I got a call from an HR technology vendor telling me that I’m in this month’s HR Magazine. Then he asked me to do a free webinar for him.

Yeah, okay. I must look new.

So let’s back up. What is HR Magazine? Well, it’s a monthly publication from SHRM, an HR association. And it’s terrible.

This month’s edition is especially dreadful. There’s a cover photo of a woman from a much-admired company. She’s a VP of innovation, making her a shining example of a successful woman in the technology industry. Strategic. Technical. Approachable. Leading the push for innovation at one of American’s best places to work.

But somebody isn’t providing wise counsel to this woman because she looks like a mime who’s hatching from a Georgia O’Keefe painting.

HR Magazine

Surprise! I’m here! Let’s innovate!

Now look at the bottom right corner above the tiny SHRM logo. You’ll see two major articles in this magazine:

1. New thinking on dress codes.
2. Why does hiring take so long?

You don’t need to read HR Magazine to know that the new thinking on dress codes is that it’s 2016. Stop talking about dress codes. Also, lemme summarize why hiring takes so long: it’s usually because of HR.

I couldn’t go any further than the cover. I threw the magazine in the recycling bin and never found my name.

HR Magazine is terrible, but it doesn’t have to be that way. There’s lots of interesting content about HR all over the web. The leadership of SHRM — the people who pay themselves millions of dollars, oversee a shrinking membership base, and pretend like an ad on CNN is the same as improving the careers of its members — should be braver and bolder. Feature content that will expand and enhance the perspectives of their membership.

But that won’t happen.

I just hope that when I make the cover of HR Magazine, it looks less like an image of a birth canal and more like that time Khaleesi emerged from the flames with dragons.

You wouldn’t ask Khaleesi to give a free HR webinar, would you?



  1. You’re absolutely brilliant! Just sent this to my boss who loves SHRM. Couldn’t help it!

  2. It’s a little easy to say that the hiring process is usually so long because of HR, because telling HR that it sucks is kind of your jam.

    But it’s not exactly true. Her are some stats on exactly where that time in the hiring process is being spent, pulled from ERE’s new benchmarking service, which has actual data on over 2 million candidates and more than 46,000 hires. When you add it all up, the hiring process is nearly equally divided between HR and the hiring managers, but the hiring managers actually take a little bit longer – 52% of the entire process, vs 42% for HR.

  3. This is 100% what I said when I saw the cover. (Plus, in a past life before HR I was a photographer – so I was especially disappointed)

    I try to get excited about HR Magazine every month like ‘Yay! New HR things I can learn!’ and then I look at it for 30 seconds, realize it’s not happening and go back to the internet.

    Your candidness brightens my inbox, Laurie.

  4. Ha! Glad to know I’m not alone in my disdain for HR Magazine. It goes directly into my recycle bin every month. Frankly, I get more out of local chapter events than anything done from the center.

    (That would include an epic presentation you did for the Baton Rouge chapter — I’ll never forget the shocked looks in the audience when you declared flip flops and cardigans to be verboten HR attire. Spectacular–you are my hero!)

  5. I guarantee that I could edit and publish a lot better and much more engaging (and readable) magazine than the one SHRM turns out. I have a little bit of experience in that regard. Of course, that’s why they would never, ever think of getting me to do it …

  6. I was so looking forward to your 2016 HR fashion advice here. I saw none. Maybe I missed it?
    We can jump fast forward to 2017 if you’d like.

    I know you don’t like these things but I added you to a new group on Facebook – Great Work Wear. Late at night we talk about things to wear (and not wear) at work and post pics of things we find we like from places like Etsy and it’s like playing dress up dolls sometimes. You’d probably hate it but we have a blast and would love to have you. You do look great in clothes.


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