Sunday, January 26, 2014

Falling Off the Corporate Ladder

I have climbed and fallen off the corporate ladder many times in my life.  I know I'm to blame for the most part of it.  It's funny that as a forty year old I can see that now but, as a twenty something, I was blind.  However, I am still the same person and I know I can not take all the blame.   My naivety led to my greatest falls but my sound fundamentals allowed me to climb again and again and ........

I have always seen things differently than most.  Upon college graduation and my introduction into the working world, I assumed that management and higher-ups would value all opinions.  HA!  Joke was on me.  Time after time, I have spoken or emailed an opinion up the ladder.  Usually it was an idea on how to do things better or what wasn't working in the system.  I think once I hit 28, I realized that my opinions didn't matter.  I heard once that "Don't rock the boat, especially when you're standing in it."  I should've listened.  The truth is that when you're climbing the corporate ladder you have to be very careful. There's only one ladder and the person above you is liable to shit on you at any time.  I have had two managers "steal" my ideas.  One gave me some credit for it. The other... no way.  The other once told me that one idea wasn't possible but less than a month later somehow came out as one of her plans of action.  A second idea she "would consider".  Next day: BOOM!  There it was in her "observation that we need to take the direction of......"  After a thorough scrubbing and being excrement clean, I fired off an email calling her out and off the ladder and into corporate purgatory I went.

In my business career, I have had the knack for two things: 1) Being  hired into a "new" position or area 2) Being promoted too quickly.  There are problems with both of these.  "New" positions have vague descriptions of what, where and how things should be done but have insisted outcomes.  Being promoted when you are not ready only leads to frustrations, bad decisions and ultimately back at the bottom of another company.  I admit some ladders I jumped from.  I wasn't the captain and it wasn't my ship or maybe I felt I just didn't fit.  In most cases, my starting over was because I acted impulsively.

In recent years, I have been able to keep my tongue in check and emails in the draft file.  And thus, up the ladder I climb once again.  Even though falling off the ladder hurts, I have learned from those challenges.  I feel now I have certain savoir-faire.  I still have my creativity and ideas but recognize that this isn't Shane's world and my way (even though it's probably better) ain't the only way.  I, also, know that there are many agendas out there and Shane's way usually intrudes into those agendas which leads back to falling (most likely by a boot) off the ladder back to the first rung.

There is one way to keep from falling.  No matter what area you are in, you must have a mentor.  I can't tell you how you find your mentor but you will know when you find him/her.  I have been lucky to have had two great managers and had/have flourished under them.  As I continue to climb, I can look to their example and know that I'm doing the right thing.

PS:  I had written a poem on the subject but it has disappeared from my mind and from the computer over the course of time.  But I have written others close to the subject:

Blackened midnights gone
Darkend Clouds lifted
Blinding Fog Cleared
From this nightmare
I step into the sun

"Another Day"
Again the sun sets
Another day gone and yet
In the morning it will rise
And bring with it a new surprise

"Looking Up"
From the Depths of Hell I pull
I can feel the cool
I stumble and slip

I grab and hold
Looking Up

With so far to go

Saturday, January 18, 2014

The Great Girl Scout Cookie Mass Debate

It all started a few weeks ago on Facebook.  For the most part, I don't give Facebook "debates" much attention.  However, this one hit a little close to home.  Upon Gretchen's request, I held my tongue.  It is always a good thing to stop and think, as I have jumped too quickly, pulling my tongue and firing way to fast many times before. This usually ends in not so happy endings.  So, even before I typed this, I ask her if it was okay.  And with a title like this one, who could say "No."  With Her blessing, I give you the: The Great Girl Scout Cookie Mass Debate.

The debate stems from an article that I have seen posted to Facebook on numerous occasions.  The title of the article was Girl Scouts Join Planned Parenthood at Huge Pro-Abortion Conference.   And if you're saying "What?", you having the same reaction that I did.  Something doesn't sound right.  Now if people do not read the article and just go by the title then I can see why they would be mad.

Now from the comments from these post I can only assume that people did not read the article.  The comments range from things like "I'm shocked" to "I won't be buying any cookies."  The major question I have is if the people posting the article have read it.  If not, then the irresponsibility lies with them.  I HAVE read it.   I also read other articles from this sight.  Have they?

When I read the article it reminded me of a right winged conspiracy theorist as does rest of the sight.  That's my opinion.  The sight, I had never heard of.  The point of the website is clear.  And while I'm anti-abortion, I can't agree with an article that plays "connect the dots" and then comes up with conclusions that attempts to destroy the image of an organization like the Girl Scouts.  My 7 year old daughter is in her first year of Girl Scouts and her first year of selling cookies.  How am I to explain that people aren't going to buy cookies because a 17 year old former Girl Scout wrote an article?  Yes, I said 17.  Want to change your opinion of the article now?  Not that 17 year old can't be a great investigative reporter but I don't think this was the case.   Looks more like a school paper gone viral with the far right pushing it along.  Does she have something else against the Girl Scouts that she's not sharing?  I don't know.  Maybe.

Being in partnership with Planned Parenthood is not against the law, by the way.  If you want to boycott Girl Scout Cookies go ahead.  But don't be hypocritical.  You will need to go to your kitchens, your pantries, your wallets, you closets, your garages, etc., etc., etc. and dispose of the products from the companies that also have alleged ties to Planned Parenthood at the bottom of this post.

Just something to think about the next your doorbell rings. 

Now if you really believe in a cause, then get involved. Write your elected leaders, hold demonstrations, start a website( use facts though), just don't be lazy and post or re-post anonymous articles from websites you've never heard of.  While your intentions may be good the means of which you're doing them are not.

PS.  Feel free to post or re-post this blog

The List

3Com Corporation
Abbott Laboratories Fund
Adaptec, Inc.
Adobe Systems, Inc.
Allstate Giving Campaign
ALZA Corporation
AMD – Advanced Micro Devices
America’s Charities – Employee Giving Program
American Express corporation
Ameriprise Financial
Amgen Corporation
Amica Companies
Aon Corporation
Autodesk, Inc.
Avon Products
Bakar Foundation, Gerson
Bank of America
Barclays Global Investors
Baxter International
BCC Software
Becton Dickinson & Company
Birkenstock Footprint Sandals, Inc.
Black & Decker
Boing – The Employee Community Fund
Bristol-Myers Squibb
Brobeck Charitable Foundation
Cadence Design Systems, Inc.
California Healthcare
California Wellness
Capital Group Companies
Central New York Community Foundation
Charles Schwab
Chase Manhattan
Chubb & Son, Inc.
Cisco Systems
Click Commerce
CMP Media, Inc.
Compton Foundation, Inc.
Computer Associates Int’l, Inc.
Cooper Industries
Cowell Foundation, S.H.
Del Monte Foods
Electronic Arts, Inc.
Equity Foundation
Exxon Mobil
Fannie Mae
Federated Department Stores, Inc.
Fidelity Investments
First Data Corporation
Flora Family Foundation
Ford Motor Company
Freddie Mac
Fremont Group
Gallagher Foundation, Arthur J.
Genentech, Inc.
General Electric
General Physics Corporation
General Re Corporation
Georgia-Pacific Corporation
Grainger, Inc.
Haas Fund, Evelyn and Walter Jr.
Hanson, Bridgett, Marcus, Vlahos and Rudy LLP
Harcourt, Inc.
Hewlett Foundation, William & Flora
Hewlett Packard Company Foundation
Household International
Hunter Davidson Giving Campaign
Idea Connections
IKON Office Solutions
Illinois Tool Works
Infocom Group
International Data Group, Inc.
Irvine Foundation, James
James River Corporation
Joseph Seagram and Sons
Johnson and Johnson
JP Morgan
Kaiser Family Foundation, Henry J.
KPMG Involve Community Campaign
Kraft Foods Matching Gift Program
Lam Research Corporation
Leo Burnett Company
Levi Strauss
Liberty Mutual
Macworld Communications, Inc.
Macy’s West Gift Campaign
Mastercard International
Maxwell PR, LLC
Meyer Memorial Trust
McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
Merck Company
Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc.
Microsoft Corporation
Monsanto Fund
Monsoon, Inc.
Moore Foundation, Gordon & Betty
Morgan Chase
Morgan Stanley
Morrison & Foerster
National Grid
National Semiconductor Corp.
Network Associates
Network for Good
Nike Employee Matching Gift
Northern Trust Company
ODS HealthPlans
Olin Corporation
Oracle Corporation
Oregon Health and Sciences – University Employee Campaign
Packard Foundation, David and Lucille
PCW Communications, Inc.
Peninsula Community Foundation
Phillip Morris
Pitney Bowes
Providian Financial
Prudential Insurance
Quaker Oats
Qualcomm Inc.
RBC Dain Rauscher
Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon
Rejuvenation, Inc.
Rockefeller Foundation
Rosendin Electric, Inc.
Safeco Corporation
San Jose Mercury News
Schwab Corporation
Shudder Kemper Investments, Inc.
Standard Insurance – The Matching Gift Center
Stuart Foundation
Sun Microsystems
T. Rowe Price
Tandy Corporation
TAP Pharmaceutical Products
Tenet Healthcare
The Tides Corporation
United Airlines Employee Campaign
Umpqua Bank – Giving Campaign
U.S. Bancorp
UBS Realty Investments LLC
Vanguard Group
Vernier Software, LLC
Washington Mutual
Washington Post Company
Washington State Combined Fund Drive
Wells Fargo Community Support Campaign
West Group
White & Case
Working Assets Funding Service

Sunday, January 12, 2014

My Brain Goes Live

I'm giving web casting another try.  I had big plans for inshanesbrain pod cast in the past but I quickly learned that being the researcher, producer, writer, star and editor was a second full-time job.  I did exactly two shows.  One solo and one with Gretchen.  It was fun but very time consuming.  Now I'm giving it another go.  I'm teaming up with the crew from Big Kev's View and hopefully a few others.  I have teamed up with Big Kev's View before and I sat in on one of their shows back in July.  This new format will allow viewers to watch live on YouTube via google+.  We did a test run on Friday night and it was a bit crude and there are some kinks to be worked out but overall I'm excited about the project. With multiple contributors, the stress level of preforming goes away and we can all share in the aforementioned responsibilities.  If you want join in the fun get your google+ account together, follow Big Kev's View and take a ride on the Short Bus. (that's the new show's name)  And as before, I continue too keep this blog alive as well.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

The End of Christmas

Christmas ended today.  I know for most it ended 12 days ago.  It should upset Christians that the Christmas season has been replaced by the Holiday shopping season.  Yes, most people think the Christmas season starts November 1st when Halloween disappears from the store shelves and Christmas expands from one aisle that appeared 3 weeks earlier to forty-five aisles. This is followed by fifty-five days of Facebook getting slammed with pictures of trees, crying kids and creepy elves; Black-eye Friday and endless sales of items no one should buy or own.  Finally, the 1st Day of Christmas arrives and what should be a day of celebration for the birth of the Savior, isn't.  Instead, trees and decorations come down; the radio, that was filled with "Christmas" music, goes back to regular programming; and churches that should be filled with joyous believers are closed so that members can stay home and over-eat, un-wrap unwanted gifts and talk about un-attending family members.  This should be the day the celebrating begins, followed by 11 more days of joy.  Today (January 5), should be the last day of the Christmas season but I'm beginning to think that the Christmas season no longer exist.