This Week's Herman Trend Alert

The Gender Diversity Payoff
 

  The Herman Trend Alert

September 17, 2008

Skin in the Employment Game

Pop culture icons like Brad Pitt and Goldie Hawn have recently acquired tattoos, as have over 70 percent of National Basketball Association (NBA) players. Thus, it is no wonder that over 32 percent of young people aged 25 to 29 and 25 percent of folks aged 30 to 39 have followed suit (Harris Interactive, 2008). A 2006 Pew Research survey found 36 percent of people ages 18 to 25 had tattoos, while a full 40 percent of those 26 to 40 sported them.

As members of the Millennial Generation will readily share, acquiring a tattoo or body piercing is their way of expressing their individuality and their availability to members of the opposite sex. Tattoo parlors from Brazil to Malaysia have seen an upward trend in business over the last ten years, as the Millennials have come of age and can afford these displays of uniqueness.

Diverse workplaces including the military, hospitals, cities, police departments, courts, and many private companies now have policies prohibiting visible tattoos and piercings when employees are on the job. Wise employers spell out their policies regarding "body armor" (tattoos and body piercings) to their prospective workers early in the hiring process.

Most courts have backed up businesses in their right to make appearance demands from employees. However, in 2005 Red Robin Gourmet Burgers paid $125,000 in a court settlement with an employee who challenged the anti-tattoo policy on religious grounds. The case was settled before the jury was to decide whether the policy violated the worker's rights.

Moreover, there is another important consideration for employers. Findings from a research study conducted by University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center indicated a high positive correlation (>20 percent) between people with tattoos and those who test positive for the infection hepatitis C. In fact, according to Robert Haley, MD, "[Tattoos] may have been the largest single contributor to the nationwide epidemic of this form of hepatitis".

As more employers around the world understand the risks, expect them to discourage their workers from acquiring body armor and to encourage their younger employees to express their individuality in less dangerous ways.


© Copyright 1998- by The Herman Group, Inc. -- reproduction for publication is encouraged, with the following attribution: From "The Herman Trend Alert," by Joyce Gioia, Strategic Business Futurist. 336-210-3548 or http://www.hermangroup.com. To sign up, visit http://www.HermanTrendAlert.com. The Herman Trend Alert is a trademark of The Herman Group, Inc."

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Joyce could hardly believe her eyes when she saw her husband's lab results. Her husband, who had recovered from colon cancer had been in chemo for six months, but after that he wasn't getting better. On top of that, his CEA (Carcino Embryonic Antigen) Marker has jumped to 8.5, a cause for concern and more tests. Joyce asked the doctor for 30 days to see what she could do without more tests and treatment. One month to the day later, his CEA was at 4.8; one month after that, it was 4.3 and now six months later, it is 3.8 (copies of all lab results available upon request). And the only thing he did differently was to take a miraculous new food supplement. Somehow, it normalizes body function by bringing energy to the cells. It has been found to lower cholesterol and blood pressure, and even reduce blood sugar to normal levels. For more information, call Joyce at 336.210.3548 or email her at joyce@hermangroup.com.

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