Because it needs to be said…

Jimmy Kimmel National FB Unfriend Day

Too funny not to share everywhere, so in case you haven’t seen it (which apparently in years passed, I have not); here’s a good laugh for you – I”m guilty of so many I hope I have FB friends come 11/18!



And historically, where it started with Jimmy, here!  I’ve always loved William Shatner.


Difficult or outright bad bosses, read on!

So, I don’t know about you, but I’ve had my share of them, maybe that’s why bloggers try to make a living blogging – to escape the corporate world of small cubicles, broken office equipment, office politics, confinement, that one weird employee and bad bosses.

I found two great articles in one day, actually less than 15 minutes apart…

is it “Bad Boss’s Day”?  #horriblebosses2

Both of these are great articles..

The first by Amy Rees Anderson a contributor for @Forbes; her article is entitled, “How a Bad Boss Can Make You Sick” and it focusses on noticing the physical stress and health risks of the noted 77% of employees who experience physical symptoms from bad bosses.  That’s staggeringly sad. Three (3) out of (4) employees report that their boss is the worst part of their job and they’d rather give up a raise for a new boss.  I can relate and if interested, I’ve detailed some of my boss trauma below.

human workplace drawn logo yellow sun

The second article is by Liz Ryan of @humanworkplace   I just adore Liz, she has written so many amazing Human Resource articles that if you’re working in any corporate situation, I’d recommend you follow her or review her website (human  Everything from “How to Fix Your Manager to articles for job seekers or anyone needing HR advice.  And note in the article, “fixing your boss” is really more about “understanding your boss” and when it’s time to give grace or move on.

I have had bosses and work situations that literally made me so anxious I would panic on the drive in to work.  Not even horrible things like discrimination, safety issues or sexual harassment; though when I was younger, much younger, before sexual harassment was a “thing”, I had a boss that told me my butt looked so good in my jeans (and he really thought that was a compliment) that he offered me up as payment to the UPS man; jokingly of course, but really? and though I was uncomfortable (I was like 19), I had no idea that was just wrong.

…and my worst case of sexual harrasement was when we had a new President for our company come in (and sorry, he looked like an old frog) and he, we gals sadly discovered, had a penchant for blatantly kissing the young office girls.  I was able to steer clear of him for quite some time but then as a reward for a job well done (ugh), they promoted me to his Assistant and gave me a desk just outside his office, a desk I tried never to sit at.  I made it a point to only deliver his mail, etc. when he wasn’t in the office, thinking that not being in his office with him would be my safest route.  Well, I was wrong, it didn’t matter, during a meeting with another man present (of authority and who I thought was a nice guy) ole’ frog lips grabbed my face before I knew what was happening and planted a kiss on my lips – he was an old Italian fresh over from Italy, don’t know if maybe there they thought that was OK as he surely didn’t seem to realize this behavior was not OK.  In any case, no one in authority (and many people knew of his constant and far reaching abuse) ever spoke a word about it. That was in the early 80s before it was really recognized or given much concern; and we girls were young and didn’t know how to respond or who to respond to when the authority folks already knew and didn’t do anything. In hindsight, I think they just wanted to keep their jobs.  It’s funny, but it was only a few months ago in discussing this type of thing with a friend, that I realized I had been sexually harassed and a number of times long ago.  Anyway, those are, though difficult, pretty clear cut cases that HR will handle for you.

The other kind of insidious negative boss behavior I think is almost worse because it’s just human behavior, just a boss who doesn’t care to be on his/her best behavior.  Its that slow drip of disdain or disrespect that bosses can inflict upon their employees, that “kick the dog” behavior because the dog cannot fight back.  Dare I say, I despise bosses that take advantage in any way of their authority over you, but I think most of them are just human and either untrained in management or just have low social IQs, which is the gist of Liz’s article.  Bosses are human, they have frailties and insecurities and sometimes we unwittingly walk right into those.

The list could go on and on – so many uninformed, untrained, misguided, authority hungry, insecure bosses out there and we have to learn to deal with them, but there is also a time to move on.  With all this negativity let me also share that I’ve had one boss in particular, who really sincerely walked the walk of a leader, he was my greatest joy and a wonderful mentor and we’re still FB friends – good ones are out there but can be hard to find.

Having said all that, I start a new job on Wednesday!  Fingers crossed that this role of the dice brings me a seasoned veteran of socially savvy, ethical boss stock!  Sadly, blogging will now have to be my “moonlighting” activity.

Some fun links below and if you’ve had some particularly interesting boss interactions, feel free to share them in the comments, I’d love to hear other’s survival techniques!  🙂

Horrible Bosses

Horrible Bosses2 (link starts with a trailer, so speakers off if you’re at work!) hits theaters November 26th

and there is always this classic, one of my favorites, Office Space.  (Speakers off if you’re at work!), naughty, naughty employee!

Small Bites: “How To Avoid Being Boring On Twitter”

Really enjoyed this post aiming to rid Twitter of sad sack boring posting!

The Golden Age of Executive Assistants

All I can say is “it’s about time!”, thank you Sanjena SathianOZY via usatoday.comfor writing this lovely article, “Executive Assistant Is The New Power Job”.

If you’re an EA or an AA, you’ve known for a long time the supportive super power that is required to consistently be one step ahead of your boss’s needs regardless of their neglecting to leave a breadcrumb trail to what their needs may be.

Assistants (of all types) are the mind readers, those with the keenest intuition, able to pick up the smallest non-verbal signals and able to place them in their perfect puzzle piece spot in the myriad of priority options, the exacting placement of which is required to ensure our bosses are properly handled and deadlines met timely.

Executive Assistants are also the gate keepers with enough overall knowledge of the company to know which seekers in the never-ending string of people they should let through the pearly gates to the Exec’s door and which get the “take a ticket” and get in line reception. Along with that, they have the diplomacy and graceful communication skills to ensure everyone believes the boss cares immensely for their issue at hand.

The value of these dedicated and talented employees has been around for a long time so I’m thankful to hear that finally, maybe they are getting their due.

Because of my extensive experience (read that to be my subtle way of saying “youth” is not my niche these days) I would like to add that though the youngsters have drive and determination and maybe boundless stamina, mid to older EAs, in addition to that, bring with them (generally) higher EQs and overall more business and market knowledge; so please in your search for the best fit EA keep in mind old dogs can learn the new tricks of the younger app happy, Internet savvy Social Media Mavens. (Enjoyable also is the article by Teresa Mears entitled, “Why You’re Never Too Old to Become a Social Media Maven” )

One of this field’s greatest enticements is the ability for the EA or AA to transfer their experience and knowledge from one market to another. I’ve worked in the technology fields even before they were booming, sales, marketing, publishing, non-profit, construction, insurance, legal and am now, for my freelance business also writing, blogging and utilizing SEO – in all of these markets an EA/AA picks up something along the way that is beneficial to the next employer and with that your EQ rises as well, those intangibles only grow.

Whether you are a young EA starting out and lighting the world on fire with a fresh top of the line education, IQ/EQ, boundless enthusiasm and drive or you’re an older EA gracing businesses with your carpetbag of diverse experience not only in business practices but in the gentle art of human care that can only come with experience and time – you are in a field that is booming and finally getting the recognition it has always deserved.

shared via Charlotte Quider on LinkedIn (

SCORE ONE FOR THE LADIES – the art of brewing beer was pioneered by women

Came across this while doing some internet research for topics I’m passionate about.
The full article on Huffington Post is available here and is well worth the read.



Excerpt from the article… “Yes, the manliest man drink for manly men was primarily brewed, according to ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics, by the ladies. Brewing beer was seen as a domestic chore for much of history, like making bread and other things that came from grain, until the economy shifted into an industrial-based one and commercial breweries (run by men) took off. As a sad side effect, unique regional brews died out as large-scale production limited available varieties of beer.

There’s even a word, likely originating during the 12th century, for female brewers: “brewster.”

Leadership and Learning Out Loud

How could I not include this article in my “MeLearningOutLoud” blog.  I love this article!

…and I’m a firm believer in what it has to say.  How we approach life and others makes a huge difference in our lives and as referenced in the American Management Association’s 2013 “Great Leaders Learn Out Loud” article, in our work place leaders as well.   Also noteworthy – the importance of quality leadership in authority positions such as community leaders, teachers and parents.

I’ve had good management and I’ve had bad management – it’s amazing to me how many people with no real world experience get into management positions where they are not capable of dealing well with people much less in the difficult and often tenuous work place environment peppered with land mines just waiting to detonate issues.  IMHO the best are those that mentor their employees, who truly, genuinely want to pass along their experiences and get in the trenches with you as you learn.  I had one boss, who always told me stories to explain new concepts – he was an absolute peach and the best boss and mentor I have ever had.  Those that have come after him, have had big shoes to fill and none have accomplished to his level yet.

On the other end of the spectrum are the bosses that can’t get out of their own box, that offer no training or little training and who approach process flaws and human error in a combative, “what’s wrong with you” approach which doesn’t lend itself to employees daring to venture out of their own boxes again to innovate – the approach is stifling to the employee and the employees watching the interaction.  Great leaders teach by example and are, I believe, quite transparent which makes them highly relatable and approachable.

I’ve not always been commended for my “learn out loud” style so this is a great personal find for me.  It’s not only OK to learn this way, it’s a quality of great leaders!  From the article – offer a compelling purpose (Steve Jobs – “make it great” or even maybe Tim Gunn from Project Runway, “make it work”) that inspires; leaders as storytellers to demonstrate their passion and leaders who help not just in learning but in unlearning – the path to growth begins with “I don’t know” or as I used to say to managers when they’d expect I was trained without having taken the time (or materials!) to train me – sure I am trained, but I don’t know what I don’t know – I believe a learning out loud environment helps avoid the pitfalls of the “I don’t know what I don’t know” situation.

Creating good employees takes time and commitment and again, IMHO, so much of that old school frame of mind seems to have been lost with the current company expectations that newbies come up to speed with little or no training in record time and I’m sure some folks fit that mold but it also leaves out a number of great employees and young future leaders when an employer doesn’t invest and “learn out loud” with their employees.  But all that is just business and for me this article is so much more (as my blog title implies).

Curiosity is always what propels me and I know I can drive people (mmm, my husband!) a little crazy peppering him with questions about himself (or anything for that matter); he says he feels interrogated and I’m ever so sorry as that’s not my intention, I’m just desperately curious about “why” for everything.  “Why” did we choose this way and not that way? “Why” did he choose these words and not those?  And I approach life with an anthropologist’s mind of sincerely wanting to understand our world and the people I know in it… and more importantly I’d love to leave this world having helped anyone learn more about themselves.  That’s my definition of a good life leader is a good listener, observer and someone curious, open and willing to help you see in yourself what they see in you and to ignite a fire in you to achieve the boundless possibilities they see in you; to be still enough and interested enough to hear you without interjection or judgement – trust and partnering are paramount to allow people to open up and share, whether it’s work or personal life and no one I know is going to open up if they feel judged or ridiculed for their input. Humble, transparent, mentoring individuals are a rare find and a gem when you get a good one!

This article is beautiful and well worth the read if you have an interest, personal or business, in desiring to mentor, coach and assist your fellow human beings in their walk in life.

Blessings cyber friend – thanks for letting me learn out loud on this one!


PS: Another great blog article by Leading In Context here as well.

Spader, Fallon, Concerts, Comic-Con and Tantric Sex (yep, they all go together!)

Short post but have to share –  you wouldn’t think these things go together – James Spader discussing Concerts, Comic-Con and Tantric Sex with Jimmy Fallon and it’s well worth the click here.

Your welcome!

What Oak Hills Church Means To Me …

After having my dream of being a stay at home Mom in a picket fence scenario life implode into a volatile and scary divorce during which I was isolated and mourning the time lost with my precious three year old daughter who now was being shuffled like, and with her baggage, to and from her divorced parents homes – one morning I ran into my effervescent apartment-mate neighbor as she skipped out the door to church service. She invited me along, I declined; I’m an introvert and was a suffering introvert – the saddest kind to be. But, after watching her blossom (and she had her own struggles), one day I bravely accompanied her and in the original modulars heard Pastor Kent speak. I’d never heard a sermon spoken such as his as my religious background was nonexistent with my immediate family and minimal with my distant Southern Baptist and Methodist families who could be quite strict and scary in their religious fervor. That sermon by Kent that changed my life and gave me a church home was over 18 years ago.

I remember when we were first informed that Pastor Mike was to join the church – I was devastated. I’d finally found a Pastor in Kent who spoke truthfully and down to earth and I couldn’t conceive a new pastor could come near Kent’s (to me) lofty reverence (now Kent, I know you well and you’re not allowed to shoot “I’ve won” glances at Mike).   Pastor Mike had a skeptical believer to contend with in me. Now, I cannot imagine Oak Hills without the dynamic duo of Pastors Kent and Mike and I hope that each know how very precious they are to me for so many personal reasons.

I also enjoyed cleaning the church with girlfriends and how priceless a time it was to serve humbly and feel God’s quiet constant presence even when the chairs only held the remembrance of congregants.

And as if that wasn’t enough to have moored me to OHC, years later, in a story too long to tell, God brought me together with my husband, Rob, in a most marvelously romantic and God led journey that we’ve been on now for over 10 years and that journey, in providence sustained in part by Pastor Mike’s astute and gently pastoring of us whenever needed.

I cannot say enough about the part that OHC has played in my life, the journey, the staff, so steadfast, humble in Christ and giving of their time and love to each of us in our personal ways.

My blessings and thanks eternally to OHC, and for Pastors Mike and Kent – a parting gift. J

Love, Char

Kent and Mike

If you’d like to read more OHC stories, click here.

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