Moving Nevada Forward

in support of higher education

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All I Really Need To Know About the Workplace I Learned In Kindergarten

A key component of the HR function is employee relations.  It has been said it is one of the core competencies for all HR professionals.  I am sure there are hundreds of books, webinars, and lectures on the topic.  It never ceases to amaze me just how complicated this subject can get with complaints, grievances, posters, lawyers, training, the equal opportunity commission, affirmative action and the list goes on. Perhaps we are over complicating things.  If we spend one-third of our lives at work-don’t we want it to be happy?  Isn’t about taking responsibility for our actions and being good citizens?

Are you a good citizen at work?  Here are some simple reminders from one of my favorite poems by Robert Fulghum, (chock full of sage old advice), “All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten.


Kingergarten (Photo credit: courosa)

Most of what I really need to know about how to live and what to do and how to be in the workplace I learned in kindergarten.

Wisdom was not at the top of the graduate school mountain, but there in the sandpile at Sunday school.

Wouldn’t the workplace would be a much brighter place if we could all just remember these 16 tips?

Here are some things I learned about how to be a good employee and thrive in the workplace:

  1.  Share everything. We all have to play in the same sandbox–can’t we all just get along?
  2. Don’t hit people.  The workplace is no place for bullies.  Don’t do it.  Please call in sick or find another job.
  3. Put things back where you found them.  Yes, your mother was right.  It is about respect.
  4. Clean up your own mess.  Please spare me the emails.  Just clean it up!
  5. Don’t take things that aren’t yours.  Integrity.  (This includes other people’s jobs.)
  6. Say you’re sorry when you hurt somebody.  Mind your manners and remember to say thank you and sorry!
  7. Wash your hands before returning to work.  Don’t wait for the sign as a reminder as you go out the door.
  8. Flush.  Need I say more?  (It is about out with bad in with the new.)
  9. Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.  And good for your colleagues too.  Bring enough to share.
  10. Live a balanced lifeMental, spiritual, physical, emotional wellness for the common good.
  11. Learn some and think someEmployee engagement.  There is no such thing as a dumb question.
  12. And draw and paint; sing and dance and play; work some everyday. Work hard.  Play hard.  Take your much needed breaks and lunches for some R & R.
  13. Take a nap every afternoon.  (In your car of course)
  14. But most importantly when you go out into the world watch out for traffic.
  15. Hold hands and stick together.
  16. Be aware of wonder.

I love it!  Even in the workplace we have so much to learn from children.  Find your passion and take responsibility for your own happiness.

What can you do to be a better citizen at work?

What have you done today to be aware of the wonder?   Have you learned something new lately?  Do you say please, thank you, and I am sorry?  Do you work hard?  Live a balanced life?  Remember to draw, paint, sing and play at recess.  Let’s hold hands and stick together.

I think it is time I deliver some cookies and milk.

Milk and Cookies

Milk and Cookies (Photo credit: Cook Jones)