Pour 1.5 oz tequila, .75 oz Citronge (or Cointreau) in a glass. Fill almost to top with orange juice. Slow pour grenadine for effect. “Float” Citronge or Cointreau over top with back of spoon.
“The world is not black and white”: a sentence that is usually met with frowns and contemplative silence, followed by the expectation that the recipient of the utterance capitulate to the speaker’s usually specious position. We reflect, in that moment, that there is a sliding two-dimensional gray scale on which all things should be measured and, as it’s all gray, there’s quite a bit of room for interpretation. As I listened to Sarah Bartholomeusz’s TEDx talk, I realized: we don’t live in a two-dimensional gray scale world either. Ours is a three (or more) dimensional world full of colors from a near infinite palette. And here’s the liberating part, at least for the Human Resource or Compliance manager who is faced with the observation that the world is not black or white: colors have rules.
Imagine, for a moment, blue. Chances are, you are probably seeing an azure, sapphire, cobalt, sky, royal, cornflower, or any of a hundred shades of blue. You might even see teal. In the end, we can agree, however, that the color we imagined is blue or in the blue family. Similarly, we’d reject the claim that canary yellow, mauve, crimson, or burnt orange are blue. Why, then, do we encounter such resistance to laws, statutes, and regulations?
Think of the last time, as an HR professional, you were asked to turn a blind eye to the salary exempt administrator who, for the nth consecutive day, was out on the production line because “a deadline had to be met” or when you read about an otherwise qualified female candidate getting passed over for a promotion because, well, “it’s still a man’s job.” I find it curious that these very same champions of civil liberty rail at the suggestion that the customer be put off (you can’t do that) or production be shut down until a safety item be reinstalled (our guys have to be paid). Last I checked, the Supreme Court has not yet ruled on the customer’s right to immediate service. If they have, somebody best alert the airlines.
HR requires a substantial amount of flexibility and adaptability. While consistency is an important value, we know that one size rarely fits all. Within the legal landscape, we have a full spectrum of hues to work with, but we must make it clear that we cannot change the colors.
Please share in the comment section a story of a time you were asked to “bend the color spectrum” and how you handled it.