Put yourself in her shoes for a moment …

75% of men “believe that teams with significant numbers of women perform more successfully”, which may surprise female readers who had anticipated that a larger percentage of men remained in denial. Their pleasure might falter, however, when they learn that only 19% of men thought that reaching the top level of organisations is harder for women.

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#ouch – or when to think before opening the door

For individuals in their daily lives, the worst outcome is usually not as hideous as it might be: while we might find ourselves weeping into a ludicrously over-catered buffet while our ‘friends’ wash their hair or text flimsy excuses for their absence, our audience is normally restricted to our nearest and dearest. (Although these might not be the comparative adjectives we feel like using about them at the time.) For an organisation, attempting ‘open house’ on a medium like Twitter is a rather different matter. Despite the lack of catering, there is considerably more scope for ‘egg on face’ moments and for them to be conducted with the blinds open and the neighbourhood's cameras focused on you.

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Not on your own shoes, please …

The harder challenge, perhaps, is to identify when it is us that are being unreasonable, and starting on a journey that may well end in conflict. Stark questions-to-self along the lines of “Have you remembered where your salary comes from?” are much clearer and easier to answer than “Is my opposition or antipathy to this issue ultimately constructive?” or “For my own longer-term satisfaction, might I do well to consider starting to plan either a change of position or a change of behaviour?” Organisations find it difficult to notice and monitor the early signs of possible dis-engagement, and their eyes are on the larger agenda: individuals are likely to find this harder.

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Challenging or Competing? Taking issue with Gavin Kilduff

By its very nature, the whole concept of ‘fierce rivals’ implies an absence of loyalty, other than to the notion of defeating your opponent at any cost. Having constant competition (albeit that it is not quite synonymous with rivalry) could foster greater in-group cohesion if the group has collectively bought into the notion that they are competing intentionally and that a collective benefit can be gained (ie they relish the competition). The critical difference is of intention.

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Generations at work: The other ‘squeezed middle’

Barclays Bank recently commissioned research into the appeal of benefits packages offered by employers to different generational groupings within the workforce. Someone with a keen interest in pop culture – albeit not very recent pop culture – may have chosen the report’s title: Talking About My Generation. Looking at coverage of the report since its publication, other Who singles might have spoken more clearly about the findings: I’m thinking, for example, about The Seeker, Let’s See Action or the inevitable Won’t Get Fooled Again.

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Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit; wisdom is knowing not to put it in a fruit salad.

Understand what a psychometric is meant to do before you use it and don’t assume that one will work in all situations. In the same way that you would go to your doctor or chemist to know what medication to take for your ailments, you should see expert advice from practitioners who know the different tools and how they should be used properly.

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It’s not just HR then?

HR is a profession increasingly berated for not maturing, not moving on from its roots and embracing an adult role. Banking remains the bad boy, post 2008, and will doubtless linger there for a few years yet, while IT has been forgiven for the dot com crash a few years earlier. Let’s hope for the investors’ sake that that particular piece of history does not repeat itself: the scale of disaster may have been smaller, but a lot of people still lost a lot of money. And nowadays, a lot of us have less left to lose.

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