My second-best friend (my wife is my best friend) bemoaned the choice of birthday cards available for his selection for my birthday this past month. "It's like the greeting card people took a year off!" he said.
I told him he was correct. I don't know how greeting card writers conduct their work, but I suspect they get together and feed off each other. In the past year, they could not do that and apparently it shows in the results.
Now, just as we are all finally getting back to normal, the authorities tell us to go back to wearing masks. This is going to be a downer for everyone.
Some CEOs, completely fed up with their accelerator foot only partially pressed to the floor, are very frustrated and telling the troops you are going to come back to work no matter what.
For those that want distributed working, Dell has just announced it will no longer be shipping its very high-end computers to California and six other states who have electrical usage mandates being implemented precluding the use of these kilowatt burners.
What's a CEO to do?
It is clear to me that managing people is becoming far more granular than it has been in the past. No longer will human resource policies come in a one size fits all package. While making sure you do not run afoul of federal and state labor laws (and don't forget union contracts where applicable), you will be designing jobs for unique fit in the future. And dealing with employee perceived favoritism jealousies.
Everyone does not need to be at your place of employment. You will have to decide who can work remotely and why. Maybe like the greeting card writers they need to be in the same room. Or perhaps they could collaborate online if only California would allow them to have a computer with the capabilities to do so.
For sure, your job as CEO just got tougher, and pulling out the employee handbook from 2019 seems so, well, so 2019.
New rules, new ways, normal is not normal.
Jim Thompson is CEO of Paperitalo Publications.