Tag Archives: partnerships

Mentors can absolutely change your game!

In high school, my football coaches guided and inspired me to be my very best both on and off the field. In business, I have had the good fortune of having great mentors for the past 20 years. They have guided and encouraged me during challenging times, and to celebrate successes when times were going my way. Mentors can change the game for you as a mentee, as well as for a mentor giving back to others. I have been a mentor for others in our company as well as for college students and young professionals for guidance as a business leader, HR practitioner, or in the mobility space. When you give back some of the leadership lessons that others have poured into you during your career, life can be so much more fulfilling.

In 2018, I am teamed up with a college student studying Human Resources at Texas Women’s University. She is so passionate about HR and has a heart for continuous learning. We were recently discussing some of the value of our partnership and it reminded me of the similarities we have when we partner with others in our company and in our communities. For example, in relocation, a mentor can be a business partner that not only helps with a transaction, but provides resources and shares information to help your team develop AND transform your leadership which will result in a better program for your talent relocating. The value outcome is better relationships and better value for the recruiting teams. A mentor can help mentee’s drive positive outcomes and take their career to new levels.

Some of the value we discussed included:

  1. Networking: Mentors can help mentees or customers connect with the right people. As I am reminded, two are always better than one and three aren’t easily broken. There is a network of resourceful people waiting to help you connect.
  2. Review and Validation: Mentors can help mentees create or validate communication or decision points. Mentors have already been down the road and can provide wise counsel. The mentee or customer just needs to be vulnerable and ask for best approach methods. When we seek wise counsel, we are equipped for a more successful outcome.
  3. Trust worthy partnerships: Mentors respond quickly to the needs of their mentees and customers because they understand the importance of urgency and timing for the mentee or customer to have success. Partnerships change access points. It’s like always having a coach available (on call) to help you for the rest of your career.

What are you doing to add value for others on your team, or in your community? Consider mentoring high school, college students, or young professionals or even someone in your organization. If you are needing help as a mentee, now may be the time to reach out to a mentor or service provider for guidance and support. People really enjoy helping others when they know how they can help.

Quote of the day… “The purpose of life is to live a life of purpose.” (unknown)

Call to Action: You don’t have to do school, business, or life alone. Call someone today and ask for guidance as a mentor, mentee, or maybe you need a partner to support an area your are responsible for in your company. If you don’t know who to reach out to, call or send me an email and I will be glad to provide some guidance.

This has been A Relocation Minute on “Mentors can change the game” with Bruce Waller, 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 http://www.BruceWaller.com for review my latest leadership book “Find Your Lane” on sale at Amazon, Barnes and Noble or Kindle Version!

Use these 10 C’s when considering CHANGE in any organization!

Are you responsible for recruiting or mobility on your HR team? Do you feel like your on-boarding program continues to evolve when relocating talent or needs a refresh? If you say evolving, I say keep going! Unfortunately, the response I hear most often is… we really need a refresh. However, a refresh often requires an investment of time and energy during the assessment, then more time and energy “selling” to leadership. Sound familiar? This is why the majority of companies that need a refresh settle for the status quo.

This is similar to the time and energy it takes to recruit and develop talent in any organization as well… you just have to “C” (see) it from your (internal) customer lens. In other words, if you were relocating to a new city for a new role, are you doing everything you can to make it a great on-boarding experience for your team members or just using the “we’ve always done it that way” approach because you lack resources? Next time you sense a need to change or improve the experience for your teammates relocating, consider pulling in some of your stakeholders and use these 10 C’s below. Using a status quo approach could actually be costing you more “time and money” than you think.

  1. Be Committed to the development of the policy and partnership. This may take some time, but it is the heartbeat to any successful program.
  2. Be Consistent managing policy which may include “exceptions”. Tracking exceptions can be a game changer each year during the client review. Know whats driving these needs.
  3. Collaborate with all stakeholders this includes HR, Recruiters, Business Unit leaders, Vendors, Executives, etc… Be open to hearing other leadership perspectives.
  4. Continuously improve and evolve your program. Attend local relocation conferences as well as invest in WorldwideERC for an assortment of mobility resources.
  5. Have the Courage to BE BOLD and make adjustments during the process. Every relocation has different elements.
  6. Be an Champion of the program so other team members understand the on-boarding impact. Once you have established your program, meet with stakeholders to share success.
  7. Communication is key with all stakeholders even when you have bad news. Be proactive and push information rather than pulling.
  8. Change policy when needed. Sometimes there is no need to wait for an end of year review when a change is immediate.
  9. Challenge the status quo. Your employees and family relocating will appreciate this approach. Develop a passion for providing a great experience no matter the challenges.
  10. Have Compassion and empathy for family challenges along the way. All moves are not created equal. Family issues are one of the biggest reasons for a failing assignment.

…and most importantly, be Calm… Relocation can be stressful, especially when you are in reactive mode. However, it is minimized when you have a purposeful program. Everyone understands the process and is in alignment with expectations which leads to more positive outcomes for the team members and their family.

Call to Action: Schedule a client review and find out what other options are out there to elevate the experience for your team… or consider attending the next relocation meeting in your area. Visit WorldwideERC.org for mobility resources and for local chapter information. In Dallas, check out NorthTexasRelcoationProfessionals.org

Quote of the Week… “Be the change that you wish to see in the world.” (Mahatma Gandhi)

This has been A Relocation Minute on “10 C’s to CHANGE” 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 http://www.BruceWaller.com for review my latest leadership book “Find Your Lane” on sale at Amazon!

It’s time to “HIT REFRESH” on your relocation policy…

In his new book “Hit Refresh”, author and CEO of Microsoft Satya Nadella shares a story about transformation at Microsoft and the quest for new energy, new ideas, and renewal. When you hit refresh, it’s not about starting over, but “clearing the clutter” for a refreshed update. 

Since the elimination of the moving deduction in the recent “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act”, it’s time to refresh your relocation policy. One suggestion is to remove the moving deduction language being an “IRS requirement” since it is no longer a tax deduction. However, you may want to keep the “time and distance” content as a parameter as a guide for mobility benefits. Based on feedback from WorldwideERC members on the community forum, many plan to keep the time and distance content as a guide for their program as you can see from a few examples below:

  • We are still using the distance test as an eligibility requirement.
  • We are still using it as an eligibility for relocation benefits. The business needs some sort of guidance so easier to just maintain it irrelevant of tax ability.
  • Most of our clients are electing to leave the distance test in their policies, removing all reference to IRS guidelines and calling it a company requirement for eligibility of relocation benefits. They are also keeping in the 1 year from the new job start date for completion of benefits also as a company requirement.

It is getting more difficult to hire the best candidates and employee relocation will continue to be a significant part of the process to attract and retain key talent. What will your company be doing to elevate the onboarding experience for your relocating employees in 2018?

If you would like to access this information or more on the moving deduction feedback, visit WorldwideERC community https://www.worldwideerc.org

Call to Action: Review your relocation policy with your partners to confirm the verbiage that you would like to communicate with your candidates as well as other potential changes in 2018. It’s a great idea to review or HIT REFRESH on your policy each year…

Quote of the week: “A team is a not a group of people that work together. A team is a group of people that trust each other.” (Simon Sinek)

This has been A Relocation Minute on “Its time to hit refresh on your policy” 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 http://www.BruceWaller.com for review my latest leadership book “Find Your Lane” on sale at Amazon!

2018 brings opportunities and changes when relocating talent in the US.

Each New Year always brings many opportunities and challenges for all of us in business and in our personal life. The key to success is how we adapt and respond to change. In 2018, there are some changes that will impact your company when relocating talent in the US. Some of these changes will include the $1.5 Trillion “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act”, as well as the FMCSA’s Electronic Logging Device mandate for owner operators in the trucking industry. 

In the book “The 4-hour work week” by Tim Ferris, he shares an email from a friend that reminds me of the best approach when facing any new changes:

“While many are ringing their hands, I recall the 1970’s when we were suffering from an oil shock causing long lines at the gas station, rationing and 55 mph speed limits on federal highways, a recession, very little venture capital, and what President Carter (wearing a sweater while addressing the nation on TV because he had turned down the heat in the White House) called a “malaise”. It was during those times that two kids without any real college education, Bill Gates, and Steve Jobs, started companies that did pretty well. Opportunities abound in bad times as well as good times. In fact, the opportunities are even greater when the conventional wisdom is that everything is going into the toilet. … we can look forward to a new year filled with opportunities as well as stimulating challenges.”

So what are these changes and how will they impact employee relocation?

  1. The Moving Expense Deduction: The moving expense tax deduction will be suspended until the year 2025. This means that companies that gross up the relocation expense will need to plan on an increase for the household goods move, 30 days of storage and final move trip. Since this is no longer an excludable tax deduction, the moving expense will now show as income to the employee. (*Exceptions will be for a military relocation). There are other areas of impact for relocation expenses as well which include supplemental rate changes, mortgage insurance, home sale capital gains reduction, and others. The bill does not seem to effect the tax on relocation home sale transaction expense completed by an RMC. Please consult with your tax firm for making any changes to your current program.
  2. Electronic Logging Device (ELD) Mandate: The Federal Carrier Motor Safety Act (FMSCA) has now mandated the use of ELD’s for all truck drivers including household goods van operators. This device will sync with the van operators working / driving hours. What does this mean for corporate relocation? It could mean longer transit times up to 2 days due to the hours of service rules, increase temp housing, and an increase in transportation costs. The key to success will be communicating expectations during the relocation. Companies and their suppliers must be proactive, more now than ever when communicating with employee/family moving for a successful relocation.

Call to Action: Reach out to your tax consultant for the latest tax law changes and update your policy as soon as possible. Q1 would be a great time to review any changes with your suppliers and partners. If you don’t a partner, invest in one for 2018! You will appreciate the single point resource and so will your employees relocating.

“The first step to leadership is no action, it’s understanding.” (John W Gardner)

This has been A Relocation Minute on “Relocation Changes in 2018” 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 http://www.BruceWaller.com for review my latest leadership book “Find Your Lane” on sale at Amazon!

Cost alignment is key, but this component is just as important when relocating talent!

Over the last few years, we have heard about the importance of cost alignment from companies when relocating their employees. Many companies base their policy on a cost budget approach when relocating talent. However, the talent management shortage has also played a vital role lately for companies wanting to be competitive when hiring talent that requires a relocation.

Today, companies expect another component when relocating talent known as “the experience”. The employee experience is about employee engagement from the time an employee connects with the provider for their relocation. I recently heard one of our leaders share a poll that stated 80% of companies think they are providing superior service when look through their eyes, and only 8% of the customers think they are receiving superior service. Wow, that is a 72% difference! Delivering an experience starts with understanding the needs of the customer. 

So what experiences are customers looking for?

Customers have different needs. Some are looking for a specific moving dates, or budget options to consider when selecting services. Some like the new virtual survey concept because it is convenient, while others don’t feel like it is safe or as accurate as a visual survey. Some customers just want a warm smile and trust in their moving coordinator and driver. Whatever the case may be, the key to providing a great experience always starts with asking questions to determine expectations. If customer has needs that are not aligned with services, then they will most likely not have a great experience. However, if you can identify what’s important, and build a plan around their answer, then you just might deliver the experience they are looking for and create a customer for life!

“The first step in leadership is not action, it’s understanding.” (John W Gardner)

Call to Action: What makes a great experience for your team? Identify three things this week that might elevate the experience for your employees relocating and share with your relocation partner. Send me an email and share with me too! I would enjoy hearing your feedback!

This has been “A Relocation MinuteThe Customer Experience” 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.


Are you pursuing mobility excellence? 3 takeaways for your HR and Talent Acquisition teams!

Are you in HR or support talent with mobility needs? The North Texas Relocation Professionals (NTRP), a local relocation chapter in North Texas for WorldwideERC recently hosted a corporate panel meeting for members and guests to share “Pursuing Mobility Excellence from a Corporate Perspective”. NTRP members represent different relocation verticals in real estate, temporary housing, household goods moving, and HR managing mobility for different companies. This is an excellent organization to expand your education and mobility network! 

Our corporate panel was represented by companies with both US domestic and global mobility responsibilities including Sabre, Tenet Healthcare, BNSF Railway, and Dell. Some of the areas discussed during the meeting were: Policy Development and Review, Request for Proposals, and What keeps Corporate Mobility Professionals up at night.

Here are a few takeaways that might be relevant to your program:

  1. Bring facts and data to help corporate mobility professionals when you see an area to add value.
  2. Be brief and follow agenda for RFP’s!
  3. Relationships and collaboration are critical for great partnerships.

Others takeaways included:

  • Review policy often for exceptions
  • Collaborate with all of your stakeholders
  • Engage in partners that are “thinkers” and that understand process
  • Focus more on “cost to outcome” driven policies
  • Be transparent when challenges occur
  • Be brief on the RFP – adding footnotes when needed for pricing
  • Immigration and travel ban continue to keep us up at night

For more information on NTRP visit http://www.northtexasrelocationprofessionals.org/ or find us in Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter!

For more information on WorldwideERC, visit http://www.worldwideerc.org/

Call to action: Visit NTRP and WorldwideERC and browse website for resources to help you expand your employee relocation program. You can find many resources from benchmarking to a forum for corporate discussion. Also, sign up for the WorldwideERC global conference in Chicago, or our next NTRP meeting in Dallas!

“When you limit the people around you, then you limit yourself.” (John McCaa)

This has been a “A Relocation Minute” on NTRP Corporate Panel “” 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! 

What would you add to this list for a great partnership?

I recently had the honor of speaking to a wonderful group of HR professionals in Dallas, Texas about maximizing the onboarding experience when relocating an employee. The employee relocation is often the first experience for a new employee and family with the new company which makes it critical to get off to a great start.

One of the points I always stress is the importance of developing a great partnership with your vendors. The right partnership can make a difference for the person managing the program and put them at ease which will also put the employee relocating at ease too. Investing in a great partnership basically says “we care” from the moment you made the decision to join our company. 

When the meeting was completed, I was asked to share some of the traits that make up a great partnership and wanted to share with you too. When engaging a vendor, it’s like a new date. It starts with being a good listener and learning what’s most important to each other to make the partnership effective. A partnership is a two way street and both parties need to be open minded, transparent, and committed to develop a great long term partnership

Some of the partnership traits that can make a difference include:

  1. Trust… is the foundation!
  2. Integrity… always do the right thing.
  3. Open communication… allows access when needed.
  4. Collaboration… working together when issues arise.
  5. Relationships… shows you care.
  6. Values… creates alignment for things that matter.
  7. Serve… each other in everything you do.
  8. Patience… when mistakes happen.
  9. Transparent… gives you the best chance to achieve goals.
  10. Purpose… its why we are here doing what we do!

Which one do you think is most important? Who you add to this list?

Call to action: Reach out to your partners to discuss the importance of these traits and what should be focused on to elevate the experience for everyone. or share how much you appreciate your current partnership! If you don’t have a partner, then use these traits to find a partner that best aligns to support your organizational goals.

This has been a “A Relocation Minute” on “Great Partnership Traits” 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” now available at Amazon!