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11 posts from June 2010

June 30, 2010

Staying healthy: your job or your employer's?

 


Exercise  This is the time of year, especially in Florida, when we are more conscious of how we look. Who wants to put on a swimsuit if you haven't worked out in months, maybe years?

So who is to blame for our out-of-shape bodies? Our boss who expects us to crank out more work with fewer bodies around to help or ourselves for not making the effort to be healthy?

I was invited to University of Miami's wellness center on its medical campus in downtown Miami and witnessed dozens of employees exercising in a palatial facility at lunchtime. Sure, beats packing on the calories from chomping on an overpriced sandwich. Of course, it's a lot easier to exercise when the gym is close by your office and your boss encourages you to exercise by giving you flexibility. Still, plenty of UM employees don't bother.

These days, employers are becoming much more mindful that they need to do something if they want to keep their healthcare increases from soaring out of control. But how far can they go in coaxing their employees to get fit? I tackled the topic in my Miami Herald column today


 


The Miami Herald

Balancing Act: Fitness pays in the workplace

It is lunchtime and dozens of workers at University of Miami's medical campus are running on treadmills, stretching in yoga classes and lifting weights in an on-site gym the size of a football field. Anne Auguste emerges from a spinning class drenched in sweat and proclaiming she feels energized.

``I look good and I feel good,'' Auguste says. ``If you work here, there's no reason not to be physically fit.''

The University of Miami has spent $40 million to build and maintain two on-campus wellness centers and offer programs to get its employees fit and healthy. It even has offered financial incentives to encourage participation from those less enthusiastic than Auguste, such as $150 medical premium credit for participating in an online health assessment and a 20 percent rebate on their wellness center membership.

But like many other employers, the university still is grappling with whether its investment in wellness pays off and how far to go in coaxing employees to participate.

As wellness programs continue to proliferate, this question becomes increasing valid: With employers picking up more healthcare costs, whose business is it if you are healthy -- yours or the company you work for?

``It's not clear where the line is or should be between personal responsibility and employer involvement,'' says Dr. Kevin Volpp, director of University of Pennsylvania's Center for Health Incentives.

In the last few years, corporate wellness programs have been fueled by employer desire to curb increases in healthcare costs, cut back on absenteeism and make employees more productive. Even when other benefits were cut during the recession, experts say companies continue to add wellness programs. Now, with healthcare reform ready to kick in, more employers are poised to dangle financial incentives and use creative measures to keep get their workers healthier.

INCENTIVES

Beginning in 2014, under health reform, employers can offer greater incentives to employees for participating in corporate wellness programs or meeting certain health targets. Those incentives can include reduced premiums, cash rebates or merchandise. At least a third of U.S. companies already offer financial incentives or are planning to introduce them, according to Volpp.

Some employers have gone a different route, coaxing participation in wellness programs through heavy-handed measures. Whole Foods CEO John Mackey caused a stir earlier this year when he announced employees' biometric screenings would determine what discount level they'll receive on health insurance. Those with BMI over 30 would not qualify for a discount at all.

Critics call Mackey's heavy-handed way of measuring health ``arbitrary'' and claim it gives a bonus to those who already are genetically thin.

Yet, as America fights a seemingly intractable obesity problem, healthcare costs are soaring. And with the new healthcare reform law, more companies may have to deal with the burden.

``Employers have to do something. Waiting for workers to get healthier on their own just isn't working,'' Volpp says. ``Most employers are still trying to figure out what's appropriate.''

If employee health is a personal matter, often employees know how to get healthy, but aren't taking action.

Gary Levin says he had all kinds of excuses for avoiding exercise and only took action when his employer stepped in. After a company-administered health risk assessment, Levin, administrative director of Florida Cancer Data at University of Miami, received an e-mail invitation encouraging participation in a cardiovascular group program three nights a week. They offered him a financial incentive to sign up.

Levin meets with a trainer who works with a small group looking to lose weight and build strength. His participation means he must leave his office by 3:45 p.m. three times a week, requiring flexibility in his schedule. ``They have given me motivation and opportunity.''

Of course, the danger in incentives is that employees will collect and fall back into their old behavior. Volpp points out that changing behavior long term, particularly with weight loss, is difficult, tricky to measure, and often does not pay off for employers.

CHANGING BEHAVIOR

A Miami food distributor pointed out to me: ``Why should I spend money on long-term results when there's no guarantee that the employee will stick around. And, by adding financial rewards, will that really change a person's behavior? It's like paying your kids to study.''

Rose Stanley, work-life practice leader with WorldatWork, a global human resources association, believes it would take at least three to five years before a company would see significant results in reduced costs.

The University of Miami realized it stood a better chance of employee participation if its culture supports wellness. It has instructed managers to encourage staff to attend wellness classes and to be flexible in allowing them time to go; managers also are evaluated on how actively they promote wellness in their departments.

Jennifer Cohen, director of UM Benefits, says figuring out return on investment is ``like finding the Holy Grail.'' The university just began tracking wellness spending in January 2009 and expects it to take years to determine a possible payoff.

``You can't measure what you save when someone avoids going to the emergency room,'' Cohen says, however, ``At the end of the day, we know it's better to help people get healthy. There's inherent value.''




© 2010 Miami Herald Media Company. All Rights Reserved.
http://www.miamiherald.com


Read more: http://www.miamiherald.com/2010/06/29/v-print/1707531/fitness-pays-in-the-workplace.html#ixzz0sLiPP6oZ

June 28, 2010

Better work life balance means being emotionally present

You made it through traffic, deadlines and the annoyances of the day and you're finally home to spend time with your family. But how present are you? Are you thinking about the email you are expecting or maybe you're going to make one more work call on your cell to check on? 

Ryan Seacrest just tweeted about a nanny who called in and said cell phones get in the way of quality time with parents and kids. Ryan asked if we agree. My response: Guilty!  My daughter was furious with me this weekend because I was on the cell phone with a work call during time alone with her in the car. I admit it: it's difficult these days to give my family my undivided attention. 

Here's another reason to feel guilty for not being in the now. Sue Shellenbarger points out on The Juggle blog that not being in the now can affect our baby's sleep . She writes: "Now comes research suggesting that just being there isn’t enough; parents have to be emotionally available too, to foster sound slumber in their babies. Your warmth, calm and sensitivity to your baby’s feelings at bedtime may have an even greater impact than your actions on whether your child will sleep well, says the study, published in the latest issue of the Journal of Family Psychology."

“Parents’ emotional availability at bedtimes may be as important, if not more important, than bedtime practices in predicting infant sleep quality,” the study says.

This probably is true for older kids, too. However, my teens are sleeping to noon whenever they don't have school so there's no visible signs that my behavior is affecting their night's sleep.

Yet I confess, as a parent, heck even as a wife, I find it's tough sometimes to emotionally present. I find as the kids get older and more independent, it's easier to get absorbed in work thoughts at all hours. With so much information coming at me and so much that I need to get done, it's challenging to be emotionally available at bedtime or frankly at anytime.

Readers, is being emotionally available at home a challenge for you?




June 24, 2010

Balancing Work and Family No Matter Where You Are

You've got a screaming kid waiting for dinner, your boss on the phone asking questions and a pot of noodles about to boil over. You start to wonder how women balance work and family, especially in other countries where they have fewer resources and corporate support.

Well a new book is about to shed some light on the topic. Nuria Chinchilla, Mireia Las Heras  and Aline Masuda have authored a new book, Balancing Work and Family: No Matter Where You Are

Here's a question and answer piece on the book in The Sloan Work and Family Research Network Newsletter.

Which family-responsible corporate policies appear to be the most successful across the globe, influencing employee satisfaction, commitment, and performance?

This is a tricky question. We observed that there is actually no single “most successful policy” that improves employee satisfaction, commitment, and performance across the globe....employees are happy when they work in a family-responsible environment. So instead of looking at the most effective policy across the globe, I would focus on the most effective organizational culture across the globe.  Having a family-responsible culture is important because the environment supports and creates informal ways to help employees cope with work-life conflict

 

China How does national culture affect how people experience work-family pressure, and how do these differences influence the selection and implementation of company family-responsible programs?

Chinese employees are more likely to experience stress from work demands than family. In Latin America, the culture about family caregiving encourages women to really commit to care for their children and the elderly in the family. However, in South America the situation is rather different. The key issue for employees or the “most important” thing in their lives is to care for their loved ones, and they report that family life directly impacts their performance.

 

Please discuss how the influx of women into labor markets across the globe has influenced changes in family-responsible corporate policies.

 Most of the barriers and challenges that women around the globe face in professional advancement do not seem to be deliberate attempts to discourage women from managerial positions, but are subtle reminiscences of workplaces that were designed in an era when the breadwinner-homemaker pattern was considered mainstream.

Could you describe companies that have created family-responsible environments?

Hundreds of companies have created family-responsible environments. In the book, we share many examples of specific companies that have created such environments.

 

Have you ever lived abroad and experienced a different take on corporate expectations and cultural expectations when it comes to balancing work and family? Do you think we have it better or worse in the United States?

 


Work life balance on vacation...Is it possible to detach?


Look around when you are at an airport or even on a cruise ship. Almost everyone is tapping on the keyboard of their Iphone or BlackBerry or laptop. From talking to people in the business world, it looks like almost everyone I know plans to stay connected to the office when they travel. As far as work life balance goes...will it be almost impossible to detach on vacation as technology makes it so much easier for us to stay connected?

I tackled the topic in my Miami Herald column today. I'm curious to hear whether you plan to check in with your workplace when you take your summer vacation. Do you think checking in will prevent you from feeling as recharged as you normally would feel?


The Miami Herald

Detaching on vacation getting harder to pull off

As my husband and I plan a summer vacation, there are two items we definitely will bring -- a laptop with a wireless card. Like most American workers, we cringe at the thought of leaving home without them, convinced that we must respond to e-mail from a cabin in the mountains or a hotel room in an oceanside resort.

And so, as we plan on taking time off this summer, we have no real intention to cut ties with our offices. It should be no surprise that most American workers think as we do. With companies staffed lean, fear of job loss still an issue, and technology putting the Internet in our pockets, this likely will be the most difficult summer ever for workers to detach.

Workplace expert John Challenger's advise against even trying: ``You don't have to spend a part of every vacation day working, but you want to take your cellphone and laptop and make an effort to occasionally check in with the office. If you want to be missed a lot, do not disconnect.''

Across the board, there's acknowledgment that workers need vacations this year. WFD Consulting's Second Annual Survey of Workload found that even as the economy has begun to improve, workloads for employees and managers continue to increase and the stress is taking its toll.

LONGER VACATIONS

Unlike last summer when workers hesitated to take paid leave out of fear for job security, this summer they are planning to take vacations, according to a new CareerBuilder survey. They also are planning to take longer vacations -- mostly a week to two weeks -- as opposed to last summer when extended weekends were the norm.

``Last year people were panicked,'' says Keith Brauer, vice president of Human Resources for Health Plus. ``This year they have gotten slightly past that.''

But Jason Ferrara, a senior career advisor with CareerBuilder, believes we have entered a new era in which professionals will never again take work-free vacations.

``Technology has made it so easy to step away without really ever being gone. There's an attitudinal shift that says ``I don't care when you work, just get it done. That translates into vacation. I know you're not in the office but there's an undertone that says, `make sure you still get it done.' ''

Gone are the good old days when companies hired temporary staff to fill in when workers took their vacations. Now, there's an expectation that workers will keep up with client needs and workplace concerns while out of the office.

Nearly half (49 percent) of the employers surveyed by CareerBuilder say they expect employees to check in with the office while they are away, with 37 percent indicating it'll be necessary only if they are working on a big project or there is a major issue going on with the company.

Even though Brauer's company has summer interns helping out, he plans to check in while on vacation in Pennsylvania where he will move his son into his college dorm. ``I don't know anyone that truly disengages from work ever anymore,'' he says. ``Some of it is the reality of the workload. I'm more relaxed if I know I'm not coming back to a headache.''

SETTING THE TONE

Many believe if the boss checks in, it sets the expectation. Karen Baker, a district manager and self-described workaholic, struggled to pry herself from her laptop while her family whined about getting out of their hotel room to see the sights. With her retail company under pressure to control costs, she says, ``It was always in the back of my mind: What's happening at work? Are things going OK?''

She says she wouldn't penalize a staffer who doesn't check in but has an unspoken expectation that they will touch base.

This era of the half-hearted vacations is creating angst for those who go to great lengths to afford the vacation they take this summer.

Caryl Fantel is vice president of communications in the family business, Mr. Food.com.

She has cobbled together a second honeymoon to California this summer, using frequent flier miles and rewards points. She says she is committed to ensuring she leaves work worries behind, ``otherwise it is not really a vacation.''

GETTING READY

To pull it off, she began preparing early, training her co-workers to fill in and began assuring them, ``I'm only a phone call away. If you need me, call me.''

Meanwhile Rich Thompson, vice president of learning and performance for Adecco, found a way to stay in contact without letting work overtake fun. ``Wake up early before your family gets up, knock out priority e-mail and leave the BlackBerry behind for the day,'' he says. ``I tell them if they need me, call me on my wife's cell. Who's really going to call on a spouse's cell?''




© 2010 Miami Herald Media Company. All Rights Reserved.
http://www.miamiherald.com

June 22, 2010

How to be a better dad

With Father's Day behind us, I've been thinking a lot about the role dads play today. I marvel at how involved some dads are in their children's lives and how they rearrange their work schedules and make sacrifices

But I wonder, Is it better to have a dad that's only slightly involved in a child's life, one who pops in and out as he desires, or is it better to have a dad that's completely uninvolved and ask a mentor to step in and play the dad role?

In his Father's Day column Leonard Pitts writes: We have great scorn for the mother who refuses to be a mom. By contrast we impose little or no social sanction from the father who declines to be a dad.So when you see those profiles of the heroic single father, what you are really seeing is a seal of approval, a social attaboy, that some man made the right choice. Maybe, though, we should begin to wonder at the cultural mind-set which allows him that choice.

For a boy, having a dad pop in and out of their life on a whim, seems to tear down confidence. I think a father who plans to be half there for his child, would be more of a father if he finds a full time role model or mentor for his son -- someone to be there emotionally on a regular basis.

On Monday, President Barack Obama pledged a series of new initiatives to support responsible fatherhood. He urged fathers to mentor their own children and reach out to those in the community who don't have strong parental or guardian support. He told fathers to stop making excuses and take economic and emotional responsibility for their children. Obama says the most government can do is send a message on the need for active parenting.

Is a message enough? Are these fathers listening? Of course, the courts can require fathers pay child support. But what about emotional support?

Would fathers get more involved if they were penalized by government or  their employer for not giving their children ANY quality time and emotionally letting them down? Should they be forced to find a replacement mentor if they aren't up to the job?



June 17, 2010

The Ugly Side of Technology Addiction


Like most of you, I'm a technology addict. I don't think I could make it a week without a high-speed Internet connection and a fast forward button on my TV remote.

The bad news for all of us addicts is that this problem of ours, our excessive use of the Internet, cell phones and other technologies, can cause us to become more impatient, impulsive, forgetful and even more narcissistic, according to Dr. Elias Aboujaoude, director of the Impulse Clinic at Stanford. It also detracts from our time with family and friends in the real world. 

Websites like NetAddiction.com offer self-assessment tests with such questions as "Do you neglect housework to spend more time online? and "Do you lose sleep because you log in late at night?

If you answered yes to the questions above, you should know that there is no easy way to conquer this addiction. The New York Times quotes some experts who suggest simply trying to curtail the amount of time you spend online by forcing yourself to leave your cell phone at home occasionally and setting limits for how often you log on. They say technology, like food, is part of daily life and instead of giving it up entirely, we should learn moderation and controlled use.

I don't know about you but just the thought of leaving my cell phone at home - even for a day - makes me want to cringe.

Would you feel the way this University of Maryland student felt about when forced to give up technology cold turkey?  "Texting and IM'ing my friends gives me a constant feeling of comfort. When I did not have those two luxuries, I felt quite alone. Although I go to a school with thousands of students, the fact that I was not able to communicate with anyone via technology was almost unbearable."

Would it be unbearable for you to give up technology for a week?  Have you ever tried it, even for a day?

June 15, 2010

Do interns require too much time?

Summer intern With the arrival of summer, many small businesses take on interns. They are cheap, sometimes even free, and they are eager beavers, willing to do the grunt work that you and others don't want to do.

But will they require too much of your time?

Interns often have little or no work history. They need lots of hand holding and sometimes, they even seem to lack the common sense as to what's appropriate to wear to work or say at work. I have spent lots of time working with interns at The Miami Herald in one of our bureaus. They do require a lot of guidance and patience. I asked my editor Terence Shepherd for his thoughts. "They do require more guidance and that's to be expected. I think the pluses are greater than the minuses. They often do the work that veterans can't or won't do and they are more malleable. They can give the editor a different perspective, helping them reminds us how a story comes together from Point A to Point B."

"An owners who's busy running a company might find he or she also needs to become a boss/parent/teacher to an intern," says an article by Associate Press writer Joyce Rosenberg. "It can be time consuming but also rewarding."

Rosenberg points out: "Interns are supposed to be having a learning experience, not giving a company another warm body. They may need more supervision than an owner expects."

The flip side is that the time investment could pay off, if you end up hiring them eventually as full time staffers. You also have to be really careful if you have unpaid interns that they're not violating the federal Fair Labor Standards Act. (click here for the criteria)

Keep in mind, giving a student an internship has a huge impact.  The National Association for Colleges and Employers(NACE) report, found new graudates who had internships last year fared far better in the job market than those who did not.  The survey found 23 percent of those with internships who graduated in 2009 had a job lined up by April. For those who didn't, only 14 percent landed jobs by that time.

What has your experience been with summer interns? Did the person require more time and energy than you expected? Was it worth it?



June 10, 2010

Working at night has health risks

Sleep Have you ever left your house at an odd hour to take your kid on a field trip or a sick child to the emergency room and wondered, who are all these people on the road at this hour? Are they on their way to work or home from work?

There are lots of people who work the night shift. For some, it's the way they balance work and family, often doing tag team with a spouse. But studies now show that people who work night or graveyard shifts may get an hourly premium but they pay a price with their health. Working at night is linked to disrupted sleep and puts you at risk for health problems such as obesity, heart disease and cancer, according study cited in the Los Angeles Times.

Researchers found people who feel most fatigued begin their work shift at 11 p.m. The people who feel least fatigued begin their work shift at 9 a.m.  However, starting a shift anywhere from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. allows for people to go to bed at a decent time and have the least amount of uninterrupted sleep.

Did you realize your body/health is sensitive to work shifts? Would that make a difference in whether you accept a job or a shift?

June 09, 2010

What I Wish I Knew Earlier in My Career

Are there times at work when you say to yourself, "Wow I wish I knew that years ago?"

With so many graduations this month, I asked people in various professions what work/life and career advice they would offer a new graduate.

In regards to work and family, two answer are worth sharing:

Know your priorities: Sissy DeMaria,co-owner of Kreps DeMaria and mother of three college-age daughters, says family has to come before work. She remembers the time she went to a meeting with a demanding client instead of her daughter’s 3rd grade talent show. “The meeting wasn’t the most important and when I went to pick up my daughter from school, everyone told me how great she was and I felt like the biggest heal for missing it. That was a painful lesson.”

Don’t be afraid to say no. Richard Lampen, CEO of Ladenburg Thalmann recalls a critical time in his career when he was asked by Solomon Brothers, his employer, to relocate to Tokyo. Lampen said the move would have been good for his career, but not his family. He said no to the relocation, left the firm and found another job in Miami, where his family wanted to live. “In ways that at the time I never could have predicted, it was best decision, but it was driven by something other than career goals.”

 

Below is my Herald column on the topic that appeared in print today:


The Miami Herald

College grads, welcome to the real world of jobs

For this Spring's new batch of college graduates, the job market presents a decidedly mixed picture.  It made me contemplate, “What career advice would I give a grad in these strange economic times?

 I remember the uncertainty I felt when I took off my cap and gown without a job lined up. In the years that followed as a journalist who has interviewed people in various professions, I discovered that regardless of what career you pursue, to advance you must put in more hours than what’s on paper. This is a lot easier if, like me, you enjoy what you do to earn a paycheck.

Inevitably, you will struggle with the balance between your job and your life outside of it. There will be times when you will have to refocus your priorities and make choices. I would tell a grad, “never be afraid to make a change that you believe will improve your life.”   

There will be times when you will have to refocus your priorities and make choices. I would tell a grad, ``Never be afraid to make a change that you believe will improve your life.''

I asked an assortment of people in various industries for their career advice for the horde of fresh-faced young Americans seeking to enter the workforce. Below are their suggestions.

Connections are crucial. In trying to achieve work-life balance, time for networking must be part of the mix. Today, opportunities abound to join professional groups and network. Dorothy Eisenberg, a partner at Gerson, Preston, Robinson & Co., made the time and reaped huge rewards. She wishes she had known years earlier the value of joining networking groups. ``Your first job probably is not going to be your last one. Think of it as a stepping stone and keep circulating.''



Amy Amy Sussman: 'If you treat people well, you can have a prosperous career and family life.'
There will be times when you will have to refocus your priorities and make choices. I would tell a grad, ``Never be afraid to make a change that you believe will improve your life.''

I asked an assortment of people in various industries for their career advice for the horde of fresh-faced young Americans seeking to enter the workforce. Below are their suggestions.

Connections are crucial. In trying to achieve work-life balance, time for networking must be part of the mix. Today, opportunities abound to join professional groups and network. Dorothy Eisenberg, a partner at Gerson, Preston, Robinson & Co., made the time and reaped huge rewards. She wishes she had known years earlier the value of joining networking groups. ``Your first job probably is not going to be your last one. Think of it as a stepping stone and keep circulating.''

Conduct yourself with integrity. In business, it's easy to cut corners to save time or clinch a deal. Amy Sussman of EWM Realtors in Coral Gables says she has learned the value of honesty and a good reputation. ``If you treat people well, you can have a prosperous career and family life.'' Sussman says she just landed a referral from a new friend who admired her integrity. ``It can become as viral as a great story on the Internet.''

Love your work. Tim Petrillo, owner of several of Fort Lauderdale's most popular dining spots, Tarpon Bend, YOLO and O Lounge, encourages college grads to find a career they enjoy. He says if you love what you do, work will be fun and success will follow. Petrillo the father of young girls, puts in long hours as a Fort Lauderdale restaurateur and knows that to be successful it takes hard work, energy and sacrifice. ``If it's a job you're not interested in doing, it becomes a pain and you don't put in the extra effort.''

Don't stop learning. Elaine Szeto, a senior vice president with PNC Financial Services Group, believes learning is ongoing. She wishes she knew earlier in her career that you don't have to be all-knowing all the time. ``Give yourself permission to ask questions. I think that's the way to be successful.''

Experience matters. Many of today's graduates want to be entrepreneurs right out of school. I read a blog post by Scott K. Field, an Austin, Texas, solo law practitioner, who had some great advice to graduates considering immediately going solo: Don't. ``A recent graduate should find a job somewhere where he can gain experience and receive on-the-job training. `` Field insists. ``Experience matters.''

Seek a mentor. Aida Levitan broke barriers as a leader in Hispanic marketing and advertising. Levitan says as a young up-and-comer trying to have an outside life and get ahead, she found it difficult to find a mentor who understood the challenges that Hispanic women face. Even more, she was afraid to ask, worried it looked as if she were a slacker.

``I wish I had taken the initiative, identified someone and asked to be mentored.'' She considers mentoring critical to getting on the fast track today. ``Find someone who likes to teach and share and go to that person and ask for help,'' she advises.

Don't expect too much too soon. Few of us are lucky enough to land the perfect job in our 20s. Eduardo Marturet, music director and conductor of The Miami Symphony, sees college graduates getting easily frustrated if they don't land the ideal job immediately. His advice: ``You have to have a good deal of experience from other jobs in order to be ready for the ideal job.''

What career or work/life advice would you give a new college graduate?




© 2010 Miami Herald Media Company. All Rights Reserved.
http://www.miamiherald.com

 






© 2010 Miami Herald Media Company. All Rights Reserved.
http://www.miamiherald.com


June 08, 2010

Is Helen Thomas still a role model?

Helen
Yesterday, Helen Thomas resigned. What a sad day for women in business!

As a female journalist, I have admired Helen Thomas for many years. Who wouldn't? She has been an awesome role model for women, demanding respect in the mostly male White House press corps. As UPI bureau chief, she has covered every president since Kennedy and is best known as the reporter traditionally first recognized at presidential press conferences where she sits front and center. 

Look around newsrooms today and most are at least half female. Helen made that possible. I can only imagine the personal sacrifices she made for work. She had to prove herself again and again over 50 years of covering the White House. For that, for her longevity doing what she enjoys, and for getting essential information to Americans, she is my hero.

But Thomas made a mistake last month and spoke too candidly about her opinion of Jews in Israel. (Read the full story here) Now, all that hard work is overshadowed by hysteria over her comments. What a shame!  At age 89, (yes you read that age correctly) Thomas was forced to resign.

Yesterday, realtor Amy Sussman with ESM Realtors sent me a quote that she lives by. It's so apropos to this Thomas debacle that I have to share it:

"It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five

minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you'll do things

differently." --Warren Buffet

 

Time will tell whether Thomas is remembered as an accomplished journalist/role model for women or for what some consider "outrageous" remarks. I intended to remember her as pioneer. Does this debacle change your opinion of Thomas' place in history?