Curating 2021

By now, you’ve likely floated by dozens of messages from family, friends, and business colleagues reminding you what a challenging year 2020 was and hoping for something better in 2021. Maybe you’ve even offered those sentiments yourself. I have, and I was about to send a few more when a light bulb turned on reminding me that everyone already knows that 2020 was challenging and that all but the most sardonic wish for something better this go-round.

But how do we get there? What is the bridge from recognition to hope to that something better? As the bridge builder for this year’s Maine HR Convention, Strategic HR at Mt. Washington, and the Comp Summit, I’m looking at organizations that know how to build those bridges. Here are two of the many groups inspiring me to curate progressive programs that deliver the goods and make a difference for you in 2021.

The Jackson Lab in Bar Harbor, Maine (JAX).
This 90-year-old Maine laboratory, known for its ground-breaking genetics and far-flung medical research impacting treatments for cancers, ALS, AIDS, Alzheimer’,s and pretty much every challenge to the human condition, now has over 2,300 employees sitting at the crossroads of the world’s scientific community. Their scientists (and their mice) have led directly and indirectly to more than two dozen Nobel prizes. Their delivery of a unique transgenic mouse model is enhancing the world-wide research community’s ability to study Covid-19, placing them right on the bridge to 2021.

The Massachusetts-Based Northeast HR Association (NEHRA).
Tracy Burns and her intrepid team make a positive difference on many fronts, particularly in the diversity/inclusion equation and in the aspirations of women seeking HR leadership. Kudos for their annual diversity programs and gala, which are unmatched in HR circles for their combination of content and style. And, kudos for their Executive HR Women’s Program and its in-depth curriculum, building personal development plans, empathic and result-oriented mentorship, and community connections. This attunement to societal challenges places them on the bridge to 2021 as well.

Thank you both for being part of this year’s inspiration and getting me thinking about the hundreds of other organizations, like you, set to do good this year and to help us heal.

Happy New Year All!

Bud Bernstein
Curator for Strategic HR U.S.