Privacy Conscious Volunteers

Every day, hundreds volunteer countless hours to help districts fulfill their mission. Their help is often vital to your success, but it can come with a hidden cost and a growing challenge – How do you properly screen out the bad volunteers (yes, they are out there) without alienating your stars?

hands in the airThe good news is, it’s easy. In fact, we are finding that most volunteers in today’s environment are expecting to have a background check done on them and are concerned if one is not requested.

Our goal is to make the process as simple as possible. The two most popular options are:

1. Use the same process that you do for employees.

2. Set up a weblink that you can send them in an email or post on your website.
The great news is, during the months of August and September, we are waiving the weblink setup fee!

Quick, Simple and Thorough.

At NATSB, our mission is to be the ultimate source of services to hire and retain superior employees for our clients. With our team of experts adhering to industry standards, we use robust products to help you achieve your goals and objectives. As your company continues to grow, we would like to grow with you! Monitoring the screening industry and the relevant regulatory bodies is imperative in keeping your companies free of hazards. We stay up-to-date in all our practices. We continue to invest in training, technology and systems to provide the best environment for our clients to hire with success. Please feel free to contact any of our customer service representatives with questions you may have regarding your account or our services. If you are searching for educational training for your business, you may contact Dan at He will be excited to formulate a quote for you and come out to train your volunteers.

6 Ways to Bring New Managers Up to Speed

All new managers I’ve known walk in their first day feeling good about themselves. They feel good about their new promotion or new job. They are excited and determined to succeed. There is usually an underlying anxiety as well. They need to prove that they are worthy of the promotion or their new manager title. Management training can help.

Without support, new managers quickly lose that first day zing. I remember a friend who as newly promoted into her first supervisory position. Within the first month she was overwhelmed and was pining for her former job. She had excelled in her former position; in her new job she was floundering. Her anxiety took root and planted doubts. By the second month, she told me she was constantly questioning herself and her abilities. And, most importantly, she hated her new job.

Those of us in the training and development field know that proper support is critical. Without it, new managers face a difficult road and a journey that impacts their entire team. While there’s no question in my mind that ongoing management and leadership skill training are an integral part of any manager’s development, new managers need more.

They need to be coached, inspired, and challenged. Like all employees, they need to know that what they do matters – especially in the context of managing their teams. When dealing with management, there’s a lot on the line. Ironically, our most inexperienced managers impact the most people in an organization. Usually they have the most direct reports, and in customer-driven organizations, they’re also the manager who is closest to the customer.

One of the easiest ways to show a new manager you want them to be successful is to present an organized and well thought-out training plan on their first day. Organized is the key word here. A structured plan for learning is reassuring and announces to new managers that you know they have things to learn and that it’s okay. It tells them that you are giving them what they need to be successful. It takes the pressure off.

How detailed and elaborate your training plan is, depends on you, the new manager, the manager’s boss, and the job requirements. Will it be a checklist of training points to discuss? Or will it be an outline including operational skills that need to be practiced and mastered? Will it focus on soft skills like how to delegate or how to supervise former peers? Or will it include new managerial tasks, such as submitting payroll?

To support new managers, we suggest:

  1. Meet with the new manager’s boss. Before the new manager’s first day, meet with his or her boss to determine training needs. Ask questions about anticipated rough spots (for example, the new manager will be supervising former peers). Listen to the boss’ ideas and expectations and discuss both soft skills and operational needs. Determine a realistic schedule for training and who should manage the training. If the organization already has a training plan in place, use it as your framework.
  2. Create the training plan. The training plan should include:
    – Each day’s learning objectives.
    – Time set aside for instructor-led, soft skills training classes or online self-study opportunities.
    – Time for the new manager to meet with his or her boss (or you) to discuss progress.
    – A target date to begin a mentoring relationship.
  3. Identify a peer partner. I like the idea of a peer partner – another manager that can field questions and provide encouragement and feedback. Sometimes it’s less threatening to call a peer with a question about how to do something than call the boss. When considering possible managers, it’s important to think about the manager’s personality, style and example. Select a manager who transitioned well as a new supervisor and is positive and upbeat about the job and company.
  4. Identify a mentor. A mentoring relationship can be highly motivational, inspiring, and challenging. But, a mentor shouldn’t be chosen lightly. Get to know the new manager. Talk to the new manager’s boss about personality matches. Consider several mentor candidates based on their leadership example, position in the company, and willingness to mentor. Then, consider personality and learning styles. For a mentoring relationship to work, it needs to be a suitable match. There needs to be a connection. There’s too much at stake to arbitrarily select someone and hope it works.
  5. Ask candid questions. Meet with the new manager and his or her boss to talk about the training plan. To establish credibility, encourage the boss to detail the learning plan and offer your support as necessary. Encourage and reassure the new manager, as needed. Express confidence. But, the new manager’s boss (or you) should also ask open-ended, candid questions about the new job responsibilities and any concerns. Consider:
    – What concerns do you have about supervising your former peers?
    – How are you feeling about managing friends?
    – What areas in particular do you think you need to learn or think you’d like to improve to excel in your new role?
    – Which new job responsibilities are you most excited about?
    – Which new job responsibilities do you think you need the most support on until you get up to speed?
  6. Follow up. Regular follow-up during the transition is important and should be built into the training plan. Most follow-up should be between the new manager and his or her boss. But, you should check in as well. Check in with the boss (think of it as another opportunity to build a training partnership with one of your customers). Consider asking the boss’ perspective on:
    – How the new manager is doing
    – Strengths and development areas
    – How to build on the new manager’s strengths
    – How the development areas are affecting the team
    – How the team is transitioning to the new manager
    – Whether the training plan needs to be revised

Check in with the new manager. Ask:

  • How things are going
  • How the training is progressing
  • How the team is transitioning
  • Challenge

Doing these things will help set up your new manager for success. I also agree with the idea of storytelling and asking new managers to share the characteristics of their favorite manager / leader. All managers should probably go through that activity from time to time to help validate the most important part of their jobs.

Will Stricker

Will Stricker

Successful Hire Seminar

Successful Hire SeminarThe Successful HIre Seminar has begun. With two locations under our belt, we are encouraged by the response of our attendees. Some have come to learn about EEOC compliance part of the background check. Others to see, just how our Electronic I-9 system actually works and to ask questions about I-9 audits. Drug Testing and how to implement a Drug-Free Workplace has been another big pull to the Successful HIre seminar as well. It’s a common thing for employers out there, even today, to not have a drug-free workplace in place. This may shock you! It has shocked some of our attendees. But it’s true. We see it everyday. Other topics also include HR Strategies and Development. This category is mainly focused on NATSB’s HR training courses. Our lead instructor, Dan Oblinger, briefly walks attendees through a few of our courses. Many attendees have already booked Dan to come onsite for training this fall. Our Successful Hire seminar is extending into the workplace of our attendees. The Successful Hire seminar was designed to help human resource professionals: maintain compliance in doing background checks; know the implications of not having a full drug-free workplace program; save time by implementing an electronic I-9 system with auditing; continue learning through NATSB training courses. Come to the Successful Hire seminar and learn more about these different topics and ask questions about the human resources industry. We look forward to having you at the Successful Hire seminar in one of the following cities. So come see us in Topeka, Salina, Manhattan, Lawrence, Emporia, Hutchinson or Wichita.

Dan to Speak at KS SHRM State Conference

Six stories up on a warm Kansas evening. I was an inexperienced patrolman. She was a young drug addict, suicidal, and dangling off the edge of the guardrail. That was my definitive high risk listening situation. Many years have passed, but I will always remember how emotionally draining it was to try to carry on a compelling conversation with an emotionally compromised stranger for 45 minutes.

My name is Dan Oblinger. Now I’m a trained and experienced hostage negotiator. The role of a negotiator is to listen. The risk of negotiating is always life or death. The reward is the ability to bring order from chaos, to aid the vulnerable, and to have those bent upon violence turn back from the brink. In a similar way, human resource professionals make workplaces orderly, just, and safe using highly refined communications strategies.

Listening is a perishable skill, requiring empathy and attentiveness. There are basic techniques that enhance the listening process and influence our communications partners. As the lead trainer for the National Screening Bureau (NATSB), I work with business leaders and HR professionals to promote excellence in a wide variety of industries. They realize that listening is the “forgotten skill”, the key to unlocking their potential as leaders and lovers, and a task that demands formal training to achieve excellence – formal training that less than 5% of the population will ever receive.

  • Do you desire formal training in listening, THE foundational organizational leadership skill?
  • Do you catch yourself interrupting those speaking with you?
  • Do you want to know the secrets of the listening universe?
  • Do you wish you had a grab bag of tactics to use in unpleasant and challenging interactions with colleagues, superiors, and loved ones?
  • Do you know the 7 active listening techniques used by crisis negotiators all over the globe?
  • How good a listener do you want to be?
If so, then plan on attending my presentation, “Listen Like a Negotiator” during the Kansas SHRM Conference. I have been training folks just like yourself to build more richly rewarding careers and personal relationships using the same principles that I use to defuse armed barricades and dissuade suicidal jumpers.
The Kansas SHRM Conference runs September 25-27, 2013 in Overland Park, Kansas. Register today at this LINK. While you’re there, swing by the NATSB booth to meet me and the NATSB crew, learn about our innovative pre-employment screening and training services! You will pick up more listening tips, see live demonstration of “state of the industry” tools, and even get a chance to put on headphones and take the “Listen Like a Negotiator Challenge”! Stay safe, and keep listening!
To see a preview, visit NATSB’s Speakers Bureau website.
Dan Oblinger, Director of Training, NATSB