Back in March, I wrote about my attempts to become better at managing my energy (vs. focusing simply on managing my time). My results have been mixed, at best, largely because I find that it’s hard to a) break old habits and b) make new habits stick. Our agency recently participated in an Organization and Efficiency Workshop, facilitated by GG Johnston, and she turned us on to an interesting quiz by Gretchen Rubin that looks at how individuals respond to expectations. Called The Four Tendencies, the theory is that how you respond to expectations directly impacts how you form new habits – thus the connection to my energy management project.
What do you discuss with your TSA agent?
Believe it or not, that’s a question I often ask myself as I approach the gatekeepers of airport security. Is it the weather? Do I venture a joke about the tumultuous sea of humanity I just traversed? Should I preemptively acknowledge the fact that my ID looks like it’s been acid washed (it does)?
Thankfully, that question was answered for me on my latest trip.
“Thank you Officer Mady,” I said to the agent. “Thanks for making sure that doubled-edged knife didn’t make it on my flight.”
You see, someone who works for the Transportation Security Administration within the Charleston International Airport has posted “Great Catch” signs throughout airport security lines — an arena where eyes are prone to wander and likely land on graphic images of weapons.
But instead of simply declaring these items aren’t allowed in your carry-on (duh), beneath the images are stories about how Charleston TSA agents have detected these very items during the course of security screenings.
All of a sudden, Officer Smith and I had something to talk about.
Read more after the jump…
National Public Radio and The Wall Street Journal recently did stories about how some employers are cutting back on allowing employees to work from home, citing the need to have people together to enhance creativity and collaboration.
A number of large companies in recent years announced similar measures – Yahoo, HP and IBM – all began to recall home-based employees to work in the office.
Still, teleworking is extremely widespread. According to the Society for Human Resource Management, 40 percent of employers allow employees to regularly work from home.
We are excited to partner with PlatteForum to help advance their art and learning lab through our Get Grounded Foundation. PlatteForum is a non-profit organization that supports contemporary artists and underserved youth in metro Denver through long-term art programs. Their programs allow youth to collaborate with artists in residence to plan, produce and exhibit a body of work in an environment where artistic excellence is highly valued.
The Denver Post has confirmed that it is moving its reporters, editors and executive staff from its downtown offices to space in its Adams County printing facility. This is just the latest short-sighted decision that the out-of-state owners have foisted on the paper’s talented and hard-working reporters and editors.
Proximity and access are business necessities, a truism that applies both to reporters and public relations executives. Editors are famous for throwing reporters out of the newsroom so they can interact with the public to identify potential stories. And public relations executives should be engaging with their clients face-to-face whenever possible to keep those relationships strong.
GroundFloor Media (GFM) is truly incredible when it comes to encouraging employees to find a work/life blend. They absolutely walk the talk of allowing team members to work whenever and wherever – as long as they get their work done. That being said, as a working mom, I still find that “the juggle” is very real and, at times, overwhelming. I start strong at the beginning of every week, but am typically exhausted and dragging myself across the finish line by Friday. So, I recently embarked on a personal journey to try to find a way to remedy that – so that I can be better at both of my jobs (PR and mom).
We’ve got quite a few book worms at GroundFloor Media (GFM) and CenterTable. Then there are the rest of us who (thanks to #content) read a ton of blog posts, tweets and articles throughout the year but don’t get around to reading nearly as many books as we’d like.
One of the many great parts about the holidays is having a few days to dig in, potentially ditch the phone (gasp!), and read a good old-fashioned book or two. Along those lines, here are a couple that come highly recommended from our team, and that tie back to social media/digital strategy, business and company culture. If you’re looking for a few last minute holiday reading recommendations, we hope this helps. Read more after the jump…
I love great ideas! Especially the ones that start out small but then revolutionize an industry. In 2007, a like-minded group of individuals, including Pam Warhurst and Mary Clear, wanted to find a way in which everyone could help improve their own community. Their solution: They taught their local residents to take control of their community through gardening and eating.
“The answer was food,” said Warhurst in her TED Talk. “Everyone understands food. Food gets people talking; even better, it inspires people to take action.” They started with small herb gardens and community plots in a Northern England town called Todmorden. Then they planted corn in front of a police station, fruit trees on the sides of roads, vegetables in front of the senior center, and even planted gardens in the cemetery, where “things grow really well because the soil is really good!” Read more after the jump…
Facebook? More like Political-Argument-Book, am I right?
I’m told the best way to manage negativity is to focus on the positive, so here are five things that – as a person who works day in and day out on social platforms – I’m thankful for right now:
- The new iOS Update – Sure, they messed with the ordering of our email threads and I had to restore my touch-to-open home button functionality…but it’s all worth it when you can send GIF messages to your friends. Something I never knew I needed, but now I can’t imagine living without.
- The forthcoming link/tags on Instagram – They’re not available to everyone just yet, but even the thought of finally being able to link to a website within your Instagram posts literally makes me smile.
- My Mophie – I’m traveling as I write this, and this may sound trivial, but I’m truly thankful to not be sitting on an airport carpet next to what is shockingly the only power outlet within five gates.
- Free Wi-Fi – Sometimes it’s the obvious things. Take one minute and think about what we’d all do without Wi-Fi. We’d still have real time news to keep up with, endless work demands via email and hilarious dog videos to watch…but we wouldn’t be able to access any of it without an Ethernet connection or an all-too-often sketchy cellular signal. Thank you for that quick “Dogs are Amazing” video download, Wi-Fi.
- A Crazy Smart and Amazing Team – If you didn’t hear, GFM/CenterTable made the Top 5 of Outside Magazine’s Best Places to Work list for the fourth straight year. Work is infinitely more fulfilling, less stressful and straight up fantastically fun when you’re surrounded by great people and great clients.
Take a minute and practice some gratitude this week (and the next, and the following…), even if it only has to do with the percentage of battery you have left on your phone.
My favorite HR lesson came from a soon-to-be-retired lawyer at a Fortune 200 technology company. Tasked with giving an annual reminder to managers about appropriate behavior at our company’s various holiday parties, he decided to condense a 60-minute training down to about five minutes – and it largely centered around his “Two-drink Theorem.”
The theory held that sexual harassment allegations would overwhelmingly be the problem that arose from our company’s parties. And his rules of thumb were:
- Someone accused of sexual harassment who has consumed one drink or less will be determined not to have committed sexual harassment (although their behavior may still be loutish).
- Someone accused of sexual harassment who has consumed three or more drinks will be determined to have committed sexual harassment.
- It is the person who has consumed two drinks that causes the most problems when trying to assess guilt.
His primary takeaway? Only let people have a single drink at holiday parties. Or give them three so his legal staff could just immediately settle claims rather than wasting their time investigating them first. I think he was kidding about that part.
I was reminded of this theory recently when I saw that staffing firm Robert Half has released a