Does your workplace foster engagement, or the opposite? (employee motivation morale leadership dave-wheeler harvard business review

Does your workplace foster engagement, or the opposite? (illustration by Dave Wheeler, Harvard Business Review)

Easy lifting is my Friday mantra, and I wish the same for you. For an enjoyable read, I suggest Ashley Kasarjian’s blog post that could transform your workplace.

Ashley is an employment & labor attorney at Snell & Wilmer—and the chair of the Arizona Attorney Editorial Board. So she has great experience about what works and what doesn’t in regard to motivation and morale.

And you’ve got to be wowed by the way she pairs her advice with song choices. I love the smell of leadership in the morning!

Ashley Kasarjian

Ashley Kasarjian

(You might recall I wrote before about Ashley’s being honored with a 2015 Athena Award—so well deserved!)

After reading Ashley’s insightful post, please send me a note to say which morale-boosting tip is your favorite.

I admit it’s hard to separate the wisdom from whether you love the song that inspired it. So my favorite—Michael Jackson and making a change—might be musically driven as much as workplace driven!

Meantime, if you needed more evidence that de-suckifying your workplace may help your staffers’ morale, I have one word for you: Harvard!

That’s right, who isn’t impressed by words of wisdom that emanate from that Ivy League school on the Charles River? So head over to read a great piece on employee motivation and your company’s culture in the Harvard Business Review.

Here is one graphic from that article. I suspect we all have aspects we could improve in our organizations. Let me know what you’re doing in your law office. Write to me at arizona.attorney@azbar.org.

Company process and employee motivation (frightening graphic by Harvard Business Review)

Company process and employee motivation (frightening graphic by Harvard Business Review)

Have a terrific—and lyrical—weekend.

silos how I love them

Silos: How I love them (let me count the ways).

I’ve written previously about our unique initiative called “CLE Snippets,” through which we create and release short videos that are Q&As between a timely author from Arizona Attorney Magazine and their thankful editor, me.

In the current magazine, I wax poetic about how much I appreciate those authors for sharing their time and talents. And I appreciate my Member Services Department colleague Jen Sonier for doing the same, as she brings her substantial videography talents to the endeavor.

Since the issue and my column came out, multiple readers told me they enjoyed seeing our tradition of taking a photo of me and the author. But they wondered about my column’s opening lines:

“O, how I love my silos.”

“I understand that’s not a popular concept. Just saying it out loud might terminate my subscription to Harvard Business Review.”

“But like a lot of people who are equal parts busy and highly committed to quality control, I find broad-scale collaboration … challenging, shall we say. Let me be, live and let live, catch you on the flip side. And don’t touch my cheese.”

“I am aware that different times require different strategies. And so I’ve aimed to take my best cooperative qualities, so visible and valuable in social media, into the realm of real. actual. people.”

“One result of that in the past year has been the launch of CLE Snippets, a pioneering collaboration between two State Bar departments. It brings together those of us who are relatively talented at content creation with those who are expert in online learning. The results? Valuable content for members and increased visibility for magazine articles and our talented authors.”

Specifically, readers wondered how anyone could defend silos. After all, silos have become the bugaboo of the modern office, where collaboration, cooperation, and deference to the short-walled cubicle are supposed to cure all our ills.

Briefly, my experience has been: For some, the demolition of silos has come from a genuine place of organizational improvement. But that’s not the whole picture. So if someone insists you should break down your silos, hold onto to your wallet/budget/resources. For you and your department/magazine/staff may have something the other person wants. For those requestors, silos are a one-way street (just to mangle and confuse some metaphors).

Trust but verify.

In any case, the image at the top of this post is one I created and have posted in my own workspace (talented, right?). It’s a reminder that I may be silly to love silos, but that there’s often something stinky lurking behind requests to tear them down.

And don’t touch my cheese.

What made me rethink my silo-love? Our authors. o'course.

What made me rethink my silo-love? Our authors. o’course.