How to Manage Your Schedule When Your Hair Is On Fire


Overcommitment is sprinting into oblivion with your hair on fire.

Self-management is less about getting stuff done and more about your relationship with time.

Effect of overcommitment:

You can’t enjoy leading with a gaggle of tasks honking for attention. Relief is the fullest expression of joy for overcommitted leaders.

Overbooked leaders are riddled with mediocrity.

There’s no time to innovate; no opportunity to develop; and no timeline for improvement when a thousand puppies nip your fingers.

Nagging frustration worms into every situation when obligation exceeds capacity. Even the best of us...


Leadership Math (Algebra Much?)


I love the funny images on Facebook about not using Algebra since taking the class umpteen years ago. I mean, honestly, when's the last time you actually whipped out a pencil and solved for (do they still use pencils in school?). The answer may actually be more recent than you realize, and probably in a way you haven't even thought of. I've realized that math applies to many things and often a simple equation can be the answer to a complex problem.

I wasn't always...


The Pros and Cons of Mandating College Degrees for Employment

There’s a growing trend for companies to do away with mandatory bachelor’s degrees for employees. While higher education is more critical for certain roles (think nursing or engineering) is it necessary to require degrees for roles such as a project manager or salesperson?

The short answer is it depends how you think about it.

Pros of hiring people with college degrees:

Their ability to think differently – In a recent Korn Ferry survey of professionals, 69 percent said the No. 1 way their college experience helped them was to increase their ability to think critically. That philosophy class you took...


What Does ‘Need for Care’ Mean Under FMLA Regulations?



As an HR Knowledge Advisor in SHRM’s HR Knowledge Center, I receive a lot of questions about the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). Every situation is unique, and many can be complex. Administering FMLA leave can make even the most seasoned HR professionals want to pull their hair out. While some questions about the FMLA are straightforward, this one seems to stump many HR professionals: Can an employer deny FMLA leave if an employee is not directly caring for a parent, spouse or child with a serious health condition?...


Emotional and Diversity Intelligence are Inseparable

How are Emotional Intelligence and Diversity intertwined with each other as we work to create healthier, more equitable, and diverse workplaces?

Most of us are now aware that Emotional Intelligence matters A LOT in the workplace. People who don’t ‘play well’ with others and worse, are unaware of their impact, fail at alarming rates. This makes our hiring, retention, and firing jobs much more difficult and our workplaces much more toxic and unwelcoming. The EI considerations in hiring  - Self Awareness, Self Management, Social Awareness, and Relationship Management are the four essential quadrants where EI competencies matter and what...


How and Why Human Resource People Can and Should End Ageism


HR and DEI people have the opportunity and responsibility to end ageism.

It is hardly news to report that the American workplace is not friendly towards older people. For as long as it has existed, in fact, our corporate culture has been less than welcoming towards people of a certain age. Even in today’s litigious climate, where many lawyers are happy to take a case in which a company appears to have illegally discriminated against a person based on a physical attribute, blatant (although hardly ever mentioned or acknowledged) ageism is...


How to Retain Minimum-Wage Employees



As COVID-19 restrictions are lifting across the country, more stores and restaurants are hiring back employees. Most of these jobs will be paid at the minimum wage or at a low wage. Now more than ever, employers want to know how to retain minimum-wage employees.

Recently, a member asked me, “How do you retain minimum-wage employees and stop them from job hopping?” This question made me think about my first job. Although I was making minimum wage, I didn’t mind because I was excited to go to work every day....


6 Ways to Get the Job References You Need

There’s no better way for employers to get direct input about someone than from a reference.

While it might be easy for you to find people who will say nice things about you, you should focus more on those who can speak to your attributes and experiences that would make you right for the job. If it is a global position for instance, or at a company that just went through a merger, you will want to prepare your reference to talk about your experience in those areas.

Here are six more ways I recommend securing the most effective references:...


Do You Know Me?


We all make immediate assumptions about each other - it’s part of our basic survival instinct driven by our reptilian brain. In a nano-second we decide whether the person in front of us is likely to be more or less safe or dangerous, and then we act according to that instant answer, even as more clues to come into focus.

Yes, our instincts, not our assumptions, are mostly reliable, and what Oprah Winfrey calls, “the whisper” happens when our bodies communicate danger messages to our brain. Both are important, and potentially...


Another COVID Symptom: Silence

When recently visiting my Dad in his long-term care facility I noticed a new addition to his floor. A big cage with a lovely bird in it was sitting just outside his room. As I was looking at this, the head nurse wandered by and told me that the bird had a mate for many years and when she passed away the bird stopped making any noises. He was completely silent. If you will pardon the poetic license, we both knew why the caged bird didn’t sing. Grief.

Each of us have been experiencing a form of grief over the...