Glassdoor’s Top 20 Employee Perks

by Evil HR Lady on February 8, 2017

Glassdoor pulled together a list of some pretty great perks. They describe these perks as going “beyond the basics” and entering “legendary status.” While I’m not quite sure all of these reach legendary status, I will say that most are pretty awesome.

1. IKEA offers up to four months of paid parental leave to both part-time and full-time employees with at least one year of experience at the company, regardless of whether they work at a retail store or the corporate headquarters.

Why this is “legendary”: The thing I like most about this perk is that it hits two neglected categories–part-time employees and retail employees. Lots of times big companies announce major perks but limit those perks to the highest paid people. Happy to see part-time and retail employees getting a great perk.

2. Reebok encourages employees to reach their personal fitness goals by providing an on-site gym with Crossfit classes.

Why this is “legendary”: Gyms are common. Crossfit is unique. Plus, it fits with the overall company culture and product lines.

To keep reading, click here: Glassdoor’s Top 20 Employee Perks


Women earn $0.79 for every $1.00 men earn, but Snapchat co-founder Even Spiegel earned $2 for every $1 his co-founder Bobby Murphy made. Where is the pay inequity?

What if I said, nowhere? Now, we’re going to keep this discussion to the United States only, in case you are itching to trot out statistics from Kazakhstan or Sweden. Let’s start with Audi’s ridiculous Super Bowl ad.

If you don’t want to watch, the text begins with a dad (apparently a dad who never once read a parenting book or listened to his own parents) who says, “What do I tell my daughter?” He then goes on to say all these horrible things about how she’ll be treated poorly because of her gender. “Do I tell her that her grandpa is worth more than her grandma?” and “Do I tell her that despite her education, her skills, her intelligence, she will automatically be valued as less than every man she ever meets?”

Goodness, no, dad. What kind of a parent sets out to tell his child that she’ll be an utter failure? Oh wait, that’s not the point. The point is the pay gap.

To keep reading, click here: What Audi’s Super Bowl Ad and Snapchat’s IPO Have in Common


Swiss Saturday: Cultural Similarities

by Evil HR Lady on February 4, 2017

I’ve kind of gained this perception that all Swiss parents are better parents than I am. Now, logically, I know there are some pretty rotten Swiss parents, but since my son’s teachers are always lecturing me on how disorganized my son is (sorry kid), and how his handwriting is atrocious (sorry kid), and I don’t know special Swiss things like there’s a special pen called a “Tintenroller” that he absolutely, positively has to have but no one tells me about, I can sometimes feel like all other parents have this parenting thing down pat.

So, when the school held a parents meeting to discuss how to help our children learn, I only signed up because I wanted a checkmark next to my name in the “good parent” category. I really had no desire to go and listen to other parents fret over the struggles of neurotic children whose biggest concern is making their folders pretty and organized. (My son’s homework this week–make your folder prettier. Not joking here.)

But, off I went. And you know what I found out? My perceptions were not reality. It seemed everyone had stories about children who won’t do homework, clean their rooms, or be generally obedient. The speaker, who is a “learn coach,” said that if you spend 10 minutes arguing with your children and end up swearing at them before they actually start their homework, you should just skip the argument part and go straight to the swearing at them. I’m pretty sure she was joking.  Pretty sure. Everyone laughed, anyway.

And I kind of had this sobering realization that kids really are the same. Sure, I don’t know the secrets of magical Swiss pens, but I’m not the only parent that hates homework. I’d been viewing my fellow parents through sort of a “Pinterest” lens. You know, where you only see the amazing successes and not the hours of failure? Of course, when I spoke with the teachers they never said, “Offspring 2 needs to improve in A, B, and C, just like every other kid in the class.” I don’t see other kids’ grades, and I’m not in their houses when their kids do homework.

It reminded me of this Danish video about how we are more alike than different. Sure, there are tons of differences between my American family and the Swiss families, but I’m 100 percent sure there are multiple people at that school who are super jealous of my ability to make chocolate chip cookies. Because, while the Swiss might be good at chocolate and cheese, they stink at baked goods. I bring chocolate chip cookies to all school potluck functions and they are always the first thing gone. Yeah, we Americans know junk food.



HR has a bad reputation. (See title of Blog.) But there are lots of things your human resources department can help you with. Some of these you may know about and some of them might be surprises to you.

Even bad HR people should be able to help you with some of these things, and great HR departments (they do exist! I’ve been in several!) will really be helpful.

To read all about it, click here: 10 Things HR Departments Can Do For Employees

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My son was a baby when our family moved to Switzerland. If you have any stereotypes of the Swiss in your head, it’s probably that they are clean and orderly. This stereotype overwhelmingly plays out. For example, the street cleaner truck goes down my suburban street every week. If someone spray paints graffiti at the tram stop (my favorite was a group that used to go around spray painting their zip code with a stencil), it will be cleaned and gone in less than 24 hours. And crossing the street? You never, ever, go against the light. I have seen people stand at perfectly clear streets, while they wait for the light to change, even if it means missing their bus.

When my son was three, we took a trip to Italy. While Italy has better food than the Swiss, they don’t believe in cleanliness the way the Swiss do, nor are traffic lights any more than suggestions for pedestrians. While walking down the street in Milan, he turned to me and said, rather indignantly “Somebody needs to clean this place up!” Then he absolutely, positively refused to cross the light when there was a “red man” instead of a “green man” on the sign. While everyone else crossed, he and I stood and waited for the light to change. People looked at us like we were weirdos.

To keep reading, click here: Is Your International Travel Destroying Your Moral Compass?


LinkedIn’s Best Jobs for 2017

by Evil HR Lady on January 31, 2017

Wouldn’t you like a job that has potential? Where you can earn great money and have the promise of promotion in years to come? LinkedIn crunched their data and came up with the Most Promising Jobs of 2017.

LinkedIn looked at their member data to not only find the jobs that are likely to lead career growth but found the skills you’d need to be successful in each one. So, they’ll tell you not only which jobs are best, but what you need to do to get one of these jobs.

Here’s how to read the info:

Salary: annual pay

Career advancement score: This is based on the percentage of people who changed jobs within the same company during 2016.

Job Openings (YoY growth): The first number is the current number of jobs open in each position. The YoY growth is the percent change from 2015 to 2016.

Here are the top 10.

To read the top 10, click here: LinkedIn’s Best Jobs for 2017


Is the EEOC Backing Out of an LGBTQ Lawsuit?

by Evil HR Lady on January 30, 2017

In 2014, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) took on the case of Aimee (formerly Anthony) Stephens, who R.G. &. G.R. Harris Funeral Homes fired after Stephens announced that he would be transitioning to she. The funeral home had a dress code that required women to wear “skirt-suits”, and Stephens announced that after she returned from vacation, she would be switching to female clothes.

Stephens’ case was thrown out of court in 2016. The court ruled that Stephens didn’t a claim because “like sexual orientation, transgender or transsexual status is currently not a protected class under Title VII.” The court also relied on the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA), because the funeral home owner, Thomas Rost, was entitled to his religious liberty, and Stephen’s transition violated that.

The Washington Post quoted EEOC spokesman Justine Lisser as saying “We are disappointed with the decision and are reviewing the next steps.” Those next steps involved appealing the decision.

To keep reading, click here: Is the EEOC Backing Out of an LGBTQ Lawsuit?


Can Your Boss Force You to Wear High Heels?

by Evil HR Lady on January 27, 2017

Just what is a formal professional dress code? For men, it’s always easy: Dark suit, white or blue shirt, a tie, and dark shoes and socks. For women? Not so much. Can you wear pants? How short of a skirt is too short? Do you need a jacket? Is a nice cardigan the equivalent of a suit coat?

And let’s talk about shoes. Flats? Heels? Open-toed okay? Sandals? What about nylons? And are tights the same as nylons and what about bare legs?

Companies disagree on these things and one woman, Nicola Thorpe, found herself sent home from a London office of PwC for not wearing two to four-inch heels. Her job involved a lot of walking around the office and she, understandably, didn’t want to wear heels. Thorpe was a temp working directly for Portico, who had and enforced the rule. It wasn’t a PwC rule.

To keep reading, click here: Can Your Boss Force You to Wear High Heels?


How To Explain a Short Term Job

by Evil HR Lady on January 26, 2017

Have you ever taken a new job only to find out that it was a disaster? Sometimes this is because it’s just not a good fit. Sometimes the hiring manager lied to you about the job. (Surprisingly, hiring managers do this all the time–they’ll play up a job and promise candidates the world, then when the person starts, reality comes out.) If you just can’t stand it anymore how do you explain your three-month stint as a Marketing Director in a job interview? And how do you explain that you quit without a new job lined up? (If that’s the case.) Here are some suggestions.

Think About Your Job History

If you have a solid job history, having one short job shouldn’t be too much of a problem. If you were at your last job for five years, and the previous one for three, saying, “I thought this would be a great opportunity to do X, but two weeks after I started that project was canceled and my boss assigned me to do Y, which I had no interest in doing.” Or “In the job interview, I was promised the ability to work from home two days a week. That was revoked as soon as I started.”

To keep reading, click here: How To Explain a Short Term Job


Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney signed a bill on Monday that prohibits employers from asking candidates about their salary history. Like the Massachusetts bill that passed this summer (but won’t go into effect until January 1, 2018), the goal is to help end gender pay discrimination.

The theory is that since women tend to have lower salaries than men, and since many businesses make their current salary offer based on previous salaries, one underpaid job in 1992 can affect you the rest of your life. By prohibiting employers from asking about your salary history, hiring managers will have to make a salary offer based on market data and won’t be influenced by a low previous salary.

I’m not a fan of government regulations, but I like the idea behind these laws. Businesses should be looking at market data. They should be the ones to say, “this job pays $X per year, are you interested?” I don’t think this will solve all problems, but I do think it will help. However, Wharton Professor Peter Capelli thinks it could backfire and hurt the people it’s claiming to help.

To keep reading, click here: Philadelphia Joins Massachusetts in Making Salary History Questions Illegal