes from the audience and the judges, the total score earned by each company in the preliminary rounds will determine which six advance to the finals.

On Thursday, September 15, at 10 a.m. PT, the Pitchfest final will name one winner to receive the grand prize of $25,000 and exhibit space at the 2023 HR Technology Conference. A second-place winner will get $5,000. Prize money for the winners will be donated by Randstad Innovation Fund, Randstad’s strategic corporate venture fund.

Listed in alphabetical order, these are the companies selected to participate in the 2022 Pitchfest:

1.    AtlasJobs

2.    Dalia (Frontline Recruiting Tech)

3.    EasyLlama (Sexual Harassment Compliance)

4.    Educe Software (Talent Management Tech)

5.    Extraview (Interview Tech)

6.    Findem (Sourcing Tech)

7.    Finwello Inc. (Financial Wellness)

8.    Gift Better Co. (Employee Appreciation)

9.    Illoominus Software, Inc (DEI Analytics Tech)

10. Inclusively (Workforce Inclusion)

11. ishield.ai (Diversity Communication Tech)

12. JobSync (Recruiting Automation Tech)

13. Largely (Talent Marketplace)

14. Lumina (Job Advertising Tech)

15. Manager360

16. ModernLoop (Recruiting Opersations Tech)

17. PivotCX (Recruiting Communications Tech)

18. Pointr (Position Tracking Tech)

19. Praisidio (Talent Retention)

20. Probotalent, LLC (Reference Assessment Solution)

21. Pulse – Automatic Status (Slack Status solution)

22. Ramped (Upskilling)

23. ReturnSafe (Hybrid Work Experience Tech)

24. Rise (Core HCM)

25. SmartRank (Candidate Screening)

26. Soundbite Inc. (Employee Engagement Tech)

27. SPOTLYFE (Employee Engagement Tech)

28. Sunny Day Fund (Financial Wellbeing Tech)

29. TaTiO (Applicant Attraction Solution)

30. TeamSense (Text-based Hourly Worker Comms Tech)

31. ThinkSight (People Analytics Tech)

32. Translator, Inc. (DEI Learning Platform)

33. uMap™ (Talent Management Tech)

**You’ll notice two of the 33 don’t have links – that’s because I couldn’t find them based on their name! That’s a great Startup lesson.**

So, how do you use this list? Start clicking through and see who they are and what they do! What I find is that many of these startups have amazing technology, and they are looking to get users to prove their concept, so that means you can probably get great tech at a great price!! Plus, many times, be at the forefront of an HR Technology movement.

That starts with a demo! I promise, they are painless, and you will learn some cool stuff, give it a try! Challenge yourself to do one new demo a quarter. Keep on top of the technology that is shaping our industry into the future!

HR Technology Conference Unveils 2022 Top HR Product Awards! @HRTechConf #HRTechConf

The HR Technology Conference is right around the corner, September 13-16, in Las Vegas, and today, they announced the winners of this year’s Top HR Products! I will be attending this year’s conference, and I will be a judge at HR Technology Conference’s startup competition, The Pitchfest, which runs throughout the event.

Here are the winners of the 2022 Top HR Products:

ADP Intelligent Self-Service

ADP Intelligent Self-Service anticipates, solves and reduces employee issues before becoming a problem. Combining artificial intelligence, deep HCM knowledge and intuitive experiences, ADP Intelligent Self-Service proactively nudges employees to resolve potential issues.


Compa is offer-management software to help talent teams make smarter offers and gain real-time market data. When recruiters use Compa, they can skip spreadsheets and automate workflows to find pay guidelines, navigate pay conversations and build custom offers that get approved quickly.

Eightfold Job Intelligence Engine

The Eightfold Job Intelligence Engine provides an AI-powered foundation for role definitions that dynamically learns from internal and external talent insights. By replacing archaic and ineffective job descriptions with centrally defined roles, the tool combines AI, automation and human expertise for better decision-making.

Gloat Workforce Intelligence

For many organizations, workforce strategy is often encumbered by fragmented systems and manual processes that make it difficult to meet the demands of increasingly agile talent and business needs. With this in mind, Gloat built the Workforce Intelligence suite to solve the challenges of accessing scalable skills, jobs and talent insight, empowering organizations to understand and adapt to market needs.

iCIMS Marketing Automation 

Amplify sourcing and engagement efforts with sophisticated lead scoring and conditional, behavior-based campaign personalization to address the toughest talent and recruiting challenges. iCIMS Marketing Automation redefines recruitment marketing by helping recruiting teams adapt to the age of the candidate.


Joyous is an app that unlocks the expertise in large workforces to solve strategic challenges. It works in four steps: it breaks a big challenge down into small conversation starters; reaches out to a cohort of the workforce who will have the knowledge needed; routes their responses to subject matter experts and leaders who turn it into conversations, asking for clarification or offering support; and finally, AI analyzes all those conversations to identify the actionable themes that will make the biggest impact.

Oracle ME

Oracle ME is a complete employee experience platform designed to elevate employees’ growth, connections and ability to thrive in the new ways of work and workplaces today. Part of Oracle Cloud HCM, Oracle ME enables organizations to deliver personalized experiences to every worker based on their unique characteristics and situations. .

Paradox Animated Assessments

Paradox has built the fastest, mobile-first assessment on the market, requiring just 90 seconds to complete and boasting a 95% completion rate. By using animated images rather than words, candidates provide accurate information in a fraction of the time, reducing candidate drop-off and increasing satisfaction.

Plum Leadership Potential 

Plum Leadership Potential enables organizations to identify high-potential talent using proven science combined with scalable technology. By leveraging the results of Plum’s single assessment, organizations can instantly measure leadership potential in every employee, ensuring each member of the workforce is equitably considered for their aptitude.

PTO Genius

PTO Genius helps organizations transform the employee experience and boost profitability by unleashing the power of PTO. The AI-powered software helps optimize and automate time off to uncover hidden opportunities to decrease burnout, improve employee wellness and reduce churn.

ServiceNow Manager Hub

Manager Hub delivers a purpose-built destination for people leaders to stay informed and engaged with their teams by leveraging personalized resources to guide their leadership journey. Managers can view a summary of team insights and action items for employee journeys, daily team stats, important dates, tasks and requests.

Talview Interview Insights

Talview Interview Insights maximizes the effectiveness of the Interview. The AI-powered solution works by analyzing conversations and behaviors to assess the candidate and the interviewer, helping organizations continuously improve the quality of interviewing.

Workday Scheduling and Labor Optimization

Workday Scheduling and Labor Optimization is an intelligent, worker-first scheduling solution that leverages artificial intelligence to match labor demand with worker qualifications, availability and preferences to optimize schedules for both workers and the business automatically. By analyzing data across the organization, Workday Scheduling and Labor Optimization helps managers and operations leaders optimize schedules to meet both the labor demands of the business and numerous business parameters—such as labor regulations—and worker scheduling preferences.

There will be over 600 HR Technology vendors at this year’s conference! These products definitely stood out as a few of the must-see technology advances across the HR tech stack. For me, The HR Technology Conference is one of the conferences I will not miss on an annual basis in our industry. Having a great understanding of HR Technology and the impact it has on running a successful business is a must-have skill every HR leader must have in our current environment.

Why do you suck!?

There’s an interactive questioning technique called The 5 Whys.  The theory is that if you continue to ask ‘why’ enough times, you’ll get to the root cause of every issue.

  • Timmy is a bad performer. Why?
  • He doesn’t follow through on anything. Why?
  • It seems like he gets things started well and then moves on to other things before the first thing is finished. Why?
  • He likes the energy of starting new projects. Why?
  • He thinks if he’s on the front side of the project, he’ll have more influence on the direction the project is going. Why?
  • Because that has been his experience with our organization.

Oh, so he might not be a bad performer. He just has an opportunity area that we might be able to help him out with – getting projects across the finish line.  And we’ve taught him to behave in this manner.

I don’t know if you have to use to 5 whys each time. I do think you have to ask at least three whys to get past the emotion of any decision.  We tend to make most decisions with some element of emotion.  Getting to the third why will get the emotion out in the open.  That is important in any decision-making process.

Does this technique seem a little ‘parental’?  It does, which is why you probably don’t want to make a habit of using this technique too often.  It is definitely a tool, though, that can be very effective for a leader to use from time to time.

  • “We need to change our hiring process!”
  • Why?
  • “We have had three consecutive failed hires.”
  • Why?

“Well, one person was a referral from an executive, so we hired without really checking references. One hire totally aced our pre-employment testing but had a sketchy work history but tested off the charts. One was a knockout in the interview, marginal testing, and just didn’t pan out.”

So, do we really need to change our hiring process? Or should we just start following our hiring process?

3 Whys takes the emotion out of any decision-making process.  It gets out everyone’s inner issues about the problem.  We tend to lead with a crisis statement that will lead to action.  If we take action based on incomplete information, we will unnecessarily start doing things that we might not need to do or make changes that really don’t make sense to the organization.

Next time you are facing a tough decision, start asking ‘Why’ and see where it leads you. You might be surprised where you’ll end up!

5 Signs You Should Not Make That Job Offer!

If I have learned anything at all in my HR/Recruiting career, it’s that everyone has an opinion on what makes a good hire. If you ask 100 people to give you one thing they focus on when deciding between candidates, you’ll get 100 different answers!

I’ve got some of my own. They might be slightly different than yours, but I know mine will work!  So, if you want to make some better selections, take note, my young Padawans:

1. Crinkled up money. Male or female, if you pull money out of your pocket or purse and it’s crinkled up, you’ll be a bad hire!  There is something fundamentally wrong with people who can’t keep their cash straight. The challenge you have is how do you get a candidate to show you this? Ask to copy their driver’s license or something like that!

2. Males with more selfies on their Instagram than all other photos. I don’t even have to explain this (also, don’t go do a count on my IG!).

3. Slow walkers.  If you don’t have some pep in your step, at least for the interview, you’re going to be a drag as an employee.

4. My Last Employer was so Awesome! Yeah, that’s great. We aren’t them. Let’s put a little focus back on what we got going on right here, sparky. Putting too much emphasis on a job you love during the interview is annoying. We get it. It was a good gig. You f*ck’d it up and can’t let go. Now we’ll have to listen about it for the next nine months until we fire you.

5. Complaining or being Rude to waitstaff.  I like taking candidates to lunch or dinner, just to see how they treat other people. I want servant leaders, not assholes, working for me. The meal interview is a great selection tool to weed out bad people.

What are your signs not to make an offer?  Share in the comments!

How Can Organizations Succeed In a Multi-Channel Work Environment?

I’m keynoting the HRM Tech Asia conference in 2023, and as part of that, HRM Magazine did an interview with me for their Aug/Sept Magazine. The idea is we all want to offer flexibility. Our employees and candidates are demanding flexibility, but building a solid culture across all of these work environments is very complex!

Here’s some of what I had to say:

You can read the full article by clicking here!