I want to congratulate you on your story about Kenny and Shelley Kramm ["The Heart of a Company," by Leigh Buchanan, June]. You managed to pick up on the nuances of what the family has gone through. It is very nearly my story as well. The birth of the second of my two disabled sons precipitated a chain of events that has taken me places I never would have gone otherwise. When people find out I have a severely disabled son, the response tends to be "Oh, I am so sorry" -- a thought that would never cross my mind. The personal, professional, and spiritual growth that resulted from my sons' situation made me a new person, to the benefit of not only myself and my family, but our clients as well.
David A. Leis, President
It's rare that a business article brings me to tears. I had tears of sadness for Hadley Kramm, whose life is less than it should be; tears of happiness for the people who are living better lives because of her parents' commitment to FlavorX and Hadley's Parks; and tears at the insight that we all have opportunities to create a better world through our work-life pursuits. Thanks for this story about a remarkable family.
Emily Huling, President
Selling Strategies Inc.
The Load Not Taken
I am truly one of the antiheroic leaders described in your June article on leadership ["Why Leadership Is the Most Dangerous Idea in American Business," by Michael S. Hopkins]. There are few times that I am asked to be the leader at my company. But it's been raining so much in Connecticut that we are all on the edge of our edge. This morning, my staff told me that they needed leadership "intervention." I went out to my car for a Bob Marley CD and then to buy white chocolate truffles.
I am now in my 18th year of my staffing business. I learned, within the first five, to surround myself with people who were smarter than I. They're introduced as coworkers, not employees. All treat the company well. The accounting manager believes that the company money is hers and manages her area like an owner. This company is where it is today because of the people that run it. I was simply given an opportunity to start a business.
Lisa Arenberg, President
Advanced Placement Inc.
Doors Shut on Human Resources?
I could write a book on my exceptions to Patrick J. Sauer's "Open-Door Management" in June, teased as "Fire Your HR Department" on the cover. Even though the CEO of TechTarget has an open-leave policy, he must comply with the Family and Medical Leave Act, or he could get his pants sued off. And if he offers flextime to nonexempt employees, guess what, another potential suit. When are people eligible for FMLA? What are nonexempts? To find out, hire an HR department.
Stephen Mace, HR Manager
House of Corrections
In the June table of contents, we miscalculated the age of the Jesuit order of priests. The group is 469 years old.
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