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The hardest thing about being a manager

I've been lax this week about blogging as--like all of corporate America--we've been going through budget cuts and I've spent every waking moment since last Friday (the weekend included) working on trimming costs. Years ago, a former Shape editor in chief (and my mentor), Barb Harris, gave me a framed quote that sits right by my computer. It is these words that have helped me through this current situation (and other tough situations): 'The highest courage is to dare to be yourself in the face of adversity. Choosing right over wrong, ethics over convenience, and truth over popularity...these are the choices that measure your life. Travel the path of integrity without looking back, for there is never a wrong time to do the
right thing.'
 
In this day, it seems--from the news--that no one in corporate America has any integrity or ethics. From billion-dollar Ponzi schemes to managers siphoning money from their company's bottom line, many people don't seem to care about doing the right thing: they seem to only want to enhance their own personal pocketbook. Then, when that said company needs to cut costs, the first thing to go is the hardworking employees who, day in and day out, give their time and energy to help make the company what it is.
 
Just like everyone in America is tightening his or her belts when it comes to spending at home...so too are we at our magazine: it's simply the fiscally responsible thing to do. In this situation, I refused to put more people into the unemployment line. So I made the cuts elsewhere (for example, some articles that were planned for later on in the year won't be running; doing so helped save jobs).
 
At Shape, we aim to help you live better lives, but my goal--as editor in chief of Shape--is to make sure that the lives of Shape staffers is healthy and balanced as well. And sometimes, as a manager, you need to take the road less traveled to ensure this happens.
 
One daily change: Make sure every decision you make allows you to go home at night and say: 'I made the right decision' or 'I did the right thing'. At the end of the day, that will give you a greater sense of self-worth and happiness than anything else.
 

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