This week’s guru
Mouse potato threat to big cheeses
Guru has searched the web to update HR professionals with the latest
additions to the workplace vocabulary.
Blamestorming: Sitting around in a group, discussing why a deadline was
missed or a project failed, and who was responsible.
Seagull manager: An interim manager who flies in, makes a lot of noise,
craps on everything, and then leaves.
Assmosis: The process by which some people seem to absorb success and
advancement by kissing up to the boss rather than by working hard.
Salmon day: The experience of spending an entire day swimming upstream only
to get screwed and die.
Mouse potato: The online, wired generation’s answer to the couch potato.
Stress puppy: A person who seems to thrive on being stressed out and whiney.
Percussive maintenance: The fine art of beating an electronic device with a
hard implement to get it to work again.
Textbook tips given to publishing reject
Guru has suffered his share of rejections in life; universities, jobs, women
– he’s been knocked back by them all at some point or other.
So he sympathised with the experience of a disciple’s rejection at the hands
of the Pearson Group.
Mark, a senior HR executive who wishes to remain anonymous, explained:
"I recently applied for an HR director position for part of the Pearson
Group, which includes Pearson Education and Penguin Books.
"All seemed to go well. My CV was acknowledged, the telephone interview
was conducted with some competence, and then – lo and behold – a week later, a
package arrives at the house.
"Inside said package is a letter of rejection, with the final paragraph
stating: ‘I enclose a copy of the Penguin Guide to Employment Rights which you
might find useful’.
"Are they indicating that my knowledge of employment law appeared so
woeful that I needed a quick refresher? Or perhaps they are encouraging me to
claim against them as I may have felt that I was discriminated against."
Guru will be making a job application to the Pearson Group to secure his own
free copy of the Penguin employment rights guide asap.
Pigeon work keeps graduate at bottom of the pecking order
The challenge for senior HR executives to become business partners and align
people management strategies with business needs is a complex and exciting one.
However, last week Guru received an e-mail from a self-proclaimed ‘HR
graduate trainee pond-scum’ at a large financial institution, who claimed her
job could be carried out by a bird brain.
The young lady – who wished to remain anonymous – explained her exciting
role at a forthcoming HR conference: "I will be sitting in the control/
projecting box, and when one of the big-cheese presenters presses a button to
make a light come on, I will forward their presentation by one slide.
"It is amazing there won’t be remote control at a state-of-the-art HR
conference in a world- leading business. And I wonder why we can’t use a
trained pigeon for the slide-moving.
"I realise that the CEO’s wrath will come down on me if I neglect to
press a button at the right time. It is one of those truly challenging and
rewarding development opportunities that will result in no reward when I do it
right, and much public embarrassment if I don’t.
"When pigeons peck a button in response to a light (and they are good
at that) they tend to get a food pellet. I hope there will be a similar
arrangement for me."
Guru would like to reassure this junior disciple that in the grand scheme of
things, all of us (even HR directors) are simple pigeons hoping for a food
pellet a day before we die all alone in the gutter.