17 Truths About Working in HR

Here are 17 truths about working in HR. Create core values like birthdays and puppies. The rest is overrated. Communicate candidly, kindly, without pretension, and directly via text. Fine, okay, use the phone. Avoid email. Never send an email more than five sentences long. Give feedback kindly, with specificity, directly to the person who needs…

Lung Cancer

I have a childhood friend who endured stage IV lung cancer. Well, endured is not the right word. She was young and healthy. She took care of her body and was physically active. And now she’s gone. Jenny was diagnosed with cancer in March 2015 after experiencing ongoing back pain after a car accident. It…

On Being Wrong in HR

Many years ago, I worked for a human resources director who told me it was better to be stupid than wrong. If I didn’t know something, I shouldn’t volunteer an opinion. I should admit that I didn’t know the answer rather than risk offering an incorrect piece of advice. Turns out, nobody knows anything during…

You Should Run for Office

There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch. No government is going to give you anything for free. What you get for free comes out of the pocket of someone else. That’s entirely appropriate when it comes to defending our shared interests as a nation. Unfortunately, we don’t have many mutual interests. That’s what…

Be Your Own HR Hero

Do you remember a couple of years back when the “hero persona” was all over? “Be a hero and save HR. Be a hero and rescue recruiting. Be a hero and bring some donuts to the meeting.” A few years ago, I attended an executive summit where none of the CHROs wanted to be HR…

Going on a Retreat – BRB

Hi, everybody. I am going on a retreat. I will write, do yoga, and take long walks. I will talk to real people who don’t have anything to do with human resources, recruiting or consulting. I will focus on my personal mission statement. I’ll read some books. I will probably eat potato chips before going to…

Failure Smells

Do you know someone with horrible breath? Do you work with someone who starts talking and causes you to reach for the gas mask? You know what I’m talking about, right? It’s the smell of decomposing food coming from the belly of a large, fat water mammal. Turns out that halitosis is a principal indicator…