Tag Archives: Mobility

This leadership trait will separate great leaders from good leaders in any company!

Several years ago, I was tasked with improving our quality at a small moving and storage company in Dallas, Texas due to low quality scores and continuous claims that was costing the company significant dollars coming straight from profits. In fact, the corporate office sent their quality team to meet with us and advised that we would be probation until the scores improved while I was enjoying my first week as the new operations leader. This was a day I will never forget. I immediately began thinking… “Did I make the right choice joining this company?”.  It was clear that the company lacked a training and development program and I needed to put a plan in motion… quickly.

The first thing I did was hire an operations leader that could help me train our team, as bruce_on truck original picturewell as hire, train, and motivate a staff to help us sustain a quality program for our customers and stakeholders. During the first week of hiring Hector, I knew that this wasn’t just any operations leader that could move the needle on our quality, this was someone that was going to move people.

So how did I know? He had passion…

When Hector arrived, we discussed implementing a training program for our moving crews. He immediately scheduled a training session. When I arrived at work the next day for training, I noticed he had chairs all lined up with the training materials… But there was something more that stood out. Hector also had purchased every moving crew member “A BROOM” to make sure crew members kept things clean. When they finish the moving job, they were expected to remove the trash for a clean home. When they leave the truck at the end of the day, they were to make sure it was left clean. When they walked into work each day, they were expected to be in uniform with a positive attitude. Hector wanted to make sure each employee understood the expectations, which was to have a “clean image” for excellence and to instill a sense of ownership in each team member.

When someone had passion, Hector knew it… and would do everything he could to develop that person for success! So, what is passion? It is simply caring about the job you are hired to do, as well as caring for the team members around you. It is taking ownership in everything you do. When you have passion, you are saying… I really care about this, so let’s make it the best we can for others to enjoy along the way.

I learned many things from Hector as a young leader including being a better leader myself from just being around him. His passion was infectious in business, and in his personal life. He taught me that when you have passion for something, you can move the needle in every situation, and most importantly, you can move the needle that will move peoples hearts…. simply because you care!

When you have positive passionate team members, you will experience excellent quality across all areas of your company! … but what about when you don’t have passionate team members? Well, then it will be time to do what Hector suggests… Get out the broom and start cleaning for success!

Call to Action: Do you have people with passion in your company. Find out what makes them go and then surround yourself, as well as your team members around them for success. It will fuel the fire for tremendous growth!

Quote of the week… “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” (Jim Rohn)  How passionate are you?

This has been A Relocation Minute on “passion makes the difference” with Bruce Book Cover Find Your Lane FRONTWaller, for more information, call 972-389-5673, or email bwaller@goarmstrong.com or check out my social media Facebook and Twitter page.

Also, check out www.BruceWaller.com for review my latest leadership book “Find Your Lane” on sale at Amazon, or Barnes and Noble. Available on Kindle edition too!

What gauges are you watching this summer?

If someone asked you which dashboard gauges on your vehicle were most important, you would probably say the speedometer and fuel gauge. Can you imagine driving your car without knowing how fast you were going, or how much gas you had in the tank?

What about oil level and tire pressure? Thankfully our check engine light on the dashboard appears when there seems to be trouble ahead. These gauges are critical to helping us maintain the health of our vehicles so we can travel safely each day to our destination.

Though we don’t have physical gauges to tell us when we need to refuel or fix something in our professional and personal lives, there are certain indicators or gauges we can look to on our hypothetical dashboards.

In relocation, we look to on-time pickup and deliveries by our van operators, survey bruce_on truck original pictureaccuracy for the moving estimate, and quality scores for best customer experience to just name a few. I know recruiters that focus on time to fill job requisitions, HR leaders that focus on engagement, and sales professionals that focus on the number of calls made each day.

Establishing a few gauges to focus on can help increase your chances of success. Such gauges can help you see when something isn’t working for you and when it’s time to make some changes. It doesn’t matter if you’re in an entry level role or part of the senior executive leadership team. To stay aligned with your business goals, you need to keep an eye on your personal dashboard.

Here are a few gauges (trends) to watch when relocating your candidates this summer:

  1. Tax Reform is here and companies will spend approx. 50% more for the household goods move. The household goods move averages can be as much as purchasing a new car…which is about 10-20% of the total relocation, so be sure to budget for the gross up when planning for business unit leaders.
  2. If the candidate has a home to sell, you can offset this cost by considering a home sale tax program such as a BVO (Buyer Value Option). This is a favorable tax savings program that can save the company on the tax gross up… which could be as much as $35,000-$40,000 savings on a $1,000,000.00 home value!
  3. Household goods moves require significant more lead time in the summer to reserve pack and load dates, especially in the northeast as well as some DTS (Difficult to Service) areas. Most states require 12 days, but some areas are closer to 21 days. Advise your business unit leaders, recruiters, and the relocating family.
  4. The small shipment container model is becoming very popular because of one day preferred delivery for candidates. This also eliminates the candidate from having to drive a moving truck. If your candidate has a small amount of items to move, ask about this program before you give them money or advise them on self moving.

…and most importantly, remember the best relocation programs have great partners. This is because there is an investment in the relationship which creates consistent dialogue from each party throughout the year.  I call this “investing in your people zone”. This is the best approach to keeping an eye on all of your relocation dashboard gauges which will ultimately bring the best experience for all of your candidates relocating this summer! Invest in your partnership and make it a win-win-win for everyone!

For more on mobility trends… Check out WorldwideERC website

Call to Action: Reach out to your relocation partner to schedule 30 – 45 minutes to review your program to make sure you are in alignment with your company goals and candidate experience this summer. If you don’t have an established program, develop one with a trusted partner. The cost is minimal and the return is significant for both you and the candidate relocating. 

Quote of the Week…  “What gets measured, gets done.” Peter Drucker

This has been A Relocation Minute on “Summer trends in June 2018” with Bruce  Book Cover Find Your Lane FRONTWaller, for more information, call 972-389-5673, or email bwaller@goarmstrong.com or check out my social media Facebook and Twitter page.

Also, check out www.BruceWaller.com for review my latest leadership book “Find Your Lane” on sale at Amazon!

5 reasons to register for Americas Mobility Conference in Dallas!

In Chapter 10 of my book “Find Your Lane”, I talk about “Maintaining Your Vehicle” which is about the importance of investing in yourself. To grow your organization, you need to grow your people, and to grow your people starts with growing yourself! Some of the areas to help you grow include personal exercise, reading, listening to audio books and podcasts, as well as attending industry conferences. This is all part of a career “GPS” system (Grow, Plan, and Share) that will help you navigate change on your leadership journey.

If you are in HR, Talent Acquisition, or Mobility, then you have experienced “change” and the 2018 Americas Mobility Conference is coming to Dallas just in time for YOU… In less than 30 days, WorldwideERC America’s Conference will be setting up at the Gaylord Texan in Grapevine, Texas bringing together some of the best of the best talent to share mobility practices that will help you engage and shape tomorrows relocating talent.

Here are just a few reasons why you should consider attending this year – especially if you live in the DFW area…

  1. Corporate Registration is FREE for first time attendees. If you’ve never attended, and budgets are part of the reason, this is an wonderful opportunity for you!
  2. Expert Panelists will share strategy and best practices to help you drive your mobility program with purpose!
  3. Certification credits offered to keep your professional designation(s) up to date.
  4. Marketplace exhibitors will share the latest offerings in the areas of home marketing assistance, corporate housing, household goods move, reporting, and more!
  5. Expand your network! This is a great opportunity to meet other practitioners in mobility to exchange ideas and be a resource for future needs.

Check out WorldwideERC’s for more conference information on keynotes, foundation activities, and more reasons to attend AMC 2018! While you are there, browse through the recently redesigned site to see other additions such as trends,  bench marking, articles and more…

WorldwideERC Americas Mobility Conference Website

Quote of the week: “Fear Freezes Us, Being Bold Frees Us!” Peggy Smith, CEO and President, WorldwideERC

Call to Action: Register for the conference and share this information with colleagues and business partners. Also, reach out to your partners to find out about other events that might help you engage with some of the best of the best in mobility. You will be glad you did! Let me know if you are going too… I hope to see you there!

This has been A Relocation Minute on “Are you registered WorldwideERC Americas Mobility Conference” with Bruce Waller, social media Facebook and Twitter page.

Also, check out http://www.BruceWaller.com for review my latest leadership book “Find Your Lane” on sale at Amazon, or Barnes and Noble. Available on Kindle edition too!

2018 Texas Relocation Network (TRN) Conference Takeaways

I recently attended TRN’s annual Texas Relocation Network Conference which was held in The Colony, Texas. More than 100 relocation professionals traveled to north Texas to hear about the latest trends in relocation, and to network with some of the best of the best in mobility. TRN did not disappoint as they provided a great keynote speaker to share perspective from a mortgage lens, corporate relocation panels, and speakers to inspire attendees during the conference. The theme this year was Partners in Progress: Collaboration, Motivation, and Innovation.

Here are a few of my takeaways to share with others:

Scott Eggen, EVP PrimeLending kicked off the conference sharing perspective on relocation in north Texas and surrounding states:

  • Current demand will carry new construction thru 2021
  • Lack of labor holding back new housing, and driving prices up.
  • Lumber is at its highest cost of all time.
  • Mortgage rates expected to increase up to 5% by 2020.

COLLABORATION
Corporate Panel led by Cartus, OEG, Aires, and Toyota discussed Group Moves:

  • Policy was created or modified for group move.
  • Bus tours can be very challenging due to delays.
  • Special needs children can be a challenge for family relocating.
  • Geographic area needs to be considered when helping family search for home.
  • Other factors include weather (Oklahoma) and property taxes (Houston)
  • Group move conversations should be started early with providers.

MOTIVATION
Bruce Waller, VP Armstrong Relocation and author of “Find Your Lane” presented “Find Your Lane: Change your GPS and Experience Success”

  • Maintain your vehicle by investing in yourself
  • Plan your road map through goal setting
  • Take the The Carpool Lane and expand your network

INNOVATION
Corporate Panel led by Acosta, Shell, and American Heart Association

  • Chabot’s, Machine Learning, & Artificial intelligence leading the way for talent acquisition
  • Employment Branding is critical (Social media aggregation)
  • Sourcing strategy should include texting recruits
  • Permanent Solutions for temporary assignments makes a difference for Shell in West Tx
  • Its more than housing: Safety and dangerous roads can be a factor in rural areas

Petey Parker closed the conference with an inspiring presentation to encourage everyone to “Write Your Story”!

THANK YOU to everyone involved for making this another great conference!

Until next time… Be Partners in Progress!

Call to Action: Check out Texas Relocation Network for more information. You can also check out other relocation education at North Texas Relocation Professionals or WorldwideERC. Let me know if you have any questions about these groups or how to get involved. Reach out and “Partner for Progress”!

Quote of the Week… “Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.” (Abraham Lincoln)

This has been A Relocation Minute on “TRN Conference 2018 Takeaways” with Bruce Waller, For more information, call 972-389-5673, or email bwaller@goarmstrong.com or check out our my social media Facebook and Twitter page.

Also, check out www.BruceWaller.com for review my latest leadership book “Find Your Lane” on sale at Amazon or Barnes and Noble. Also available on Kindle!

5 C’s you need to know when relocating your employees.

When moving your employees, it is important to help them understand the valuation coverage protection that will be included for their household goods move. One benefit of a partnership with the moving provider is the “full replacement valuation coverage” clause that is included in the partnership service agreement.

According to the American Moving and Storage Association, 80% or more (4 out of 5) of household goods moves have no claim filed which has been consistent for more than a decade. Most household moves go very well, but when there is damage during the move, it is important for the moving provider to respond quickly to help the employee get this settled as soon as possible so they can focus on settling their family in the new city during the transition. 

The next time you need to explain the definition of the valuation coverage to your team, always refer to the 5 C’s:

“Valuation is Coverage for household goods while they are in Care, Custody, and Control of the Carrier (Moving Provider).”

International household goods moves require the employees to complete a separate valued inventory to determine the replacement value of the shipment

Other items that can be added to the valuation coverage during the move include pairs and sets, and mechanical malfunction. Be sure and discuss with your moving provider other coverage’s recommended for your employee relocation. This is another great way to elevate the experience for your employees and give them peace of mind before moving their most personal possessions to the new location.

Call to action: Ask your relocation partner about valuation coverage for your employee household goods moves. Many times, a partnership agreement will include full replacement valuation coverage at no additional extra cost. This will give both you and your employees peace of mind when moving the household goods.

“You can’t build a reputation on what you are going to do.” – Henry Ford

This has been “A Relocation Minute” on Valuation Coverage with Bruce Waller, For more information, call 972-389-5673, or email bwaller@goarmstrong.com or check out our my social media facebook and twitter page.

• LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/in/brucewaller/
• Twitter too https://twitter.com/BruceWaller
• Facebook https://www.facebook.com/brucewwaller

Meet Peggy Smith, Worldwide ERC® President and CEO. BeALifter Leadership Series #4: 10 questions with Bruce Waller

BeALifter Leadership Series: Sharing Leadership Lessons with Bruce Waller…

Jim Rohn once said, “Your success in the next 5 years will be determined by the books you read and the people you meet.”

This is a testimony to my personal leadership growth over the past 20 years. I continue to learn each day by connecting with some of the most talented people in business. In this series, I want to introduce you to leaders that will share challenges, successes, and perspective to help you grow on your journey as a business leader or in your personal life. So let’s get started…

Today, we are going to hear from Peggy Smith, SCRP, SGMS-T , Worldwide ERC® President and CEO. I met Peggy about 10 years ago when attending a national relocation conference in Dallas before her current leadership role. She is making impact for so many in the relocation industry with her leadership approach which includes being authentic, caring, interested, visionary, and strategic. She is someone that is making a difference in the talent management mobility space all over the world and you will learn some of the reasons why as you read her responses below…

Now, let’s hear from Peggy… Peggy Smith 2016 Headshot 4-2016

1. Where did you grow up?
I grew up in Pittsburgh, PA and Danville, KY.

2. How did you get started in business/career?
I had moved to Los Angeles, CA and was working for RR Donnelley, the communications and print company. I actually started off bagging mail! RR Donnelley gave me a great business foundation, because I was exposed to so many different areas. I worked my way up through magazine bindery operations to data processing. Then I became a production planner for pre-press, press, and bindery; moved into customer service; and transitioned to sales, offering software packaged solutions for all OEM products distributed in the APAC region.

3. Do you remember a challenge or life lesson that you had to overcome early in your career which made you a better leader?
I was working for someone whom I really enjoyed as my boss, and we also became great friends. Along the way, there was a situation that came up: I requested the opportunity to go to part-time so that I could go back to school to get my MBA – and around that same period, another employee requested part-time after having a baby. She was permitted to transition to part-time, but I was not. I’m sure there were strong business reasons for this outcome, but I was hurt, and eventually, I left the company. However, I wanted to understand it – and once I got over the bad feelings that lingered, I was able to put this in perspective. I learned that it’s important to enjoy your coworkers and direct reports, but it’s also important to know the difference between friendship and management, for both employees and managers. And there’s one more thing I learned from this experience: your best friendships are the ones that grow with you. My former boss and I both learned that we could keep the connection that we valued so highly; today, she is still one of my closest friends.

4. What was that moment when you knew that you had found your lane, your purpose?
From Donnelley, I went to Microsoft, a company that as we all know drives for results – it was a dynamic environment, full of opportunity. Eventually, I landed in a mobility-related position, and got my first sense of the possibilities in our industry. Then I was offered a double promotion – but it meant I’d be making a decision to go back into sales. The chance to move up two levels was not a common event at Microsoft, and might have been an easy choice for some, but I couldn’t ignore the hold that mobility had on me. I loved what I was doing, and wanted to know more and do more. That’s when I decided to go all in – in 2004, I studied and sat for my CRP® designation, started volunteering on committees and task forces, was fortunate to be recruited for the Board of Directors, and in time, had the honor of serving as President and Chairman.

5. What is your most favorite achievement in your current role?
I like seeing what Oprah calls a “full circle moment.” When I came to Worldwide ERC® as a newly minted CEO, I didn’t fully understand what it would take to transition from my Microsoft management mindset to lead a membership association staff. I made mistakes; I didn’t understand how very deeply culture can be rooted, and how much it can impact even seemingly simple transitions and how people communicate with each other. I tore a lot of muscle! Now that I’ve gained more understanding, and found my stride – while I won’t say my journey is complete – I am watching our team flourish, and that’s a pleasure to see.

6. Is there any one person that inspired or mentored you along the way?
Aside from my husband Greg, I would name two people – Bill Graebel, CEO of Graebel Companies, and my former Worldwide ERC® colleague, Anita Brienza. Bill has been a great mentor to me and is my “go to” for guidance in business; in organizational strategy; in seeing the big picture. Anita has been a trusted advisor to me in the “people zone:” she helps me understand some of my blind spots when it comes to relationship-building, and provides communications coaching for the best approach and outcome to a situation. As leaders, we sometimes lose the people we might have sought out and confided in along the way because we are moving into different opportunities, yet we often need a good sounding board more than ever as we take on more responsibility. No matter where we are in our careers, we all need mentors and guides who help us become the best versions of ourselves.

7. Do you have a saying or mantra that you live by?
I often say that every day I get up on this side of Mother Earth, the rest is easy! It is a privilege to have good work and good health – I don’t take that lightly. I have been told that I always seem happy and cheerful. I do feel that way – I love what I’m doing, I work with some of the finest minds in our industry, I have a great family, and I believe that the work we are doing in the talent management space is making the world a better place for businesses and employees.

8. What book are you reading or audio to help grow your leadership right now?
When I first answered this question, I jokingly said “Dr. Seuss,” but the truth is – and I think this is the reality for many of us – no one book or presentation grows our leadership… they all do. We are all exposed to so much amazing information, and it is so easily accessible, we can be trained and coached by some of the masters in a way that wasn’t possible just a few short years ago.

9. Can you share any of your daily disciplines that help you stay focused as a leader?
Two things come to mind. First, I am accomplished at “triage”- I’m able to quickly assess what needs my immediate attention, be it an email or a request, and what can wait for a less urgent time. And I am an avid reader of news – all types of news. This is largely a personal preference and interest, but it’s also important when managing a global organization to have a well-rounded understanding of what’s happening in different parts of the world.

10. What advice would you give others to help them on their leadership journey?
Find your own voice; find people who model that voice, and take into consideration what they tell you; then incorporate it if it’s a fit for your career and personal brand. Being a lifelong learner is key, no matter your role. I still learn every day from the people around me, and I value those who spend time with me to make me a better person.

Thank you for inspiring us and sharing your wisdom, Peggy. We can all appreciate knowing the difference between friends and managers in the workplace, as well as those “full circle moments” which might include mistakes and “torn muscle” that make us better leaders. We all need mentors and guides to help us become better leaders, to see the “big picture” and help us with blind spots and the “people zone” too. Lastly, finding your voice, and incorporating it into your personal brand, as well as being a lifelong learner is key no matter your role! So true! Thanks again for sharing and being “a lifter” in my life too, Peggy! YOU make a difference…

If you would like to find out more about WorldwideERC, visit their website at http://www.worldwideerc.org/

Bruce Waller, CRP, PHR, SHRM-CP is the Vice President of Armstrong Relocation and Companies in Dallas, Texas. You can visit his BLOG “A Relocation Minute Update” with Bruce Waller at https://brucewaller.wordpress.com/ for more information on employee relocation resources, call 972-389-5673, or email bwaller@goarmstrong.com. Follow @brucewaller on Twitter too!