[Opinion] Google’s Glass Problem is Your Problem Too

There’s currently no compelling reason for us to buy Google Glass.

There’s also no compelling reason (beyond the SEO game) for us to be involved in Google+.

There’s no compelling reason because the guys out at Mountain View haven’t given us one, other than the fact that they currently own all of Internet search worth talking about.

But, as the attention of the world shifts to mobile phone use, apps matter more than search, and Google will have one less compelling reason for us to be involved with them.

The utility of search, mobile, and even wearables is based upon the idea of resolving a need or a want that the customer has and then making the solution so attractive that we can’t help but use it.

However, as the web has matured, Google hasn’t and the utility of wearables really comes down to third party data gathering about users’ behaviors, antics and actions.

The much more compelling reason for us to buy Google Glass—or any other wearable—will be answered, not by Google, or Yahoo, or even Facebook, but by Big Data advocates and privacy hawks.

-Peace Be With You All-

Jesan Sorrells, MA
Principal Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
Email HSCT: jsorrells@hsconsultingandtraining.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HSConsultingandTraining
Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/Sorrells79
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jesansorrells/

“Opt-In” Networking

From banner ads that boast a .01% click-through rate to YouTube videos that offer the opportunity to “Skip This Ad” in 5…4…3…2…1…, interruptive marketing is becoming more and more desperate to get eyeballs onto content that isn’t interesting, engaging or intriguing.

OPT-IN NETWORKINGHow does that fact tie in with stalled job searches in a country with a labor force participation rate at around 60% and 92 million people not working?

Well, the bad news is that employers have HR departments made up of people and even they are becoming wiser to the interruptive tricks of the job search trade.

So, networking becomes more about developing relationships and seemingly menial work done well, rather than about being interruptive with a resume, cover letter and references.

How do you develop relationships with employers before they want to hire you?

You don’t.

You develop yourself first.

You volunteer at the local soup kitchen.

You shovel the old lady’s driveway next door.

You get up off the couch and start a blog, a Twitter account or a really interesting YouTube channel.

You take the part-time job that is “below you,” for minimum wage and perform at it like it’s the greatest full-time work you’ve ever had.

In a world where the hidden “opt-out” is becoming increasingly the “norm,” allowing others—particularly others with jobs, cash and referrals to throw around—to “opt-in” to you, by showcasing what you do, is the only way to go to get to where you want to be.

Otherwise, your resume is going in the HR trash bin faster than you can click on the “Skip Ad” now button on the bottom right hand side of your favorite YouTube video.

-Peace Be With You All-

Jesan Sorrells, MA
Principal Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
Email HSCT: hsconsultingandtraining@gmail.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HSConsultingandTraining
Twitter: www.twitter.com/Sorrells79
LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/jesansorrells/

[Opinion] Would You Like a Side of Mediation with That?

Mediation and sales have several things in common:

  • They both involve establishing trust right away.
  • They both involve starting from a referral from one or more of the parties.
  • They both involve establishing a relationship between the two parties and the mediator/s.

The key place where sales and mediation differ is that a sale is usually closed: Either the salesperson gets the order and gets paid, or the prospect gets the salesperson to go away.

Mediation relies on both parties having the autonomy to walk away. Sales involves parties being pressured (whether lightly or heavily) into making a decision to “buy” or “walk-away.”

The big takeaway form all of this is that if your career is in mediation, learning where to put pressure on versus where to ensure autonomy will ensure that each participant has a satisfactory outcome.

And that you get paid.

Active listening is a huge driver for both sales and mediation.

If you aren’t listing to what your customer is saying that they want—or the parties in the dispute are saying that they want—you’ll wind up going home.

Peace Be With You All-

Jesan Sorrells, MA

Principal Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
Email HSCT: jsorrells@hsconsultingandtraining.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HSConsultingandTraining
Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/Sorrells79
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jesansorrells/

Santa’s Accountability Problem

Trust during the holiday season is freely given. It must be something about the charitable feeling and spirit around the  month between the day after Thanksgiving and the day after Christmas.

Whatever the psychological, theological or emotional motive this feeling of trust  springs from, the public is sure to hear stories in the news about organizations (the Salvation Army), corporations (any retail giant) and governments (yes, I’m looking at YOU Healthcare.gov) abusing this trust for nefarious means.

It kind of puts in perspective what was said here and here this week; but bear our indulgence on this point for just a moment:

Trust requires that the giver and the receiver engage in a dance of vulnerability and responsibility.

The giver must be willing to put down cynicism and suspicion and the receiver must be accountable and responsible.

The charities and organizations that are doing best—both now and in previous holiday seasons—are those that focus on the intersection between quality, accountability, transparency and relationship.

When trust happens between the giver and the receiver, a relationship is built up over time that neutralizes deceit, suspicion, obfuscation and irresponsibility.

And that’s a process that’s even more scalable than the industrial based processes that got us to where we are now.

Remember, it took us 100 years to get to this point…it will take at least that long to get us back to sanity.

Are you, and what you are building, up to the challenge?

-Peace Be With You All-
Jesan Sorrells, MA
Principal Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
Email HSCT: hsconsultingandtraining@gmail.com

Towards A More Thankful Union

We here at the HSCT Communication Blog are all thankful this day for many things:
The country where we live,
The family that we have,
The connections we are about to make,
The business that we are growing,
The tools that we have to explore the world,
The intellect and science behind them,
The religiousity that allowed people to develop ideas,
The advancements in the world that feed more people well,
The times that are a changin’,
The peace we have an opportunity to build,
The relationships we have had a chance to build,
The connections that we have made,
The critics, naysayers and disbelievers that we have,
The “no’s,”
The “yes’s,”
The “maybe laters,”
The incredulity,
The pain
…and the promise…

-Peace Be With You All-
Jesan Sorrells, MA
Principal Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
Email HSCT: hsconsultingandtraining@gmail.com

[Opinion] Rendering Unto Peace

There is nothing more capitalistic and freedom loving than making peace.

Think about it.

Two people come together to agree (or disagree) on an issue.

The issue gets resolved, gets to stalemate or gets blown up, but no matter what happens, the people involved in the process (the warring parties and the mediator) get to participate together.

Managing conflict is a place where the capitalistic principle of work = pay should rule.

The principles of freedom and republican democracy work in conflict management as well, because all parties involved can make a choice, whether they want to participate or not, and to  get to resolution, everyone must learn and practice the principles of negotiation.

We here at HSCT grow weary of hearing political commentators and others talk about the fallacy of conflict resolution and of developing peace, while at the same time focusing on litigation, imprisonment, warfare and strife as the preferred way to go.

Jesus talked about peace. He also talked about money (check out Matthew 22:15-22 on this one).

When are we going to cease believing that making peace and making money are mutually exclusive?

-Peace Be With You All-

Jesan Sorrells, MA
Principal Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
Email HSCT: hsconsultingandtraining@gmail.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HSConsultingandTraining
Twitter: www.twitter.com/Sorrells79
LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/jesansorrells/

Know Your Role…

The traditional definition of being a “creative” is dead.

2001 Meets Planet of the Apes

Professionals and passionates in fields from nonprofit fundraising to sports celebrity, now describe themselves as being “creative.”
Being a “creative” has been co-opted by tech innovators and entrepreneurs.
The term has gradually transformed in meaning from defining those who toil at creating a sculpture, a painting, a drawing or a photograph to encompass anyone who is moderately skilled at being an outlier at what they are doing.
Marketers call themselves “creatives.” So do corporate executives.
Entertainers describe themselves as “creative” and even the RedBull Flutaug participants describe themselves as being a “creative” force for daring to do the impossible.
We might have made up that last part…
As a firm whose owner and founder has a background in the fine arts and who developed a former practice that involved design, color, line texture, emotional impact, subtlety and message, we wonder, here at Human Services Consulting and Training, how long will it take for everyone to describe themselves—and the work that they do—as “creative?”
We aren’t wondering to pick a fight or out of a pique, but instead are focused on a reality: In a world that is increasingly tolerant, supportive and mindful of the great impact of “the weird” (which is what being a “creative” used to be all about) where is the room for those who are in conflict with the “creative?”
What happens when the person who doesn’t view their role in an organization as being “creative” (but instead views it as being “just something I ‘do’ from 8-4 or 9-5 to pay my rent”) gets into a disagreement with those who view EVERY role as having the potential to be “creative?”
This is an expanded version of our article (link here) about who will hire the jerks and the bullies in a world where “the weird” is tolerable and the people who seek to limit or hold it back are socially (and sometimes legally) sanctioned.
How do you empower those who do not believe that their actions and lives have a drop of possibility of being “creative” in an organization, a society or a culture and give them the tools to describe themselves, their roles and their lives as “creative?”
-Peace Be With You All-
Jesan Sorrells, MA
Principal Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
Email HSCT: hsconsultingandtraining@gmail.com

[Advice] On Grit

I hear that he is a man with true GRIT.” – Mattie Ross, True Grit, 1969

Grit doesn’t get talked a lot about in a society that prizes the easy and the compromising.

It is tough to be uncompromising in such a societal structure.

However, to paraphrase from the film Braveheart, it is easy to admire uncompromising men, without actually doing the hard work of joining them in their pursuit of doing the hard thing.

The definition of grit is clear:

  • Sand, gravel
  • A hard sharp granule (as of sand); also :material (as many abrasives) composed of such granules
  • Any of several sandstones the structure of a stone that adapts it to grinding
  • The size of abrasive particles usually expressed as their mesh
  • Firmness of mind or spirit: unyielding courage in the face of hardship or danger
  • Capitalized: a Liberal in Canadian politics

The fourth definition is the clearest one for our purposes here.

Grit has come to the forefront in the last few years as the idea of inherent talent has begun to take a beating from the likes of evolutionary biologists and post-post-modern philosophers.

In its clearest form, grit becomes a holdover from a simpler time, when talent was not as valued in the Western world. Instead, traits such as perseverance, persistence, courage and spirit were once lauded as virtues.

As the 20th century rolled on by, and as we entered the vaunted “Atomic Age,” grit became valued less and less.

And, with the rise in the latter part of the 20th century, of computing, analytics, the Internet, and other faster and faster methods of accomplishing what used to be slow, and grinding (like an abrasive piece of…well…gravel) grit was less and less talked considered as an important character trait.

But, my how the worm turns: As the holes in our education system have become more and more exposed in the opening years of the new Millennium, grit has made a comeback–becoming a touchstone for encouraging children to develop perseverance, resilience, persistence and to avoid quitting early.

But grit is still scary. Deep in our heart of hearts, we would rather succeed through ease of talent versus the scary, hard thing of work, taking hits and developing a thick skin.

The story we consistently tell ourselves about resiliency, persistence and grit is one of no fun, delayed glory and little riches.

In a world of instant connections and instant gratification, who wouldn’t quit and avoid conflicts in their lives if that were the alternative?

But maybe, that’s the only alternative that matters. Maybe the only alternative is to pick a position, be uncompromising, and grind it out.

Maybe the only alternative is to be a person with true grit.

-Peace Be With You All-

Jesan Sorrells, MA
Principal Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
Email HSCT: jsorrells@hsconsultingandtraining.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HSConsultingandTraining
Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/Sorrells79
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jesansorrells/