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Calling DR House! – A Crazy Crazy Day.





The background

I woke up yesterday morning just like any other morning to watch my wife rise from the bed but fall immediately to the ground. Half asleep, I paid little attention as she laid on the side of the bed- I half believed she just changed her mind about getting up. But when I asked if she was okay, her response was really scary, she wasn’t being cute, she said she couldn’t see, and what she could see was just moving around. I asked if she had really fallen back in the bed or was she being cute, her next response was she couldn’t walk- this is no way to wake a sleeping bear, I mean, I haven’t even had coffee yet and I am to play a leading role in a Dr. House Episode… but this is not funny- at all.

Is this really happening?

Oh boy, she can’t see, she can’t walk, and here comes the uncontrollable vomiting. This is when things really got crazy. In order for her not to be sick, she couldn’t move, in order for her not to move, meant she must lay awake or asleep in a steady position- constantly. Nausea from the vision problems, or was it totally seperate- ug, who knows- “I’m fine if I just lay here with my eyes closed.” This is not exactly comforting but she asks for a few hours of sleep- “Lets try to reset me she says.”This after an hour of violent vomiting and realizing that crawling is the answer to not walking.

Absolutely unsure of what to do, hours of googling symptoms Vertigo seems to be the only answer, but which kind, some scenarios are horrible, some give hope, but three or four hours later, the symptoms are worse not better. We decide that it isn’t going to reset- to vomit more than 4 or 5 times is one thing, but 20 – 30 rounds is frightening.

It took us an hour just to get from the bedroom to the car, 25 minutes from the car into the ER, but a bed was immediately offered to her. Describing the symptoms her bloodpressure showed huge spikes when moving, but the good news was she didn’t lose pressure when vertical. Two bags of fluid later, no improvement in the nausea, heavy doses of mediacation are given to stabalize and calm her so that her movement wouldn’t cause further vomiting, and on top of that a heavy duty anti-nausea medication. The trip home proved to be just as complicated, no improvement from medication, and violent vomiting the whole way home.

A cat scan revealed that there are no abnormalities, her bloodwork revealed no sign of infection of the middle ear- they just don’t know why a healthy beautiful girl would suddenly be stricken with the most violent and immobilizing case of Vertigo the DR. had ever seen.

We’ll be seeing a specialist in the coming days as we are not sure if this is something she will have to live with for the long term. It is possible it could go as fast as it came, for the moment there will be plenty of sleep and we’ll worry about the management of it tomorrow.

I did ask Lani if we should share these events with you are, afterall, she is loved by thousands and there will likely be no contact with her by computer for at least the coming days. She reluctantly agreed by saying “they’re like family“, and says thank you to all of your thoughts and prayers. I thank all of you as well.

Benn Rosales is the Founder and CEO of The American Genius (AG), national news network for tech and entrepreneurs, proudly celebrating 10 years in publishing, recently ranked as the #5 startup in Austin. Before founding AG, he founded one of the first digital media strategy firms in the nation and also acquired several other firms. His resume prior includes roles at Apple and Kroger Foods, specializing in marketing, communications, and technology integration. He is a recipient of the Statesman Texas Social Media Award and is an Inman Innovator Award winner. He has consulted for numerous startups (both early- and late-stage), has built partnerships and bridges between tech recruiters and the best tech talent in the industry, and is well known for organizing the digital community through popular monthly networking events. Benn does not venture into the spotlight often, rather believes his biggest accomplishments are the talent he recruits, develops, and gives all credit to those he's empowered.

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  1. Nick

    February 26, 2008 at 10:07 am

    Wow, I saw @gotbob ‘s twit and came running here. Thanks for the update and I’ll be thinking of both of you and wishing for the best. You guys are great people and like I tell my family, “Bad things don’t happen to good people, sometimes we just get tested briefly.”

  2. Bob Wilson

    February 26, 2008 at 10:08 am

    Wow, when I first started reading this, I was afraid the word ‘stroke’ was imminent. I’ll be praying for her.

  3. Jeremy Hart

    February 26, 2008 at 10:08 am

    Praying for you guys …

  4. Ines

    February 26, 2008 at 10:14 am

    Damn! I was praying for you guys all night – how scary is that! Please get better my friend, we really miss you!

  5. toby & sadie

    February 26, 2008 at 10:14 am

    prayer is all we cano offer from Ohio.

    If you need anything don’t hesitate to give me a call.

  6. Candy Lynn

    February 26, 2008 at 10:14 am

    Good thoughts are with you both. Your Tweet family is here wishing you well.

  7. Steven Stearns

    February 26, 2008 at 10:16 am

    I will keep you in thought and prayer, like everyone else.


  8. Cheryl Allin

    February 26, 2008 at 10:16 am

    Oh how awful having to go through that – not only poor Lani enduring all of that, but you having the worry and now frustration at not quite knowing what the bleep is going on. If only Greg House was real, you could get some answers, argh. May you both continue to be buoyed by the thoughts and prayers we send your way – we’ll all scrunch up our faces, close our eyes, focus really hard and send all kinds of positive thoughts and energy her way! If you guys need anything, let me know!

  9. Kim Wood

    February 26, 2008 at 10:16 am

    Oh, thank you, thank you, thank you for posting this. Bless her! Bless you! How scarey indeed!

    Many of us have been on the edge of our desks, seats, beds waiting for some word….. thank you!

  10. Tom at The Real Estate Bloggers

    February 26, 2008 at 10:18 am


    Send my best to Lani and I hope she has a speedy recovery. I wonder if you could set up a laptop perpendicular to her in bed with voice commands so she can twitter.

    After chatting with her online and the prodigious quantity of twitts that Lani generates I could see her going stir crazy just laying down.

    Thoughts and prayers are with you both.


  11. Sarah Cooper

    February 26, 2008 at 10:18 am

    Lani, hang in there. We’ll keep you in our prayers. We miss you, and we’re here to help with anything you need. Give us a shout out and we’ll do whatever we can for you.

  12. Julie Jalone

    February 26, 2008 at 10:18 am

    Wow….that is darn scary. Keep us posted on twitter and I will be thinking good thoughts for you and your wife.

  13. Stephen Wolfe

    February 26, 2008 at 10:24 am

    Thanks for sharing! Her twitter family has been in much discussion and she has been in much prayers. We will continue to lift you both up as her healing progresses.

  14. Dale Chumbley

    February 26, 2008 at 10:26 am

    Thank you Benn for the update! Hugs to Lani and you. You are both in my prayers and look forward to hearing of continual healing in her. I’ll be keeping my new Twitter avatar around while she is healing since she created it for me. She had a busy day of avatar creation prior to getting sick!
    Blessings to you both!

  15. Linda Davis

    February 26, 2008 at 10:31 am

    Yikes! Prayers and hugs heading your way from Connecticut. I’ll be watching for good news soon.

  16. irina Netchaev

    February 26, 2008 at 10:33 am

    Very, very, very scary! I will be thinking about you and Lani. Tell her that she has a lot of people thinking and praying for her. She WILL get well soon.

  17. Kris Berg

    February 26, 2008 at 10:36 am

    I was with Bob on that one, and thank goodness we were wrong – Our prayers are indeed with you. How much can one family handle? San Diego sends much love and our wishes for a speedy recovery.

  18. Michelle De

    February 26, 2008 at 10:37 am

    I’m hoping for good news soon! My thoughts and prayers are with you – she’ll be at the top of my “laptop” list. Let me know if there is anything we can do for the tow of you, other than prayer of course.

  19. @mikeneumann

    February 26, 2008 at 10:38 am

    Lani, like many others, I’ve been praying for you every waking moment. Still doing so in the midst of this silly meeting I’m sitting in. Thanks @Ines for tweeting out this link and strength and understanding to you, Benn. Staying tuned. Whatever I can do, however small…

  20. KC Investments

    February 26, 2008 at 10:38 am

    Benn & Lani,

    Marie and I offer our heartfelt prayers.

  21. gotbob

    February 26, 2008 at 10:39 am

    Thoughts and prayers are still with you and her, Benn. My wife suffers from Vertigo, but not to this extreme. It’s definitely not fun and a multitude of things can trigger it (some for apparently no reason) I am glad it’s nothing more serious than that. Peppermint seems to be a little magic for Vertigo.

    Please continue to keep us posted of her progress.

  22. Heather Elias

    February 26, 2008 at 10:42 am

    Thanks so much for the update. Prayers for healing…I’m thinking of you both!

  23. Mariana

    February 26, 2008 at 10:47 am

    Our thoughts and prayers are with you Lani (and Benn). Heal quickly. We love you.

  24. Ginger Wilcox

    February 26, 2008 at 10:48 am

    Thank you for the update. That is terribly scary for both of you. I will be thinking and praying for Lani. Please let us know if we can do anything.

  25. Hi, I'm Jeff Turner You Are In My Prayers

    February 26, 2008 at 10:54 am

    The entire is sending good thoughts and prayers, Lani and Benn. We’re here for you if you need us.

  26. Jonathan Dalton

    February 26, 2008 at 10:58 am

    Hugs and prayers from Phoenix …

  27. Benjamin Bach

    February 26, 2008 at 11:01 am

    Lani’s a tough cookie. I have a good feeling about all of this working out well 🙂

    Canada’s praying for you …

  28. Chris Shouse

    February 26, 2008 at 11:03 am

    Give Lani my best and my thoughts and prayers will be with her everyday until she is better. I love you Lani and know you will beat whatever this is.

  29. Joel Burslem

    February 26, 2008 at 11:05 am

    Wishing Lani a speedy recovery from everyone at Inman News!

  30. Greg Swann

    February 26, 2008 at 11:09 am

    Holy cow! Godspeed, Lani. Benn, please let us know if there’s anything we can do.

  31. Norm Fisher

    February 26, 2008 at 11:14 am

    Thinking of you both and wishing Lani a speedy recovery. Take care!

  32. Todd Carpenter

    February 26, 2008 at 11:17 am

    My thoughts & prayers are with you both. Hang in there.

  33. Teri Lussier

    February 26, 2008 at 11:24 am

    Thoughts and prayers. …

  34. Jay Thompson

    February 26, 2008 at 11:35 am

    Ugh. How utterly frightening. Francy and I are sending our thoughts and prayers as well. Call if you need anything. And keep us posted.

  35. Mike Price

    February 26, 2008 at 11:41 am

    Wow. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. Im just a phone call and a 3 hour drive away if you need anything at all.

  36. Jim Duncan

    February 26, 2008 at 11:46 am

    Please let us know if there is anything we can do for ya’ll. Our prayers are with you all.

  37. Andy Kaufman

    February 26, 2008 at 11:48 am

    Thanks for the update Benn.

    Get well soon Lani!

    Good thoughts & energy headed your way

    #8- “we’ll all scrunch up our faces, close our eyes, focus really hard and send all kinds of positive thoughts and energy her way!” – this made me smile

  38. Kara Soluri

    February 26, 2008 at 12:07 pm

    I just met Lani at the Austin tweet-up and she is delightful. I’d been missing her voice on Twitter, so thank you for letting us know. She will have lots of prayers. I had an unexplained episode with vertigo that lasted a month and it was so scary, but it eventually went away. Odds are, Lani’s will too. Please find good specialists, and keep calling until you get someone to see you immediately. The first doctor I saw was an ENT, who didn’t seem to know anything, and just told me to “wait” after all my tests came back negative. If I “waited” as he said I still would be profoundly deaf in one ear. My prayers are that you have all the resources you need to get Lani feeling back to her joy-filled self.

  39. larry cragun

    February 26, 2008 at 12:12 pm

    I am adding my prayers to those ahead of me. We find we are all family aren’t we?

  40. Rocky VanBrimmer

    February 26, 2008 at 12:49 pm

    You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers!!!

  41. Charles Woodall

    February 26, 2008 at 12:56 pm

    Thoughts and prayers from Alabama. I have a good friend that has Meniere’s disease, and Lani’s symptoms sound similar.

  42. Susan Reynolds

    February 26, 2008 at 1:01 pm

    Benn, you both were so wonderful to me Saturday night and I appreciate all the supportive things the community has done for me during my sudden cancer diagnosis and in the two months since. I know that we will pull together in the same way for Lani, brainstorm for her, pray for her, and do whatever we can from here.
    I have known Lani such a short period of time but yet she feels like a dear niece to me and I am heartsick about her sudden illness. Please follow me on twitter so I can DM you,or pass on to Connie Reece a way I can get in touch.
    Tell us what would amust her or make her smile even. If I made a little flipcam video message would she be able to watch it if you brought the laptop over to bed, without getting sick all over again? I can’t do much from here but I want to do what I can.
    Tell her we love her – and we love you for taking such good care of her. And if I thought it would help, tell her I’d send frozen peas 🙂

  43. Shailesh Ghimire

    February 26, 2008 at 1:06 pm

    Lani and Benn,

    How scary! Aimee and I will be praying for you Lani. Keep us posted!

  44. Charleston real estate blog

    February 26, 2008 at 1:27 pm

    Lani and Benn, my thoughts and prayers are with you both.

  45. Teresa Boardman

    February 26, 2008 at 2:04 pm

    Sorry it took me so long to see this. Tell Lani i love her and I hope she will be OK soon.

  46. Daniel Rothamel

    February 26, 2008 at 2:11 pm

    Benn and Lani,

    You are both in my thoughts and prayers. And while that is always true, I shall pray especially hard this time.

    Get well soon, Lani!

  47. Connie Reece

    February 26, 2008 at 2:20 pm

    Benn, I was so upset when I heard from Susan Reynolds that something had happened to Lani. Please, please, if there is anything I can do, let me know. If you need someone to come sit with her for a while I can do that. Above all, I can pray.

    Lani, I’ve known you for such a short while, but I love your sparkling personality. I can tell you are not the kind of person who slows down unless forced to. It’s hard to picture you lying in bed, unable to do things. Keep a positive attitude, have faith, and remember that a lot of people out here are thinking about you and sending best wishes for a full and speedy recovery

  48. Cesar

    February 26, 2008 at 2:26 pm

    Wow, I am so very sorry to hear this happened. Just a few days ago we were all chatting away on Twitter and everything was great. I hope everything is okay and that she feels better real soon. You guys will definitely be in my thoughts.

    Benn, make sure to tell Lani to be ready for coffee as soon as she’s better (or maybe a hot tea). <3 Please keep us all updated with anything you guys need!

  49. mack collier

    February 26, 2008 at 2:29 pm

    So sorry to hear about this and my thoughts and prayers are with you and Lani! Lani all your many friends on Twitter are thinking about you!

  50. Brad Coy

    February 26, 2008 at 2:39 pm

    Benn and Lani,

    My thoughts and prayers our with you as well. Lani your banter is missed through out the web. Looking forward to hearing your voice again soon. My heart felt well wishes to you both. Let us know in SF if there is anything we can do to help.

  51. Jennifer Wilson - Agent Solutions

    February 26, 2008 at 2:48 pm

    Benn and Lani you are in my thoughts and prayers. Hang in there and know you have the support of all of us.

  52. OMG! Our thoughts and prayers are with you guys.

    Rudy + 4

  53. Kelley Koehler

    February 26, 2008 at 2:55 pm

  54. Vicki Lloyd

    February 26, 2008 at 3:17 pm

    More thoughts and prayers here too. Hopefully, it will turn out to be something simple like an odd flu that will just go away soon. Best wishes for a speedy recovery!

  55. Drew Meyers

    February 26, 2008 at 4:03 pm

    Best wishes to you both

  56. Lucretia

    February 26, 2008 at 6:06 pm

    I got here from Susan Reynold’s and read this with my heart sinking – but also with hope.
    I will keep Lani in my thoughts and prayers, and hope that you are as lucky as we were.

    I hope it helps to know that my husband went through something similar a couple of months ago – not to the point of not being able to see, but of the point to having to pull over the car and call an ambulance.
    We met him at the E.R. – that was one of the worst nights of my life, believe me. The ambulance took him across town during rush hour and it took nearly an hour to get there with my 5 y.o. panicking in the back seat and me trying to stay calm.

    Apparently, whatever it was – still no actual diagnosis ever – the extreme vomiting led to throwing his electrolytes and the rest of his system so out of whack that it kept perpetuating and making it worse.
    It sounds very similar to what she went through – and they thought perhaps it was something viral that caused the vertigo and that put everything into overdrive.

    Several IVs and lots of Zofran later, he spent 2 days getting ‘back to normal’ – but he did get back to normal.

    I will pray that this is what Lani is going thru – it’s scary, but no lasting effects other than the memory. Which makes it the best of all possible worlds.


  57. Maureen Francis

    February 26, 2008 at 6:13 pm

    You are both in our thoughts and prayers.

  58. Kim Haynes

    February 26, 2008 at 6:15 pm

    Benn – Wow! Had no idea. Praying for Lani’s complete and speedy recovery!

  59. Matthew Rathbun

    February 26, 2008 at 7:22 pm

    I am sorry that I hadn’t read this earlier. I’ve been de-twittered and blogged for a few days at a church conference and high workload… I am very sorry to see that your sick and truly will pray for you till we hear that your better. I am sure that you’ll be up and picking on me on the Twitter soon enough. GOD BLESS! We need more super nice people like you on

  60. Frances Flynn Thorsen

    February 26, 2008 at 7:22 pm

    Benn and Lani, Sending healing energy and lots and lots of good thoughts and wishes. I hope this passes quickly. Warmest regards.

  61. Athol Kay

    February 26, 2008 at 7:24 pm

    Two things.

    First, I hope Lani gets better and fast.

    Second… I hate to sound grumpy on this point, but seriously

    JUST DIAL 911

    It’s like having a Sam Adams…

    And I do love you guys.

  62. Kristal Kraft

    February 26, 2008 at 7:31 pm

    Thinking good thoughts here in Denver. Hope you are both doing well and feeling the power of the well wishing in the

  63. Mariana and Derek Love Lani

    February 26, 2008 at 7:58 pm

    Lani, You’re stressing me out! You have been on my mind constantly, all day! I love you, Girl! Get better and come back and play with us on Twitter again soon! We all are all praying for you.

  64. TracyTC

    February 26, 2008 at 8:38 pm

    Sending healing love and light from Los Angeles, and hoping all is just a crazy blip.

  65. blair

    February 26, 2008 at 9:01 pm

    Chris and I are praying for a speedy resolution to this. I can only imagine how terrifying this must be for the two of you, I hope the support from us in the virtual world will be at least some comfort. I wish I could bring you guys dinner!

  66. Rebekah

    February 26, 2008 at 9:59 pm

    Please know I’m praying for Lani and all your family. I know you’ll take good care of her.

  67. Ryan Hukill

    February 26, 2008 at 10:55 pm

    Wow guys, I’m so sorry to hear you’re facing such a scary, uncomfortable situation and, as little as it may comfort you to hear, the reality of our prayers is very real. Please keep us posted, and take care of each other hardcore right now. God Bless!

  68. Thomas Johnson

    February 26, 2008 at 11:09 pm

    Linda and I are praying for you both.

  69. John Novak

    February 26, 2008 at 11:24 pm

    Sending good thoughts and prayers your way for a quick and full recovery … and then looking forward to a post with attitude about how you beat this thing!

  70. Andrew

    February 27, 2008 at 1:19 am

    what is your address?

  71. Laurie Manny

    February 27, 2008 at 1:52 am

    How Frightening! Best wishes for a speedy recovery!

  72. JB

    February 27, 2008 at 2:43 am

    Our faith, as is yours, is in the power of prayer. Based on all the previous comments, I’m betting He’s already on it. God Bless you guys…

  73. Ann Cummings

    February 27, 2008 at 4:22 am

    Scary! I hope this passes VERY quickly, and sending good thoughts and wishes to both of you.

  74. Missy Caulk

    February 27, 2008 at 6:03 am

    Benn and Lani, many prayers sent up to you today.

  75. Tracy Gibson

    February 27, 2008 at 6:38 am

    Joining the prayer chain. Praying for healing, strength, and wisdom for the doctors. We love you Lani and Benn.

  76. Robert D. Ashby

    February 27, 2008 at 8:32 am

    I was stuck on an airplane all day yesterday, so I am sorry I have been unable to join the prayer chain until now. Rest assured I will be praying fervently, trusting God to provide answers to you and for a quick healing. You guys have been through so much already and I can only think of Job’s life in comparison.

  77. Doug Quance

    February 27, 2008 at 8:38 am

    Pretty scary stuff… but I have a feeling this, too, will pass.

    You’ve got my prayers.

  78. Cyndee Haydon

    February 27, 2008 at 4:09 pm

    Ben wishing Lani a speedy recovery and you both are in my thoughts and prayers.

  79. Sandy

    February 27, 2008 at 4:16 pm

    Feel better Lani!

  80. Kay aka taxtweet

    February 27, 2008 at 4:48 pm

    Lani, just wanted to let you know that you’re in my thoughts. Kay

  81. Matt Collinge - the 604homesguy

    February 27, 2008 at 6:23 pm

    Just get better!

  82. Mark Harrison

    February 28, 2008 at 10:35 am

    I get in.

    I sit down.

    I come here to check whether there’s an update on how Lani is.

    I’ve been following Lani since the days of RealtorsWives… Hoping and praying she’ll be back blogging, totally tweeting, and generally GenY-ing ASAP.

    Mark in West Sussex, England

  83. Jim Cronin

    February 28, 2008 at 11:52 am

    Oh my, *gasp*
    Was all I could do when I started reading this post. Lani, we’re praying for you. Get well soon. We miss you.

  84. Robin Sing

    May 21, 2008 at 7:06 pm

    Reading through your archives as I have stumbled upon AG and wow..this happened to my aunt 6 months ago. Glad I see from reading the current posts that she is fine now. Must have been very scary

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Tech News

How to build apps without knowing how to code (it’s actually common!)

(TECHNOLOGY) No-code app-building tools are becoming more available to the everyday user, which could lead to more inventive and original apps.



no-code website

“Learn to code” is a common, frustrating refrain often hurled at job-seekers, entrepreneurs, creative professionals, and others. Depending on who’s saying it, the intent could range from well-meaning to willfully hurtful.

It does, in a way, make sense. Computer programming is the foundational language that modern life is built on. And while many people use technology that they don’t understand every day—from microwaves to cars—there’s something a little different about programming. It’s omnipresent for just about anyone, just about everywhere, whether they use it for work or not. And more people use it for work than ever. It’s the single most sought-after skill in the job market.

But “learn to code” isn’t practical for everyone. Not everyone with an app idea has the time to learn how to build an app from scratch, or the money to hire people to do it for them. That’s where the low-code/no-code movement comes in. It’s all about giving the people the tools they need to execute on an idea without having to learn an entire new skill set. When you bake a cake, you probably don’t grind wheat into flour, and when you build an app, you don’t have to start with Python.

No-code isn’t really a new idea.

The fact that computers have menus and icons is the result of early programmers realizing that non-programmers would have to use a computer sometimes. You could look to tools like RPG Maker that let people build their own video games back in 1992. RPG Maker was like a Lego kit for making a video game. And not only is it still going strong, it proved itself prophetic. It turns out that giving people tools and a sand box is a great way to enable creativity.

This has been the long arc of the Internet, too. There was a time when participating in the World Wide Web in a meaningful way meant learning to program. Places like Geocities gave you real estate to set up a website. But you had to build that site yourself. We’ve moved away from that as the Internet commodified. Sites like Facebook and Twitter remove customization in the name of uniformity.

But creative tools persist. Consider “WYSIWYG,” or “What You See Is What You Get” web editors. These are tools like WordPress that reclaimed some of that Internet customization. They give you assets to build a website, and you plug them in where you want.

It’s a middle ground between building from scratch, and having everything handed to you. It’s the sweet spot of accessible creativity. (If you’ve never heard anyone say “WYSIWYG,” that’s probably because these web development tools are so common that they don’t really need a special name anymore.)

Right now, one of the biggest areas of no-code design is in app development. These app dev tools are similar to building a WordPress site. They give you the raw materials, and you customize and assemble them however you want to. Adalo, a no-code platform for building apps, lets your bring assets and ideas to the table, and gives you a framework to organize those ideas into an app.

They aren’t alone. AppOnboard, a no-code software development suite, purchased Buildbox, a leading no-code game development platform. Their combined resources represent a stunning library of assets, full of potential.

What does this mean for coders? Probably not much. Specialized skills are still in high demand. But for the rest of us, a slow democratization of development is taking place, and it’s exciting to watch it take shape.

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Business News

Ageism: How to properly combat this discrimination in the workplace

(BUSINESS) Ageism is still being fought by many companies, how can this new issue be resolved before it becomes more of a problem?



Ageism void

Workers over the age of 55 represent the fasting growing sector in labor. The U.S. Department of Labor estimates that 25% of the labor force will be over age 55 by 2024. A 2018 AARP survey found that over 60% of the respondents reported age discrimination in their workplace. The figure is even higher among older women, minorities, and unemployed seniors. Age discrimination is a problem for many.

Unfortunately, age discrimination lawsuits aren’t uncommon. We have covered cases for Jewel Food Stores, Inc., Novo Nordisk, Inc., AT&T, and iTutorGroup, all alleging age or disability discrimination in some form or fashion. This could be from using vocabulary such as “tenured,” hiring a younger employee instead of promoting a well-season veteran, or pressuring older employees with extra responsibilities in order to get them to resign or retire early.

How can your organization create an age-inclusive workforce?

It is difficult to prove age discrimination but fighting a lawsuit against it could be expensive. Rather than worrying about getting sued for age discrimination, consider your own business and whether your culture creates a workplace that welcomes older workers.

  1. Check your job descriptions and hiring practices to eliminate graduation dates and birthdates. Focus on worker’s skills, not youthful attributes, such as “fresh graduate” or “digital native.” Feature workers of all ages in your branding and marketing.
  2. Include age diversity training for your managers and employees, especially those that hire or work in recruiting.
  3. Support legislative reforms that protect older workers. Use your experience to create content for your website.

Changing the culture of your workplace to include older workers will benefit you in many ways. Older workers bring experience and ideas to the table that younger employees don’t have. Having mixed-age teams encourages creativity. There are many ways to support older workers and to be inclusive in your workplace.

What steps are you taking in your organization to reduce ageism in your workplace?

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Opinion Editorials

Strong leaders can use times of crises to improve their company’s future

(EDITORIAL) In the COVID-19 crisis, some leaders fumbled through it, while others quietly safeguarded their company’s future.



strong leaders

Anthony J. Algmin is the Founder and CEO of Algmin Data Leadership, a company helping business and technology leaders transform their future with data, and author of a new book on data leadership. We asked for his insights on how strong leaders can see their teams, their companies, and their people through this global pandemic (and other crises in the future). The following are his own words:

Managers sometimes forget that the people we lead have lives outside of the office. This is true always but is amplified when a crisis occurs. We need to remember that our job is to serve their teams, to help them be as aligned and productive as possible in the short and long terms.

Crises are exactly when we need to think about what they might be going through, and realize that the partnership we have with our employees is more than a transaction. If we’ve ever asked our people to make sacrifices, like working over a weekend without extra pay, we should be thinking first about how we can support them through the tough times. When we do right by people when they really need it, they will run through walls again for our organizations when things return to normal.

Let them know it’s okay to breathe and talk about it. In a situation like COVID-19 where everything was disrupted and people are adjusting to things like working from home, it is naturally going to be difficult and frustrating.

The best advice is to encourage people to turn off the TV and stop frequently checking the news websites. As fast as news is happening, it will not make a difference in what we can control ourselves. Right now most of us know what our day will look like, and nothing that comes out in the news is going to materially change it. If we avoid the noisy inputs, we’ll be much better able to focus and get our brains to stop spinning on things we can’t control.

And this may be the only time I would advocate for more meetings. If you don’t have at least a daily standup with your team, you should. And encourage everyone to have a video-enabled setup if at all possible. We may not be able to be in the same room, but the sense of engagement with video is much greater than audio-only calls.

We also risk spiraling if we think too much about how our companies are struggling, or if our teams cannot achieve what our organizations need to be successful. It’s like the difference in sports between practice and the big game. Normal times are when leaders game plan, strategize, and work on our fundamentals. Crises are the time to focus and leave it all on the field.

That said, do not fail to observe and note what works well and where you struggle. If you had problems with data quality or inefficient processes before the crisis, you are not fixing them now. Pull out the duct tape and find a way through it. But later, when the crisis subsides, learn from the experience and get better for next time.

Find a hobby. Anything you can do to clear your head and separate work from the other considerations in your life. We may feel like the weight of the world is on our shoulders, and without a pressure release we will not be able to sustain this level of stress and remain as productive as our teams, businesses, and families need us.

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