Recent Posts

Summer Days ’17

A few memories summer 2017: Celebrated my 40th birthday with a bike ride in wine country and a wine tour with family and friends. It was perfect and lovely. We made our annual trek to the Outer Banks. I could only make it for a few days due to a […]

On Working Motherhood

Being a working mom is messy and uneven. Somedays your employer wins the coin toss and your children lose out. It is a constant back and forth. The pendulum never really stops swinging. Over the years I’ve learned to relax into the rhythm of the pendulum and focus on creating […]

Notes on Paris Trip

Repeat after me, vacationing is self-care. You have to jump off the work treadmill at least once each quarter. To that end, I recently spent 10 days in Europe, 5 of which were spent in Paris and the remaining days in Barcelona.     Quite frankly, planning this trip gave me […]

A Brief Break in Annapolis

As a working mother and wife, it is so easy to slip into a routine of who is making dinner, picking up the kids from sports practices or putting in late hours in the office that you forget to make time for your partner. This weekend we threw our routine […]

Grab a newspaper and a cup of tea

I’ve always been an avid print newspaper reader but I got away from it in recent years and have been primarily catching up on news listening to NPR and spending my free time reading my favorite bloggers. Lately, I’ve been hungry for hard news beyond what a well-respected blogger could […]

On bedtime and morning habits

Recently, I’ve been making a few small changes to my daily routine to improve the likelihood I will go to bed earlier and wake up more refreshed. The returns has been tremendous. My cell phone is now banned from my bedroom in the evenings. This is key. I’ve been using social […]

On Letting Go of Proving Yourself

The most successful people I know shy away from constantly proving themselves. In fact, they are usually the person in the room entirely comfortable in their skin daring you to accept them as they are. Granted they are typically more seasoned professionals and have been around the block, but you […]

Notes on Grounding Activities as the World Shifts

I am not alone in feeling a bit topsy turvy since inauguration. As if this event was not enough, it was immediately followed up with daily assault on our emotions via executive orders. While my committment to being actively engaged in the direction of this country is at an all […]

February Career To-Do’s

Managing your career should be tackled in small daily and monthly actions for long-term success. Notes From HR monthly to-do’s are actions you can do in small bites. February is ripe with opportunities to lose the fire in the belly spirit the month of January swept in. There’s something about the month […]

Notes from the Women’s March

My oldest daughter’s college basketball team played against Drexel University last weekend, so I found myself in Philly for both the game and the Women’s March. Quite honestly I went to the March out of curiosity. I was ambivalent about the March when I heard about it months ago via […]

January Career To-Do’s

Managing your career should be tackled in small daily and monthly actions. With this in mind, I will be sharing to-do items for each month. Our Notes From HR to-do’s are simple things you can do to take things up a notch. January To-Do’s Start the year off on the […]

2016 Highlights

My mantra for 2016 was “less talk, more action!” I committed to moving forward with projects that I had been talking about for years: helping people of color navigate workplaces and giving back to my community in a meaningful way. In retrospect, it has been gratifying watching the seeds planted […]

Travel Adds Value to Our Career Psyche

Traveling adds tremendous value to our career psyche, not just in terms of relieving stress and recharging but boosting our career game. Years ago I made a pact to travel outside of the U.S. at least once a year, This year, my wanderlust bug led to South Africa and the […]

I Got a Promotion!

I got a promotion today, and I am over the moon. Promotions are far and in between when you are near the top of the ladder in your chosen profession, especially when you are already the head of the department. So it feels good to be elevated to Senior Director […]

Table Etiquette Do’s and Don’ts

In part one, we covered the function of tableware and place setting. Read it here. In this post, we will cover the do’s and don’ts of business etiquette. I hope this post will take the hand-wringing out of that sometimes nerve-racking business dinner. Let’s be frank, people will judge you by […]

Notes on Formal Dinner Table Setting

The season for celebrations is upon us. Over the course of the next few weeks or your career in general, you will be invited to formal business dinners. A formal business dinner can be stressful if you are unfamiliar with table etiquette and trying to be a good conversationalist with […]

Afrigens Docu-series is Finally Here

We’re excited to finally be launching the first season of AfriGens @Work! After an adventurous and profound experience interviewing, filming, editing and lots of behind-the-scenes work, we are ready to share our docu-series with the world. Look out for the first episode on Sunday, November 20, 2016. Follow our YouTube […]

Career Lessons from this Laughable Election

It’s no news that this election year is riddled with gutter politics. As I watch the race for highest office in America, and arguably the world, I find actions and responses from both candidates laughable and cringe-worthy at times. On the flip side, these candidates are giving us valuable lessons […]

Start a Career Journal

There are two kinds of people in this world. Those who like to journal and those who don’t. I fell in the latter category until I discovered career journaling. I learned that I’m one of those people that had to have a specific topic to write about and only then […]

The Minimalist Mindset for Career and Life Success

I’ve been tinkering with minimalism lately and it is making a profound impact on my mindset. Minimalism is the act of stripping away excess stuff from your life and getting off the vicious consumer ferris wheel. We’ve all fallen under the spell of our social media feeds with inspiring outfits, […]

Five Work Relationships You Need to Thrive

No one can do the work of being a working mom by themselves. Try adding these people into your life to help take the load off. Back-to-school season is in full swing. You’re probably stretched thin making sense of school supply lists and coaxing your little people back into an […]

Introducing AfriGens Docu-Series

Study hard. Go to college. Become a doctor. Don’t forget where you came from. These four mantras have been drilled into the hearts and minds of first and second generation Africans since childhood. For a majority of African immigrants, their life savings was used to make the trip to America, […]

Foolproof Advice on Back-to-School & Motherhood for Afrigen Moms

The back-to-school fervor is in full effect. If you are AfriGen mother like me, you are probably telling yourself this is the year you’re going to be organized and on top of it all. Afterall, you’re raising second- or third-generation African children in the West and these little people have […]

The Pressures of Being the Golden Egg as a Immigrant Child

Make no mistake about it AfriGens, we are all golden eggs. The moment our parents left Africa to forge a new life in the West, we became their golden eggs. Even though this expectation is prevalent in our culture, the pressure is even more on this side of the pond. […]

Notes From HR on Joblogues

Notes from HR on the podcast Joblogues discussing returning to work after tragic events such as the deaths of Alton Sterling, Philando Castille, and the five policemen killed in Dallas. Listen to get a few nuggets on this very important topic. While you are at it, catch up other amazing […]

Soft Skills for the ‘Technical-Know-How’ AfriGen

AfriGens win the gold when it comes to technical skills. We are ‘technical-know-how babies’ (where my Nollywood fans at??) when it comes to hard skills that are easy to quantify like reconciling an account ledger or determining the right medication formula for a patient. But when it comes to soft […]

So you want to learn how to network. But are you interesting?

There are a number of how to network articles, podcasts, and courses out there. I am going to let you research the ins and outs of networking by visiting the oracle that is Google. Before you run out to follow the ins and outs of networking per Google. Let’s discuss […]

Returning to work after tragic events

It’s Monday and the new workweek beckons even though we are still finding our footing after the tragedies of last week. Many of us spent the weekend connecting with families, marching in protests, participating in healing self-care activities or clicking the unfollow button for many “friends” on social media networks […]

Ten TED Talks for the Career Focused Afri-Gen

Sometimes we need reminders of our Jollof-powered potential. Here are ten TAL-approved career inspiring TED Talks to help you through the workweek. Zain Ejiofor Asher, Trust Your Struggle Nigerian Zain Ejiofor Asher had a hardcore African upbringing. Her story of her Nigerian tiger-mom’s determination for her to get into Oxford […]

Now blogging at This Afropolitan Life

We are taking this show on the road and we are now blogging at www.thisAfropolitanLife.com. Notes from HR will now be part of This Afropolitan Life. You will continue to read great tips on being successful at work. Be sure to visit www.thisafropolitanlife.com/career to subscribe and follow Notes from HR […]

You want to be a badass? Don’t take the exit

I recently celebrated a significant birthday. One of those birthday years that make you feel old, but at the same time makes you realize that you are a badass because you have accomplished some major stuff. Rather than focus on the two gray hairs that had sprung in my hair […]

Why African Immigrant Students Keep Winning

Published on Face2Face Africa  During the recent graduation season, a number of African immigrant students were lauded for receiving scholarships to Ivy League institutions, graduating in significant numbers and leading the pace in graduation levels compared to other immigrant groups. There are reasons why first-generation African immigrants are winning the […]

First Generation African Notes

For the first time in my adult life, I am witnessing first generation Africans flourish in America. When I look at my social media feed, I see dynamic pictures of African entrepreneurs, thought leaders, artists, doctors, students, models all pursing their dreams and in some cases living their dreams. These […]

Reconnect with What Makes You Happy

Now that it’s officially summer, our blazers and wool office attire have been pushed to the back of the closet. We can all agree that summertime is about being a little less hurried—especially since tons of folks are in and out of the office so the pressure at work is […]

How growing up African shaped my career: key qualities that make immigrant children successful at work

My parents immigrated to the U.S. from Sierra Leone in the mid 1980s under President Reagan’s amnesty program. Before then, my family had fled Ghana for Sierra Leone during the coup of 1981. We exchanged our affluent middle-class lifestyle in West Africa for the American dream. Like many immigrants of […]

Let’s talk salary negotiations

As published on Matermea.com Most people, but especially women and minorities, aren’t very good at negotiating a good starting salary. For some, negotiating a salary and asking for more money is a hand-wringing, sweaty palm, stuttering mess of a process. It’s natural to be nervous, but I encourage you to […]

Building your career brand

What is career brand?  Your career brand is your identity at work. It is what you are known for and what makes you memorable.  Additionally, it is a promise of the value you have to offer to your colleagues and the company. Today’s job market is very competitive, so having […]

Reasons why you don’t get along with your manager

There’s so much career advice out there on how to handle a difficult manager but very few actually give you the honest truth on why you may be struggling with your manager in the first place. Here are things you may doing that could be straining your relationship with your […]

Spring clean your career

Spring is here! There is nothing more renewing in the spring than cleaning out the closets and putting away the heavy coats and sweaters that held us down during the colder days. Just as Springtime beckons us to unburden ourselves with things that no longer serve us in the warmer […]

Notes on being a better manager

Quick hits on being a better manager beginning this Monday morning. Drink some coffee and shoot for 5 out of the 10 tips below and you will be well on your way to being a good manager. 1. Pencil in intentional one-on-one time with your direct report. Put it on […]

Job search tips for 2016 graduates

  College graduation is around the corner for 2016 grads, and March is a perfect time to kick your job search into gear if you haven’t already started. March is a great time to start your career search for two key reasons: job openings become available during spring and companies […]

Showing up at work

Definition of showing up: bringing all of your positive energy, warmth, attention and sense of passion to a given situation. I’ve seen talented employees lose a lot of ground because of their inability to bring a sense of personality, passion, laser focus and high energy to the workplace.  I get […]

Overcoming Imposter Syndrome

  As published on Mater Mea  FINDING YOUR CONFIDENCE AS A PERSON OF COLOR IN HOMOGENOUS WORKPLACES CAN BE DIFFICULT, BUT IT ISN’T IMPOSSIBLE. Open any popular business magazine and you’ll find at least one article lamenting the lack of diversity in the workplace. The statistics are hard to take […]

My Mantra for 2016

I sidestepped the zeal of creating an expansive new year resolutions this calendar year. Instead I opted to set an intention, a mantra for the year. That mantra is “less talk, more action.” Basically, doing all the shit I’ve been talking about for decades. For years I’ve come up with […]

Office tips for first-timers

My top tips for recent college grads working in an office environment for the first time: 1. Put your phone away and only use it during lunch hour. Being on your phone makes you look unfocused and uncommitted. 2. Complete tasks given fast and with little errors. As a manager, […]

Tough Interview Questions and How to Nail Them

I am often asked for the best answers to tough interview questions. Here are a few tough questions and tips on how to nail them! Tell me about yourself? Don’t start with “I was born in….” “I am from…” it is not helpful information no matter how much the interviewer smiles […]

Sit in Silence

Mindfulness. Meditation. Silence. These words all mean the same thing but lately my preference is to use the word silence. Silence is accessible and simple to wrap your mind around in a world where we are constantly bombarded with information. Creating intentional moments of deep silence is quite effective in […]