2018 Voice of the Strategic Human Capital Interest Group Effort Summary Report

In the fourth quarter of 2018 the Strategic Human Capital Interest Group (SHC IG) engaged a series of interviews and interactions with our members in order to understand how we can best serve our members in addition to our efforts at the annual SMS conferences.  

We sought to interview as many of our 276 IG members as possible.  Our team of 24 interviewers successfully interviewed (in person, by phone, or through email) 78 members for a total response rate of 28.2%.  The primary purpose of the interview approach was to engage human-to-human interactions and conversations and determine how to best serve the membership.  

Many members never responded to our interviewers, and some expressed a lack of interest in being actively involved in our IG (they seemed to be more interested in passive involvement).  

The following pages provide a high level summary of the interview data and results, but we are happy to share more detailed information and/or results with those who are interested.  

Our deep and sincere thanks to Scott Bentley, Christiane Bode, Rocio Bonet, Rhett Brymer, Vanessa Burbano, Matt Call, Ben Campbell, Seth Carnahan, Clint Chadwick, AJ Chauradia, Ormonde Cragun, Alia Crocker, Gina Dokko, Pranav Garg, Tim Gubler, Ben King, John Mawdsley, Dana Minbaeva, Shad Morris, Greg Reilly, Marketa Rickley, Dorothea Roumpi, Mike Ulrich and Ingo Weller for their volunteer efforts as interviewers.  Each interviewer received a list of around 10 IG members and reached out to interview them. It was a significant investment on behalf of our IG!

We also acknowledge the work of Rocio Bonet, Vanessa Burbano, Alia Crocker, JR Keller, and Ulya Tsolmon in helping to review and make sense of the survey results.  

We were amazed to find that 56.3% of our participants expressed a desire to help or serve the IG.  Thank you for making our IG great!

A strong majority of respondents indicated a desire for additional mentoring within the IG and there was a general positive reaction to the idea of webinars and podcasts.  In particular, PhD students seemed very interested in Webinars and Podcasts while junior faculty seemed more interested in mentoring. A consistent theme in the comments was a desire for reading lists that help to orient people who are new to the field and/or profession to our seminal readings and core theoretical perspectives.  Another consistent theme was a desire for more focused mini-conferences and extensions.

Our interpretation of the survey results have led to the following plan of action moving forward:

  1. Website improvement - all of the key engagement efforts will require a more robust and flexible web interface that will enhance both content delivery AND interaction.  Once we move beyond a static SHC website we will be able to ramp up the creation, housing and delivery of these other efforts.

  2. Looking for successful mentorship models - While many people expressed a desire for mentoring, the suggested models, approaches and logics varied significantly.  No dominant mentoring model emerged from the comments. Accordingly, we are forming a small taskforce to investigate successful mentoring models in academia to see what lessons we can learn from others.  We hope to find and implement a successful mentoring program in the coming 1-2 years.

  3. SMS Minneapolis Extension - Based on the strong appetite for more focused conferences we are now actively planning an SHC extension for Minneapolis.  Details will come soon.

  4. Webcasts and Podcasts - We will start by trying to take advantage of activities that are already happening (e.g. SHC sessions in PhD seminars, small conferences and/or talks/seminars) in our community to curate content that may be useful for our community.  We will see what we can learn from these initial experiments.

  5. SHC Reading Lists - Many of our participants indicated a desire for reading lists that outline seminal readings as well as current research related to the field.  We will start reaching out to scholars who have taught SHC seminars and curate a reading list that we can share through our (hopefully) new website.  

If any of these initiatives or next steps are particularly interesting to you and you would like to be involved, please let one of the SHC IG Leadership Team Members know of your interest.  

Key themes included:

  • Mini-conferences and extensions (including a more global presence)

  • SHC reading lists (core, seminal, new, cutting edge, cross-disciplinary, etc.)

  • Platforms for sharing teaching and other materials related to SHC, building knowledge repositories

  • Help with the Strategy-HR Intersection (e.g. training us to be better reviewers at the intersection)

Section 3: Focused Questions on Potential Initiatives

Please see below.