What Your HR Department Can Learn From Jazz
Sylvia Ann Hewlett is an economist and the founding president of the Center for Work-Life Policy where she directs the “Hidden Brain Drain”—a task force of 35 global companies committed to fully realize female and minority talent over the lifespan. She also heads up the Gender and Policy Program at the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University. She is the author of six critically acclaimed nonfiction books and her articles have appeared in the New York Times, the Financial Times, and the International Herald Tribune. Hewlett has taught at Cambridge, Columbia and Princeton Universities and held fellowships at the Institute for Public Policy Research in London and the Center for the Study of Values in Public Life at Harvard. A Kennedy Scholar and graduate of Cambridge University, she earned her Ph.D. degree in economics at London University.
Sylvia Hewlett: I think jazz is the right metaphor. It's freedom within form. Our new demographic research coming out in July really shows that what Gen Y wants, and is actually what boomers want too, is actually to stay with an employer/company that they had admire. But to mix and match, to ebb and flow, to have much more of freedom within form, and to have a long view.
One of the biggest yearnings of these two juggernaut generations, and just remember Gen Y 80 million of them in the US, and only 37 million Xs, so this is a huge generation on our doorsteps beginning to climb up the professional ranks. What they want within the context of loyal attachment to an employer and intense periods of work is odyssey. The ability to search and quest for meaning, to maybe work for six weeks in Africa, and then absolutely get down to work back on the ranch again.
I think that we are seeing a sea change in attitudes towards work and a much more fluid and creative take on what a 360 degree, full round work experience should look like.
Obviously companies like Google or Genzyme, some of the smaller innovative talent machines out there, are precisely allowing this.
But there is a tension between loyalty and quest, but it can be totally handled by allowing this jazz-like arrangement and I think that's where we're heading.
Smart companies learn to create work environments that promote freedom within form.
Swiss researchers identify new dangers of modern cocaine.
- Cocaine cut with anti-worming adulterant levamisole may cause brain damage.
- Levamisole can thin out the prefrontal cortex and affect cognitive skills.
- Government health programs should encourage testing of cocaine for purity.
Civil discourse has fallen to an all time low.
The question that the American populace needs to ask itself now is: how do we fix it?
Discursive fundamentals need to be taught to preserve free expression
In their findings the authors state:
upholding First Amendment ideals.
Talking politics at Thanksgiving dinner
- Progressive Activists: younger, highly engaged, secular, cosmopolitan, angry.
- Traditional Liberals: older, retired, open to compromise, rational, cautious.
- Passive Liberals: unhappy, insecure, distrustful, disillusioned.
- Politically Disengaged: young, low income, distrustful, detached, patriotic, conspiratorial
- Moderates: engaged, civic-minded, middle-of-the-road, pessimistic, Protestant.
- Traditional Conservatives: religious, middle class, patriotic, moralistic.
- Devoted Conservatives: white, retired, highly engaged, uncompromising,
It's interesting to note the authors found that:
"Tribe membership shows strong reliability in predicting views across different political topics."
Here are some statistics on differing viewpoints according to political party:
- 51% of staunch liberals say it's "morally acceptable" to punch Nazis.
- 53% of Republicans favor stripping U.S. citizenship from people who burn the American flag.
- 65% of Republicans say NFL players should be fired if they refuse to stand for the anthem.
- 58% of Democrats say employers should punish employees for offensive Facebook posts.
- 47% of Republicans favor bans on building new mosques.
Here are some guidelines for civic discourse that might come in handy:
- Practice inclusion and listen to who you're speaking to.
Civic discourse in the divisive age
dangerously tribal, fueled by a culture of outrage and taking offense. For the combatants,
the other side can no longer be tolerated, and no price is too high to defeat them.
These tensions are poisoning personal relationships, consuming our politics and
putting our democracy in peril.
Once a country has become tribalized, debates about contested issues from
immigration and trade to economic management, climate change and national security,
become shaped by larger tribal identities. Policy debate gives way to tribal conflicts.
Polarization and tribalism are self-reinforcing and will likely continue to accelerate.
The work of rebuilding our fragmented society needs to start now. It extends from
re-connecting people across the lines of division in local communities all the way to
building a renewed sense of national identity: a bigger story of us."
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