As we reach the end of 2018, we want to wish you a very happy holiday season. Whether you celebrate religious holidays or treat this season as a secular observance, we hope you will have the opportunity to celebrate with friends and family.
We want to thank everyone who reads our blog. With over a week left, our number of hits on the blog site this year have already increased by 37% over 2017, with similar increases in our readership on Facebook and LinkedIn. Our total number of visitors increased by 28% this year, meaning our readers are also looking at more articles each visit.
We appreciate our readers from around the world and hope you have found something that is useful and makes you think. We appreciate your comments and the beliefs we share in the importance of employees and managers working together. When they do, everyone can accomplish more.
A couple of the organizations with which we are presently working show the benefits of labor-management cooperation and worker involvement. The first is from an organization that has a long history of very contentious relationships between employees and managers. This group, however, has demonstrated a willingness to change this pattern of behaviors. They are working together well, openly discussing problems and developing solutions all parties can support, and dealing together with strategies for some significant changes that are upcoming. There are difficult decisions to be made, but they have shown the ability to get through them together.
The other is an employer that also has a history of difficult relationships. It has been difficult to bring them together, but it is starting to happen. Both sides are working better together and communicating more honestly in our meetings. Bringing the parties throughout this organization together will require a real climate change. This is never easy, and will require time, effort, and commitment. We are looking forward to helping them begin and working with them throughout the process.
This time of year we like to focus on the promises of peace and goodwill, but this year it is difficult to do so. As I write this, the U.S. Federal Government is in shutdown in a dispute over a border wall between the U.S. and Mexico. As a result, over 800,000 federal workers will work without pay or will be laid off entirely. Ironically, about 54,000 of them will be the people that defend our border (Source). These workers have become pawns in a game built around the desire to win at all costs. I don’t want to engage in a political debate over building the wall, but once again workers and their families are the ones being hurt, especially during the holiday season.
The other day, I took a walk along a riverbank and saw the mast of a boat sticking out of the water. A recent storm washed the boat away from its moorings, out into the river, and capsized it. The only thing visible was around 8 feet of mast.
It made me think about the tip of the mast, the top 1% of the boat. It may have felt the storm had been weathered, and everything was fine. Eventually, it may begin to wonder why is can’t go anywhere and why the motors are not working. As things seem to happen now, it will probably put inappropriate blame on something or someone who was ultimately not responsible. Eventually, it may realize it cannot go anywhere without the work of the entire system. Or, it may just continue to blame anything it does not like.
Meredith and I want to thank you for taking the time to read the blog, and hope you will continue to do so. Our best wishes for a fantastic holiday, a great finish to 2018, and even better things next year.