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.

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...

June 20, 2019

Cutthroat. Merciless. Fierce.

Cold-hearted. Brutal. Harsh.

Corporate executives operating with less ruth than an oceanic whitetip shark.

These descriptions may well still be the norm for the Fortune 500s and Russell 2000s out there, yet more and more corporations are demonstrating a rising interest in the opposite approach—offering generous and extended paid parental leave (Netflix), providing free college education (Starbucks), build...

June 5, 2019

How many times have you found yourself in that crushing space, faced with the dilemma of making a choice between two much-less-than-ideal alternatives? Having to choose the lesser of two evils speaks for itself, yet difficult choices are often the most helpful in the long run. Why, then, are they generally looked upon as eagerly as invasive surgery?

But our days are filled with just such decisions. Here is one area of life for which...

May 23, 2019

Perspective is among the defining aspects of our days and nights, offering myriad ways to endure what cannot be changed. Why is it, then, that some people consistently face the clock with equanimity and acceptance, while others fight reality with the relentlessness of a watch’s hyperactive second hand?

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Two people find themselves in stultifying rush-hour traffic, each needing to attend a key meeting, yet it looks like they’ll be la...

May 9, 2019

Few of us wake up in the morning looking forward to a day of turnoffs.

Yet such days can be filled with the kind of productivity and focus simply not possible without them. Researchers at the University of California, Irvine, have demonstrated concrete findings that reveal how removing the nonstop distractions of email during the workday not only reduces stress but enables tangibly sharper focus. “We found that when you remove email...

April 25, 2019

The 8:30 a.m. conference at your downtown office will emphatically not wait for being held up in rush-hour traffic, for getting the kids ready for school in time for the bus, for finishing your preparation for the pending presentation, for putting gas in the car, for stopping at the ATM, for… for… for. If only you could have something to hold you up amidst the stress and lack of sleep that seem to purposely invade each week. Add wa...

April 10, 2019

Arguments. Disagreements. Disputes.

Or perhaps with a bit of floor polish: contretemps.

They have happened every day among friends, lovers, relatives, spouses and business associates since the beginning of time. Must this state of affairs continue unabridged, accepted as the cost of getting up in the morning, as inevitable as stale bread? Or can people learn to read problems in light of the bigger picture by considering the brevity o...

March 27, 2019

The refrigerator and stove. ATM and auto-pay. Self-service checkout.

The computer, smartphone and iEverything. Facebook and Twitter. Google and untold others.

Drive-up, drive-through, drop-off everything.

These and all the other accoutrements of daily living can be accomplished with little or no human interaction. But what do our hours mean without meaningful or even passing companionship? In the drive for technological supremacy and...

March 13, 2019

In Measure for Measure, Shakespeare makes clear that "our doubts are traitors, and make us

lose the good we oft might win by fearing to attempt." Over four hundred years later, these measured words are as relevant as ever. Must indecision continue to rule the centuries like some perverse King Henry loop?

After President Trump fired FBI Director James Comey in a way that was initially presented as decisive action, its gestation and su...

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© 2019 Robert Rimm

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