Jun 09, 2011 • By

HR help for nonprofit leaders

Leaders at nonprofit organizations and small businesses are known for the many hats they wear every day. They are directors, fundraisers, public relations managers, marketers and payroll, just to name a few of their many roles. They also serve as human resource managers, working hard to recruit, develop and reward employees.

Recognizing the vital role small businesses and nonprofits play in communities, and the fact that their employees need to be well-versed in so many functional areas, General Mills decided to share its expertise through an “HR 101” seminar in our headquarters community of Minneapolis, Minn.

More than 100 company volunteers gathered at the Minneapolis Convention Center on April 27 to share HR best practices with more than 100 different nonprofit organizations and small businesses. In partnership with HandsOn Twin Cities, we offered workshops and one-on-one consulting.

“We’re excited to see how the participants use the skills they’ve learned to strengthen and grow their organizations,” says Mike Davis, senior vice president of Global Human Resources for General Mills. “Our goal was to provide ideas that are actionable and don’t cost a lot of money in the hopes that everyone would leave the event with at least one tangible idea they can implement.”

Some of the most popular topics covered during the event were performance management and employee development as well as current trends in recruiting.

“It was a day well spent,” says Mark Noordsy from Junior Achievement of the Upper Midwest. “I walked out with information on how to equip my managers to have productive conversations with their teams as they prepare for annual reviews and other key conversations.”

The event also connected organizations that don’t otherwise interact on a regular basis, but can benefit from an idea exchange.

“Hearing from the other organizations in attendance was equally helpful because it gave me the opportunity to learn what others are doing in similar roles,” says Tiowa P. Collier from Twin Cities RISE!

The “HR 101” event is one of several examples of General Mills’ commitment to skilled volunteerism. General Mills employees participate in skilled volunteerism year-round in the areas of marketing, finance, human resources, logistics and strategic planning in an effort to help state government agencies and nonprofit organizations more effectively carry out their missions to serve others.

Volunteerism, whether skilled or traditional, is a core part of General Mills’ culture with approximately 82 percent of the company’s U.S. employees volunteering either through company programs or independently.