Surrealism and Pop Art in Life

I travel too much for work. Sometimes, it’s not very healthy. I am trying to develop better habits, which is why I’m killing time at art museums instead of bars. This past week, I went to Chicago. I stopped by the Museum of Contemporary Art to check out two exhibits: one on surrealism, the other…

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Pre-Mortem Assessments of Life

I’m not interested in doing a post-mortem on projects, policies or relationships. In theory, it makes sense to take stock of an event when it’s over. It sounds healthy to compile a list of “lessons learned.” But you know what happens with a post-mortem? Not much. You make a list, file it away, and forget…

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compassion fatigue

Compassion Fatigue Is Real

I have friends who work deep in the trenches of animal rescue groups. They rescue pit bulls from fighting rings. They rehome unwanted cats and move them to barns in the countryside. They save bunnies and chinchillas from the most disgusting and repugnant breeding facilities. Several of them suffer from compassion fatigue, but many do…

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Too Busy to Write

Hello, everybody. Just a quick note to tell you that I’m behind on blogging. It assumes two things: you read my blog and give a shit. Thank you. Here’s the deal. I had to run up a skyscraper on Sunday morning. Later that night, I attended a memorial service. It was terrible and troublesome and…

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The Future of HR

People ask me about the future of HR. Am I an optimist? Am I a cynic? I think you have to look at the past to understand the future. Business leaders brazenly defrocked HR between 2009-2014 and invested in software, which has largely failed. Meanwhile, a talented cohort of HR professionals became disenfranchised and moved…

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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…

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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…

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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…

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