Thank YOU!

by Alan Collins

People are getting more selfish every day.

Have you noticed?

In the United States, today is Thanksgiving.

Traditionally, it’s a holiday about thankfulness and family and generosity, a day to remind yourself of all the good things and people in your life.

But that’s changing.

It’s becoming more and more about gluttony.

Not just sharing a meal with your family, but eating until you put yourself in a turkey-induced coma, waiting a few hours, and then doing it again.

Or, if you’re really impatient, you just go into the bathroom and make yourself throw up, so you can eat some more.

Oh, and then there’s shopping. Black Friday, Cyber Monday, the best deals of the year, anywhere. You can finally buy all that stuff you don’t really need because, hey, you’re getting a deal.

Personally, I find it disturbing.

Not the meals or deals, but the change of focus.

Getting and devouring huge amounts of food…seems to be all of what Thanksgiving all about.

Getting a good Black Friday deal…seems to be all of what Thanksgiving all about.

Getting a discount on Cyber Monday…seems to be all of what it’s all about.

Getting, getting, getting.

But what about GIVING?

What about focusing on other people?

What about selflessness and service and gratitude and appreciation?

It’s disappearing.

Not just on holidays but in people in general.

Today, I am going to enjoy a good Thanksgiving meal with my family.

Nothing wrong with that.

However, I will not go shopping and I’m going to try not to think about myself at all.

Instead, I’m spend this day being thankful.

You know, doing what the holiday was originally supposed to be about.

And you know one of the things I’m most thankful for?  


I don’t even know you, but you read my blog.

You share my posts with your HR colleagues.

You buy my stuff.

In exchange, you only asked one thing…

That I share my experiences
in HR, my take on things
…and to tell you the truth.

That’s all.

You don’t expect just standard career advice that you can find all over the internet.  But the brutal, unflinching, hit-me-right-between-the-eyes honesty about succeeding in Human Resources.

And some occasional inspiration.

That’s what I try to do.

And will continue to do.

My goal continues to be to help and give to as many HR professionals as possible.

Sometimes I’m successful.  Sometimes not.  But that’s the goal.

But back to Thanksgiving…

Join me today and stop thinking about yourself… just for today.

Just give.

Instead of making today ONLY about how much turkey you can eat or how many bargains you can grab.  How about make it about how much you can give?

If you’re in another part of the world, all of this Thanksgiving stuff may be meaningless to you, but you can see the selfishness, right?  It’s a growing problem, not just in the USA, but worldwide.

But even if you don’t celebrate Thanksgiving like we do in the US, you’re free to do this as well.

Today, just for this ONE single day, why not chose to be givers instead of getters?

Personally, I’m going to spend the day e-mailing some thank-you notes, texting and calling the people I care about.

That’s the real purpose of the holiday, after all.

Sometimes the most valuable thing you can give people isn’t money or time or information.

It’s simple appreciation.

And giving them yourself.

So let’s do this today.

Just you and me.




Please add your comments below on this article by clicking HERE

About the author: Alan Collins is Founder of Success in HR and the author of the HR best sellers, THE NEW HR LEADER’S FIRST 100 DAYS and UNWRITTEN HR RULES. He was formerly Vice President – Human Resources at PepsiCo where he led HR initiatives for their Quaker Oats, Gatorade and Tropicana businesses.

Feed your network: If you like this article, feel free to share it with your Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter and E-mail contacts by clicking the buttons below…

34 Responses to “Thank YOU!”

  1. Dr Aulakh Says:

    Dear Alan
    Happy Thanks Giving and I personally have a lot to thank you for — The great blog you write,
    The stuff you post on linkedin – we know each other on linkedin

    For the type of person you are – DON’T CHANGE

    Have a great year ahead

  2. OLADAPO Says:

    Thank you Alan for the weekly dose of tit bits. They’ve not only helped me in HR but also in leadership and life. Truly appreciated.

  3. Sophie Says:

    Dear Alan,
    I live in Cameroon and take a lot of pleasure reading your posts who teach me a lot not only on how to be successful in HR but in life in general.

    I do not celebrate Thanksgiving but to me the changes you described also applied to other holidays I celebrate such as Christmas, Easter and so on.

    Thank you for sharing your knowledge and experience and all my best wishes to you.

  4. Joven San Pedro Says:

    Hi Alan,

    Such a good reminder.
    Talking about thanksgiving,I must thank you for being so generous about sharing your insights and wisdom.Actually, you save me a lot of effort in providing occasional guidance to my two kids who are both in the HR field.As rich as they are, your experiences and lessons learned are great nuggets of wisdom that I have the privilege to share with them too.
    Thank you very much.


  5. Diana Says:

    Thank you Alan, Happy Thanksgiving! May you enjoy it in the full with your family and in your best understanding way of its real meaning and purpose, about which you rightfully remind us all.:) Thank you, again!

  6. Yen Pham Says:

    I just want to say Thank you!

  7. Chris Harris Says:

    Best one yet. You write a great blog every week, but this is one of your best. Thank you

  8. Joy Kouns-Lewis, PhD Says:

    Dear Alan,

    You are absolutely right about people forgetting to take this special time to thank people especially thanking someone ourself who have been giving and taking the time to connect and add value to HR practitioners. I personally want to thank you for all that you do for HR professionals. May you continue to be blessed with good health so that you can continue to do what you do.



  9. Jacquie G Adorno Says:

    Alan, Thank you for putting the focus where it belongs, on GRATITUDE. I am thankful for HR professionals like you who give their knowledge, career wisdom, and insights to so many in and out of my network. Sharing your post is both an honor and my pleasure. Keep sharing; I will keep reading.


  10. Sandhya Says:

    Thanks you Alan for sharing thoughts and streamlining my thoughts many a times. You are a clear influencer and I thoroughly enjoy your blogs. I am not sure how I came across your blogs but THNAKS that I did. Thanks for continuously sharing your thoughts and wisdom.

  11. Lim Sok Naty Says:

    Dear Alan

    Happy Thanks Giving and I personally have read not much of your blog & articles. But every time I read them, I feel so good and helpful for HR People like me and other HR Colleagues.

    There are a lot to thank you for, when I continue to read it — The great blog you write.


  12. anne-marie dales Says:

    Thanks for all your wise words Alan – they have often been an inspiration to me. Keep them coming, please :-).

    Best wishes, Anne-Marie

  13. EVE Says:

    Thank you dear Alan, you do a great job to hit us hard with HR realities, keep it up bro!

    Happy Thanks giving day, my country does not have this kind of celebration, but is alright, every day is a thanks giving day for me

  14. Bizu Says:

    Thank you Alan for sharing your thoughts and for all the weekly articles. I wish you a Happy Thanksgiving.

  15. Winnie Says:

    Hey Alan,

    Thanks for sharing. Am not celebrating Thanksgiving today but the spirit of sharing and caring is mutual worldwide. From Kenya- Nairobi, i wish you a warm and fruitful thanksgiving.

    Love your blog big time


  16. Gwendolyn Washington Says:

    Happy Thanksgiving to everyone. Alan much appreciation for your sincere message, and thank you for having the foresight, focus and courage to share your guidance with the HR community through the years. That guidance has now become a great help to me and other HR Professionals as we navigate through these turbulent and toxic times in the Federal HR environment Thanks for being here.

  17. Jan Maharaj-Sookdeo Says:

    May God richly bless you and your family.

  18. Olajumoke Muftau Says:

    Happy Thanksgiving day Alan.
    You are much appreciated for the great works you do in the HR space. You inspire me! FromLagos-Nigeria

  19. susan musumeci Says:

    Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours, Alan. I put aside a bit of time to recall everything I’ve been blessed with, to say thank you to the Creator for all He has done for me and will continue to do for me. I try to reach out to family that is distant with calls or emails. Then tomorrow, I will press on, once again, and look for work.

    Your advice is helpful and often mind-changing. Thanks for those words, Alan

  20. Michele Says:

    Thank YOU, Alan for the messages you provide to us every week. May God Bless you and your family.

  21. Lillie Says:

    Thank you for such a great reminder!! I have been feeling that way too—except my response was gloomy “I was tired of the holiday greed of this season”. Your post inspired and reminded me to change my perspective and to think of a ways I can give and share with others. I’m sure your family and your Thanksgiving will be blessed with your perspective.

  22. Bonnie Nguyen Says:

    Thank you Alan- you continue to give and give. I’ve learnt so much from you and received so much, do on Thanksgiving so will stop and give you and the creator all the praise and glory.

  23. Muhammad Tahir Says:

    Thank you Alan for your insight.

  24. Paul Says:

    Well done Allan. Thanks for sharing your blog – always. Happy thanksgiving.

  25. Daniel Says:

    Thank you Alan for the rich and empowering insights you give in your articles. Much appreciated. I will take up this personal Thanksgiving challenge.

  26. Jacinda Hampton Says:

    Dear Alan,

    Thank You for sharing your HR knowledge and experience through your Blog! It is a source of encouragement as well as a reminder to those of us in the profession to keep our eyes open and to be life long learners to maintain relevance.

    Keep sharing your wisdom, I thank you that you share so generously!! To all of us don’t forget to “ pay it forward” and share what we learn with someone else!

  27. Diana Says:

    Thank you, Alan, for unsparingly giving your valuable Global HR input and for promising to continue doing it!!

  28. Rae Turner Says:

    Thanks ? Alan, a great post and for explaining the true meaning of Thanksgiving. I live in Australia. We don’t traditionally celebrate thanksgiving, but a few comments: yesterday I was invited to a thanksgiving dinner for the first time with a dear HR colleague who’s husband is American. That would have been a lovely opportunity to experience the tradition and celebrate gratitude for a wonderful group of female colleagues who support each other not only in business now, but life. I couldn’t attend as my husband had final surgery for Bowel Cancer (he’s gonna be ok!), so I celebrated Thanksgiving being grateful for that! Our shops and newspapers are just full of sales and advertising for Black Friday! This frenzy has only arisen for us over the past few years. It means nothing to us! I agree with you, it’s greed, commercialisation, it’s not an Australian custom. Here, we are struggling to keep our own traditions and values. We can barely celebrate Christmas any more for political correctness. I spent last night in massive gratitude, thanking dozens of family and friends for their good wishes, love and support over the past 10months. Sadly, it shouldn’t only be when we face a crisis we remember to do this. Thankyou for your ‘straight talking’ honesty! I’m sure you help many folk.

  29. Maina Says:

    Allan, thank you for all the articles you send. they’ve been of great help to my HR career. God bless you with more wisdom and grace to continue being selfless. May your years on earth be many.

  30. Nyemo Says:

    Thank you very much Alan, Your posts has been very helpful in my career and life in general. May God keep increasing wisdom to you so that you keep sharing. Keep the good work and I wish you a blessed year ahead.


  31. Eduardo Villegas Says:

    Hi Alan,
    I enjoyed your articles. They are creative, fresh and never boring. Please keep it up.
    I´m transitioning to HR after 30+ years in finance in multinational pharma so I´m learning a lot from your tips and experience.
    Have a great Christmas and New Year ahead

  32. Emma Says:

    Thank you Alan, for the inspiration for the knowledge for the truth and the authenticity.

  33. Johnstone Munyiri Says:

    I don’t know much about the special thank giving American holiday but I do know I am thankful to you Alan. Not that you taught me an earth shaking idea but your articles remind me of things we learnt, even practiced but left them on the wayside and yet they are relevant every day.
    Thank you and keep them coming. Personally, I am spending the weekend distributing food donations to the famine stricken hungry Kenyans


    I am thankful for you too!