Happy Mother’s Day!

Mother. Mom. Mama. Mommy. Matushka. Madre. Mutter.

To those of you with a mother:

Whether your relationship with your mother is solid or borderline depressing, Mother’s Day is the perfect opportunity to stop and reflect on the women who made you the person you are today. Their paths may not always reflect your own path, but that doesn’t mean they didn’t pave the road that made the most sense to them at any given time in their lives.

Those women may be your mom, your grandma, your aunt, your sister, your best friends’ mom, or the neighbor lady who always made sure you had food in your belly or shoes on your feet as you spent your summers roaming around the neighborhood. If you’re really lucky, it’s all of those ladies.

As you reflect, consider picking up the phone and letting them know what a difference they’ve made. I promise you won’t regret it.

To those of you that are a mother or dream of being a mother:

Whether you’ve been a mother for decades, are celebrating your first Mother’s Day with your little one, or have wished for years that your struggles to conceive were just an awful nightmare – I hope you realize what a difference you have made in the lives of those who look to you for wisdom, for a shoulder to cry on, for a goofy face to make them smile, for a hug to lean into, or simply for an excuse to hear they are loved.

To those of you who have had to say good-bye to your mother recently:

I can only imagine Mother’s Day after your mother is gone is a hard pill to swallow; a date on the calendar that you dread because you don’t know how you’ll feel but you know it’s not going to be good. I hope you take Mother’s Day as an opportunity to thank your mother still for all that she did for you, for raising you to be the person you are today, and for the blessing THAT bestowed on the people YOU love.

 

Happy Mother’s Day!

 

About the Author

Beth B.

Beth Bangtson, HR Manager

Stress Awareness Month

I write this article under pressure: I returned from vacation recently and still feel like I’m playing catch-up. Poor me, I know. I have several deadlines looming and even this article was due yesterday. Nothing like last minute, right?

In recognition of Stress Awareness Month, I’m taking a minute to breathe and asking you to do the same. I mean really bbbbrreeeeeeaaattthhhheeee – not just a quick breath, but one of those deep, shoulder relaxing, cheeks puffed out, mind cleansing kind of breaths.

Unfortunately, for almost all of us, stress is a normal part of the human existence. It’s not a laughing matter and, if left unchecked, can lead to much bigger issues. According to an done in 2017, the most common sources of stress among Americans were:

  • The future of our nation – 63% respondents mentioned
  • Money – 62%
  • Work – 61%
  • Political climate – 57%
  • Violence/crime – 51%

Now, look at the past year and imagine how those numbers have changed. You’re stressing out about it yourself, aren’t you?

As a parent, it’s surprising to me how early stress sneaks its way into our life’s. While researching for this article, I was grateful to find that the advice I recently gave my 10-year-old is one of the most common suggestions for overcoming stress: recognize that you don’t have control and let it go. I know that’s easier said than done in a lot of situations, but consistently reminding yourself could go a long way to improving your stress levels.

I hope as you deal with the stressors in your life, you have a trusted friend, family member, or counselor you are comfortable speaking with. If you’re a PMG employee, know that you have access to our Employee Assistance Program – free access to counseling for anything that might be causing you stress (see your manager for details).

For more expert advice on coping with stress, check out the CDC’s website: https://www.cdc.gov/violenceprevention/about/copingwith-stresstips.html 

 

About the Author

Beth B.

Beth Bangtson, HR Manager

National Drug & Alcohol Facts Week

National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week, aimed at teenagers, started March 22. The goal of this week was to debunk the myths we hear so often about drug and alcohol use.

According to research from the Centers for Disease Control, two-thirds of U.S. students have tried alcohol by 12th grade. National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week attempts to inform teens about the impact and risk of substance abuse.

 

Test your knowledge about drugs and drug use by taking the interactive  2021 National Drug & Alcohol IQ Challenge quiz!

Quiz | NIDA for Teens (drugabuse.gov)

5 Signs of Teen Drug Abuse

Changes in Behavior

This can include anything from bad grades to lack of respect to poor eye contact. Take note of what is different in your teen and ask yourself if their behavior is unusual.

Psychological Changes

Drugs can have a heavy impact on your teen — from trouble concentrating to memory issues to seemingly random laughter.

Health Issues

Drug use often coincides with health issues. If your teen is experiencing appetite changes, shakiness, excessive headaches, or frequent illness — take note.

Personal Appearance

Look for changes in personal appearance (from bad hygiene to bloodshot eyes).  Another sign could be burn marks on fingers or lips.

Suspicious Behavior

You may notice drug paraphernalia, missing cash, or valuables. This could be a clear indication of drug use.

 

Want more safety-related topics? Check out our recent post on Poison Prevention!

 

About the Author

Brenda L

Brenda Lovitz, Risk & Safety Manager

Spring Break – Travel Outside the Box

The first day of spring was Sunday March 20th this year and with spring comes many things – birds chirping, snow melting, and spring break! As you likely know, spring break is the time when many individuals travel.

To help you out with your travels this year (and give you an opportunity to think and travel outside the box), we’ve created lists of places you should check out that are based on American manufacturing and industry. If you think the idea of traveling based on American revolution seems odd, think again. In this article about Industrial Tourism, you’ll find it’s not as uncommon as you may think!

As for our list, it includes places that are currently open during the pandemic and places that provide online options for anyone staying in.

General US Regions

The Rust Belt

This area is generally known as the area surrounding the great lakes like PA, MI, IN, WV, and OH. Natural resources in these areas such as coal and iron as well as rivers and trains for transportation greatly changed manufacturing in the early years. It’s a popular area for the production of automotive vehicles and parts, primary metal manufacturing, fabricated metals, food, chemical and paper.

California

This state is well known for its engineering and manufacturing of electronics and computers as well as production of chemical and petroleum products.

Texas

Texas is similar to California in that it’s a major supplier of chemicals, petroleum products, and computers. It’s also a major supplier of food and building supplies (brick & cement).

New England

This region led the way in the earlier industrial revolutions as immigrants traveled to America. These states (including MA, CT, and NH) are now powerhouses in electronic, appliance, and aerospace manufacturing.

Museums and Exhibits

American Precision Museum – Windsor, VT

This is “the dynamic store of machines and people which form the foundation and future of the manufacturing industry in America.”

Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation – Dearborn, MI

This museum is just one of many experiences on a 250-acre campus. You can also step into Greenfield Village to experience things like riding in a Model T, take a tour at the Ford Rouge Factory, and watch educational movies on a state-of-the-art (and very large) 4K digital projection screen.

Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory – Louisville, KY

Here you can learn about the makings of Louisville Slugger bats “from the forest to the field”.

Kregel Windmill Factory Museum – Nebraska City, NE

This is the original Kregel factory which produced windmills for 112 years straight and now houses all the artifacts and historical information for a critical technology long ago.

Baltimore Museum of Industry – Baltimore, MD

This museum spans across five acres of land to give you experiences and knowledge about Maryland’s industrial past and the ways it shaped their state and region.

Museum of History & Industry – Seattle, WA

This museum focuses on the ways in which the Puget Sound area has shaped inventive or industrial processes worldwide.

The Kazoo Factory – Beaufort, SC

After taking the fully-guided tour here, you’ll also have the opportunity to make your own Kazoo!

Minnesota Transportation Museum – St. Paul, MN

Don’t spend all of your time learning on vacation. At this museum, not only will you learn the ways trains changed American industry, but you can also ride in a historical train!

Heritage Center of Dayton Manufacturing & Entrepreneurship – Dayton, OH

On this 65 acre campus, you can learn all about Dayton’s mark on innovation and industrialization from 1840 to current day.

Lowell National Historical Park – Lowell, MA

Water-powered textile mills transformed America’s early industrial revolutions. At this national park, you will learn the stories of the people (many immigrant and many female) who worked in the mills.

Goodenough Silver Mine Underground Tour – Tombstone, AZ

Tombstone, Arizona had an incredibly large mining industry and this mine was the largest producer of silver.

Statues and Commemorative Memorials

The Hat Maker Statue – Danbury, CT

Located in the Hat City of the World!

Mechanics Monument – San Francisco, CA

This statue was erected for the workers at Union Iron Works, the first foundry built in California.

Rosie the Riveter Memorial – Richmond, CA

During World War II, Richmond, California shipyards produced more ships than any other shipyard. This park tells the story of WWII from the home front perspective.

Thomas Talbot Statue – Atlanta, GA

The founder and first president of the International Association of Machinists (IAM).

Brown Building – Manhattan, NY

This building is considered a National Historic Landmark and showcases a plaque to memorialize those lost in the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire. This fire changed the lives of many textile workers (and others) in the US.

Online Exhibitions, Videos, and Virtual Tours

National Museum of American History

This Smithsonian museum is currently closed but offers many online and virtual opportunities to learn about America’s industrial past including this one about Industrial Drawings and this one on Solar Power.

Tuesday Tech Talks

These are interesting (and short enough) YouTube videos from the Charles River Museum of Industry and Innovation in Waltham, Massachusetts.

Amazon Fulfillment Center Tour

In this virtual tour, you’ll get to see an Amazon fulfillment center with your own eyes.

Jet Propulsion Laboratory

In this virtual tour, you’ll get 3D access to Mission Control, Visitor Lobby Center and the Spacecraft Assembly Facility of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab.

Kregel Windmill Factory Museum

This is the original Kregel factory which produced windmills for 112 years straight, now housing all the artifacts and historical information for a critical technology long ago.

 

Want more manufacturing history? Check out our post on Inventors & Leaders – Black History Month.

 

Happy Travels!

 

About the Author

Kim M

Kim Mooney, Technical Manager & Coach

Employee Appreciation Day

We Appreciate YOU!

For the past 25 years, YOU have been celebrated on the first Friday in March, each year, but did you even realize this?

Employee Appreciation Day is Friday, March 5th this year and after the year we’ve all had, we wanted to make sure you were aware how much we appreciate you!

As leaders at PMG, we know how hard it is to find really great, high caliber employees who have the KSA’s (Knowledge, Skills, & Abilities) our clients need for us to help them get their incredibly important work done.

We hope you hear it often enough, but in case you don’t, please know that each and every day of the year, we are SO THANKFUL FOR WHO YOU ARE and what you bring to the work site every single day. We are thankful for the little glimpses you share with us of who you are and what you get out of being a PMG employee. YOU ARE PMG!

THANK YOU!
THANK YOU!
THANK YOU!

 

Inventors & Leaders – Black History Month

Inspirational Inventors & Leaders

Celebrating Americans Who’ve Greatly Impacted the Manufacturing Sector

There are many designs, inventions, and products that have forever changed, altered, and affected manufacturing over the years. Behind those inventions and products are hard-working, intelligent, and crafty makers. In addition to the maker, there are the executive leaders keeping the product rolling. With February being Black History Month, we wanted to showcase the talented and inspirational black inventors and leaders who’ve changed manufacturing with their work.

Charles Richard Patterson (1833 – 1910)

Charles was the founder of the first (and only) African American owned & operated automobile company, C.R. Patterson & Sons, which started as a carriage-making company.

Elijah J. McCoy (1844 – 1929)    

Elijah developed an automatic lubricator for oiling the steam engine parts of trains allowing trains to run for longer without having to stop. Other lubricators were developed in imitation but were never as good as Elijah McCoy’s. As a result, railway engineers requested “The Real McCoy” thus bringing to life the popular expression, which means “the real thing”!

Lewis Howard Latimer (1848 – 1928)

Lewis invented the carbon filament for incandescent lightbulbs, (1881) changing the course of electricity forever! He wrote the first book on electric lighting and also managed and supervised all public electric light installation in New York City, Philadelphia, Montreal, and London. Additionally, Lewis assisted in drafting the patent for Alexander Graham Bell’s invention: the telephone.  Other inventions of his include the first railroad car water closet (better known as toilet) in 1874 as well as the forerunner of air conditioners in 1886.

Jan Ernst Matzeliger (1852 – 1889)

Jan invented a shoe lasting machine which attached the shoe sole to its upper (called ‘lasting’) removing the requirement to do this by hand. This machine produced more than 10 times the amount shoemakers could produce by hand. Additionally, Jan consistently improved his invention until it could produce 700 pairs of shoes in one day.

George Washington Carver (1864 – 1943)

George developed numerous techniques to improve soils depleted by repeated plantings of cotton. He also founded an industrial research laboratory in which he developed and promoted products and applications to popularize alternative crops used in his crop rotation method. In doing so, he learned of a need to educate farmers at their homes and thus designed and created a mobile classroom!

Madame C.J. Walker (1867 – 1919)

After experiencing hair loss which no product on the market could correct, Madame C.J. invented a line of African American hair products in addition to the Madame C.J. Walker Laboratories for the manufacturing of these and other products/cosmetics. In addition to this, her company trained women as sales beauticians. In doing so, Madame C.J became one of the first self-made, American millionaire women!

Charles W. “C.W.” Chapelle (1872 – 1941)

Charles was the first head electrician of US Steel, the founder of African Union Company Inc. and an airplane enthusiast. He’s well known for designing an award-wining, long-distance airplane, being the only African American to display a plane at the 1911 First Industrial Airplane Show. In addition, Charles was the Vice President of the first African American airplane company!

Frederick McKinley Jones (1893 – 1961)

One of the very fun facts about Frederick is that he designed and built a race car that not only beat other automobiles in races, but also once beat an airplane! In addition to this feat, he designed a series of devices that allowed silent movie projectors to use talking movie stock. However, he’s best known for inventing the first automatic refrigeration system for long-haul trucks and railroad cars (mobile refrigeration units). These mobile refrigeration units led to the formation of Thermo-King Corp. and revolutionized the availability of fresh produce at anytime, anywhere.

Otis Frank Boykin (1920 – 1982)

Otis invented electrical resistor technology which is still, to this day, used in TVs, radios, computers, pacemakers, and guided missiles! Not only did this technology change electronics physically, but it also significantly reduced the cost of making the devices. In addition, Otis created the electrical capacitator, a burglar-proof cash register, and a chemical air filter.

Craig Arnold (1951 – )

Craig is currently the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Eaton Corporation. He previously held the title of Corporate Vice President and President for GE Lighting Services Ltd. and GE Plastics. He is a strong advocate of diversity, equality, and innovation in manufacturing, corporations, and executive leadership roles.

Marian Rogers Croak (1955 – )

Marian is the developer of Voice over Internet Protocol/IP (VoIP) – a method and group of technologies used to communicate through voice, fax, text, etc. over the Internet. This changed the way humans communicate forever! She is currently the Vice President for Engineering at Google.

Mark E. Dean (1957 – )

Mark has made many contributions over the year in the area of Computer Technology. He is a major contributor to the invention of the color PC monitor and the gigahertz chip. In fact, he holds three of the original nine IBM company patents. Additionally, Mark co-invented the Industry Standard Architecture System Bus which allows devices such as printers and monitors to be directly plugged into computers.

Alicia Boler Davis (1972 – )

Alicia is the first black woman to work as a Plant Manager for General Motors (GM). Over the years, she did many things at GM, including working as Executive Vice President of Global Manufacturing! In her 25 years at GM, she found herself not only managing factories, but also negotiating with unions, overseeing new car model development, and working through recalls. She is currently with Amazon as the first black woman in a Senior Vice President role.

Check out the following link to learn more about Black History Month, written by Daryl Michael Scott, a Professor of History at Howard University and the Vice President of Program at the Association for the Study of African American Life and History.

Want more history? Read our post on Women’s History Month!

 

About the Author

Picture of Kim Mooney

Kim Mooney, Technical Manager & Coach

National Tater Tot Day!

National Tater Tot Day – February 2nd

Is National Tater Tot Day a true holiday? A writer in Dallas, Texas, debunked the holiday in 2012 claiming it wasn’t a real holiday.

Can we be honest for a minute? Can we really consider any of these crazy national holidays as real holidays?

Whichever side of the dining room table you’re on, whether it’s a real holiday or not, I still want to pay homage to a Minnesota classic – Tater Tot Hotdish. Microsoft Word doesn’t recognize it as a real word but I promise you, Hotdish is a real word.

If you’re not from Minnesota or have never spent a significant amount of time there, you may be asking, “What in the world is Tater Tot Hotdish?” Let’s take a moment to introduce you to a simple recipe that brings back so many childhood memories for us natives:

The necessary ingredients:

Tater Tots

Did you know these were invented by Ore-Ida potatoes? Prior to tater tots, these magical little scraps from French fries were fed as scraps to the cow.

Ground Beef

We used ground turkey when I was a kid, but I make it with ground beef today.

Condensed Cream of Mushroom Soup

At my house, this is ALWAYS Campbell’s soup. You can’t use generic in Tater Tot Hotdish.

A can of French-cut green beans

(because we’re classy – none of those fancy fresh vegetables for this recipe)

Your veggie of choice may be different depending on what region of Minnesota you grew up in or what your parents preferred when you were a child. I’m from southwestern Minnesota and my husband grew up in southeastern Minnesota. There, they made their Tater Tot Hotdish with a corn/pea mix – YUCK!

Shredded cheese

Something simple like a cheddar. No need to get crazy with a pepper jack.

Salt & Pepper

 

That’s it. It’s that simple!

If Tater Tot Hotdish doesn’t sound like your cup of tea, (or bowl of Hotdish) check out Oreida’s website (www.oreida.com/recipes) for over 100 different recipes. They have enough Totcho recipes to have a different kind of Totcho (nachos made with Tater Tots) almost every day in February.

Savor the flavor my friends. And you’re welcome!

Want more recipe ideas? Check out our most recent Lunch Box Hack post.

About the Author

Picture of HR Manager, Beth Bangtson

Beth Bangtson, HR Manager

Remembering Martin Luther King Jr. on his Day of Honor

Several years ago, I took a trip to DC to visit my sister, a US Air Force Master Sergeant (MSgt). We spent one day walking nearly 12 miles at the National Mall, hitting up all the “must see” places, including:

  • The White House (where the first Black president of the United States hopped into a helicopter and flew to Boston while we watched in awe)
  • The Washington Monument
  • The buds of the cherry blossoms as they were just starting to pop
  • A private tour of the US Capitol building with an intern from the Senators office
  • The WWII Memorial where we remembered our grandpas
  • The Vietnam Veterans Memorial where we shaded in the names of complete strangers
  • The Lincoln Memorial
  • The grounds of the Korean War Veterans Memorial
  • The FDR Memorial to ‘fear nothing but fear itself’
  • The Tidal Basin
  • The Thomas Jefferson Memorial

In the end, we got to watch the helicopters fly back overhead as President Obama returned from Boston that evening. It was an incredible day that still brings back so many emotions and memories. One thing that stands out to me is the simplicity and magnitude of the MLK Jr. Memorial. A giant piece of rock (30 feet high) with MLK Jr.’s image carved into it and the simple statement:

‘Out of the mountain of despair, a stone of hope’.
MLK Jr. Memorial

Growing up in southwestern Minnesota, I learned how Martin Luther King Jr. had changed the world. It was on the grounds outside of Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta where I was lucky enough to take some time to ponder how different the world could have been had that fateful April day in 1968 never happened.

I learned to treat others the way I wanted to be treated, to befriend (and defend) anyone who looked like they needed a friend and to never take for granted the gifts and abilities I had. As one of four kids in a dual-income, lower-middle class family, we played with all the kids in the neighborhood and befriended the children who came in and out of the women’s shelter  just behind our house. It never dawned on me that Josh was any different than me just because he had dark hair, dark eyes, and dark skin while I had dark hair, dark eyes, and lighter skin. It didn’t occur to me  that Judy might have bigger struggles than me because her tall, white father had fallen in love with a petite, beautiful black woman.

I’m hopeful that I’m doing as good of a job with my children as I believe my parents did with their own. However, I know that the world around us hasn’t gotten any better. We still have so far to go in fighting for MLK Jr.’s dream.

To celebrate Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy (this link shares history of MLK Jr. Day), I leave you with two inspiring MLK Jr. quotes:

“Never, never be afraid to do what’s right, especially if the well-being of a person or animal is at stake. Society’s punishments are small compared to the wounds we inflict on our soul when we look the other way.”

“I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality… I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word.”

About the Author

Picture of HR Manager, Beth Bangtson

Beth Bangtson, HR Manager

Winter Celebrations & Winter Holidays Around The World

There are a lot of winter celebrations and holiday cheer this time of the year. As a result, I thought it might be fun to share how cultures throughout the world celebrate during the winter months.

Winter Solstice
  • The shortest day of the year.
  • Falls in mid-December for those in the Northern Hemisphere and June for those in the Southern Hemisphere.
  • At this time, half of the Earth is tilted furthest from the sun at this exact moment.
    • Fun Fact: Did you know that if you stand outside at noon on winter solstice and look at your shadow, it will be the longest shadow you cast the entire year?
  • Other similar celebrations include:
    • The Yalda festival in Iran marking the day when Mithra, an angel of light, was thought to have been born.
    • China’s Dongzhi festival celebrates winter’s darkness beginning to give way to light.
    • Scandinavians gather for Juul, or Yule, a multi-day feast when ancient people would welcome the return of the sun god.
Hanukkah
  • A Jewish holiday honoring the Maccabee’s victory over King Antiochus in 165 B.C., a victory seen as a miracle of God.
  • Hanukkah is celebrated for eight nights with prayer, the lighting of the menorah, food, games, sing-a-longs, and gift exchanges.
  • The dates of Hanukkah change due to the lunar cycle but typically occur in late November or early December.
Christmas
  • A Christian holiday that celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ.
  • Traditions around the world include decorating a tree with lights and ornaments, hanging mistletoe, attending church services on Christmas Eve, and waiting for Santa Clause to arrive from the North Pole in time for Christmas morning (December 25th).
    • Fun Fact: Santa’s arrival is different in many cultures: in Hawaii he arrives by boat, in Australia on water skies, and in Ghana he finds his way out of the jungle to leave gifts for children.
Kwanzaa
  • Commemorates African heritage, during which family and friends gather to exchange gifts and light a series of candles.
  • The candles symbolize the basic values of African American family life: unity, self-determination, collective work and responsibility, cooperative economics, purpose, creativity, and faith
  • Kwanzaa occurs from December 26th through January 1st.
New Years Day
  • Takes place on January 1st each year
  • The count down starts the night before and often fireworks are on display as the clock strikes midnight on the first day of the new year in the Gregorian calendar.
  • Black-eyed peas, collard greens and pork are commonly served on New Years Day in the southern United States.
  • Black-eyed peas are thought to bring luck and prosperity for the new year. Greens are considered a sign of wealth for the new year. Pork is a symbol of moving forward.
Epiphany, or Three Kings Day
  • Celebrated as the day the three wise men first see Jesus, bringing him their gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.
  • This celebration occurs in many different ways 12 days after Christmas. Examples include:
    • In Puerto Rico, children leave a box with hay under their beds at night so the kings will leave presents.
    • In France, kings’ cakes have hidden toys, jewels, or coins inside. The person who finds the trinket in their cake gets to wear a crown.
Chinese New Year
  • Considered the most important of the traditional Chinese holidays.
  • This holiday falls between January 21st and February 20th.
  • Family and friends celebrate together during this time to usher out the old year and bring forth the luck and prosperity of the new year.
  • Legend has it that thousands of years ago, a monster named Nian would attack villages at the beginning of each year. Loud noises, bright lights, and the color red scare the monster away. Today, the celebration uses fireworks, red clothes, and red decorations.
Las Posadas
  • Primarily celebrated in Mexico, Guatemala, and parts of the southwestern United States, Las Posadas is a 9-day celebration.
  • During this celebration, a procession of people moves from home to home with a candle inside a paper lamp, stopping at each home to sing and pray.
  • Eventually, the procession ends but the celebration continues with more singing, delicious food, and the breaking of a piñata.
Eid-ul-Adha
  • Celebrated worldwide in honor of the willingness of the prophet Abraham to sacrifice his first-born at God’s command.
  • Celebrated near the end of the calendar year but dates vary based on the Islamic lunar calendar.
  • Families gather together in a large congregation, dressed in their finest, and sacrifice their best halal domestic animals as a symbol of Abraham’s sacrifice. Friends, neighbors, and the poor share the meat to ensure no one goes without during the holiday feast.
Diwali
  • A five-day Hindu festival and official holiday in India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and Myanmar.
  • Diwali celebrates the attainment of nirvana by Mahavira (an Indian Sage), as well as the death of Swami Dayanand (a Hindu religious leader).
  • The holiday involves the lighting of small clay lamps to symbolize the victory of good over evil.

For visuals of these holidays, check out this video.

This list doesn’t come close to covering all of the winter holidays celebrated around the world. There are others such as Boxing Day, Omisoka, St. Lucia Day, St. Nicholas Day, Ramadan, etc. However, we hope that no matter how you celebrate this winter, you’re able to safely celebrate with the people that matter most to you and remember the traditions that keep your spirit up from year to year.

Happy Holidays from your friends at PMG.

 

About the Author

Picture of HR Manager, Beth Bangtson

Beth Bangtson, Human Resource Manager

Politics at Work – How to Keep Your Cool

Navigating politics at work can be hard. I’m admittedly someone who keeps their political views to themselves. I don’t research enough to support my political views with facts. I simply believe what I believe. Then, I try really hard not to judge others for believing what they believe (easier said than done sometimes).

This year, with social media at my fingertips, it’s become harder and harder to bite my tongue. Again, without the facts, I stay away from political debates because I know I’m not educated enough to be a fighter.

Not everyone has the same control though. So, when it comes to talking politics around the watercooler in the office or around the timeclock on the shop floor, what should you consider?  Let me help you decide:

Consider your employer brand and culture!

When you make a political stance on social media and have coworkers, customers, or clients that follow your platforms, their opinion of your employer may change based on your singular view point. Think twice before you make your political stance public. Consider not only your own reputation, but your employers’ reputation as well.

Remember that work should is an environment of mutual respect, not politics!

While you and your cube-mate may not agree on who should win the political election, your respect for each other as coworkers and supporting members of the team should not be forgotten. You will have to work together on November 4th after the election has concluded.

Walk away, if needed.

If politics do come up, know that it’s unlikely you’ll be changing anyone’s mind or anyone will be changing your mind, so consider cutting the conversation short. Don’t engage in something you know could get heated. Walking away doesn’t make you a chicken, it makes you smart.

The elections are just weeks away but until then, focus on what should be keeping you busy at work and remember to be kind. If you need more information on those in the running for office, On The Issues provides detail for candidates at all levels of government.

Red or Blue. Conservative or Liberal. Donkey or Elephant.

United We Stand, Divided We Fall.

 

About the Author

Picture of HR Manager, Beth Bangtson

Beth Bangtson, HR Manager