The State of the Workplace (S.T.O.W.)

Ryan's weekly wave

This week in the ‘Deep Dive Careers Weekly Wave’ Newsletter, SHRM releases its State of the Workplace report, manners and decency at work yields power, and U.S. colleges continue to over promise and under deliver.


The Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM) has released their annual report on workplace trends. 

Read more about these findings in the Deep Dive Section.

In the News

‘Fair Chance’ Hiring: The movement to hire the formerly incarcerated continues to gain steam. (WSJ Business – Free read)

What’s Your Fantasy: Researchers analyzed the search terms: “how to be a _____” to determine the top 20 dream jobs. The winner may surprise you. (Remitly)

Become a superstar: Demonstrating manners and common sense may be enough to put you in the top tier of promotable employees. (Wall Street Journal)

Other News

An emerging mismatch between the supply and demand of remote work has accelerated. (Chartr)

Unsurprisingly, Wednesday is the most popular day for employees to work from the office. Monday and Friday are not… and by a wide margin. (Business Plus)

A Deeper Dive – The State of the Workplace

The survey of HR professionals and employees, conducted by SHRM, cited concerns about inflation, worsening mental health conditions, and reversing lackluster employee engagement as the leading trends. Here are some of the key findings:

  • 80% of HR Professionals worry about the economic situation and 86% are concerned about how it could negatively impact employee’s lives.
  • 48% are concerned about budget cuts.
  • 46% of employees surveyed would recommend their employer as a great workplace.
  • 56% of remote and hybrid employees would recommend their organization as a great place to work, compared to 44% of those who work in-person.
State of the workplace.

Despite the concerns from the HR community and the onslaught of negative press coverage about the economy, hiring numbers remain strong. (NPR) One particular piece of data from SHRM reflects this under-reported optimism with 74% of HR professionals expecting hiring to continue to increase in 2023.

What I’m Reading

Whale Done: The Power of Positive Relationships – Ken Blanchard

This book could be summarized as one big dad joke. Perhaps this is why I enjoyed it so much. Written, in a story format, the message is beautifully simple and profound. According to the author, habits of positive reinforcement train the whales at Sea World in San Diego just as effectively as they can train your family, friends, and colleagues. The next time you see someone do something nice, make sure to give them a big, “whale done!” 

If you’re extra ambitious, you can do what the sales manager Wesley did and give them a toy whale to really drive the point home.

Quote to Consider

“The Perfect Way is only difficult for those who pick and choose. Do not like, do not dislike; all will then be clear. Make a hairbreadth difference, and Heaven and Earth are set apart. If you want the truth to stand clear before you, never be for or against. The struggle between ‘for’ and ‘against’ is the mind’s worst disease”

― Jianzhi Sengcan

Articles of the Week

29% of Americans expect to become millionaires, yet only about 5% actually do. What’s up with that? (GoBankingRates)

The top 12 lessons on life from the classic book, “Rich Dad, Poor Dad.” (Jennifer Thompson – Medium)

One of the main reasons that college exists is to teach young people how to think critically and communicate professionally. Yet, employers are finding that recent graduates lack critical thinking and communication skills. (Chronicle of Higher Education)


Conservative activist and former Georgetown professor Ilya Shapiro is interviewed by the Chronicle of Higher Education on why current higher education diversity initiatives in their current form, are illiberal and should be disbanded. 

Deep Dive Careers Post of the Week: Buyer Beware: Does College Really Align with Your Goals?

Colleges are revered as the gatekeepers to a middle class lifestyle. Yet as degrees become more commonplace, a more critical look may show that college degrees are unnecessary for broad swaths of Americans.

Other Fun Stuff

Despite its significant decline in television ratings this year, the annual Presidential State of the Union Address attracts lots of viewers. (The Hill) (Statista)

  • President Biden’s speech reached 27.3 million people. (NBC News)
  • In 1993, then President Bill Clinton’s address reached 66.9 million people.
  • In 2018, then President Donald Trump’s address reached 45.9 million. 

Dad Joke of the Week:

Child says:

~ “Dad, my food tastes a little funny.” ~

Dada says:

~ “Then why aren’t you laughing?!” ~

Thanks for reading. I’ll catch you next week.

Be well,


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