The Solution To The Skills Gap, A.I. And Employee Feedback, Creating An Introvert-Friendly Workplace And The Difference Between Recognition And Rewards #FridayFinds

Great articles make our week so much more productive. We can only thank the writers and companies putting together inspirational and helpful content. Sharing it is our way of doing just that.

Here are our favorite articles for this week:

The Solution to the Skills Gap Could Already Be Inside Your Company

In a recent interview with AT&T’s chief strategy officer and group president, John Donovan, Cathy Benko, a vice chairman at Deloitte, describes how AT&T has chosen to rapidly re-skill more than a hundred thousand of its current employees. Her advice for HR leaders and individual managers on how today’s workforce can avoid obsolescence is to focus on developing their internal labor market.

We’re in the middle of a “skills shift.” A mere 20% of today’s workforce has the skills needed for 60% of the jobs that will be coming online within the next five to ten years. So companies understand a major shift is needed.

In our HBR article, my co-author and I highlighted AT&T because it has been strong in its conviction to give its employees—those who have built the brand over the past decades—the opportunity to ensure the continued marketability of their skills through wholesale reskilling. John and I sought to provide a bird’s eye view into AT&T’s talent transformation, both to tell AT&T’s story and to provide a blueprint that may help other companies as they embark on their own transformational journeys.

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Can Artificial Intelligence Make Employee Feedback More Human?

A new AI platform, BetterWorks, hopes to inject more human interaction into the dreaded yet vital manager-to-employee feedback loop. The enterprise software company builds employee work profiles, known as “Work Graphs,” based on data from integrations with Google Apps, email, and Office 365, as well as Salesforce, JIRA, and Slack. Its machine-learning algorithm specifically tracks each employee’s goal progress, goal alignment, comments, cheers, nudges, cross-functional collaboration, recognition hashtags, and more.

According to the company’s CEO, the platform has also been designed to recognize each users’ preferred method of interaction, such as whether they want to receive continuous feedback in real time, or in batches at specific moments during the day.

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Find out how you can use people analytics to predict, manage and measure the impact of HR operations by downloading our new white paper.

Tips for creating an introvert-friendly workplace

The nature of the modern open office can often work against an introvert’s nature, leaving them mentally and emotionally exhausted by the end of the work day. An extravert, on the other hand, might thrive on this type of environment where they can get regular feedback from coworkers, all the while, unintentionally exhausting their introvert neighbors.

The reality is that introverts and extraverts work differently and the environment they work in can ultimately affect their productivity. Here are some actionable tips to improve your company culture in a way that helps the introverted workers in your office.

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Recognition and Rewards Are Two Different Things

Recognition is mostly an intangible expression of acknowledgment and valuing of an individual or team. You give recognition when you recognize people for their positive behaviors, their personal effort, and any contributions they have made. Rewards , on the other hand, are tangible, monetary, or experiential items given to a person or team. Rewards are mostly given in return for reaching pre-set goals, a significant achievement, or some special service.

Both HR managers and team leaders can use rewards and recognition more effectively once they understand the similarities and the differences between the two concepts.

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Join us next week as we share more of our favorite articles. We’d also love to know what articles made your week and what topics you’d like us to talk about next week so we look forward to reading your comments below!

Happy weekend!

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