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“The way you feel when you awake early in the morning and your mind is fresh and as yet unsoiled by the noise of the outside world – that’s space worth protecting. So too is the zone you lock into when you’re really working well. Don’t let intrusions bounce you out of it. Put up barriers. Put up the proper chuting to direct what’s urgent and unimportant to the right people.”

 – Ryan Holiday, Stillness is the Key

March 1, 2024

Hello and welcome to the mercurial month of March – a busy one with lots of events, milestones and things to celebrate. Let me take you through what’s happening in the weeks ahead.

International Women’s Day on March 8th

March 8th marks International Women’s Day, celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. Initiated in 1911 – almost a decade before the 19th Amendment codified women’s right to vote here in the United States – it is a call to action for accelerating women’s equality globally, and the theme for 2024 is: Let’s Inspire Inclusion.

In honor of this event, I’d like to highlight some global, national and local nonprofits whose missions support women and girls in various ways. If you can, please consider getting involved with these worthy organizations, several of which have local chapters you can support in your own state or community.

Girl Scouts – Providing opportunities for girls to make friends, pursue adventure and leadership, give back to the community, and have fun. And great news: cookie season is upon us!

Girls on the Run – Empowering girls to live emotionally and physically healthy lives.

Girl Up – Supporting UN agencies that focus on adolescent girls.

CEI Women’s Business Centers – Supporting female entrepreneurs by providing resources to help women start or grow their own business in Maine.

New Hampshire Women’s Foundation – Investing in opportunity and equality for women and girls through research, advocacy, education, grantmaking and philanthropy.

Spring Forward March 10th

Honestly, what I’m most excited for this month happens on March 10th at 2:00 am when we spring forward and advance our clocks one hour. Even though we’ll lose an hour of sleep, gaining that extra hour of light at the end of the day is game-changing for those of us who are winter-weary. Then, the vernal equinox on the 19th will usher us officially into spring, which feels like a major win every year.

Survey Results: What do employees value most in an employer?

As HR, compensation and recruiting consultants, we operate at the intersection between employer and employee, and specifically at the crossroads of what the employer offers, and what the employee requires. It is a constant push and pull that we navigate with our clients, who rely on us to help them attract, manage and retain top talent.

To update our understanding of what it is candidates and employees value most in the employer relationship, we conducted a survey during the first six weeks of 2024 designed to answer just that. If you participated in the survey, thank you for sharing your opinion!

We learned that, nearly four years after the disruption of a global pandemic, some things have changed and some remain the same. Flexibility in where and when people work is in as high demand as ever. It’s clear that the world in which most people commute to a central office five days a week is a thing of the past and that flexible/hybrid work arrangements are here to stay. Read on for more insights.

We’re pleased to once again be partnering with Fran DeLuca, employment law attorney at Epstein Becker Green, for our webinar: Demystifying the Interplay Between ADA and FMLA for Enhanced Workplace Compliance, on April 24th from 12-1:00. The overlap of these two distinct laws often creates confusion for employers. KMA’s Cindy Letourneau will speak with Fran, who will help elevate your understanding of leave laws and ensure a more compliant, supportive workplace. Please join us!

Register here.

Mainebiz Women’s Leadership Forum on May 1st

Looking ahead to May, because that will be here before we know it, I am proud to be joining the panel at the Mainebiz Women’s Leadership Forum on May 1st at Hannaford Hall in Portland. Fellow panelists include Sara Belliveau, CEO, BerryDunn; Jenn Lever, President, Baxter Brewing; Marcia Minter, Founder, Indigo Arts; and Lindsay Skilling, CEO, Giffords Ice Cream. I can’t wait to dig into the conversation with these fearless, talented and inspiring women!

Learn more and register here.

Required reading: here are some recent articles you may have missed:

In today’s business landscape, the demand for exceptional leadership at the executive level has never been higher. As executive recruiters with a successful track record placing top-tier talent in C-Suite and professional roles, we understand the unique challenges associated with the process and why it requires a strategic approach. It entails understanding what the employer needs in a new executive hire, and also what successful candidates are looking for. Building rapport with executive candidates, gaining trust and piquing their interest in a new career opportunity requires advanced tools, extensive market research, the ability to create connection, and many years of experience handling all of the above. Read on.

How to Manage Effectively in Remote and Hybrid Environments

Managing employees in a remote or hybrid environment isn’t so different than managing them in the office. It has its unique challenges, as any environment does, but these aren’t barriers to success. The fundamentals of management are the same. You’re still working with people, helping them do their best work. The key is matching your management practices to the partially or fully remote setting. How you manage may look a little different. We recommend the following management practices when you supervise people who work at home some or all of the time. Read on.

Thanks for sharing a moment with us today. Please reach out to the team at KMA for help with recruiting, managing, and retaining your most valuable resource: your people.

Cheers to all the light-filled days ahead! ☀️

Kim Anania

President and CEO

KMA Human Resources Consulting