You’re doing it wrong—the proper way to approach creative thinking

The Oswald Letter - Mon, 04/25/2016 - 11:51

by Dan Oswald Fifty years ago, NASA asked Dr. George Land to develop a creativity assessment aimed at helping the space agency identify and hire the most creative engineers and scientists. The test proved successful for NASA, and in 1968, Land decided to use his assessment to test the creativity of 1,600 4- and 5-year-olds who were enrolled in a...

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Hunting of the ‘Like’: Beware the concerted activity Boojums

Technology for HR - Thu, 04/21/2016 - 06:04

by Mark C. Dean For, although common Snarks do no manner of harm, Yet, I feel it my duty to say, Some are Boojums. —Lewis Carroll “The Hunting of the Snark” In Lewis Carroll’s 1876 poem, a hunting party pursuing the harmless Snark is warned along the way that some Snarks are actually highly dangerous Boojums. According to the...

Categories: Blogs, Technology for HR

‘I was not told there would be math’

EntertainHR - Wed, 04/20/2016 - 09:19

Saturday Night Live has made invaluable contributions to American humor, but the best may be the show’s political parodies. Chevy Chase was famous for mocking Gerald Ford’s clumsy reputation (undeserved, for sure, considering Ford was a standout athlete). Dana Carvey practically built a career mimicking George H.W. Bush, and Phil...

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Danger, Will Robinson! Danger!

Technology for HR - Tue, 04/19/2016 - 09:09

by Mark I. Schickman America’s biggest employment law mill, Littler Mendelson, has spawned a slew of employment concepts, sometimes interesting, sometimes smart. But Littler’s suggestions can sometimes backfire, such as when it recommended the “love contract” as the answer to how employers should deal with romance in the...

Categories: Blogs, Technology for HR

Don’t let your mistakes define who you are

The Oswald Letter - Mon, 04/18/2016 - 10:01

by Dan Oswald A week ago, Jordan Spieth lost the Masters golf tournament in stunning fashion. One headline on ESPN’s website read, “Jordan Spieth’s collapse at the Masters the most shocking in golf history.” That’s saying a lot since the “modern” game of golf originated in 15th century Scotland and it made its Olympic debut in 1900,...

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Switching gears: Shifting to reverse can rev up workplace mentoring

Diversity Insight - Sun, 04/17/2016 - 07:01

Researchers report that the millennial generation now makes up the largest share of the U.S. workforce. To be sure, the baby boomer and Generation X contingents remain strong, but the sheer number of younger workers makes them a force to be reckoned with. Longtime workers may think their young colleagues have a lot to learn, but employers are...

Categories: Blogs

Thin line between political and hate speech: What’s acceptable at work

Diversity Insight - Sun, 04/17/2016 - 07:00

by Holly K. Jones, J.D. Picture it—it’s a Friday afternoon at the end of a very long week, and just as you are about to sneak out early for the weekend, one of your employees walks into your office wearing a camouflage trucker hat emblazoned with the words “Make America Great Again.” Oh perfect, you think to yourself, another...

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How far will DOJ extend ADA’s Title II and Title III requirements?

Diversity Insight - Sun, 04/17/2016 - 06:54

by Monna Lea Bryant, Robert Sniffen, and Jeff Slanker Retailers and businesses may soon need to begin preparing for a new public accommodations issue related to an altogether different kind of access barrier: websites. The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) is developing a plan to amend Titles II and III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)...

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Beyond maternity leave: employers’ duties to returning mothers

Diversity Insight - Sun, 04/17/2016 - 06:53

by Michelle Dougherty With the recent emphasis on the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA)  regarding employers’ affirmative duties to pregnant employees, it is important for employers to remember that they also have obligations when employees return to work after childbirth. Specifically, under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and the...

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Muslim teacher may proceed with national origin harassment claim

Diversity Insight - Sun, 04/17/2016 - 06:49

by Emily Hobbs-Wright A Turkish-born Muslim teacher claimed that her school had a culture of racial and ethnic hostility. The U.S. 10th Circuit Court of Appeals (whose decisions apply to Colorado employers) recently ruled that her complaints of national origin discrimination may move forward. This case offers several lessons on how to handle...

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Commonsense guidelines on social media use

Technology for HR - Wed, 04/13/2016 - 16:28

by Lauren E.M. Russell A lot of our guidance focuses on employees’ use of social media for personal reasons. But what about employees who use social media as a professional tool? That’s a situation that lawyers, and many other professionals, frequently face.  Here in Delaware, we are lucky to have access to a national expert on...

Categories: Blogs, Technology for HR

The Boss, your boss, and LGBT rights

EntertainHR - Tue, 04/12/2016 - 08:56

North Carolina got itself a bit of attention recently when it enacted House Bill 2, which mandates that public restrooms be limited for use based on the individual’s “biological sex.” The effect of this bill was to take away from transgender citizens their ability to choose, based on their individual gender identities, which...

Categories: Blogs

Leadership practices that work regardless of company size

The Oswald Letter - Mon, 04/11/2016 - 09:53

From Dan Oswald: As a way to honor the individuals who have taught me critical life lessons about people and business, I’ve invited several to write guest columns to run in this space over the next few weeks. Today’s voice of experience is provided by a mentor whose business acumen and people skills have guided me for the past quarter century....

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NLRB: Using GPS tracking to investigate misconduct doesn’t violate NLRA

Technology for HR - Thu, 04/07/2016 - 06:47

by Elijah Yip A recent National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) advisory letter provides a bit of good news for employers that want to use modern technology to monitor employees suspected of breaking work rules. On November 2, 2015, the NLRB concluded that Shore Point, an alcoholic beverage distributor, didn’t violate labor laws when it...

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Don’t let fear of failure stop you from taking risks

The Oswald Letter - Mon, 04/04/2016 - 10:10

by Dan Oswald I guess we’re all afraid of something. When we were kids, we might have been afraid of the dark or monsters under the bed. As adults, those fears often seem bigger or more real. We may have a fear of heights, the outdoors, or even failure. The problem is that fear puts limitations on our lives. As children, it might be that we’re...

Categories: Blogs

U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team alleges gender wage discrimination

EntertainHR - Fri, 04/01/2016 - 15:14

Five star players of the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team (Carli Lloyd, Alex Morgan, Megan Rapinoe, Becky Sauerbrunn and Hope Solo) made headlines this week by filing a charge of discrimination with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission alleging gender wage discrimination against the U.S. Soccer Federation.  In their charge, the...

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NLRB finds employer’s prohibition on workplace recordings unlawful

Technology for HR - Thu, 03/31/2016 - 08:30

by Lisa Berg On December 24, 2015, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) held in a 2-1 decision that Whole Foods Market, Inc.’s blanket rules prohibiting employees from recording, without management approval, company meetings, conversations with coworkers, and images violated the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). The Board’s...

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Give your 2016 “to do” list a good spring cleaning

The Oswald Letter - Mon, 03/28/2016 - 09:30

by Dan Oswald Spring has sprung. The grass is green. The flowers are blooming. The trees are in full blossom. It’s that time of year again. Time for spring cleaning. Out with the old and in with the new. At least that’s my wife’s way of thinking. Last weekend, we spent a day cleaning out the garage. At the end, we made one trip to the dump, a...

Categories: Blogs

Perils of ambiguous, inconsistently enforced social media policies

Technology for HR - Thu, 03/24/2016 - 13:08

by Josh Wood and H. Mark Adams A recent decision by the U.S. district court in Shreveport provides a textbook example of the potentially disastrous consequences of having an ambiguous social media policy and then compounding the problem with inconsistent enforcement of the policy. Let’s see where the employer went wrong and what it might...

Categories: Blogs, Technology for HR

Kids’ dwindling writing skills are no reason to LOL

The Oswald Letter - Mon, 03/21/2016 - 10:52

by Dan Oswald Is writing becoming a lost art? The adoption of new technology has forever changed how we communicate with one another—and that includes the written word. I’m certain my kids write more with their thumbs, texting incessantly on their phones, than any other way. And I say that even though two of my kids are in college, where they...

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