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There is a big misconception out there that all HR folks are mean, evil or just plain no fun. We are always making rules and regulations, you can’t joke around us and we manipulate employees all the time for the good of the company. Sustained! Oops I mean, I object! Not all HR folks are tools. We are human too, if you stick us, we will bleed and the blood is usually red. But seriously, we don’t intend to be all those things, and we didn’t start out that way. We enjoy a good laugh. We have politically incorrect thoughts. We love sarcasm too. Just look at the television show “the Office” it’s funny because it’s true.
What’s my point? Here is it, the next time your HR department sends out a rule, or a policy holds a dry boring seminar on harassment or diversity, suggests disciplinary action, questions your intention, or stops you from ordering male/female strippers at the company Christmas party. Don’t blame us, BLAME YOUR FRICKIN’ CO-WORKERS.
Believe it or not, we do not sit around and wonder what we can do to make your life miserable. We want to enjoy new technology just like the next guy. We want to be proactive and use these things to make work better, however each and every time something new comes out, someone finds a way to use it for something inappropriate it.
Late 1980’s early ‘90’s email is all the rage. You can send a letter, a note or other communication in a flash. No more snail mail. No more waiting for that inner office mail. Suddenly, there are claims of harassment, of all kinds. There are complaints of inappropriate jokes and images being sent, and the loss of productivity. Employees that claimed to be overworked now have time to send a bunch of emails per day, all day. ABUSE! Alright next, the internet takes off. Thank you Al Gore. So now you have folks “surfing” the web all day long, and sending emails. ABUSE! After that came IM, good ole instant messages…Do I need to lay it out? ABUSE! Same with cell phones, social media, smart phones, laptops, and blogs.
Now since your co-worker decided to send something racial, or sexual, or harassing, or just nasty! We, HR, got to stop surfing the net, and create a policy against the usage/abuse of this new thing. Do you think we’d have all these laws if your co-workers would do the right thing in the first place? Anytime a super nerd comes up something great, a super jerk finds a way to use it for something in offensive. Therefore we have to react. When I say co-worker, I mean managers, supervisors, HR folks too. Yeah! HR folks have been guilty of violating the very rules they create, the very laws we asked to uphold and enforce. I blame my co-workers!
This is not a post about morality or ethics, it’s about how “man” (a human being) finds a way to gratify his urges at any risk, at any time, at any place. Because of it, someone has to protect him from himself. So when that policy defining email or manual is sent out, just look over to your co-worker and say “It’s your fault.”

The recent pending case against Wal-Mart, got me thinking,1.5M women are suing for Equal Pay and Sex discrimination, what is the average salary in America? What is the average male salary? The average female salary? What is the average salary in my area? and finally what about breaking it down along lines of race?
I’ve been researching this for a couple of days, and here is what I found. First, there is a lot of data out there, I am using several articles from as recent as 2007. For sake of this article we will leave out education levels (although they impact salary immensely).
So here we go, the average US male income is somewhere around $47k per year. Women earn about 72% of that, which is $34k. Black males typically earn about 75% of white male salaries.
In Memphis, the average salary is for a white male is $32k. Female is $26k. So based on national averages black males would earn around 75% of white males which is $24k.
This does not include information from the lastest Census. (because I could not find it) and it does not represent family (men and women or multiple income families) income. So, is the playing field level? No, look at coaches salaries in sports. Espn had a great statistic regarding white male coaches and black male coaches, which earn about $1.1M less (on average). Look at the Presidents of the United States, Barack Obama he is worth $5M, previous President, is worth $20M, and Clinton is worth $38M.
If you are beating these averages, good for you. But just think whatever you make, someone doing the same thing is making more, and they may be sitting next you.

Ever take a job and wish you hadn’t? Or it starts out great then all of a sudden wham-o! Or better yet,  you have been unemployed for so long that you just want to hear “You’re Hired!” So you take the job for fear that there may not be another offer. Well this is a nice article on why you may want to hold out.

Wal-Mart, America’s biggest employer, is being accused of discriminating against its target market…WOMEN. After reading this article, I wonder how this breaks down in other demographical areas.

Read this, and tell me what you think…How did HR let this happen?

Do you have a tattoo? Do you have a bunch of tattoos? Seems the whole world is inked nowadays. Look at sports and its hard to find someone without a tattoo. I’m surprised when I see a tattoo peak out of a sleave, or shirt or someplace. I’m sure a tat has cost someone their job. Question is, is that legal? What should you do if  you’re inked? And as a  HR Rep, what do you do when you have heavily tattooed applicants?

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March 2011
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