ironiya

This career-oriented blog—published biweekly on Wednesdays—looks at the positive and sometimes ironic sides of a kaleidoscopic range of workplace and life issues, from education and employment to discipline and discord.

November 7, 2019

Twenty-three thousand overachieving students apply to gain admittance to Harvard’s freshman class of less than 2100. Three hundred highly qualified people apply for one job at IBM. The success rate for ambitious musicians to play at either Carnegie Hall or Madosn Square Garden is far smaller. The list will always continue...

So many exceptionally qualified people find themselves in places not quite what their talents would otherwise...

October 24, 2019

Do you have a clear plan about where you’re going? 

Picture your ideal job; what does it look like? What is its focus, and with whom would you be working and interacting? Is your productivity and efficiency all it could be? If not, what must be done to ensure those twin aspects of valued employment?

These questions hold true whether you’re an undergraduate or graduate student, new to the job market or otherwise ensconced in a less-th...

October 10, 2019

In just a few months, autumn leaves and we brace for winter. How many of us remember the start of 2019 as though it took place a mere few months ago? Then multiply that feeling by 10 and a decade has passed. How easy it is to forego an extra hour for Law & Order, a further hour for Judge Judy, confident that the time could well be made up tomorrow, next month, next year…. Fill in the blanks for any activity that stretches a bit too...

September 25, 2019

Throughout the past decade, Julius Baer was among the Swiss banks to settle with the United States justice and tax authorities over an investigation that revealed its active participation in a scheme with wealthy American clients to avoid taxes. Were this an isolated incident, one could chalk it up to greedy bankers and self-centered multimillionaires—the former for the hefty fees, the latter for the hefty fortunes. Yet this i...

September 12, 2019

The human drive to become physically sated expresses itself in many ways. In the realm of food, to take just one of a hundred examples, the richer the better. Yet is all that saturated fat in beef, chicken and fish preparations really necessary?

What purpose does our society’s overwhelming tendency toward sugar serve? Balance the passing moments of pleasure against diabetes, weight gain, inflammation, high cholesterol and blood pres...

August 28, 2019

What is it about the prevalent tendency toward one-upmanship? Why is it that pride is not always limited to the more interior pursuits of quiet knowledge, of meaningful achievement, of security borne of discipline and hard work? Must everything be on display?

Credit-card companies, for example, began peddling Gold cards in the 1980s as a way to distinguish the truly elite from the merely creditworthy. The 1990s brought Platinum card...

August 15, 2019

When driving, who wouldn't choose the paved roads, the smooth transitions, the shock absorbers' gratitude?

The initial response may well be likewise when confronted with personal and career decisions, yet is the flat ride always the best?

Instinct may have us attempt to avoid struggling, yet perseverance and character are built upon that self-same struggle and arguably impossible to achieve without it. The twin peaks of satisfaction...

July 31, 2019

Why is it that some people are perpetually out and about, causing things to happen, initiating contacts and contracts, and for whom a day without learning or achievement is a wasted day?

On the other side of the door, why is it that some people go through life passively, causing few things to happen, showing little initiative, and for whom a day without television or lots of time at the kitchen table is a wasted day?

There’s a reason...

July 18, 2019

Self-esteem in the workplace can be both healthy and productive, as it points to self-respect and confidence in one’s abilities. Lawyers, for example, having gone to four years of college and three of law school before passing a rigorous bar exam, not only have reason to be confident but in fact must be, given the competition and stakes involved. Doctors require years more training with life and its quality at stake. Executive assi...

July 3, 2019

Starbucks expresses our ounce options in the faux elegance of Short, Tall, Grande, Venti Hot,

Venti Cold and Trenta Cold cup sizes. Wawa is much more utilitarian if no less direct with 12, 16, 20, 24.

How easy it is to lean on this support system when confronted with an endless day of meetings, intense job responsibilities, family obligations and the day-to-day activities that keep our stomachs and bank accounts full.

The support of c...

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© 2019 Robert Rimm

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