Seven Habits We Might Want to Kick

In 1989, when Stephen Covey first wrote his book, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, I’d just bought my first computer. You should know it cost me my first born. To this day, I wonder about that child. Was he happy being raised by that mullet-haired nerd-nick flogging five-ton computers in a Petaluma warehouse? […]

The Best Reason to Ditch Your Employee-of-the-Month Program

Decades before now, some HR gal (that’s what we were called back then) came up with a plan: Here’s a thought! We’ll pick one employee every month and crown that person Employee of the Month! We’ll put his picture on a wall and give him a gift certificate to Sizzler!  And then another middle-manager, Frank, […]

Five Must-Have Qualities for HR Professionals

Over the years, I’ve met some doozies, some HR people who should have chosen different careers. Though I’ve mostly been charmed to work with some of the best in the industry, those few bad eggs sour HR’s reputation as a whole.  Like law enforcement, our occupation has taken a nasty hit due to the mistakes […]

How HR Can Stop Playing the Game of Whack-a-Mole

Let’s say you have a department with an increasing turnover and ongoing complaints. Assuming the complaints are not about egregious acts in violation of labor law, you might find yourself having multiple time-zapping conversations.  You might then be speaking with the manager in an attempt to fix issues and problems.  And in this conversation, the […]

Innovation and The Lego Movie

I’d been putting off seeing this film but finally watched it with my family on Thanksgiving.  By mid-film, most my family had drifted out of the room, which left me and my 26-year-old son, who just happens to be a filmmaker. Despite the movie being a full-on visual assault and conceived for those with snapshot attention […]

The R in HR Doesn’t Stand for Rah-Rah

Every year—right around the holidays, actually—some HR buzzword starts to irritate me.  The rock in my loafer this year is the word “engagement.”  This is because so many seem to confuse it with the word “appreciation.”  And when you confuse the two, the result is wasted time and money. Engaging employees is on everyone’s mind […]

For a Work-Life Balance, We Need More than a Time Change

I have given plenty of advice over the years about finding and maintaining a work-life balance.  After having a much needed extra hour sleep, with my brain feeling somewhat refreshed, I’ve decided that my advice was leaving something important out of equation. See, I’ve always associated this whole balance thing with how much time you spend […]