3 Hard A** Photos About Change During the COVID Lockdown...

You see it every day - change is a given during the COVID Lockdown. 

With that in mind, I present 3 photos (with links as appropriate) from the last week that made me go hmmmm - and make me wonder where we are headed when we get to the new normal.

(email subscribers click through if you don't see the images below)

PHOTO ONE - The Vampires have come for the restaurant industry, and was unrelated to COVID, happening before the pandemic. But the lockdown period gave the Vampires the equivalent of performance enhancing drugs. This photo is a summary of the net proceeds a restaurant received from 40+ orders:

Grubhub

Yeah, that's right. This pizza place in Chicago netted 37% of the order when using Grubhub. While the economics of delivery services were difficult for eateries before COVID, if the pandemic accelerated the delivery trend, it's going to be hard to be the next Bobby Flay. Turns out you are only helping you neighborhood Italian place survive if you go pick it up and just wipe down, which let's face it, isn't that big of deal unless you live in one of the 4 hotspots.

PHOTO TWO - If Wall Street Doesn't need to go in, who in white collar America does?  This photo and accompanying article on Wall Street brokers doing just fine working from home feels a bit like a canary in the coal mine.  As Lenin once said, there are decades where nothing happens and weeks where decades happen - feels like a bad time to be in the commercial real estate business.

Wallstreet

PHOTO THREE - A Toyota Engine factory in Hurstville is getting back to work, and this break room photo tells you everything you need to know. 4 person tables are now two, there's a big plexiglass divider to ensure you don't spittle on someone as you talk, and in case you missed it, the big red things on the floor instruct you not to sit "there".  We all knew this was coming, but this was the first one I saw. Awesome for the introverts.

Toyota

Stay healthy, my friends!!


HR Trails Almost Everyone Other Career Related to Freelancing - Let's Discuss...

Welcome to the recession, team! It's just like any other recession, except that it was caused by a Global Pandemic, which seems a bit - extreme.

But I digress. If we're no longer in the peak economic cycle and over 30 million Americans Sidehustlehave hit unemployment since mid-March (WTF, and the number is likely much bigger if you count all the underutilized employees that companies are holding onto via cash reserves and stimulus programs like the Payroll Protection Act), it seems like a good time to talk about freelancing, because all of us might need an alternative source of income at some point in the near future.

You know, a side hustle.

Who's good at having a side hustle? According to research conducted by The Hustle, a nifty little business newsletter you can get delivered to you daily, it's who you would expect. Professions most likely to have a side hustle are first and foremost creative pursuits, the kind where companies often have difficulty justifying a full time position. Graphic design, online media and photography all lead the charge in freelancing and putting together portfolio careers rather than relying on (or being able to rely on) a single source of income (email subscribers, click through if you don't see the charts below).

Hustle 1

What's that? How's HR doing related to having a side hustle?

Shitty.

I regret to inform you we are neither good at it or comfortable with it. See the chart below from the same research, which shows HR as the third least likely profession to have a side hustle, behind the sexy, risk-taking tribes that are lawyers and engineers (woof).

Hustle HR

For god's sake, bankers experiment more with a side hustle than we do. #sad

If you're reading this post as an HR or talent pro, I've got good news for you - you're already hungry for knowledge and experimentation with the status quo, or you wouldn't be here. 

Why do HR people rarely experiment with the side hustle?  Some thoughts:

--We write the policies on the people side and it feels a little hypocritical to do our own thing after we wrote the blurb on moonlighting.

--Our profession is made of up of rules people, and having more than one job doesn't feel like it's in compliance.

--Our skill set doesn't lend itself to side hustle as the work product isn't as transferrable as the graphic designer. 

--We simply aren't a profession full of entrepreneurs. #truth 

Let's examine some of those reasons. We ARE full of rules people and if we wrote the policy manual, we're compelled to follow it. But that sounds like it might be time to reexamine the policy in a gig economy. 

As far as whether our skill set lends itself to the side hustle or not, well, all you really need to do is look at the tens of thousands of HR Consultants who have hung their own shingle to help small business in American and it's clear - the transferrable skill set argument doesn't hold water.

The real reason for such a low side hustle score is we are full of rules people, and HR for the most part doesn't have an entrepreneurial spirit.

And that's 100% ok.  But in a recession that looks like it may be deep and long, it's probably time to figure out what you could sell if you had to.

There's never a better time to look for a side hustle writing an employee handbook for a small company than... wait for it... when you still have a job.

Recession = get ready to bootstrap.


When Employees Want COVID Unemployment Over a Job at Your Company...

This post is for the business owners (and the HR pros who support them) that have lower paying jobs that have been thrown into turmoil by the COVID lockdown and the resulting recession. The company I'm a part of isn't part of this situation, but I've been following the news closely.

As expected, federal enhancements to unemployment meant to aid the unemployed is causing confusion and frustration among some business owners, laid-off workers, and the employed, according to interviews.

The federal program pays $600 weekly to the unemployed, in addition to state unemployment payments. With the extra federal money, workers in more than half of US Unemployment states will receive, on average, more than they were earning while employed, according to an analysis detailed by The New York Times.

If you go read the article, you'll see those who got a raise (or could) through federal unemployment analyzing it like this:

"Marcus Anthony, a 48-year-old warehouse worker in Macon, Georgia, said he was receiving $300 more weekly in unemployment benefits — for a total of $730 after taxes — than he would with his regular paycheck.

He said he's feeling conflicted about his eventual return to work.

The extra money "will undoubtedly come in handy during these uncertain times but will be missed when I'm called back to work because I make far less," he said. "On the upside, I guess after the pandemic I hope to return to a life of normalcy with a full-time job with full benefits."

And this:

"Miriam G., who requested that her last name remain private, said she initially felt relieved when she was spared from layoffs at the public-relations firm where she worked in New York City and instead given a pay cut.

Now, she's thinking her laid-off colleagues might be better off.

"I'm trying to decide how is the best method to go about the conversation with my management about how unemployment benefits are more supportive right now than my steady paycheck," she said. "

Add to this employers who thought they were heroes by getting a loan to continue operations through the Payroll Protection Act, only to find their employees pissed that they would get employment protected rather than go into unemployment due to the pay differential, and it's clear - employers have a lot to consider (click on the link if you haven't seen the story, it's a doozy).

So what do you do if you're an employer and you have the following?

1--Employees who don't want you to protect jobs because unemployment is richer, or 

2--Employees who have been furloughed but are signaling they don't want you to bring them back for the same reason.

My advice? First, understand and be empathetic to the fact that some may actually be prioritizing their safety over the money.

Now that we've got that out of the way, let's get real. I offer up the following quote from Don Draper on Mad Men for all the business owners who feel slighted and under-appreciated by these circumstances:

People tell you who they are, but we ignore it because we want them to be who we want them to be.” 

Simply put, when people who are working full schedules (or you're paying in full while you try to wait this out) want to get the compensation provided by the Federal unemployment benefit - or want to stay out and not return to work if you furloughed them and want to bring them back, they're telling you what they value most.

Money in the pocket during a recession is key. So you can't blame the people who view the world in that way, right?

Right.

But you can prioritize the people who didn't feel that way for the rest of your company's existence. You know the ones I'm talking about - the ones who never blinked, who never considered that going on unemployment is better than working, regardless of the compensation of both paths.

Simply put, the people who never blinked and valued the job over the unemployment compensation are the building blocks of your company moving forward.

There's a work ethic in this group. If you find yourself in this situation as an employer of folks who net under 30K annually, you should be empathetic to the group that wants to get as much compensation as possible, but you should never view them the same as the folks who wanted the job - above and beyond all else.

At some point, the benefits run out and we are likely still in a recession with employment levels significantly lower than what we knew before March 2020.

Protect the people who hung with you during this time. They're different. There's something in them that made them value the job over all else. Celebrate the group who hung tight and refused to join the group think that unemployment was better than a job.

They're who you build around coming out of this.


COVID Lockdown Netflix Recommendation - "American Factory"

I know, you're burned out on streaming. You've worked through a bunch of things during the COVID lockdown - you whipped through Joe Exotic, Ozark and Bosch - and you found yourself working through a 3rd tier series like Last Chance U.

I see you America. That's why I'm here with a Netflix Recommendation that only a professional manager or HR person could get excited about. American factory

AMERICAN FACTORY.

Let's get started with the description of this two-hour documentary from Wikipedia:

American Factory (美国工厂美國工廠) is a 2019 American documentary film directed by Steven Bognar and Julia Reichert, about Chinese company Fuyao's factory in Moraine, a city near Dayton, Ohio, that occupies Moraine Assembly, a shuttered General Motors plant. The film had its festival premiere at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival. It is distributed by Netflix and is the first film produced by Barack and Michelle Obama's production company, Higher Ground Productions. It won an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature.

Filmed from February 2015 until the end of 2017, Reichert and Bognar were granted filming access by Fuyao at both their Ohio and Chinese plant locations. They were inspired to make this film as the events they aimed to depict were taking place in the same Moraine Assembly plant once occupied by General Motors, which was the central topic of their 2009 Oscar-nominated documentary short The Last Truck: Closing of a GM Plant.

I know what you're expecting: China bad, plight of the American blue collar worker miserable.

Turns out, it's more complicated than that.

GM closing the plant follows this script.  But then a Chinese company, Fuyao Glass America, shows up to reopen it. Chinese companies buy American companies all the time. Big deal, right? But Fuyao let the filmmakers film everything.

And so American Factory isn't 100% about the plight of American industry or the workers it left behind as globalization occurred . The part that is astonishing about American Factory is that it shows it all through the eyes of Chinese factory workers and managers arriving to reopen and restaff a plant in the rust belt - as well as through the eyes of the Americans. 

You'll be rocked when the crew travels to China for company celebrations and you see the attitudes of the Chinese workers and the whiplash cutaways to the American plant and team (spoiler alert - the USA team has about 20% of the urgency of the Chinese team).  The Chinese team doing the same work as the Americans are standing on marks for quick team meetings before the start of their shift. They're celebrating the company through skits, song and other group activities that would make 99% of Americans cringe.

You'll also be rocked as you see young Chinese managers and Chinese workers in the Toledo plant (brought over to help launch the plant) come to grips with the limitations of the American workforce they've hired.

If you haven't had great exposure to globalization yet in your career, I can't recommend American Factory enough. 10 out of 10. As a manager of people or an HR pro, you'll find the contrast between cultures fascinating and the HR and management issues in this culture mashup fascinating.

Globalization is full of gray. I'm 100% on team USA, but American Factory keep you honest about what it takes to compete in global economy. 

Trailer below (email subscribers click through to view):


ASK KRISTIAN DUNN, LIFE COACH: What's The Equivalent of the Informal Office "Hey" During the COVID Lockdown?

Capitalist Note: From time to time, one of my high-level friends will ask me a question that causes me to cease being Kris Dunn (HR Leader and HR Pro) and morph into Kristian Dunn (life coach/executive coach, my real name btw). These are their questions and my well thought out answers worth at least $500/hour (ha). Submit your questions to Kristian Dunn, Life Coach, by messaging him on LinkedIn.

---------

Dear Kristian:

I'm an executive who should break through to the C-level in a major company in the next 5 years. I find that during the COVID-era working remote I'm struggling to find informal Life coachplaces to connect with my team. What's the equivalent of the informal office "Hey" during the COVID lockdown?

Signed - Janet

---------

Janet - 

Great question. The short answer is that there are no natural informal "hey" moments in COVID lockdown life. You're not going to walk by someone on the way to the ladies room, in the break room or in the lobby. There are no random encounters when you're working from your plush, Pottery Barn-styled home office at the home McMansion and your direct report is set up at their Kitchen table and has their 3-year old throwing Cheerios at them the majority of the day.

Your instincts are right. Having no informal moments may make you seem unapproachable, and you're right to understand that could be career limiting for you if this whole pandemic thing goes on too long. The verbatims that could be written on your 2nd quarter engagement flash report from your directs and 2nd and 3rd level team members include the following:

--"Janet feels a little aloof"

--"I sometimes wonder about Janet's EQ"

--"You know that boss on The Devil wears Prada"?  That's how Janet makes me feel"

--"Janet's kind of cold bitch. I'm not feeling it"

Any and all of these are like kryptonite to your career. That means you're going to have to work a little harder in the COVID period to seem approachable. Simply put, here's your reality:

"During the COVID lockdown, there are no random encounters. That means your job is to plan random encounters/engagement that provide the appearance of warmth and empathy"

Not sure how to do that?  Ideas include the following:

--Text each direct report 2x a week with an article that would interest them that shows you're connected. Ask your assistant for help if you're not sure what that is.

--Message each person (Slack, Glip, whatever) who reports to your direct reports once every two weeks with some recognition for something they did well. Ask your direct reports how their teams are doing in your 1/1s for fodder for this activity.

--Share a story on your team calls to show you're struggling just like everyone else. Note: Talking about how your direct connection to Fiber at your house seems a little slow these days is not the story to use. Remember most of your team has a cable modem, not Fiber to the house.

Bottom line - there are no chance encounters during the COVID period. You can't 1/1 meeting or Zoom team happy hour your way out of this one. Do the work if you want to appear warmer than you are during COVID.

Yours in leadership and life, 

Kristian Dunn


The HR Famous Podcast: e10 - Unlimited PTO vs Accruals - Which is Better?

In Episode 10 of The HR Famous Podcast, long-time HR leaders (and friends) Jessica Lee, Tim Sackett and Kris Dunn get together to discuss how COVID-19 has changed their daily life, the Cuomo brothers and work-life balance. Tim wants to talk about PTO: accrual vs. unlimited. What’s better? There are different answers with many variables…

The gang continues to talk about how PTO will be molded by the COVID-19 crisis with Kris wondering if unlimited PTO might attract the “average” performers. The team closes by talking about the differences in how different types of employees want their PTO and Tim brings up the demise of the Unlimited PTO plan.

Listen below and be sure to subscribe, rate and review (iTunes) and follow (Spotify)!

Show Highlights:

1:56 – Tim brings up the question “How your life was pre-coronavirus vs. now – what’s the percentage?” He says he has had a 50-60% change where Jlee has had nearly a 90% change, drinking more and bonding with family.

4:05 – KD talks about how he isn’t doing anything. He’s going on a run sometimes and avoiding people as much as possible. He’s also being a little more introspective. Tim calls KD out on his new deck-lifestyle with the cat.

7:00 – KD hits the cancel culture with a “BACK OFF” and brings up the Cuomo Brothers (recently featured in a POLITICO article , since Chris Cuomo has the coronavirus but is still doing shows from the basement. Where’s our work-life balance? Is he a bad example? JLee says haters are going to hate, and maybe he should use that sick leave – but he’s doing a service to the people by showing them what COVID-19 looks like. POLITICO is just hating.

12:10 – There’s rarely a moment where someone reaches the top without outworking someone. KD calls out the bullsh*t – for everyone, you have to put in the work and people who don’t work as hard, can’t expect the same results. You have to grind it out. Shout out to Chris Cuomo.

14:47 – Tim brings up unlimited PTO vs Accruals – you’re not going to be using 4 months of BeachPTO, but what would win if you had to choose? Would more people choose the unlimited plan?

18:26 – KD says the answer is different pre and post COVID-19. Tim brings up that HR pros have different opinions than the majority of workers.

22:15 – KD likes a system where you use it or lose it for your vacation time – but sick leave can be rolled over for extended sick leave, extended maternity leave, etc. It’s important for major medical! Jlee kind of agrees but when she was younger, she banked those days for an unused PTO pay out.

25:03 – Tim says PTO will be shaped by COVID, because people may stop coming to work sick. Hybrid PTO packages might be in our future…

28:00 – KD challenges Jlee – what plans would workers select, if they could? Jlee says, there’s no way it’s a one size fits all.

31:20 – KD asks Tim, “What plan will the top performer select?” Tim says unlimited, but Jlee and KD say no – KD says the real answer doesn’t matter because the best managers treat their high performers different.

34:48 – Jlee and KD talk about accruals being preferred over unlimited because sometimes, you don’t want anyone to call you and you want the official day off.

38:50 – The team closes it out with their final comments and how unlimited PTO just might go away post-coronavirus.

Resources:

Jessica Lee on LinkedIn

Tim Sackett on Linkedin

Kris Dunn on LinkedIn

HRU Tech

The Tim Sackett Project

The HR Capitalist

Fistful of Talent

Kinetix

Boss Leadership Training Series


Raymond K. Hessel (Fight Club) and Thinking About Wasted Time During COVID-19...

By now, most of you are approaching the 30-day mark of the great American COVID lockdown. That means the fear has started to subside, and at some point, you started thinking deeper thoughts.

You know the deep thoughts I'm talking about - the regrets, the analysis of your current situation and the "looking inward" planning for how you're going to approach all of this s**t different once the world opens back up.

I hope we all approach life differently. That would be a cool outcome from an otherwise shitty time in all of our lives.

How we hold ourselves accountable 12 months from now when we're all back to our normal lives and the COVID lockdown isn't even in our rearview mirror anymore? 

That's where we need the equivalent of Tyler Durden. That's right, Tyler Durden from the book/movie Fight Club. I stumbled across the movie late one night when I couldn't sleep about a week ago.  There's a great scene in the movie where Tyler Durden pulls a QuickTrip-typle store worker in an alley and threatens to kill him, then starts questioning him about what he wanted to be before he started working as a clerk.

The answer was a Veterinarian. Tyler hears that and then does what he was going to do all along. He says that he's going to let the clerk (Raymond K. Hessel) live, but if he's not on his way to becoming a veterinarian in 6 weeks (a year in the book), he's going to kill him.

Talk about an accountability partner.

Keep reflecting deeply about how you're going to change when things get back to normal.  Find someone to hold you accountable, just make sure it's someone more stable than Tyler Durden.

Video clip and book excerpt form the Raymond K Hessel scene below (email subscribers click through for video). Watch, read and reflect. COVID sucks, btw. Stay healthy and help flatten the curve.

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Book Excerpt from Fight Club quote (Chuck Palahniuk)

“Listen, now, you’re going to die, Raymond K. K. K. Hessel, tonight. You might die in one second or in one hour, you decide. So lie to me. Tell me the first thing off the top of your head. Make something up. I don’t give a shit. I have a gun.

Finally, you were listening and coming out of the little tragedy in your head.

Fill in the blank. What does Raymond Hessel want to be when he grows up?

Go home, you said you just wanted to go home, please.

No shit, I said. But after that, how did you want to spend your life? If you could do anything in the world.

Make something up.

You didn’t know.

Then you’re dead right now, I said. I said, now turn your head.

Death to commence in ten, in nine, in eight.

A vet, you said. You want to be a vet, a veterinarian.

You could be in school working your ass off, Raymond Hessel, or you could be dead. You choose. I stuffed your wallet into the back of your jeans. So you really wanted to be an animal doctor. I took the saltwater muzzle of the gun off one cheek and pressed it against another. Is that what you’ve always wanted to be, Dr. Raymond K. K. K. K. Hessel, a veterinarian?…

So, I said, go back to school. If you wake up tomorrow morning, you find a way to get back into school.

I have your license.

I know who you are. I know where you live. I’m keeping your license, and I’m going to check on you, mister Raymond K. Hessel. In three months, and then six months, and then a year, and if you aren’t back in school on your way to being a veterinarian, you will be dead…

Raymond K. K. Hessel, your dinner is going to taste better than any meal you’ve ever eaten, and tomorrow will be the most beautiful day of your life.


Just Your Customary Friday Quote from Vladimir Lenin on The HR Capitalist...

“There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen.”

--Vladimir Lenin Lenin

Uhh...well, I don't use quotes from Lenin often on a blog called the HR Capitalist.

But this one seemed meaningful and like one I should ponder for a few minutes. H/T Harry Joiner who reminded me of this quote.

The fact that Lenin said this is proof that if you say enough stuff, eventually something profound comes out.

#CovidLockdownDay28

 


Opportunity for Great HR Pros: Making Remote Work Recommendations Post-Covid While Cutting Rent...

It's all going to change! Once people have worked from home for this long of stretch, they're never coming back to the office!

If I could short the stock of every expert who has made these proclamations in the COVID-19 Cubeslockdown era, I would. That being said, the world of work IS likely to change based on what we've learned. But offices aren't going away. They'll change.

In white collar America, the trend has long been leaning towards more remote work. Some companies have taken the full plunge, some have barely dipped their toe in the true "remote workforce" water.

The most likely outcome in a post-COVID world? Companies with large white collar workforces are likely to ask the following questions after we're through this crisis:

What did we learn about our people's ability to work 100% remote?

What adjustments do we want to make to our previous assumptions about using remote workers?

What positive financial implications can this have for our business?

Ding! Ding! Ding! Hey HR leaders and HR pros! Some of the your companies will be late to ask these questions because everyone is in survival mode, even after people return to the office. That's why thinking about the future of work at your company should be something you own. So let's work through what your game plan should be.  Ready? Here we go.

1--Get the number of white collar professional FTEs at any location in your company. For sake of this exercise, I'm going to use "200 FTEs"

2--Get lease info - the amount of rent you pay to a landlord to support those FTEs with office space. For our exercise, I'll use this calculator that says on average, a 25 person company with average space requirements would need an estimated 6,250 square feet (25 people x 250 sf/employee).  Do the math for 200, and you arrive at 50,000 feet of space for a company/location with 200 white collar workers.

3--Calculate your current cost - I'll use an average of $24 bucks per square foot for decent space in Atlanta, which means the annual cost for 50,000 feet is $1,200,000 (note this is an effective per square foot rate after rebates, free rent and T&I).

4--Now you - the HR/Talent Pro - make a recommendation to you leadership team on that we learned a lot about working remote during COVID, and your company should take advantage of more remote work as not only a recruiting advantage, but a financial advantage.  

Run the numbers based on your current state/future state. If your company was almost 100% work in the office, you make the recommendation that we're going to drop the number of days worked in the office by your workforce by 40% (moving from 5 days a week in the office to 3), and the impact is clear. If you already had some remote days, do your own math but make the cuts related to time in the office significant.

5--Calculate the savings and make your recommendation. If your annual cost for rent is $1,200,000, and you propose to drop days in the office by 40% - and you state that over time, that equates into an opportunity not just offer remote work as a recruiting advantage, but as a financial advantage that could deliver $480,000 in savings.

Some of you will say your lease has 5 years to run. That's what subleases are for, Sparky. Some of you will say the owner/founder of your business owns the building. Sounds like a sweet deal for Tommy. You can still sublease, my friend. If you sublease the space you don't need at $12 per square foot, you're looking at $240,000 in annual savings in the example above.

And of course, if your lease and your agreement is up for renewal or will be in the next year, you should do this math quickly and make your recommendation.

THE WORLD OF WORK WILL CHANGE due to the Shelter in Place lockdown we experienced via COVID-19. It just won't go 100% remote.

Grab this opportunity as an HR Leader and make your recommendation for remote work. Regardless of your current position as a company, more remote work is a recruiting advantage - and a financial one as well.


COVID-19: It's Probably Time You Doubled Down Professionally On You...

Here we are - calendar dates vary widely, but by mid week, I'll be entering week 4 of my personal decision to shelter in place. I say personal decision because like a lot of states, mine was a bit late to the whole "mandate" thing.

COVID-19 sucks. I hope you're healthy. If you're not or you're taking care of people who aren't healthy, Hader godspeed to you.  

With that in mind, I'm going to switch gears and talk about everybody else. If you're still employed as a white collar professional, you fall into one of 2 camps regardless of the industry or your profession (HR and recruiting pros aren't exempt from what I'm about to say):

1--You've got a lot to do. Based on the circumstances and your company, your hair is on fire and you're working long hours with no breaks. Thank you. Nice job.

2--You don't have a lot to do. Many of you will refuse to put yourself in this category, mostly because it's dangerous thing to admit to yourself - and it comes with current and future responsibilities. But for any business with declining results, no one buying and an employer fortunate enough financially to retain you - many of you are in this group.

If you fall into group #2, this post is for you. I write it out of respect, with compassion, etc - but mostly to give you some tough love.

So you're still employed as a white collar professional and you don't have as much to do. You've probably got at least another month at home and some hours to fill.

Stop reading the news, get off your a**, out of the fetal position and use the hours you have - as well as the relative peace - and invest in you.

Get busy building the projects, work product or skills you always said you would do/chase if you weren't so busy.

The next month is a tale of two professionals in your industry/at your career level. You both have the same educational background, relative skills and career attainment at this stage in your career.

One of you is going to stay in the fetal position over the next 3 months (regardless of when you return to the office, things are going to stay slow, I'm calling it a minimum of 3 months, more likely 6), talking about how bad everything is, bitching about their 401k, etc.

The other one? That person is less available on demand to hop on a social Zoom call or a Slack/Glip/Whatever chat like everyone else.

The reason that other person is a bit less available? Because they're in the lab, taking blocks of time to work on the aforementioned projects, work product or skills that will add value to their company or themselves after this thing ends and the economy recovers.

The person in the lab becomes at least 5% more valuable to their company and the marketplace at the end of this 3-month period.

COVID-19 and what it's done to the world is awful. Most of us have some form of fear on a variety of levels. Take care of yourself and others, enjoy some time being physically close and present to your family, and meditate a bit.

But if you have down periods at work, It's time to flip the switch. Start planning and working for the June 1st or September 1st version of you.

Being 5%-10% better than your peers might make all the difference in the world over the 12 months - for you and your company.

Stay healthy. Do you.