Quick Quips on 2016



Another year about to end and of course one last post before the new year.

My personal accomplishments were a short list this year. Not much to brag about or even be proud of. However, there were a few bright spots;

I did ramp up my writing and have appeared on the ADP SPARK website, HR.com, and most recently Fistful of Talent (FOT). For the foreseeable future I will be a fixture on FOT as it fits my personality the best. I get to write about meaningful topics to the HR community in a free flow style. In short I get to be ME, the HR guy with just a pinch of ATTITUDE and the chops to back it up. I also think it is still one of the few relevant and well written HR/Talent sites on the web.

I also went and acquired my Life/Accident/Health insurance broker’s license for New York State. Not so much to sell, but as I consult I can turn business over to a couple of colleagues and still share in the commissions. Let me tell you it’s not as easy as you think to take the 40-hr. course and pass the state exam especially on your own (not company sponsored). I did it end to end in less than a month and it was a good personal test of fortitude.

I did a few speaking gigs, Disrupt HR in NYC to start the year, 2 private company conferences, SHRM National and the New York State conference. I also did some local stuff to keep sharp. I am working on some very cool stuff for 2017, maybe my best to date, so you will be hearing more about this in coming weeks.

I continue to teach grad school at Adelphi and will even try my hand at undergrad for the first time in 17 yrs. in the spring. I enjoy the classroom, maybe more than the office….so this is a great part-time activity for me.

There are things that didn’t go so well and  I need to work on too;

I have tried my hand at “selling” with less than stellar results. By nature, I am more of a consultant and business insider. I do strategy and implementation well, but I am still learning the art of the deal. I also have a fairly big network  and am comfortable networking, but converting is harder then  it looks.  A work in progress. I just need to fine tune a few things for 2017.

My volunteering has dwindled as I have reduced my board activity to Molloy college and doing some editorial work for World at Work on their publications. I have been doing editorial review for almost a decade and a half and still enjoy it. I am looking to find the right balance of giving back and not being taken advantage of. Molloy college and World at Work continue to fit. I do want to find one  more  outlet to give back without being a major time suck.

Recently I offered to serve with my local SHRM chapter and met stiff resistance. I thought this would be my next give back opportunity on a local level after having done some volunteer work on the national level for SHRM over the past few yrs. Unfortunately, I was upsetting the apple cart of the entrenched folks who are working hard but not necessarily moving the local chapter forward. Their loss not mine. I will be back in 2017 to talk more about that in a full post or maybe even two.

My golf game has improved almost 10 strokes a round and I am now shooting rounds as low as the mid 90’s regularly (yes that’s 18 holes, not 9). I still have a long way to go and that will be a challenge for the year to come.

I also lost a few of the many pounds I have added over the past decade. It is definitely time to get “ME” in order. This is never an easy battle, but it is now a necessary one that I can’t ignore.

So, as you can see it was not that memorable of a year. That’s the funny thing. Most of us reminisce  in December looking for outstanding accomplishments and memorable moments. In past years, especially in the 2003 – 2013 time frame I had some great years and could have filled a chapter instead of a half page. This past year was a little like a pro athlete entering the twilight of their career that gets injured and sits out the season. Now I know what folks like Kobe Bryant, Peyton Manning and Derrick Jeter felt like after major injuries as they neared their final swan songs. Ok, I know I compared myself to the best in their respective sports ( I have an ego, but am also confident about who I am and what I have done in my career) and that’s how I feel.

The interesting thing is with less accomplishments, I now appreciate little things a lot more. Things that would have been after thoughts or no thought at all only a couple of years ago, are so much sweeter now. A lesson in life. We don’t always appreciate what we have or what we accomplish as much as we should.

Well this winter is officially training camp for 2017 and I expect to make a big comeback. There is still plenty of tread on these tires and I intend to use them at full speed!

I won’t make any of the cliché resolutions for the new year. Instead, I will just say that training camp is about to begin. Plenty of hard work and sweat, figuratively and literally. As the saying goes, this is not my first rodeo. It also will not be my last. And I expect to make the team and not get cut!

For those celebrating this weekend, Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukah!!!

I will be back at the end of next week on the Fistful of Talent site to wish you all a happy new year and quip a little more on what HR can do to make 2017 a great year….


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