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The ladies of pleasure….



I’m not a huge fan of Valentine’s Day if the truth be known.  I’m not against expressing love or taking time out to think about the special person in your life. But I am against the way that 14th February has essentially become one commercial glitz fest of the most tacky proportions.  The equation of love with quantum of giving just seems sick.

If you’re on Twitter and follow me at all, you’ll also know that I am not against throwing my love around…some would say a little too freely!  Although as Mrs. HRD says, “They only like you because you’re anonymous……if they REALLY knew you…..” And that of course is what most realtionships are like….not the fluffy teddybears with hearts and the balloons with expressions of foreverness….but a more measured, deadpan appraisal.

I know that being Valentine’s Daythere will be a plethora of posts about love and community and blah blah blah blah. But  I am a giver, so what can I do?  I’m not going to a general splurge of, “I love you all” because quite frankly it wouldn’t be true……but if there is an opportunity to highlight a couple of people….well then I’d be a fool not to step right in…..

Lena Maurer writes a blog called Dumb and Glamorous Ph.D which is about life and food and philosophy and music and fairly much everything that isn’t HR.  On its own that is a great thing and reason to be recommended.  Add to that, however, that Lena was one of the first people to read my blog in the early days and comment and provide encouragement and support.  Anyone who writes a blog will know that comments are one of the things that keeps you going.  You can look at the stats all that you like and you can see that people are reading or viewing, but who the hell are they and what do they think about you and the rubbish you’re writing?  Until they take the time to comment and let you know then you’re in the dark.  And one comment tends to breed further comments and therefore, the people that were on my previous site early doors commenting and supporting when there were very few around get my love and affection.

Emma P. writes a blog called Onatrainagain.  Emma is relatively new to the world of blogs and blogging.  I’d like to think that I had a small hand in her doing so, although that isn’t the reasons for including her here.  I had a chat with Emma on Skype when she was thinking on setting up the blog, we did some of the technical jiggery-pokery at the time and we were talking about content.  My advice to Emma was not to restrict her content to HR related matters, although she is an HR pro, but to allow herself to walk outside of that realm if her instinct took her.  Not only has she been one of the most prolific bloggers to come onto the scene, but she has written some of the most powerful personal posts I have read in a while.  That and she is one of the very few people who have seen me, but I haven’t seen them. Something to do with Zumba apparently…..

Is this one cheating? Ahh bugger it, like I care. So Lisa Scales doesn’t really blog, but she is a massive supporter of those that do through commenting and retweeting links and that is a hugely important part of the community that is often over looked.  Lisa is also, without doubt, the funniest person I have met in many, many, many years.  Her presence in a room is enough to make me grin from ear to ear….and also normally run for cover….she is a little over excitable and I tend to be on a slower burn when I’m meeting people.  But the reason that I wanted to mention Lisa is her wholehearted and total commitment to being both a successful business woman and adoring mother. I know that these things are hard to balance and that they can cause heartache and pain. But I also know that Lisa manages to achieve them in spades.  Even if it doesn’t always feel that way.

I’ve written about Corporate Daycare before, in fact she appeared in my end of year awards as the “Blog I wished I wrote” and to be honest, I am rehashing old ground here because that is still absolutely the case and is one of the main reasons that I include her here (as well as the fact that she has a thing for Englishmen and I may want to visit Canada at some point and could do with cheap lodgings and a hot meal). But her blog is going into it’s sixth year. Yes six! and all of us Johnnie-come-latelys can button it and respect her authoritah….

Ailsa Suttie and I first started talking before she was Ailsa Suttie.  Well clearly she was Ailsa, but she was, like me, anonymous.  Since that point she has come out of the closet and started blogging. I’ve met Ailsa and I find her natural and incredibly easy to get on with.  Ailsa is taking a massive step this year. For being that brave she deserves love and support. And the fact that when I was trying to leave the #ConnectingHR tweet up, she persuaded me to stay for a quick dram….I’m sooooo easy, but then you knew that didn’t you!

So Alison Chisnell is another one of the long lost of new and up and coming bloggers from the UK writing about the workplace and their lives.  In a funny way Alison reminds me of Trish McFarlane (in an online sense only you’ll understand) with her energy and passion and support for the community. I’m expecting big things of Alison, which might be wholly unfair, but then again no-one said that life was fair did they?  The community needs people to take it by the scruff of the neck and people who know what they are talking about because they do the do…..rather than just talking the do.  Alison is an HR pro, a mum, a blogger and one to watch. That is all.

I don’t know Beth Mayes so well. I haven’t met her but I do know her husband James.  For that alone she deserves mention here, not many people have to put up with so much 🙂 . But Beth started blogging last month and is already coming up with some really interesting and diverse content that spans HR and beyond. Beth is also a self confessed geek….which is great because so am I and having seen James’ gadgets I know that she is truly married to the right man!  And writing about HR from a third sector perspective, like Emma P also makes an exciting difference.

There are clearly a number of other people that I could and should mention, the wonderful Sarah Knight back from climbing Kili, Lousie Triance for her work on bringing recruiters together, my favourite pocket rocket Charlie Duff, Sara Headworth for being just amazing, Wendy Jacob for her ongoing humor……………………..and many many more.

I guess the point that I wanted to make is that, if you listen to the loud voices on the internet and certainly in the HR and Recruitment fields, you’ll hear predominantly middle aged white men. But look beyond the bravado and the swinging dicks and you will hear a whole host of sensible, educated, articulate women making their views heard….whilst also balancing caeer and home without anuy fuss or nonsense.

To all of them and to you, I wish a very happy 14th February. Ladies, keep doing what you do.

UPDATE: It has been (surprisingly) very diplomatically pointed out to me that I of course neglected to mention the one and only BettyBBlonde….I shall now go to the corner and hang my head in shame….I knew this post was more trouble than it was worth….

12 Comments leave one →
  1. 02/14/2011 09:05

    Oi! I resemble some of those remarks. Nice post Theo, always good to recognise those that write good stuff because they enjoy it. I think I’m right in that none of the above are supporting corporate interests with their blogs? Somehow, it always makes a difference to the feel of the thing. I’d certainly be a little nearer the line with mine if there wasn’t such a strong business association.

  2. 02/14/2011 09:11

    Thanks you Theo – your support and kind words mean a lot.

    I follow the majority of those wonderful women you mention and whole heartedly agree with everything you say. Have a wonderful day sir and I look forward to meeting you on Thursday.


  3. 02/14/2011 09:31

    Love you too, Theo! Happy V Day! xx

  4. 02/14/2011 11:39

    What a great post Theo – thank you! I have been smiling all morning from reading it, very kind of you. What a great group of ladies to be a part of, as well.

    We must talk more about those ‘big things’ at some point though…. 😉

  5. 02/14/2011 13:00

    Thanks Theo! To be called ‘Amazing'(from someone other than my husband) has made my day ;o)

  6. Corporate Daycare permalink
    02/14/2011 13:16

    You words never cease to inspire me and your compliments never get old.

    Thank you and if you are ever in my neck of the woods, there will always be a room in our igloo for you. 😉

    Happy Valentine’s Day too.

  7. 02/14/2011 13:58

    Aww shucks, stop it Theo!*blushes*
    If it helps you are my favourite anonymous blogger. For sure.

    Hope you have a happy 14th Feb too, it’s my daddy’s birthday (77 years young) today so that’s always been the real occasion for me.

    You boys can take a leaf out of his book if you like, it mainly imparts the wisdom “You’re only as old as the woman you feel” (classic) and “Who knows, I may father another child yet” (oh God, Dad!)

    So if any your kids ever say you embarrass them, I will personally speak to them and tell them my stories. For the record, I have never, ever accused my dad of embarrassing me. I’m unembarrassable. No one yet died of shame…

    Have a wonderful day. By all means be excellent to each other, but be nice to yourself today too.

    Thanks Theo… xxx

  8. 02/14/2011 14:08

    To have my name mentioned amongst these great ladies is lovely enough without the gushy stuff you wrote about me too – thank you and also thank you for your support in my ongoing quest to wear my pants over my tights xxx

    • 02/14/2011 14:35

      @Lisa – It’s no quest…. I’m sure I’ve seen you do that!


  9. Lena permalink
    02/14/2011 16:44

    People out there should know what a good friend you are. You are one of the kindest most supporting people I know… Plus ladies… Is he a looker! (Mrs. HRD didn’t kill me at school… She won’t now… 😉 )

    It’s an honour to be named amongst these women bloggers. Some I have read and some I will have to go read…

    Thank you so much Theo! Happy Lupercalia to you… Oh no, wait… Happy beheaded martyr’s day to you? Still doesn’t read right… Ok… Happy Valentine’s will have to do…

    Much love, XXX

  10. 02/15/2011 00:39

    Congratulations. Lots of stuff communicated in an admirable way with an intro that suggested a tirade against the commercialization of what was apparently a religious holiday at the outset…and equally to my disenchantment, a method of parting me from my money in case I was perceived to be somewhat parsimonious, which concluded in an un-emasculating compliment to massed ranks of commendably capable personnel who are designated as the target of the Valentine’s day message. May I simply thank the one true deserving recipient of my 14th February subliminal message of commitment, for having indicated last year that the gesture warranted recycling and meaning it, to the extent that when the horrendously expensive card was re-produced this year it recieved positive recognition and included an observation that if I had not reminded said recipient of the recycling initiative, the act could have earned credence as a fresh declaration of devotion.

  11. 02/15/2011 08:29

    @James Mayes – Spot on James, dead right.

    @HR without ticking boxes – You’re welcome. See you Thursday (I’ll be the one hiding in the corner)

    @Wendy Jacob – 🙂

    @Alison Chisnell – That, my friend, you need to work out for yourself…..

    @Sara Headworth – Pleasure!

    @Corporate Daycare – You’ll catch the fish though right?

    @Charlie Duff – He sounds like one hell of a man!

    @Lisa Scales – You’re welcome!

    @Lena – Bless you.

    @Peter Hinkson – Thanks for taking the time to comment. Glad the recycling initiative went well……….

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