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Jun 11, 2013

HR 101: Stop, Look and Listen

I’ve been with Kudos for the past five months, working to develop and document their HR polices procedures and set up their systems. My professional background is a mix of technical recruiting and HR in the tech space. Away from work, I spend my time as a dance teacher and choreographer. When approached by Kudos, I was excited about the opportunity to work with a company that was HR-centric, that aligned with my beliefs and that every day, worked to make the workplace better for others, while practicing what they preach right here at home.

 My experience in the past went one of two ways: either a company loved the idea of implementing HR practices, creating stellar policies that aligned with a vision of a top-notch workplace and putting their people first but didn’t make the time or resources available to make it a reality, or their idea of HR or the practices they had in place were heavy-handed, old-school and didn’t align with their demographic, business model or ideals.

Part of the reason I love working for start-ups or SMBs, is that often I get a blank slate. It appeals to my creative side. I can learn about the people, the culture, and values and create practices that work for the company.  

It is my belief that HR can be fun, exciting and… dare I say… even sexy. Here are a few general rules to live by:

  • If you have a good thing going, don’t be heavy-handed. Put policies in place to protect yourself and your people, but don’t put into place useless policies and procedures that only trudge your employees down and make more work and less fun for everyone.

  • Ask your employees what they want, and listen. There is no point implementing a health-spending account, a breakfast program, flex time or having beer on Friday if it doesn’t align with what the team wants.

  • Think outside the box. Don’t just do it because it’s always been done – make it your own. There are great resources available online for cutting-edge, fun ideas for almost anything HR – do your homework, see what new ideas are out there and then tailor those to work for your organization.

The possibilities of what HR can do for your business are infinite. In future blogs, we will talk about different practices individually – what we do here at Kudos and what we’ve learned along the way.

Feel free to reach out to me directly at with your comments and/or questions. It would be great to hear about your experiences and ideas on how to create a great culture and better working environment.

Tom Short

Tom Short is the President and Co-Founder of Kudos Inc, where he is pioneering his vision for an industry leading recognition and engagement SaaS solution. Tom’s expertise in branding, marketing strategy and cloud-based SaaS development allows him to chase his passion of changing the world one thank you at a time. When he’s not showing the world that recognition matters, Tom enjoys coaching football, the Black Keys and a steaming vanilla latte to start his day.

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Tom Short

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