4 episodes

Problem Performers is a podcast about professionals who challenge the status quo at work. In each episode, HRuprise founder & CEO Rebecca Weaver tackles a topical workplace issue, from sexism to mental health to layoffs and more, from the perspective of a “problem performer” – someone who speaks out for change or gets fired trying.

Featuring special industry guests and provocative viewpoints aplenty, Problem Performers is a refreshingly honest takedown of traditional HR – and a celebration of the professionals who see a better way forward for all employees.

Problem Performers HRuprise

    • Business
    • 4.7 • 7 Ratings

Problem Performers is a podcast about professionals who challenge the status quo at work. In each episode, HRuprise founder & CEO Rebecca Weaver tackles a topical workplace issue, from sexism to mental health to layoffs and more, from the perspective of a “problem performer” – someone who speaks out for change or gets fired trying.

Featuring special industry guests and provocative viewpoints aplenty, Problem Performers is a refreshingly honest takedown of traditional HR – and a celebration of the professionals who see a better way forward for all employees.

    Benefits are the ultimate equalizer.

    Benefits are the ultimate equalizer.

    “My job is to make sure that people have equal access and equal outcomes,” says Cassandra Rose, HR benefits expert and partner at Meritarc. With over 15 years of experience in the HR field, Cassandra believes that HR professionals should go beyond aiming for what looks like equality on paper. Instead, they should aim for true equity, which she describes as ensuring that every employee, even those from the most marginalized populations, has equal access to benefits and equal outcomes from those benefits. 


    Cassandra began her HR journey as a temp and quickly became passionate about advocating for employees. She learned that there is often a large gap between what employees think they are entitled to and what they are actually entitled to. Now, Cassandra focuses on bridging those gaps by encouraging employees to push back and ask any questions they may have about company policies and their benefits. She stresses that employees actually hold a lot of power within a company when it comes to their benefits because they are the client in this situation. Much of an employee’s compensation goes towards their benefits, so they deserve to understand them just as much as they understand their salary.


    Tune into this week’s episode of Problem Performers as Cassandra Rose and host Rebecca Weaver dive deep into bridging the gap between HR departments and employees to make sure equity is achieved. Learn how to best navigate the ever-confusing employee handbook, how to approach an HR representative with your questions, and how to empower yourself as a benefits recipient so that you get the full compensation you’re entitled to.


     


    Quotes


    • “When I'm doing my diversity, equity, inclusion work, I actually say, ‘Focus on the most vulnerable. Focus on someone who identifies as LGBTQ. Focus on someone who is Black. Focus on the women.’ Because if you can meet their needs, everybody else gets better. If I'm increasing the outcome for the least-supported person, it's not like the most supported person in that framework gets less. They actually also get more.” (0:00-0:32)


    • “It wasn't until I hit benefits that I realized that it was the ultimate equalizer. Whether you're making $1 million a year or this was your first time ever having a job, no one really knew how 401(k)s worked. No one really understood the difference between a premium, your copay and your coinsurance. I literally had executives say, ‘Can I please carve 30 minutes on your calendar with my spouse so we could go through the benefits guide?’ And I'm like, this person's making four figures an hour, and they need my time to explain it to them. But so did the 23 year old. And that's when I was like, there has to be a better way.” (09:05-09:43) 


    • "32% of your compensation is dormant in your benefits. If you're not going to that dentist, if you're not going to that vision, then you might as well go to your manager and be like, 'I'm gonna save the company some money. Take 32% of my salary away.'" (11:01-11:14)


     


    Links


    Connect with Cassandra on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mscassandrarose/ 


    And on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/mscassandrarose/


     


    Connect with your own confidential HRuprise Coach at https://www.hruprise.com/


     


    For a transcript of this episode, visit www.hruprise.com/podcast/episode-03


     


    Follow us on social media: 


    • Twitter: https://twitter.com/hruprise


    • Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/hruprise/


    • Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HRuprise/


    • LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/hruprise/

    • 51 min
    Ash Eliot is making beer history.

    Ash Eliot is making beer history.

    “I wanted to create this platform and group where women can come together in safe spaces and they can network, they can find job opportunities, and just have an open dialogue,” says Ash Eliot, founder of Women of the Bevolution. With 3 years of experience in the beer industry (plus over a decade in the music industry) and a passion for promoting equal opportunity, Ash is no stranger to advocating for so-called “problem performers.”


    After working in the beer and alcohol world for a few years, Ash encountered some glaring issues with equal opportunity in the industry. Considering that many of the companies in question are run primarily by men, Ash decided to take matters into her own hands. She founded Women of the Bevolution, a hub for women in the beer industry looking for guidance and resources for fair treatment. After Brienne Allan, a brewer formerly of Notch Brewing, shared stories about women’s mistreatment in the beer industry via her Instagram @RatMagnet, Ash teamed up with Brienne to launch Brave Noise, a global beer collaboration working to create a safe and discrimination-free beer industry.


    Tune into this week’s episode of Problem Performers as Ash Eliot and host Rebecca Weaver dive deep into how women and people of color are marginalized and targeted when working in the beer industry. Learn more about why open dialogue is crucial for all brewery professionals, how an angel shot can save your life, and why it is crucial for consumers to understand a brewery’s code of conduct before becoming a customer.


     


    Quotes


    • “I wanted to kind of create this platform and group where women can come together in safe spaces and they can network, they can find job opportunities, and just have an open dialogue.” (03:39-03:50) 


    • "It's a lot of white males who started these businesses. They were homebrewing. They were like, ‘I'm just gonna start a business.’ But they don't know how to manage people, how to create a safe environment for women, how to support them, and have these resources and have, you know, code of conduct and an HR.” (10:19-10:38) 


    • “Women drink beer, women brew beer.  I mean, women do everything.” (13:30-13:38) 


    • “Consumers need to know what they're investing their money and time into. And hopefully it is into breweries that want to change and change this industry with us.” (16:52-16:59) 


    • “Women that are going into these workplaces to interview for jobs...you have a right to ask how this environment is. What is your code of conduct? Behind the scenes, is it inclusive? Are there other women working here? What is your HR policy in terms of reporting situations? These are all normal questions. We need to make this normal. It should be normal." (25:06-25:40) 


    • “In terms of the future, I'm really optimistic and hopeful that women will leave these toxic places if they're not getting the support they need and collab with other women, start their own business, find male allies, who are supportive. Eventually I want to be part of that. I want to support them.” (39:15-39:42) 


     


    Links


    Find Ash on Instagram @womenofthebevolution and at https://womenofthebevolution.com 


    Check out Brave Noise at https://www.bravenoisebeer.com  and read up at https://www.forbes.com/sites/taranurin/2021/07/14/ratmagnets-new-collaboration-brew-aims-to-make-the-beer-industrys-metoo-moment-last/


     


    Need support for a harassment situation as a customer or employee?


    Rape, Abuse, Incest National Network: RAINN.org (800-656-HOPE)


    Info about Angel Shot: pos.toasttab.com/blog/on-the-line/angel-shot


    Info about Ask for Angela: askforangela.org.uk/


     


    Connect with a coach at https://www.hruprise.com/


     


    For a transcript of this episode, visit www.hruprise.com/podcast/episode-02







    Follow us on social media: 


    • Twitter: https://twitter.com/hruprise


    • Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/hruprise/


    • Facebook: https://www.facebook.co

    • 43 min
    Amazon doesn’t want you to know your performance is a problem.

    Amazon doesn’t want you to know your performance is a problem.

    “As an employee, always put yourself first because no one else is going to,” says Chris Rutter, Global Human Resources Leader, Consultant & Coach. With over 16 years of experience in HR across a wide range of industries, Chris is no stranger to what makes a so-called “problem performer.”


    However, even Chris was shocked by a recent article in The Seattle Times titled “Amazon tells bosses to conceal when employees are on a performance management plan.” This article explains that managers at Amazon are instructed not to tell workers when they have been placed on Focus (Amazon’s version of a PIP) unless they explicitly ask. This policy helps Amazon meet its annual goal of around 6% “unregretted attrition,” or the percentage of employees that the company hopes to force out each year.


    Tune into this week’s episode of Problem Performers as Chris Rutter and host Rebecca Weaver dive deep into why Amazon's policy is messed up and how bosses OUGHT to be thinking about performance management. They also dissect the myth of the "corporate athlete," the dangers of black-and-white HR thinking, and outline the steps you can take as an employee when faced with the dreaded PIP.


     


    Quotes


    • “I’ve been in companies where I knew things weren’t going the way they should be going, but the person that I would need to go to as an HR professional, I didn’t trust. So, I’m stuck. What do I do? Is it worth risking my career, worth risking my position there? So, I ended up doing nothing.” (03:40-04:00)


    • “I think my initial reaction [to the Amazon article] was, ‘Wow, what a way to set up your employees to truly fail.’ Why don't we have a leadership team that is truly there for the employee? Maybe this employee isn't performing at his or her or their job because it's not the right fit. So is it necessarily a...performance improvement plan? Or could we have another conversation of finding a better fit, or the right fit, for that employee?” (07:35-08:05)


    • “If you’re placed on a PIP for 30 days, they want you out because it is incredibly difficult for somebody to turn around their performance within 60 or 90 days, certainly almost nearly impossible to turn around in 30 days.” (11:10-11:25)


    • “My own philosophy is to lead with transparency. If [an employee’s] performance is not where it should be, I should already be having those conversations to do my job as that person’s manager, to coach them up within their role….because whether my team performs well or not well is a direct reflection on me. So, I have to take full ownership and accountability for that.” (22:48-24:12)


    • “I do not think an employee should ever sign [a performance improvement plan] on the spot because if you pull me into an office and you’re telling me that I’m being placed on a PIP, I’m going to stop listening immediately after that and start thinking about, ‘What did I do wrong?’....Take that document back, really really understand what it’s telling you, where your opportunities are, and make sure that you have a very clear understanding of what that action plan is going to be and do you really believe that action plan is going to set you up to be successful.” (26:45-27:25) 


    • “I always encourage the manager [when placing an employee on a PIP]...to, at the end of the conversation when the meeting’s over, recap the conversation in an email and send it to the employee, so you’re both on the same page. If your manager’s not doing that, then you as an employee, I would recommend you do that.” (30:20-30:58)


     


    Links


    Find Chris on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/christophermrutter/ 


    Find Chris on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/imchrisrutter/


    Book Chris for coaching at https://app.hruprise.com/coach/chrisrutter 


     


    Read the original article about Amazon: https://www.seattletimes.com/business/amazon/amazon-tells-bosses-to-conceal-when-employees-are-on

    • 34 min
    Why ”Problem Performers?”

    Why ”Problem Performers?”

    “The term ‘problem performer’ can be used as a scapegoat to help a company evade accountability,” says host Rebecca Weaver, HRuprise Founder and CEO. As someone who has worked in HR for over twenty years, Rebecca didn’t fully understand the implications of the term “problem performer” until she was labeled as one. After being forced to quit her job while pregnant, Rebecca came to the unfortunate realization that as an HR insider, she had been complicit in reinforcing this harmful and toxic workplace culture without even knowing it. 


    According to Rebecca, the term “problem performer” is used by HR to describe an employee who isn’t meeting performance expectations. Because this label often reinforces manager bias, companies are regularly setting their employees up for failure. Rather than considering other factors such as incorrect job placements or poor management, companies rely on the “problem performer” label to excuse abuse in the workforce, particularly towards marginalized employees. That is why it is so crucial for people who have been labeled as “problem performers” to share their stories and fight for change.


    Tune into the premiere episode of Problem Performers to learn what a problem performer is, and how you, like Rebecca, can challenge work environments to implement lasting and meaningful change. 


     


    Quotes


    • “A ‘problem performer’ label can reinforce manager bias. It can set even high-potential employees up for failure, and it helps employers maintain a status quo that harms people. Most of the time, the people that it harms the most are marginalized employees.” (02:59-03:22)


    • “I had to tell my boss that my personal reputation was worth a lot more than any severance they could give me.” (15:12-15:20)


    • “The term ‘problem performer’ can be used as a scapegoat to help a company evade accountability.” (15:59-16:07)


    • “The concept of problem performer actually can deprive companies of their own high potential talent in the interest of maintaining the status quo.” (16:42-16:49)


    • “The label problem performer does not define you, your career, your potential, and certainly not your value.” (29:05-29:12)


    • “We [so-called problem performers] need to tell our stories because our perspective as outsiders and as people who present a problem to the company are really actually very valuable.” (29:35-29:45)


     


    Links


    Find your own independent HRuprise Coach at https://www.hruprise.com/


     


    For a transcript of this episode, visit www.hruprise.com/podcast/episode-00.


     


    Follow us on social media: 


    • Twitter: https://twitter.com/hruprise


    • Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/hruprise/


    • Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HRuprise/


    • LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/hruprise/

    • 35 min

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5
7 Ratings

7 Ratings

AliGauche ,

Timely, informative, inspiring

I am so excited to see this podcast out in the world—there has never been a more critical time to have these conversations publicly! HRuprise is really on the leading edge in the talent innovation space; this is the way forward toward better workplaces for all.

ScottsdaleShea ,

Wow!

This is exactly the kind of truth telling and story blueprint everyone should have. Navigating the complexities of these topics is never easy but the insights within really challenged my perspective and made me think about my approach. It’s a must listen!

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