Years ago I read a wonderful post by Ted Coine titled, Dear CEO: Who tells you when your baby is ugly?
The post resonated loudly, because as an employee and as a customer I have wondered…
Over the past 41 days, I’ve asked that question at an increasingly high level…
Today I visited with a neighbor that was emphasizing how much the company her husband works for values integrity.
As she shared her thoughts I imagined the difference between the list of core values that hang on walls and collect dust, and those that are used to guide decisions.
She went on to share a story about a compound that the company had decided they would not continue to use for their expat’s housing because of extraordinary cost.
The first thing the company did was to decide that anyone that was already living there could stay.
- (A choice that will cost the company a few extra dollars but prevents unnecessary stress on families. And keeps their workers more focused on their jobs.)
The second decision came when a new executive moved to the area and insisted on living in that compound.
Several years ago I sat in a room full of volunteers that were being trained to go into schools and work with children that were at risk of dropping out. One of our exercises was a simulation that was designed to help us better understand the day-to-day realities for their families.
- We were divided up into small groups.
- Each one of us was given a role to play.
- Then we were given a real life problem that needed to be solved.
- And a name of a place we needed to go to for help.
In the simulation I was the small child of a single mother that had no car.
- “My mother” needed food and a job and childcare.
The simulation was timed to help us understand everything that she needed to accomplish in one day – just to bring home food. (Let alone finding a job or daycare.)
Each time we got off the simulated bus, we walked into a facility and stood in a long line. To eventually be re-directed to another place for services that was across town with different operating hours and another long line.
My job was to simulate how a child begins to act as a few hours becomes a day without food, without a nap, without play.
In the 90’s I read The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People for the first time.
I immediately made my own infographic of the four quadrants and added the quotes below and put them in my purse and in my planner.
Earlier this week we launched a new series titled what does HR really stand for: Human Resources or Human Remains?
When I reached out to my network asking them to participate in this series, I shared an excerpt of a conversation I had with someone with an MBA and years of HR experience.
“Chery I have been in HR for X number of years, I have my MBA, I’ve attended tons of seminars and I’ve NEVER heard anyone talk about the HUMANS.“
And then I asked these questions:
- How do you balance the need to protect the company from lawsuits with the needs of the real live human beings you serve?
- What tips do you have for organizations that are seeking to bring the Human back to Human Resources?
This post is the second in the series and was written my another Lead Change Member and Co-Author of The Character-Based Leader Book, Mary Schaefer. Mary is the President of Artemis Path, Inc. and her passion is challenging others to Reimagine Work. This is what Mary had to say…