Barbara Ford talks HR with #OpenCoffeeLou

A cement truck accident snarled I-71 and I-65. River Road’s closure for the 2013 World’s Cyclocross Championship caused traffic snafus all along the river and Brownsboro Road. The steady drizzle made this morning an attractive one for sleeping in.

Still #OpenCoffeeLou this morning attracted 28 entrepreneurially-minded people to the Creation Gardens building in front of Ghyslain.

This week’s moderator, Cale Hollingsworth, came with a written agenda (is that a first?) and got the ball rolling right away with announcements:

  • Stacey Servo of New2Lou wanted to remind the group that nominations for Business First’s 40 Under 40 issue are open until March 8. Typically, said Servo, 40 Under 40 has skewed toward honoring primarily the corporate movers and shakers. It would be a great showing for the city and the community to recognize more entrepreneurs and tech folk. Probably half of #OpenCoffeeLou attendees are eligible to be nominated. The judges are looking to recognize “the region’s up and coming business leaders and community supporters under the age of 40.” Nominees will receive a form by the end of March and winners will be announced at the end of September. Click here to nominate your favorite under-40 up-and-comer.
  • Without wading into the (in my opinion) shocking amount of ugly reporting surrounding this issue… Andrew Rhodes, who missed the meeting but is a frequent attendee, wanted to remind the group that Taco Punk has launched a Kickstarter campaign to expand its catering options and create an outdoor seating space. Gabe Sowder and Taco Punk have hosted an #OpenCoffeeLou, and many of the regulars at #OpenCoffeeLou dine there often. Food blogger Ashlee Clark Thompson asks the question: Why are we so mad about the Taco Punk Kickstarter Campaign?” on her blog today.
  • Planning for Startup Weekend Louisville #2 is rolling along. Early Bird pricing ends Jan. 31. More information available here. We’re still looking for prizes, sponsorship, and mentors. If you’re interested or have questions, drop me a note at [email protected]
  • As you may have heard through the grapevine, Insider Louisville is expanding. Ken Hardin has joined the team as our new General Manager. We’re now looking to hire two more full-time positions: Staff Writer & Assignments Editor.
  • The Governors School for Entrepreneurship is launching at Georgetown College this summer. The program, based on the Governors Scholars Program, which serves motivated high school students and is typically staffed by college professors and high-level secondary school teachers, is looking to add boots-on-the-ground entrepreneurs to its faculty. They’re also looking for volunteer mentors and coaches. Student applications are being accepted through Feb 13. Students must be currently enrolled in grades 8-11, and the program will run from June 9-29 2013. This program falls under the Kentucky Science and Technology Corporation, the same people who bring you IdeaFestival.
  • Richard Meadows, #OpenCoffeeLou’s resident cheerleader for fiber, pointed us to this Fox News article about Chattanooga’s GeekMove and Gig Tank programs, both of which have been facilitated by the city’s investment in fiber cables. Chattanooga has the “most advanced smart grid in the nation.” In three years, Chattanooga has gone from “sleepy cow town” to a tech leader. Why not Louisville? Meadows is visiting Chattanooga next weekend and will report back to #OpenCoffeeLou on Feb. 11.

Notes from Barbara Ford’s HR discussion
(click to enlarge)

Our enrichment guest this week was HR guru Barbara Ford who talked basic best practices for hiring, firing, managing, and recruiting employees. Choice nuggets of wisdom from Ford and the #OpenCoffeeLou group:

  • Company culture should be reflected in company policies: “Parents who buy books don’t have children who read. Parents who read have children who read.”
  • Firing should never be a surprise. “Annual reviews” are completely broken models– they’re anachronistic. Give clear goals with frequent feedback. Young workers right out of college have always had immediate or near immediate feedback through their teachers and professors.
  • The best bonus programs occur every 90 days. The positive effects of a raise wear off in 90 days. The effects of a disappointing review last 6 months.
  • Tom Cottingham recommended the book PeopleWare by Tom DeMarco.
  • The Society for Human Resource Managers is worth joining if hiring/firing/managing people is a significant part of your job.

Next week’s #OpenCoffeeLou will be moderated by Jon Mattingly of Kodable. We’re pretty sure we’ll be at the Creation Gardens building again next Monday at 8:30 a.m. If our meeting place changes, you’ll hear it first here on Insider Louisville (well, okay, you’ll probably hear it first via @InsiderLou on Twitter).

(If you’re a careful reader, you’ll see that last week’s #OpenCoffeeLou recap was #10 and this one is #12. No, we did not have #OpenCoffeeLou 11 without you. I just simply lost track of recaps one week when I was sick with the throat crud. Of course, this begs the question: If there’s an #OpenCoffeeLou, and I’m not there to blog the recap, did it really occur? Discuss.)