38 episodes

At RedThread, we love our data, but we know that what we remember are stories. That’s why, together with Chris Pirie of The Learning Futures Group, Dani Johnson and Stacia Garr started this podcast to hear great workplace stories from HR thinkers, writers, leaders, and practitioners. We wanted to create a space for them to tell their stories about what works in the workplace, what they’ve learned, and what they hope to see in the future. We hope you find it inspirational, motivational, a touch irreverent—and fun!

Workplace Stories by RedThread Research Stacia Garr

    • Business
    • 5.0 • 15 Ratings

At RedThread, we love our data, but we know that what we remember are stories. That’s why, together with Chris Pirie of The Learning Futures Group, Dani Johnson and Stacia Garr started this podcast to hear great workplace stories from HR thinkers, writers, leaders, and practitioners. We wanted to create a space for them to tell their stories about what works in the workplace, what they’ve learned, and what they hope to see in the future. We hope you find it inspirational, motivational, a touch irreverent—and fun!

    Adventures in Hybrid Work: Forget Balanced Work-Life And Think More Integrated, w/Lydia Wu, Panasonic

    Adventures in Hybrid Work: Forget Balanced Work-Life And Think More Integrated, w/Lydia Wu, Panasonic

    In this, our final episode for the Adventures in Hybrid Work Season, we end strong with a great sit-down with people analytics innovator and Head of Talent Analytics & Transformation at Panasonic USA, Lydia Wu. It’s the right last conversation for now on this important topic, we think, as Lydia gives us so much frontline reporting on the key issues we’ve identified in our conversations, like the importance of data and really listening to what your workforce actually wants in terms of return to office instead of what you think they want, which we’ve heard from others—but also topics we maybe didn’t get so much on, like the importance of the DEIB factor in Hybrid, and what we should be doing for managers in all this, not just the main employee base. The fact that Panasonic—which really isn’t just ‘the microwave people’—has such a wide spread of job roles, both desked and deskless, is also really important to think about. It all matters—and as Dani says in the episode, maybe it’s time to stop saying ‘Hybrid Work,’ because now it’s all now just… what Work is?

    • 50 min
    Adventures in Hybrid Work: Is Mentoring The Key To Hybrid? w/WM’s Phil Rhodes

    Adventures in Hybrid Work: Is Mentoring The Key To Hybrid? w/WM’s Phil Rhodes

    In February last year, this week’s guest, Phil Rhodes, Head of Learning & Leadership Development at WM--which you may now better as Waste Management, and who are the very helpful people who handled your garbage all the way through Lockdown—was not long in post when his suggestion of a coaching program was met with the observation, ‘Phil, trash companies don’t do coaching.’ Well, maybe they should all start, as the first rollout got a 96% approval rating with either ‘life-changing’ or ‘valuable’ level ratings. And as you’ll discover on this episode, mentoring and coaching, at multiple levels, for both truck driver and regional manager, emerged as a transformational tool for the company. Was it just a way to get through the pandemic, or perhaps the key way Hybrid can be made to land for everyone? We’ll make you listen to the episode to get the answer—but you’ll not hate us for that, as along the way you’ll get so much great insight on everything from the history of Southern Africa to new ways of thinking about effective frontline worker support. Warning: no, they didn’t train new folks how to drive the big vehicles online. At least… tune in to find out more!

    • 53 min
    Adventures in Hybrid Work: From Human To Social Capital, w/Michael Arena, formerly AWS & GM

    Adventures in Hybrid Work: From Human To Social Capital, w/Michael Arena, formerly AWS & GM

    This week’s guest is Michael Arena, who brings the unique perspective of leading talent development and management for not just major New Economy global brands like Amazon Web Services, but also stalwart Old Economy blue chips like General Motors and Bank of America. Along the way, he’s also done serious research and training in network analysis and the power of social science to truly understand what’s happening with today’s corporations. That combination of frontline management and crisis response and a lens for viewing all our recent challenges in people practices, gives him, we’d argue, the right to be heard on what he thinks is really happening out there for both individuals (and especially a voice often left out of the Future of Work conversation, the leader) and teams as we progress through what he jokes is both, Dickens-wise, ‘the best and the worst’ times to be in work right now. If you’re still sceptical, a few minutes on his evidence of bridging and bonding social capital and its impact on the Hybrid Workspace we’re seeing evolve around us will change your mind: and we say that as Data ‘Til I Die! converts. Social capital is a tool, we predict, that you’ll soon be using as much as Michael is in his new role in Connected Commons.

    • 54 min
    Adventures in Hybrid Work: Doubling Down On Trust, w/RJ Milnor, Uber

    Adventures in Hybrid Work: Doubling Down On Trust, w/RJ Milnor, Uber

    If there’s one word that sums up this week’s episode, it’s conscious listening. Yes, that’s two. But it’s actually the on-ramp to the real word we mean, and which is fast emerging as the theme of this Season 5 of Workplace Stories as it evolves: intentionality. That’s because our guest--RJ Milnor, Global Head of People Analytics and Chief People Data Officer at Uber--says it was conscious listening and thinking by he and his team about the WHY of his company was asking people to work for them, as opposed to where, that helped him craft a working Hybrid Work policy that works. Which, of course, is also another way of describing being intentional about RTO. We love RJ’s deep-thinking approach to these big questions--his commitment to listening to the people he’s trying to help, his rigor around tools and data, his willingness to experiment and flex. And we think you will too--plus get some clues about how to start the road to unlocking the Hybrid Work puzzle box from today. Hint: get conscious listening… and then get intentional.

    • 53 min
    Adventures in Hybrid Work: Restoring Work-Life Balance Through Hybrid, w/Microsoft's Dawn Klinghoffer

    Adventures in Hybrid Work: Restoring Work-Life Balance Through Hybrid, w/Microsoft's Dawn Klinghoffer

    Today, we hear from an HR leader at the absolute heart of the Hybrid evolution, Dawn Klinghoffer, Vice President of the HR Business Insights team at Microsoft. Dawn’s really helping set the agenda of what gets called in the show the ‘Pandora’s Box’ of workplace change the pandemic is sparking--which she sees, not as a source of trouble and confusion, as in the Greek myth, but as a way to get energy, meaning and empowerment placed at the center of every employee’s experience. Pandora-like, though, the changes Dawn wants to see can spark fear and disruption--fears which she discusses frankly and openly, and which she also so brilliantly encapsulated in a recent landmark HBR piece. We also hear about her fresh thinking on people analytics, data, and the employee-manager relationship, as well as practical tips on making Hybrid start working in your environment. To us—and, we think, by the end of this 56-plus minutes—Dawn's work here is a great example of HR is really for: to help us all be the best humans we can be. Worth your time.

    • 56 min
    Adventures in Hybrid Work: A New Work Operating System, w/HR Thinker John Boudreau

    Adventures in Hybrid Work: A New Work Operating System, w/HR Thinker John Boudreau

    Is it time to retire the concept of a job? Is it holding us all back—especially if we really want to make Hybrid Work a success? That’s a new, and we think highly useful, concept from today’s guest, author, academic and futurist John Boudreau. In the episode, John tells us how we want to move away from thinking about work as one job and job holder at a time and one degree at a time, to a system that allows the parts to freely connect, so tasks and projects can connect to atomized or deconstructed worker capabilities like Skills, which can be gained through an atomized set of things like experiences, partial degrees or credentials. John—a well-known HR scholar who’s Professor Emeritus of Management and Organization and a Senior Research Scientist with the Center for Effective Organizations at the Marshall School of Business, University of Southern California—says his thinking here is that we’ve been using the wrong unit of analysis in ‘the job,’ and that a new operating system of work is needed that should be instead be based on deconstructed elements of a role in terms of tasks rather than being based primarily on the job as the atomic unit of HR analysis. As you’re about to find, this is all set forth in his new book with fellow researcher Ravin Jesuthasan, Work Without Jobs, whose top concepts we try and explore, like what it might be like to ‘melt’ a job down to see what it’s made of and who could do bits of it instead, as well as a very new way of thinking about ice cubes. We’re so honored John agreed to be our lead-off guest for the Season, as we think it identifies many key themes and frees up some real opportunities for fresh Hybrid Work thinking we’ll all find useful. Just be careful you don’t melt while listening.

    • 1 hr

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
15 Ratings

15 Ratings

007mbc ,

Brilliant, Accessible, and Actionable

Smart. Just smart people talking about L

Leila103 ,

Leading edge of people practices

Fascinating discussions with people at the leading edge of people practices. I find the current season really interesting – how to integrate diversity

Traveller098 ,

Fresh and insightful

If there is one podcast you listen to in the human capital research space, make it this one.

Dani, Stacia and Chris bring honest, bold and unique perspectives on critical workplace topics. Their conversations are lively, and packed with insights. Plus, features a stellar guest list of movers and shakers. Such a great resource to keep pace with the industry. Highly recommend!

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