By Mike Prokopeak
Jan. 6, 2017
By Mike Prokopeak
It’s hard to believe but 2017 marks Workforce’s 95th year.
That’s right. HR leaders like you have been flipping through this magazine since the days of President Warren G. Harding and the Teapot Dome scandal.
You don’t make it that long without a dedicated group of readers. So thank you for continuing to take the journey with us. We look forward to continuing to serve you in 2017.
You also don’t make it that long without some changes along the way. What started as The Journal of Personnel Research became Workforce in 1997. While we’re not changing the name again, we are changing the game.
We’re taking the print edition bimonthly so we can invest more in daily coverage online and via video. Go to Workforce.com daily to keep up with the latest news along with analysis from experts.
Check out Five Minutes of Management, a weekly video wrap of HR-related news, as well By the Numbers, an interactive look at the statistics behind the workplace stories of the day.
The year and the media may be new, but our mission, as always, remains the same.
ON THE SCENE WITH WORKFORCE
The workplace wellness community lost one of their earliest pioneers late last year.
Bill Baun, wellness officer at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, died Nov. 5. He was 67.
Mr. Baun worked in corporate wellness since its earliest days, and despite his own battle as a stage 4 prostate cancer survivor, his input shaped the wellness field that exists today.
In a profile of Mr. Baun published in the January 2016 edition of Workforce, he explained that it is ineffective to teach people wellness skills without first giving them an environment that promotes wellness. One of the first changes he made at MD Anderson was simple: remove junk food from the cafeteria and vending machines and provide easy walking paths for employees.
Said Mr. Baun about the value of wellness at work: “This is a relationship game. This is all about building relationships with people so that they trust you and give you the opportunity to show you what we can do. I think sometimes wellness programs want things done fast, and that’s not how this works. It needs to be one small step at a time and one relationship at a time.”
To read the full interview, go to: workforce.com/MrBillBaun
Reader Michael Lujan reacted to Associate Editor Bravetta Hassell’s online post titled, “More Diverse Workplaces Require a Broader View of Benefits”:
Kudos to employers and innovators for rethinking or reimagining what benefits mean to the changing workforce and how to meet them, even outside of the traditional products and services. More companies are made up of mostly millennials who challenge the stale and limited ideas offered for decades by many well-intended traditional benefits managers. Add to this the many new tech tools to help add cost transparency and decision-making support for open enrollment. Nice job, Bravetta.
Online reader Ad commented on blogger Jon Hyman’s post titled, “Just Because It Might Be Legal Doesn’t Make It Right”:
I totally agree with Jon’s moral stance that bigotry should not be tolerated. However, the position that the manager “would have been terminated upon an investigation reasonably confirming the misconduct” could put the organization at risk of been sued by the said manager. Just as in the example case the requirement for direct evidence remains. Furthermore, there are a number of alternate strategies that organizations can adopt that could address or minimize this type of behavior arising.
Finally, online reader Fatima Hassan joined the discussion with the many comments on Jon Hyman’s post, “Why #BlackLivesMatter Should Matter to Employers”:
What makes you so sure your race was a factor in his decision? You didn’t include it in your story, as if the connection was obvious. Your firing may have been unjustified, malicious, unfair, etc. and still had nothing to do with your race. White employees are fired by white employers because they’re “not a good fit” every day. Unless you provide more evidence that your firing was racially motivated, there’s really no reason to believe it was. If you don’t have any evidence, then you’re just assuming the cause was racism. It’s as though firing you was racism ipso facto.
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