A Beatnik Poet and Disruptive HR

IMG_20150413_143824Hark for Spring Forum Comes!

The last Fall Forum has faded into distant memory.

Behold, ahead looms the Spring Edition!

To hold or not to hold, that was the question.

Whether to half the ill we bore,

Or to proceed against the mighty tide.

As day one dawns clear and bright.

Into Lean and the Value Streams,

We unflinching will plunge.

Our hearts aflame with continuous improvement,

Screaming forth from our lungs.

Where PDCA’s, 8 forms of waste to eliminate,

Root cause analysis and 5 why’s are sung!

Then, wearily we will then rest from our labors and dine.

A few moments of respite, too renew our laden spirits.

For soon our fury builds in a brainstorming burn,

Popping the corn, where no problem is a problem.

That may not be to easily solved.

We will build on flows of thought and,

Simple techniques to navigate the value streams.

And as day falls into night to cover the lands,

Our minds clamor for rest from our labors.

For upon the morrow further into the depths we must go.

A litany of voices beckon us forward,

“Respect”, “Professionalism”, “Integrity” and “Accountability”

Their cries will not be silenced by the challenges ahead, for…

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” ~Theodore Roosevelt, April 23, 1910

So we wake to day two, alas ready for more.

Learning to speak the truth with compassion and trust,

Casting aside the injuries we so easily believe,

The slings and arrows are not always what we perceive.

For well-intentioned the words and actions may be,

Their message is often shrouded in mystery.

Again we wearily shelter in the refuge,

Of friendly banter while breaking bread together.

We see the end that draws near, to quit now would undo

Our hard earned progress.

In the heart of struggle comes laughter from minds bonded,

Standing up in one economy of purpose.

To regulate or not to regulate is sometimes the question.

How much and how often, are the details that we scrutinize.

Our relevant mission, to ensure the services needed by all,

Are fair in worth, readily accessible, dependable and safe.

For our leaders do valiantly strive to promote the greater good.

The minds of those entrusted with the mantle of authority,

Who wield this power with justice and mercy.

Come before them now and ask what you will,

For to speak in the face of fear is the truest measure of courage.

For now, having reached the end, o’ the steps still to be taken.

For the journey goes ever on and on.

As Spring Forum begins its descent, the stories and legends hence,

Over cubicle walls will be told.

Yet, the spring breezes fade into the heat of summer,

Before drifting into the days of autumn,

And another Fall Forum will be upon us once again.

===========================
To provide some context to this post, my HR staff is responsible for hosting two day training events each spring and fall for all employees of our organization. The poem above was written and read by me in a live show of “performance art” at an all staff meeting one week prior to the training event. It was also accompanied by slides showcasing the two day agenda of classes. You kinda had to be there for the full effect!

I love it when my creative side overlaps into my day job. And yes the picture is how I dressed for the performance. I am not your typical HR Director and I believe in Disruptive HR and Leadership, it keeps people on their toes. 😉  What do you think?

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