While I don’t put Perez Hilton in the same category as Newsweek or Fortune, the sentiment is running all over the internet. But different salaries don’t mean illegal discrimination. They mean different people. Replacing one CEO with another isn’t like replacing one cashier with another. They are substantially different people with substantially different backgrounds and taking on substantially different jobs. Which means the salaries shouldn’t be the same.
[Company] CEO, [Man], is joining the nation in solidarity of women’s rights and values by giving his female employees paid time off March 8th. With nearly 35 percent of his company’s positions held by women – including a majority of the executive seats and almost the entire PR department – much of the site’s operations will shut down for the day.
Does anyone see a problem with that? Alkon did, and she emailed back to ask for clarification:
Alkon: So, men have to work and only women get the day off?
PR person: Yes. Women across the country are participating in a national day of strike (called “A Day Without Women”) on International Women’s Day as a way of showing how important women are in the workplace. [Company] CEO supports this movement and has encouraged any women in the office who wish to participate to do so.
Alkon: “yes” meaning that men have to work while women get the day off?
But there is a downside. For instance, knowing who is giving the praise. The WSJ writes:
In most cases, bosses and other co-workers using HeyTaco, Growbot or similar tools can see who’s praising whom; leaderboards show who’s getting the most shout-outs; and often points are tallied that can be traded in for rewards like gift cards or time off.
While this can be good for managers when performance appraisal time rolls around, it can cause problems as well. For instance, let’s talk about bullying.
Wouldn’t it be awesome if when you were 18 you could sit down with a counselor who could help you plan out your career and then you’d just follow that path? “So, when you’re 22 you’ll take an entry level job as a marketing assistant. At 24, you’ll be promoted to an analyst position….by the time you’re 35, you’ll be a director!”
Ha, no. That’s not how it works. While some companies have programs to help you with growth, career growth is really up to you. If you want to grow and be promoted or learn new things, you need to take charge.
It’s time for a guest appearance at Stacking Benjamins. The focus of the show is on ETFs, but my segment is about when you should take a pay cut. The whole thing is a good listen, but the best part is the very last minute.
Forget these lists. They are not the way to financial independence. Let’s look at the numbers. These are median salaries, so 50 percent of people make more and 50 percent make less.
Pharmacy manager $149,064
Patent attorney $139,272
Medical science liaison $132,842
Those salaries look pretty good, but not a single one of them will put you into the top 1 percent. What is the top 1 percent in the US? $434,682 or around that and $214,462 to crack the top 5 percent. Not even the average physician cracks the top 5 percent–and keep in mind it takes years and years of school and training to get that job. Those years are when you’re not earning or saving or investing anything.
Yesterday, in most of North America, people lost an hour of their time. Unless you’re a person who goes to church or work on Sunday, the time change didn’t really hit you until you woke up this morning. Or, rather tried to wake up, because it’s freaking early.
hat’s a huge increase, and a dangerous one. If you can at all avoid being on the road today, avoid it. Or at least go in late after everyone’s woken up. If you can’t avoid it, here are some suggestions to keep yourself safe on the road.
Shine some light in your face.
It may be quite dark when you wake up and leave the house. That doesn’t help you stay awake. WebMD suggests light and lots of it. The light will help convince your body it’s time to be awake.
Fasnacht is the German/Swiss equivalent of Mardi Gras. It’s supposed to be a big party before Lent begins. However, Basel has their Fasnacht the week after Ash Wednesday. And what a party it is. 3 full days and by full days I mean full days. It begins with Morgenstreich at 4:00 am on Monday and ends at 4:00 am on Thursday. If you live in the city, on the parade route, and don’t like constant noise and confetti (Swiss German word: Räpelli), then you’re advised to get out of town. The (questionable) earliest event was in 1356, with the official beginnings in 1529. I can’t wait until the 500th celebration in 12 years.
Many towns have a Fasnacht celebration, but Basel’s is the biggest and the latest. And it brings up a question: Why celebrate Fasnacht after Ash Wednesday? Well, I’ll tell you. Please note, I am not a historian and I’ve put this together after living here for 8 years and so there may be some errors. Forgive me.
Each Swiss Canton is either officially Protestant or Catholic (except for Geneva and Neuchatel). Basel is Protestant, but it used to be Catholic. The Catholics had this great Fasnacht tradition and when the Protestants took over they wanted to keep the party, but they certainly didn’t want the Catholics to participate. So, what to do, what to do…
The easy solution was to move the party to after Ash Wednesday when the Catholics would be in Lent and really shouldn’t be at a big, 3 day party, that involves a lot of alcohol. So, that’s why Basel celebrates so late. It’s all to keep the Catholics away.
How true that is, I don’t know, but it makes sense! Of course, today’s Catholics don’t tend to be quite so strict about Lent and I’m sure they are all participating.
Anyway, here’s how the party goes down.
At 4:00 am on Monday, the entire city goes dark. If you leave on a light, expect to have your window smashed. When everything is dark the flutes begin to play and “Cliques” (local clubs) begin marching with huge lanterns.
These are amazing lanterns: large and heavy. There is usually a team of men–4 or more–who carry these through the city.
Later on Monday, the Cortege (Parade) begins. The Lanterns are brought along with Guggimusik, which is pretty awful music. But, it’s supposed to be awful–they play off key on purpose. (Or so they say.) Most Guggimusik groups are only piccolos and drums, but some have full bands.
Everyone is in full costume with masks. It’s quite spectacular, if painful on the ears.
In addition to the music, there are the Waggis. Waggis ride around in wagons and throw candy, confetti, oranges, onions and flowers into the crowd. Little kids and cute girls are the recipients of the most goodies.
If you’re unlucky, you might get a ton of confetti dumped directly over your head. If you’re super lucky and you might get a beer can (unopened!) tossed your direction. Everyone, children and adults alike, beg the Waggis for their treats. If you’re not wearing a Fasnacht Blaggede, though, you probably won’t get anything but onions and confetti dumped over your head.
Each year has its own Blaggedde. You buy one and wear it on your coat to show you support Fasnacht and that you are helping to cover the costs. Some of the money goes to the town for clean up and such, and the rest goes to the Cliques. You can buy them on the street anytime from January, up to the end of Fasnacht.
And why is the clean up such a big deal? Well, confetti.
There are literally tons of confetti thrown every day of Fasnacht. If you go to a parade you’ll come home with confetti in your hair, your coat pockets, and your underpants. You will pull out your coat next winter–the coat you had dry cleaned and put away for summer–and you will stick your hand in your pocket and find some leftover confetti. It is everywhere. You can’t avoid it. But, being Switzerland, every night, bulldozers go through town to clean up the confetti. Then it begins again the next day.
It is also only sold in single color bags. It’s illegal to sell or throw mixed confetti. This keeps people from picking up gross confetti off the ground and throwing it, although kids are known to do so.
So, that’s what my neighboring town has been up to. The little suburb I live in doesn’t really do Fasnacht. They do have a children’s parade (prior to Ash Wednesday), but nothing major. We’re just a 10 minute tram ride into Basel, though, so no need to have our own party when we can borrow someone else’s.
Political Scientist Robert E. Kelly was live, on the air, from his home, when his kids decided to see what dad was up too. What ensued is this hilarious clip with poor Dr. Kelly trying to talk about the very serious impeachment of South Korean President Park Geun-hye.
First, the older daughter comes in, then the baby, and finally, a frantic mother trying to get the kids out.
I can relate. My kids are older (youngest is eight), but my eight year old snuggled up next to me while I was recording the Stacking Benjamin’s Podcast and started reading out loud in a loud whisper. Fortunately, we weren’t live, so host Joe Saul-Sehy can edit it. After I got him to leave, he decided that minute would be an excellent time to chop wood. Ahh, the joy of children, bang! bang! bang! (My kids have vacation this week. I do not.)
Do you want to work for a great company? Or maybe you already work for one of these fantastic companies. Every year Fortune surveys companies and their employees (this is important), crunches the numbers and comes up with the best companies to work for. They released the complete list of the 100 Best Companies to Work for and while a lot is what you expect–Google is number 1 for the 8th time in 11 years, there are some newcomers to the list as well. Here are the top 10:
All HR people are evil, it's in our job description. Or at least, that seems to be the prevailing theory. In reality, there's just more going on behind the scenes than most people know. I'm here to demystify your Human Resources department and tell you just why you worked your tail end off all year and still got a 1.7 percent bonus.
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E-mail me!. Unfortunately, I can't answer every question, but I do try to do as many as I can. To increase your chances of getting your question answered, please limit yourself to two-three reasonably sized paragraphs and try to figure out what your real problem is. Punctuation and capitalization are pluses.