HR Famous: Calling Yourself “Doctor” in the Workplace & Best Work Christmas Stories

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Dec 21, 2020
This article is part of a series called Podcasts.

In Episode 43 of The HR Famous Podcast, long-time HR leaders (and friends) Tim Sackett, Kris Dunn, and Jessica Lee come together to discuss Christmas shopping, the term “Dr.” in corporate America, and HR Christmas horror stories.

Listen (click this link if you don’t see the player) and be sure to subscribe, rate, and review (Apple Podcasts) and follow (Spotify)!

Show Highlights:

2:00 – Have you finished your Christmas shopping yet? The Lee and Sackett families are done with their completely online Christmas shopping, and KD had to ask his kids to get gifts for Mrs. Dunn.

4:30 – For those of you lucky enough to get the Sackett family Christmas card/letter, Mrs. Sackett is a big fan of throw pillows (as is Mrs. Dunn).

5:45 – First topic of the day: use of the term “doctor.” On Dec. 11, the Wall Street Journal dropped an opinion article being critical of soon-to-be First Lady Dr. Jill Biden’s usage of the term.

7:30 – KD has always been skeptical of the use of “Dr.” in corporate America, away from education. Tim has understood the opinion of the article from a recruiter/corporate standpoint ,as well. However, he understands it applies differently in other industries/academia where it may be more relevant or acceptable.

10:00 – Tim reached out to seven different people he knows who have a doctorate, including MDs, EDDs, and PhDs. Six out of the seven of these people said that they harp on each other about the merit of their degree behind closed doors, but in a professional setting, they’d be expected to be called Dr.

13:00 – JLee is married to a PharmD and in writing, her husband includes his doctorate title. JLee thinks that in writing, being called “Dr.” is justified and totally acceptable, but it may be weird to refer to someone in person as “Dr.”  KD clarifies that JLee’s husband is including letters behind his name, not the Dr. title in front, which JLee confirms.

16:00 – Tim thinks that if Dr. Biden and Joe Biden had switched roles, Joe wouldn’t have had an article like this written about him.

21:00 – KD asks Tim if the term “Dr.” on a resume would throw him off ,and he said that it only bothers him if someone in an interview were to ask to be referred in that way.

27:00 –  KD likes it when people combine “Dr.” with a funny first name like his friend Dr. Chuck.

28:40 – KD asks the crew if they have any dysfunctional workplace Christmas stories. KD tells the favorite from his career about a dysfunctional boss that made him make a “this offer expires at the end of the day” to a VP-level candidate on Christmas Ev. JLee tells a story about how her first HR job required her to be the event planner and she wasn’t 21 yet, so she had to plan events with alcohol without being able to drink.

30:00 – Tim had an employee’s wife complain over email to him about the company gift.

This article is part of a series called Podcasts.