Earlier this year, I started flushing.

There are many reasons why this can happen, but, for me, it’s anxiety-related. And, unless I want to take a bucket of Xanax, I know that I need to cool down as my body heats up.

When I started researching flushing, I was hit with a ton of horrible information on the internet. First, it’s probably cancer. It’s always cancer until it’s not. Then science blamed my age and hormones. I was told to take a ton of supplements but to watch out for toxic side effects. Finally, I read that I should get a B12 shot.

The B12 injection is not a bad idea in general — not because I’m flushing — but because there is some evidence that vegetarians benefit from vitamin B supplements. But the rest of the advice was pretty awful and based on old wives tales, cultural traditions, and assumptions made from studies that haven’t been validated beyond the original scientific research.

Pomegranate and magnesium supplements? Black cohosh? Or how about I stay hydrated and limit my exposure to stressful situations?

It turns out, the last one works.

Evidence-based [anything] is the best way to get through life, and I believe it’s especially important to take an evidence-based approach to human resources management. Much of what we believe, from generational differences to talent management, is built on theories and biases from people who have been in positions of power for years.

Need more information on evidence-based HR? Check out this website. Also, read this presentation on evidence-based talent management. If you’re up for new ideas and a different way of thinking about HR, I think those resources will be good for you.

Finally, before you open your mouth and espouse wisdom on HR, play a game and assume what you’re about to say is totally wrong. I’ll give you an example.

Years ago, I had an HR boss who liked to walk the factory floor and talk to our shift workers. Seems reasonable, right? She’s building relationships. Well, yeah, we took our first-ever company survey and learned that the employees hated her and thought she was spying on them. She was building camaraderie, sure. The workers were all uniting in hatred against her. And they didn’t like her ideas on Human Resources management software.

So, consider yourselves warned. The only effective HR management strategy is one bolstered by evidence. Evidence-based HR may be the way of the future. God knows that everything else is just voodoo, chewing gum, and a little bit of luck.