Hello!

I have a question I'm really interested in answering: How can an individual thrive within an organization?

Using this question as a starting point has

led me to reflect on my own experiences within organizations, initiate various projects, explore many fascinating ideas on the subject, and pursue a career in human resources. 

This site is where and how I keep track of and reflect upon these things.


If you'd like to get in touch just shoot me a message and I'll respond as soon as I can. 

- Austin

Piedmont 

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Image by Omar Flores

My Experience With Organizations

For me, the term organization means any group of people - from a couple, a family, a class, a team, a school, a company, etc.

Growing up, I always struggled in school. Although I was bright, curious, and full of enthusiasm for learning -  the rules of the organization and the teachers who enforced those rules always felt restrictive. To increase simplicity and output/production - autonomy and individuality were never part of the equation.

I thought this would go away when I entered the workforce, but instead, it persisted.

So I started looking more closely at individuals and organizations - asking questions, experimenting, all in the hope of helping myself, and the people around me, wake up excited to go to work or school. 

Why HR?

Generally, organizations aren't out to make people's lives miserable - no evil villain or plot to uncover. It just boils down to a lack of resources, interest, knowledge, and collaboration. 

And this makes sense. Most couples can attest to the skill and patience needed to maintain a healthy relationship - with many still ending in heartbreak. If it's tough for two people to manage a relationship together, imagine the complexity and demand of 50 or 100 or 500! 

This is how I became interested in HR - the people-centric component within organizations. HR serves as the middleman between individuals and an organization, making sure that each gets what they need. 

And while the role may have stereotypically resembled Toby from The Office, it has evolved to something much more profound. With a combination of organizational psychology, employee experience, personal development and well-being, and much more - HR has the ability to make an organization an amazing place for individuals.

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Personal

As mentioned earlier, I'm always trying to figure out how individuals can best fit into an organization and a family is nothing other than an organization with creative individuals (some tinier than others) seeking autonomy, connection, and competency.  

My family is made up of my wife Julia and our three children Malia, Maddox, and Moby. Spending quality time with them is my favorite thing in the world. Ideally, this consists of - swimming, eating tacos, video gaming, road trips, wrestling, and amusement parks. 

For these times to be an option, it's important that I manage the demands of work and cleanly detach from work outside of working hours. There's a great expression regarding work/life balance that goes - my family gets the best of me, not what's left of me. 

Easier said than done, but how to manage work, family, and the boundary between the two is something I've spent a lot of time thinking about. 

Practices

When I'm not working or with my family, I'm usually spending time on my jiu jitsu practice, both as an athlete and as a youth coach. 

As a practice for development and well-being, I believe it is one of the most effective tools available. Being calm under pressure, problem-solving, going with the flow, conflict resolution, dealing with defeat and ego, are all skills that have greatly improved with my time on the mats. 

The community aspect, relationships built with team members through thousands of hours of practice, has also been incredibly beneficial.

I also engage in daily cold exposure and meditation, as well as copious amounts of time in nature! 

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