#CarnivalofHR: Scary Tales from HR

It’s that time of year where we typically think of witches, candy and what we’re going to use to spike the Halloween punch.  This year, it seems to be more about the widespread scary clown sightings.  That said, I’m still a fan of watching scary movies- the cheesier, the better.

With that in mind, I decided to have a scary theme for this month’s Carnival of HR.  Anyone who works in Human Resources knows that it can be scary from time to time.  We’ve all had employees that went a little crazy, situations that seemed to fall apart no matter how hard we tried to make them work, and technology that scared us to death.  I think I’ll start by sharing a “scary HCM” blast from the past that is still relevant today, then a few new posts from the industry influencers who will show you how scary it is out there in the trenches.  First up, my favorite video of China Gorman sharing HR Horror Stories with me.  Trust me, it’s good and even my hairstyle is scary!

 

Westworld

Westworld has to be one of my favorite scary movies of all time.  Made in 1973, I can remember my Dad taking me to the movie theater to see this when I was a very little girl.  What was he thinking?!?  If you haven’t seen it, or haven’t watched in awhile, it’s a great story of how AI has gone horribly wrong.  It makes me think about employees being scared the robots will take their jobs.  We have two great posts that tackle this topic.  First up, Steve Boese hits us with We are Pretty Sure Robots Will Take All the Jobs- Just Not OUR Job.  As always, Steve backs this up with data.  Next up is Ben Plant from Navigo News.  He shares Is Your Job in Danger of Being Automated? Click through to see if your job makes the list!

SAW

One of my all time favorite scary movies is SAW and most of the sequels.  I’m a sucker for going to those movies alone to make it even more scary than having someone to grab.  What scares me the most about SAW is that the situations are all caused by things people should already know.  It’s when the person doesn’t pay attention to the information or situation that they end up in the evil, life-threatening devices created by a madman.  Along those lines, but hopefully not as severe in consequences, are people who don’t know how their company operates and makes money.  You’d be surprised how many employees, and leaders, do not fully understand the process.  Ben Eubanks from Lighthouse Research & Advisory gives us some insight to help keep the boogeyman away.  Oops! How Failing an Interview Question Taught Her About HR Strategy.

Sleeping With the Enemy

While not a true horror movie, Sleeping with the Enemy as a suspenseful thriller has always kept me on the edge of my seat.  The idea that someone you think you know or can trust is really a psychopath, or worse, is the stuff real nightmares are made of.  What if Julia Roberts’ character had checked her husband’s background before marrying him?  It may have turned out a whole different way.  How does this play out in the world of work?  Well, there is still a stir about how much we should research our candidates online before we make an offer.  Ben Plant at Navigo News shares 4 Things To Check in a Candidate’s Facebook Profile to provide some insight on just how far we should go to not hire that “enemy” candidate.

The Witch

Now, bear with me on this next comparison.  The Witch is one of the best made modern horror stories.  Set in the 1700’s in New England, it’s a story of a family that strikes out on their own to create a life and settlement.  At that time, witchcraft was one of the scariest things to those settlers and the movie captures how a very raw, basic way of life can be turned upside down by something very scary.  This brings us to Robin Schooling and her post HR and the Digital Bubble.  Robin shares stories of HR teams who are still forced to operate using archaic tools and how technology can be wanted, but feared.

The Temp and Pacific Heights

It almost goes without saying that any kind of movie that has a stalking dimension is scary.  Whether it was watching The Temp or Pacific Heights, the stories are similar in that people are not always as nice as they present themselves.  They do scary, creepy things.  Check out this post if you’ve ever considered the question, “Do You Know Who You Work With?

Halloween

We’re almost to the end of the carnival and I may have saved the best for last.  What is a good scarefest without mention of Mike Myers and Halloween?  Maybe it was his scary white, expressionless face.  Maybe it was the way he moved slowly after his prey.  Either way, he epitomizes all the key elements of a good scary character.  And like many good scary stories, there are SO many chapters so you can get your fix.  Similarly, I decided there has to be some industry leader out there with enough scary content to make a series.  I found it!  Mike Haberman.

Now, if you know or follow Mike, he is one of the nicest men you’ll ever meet.  He’s also incredibly smart and intuitive and his writing is always the type that teaches lessons.  Check out these three we’ll call:

Halloween: A Story of Sexual Harassment and Bad HR

Halloween 2: Onionhead in the Workplace

Halloween 3: Bit By Generosity in Pay

So, there you have it! I hope you have as much fun reading these as I did.  Stay safe this Halloween!

 

Halloween: To Dress Up Or Not To Dress Up

To dress up or not to dress up, that is the question…

Today is Halloween and thousands of employees are dressing up in costume across this great country.  They don their scariest, most political or cutest costumes in hopes of winning the office costume contest.  But just how many people actually participate in this ritual?

Well, from the looks of my FaceBook sream, I’d say that a ton of my friends work at companies that celebrate the holiday. After all, it’s fairly non-controversial, save for the occasional employee that shows up in a not-so-work-appropriate getup.  So, why do companies participate and why do some avoid it?  I found a fun survey on GlassDoor that gives us the scoop.  Consider the facts:

  • The survey shows that two out of five companies (40%) celebrate Halloween in the office.  The downside is that 48% of HR professionals, office managers or administrative assistants are likely to be on point for planning any celebrations.
  • More than half (52%) of employees say they are likely or very likely to participate in employer-hosted Halloween fun.
  • Nearly half (46%) of employees aren’t sure if their employer has a policy around work-appropriate Halloween attire.  So here we are, back to the HR policy creation.
  • Nearly one in three (29%) hope their boss will dress up for Halloween at work.

So, what say you?  Do you work in an office or company that celebrates the ghouls?  Does it lead to some HR horror stories?  Be sure to share it all in the comments and for more fun Halloween survey results, check out the GlassDoor blog.

Can You Ever Go Back? Yes, “Even Further”

Happy Halloween! Today is a day of pumpkin carving, bonfires, amassing candy, giggles, costumes, goblins, and tricks-&-treats.  Oh, and football if you live in a household like mine.  I’ve spent the entire weekend having fun all related to this holiday.  Which got me thinking….

People often say, “You can never go back.”

You can’t relive the past because it will never be as good as you remember.  Well, when Halloween rolls around where I live, we do our best to bring back some of the fun memories.  My good friend Dave has a bus he calls “Even Further”.

Even Further

We break out the bus twice a year…once for the St. Louis Mardi Gras parade and the second time is Halloween.  All the adults dress up and many try to dress up around a theme.

Karen Schlemmer & Trish (sisters)

This year the theme was an 80’s wedding party.  All the ladies wore their worst bridesmaid or prom dress and the guys showed up in 80’s tuxes, plaid suits, and ruffle shirts.  We even had a priest.  I tried on every ugly bridesmaid dress I had.  No luck in fitting into any of them, although the act of trying them on sure was fun.  So, I rummaged through all my old prom dresses at my mom’s house and managed to find one that still fit.  Score!  Then, I went to the wig store and found an 80’s style wig that closely resembled my hair from 1988- 1994.  Double score!!

You’ll have to be the judge of whether or not I managed to recapture any of the old look from my 1988 Junior Prom.  I definitely recaptured as much of the fun.

Oakville High School Jr. Prom 1988