Thanksgiving is, hands down, my favorite holiday. I would not say in general that I love to cook, but I do love to cook Thanksgiving foods. If you came to the Employee Relations Roundtable earlier this month, you know that, and you got to learn about my not-so-secret Jiffy Cornbread Casserole recipe! (And it’s not even mine – I learned it from a colleague!)
Food and sharing are just a couple of the aspects of the holiday that make it so wonderful: it’s a time of family, gratitude and reflection. I love it.
Of course, this year it’s all a bit different. In our house, we will be having a feast with four people instead of the usual 30. I will be making tartlets instead of pies, and we will be exchanging greetings over Zoom to stay connected while staying safe.
But the essence of Thanksgiving remains the same, and I want to take a few moments here to say a few heartfelt thanks.
I’m hardly original when I say 2020 has been a strange, challenging and interesting year. How many of us never want to hear “unprecedented” or “the new normal” again? Yet it’s also brought out the best in Employee Relations and in the HR Acuity team. I’m proud of you all. In no particular order, here are some thanks I’d like to give for 2020.
Change. This is year none of us will ever forget. Some of it’s been amazing, some terrifying but I for one am grateful for the catalytic changes that have been moved forward. For one, diversity, equity and inclusion will never be the same. Of course it's horrifying and unacceptable it took tragedy to create momentum – but I’m grateful Employee Relations, DE&I and leaders all around us are rising to the challenge. Let’s keep up the momentum in 2021.
Community. If there’s ever been a year we needed each other, this has been it. One example for me is the Employee Relations community, the absolute essence of connection and sharing – and of a team you can rely on in a crisis. When we all faced the unknown this year, ER teams around the world were put in the spotlight – handling remote work, mental health issues, accommodations, diversity and so much more, with grace.
I know I have written about this before, but I continue to be impressed by and, yes, grateful for this unbelievable group of professionals. I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving!
Clients. Many of our clients are also Employee Relations professionals, so you get thanked twice – but you deserve more! You work hard every day to build strong cultures for your employees as you manage employee issues with grace. Thank you!
I thought about this as I watched a few client “Spotlight Videos” created for our Employee Relations Roundtable. I was struck by every single one of them. They all talked about their commitment and passion for their employees, their organizations and how technology helps them build more transparent teams.
One spoke about how he has been using HR Acuity to manage his data for more than a decade!
It’s almost impossible to believe some of us have been together for that long. I am so truly grateful for every one of our clients. We appreciate you every day of the year, not just Thanksgiving. It is just a wonderful excuse to be grateful.
So thank you!!!
Colleagues. A tough aspect of the pandemic has been our separation from colleagues – but I am extremely grateful for how well we have all pivoted to work virtually and of course, that we are all safe.
And, for us at HR Acuity, it’s actually brought out some fun and personal aspects that we did not know about each other. Our HR Acuity team has managed to stay connected with regular teaming calls that have included Zoom Karaoke (!), yoga, Name that Tune, diversity training and so much more.
Some of these we would have done for sure – but others I don’t know, and they were great. Or, if not great, at least hilarious and fun. In some ways, being apart has brought us closer together – and I am very grateful for that.
I could go on and on – trusted and treasured connections. Guidance from trusted mentors. Family (of course.) What I want to express above all is this – I hope each and every one of you has a great Thanksgiving, a wonderful holiday season and no matter what the new year holds, I have no question we will all be there for each other.
Many thanks from all of us at HR Acuity to all of you!
Deb Muller is the CEO of HR Acuity, a technology solution that combines documentation, process, and human expertise so organizations can meet the challenge of managing employee relations in the modern world. Be proactive. Manage risk. Create a safer workplace.