If I Were Running A Company…Lying

Let me get this out of the way: lying is bad, plain and simple. Lying makes your organization vulnerable of whatever risks there is. However, there are two things we need to tell ourselves. The first is everyone lies and second, if you’re going to lie, you have to understand the different levels of lies.

The Scheming Liar:

The schemer lies to get to a certain position of power, like being an executive. Think about House of Cards where Frank Understood scheme his way to being Vice President of the United States and (spoiler: he becomes President without being elected). The schemer only focuses on themselves and would walk over others to get into a position of power and wealth.

The Selective Liar:

This liar chooses what the person wants to see and hear. They pick the ones that only benefit themselves and the company. They’re the spinners; they try to convince you to be on their side with “their facts.” Think about politicians and public relations try to spin to make their company better or  save face.

The Hustler Liar:

The hustler just wants to get a foot in the door but are not qualified or don’t have access to the resources, so they try to find ways to get in. A perfect example is Steve Masiello, who said he graduated from the University of Kentucky, but was ten credits short. However, his experience playing with Pitino gave him assistant jobs at Manhattan and Louisville (where Pitino is coaching), and then became head coach of Manhattan.

All these liars have one thing in common: they have a goal and are willing to go for it. They believe in the saying, “by every means necessary” to reach to their destination. Can you blame them for that?

If you want to lay the blame for liars in the workplace, it is the hiring managers, the board, and the background providers that are putting the company at-risk if the liars hinder the company. Those people need to be thorough on checking the background of their employees. If they miss something, like Masiello’s degree, it is the organization’s responsibility to handle their mistake. Luckily for Manhattan, Masiello is a good coach and are willing to take responsibility for their mistake. If he was a bad coach, then Manhattan could fire him in an instant and we wouldn’t hear of his issues.

We all don’t want liars in the workplaces, but everyone has lied at one time. It is the organization’s responsibility to seek out if there are any small or huge discrepancies. If they miss it, it is their responsibility and better pray the liar is good and doesn’t hinder your business. If you can bring in results, the baggage reduces the weight for the company to lift.

Jumping into Online Dating

Well, I jumped in to the world online dating and join Match.com. The only reason I joined Match.com was that MLB and Match.com have a partnership where you can find single people who share your favorite team. I was intrigue by it and took a shot.

The result: meh.

I will admit there are some attractive women, attractive women who are out of my league, some are the marrying type, and some that are desperate. However, what do almost all the women on Match.com have in common? They all have the same profile. Here are some of my favorites that were in most profiles I saw:

  • “I want a guy who’s adventurous and funny, but also willing to chill , watch TV, and drink wine.”
  • “I am smart, outgoing, funny.”
  • “I don’t know how to describe myself.”
  • “I let go of the bar scene.”
  • Favorite TV Shows: Scandal, How I Met Your Mother”

I know in recruiting and staffing, I tell people to build your personal brand and distinguish yourself from the rest, but c’mon, you can’t write something that might be different from the others? This is why no one read your profiles and only checks out your pictures because that’s the only unique part about your profile. It might be discriminatory, but that’s what you get of a bland profile.

As for the MLB feature, it’s alright, although when I check some people’s profiles, some do put multiple teams like they want to cover their bases (no pun intended), even having both Nationals and Orioles, and even some have Red Sox and Yankees communities. Personally, it’s better to do a keyword search and narrow your choices from age, religion, politics. I did a keyword search “Nats” and got a good number. Now for some, “Nats” is short for Natalie, but the early search results does mention Nationals fans and/or Nats Park.

Of note, I do see some of friends are on Match.com and frankly, that freaks me out for some reason I can’t understand myself.

As for the responses, nothing much. It’s really a lose-lose situation. If you wink, it’s the same thing as a Facebook poke, but more annoying. It you email or call, some will view you as a stalker, although, some do ask them to email them to open the communications. I’m not the most attractive person, so I guess some view me as Dahmer.

I will say I like the online dating scene and see what’s out there, but it needs to be more efficient. I think people love to have similar traits to relate, but this is why I don’t like the percentage match because if there is a perfect match, what is there to work for on building a relationship? It’s alright to share the same things, but it’s alright to go to the unknown. Maybe that’s why most profiles were vague because they want the same things, and at the same time, be surprised. That’s a hard act to pull.

I don’t mind online dating, but I like the social media because of the random conversations and you’re trying to build a relationship. It’s still, in my opinion, the best route of finding a partner (except meeting face-to-face). However, as in recruiting, you need multiple sources to branch out and find the one (I’ll save the purple squirrel joke for later).

The New Adventures of Old Christine: Revisited

Last week was the premiere of Veep‘s third season starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus. There’s a lot of great reviews of the upcoming third season. We know her talents from Seinfeld and Veep, but an underrated classic that Julia starred in and is getting cult status is The New Adventures of Old Christine.

Old Christine was about Christine Campbell life and neuroses as a single and divorced mother. Why the show is called Old Christine is because his ex-husband, Richard Campbell’s (Clark Gregg from Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D) new girlfriend is also name Christine. Although Christine is neurotic and independent, she has a tight inner circle with his brother, Matthew (Hamish Linklater of The Crazy Ones) and best friend, Barb (Wanda Sykes).

The show’s cache in the beginning was Julia Louis-Dreyfus realistic portrayal of a divorce mother dealing with her kid; her own business; the awkward inner circle, which includes her ex-husband; getting involve with her son’s school and the rest of the parents, and her dating life. While the show did revolve around Old Christine, it was slowly becoming an ensemble each episode with the main characters getting equal opportunities to shine.

It was interesting that when the show begin, ratings were very good and Julia-Louis-Dreyfus broke the “Seinfeld Curse.” However, each season, the show’s ratings decline, but you can say it wasn’t their fault.

There’s two reasons why Old Christine was not a hit. The first was CBS moved around the show a lot of. Old Christine‘s biggest audience was when they were following Two and a Half Men (when they were the #1 comedy). When, they were moved after the second season, CBS wanted to maximize the show’s exposure, but failed.

The second reason was the writers’ strike in 2007 that altered most of the shows and force CBS to pick up ten, instead of thirteen, episodes of Old Christine and thus the divide between network and show began. Although Old Christine was winning in some demos, it was not a bonafide hit. In May 2010, CBS cancelled Old Christine and did not reach network syndication.

As of now, Old Christine was picked up by Lifetime and Nickelodeon (specifically, NickMom, which is on Nick Jr. on evenings (there’s a quiz later)) and has develop a cult following. The main reason is Julia-Louis Dreyfus rise from supporting player to the Queen of Comedy at age 53. Another reason is how great the supporting cast was, from Hamish, Clark, Wanda, even the two elitist moms. The only weak spot from Old Christine was New Christine. She seemed that she really didn’t want any part of that circle. Finally, the show is a throwback sitcom where telling jokes and situations were real and funny. Although it had a studio audience, you felt it was authentic and genuine because the cast made it real.

People will remember Julia for Seinfeld and Veep and she still be known as one the great comedic actresses of our time, but Old Christine was the bridge for Julia (and others) from great to greatest.

 

If I Were Running A Company…Mozilla

Brendan Eich resigned from Mozilla as their CEO. The likely reason was Eich donated money for Proposition 8 in California, banning same-sex marriage in the state. When he was announced as CEO, a few executives resigned and there were protests of his hire. A couple weeks after he was hired, he’s out. While, I disagree on Eich’s stance on gay marriage, that doesn’t mean I don’t want to work with him.

Why Mozilla and Eich agree to “part ways” is the potential backlash of decrease users and revenue. I bolded “potential” because we have no idea the actual effects of Eich’s political background that would hurt Mozilla. Unless Mozilla has in-depth statistics that more gays use Mozilla, I find this to be fickle on the protestors and on Mozilla.

Why does it matter your CEO spend money on a stance you don’t like? It is his right of what he wants to do. It is your right to have a voice. However, if Eich intentionally created rules and guidelines about limiting gays getting benefits and pay, that’s a different story. As far as I know, I don’t think he was limiting certain people and if it were the case, he would not being hired in the first place.

This is about some people’s groupthink: people want to work with the same beliefs, the same favorites, same activities, and others. It’s ironic that when we encourage diversity, we encourage to have more people of color and women in leadership roles because it’s great for “diversity” initiatives. You’re hearing the same thing on Letterman’s successor. What about the best person for the job? Would the best person, no matter the sex and color, be open-minded on the business instead of the politics of the business?

There are organizations that are slanted, which is fine because they want to establish that culture. However, in most businesses, it is about their product and services. Here’s the secret in business: when you talk with someone for B2B, it’s someone you want to talk to. Businesses understand diversity is not to cover affirmative action, but to cover different audiences. What Brendan Eich did wrong is standing up to his beliefs and he got ridicule. What everyone else did wrong was a lack of tolerance. If there is no tolerance, you can’t have diversity, which everyone wants. We (including myself) still need to learn that lesson.

If I Were Running A Company…Starting Tip for April 7, 2014

Spring is Here. Work can be done now.

Your 2014 Washington Nationals Preview

2011 was the bridge gap to 2012.

2012 was when the Nationals were supposed to be good. They were not good, but great by winning the NL East and the best record in baseball.

2013: nearly everyone’s pick the Nats to the World Series. However, they couldn’t met those lofty expectations and won 86 games, 4 games out of the second wild card.

2014 has the same feel as 2012 but with better expectations. You feel there’s a sense of urgency in this team because of what happened last year. Also, there’s a new regime at the manager’s spot (and to a certain extent, the marketing department), so everyone in the organization has to prove something this year.

Hitting

This is virtually the same lineup from last year, and the only real difference is Anthony Rendon is your everyday second baseman and Danny Espinosa is now a utility infielder. There should be a lot of improvement from Span now knowing the National League, Bryce Harper, Ryan Zimmerman, and Wilson Ramos being healthy, and Adam LaRoche’s contract year. The new, aggressive approach installed by Matt Williams will have a different feel to Davey’s “Earl Weaver” Ball.

Bench

According to Serious Jammage, the 2012 Nats bench WAR was 3.4. In 2013, it dipped to -3. That’s a 6 point difference. The problem last year was Rizzo stuck with the same bench that helped the Nats in 2012. This season, the bench had a major overhaul with the addition of Nate McLouth, switch-hitting catcher Jose Lobaton, and Kevin Frandsen, in addition to Espinosa and Scott Hairston. The bench is more veteran-laden, which can go a long way back to a positive WAR.

Starting Pitching

As of now, the Nats have 3 top pitchers and one of the best rotations in baseball with Strasburg, Gio Gonzalez, and Jordan Zimmermann. When Doug Fister comes into the rotation in May, at the earliest, it is likely the best rotation in baseball. The staff (with the exception of Zimmermann) was hurt by a terrible defense that had numerous issues. With new defensive coordinator, Mark Weidemaier, at the helm, the defense should improve. In addition, Ryan Zimmerman is healthy and making routine plays at third, so expect the ERA and FIP to reduce this season.

Bullpen

Bullpens are volatile and the Nats experience that last year with Storen’s worst season, no dominant lefty reliever, and Rafael Soriano’s inconsistency. This year, they traded for Jerry Blevins from Oakland and Ross Detwiler moving to the bullpen after inconsistency in the starting role. The bullpen should rebound with Storen new pitching stance, Clippard’s consistency and Soriano’s contract year (that’s not saying much). Expect the same this year.

Manager

The reason why Davey was a great manager is that he gave freedom to the players and acted as a teacher of some sort. It helped an eager 2012 team go to the postseason. Last year, the Nats had an air of arrogance and part of that was Davey (“World Series or Bust”). This year, it is in the hands of Matt Williams to mold this team back to the postseason. From spring training, it looks like the Nats will be aggressive at the base pads and play a little small ball. In addition, with Mark Weidemaier at the helm, expect the Nats to employ more shifts and defensive strategy. While Davey made the Nats a good to great team, Matt Williams is trying to make this a complete team

Prediction

This is dangerous territory, but the Nats will win the NL East because of a variety of factors. Nats, on paper, do have close of a complete team. The other main factor is the Braves caught the injury bug with Kris Medlen and Brandon Beachy out for the year and the NL East is depleted, with the exception of the Miami Marlins, who could be the surprise team to make the postseason. In addition, this could be the best shot the Nats to win the World Series because in 2015, the Braves will be back healthy, the Marlins might be good, the Mets get back Matt Harvey, and the Phillies are screwed.
It is the Nats time or it could be a lost opportunity. I guess I’m not the only one.

If I Were Running A Company…Conference Season

Spring is here and when flowers bloom and warmer temperatures arrive, you know there’s one thing in mind: Conference Season!

Here are a few things about my take on conferences:

  1. Think of conferences as the adult version of Spring Break. You do get to learn and network, but it is also the place to let loose and have an occasional embarrassing selfie.
  2. You have tons of sessions and events, but conferences are great for networking. There will be a lot of people, but thanks to technology, you can have meetups by location, industry, skills, hotel spot, whatever the case. You can see faces from the names you saw.
  3. Have a game plan at conferences…and then throw it away if you found a better opportunity.
  4. Divide and Conquer. The best conferences are the ones that are diverse in subject matter and has something for everyone. In 2005, I attended my first SHRM Conference and I didn’t know what to expect. One of the better sessions I attended was not a presentation, but a roundtable discussion on HR in different industries. I went to “media” because that’s the industry I wanted to work, but only two other people came, but they were moderators. Frankly, a missed opportunity not only for SHRM, but for the attendees if they want to know the industry, which I think is HR’s weakest attribute then and now.
  5. There’s lots of swag to pick up. If you pick up too much, share it with the rest of the employees back at work.
  6. You’re not going to win the grand prize at a vendor booth. If you do win, congratulations. If not, you can still buy next door at your conference.
  7. Before the conference, do gameplan with your department on what they need to know which vendors to go to. They actually have to do something beyond giving out swag.
  8. Attend the sessions you want to attend, either for personal or business. This is your conference.
  9. Although conferences are big, it’s also the best time to have one-to-ones. Take advantage of it.
  10. I’m in the minority here, but presentations don’t do it for me. Most presentations intend to be inspiring than learning. There has been studies that any presentation works, it’s how you take in the information.                                                                                 I personally prefer panels since you get a variety of answers and everyone is happy.
  11. Have fun!

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