This week, I was honored to be included in a loveable group of yahoos – I mean, influencers – at Ultimate Software’s Connections Conference in Las Vegas. These people are leading the way in human resources and technology, and I’m lucky to call them friends.
The conference itself was really something. While Robin Roberts and John O’Leary’s keynotes were fantastic, it was Ultimate Chief Executive Officer Scott Scherr who left the biggest impact on me. Mr. Scherr’s general session did not focus on what was new or why his leadership has brought success to the company like how many other CEOs may have spent their time. Instead, he focused on his people. He went through a list of Ultipeeps who have made a difference. This list was impressive, even if he was slightly embarrassing a few of them.
But what really got me was how Mr. Scherr focused on their “People First” mantra as not just a mantra but a lifestyle. In a presentation to SHRM in 2009, Mr. Scherr said the following, “The measure of a company is how they treat their lowest paid employee.” In this year’s session, Mr. Scherr talked about how the character of the company relies on the character of its people. When you hire good people, you treat them well, they will take care of the 3,700 customers there at the conference and all those who were unable to attend. This is so true. Another (more lawyerly) way to look at this is when people are treated well, the compliance risks are significantly lower for an organization.
If you’d like to see the sessions where I presented, please see the links for employee communication (I start at 17:25) and women in leadership. The women in leadership session was made up of some fantastic women! I highly recommend spending some time to learn from them.