How are your sandwiches?

There is a classic Peanuts comic strip that shows Charlie Brown opening his lunch on a few consecutive days and dreading what he finds. Finally, Lucy asks Charlie Brown who makes his sandwiches. He says that he does! Many of us continue to go to work day after day, fully aware that we can do better but not doing whatever it takes to change our destinies. How are your sandwiches? If you have read this far, the answer is probably not so great. Isn’t it time to make a new one? I speak and write extensively about the modern workplace, and I have and continue to represent both employers and employees. And, when I provide guidance it is not about picking sides, or convincing you that employers are bad and employees are good. Instead, it is about providing you with a guide to the modern workplace—the loyalty-free workplace—so that you can … Continue reading

159,544 likes and 11,575 comments? Seriously?

Last week Oleg Vishnepolsky, the Global CTO at DailyMail Online & Metro.Co.Uk, posted a LinkedIn comment saying that he once hired (gasp!) a person over 50 years of age. Oleg went on to write about the resistance he had to overcome when making this decision, being on the receiving ends of comments such as 1) the candidate will never work hard enough; 2) the candidate will not fit in our culture; 3) the candidate is overqualified etc.  Turns out, Oleg writes, the candidate ended up being one of the best hires he ever made. The content of this post did not surprise me but what did was that, within just a short period of time, 159,544 people liked the post and 11,575 people took the time to post a comment. There were some comments that recognized the skills of 50+ workers—perhaps these individuals do not have any hiring authority. However, there were … Continue reading

Policing Medical Practice Employees After Work

American Medical News, August 26, 2013 Doctors can try to regulate staff actions outside the office, but they must watch what they try to stamp out and how they do it. The University of Pennsylvania Health System and its affiliates recently joined Cleveland Clinic and other hospitals in banning the employment of smokers. Proponents say such policies lower health care costs and improve employee and community health. Others believe these restrictions may be the beginning of a slippery ethical slope in which employees can be fired or banned for personal decisions and activities unrelated to their specific jobs. Read the full article at : … Continue reading

Pondering Whether to Make Amends

New York Times, May 3, 2013 I have another take on the issue of former bosses who give poor references, or who damn people with faint praise (“Weeding Out the Bad Reference,” April 20). For a number of years, I was in a very good position to advance in my field. I solicited references who indicated that they’d be strongly supportive. I had some very positive interviews with potential employers, but invariably their interest would evaporate. Eventually I came to understand that one reference – an enthusiastic supporter to my face – was evidently saying awful things about me. (I have no idea what.) I stopped listing him as a reference, but I’m in a specialized field in which it’s not difficult to learn about open positions, and I discovered that in some cases he was bad-mouthing me anyway. Read the full article at : … Continue reading

Regulating Employee Behavior Off-The-Clock

You’re a respiratory therapist on an oncology unit and a long-time smoker. In fact, you’re often observed by fellow employees and sometimes patients taking smoke breaks in close proximity to the hospital grounds.You’re a department manager at a highly regarded health care system and an exotic dancer when you’re not “on the clock,” although the fact that you’re in a salaried position makes determining what’s “off the clock” somewhat challenging. You’re a sleep technologist at a sleep center in a small community and you also write a blog on “stupid medical errors” in your spare time. Employees should be aware of employers policies that regulate off-duty behavior, like blogging about stupid medical errors. Could any of these activities create problems for these individuals or their employers? Would the problems be significant enough that their jobs might actually be in jeopardy? Read more here…. … Continue reading

Say ‘Cheese’ : The Pros & Cons of Employee Photos

Emplicity, Employee Management Made Simple, 2011 Employee photos are often used on company recruiting sites, in annual reports and to promote an organization’s products and services. But that doesn’t mean that every employee welcomes such opportunities. “Pictures help us transform from a faceless company to people that customers can relate to,” said James Dunworth of ECigaretteDirect in the U.K. “The personal service that we as a small company offer to customers is one advantage that we have over large companies. Photos of our staff reinforce this.” Read the full article at : … Continue reading