Top 25 HR Digital Influencers for 2011

Our HRExaminer series of Top 25 lists started back in 2009 with a focus on HR. We updated the list in November 2010 and now we're publishing the freshest list four months later. You'll find past 'chart toppers' here and lots of fresh faces as well.


Top 25 HR Digital Influencers for 2011


HRExaminer-Top-25-HR-Digital-Influencers-List for 2011

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March 24, 2011 – This is the third edition of the HRExaminer Top 25 HR Digital Influencers List (prior editions here and here). The influencer lists are built with an algorithm that measures the audience size (reach), repeatability (links and tweets to content) and alignment (the way the writer’s content maps against our key word cloud).

This list covers the general terrain of HR. The people on the list are (quantitatively) the most widely read, the most quoted and the most published people on the general subject of HR.

Watching the ebb and flow of people who pass through the blogosphere is an interesting pastime. There are a few dynamics that seem to drive the rise and fall of a person’s standing. Attention span, the growth and development of an author, and the enthusiasm that comes with being new to the game.

We define a silo with a series of 25 key words and phrases. (Unchanged in our investigations of HR Influencers). One of the things that is probably happening is that some people on the list have expanded their coverage beyond the core concepts (Laurie Ruettimann comes to mind) while actually expanding their overall influence. As their work moves out of the key words we’re defining as the foundation, they fall down on the list.

This is a pretty interesting phenomenon.

The churn you can see when you compare the three iterations of the project seems to come from a combination of the maturing of existing list members and the fact that social media authors tend to be really prolific in their early output.

What’s fascinating is the fact that the new influencers rise to the top of the search engine lists because their material has the best SEO. So, when someone goes to find out about, say, “performance management in human resources” on Google or Bing, the newest content will rise to the top. As older writers follow their curiosity to deeper and different subjects, their use of the initial top level keywords diminishes.

That means that there is a constant flow of novelty and newness that the search engines deliver in an attempt to stay current. Like all search engine subjects (and social media in general), the question is “What have You Done For Me Lately?” There is little room for wisdom in online influence. It’s more like a combination of immediacy, volume and urgency.

Sadly, that’s not so different from our political and legal cultures.

The other thing that happens to social media luminaries is that they get busy doing other stuff or run out of things to stay, A fair number of the people who have graced our lists were building large career moves. The net result of their success is that their online communication slows down.

There’s sort of a natural ebb and flow to the process.

Take a look at the following table. It lists the HR Influencers from each of our three lists. In red, the movement of the 2011 list place holder is described. 14 of 25 (56%) of the 2011 list members are new. Some will be familiar to readers (they appear on other lists) but many are fresh faces.

Increasingly, the people on the list are writing on behalf of their employers. Where the early influencers were early adopters of the technology, the game will always go to people who have budget, resources and motivation. The number of people on the list who are working HR professionals is in steep decline.

That idea (that the people with the most influence are unlikely to actually work in the profession) is sure to stir up its usual amount of controversy. The fact is that people who work in the trenches just don’t have the time or the motivation to sustain extensive thinking and publishing on the subject.

Are hats are off to the people on the list this time. These are the voices that drive the marketplace.


2011

2010

2009

1

Kevin Grossman

n/c

Kevin Grossman

Mark Stelzner

2

Yosie Saint Cyr

new

Josh Bersin

Penelope Trunk

3

Sharlyn Lauby

up

Kris Dunn

Lance Haun

4

Aman Singh

up

Sharlyn Lauby

Joel Cheesman

5

Gautam Ghosh

up

Laurie Ruettimann

John Sumser

6

Josh Bersin

down

Gautam Ghosh

Jessica Lee

7

Monica Gerson

new

Aman Singh

Jim Stroud

8

Matt Lafata

new

Mark Stelzner

Kris Dunn

9

Trish McFarlane

up

Laura Schroeder

Ann Bares

10

Mark Smith

new

Mike Haberman

Todd Raphael

11

Chris Young

up

Wes Wu

Jason Alba

12

Erik Samdahl

up

Trisha McFarlane

Sharlyn Lauby

13

Laurie Ruettimann

down

Ben Eubanks

Laurie Ruettimann

14

Abhishek Mittal

up

Jason Davis

Bill Kutik

15

Stephen Bruce

new

Kelly Dingee

Alexander Kjerulf

16

Bill Jensen

new

Jennifer McClure

Ben Eubanks

17

Karen Bucks

new

Abhishek Mittal

Jason Davis

18

Laura Schroeder

down

Jim Hollincheck

Bill Vick

19

Wally Bock

new

Chris Young

Steve Roessler

20

Chris Fernandi

new

Karen Bucks

John Ingham

21

Ron Thomas

new

Paul DeBettignies

Kevin Grossman

22

Mark Vickers

new

Erik Samdahl

Lisa Rosendahl

23

Steve Boese

new

Desert Beacon

Jim Giuliano

24

Tracy Brinkmann

new

Lisa Rosendahl

Chris Fernandi

25

Jon Ingham

new

Dan McCarthy

Peter Clayton


Keywords:

“human resources” “human capital”, “human resources” “performance management”, “human resources” development, “human resources” “talent acquisition”, “human resources” “talent management”, “human resources” “workforce planning”, “human resources” recruiting, “human resources” training, “human resources” compensation, “human resources” career, “human resources” “career development”, payroll “human resources”, hr training, hr “workforce planning”, hr “talent management”, hr “human capital”, hr career, hr “career development”, hr “performance management”, payroll hr, payroll benefits, payroll “human resources” staffing, payroll “employment law”, payroll EEOC, hr development, “human resources” “recruitment process outsourcing”, “human resources” “candidate relationship management”, “human resources” “background check”, “human resources” “job references”, hr “talent acquisition”, hr “recruitment process outsourcing”, hr “candidate relationship management”, hr “background check”, hr “job references”

HRExaminer-Top-25-HR-Digital-Influencers-List for 2011

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