By The Numbers

journals Jul 31, 2020

The first half of 2020 was one for the record books. We saw an entire decade’s worth of job gains vanish in two months. Then, about a third of the 21 million lost jobs came back. 

More than 1 in 7 U.S. workers lost their jobs during the economic shutdowns. Even though we’ve added jobs at a record pace in May and June, the unemployment rate remains at its highest level since the Great Depression.

In the U.S., the hardest-hit sectors were non-hospital health-care jobs, hotels and restaurants. These types of service industry jobs account for 70% of total U.S. employment. This covers the majority of my members here, who employ audiology and medical assistants.

I've long taught that you must have your ear to the ground in your individual market. Just like I watch the tourists arriving to Southern Utah from my home and pay close attention to the local news where thousands of local workers and families in my practice work, you must do the same.

My advice to clients in Las...

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Give Yourself Space.

journals Jun 30, 2020

Today, when someone in Beijing gets the coronavirus again, the entire world knows about it within hours. 52 years after the Hong Kong flu, we still don’t know how many people actually died from it. The WHO says between 1 and 4 million people. That’s a pretty big range.

For the dad reading this on Father’s Day, imagine if someone asked you how many kids you have and you said, “somewhere between 1 and 4.” And yet, somehow we all accepted this final death toll from the Hong Kong flu back in 1968-1969 as somewhere between 1 and 4 million.

Why?

Because we weren’t obsessed with instant, always-on communication streaming to us 24/7 through our televisions and smartphones. In the 1950s our average radio use dropped to less than two hours per day while TV viewing climbed to 1 hour and 23 minutes. Back then, we consumed a limited amount of media and shrugged our shoulders at a wildly-inaccurate range of how many people died from the Hong Kong flu and we...

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On Grit.

journals May 28, 2020

Angela Duckworth is the Christopher H. Browne Distinguished Professor of Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania, where she studies grit and self-control. In her book, Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance, Professor Duckworth defines grit as “perseverance and passion for long-term goals.”

“In their work with The United States Military Academy at West Point, Duckworth and her team of psychologists have worked for years to understand who will make it through the rigorous training and who will drop out. For weeks on end, new recruits are asked, on an hourly basis, to do things they can’t yet do. Most cadets are tired, lonely, frustrated and ready to quit.

What’s interesting is that those who rise to the occasion and make it through the intense training are not the ones who have the most talent. Many drop out who have all the ability in the world. When presented with challenges that exceeded their current skills, what they lacked was...

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Circumstance vs. Character

journals Mar 30, 2020

In coaching, consulting and reviewing the reports from our on-site trainers, human capital challenges are at the top of the list of items we’re hired to fix. As I’ve done with most systems, challenges and opportunities in business, I help my clients and trainers develop and deploy “litmus tests,” or quick “yes/no” tools to help guide next steps.

Here’s one you might put to good use when your next employee challenge or frustration arrives. Ask if this is an issue of character or circumstance. 

Our data indicate: underperforming employees are rarely an issue of character. These situations are almost always an issue of circumstance.

For example, we failed to place the employee in the proper role. The training program was inadequate. Oversight and motivational systems were not being deployed consistently. Communication was unclear. We did not support the employee’s desire to learn new things, master his own environment and...

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