People Operations vs. Human Resources: What’s the Difference (and Why Does It Matter?)

Reading Time: 8 minutes What’s the difference between people operations and human resources? People and humans are the same things, right? Not quite; at least not in the workplace. What started as a difference in branding has become a distinction in what takes precedence. People operations approaches decisions by thinking about team members, then building processes around them. Human […]

Work-Life Integration is a Dangerously Toxic Idea

Reading Time: 6 minutes When was the last time you felt like you really clocked out? When was the last time you took a vacation without being distracted by the buzz of email notifications? If you’re not quite sure of the answers, then you may be suffering from work-life integration. Over the past few years, “work-life integration” has become […]

How to Start Working on Professional Growth with Your Team

Reading Time: 8 minutes “I know professional development is important, but I just don’t know where to start.” I hear this worry from managers all the time. They feel anxious and guilty about not giving more attention to their teams’ professional growth, but they don’t know what they’re supposed to do or how they can make time to do […]

Set Your Team Up for Success: How to Create and Track S.M.A.R.T Goals

Reading Time: 6 minutes At the beginning of each quarter many of us spend some time setting (what we think) are important goals. We dream about what it would be like to achieve them, and for a little while — maybe about a week — we feel re-energized and have hope that success is just around the corner.  Then […]

Mid-Year Reviews: 10 Lessons From 25 Years Of Management

Reading Time: 7 minutes Mid-year review season is here! It’s that magical moment every summer when managers look at their teams and ask, “What the heck have these people been doing for the past six months?” I’ve been a manager for over 25 years, and for most of that time, I’ve hated giving mid-year reviews. They are labor-intensive for […]

Candid Feedback for Managers: Why You Need It and How to Get it

Reading Time: 6 minutes There’s a famous cautionary tale about how important it is for leaders to solicit candid feedback from the people around them: It’s called The Emperor’s New Clothes. The moral of the story is that it’s dangerous (and dangerously easy) for people in authority to insulate themselves from negative feedback, so they wind up looking…a little […]

What Managers Owe Our Teams During Coronavirus

Reading Time: 5 minutes In moments of crisis, being a good manager means recognizing that some things are bigger than work. The coronavirus pandemic is clearly such a crisis. It’s bigger than work, but it has also swallowed work up, along with so many of the touchstones of our everyday lives (for instance, I have been inside exactly two […]

What We Believe

Reading Time: 2 minutes We’re often asked how and why we got started building Uptick. If you’ve done any reading on our website you probably know some of the story, but the real story of Uptick starts with how we think about people and how we think about work.  Many of us at the company were already aligned with […]

3 Big Challenges in Managing Remote Employees (And How I Solved Them)

Reading Time: 6 minutes Everything I know about managing remote employees, I learned the hard way. From my first taste in the ’90s, which nearly scared me off remote workplaces for good, to a recent experience in which I had no choice but to manage from a distance, I’ve had decades of practice figuring out what works and what […]

How Managers Can Win Big by Thinking Small

Cover image for how managers can win big by thinking small blog post

Reading Time: 5 minutes When it comes to motivating a team, managers can choose from a wide range of philosophies to follow and leaders to emulate. Jeff Bezos famously instructed his employees to “wake up every morning terrified.” Steve Jobs believed in the power of grand narratives to inspire his team. Of course, there’s a time and a place […]