March 27, 2018

A Lesson in Not Taking Things Personally

“I admire Americans because they can criticize each other’s work, but the next day still work together and go out to lunch together.” 

This was something an Indian executive exclaimed when I asked the team, “What do you like about American work culture?” 


Learning to not get a broken heart (take things
personally) at work is a skill that requires empathy.
The executive went on to say, “Here in India, we shy away from giving negative feedback even if it is about a work task because we don’t want to hurt someone else’s feelings. We know they will take it personally. If we criticize someone else’s work, I doubt I’d be able to eat lunch with that colleague for a long time…. We Indians take things very personally.” 

While I am sure that there are always exceptions to every rule, meaning some Indians will not take things personally and there will be Americans who do take things personally (and can’t eat peacefully with their colleague the next day), in my experience working in Kerala, there were many instances where giving feedback [even] in a confidential setting that could be considered even a slight bit negative was frowned upon. 

Many times in the training sessions, team members would bring up this topic and ask me tips for not being able to take things personally. Instead of answering this question, we’d have a group discussion on this to see what other’s ideas were on this topic. However, for purposes of this blog, I’d like to say one way I have learned not to take things [so] personally is by trying to see things from other person’s point of view. We call this empathy. I want to share an example of how I tried to apply this in my life recently. It was not a work related incident, but this kind of thing could happen at work.

The story goes as follows…. I was walking on the University of Utah campus to a class I was attending. A young man was pushing a cart on the sidewalk picking up placard signs. These signs look similar to the ones in the photo below. He was using a pushcart, like the one pictured below to transport the signs. When I approached him, he had two of the signs sitting on the top of the pushcart. He was going to pick up a third. He stopped on the corner next to a cross walk to pick up the third sign. After folding the sign, he picked it up and tried to place it on top of the other two signs. But, the pushcart was unstable, and the whole thing fell over. I was crossing the cross walk as this happened and thought to myself, “Should I help him?” 



As I got closer to the pushcart, I smiled at him, instinctively held the signs on top of the cart, and asked, “Can I help you….. it may help it from falling….” Actually, as I was saying the second part (it may help it from falling), he was saying something to me. But since I was talking I couldn’t hear that clearly, and kept holding on to the cart as he was picking up the third sign. I looked at him again. His eyes were ablaze and he was scowling at me and retorted, “I got it.” 

I suddenly felt horrible. I mean I was just trying to help him and why was he being so fowl with me? I said, “Sorry,” let go of the cart and signs and let him carry on. I thought to myself immediately that karma will fix this… but I was shaken that the time I tried to help someone, that person clearly did not want to have anything to do with it at all. His nasty look and tone of voice really bothered me, and actually, hurt me. 

I was taking this personally. 

But, was it worth it? I mean I do not even know this guy. But, we are both humans and why did he have to be so mean [to me]? Then, I thought of this corporate training session, and wondered, “How can I stop taking this so personally? It’s really not worth it.” Though I was upset….. 

First, I admitted I was upset….secondly, I started thinking about it from his perspective. These are the questions, answers and thoughts I had when I started to look at it from what could have been his perspective: 

1. It’s already embarrassing for me that I dropped these signs. Was she being sarcastic or condescending by giving me help?
2. Why doesn’t the café give me the right equipment to pick up the signs? This pushcart clearly isn’t the best thing for me to use to pick up these signs.
3. The person who usually does this is not here today, so I have to do this “crappy” work.
4. Why do we have these stupid placard signs anyhow?
5. I just want to go home…..
6. Of all the stupid things to do.. pick up these stupid signs… and I got a really bad grade on my midterm. (Midterms were a few weeks ago.)
7. I have a lot of homework to do, and here I am picking up these stupid signs for minimum wage. I can’t wait to graduate!
8. Why do I have to have these stupid grunt work jobs just to have extra money? I am meant for better!
9. Every single time I come to pick up this sign, the entire cart topples. I can’t take this anymore.

I can keep thinking of other things that he may have been thinking that led him to scowl at me. And, that scowl had nothing to do with me other than the fact I happened to be the person there at that moment he was acting fowl. Maybe later when he thought about how he acted, he could have felt bad. I do want to believe most people are good….

This still did continue to bother me a little. But the more I thought about it from his perspective, felt empathy for his situation (even if I was dreaming it up), the better I felt about it.

Can we do this for our own colleagues, counterparts and clients at work?

It’s possible, though I am sure the context differs from doing this exercise with a complete stranger like I did. Let me know if this kind of exercise works for you. Share your experience in the comments below.


Author, Jennifer Kumar, provides coaching, one-on-one mentoring and live online training to your remote team, augmented staff and offshore teams in India. Contact us for more information. 

Related Posts: 
The mask makes or breaks the man (a story in how we mask ourselves so others don't see the real us) 
Body Language in the US Office 
Lessons from a module on Conflict Management 
How to handle it when someone is always being negative 

Phtoto credits: Broken heart, Stephanie @flickr, pushcart, faswva dot org, sign, build a sign dot com.

March 21, 2018

Helping U.S. Facing Professionals Gain Confidence in Written Business English

Writing emails or, sometimes even sending text messages and chats can be problematic for some offshore team members who were never taught how to craft good messages in business English.
Guidelines for use of punctuation
is part of a style guide.

Many of those I have coached grew up in an educational system that may not have taught English grammar rules and structure. Even if the school or college was in English medium, some or many students would have 'mugged up' answers on test papers throughout school and college. Memorizing and rewriting sentences, paragraphs and essays is not the same as learning how to write sentences on one's own. Many who grew up in this system did not learn how to structure their thoughts in English. Hence, some or much of what is said could have a lot of Mother Tongue Influence (MTI)

How does MTI factor into the written language? 
Though, most people have heard about MTI in relation to accent or spoken English, here I am referring to MTI in language structure. Those who never really learned how to write in a second language, may write sentence in their second language in the structure of their first language. To complicate matters in some areas of India where I trained, people have confided t me that they neither felt totally literate in their mother tongue or in English. In their mother tongue, many noted, they could speak and read, but writing was a challenge, while in English speaking and reading were easier than writing. 

If this describes you or team members on your international, offshore teams, there is help available. 


Many client facing individuals I have coached go to Google for help. I would not always recommend this because we don't always know the reputation of the site - and again, it's not ideal to cut and paste sentences, paragraphs or entire messages. I know from coaching professionals who face this that their literacy level is high enough to talk and write reasonably well in English, but the problem is that confidence is lacking. (This is because as a main criteria to get coached though Authentic Journeys, one needs basic English skills.) 

In many cases, some I have coached who have Googled (read: cut and pasted) emails or answers to assessments, can actually write this better on their own if they had patience and confidence to do so. The confidence is often lacking because of over thinking when it comes to 'grammar.' And, in many times, 'cut and paste' was recognized because of two reasons, one being the cut and pasted text clearly was not in the voice or personality of the person submitting the information and, at times, the grammar was not good. In fact, if the person tried to answer themselves (taking less time than Googling it), the grammar would have been better. I am continually surprised how often this happens.

What are the other options?
In some companies I have consulted in India, we have implemented a few different strategies.

At the interview stage: During the interview, conduct an English Fluency Assessment. Typically, the best assessments will assess language structures that will be closest to how English will be used on the job. So, email assessments for typical client interactions is one example of this. I have been instrumental in rolling out a few of these programs at different start ups.

On the job: Have hard or soft copy resources available for the employees who need it, either on the internal cloud drive or physical books. If some resources are Internet based, assure they are reputable sources, not just Googled answers.

Soft Copy Resources for Business English Writing: 
Websites. Below, see a list of reputable websites that can help with English grammar rules.

Soft and or Hard Copy Resources for Business English Writing:

These are soft copies that will be hard to print out, refer online:
The Purdue Owl, which is a Purdue University online style guide based on the Chicago Style guide.
Virginia Tech Style Guide 
Voice and Tone - MailChimp's Customer Facing Interactive Tone and Style Guide

These soft copies can be printed out into hard copies or downloaded to your local drive: 
Apple Style Guide 
IBM Corporate Style Guide for Business Writing 
The I Love New York Tourism Style Guide

What kinds of tips are in style guides? 
We can learn how to use English punctuation- like these posts on using the full stop (period), exclamation mark or question mark
How to brand e-mail IDs for impact. 
Dos and Don'ts for email (and text or instant messaging) - tailored to your company's need
How to structure an email for effective communication (free, online e-learning program here)

Who can help my company or start up with creating a style guide? 
Authentic Journeys has worked with a few companies/professionals to create individualized, tailored style guides. Some style guides also helped with rules and guidelines for Software User Manuals. 

Contact us for more information on what is in this blog today! 

Jennifer Kumar, author of this post also provides individualized coaching sessions to your offshore team anywhere in the world over the Internet.



Other keywords: "IT Staff Augmentation" "Remote Team in India" "staff augmented team" "managed services provider"

March 20, 2018

What does "Out of the Box" mean?

Some years ago I asked this question to a room full of engineers during a training program on business writing in Kottayam, India. We were learning about corporate jargon and idioms used at work. 

Meaning 1: No Changes, Can Be Used As Is Immediately 
"Our software is so amazing! It will ease all
your worries as it can be used right out of
the box. Easy set up, easy to go!"
One of the software engineers raised her hand and said, "It means to use a software straight from the box without customizing it." 

Possibly, for this first definition, we can expand the phrase to "out of the box feature" or "out of the box software." Basically, this means using the product straight off the shelf, or out of the store or manufacturer without making any changes. 

As I am not a software engineer and had no engineering or computer science background, I was taken off-guard by this, as I had not heard of it before. But, it made total sense. 

"I like it!" I said, "Let's add this to the list of meanings for this idiom. However, there is another meaning to this you may encounter when talking to American clients... anyone have any guesses?" 

Meaning 2: To Make Changes, Creative Thinking Is Needed 
Ironically, the meaning I was looking for seems to be opposite of the above meaning. If the above meaning means using something straight out of the package without changes or customizations- it's easy and no 'thinking' is really required to get the job done as it should happen as per the instructions that come with the box (easier said than done!). However, the meaning I was getting to was, "thinking beyond, thinking creatively, thinking outside the parameters of the given instructions, maybe even thinking about how to customize or tweak something to personalize it for a business or an individual." 

Possibly, here, we can expand the phrase to "out of the box thinking" or "thinking outside the box." 

Dictionary Definitions 

Out of the box (feature) 
An out-of-the-box feature or functionality (also called OOTB or off the shelf), particularly in software, is a feature or functionality of a product that works immediately after or even without any special installation without any configuration or modification. It also means that it is available for all users by default, and are not required to pay additionally to use those features, or needs to be configured. (source: Wikipedia) 
Used to refer to the immediate usability or functionality of a newly purchased product, typically an electronic device or a piece of software. 
  • ‘most laptops come with wireless capability out of the box’ 
  • ‘console games need to be good to go right out of the box’ 
  • ‘the product is designed as an out-of-the-box portal for the medium to large enterprise’ (Oxford Dictionary
Out of the box [thinking] / To think outside the box 
To think outside the box is to look further and to try not thinking of the obvious things, but to try thinking of the things beyond them. (Wikipedia) 
Read another, more philosophical view of this phrase at Desi Highway

Use in Spoken English 

Out of the box (software) 

I will look for our readers, the software engineers, to share some example sentences using 'out of the box' in the comments below.

A guess on my part may be, "We have a solution for you that you can use right out of the box! It's easy, no customizations are needed, you can download it and log in immediately, and it's affordable!" 

Out of the box (without change) 
This post was inspired by a line I read in an article reviewing different kinds of hiking boots. This sentence references problems with tying the boot, it says, "You can solve this by upgrading the laces and taking care when tightening, but it’s not something you should have to deal with out of the box." 

They also wrote this about a boot they seemed to like, "It's well built, extremely comfortable right out of the box, and can handle just about anything you can throw at it." 

The authors used the term 'out of the box' quite a few times in this article. It can be read here. (This is not a product placement. This article is being used for the sole purpose of example.) 

Out of the box (thinking) 
"We have tried all the usual solutions. Anyone have any out of the box ideas?" 
"We can really use some out of the box thinking on this one!" 
"Team, thinking outside the box is important to not repeating the mistakes we made in the past!" 

Conclusions 
When researching this phrase, 'out of the box,' it seems that there are even more meanings in Australia and New Zealand. There may also be variations on this phrase in the U.K. Try your best to follow the conversation to get the entire context of the conversation, this will help to get the meaning of the idiom they are using. 


Author, Jennifer Kumar provides out of the box, ready to use and customizable virtual training solutions to build virtual, international teams. Contact us for more information. 

Related Posts 
Difference between slang, buzzwords, corporate and industry jargon 
"Putting our heads together" a good idiom for brainstorming or thinking outside the box (this post also has a downloadable worksheet with a list of corporate idioms) 
When to use 'advice' vs 'advise' 

Image credit: box with colors, opensource.com at flickr, girl peeking outside a box, trafficbuilder.com

March 19, 2018

U.S. State Birthdays- Sorted by Year and Date Formed, State Name, Time Zone

While July 4, 1776 was the birthday of the nation we know as the United States of America, did you know that not even one state was officially a U.S. state until 1787? 

Sixteen (16) states were formed between 1787 and 1796 (before 1800). Twenty-nine (29) states were formed in the 1800s, while the remaining five (5) were formed in the 1900s (1907-1959). The last state formed in the continental United States was Arizona (Feb. 14, 1912). Hawai'i and Alaska became states in 1959. 

In modern American culture, if you have the 25 cent piece or quarter, look on the back. There are some quarters with states on the back. Some people collect them, while others just like to see the pictures and information on the back that depict each state. 



If you'd like to know more about the state's birthdays in terms of the year they entered the Union, see the chart below. 

State Birthdays Grouped Based on Birth Year 


State Birthdays Sorted by Birth Year
State
Abbreviation
Birthdate
Birth Year
Capital City
Delaware
DE
Dec. 7
1787
Dover
New Jersey
NJ
Dec. 18
1787
Trenton
Pennsylvania
PA
Dec. 12
1787
Harrisburg
Connecticut
CT
Jan. 9
1788
Hartford
Georgia
GA
Jan. 2
1788
Atlanta
Maryland
MD
Apr. 28
1788
Annapolis
Massachusetts
MA
Feb. 6
1788
Boston
New Hampshire
NH
Jun. 21
1788
Concord
New York
NY
Jul. 26
1788
Albany
South Carolina
SC
May. 23
1788
Columbia
Virginia
VA
Jun. 25
1788
Richmond
North Carolina
NC
Nov. 21
1789
Raleigh
Rhode Island
RI
May. 29
1790
Providence
Vermont
VT
Mar. 4
1791
Montpelier
Kentucky
KY
Jun. 1
1792
Frankfort
Tennessee
TN
Jun. 1
1796
Nashville
Ohio
OH
Feb. 19
1803
Columbus
Louisiana
LA
Apr. 30
1812
Baton Rouge
Indiana
IN
Dec. 11
1816
Indianapolis
Mississippi
MS
Dec. 10
1817
Jackson
Illinois
IL
Dec. 3
1818
Springfield
Alabama
AL
Dec. 14
1819
Montgomery
Maine
ME
Mar. 15
1820
Augusta
Missouri
MO
Aug. 10
1821
Jefferson City
Arkansas
AR
Jun. 15
1836
Little Rock
Michigan
MI
Jan. 26
1837
Lansing
Florida
FL
Mar. 3
1845
Tallahassee
Texas
TX
Dec. 29
1845
Austin
Iowa
IA
Dec. 28
1846
Des Moines
Wisconsin
WI
May. 29
1848
Madison
California
CA
Sept. 9
1850
Sacramento
Minnesota
MN
May. 11
1858
St. Paul
Oregon
OR
Feb. 14
1859
Salem
Kansas
KS
Jan. 29
1861
Topeka
West Virginia
WV
Jun. 15
1863
Charleston
Nevada
NV
Oct. 31
1864
Carson City
Nebraska
NE
Mar. 1
1867
Lincoln
Colorado
CO
Aug. 1
1876
Denver
Montana
MT
Nov. 8
1889
Helena
North Dakota
ND
Nov. 2
1889
Bismarck
South Dakota
SD
Nov. 2
1889
Pierre
Washington
WA
Nov. 11
1889
Olympia
Idaho
ID
Jul. 3
1890
Boise
Wyoming
WY
Jul. 10
1890
Cheyenne
Utah
UT
Jan. 4
1896
Salt Lake City
Oklahoma
OK
Nov. 16
1907
Oklahoma City
Arizona
AZ
Feb. 14
1912
Phoenix
New Mexico
NM
Jan. 6
1912
Santa Fe
Alaska
AK
Jan. 3
1959
Juneau
Hawaii
HI
Aug. 21
1959
Honolulu

State Birthdays Grouped Based on Birth Date (Month and Date) 
Do you want to keep track of the state birthdays based on the yearly calendar? The chart below has organized the states based on the month and day they were formed (not year). 


Sorted by Birthdate (Number format is MM/DD)
State
Abbreviation
Birthdate
Birth Day
Birth Year
Capital City
Georgia
GA
1/2
Jan. 2
1788
Atlanta
Alaska
AK
1/3
Jan. 3
1959
Juneau
Utah
UT
1/4
Jan. 4
1896
Salt Lake City
New Mexico
NM
1/6
Jan. 6
1912
Santa Fe
Connecticut
CT
1/9
Jan. 9
1788
Hartford
Michigan
MI
1/26
Jan. 26
1837
Lansing
Kansas
KS
1/29
Jan. 29
1861
Topeka
Massachusetts
MA
2/6
Feb. 6
1788
Boston
Arizona
AZ
2/14
Feb. 14
1912
Phoenix
Oregon
OR
2/14
Feb. 14
1859
Salem
Ohio
OH
2/19
Feb. 19
1803
Columbus
Nebraska
NE
3/1
Mar. 1
1867
Lincoln
Florida
FL
3/3
Mar. 3
1845
Tallahassee
Vermont
VT
3/4
Mar. 4
1791
Montpelier
Maine
ME
3/15
Mar. 15
1820
Augusta
Maryland
MD
4/28
Apr. 28
1788
Annapolis
Louisiana
LA
4/30
Apr. 30
1812
Baton Rouge
Minnesota
MN
5/11
May. 11
1858
St. Paul
South Carolina
SC
5/23
May. 23
1788
Columbia
Rhode Island
RI
5/29
May. 29
1790
Providence
Wisconsin
WI
5/29
May. 29
1848
Madison
Kentucky
KY
6/1
Jun. 1
1792
Frankfort
Tennessee
TN
6/1
Jun. 1
1796
Nashville
Arkansas
AR
6/15
Jun. 15
1836
Little Rock
West Virginia
WV
6/15
Jun. 15
1863
Charleston
New Hampshire
NH
6/21
Jun. 21
1788
Concord
Virginia
VA
6/25
Jun. 25
1788
Richmond
Idaho
ID
7/3
Jul. 3
1890
Boise
Wyoming
WY
7/10
Jul. 10
1890
Cheyenne
New York
NY
7/26
Jul. 26
1788
Albany
Colorado
CO
8/1
Aug. 1
1876
Denver
Missouri
MO
8/10
Aug. 10
1821
Jefferson City
Hawaii
HI
8/21
Aug. 21
1959
Honolulu
California
CA
9/9
Sept. 9
1850
Sacramento
Nevada
NV
10/31
Oct. 31
1864
Carson City
North Dakota
ND
11/2
Nov. 2
1889
Bismarck
South Dakota
SD
11/2
Nov. 2
1889
Pierre
Montana
MT
11/8
Nov. 8
1889
Helena
Washington
WA
11/11
Nov. 11
1889
Olympia
Oklahoma
OK
11/16
Nov. 16
1907
Oklahoma City
North Carolina
NC
11/21
Nov. 21
1789
Raleigh
Illinois
IL
12/3
Dec. 3
1818
Springfield
Delaware
DE
12/7
Dec. 7
1787
Dover
Mississippi
MS
12/10
Dec. 10
1817
Jackson
Indiana
IN
12/11
Dec. 11
1816
Indianapolis
Pennsylvania
PA
12/12
Dec. 12
1787
Harrisburg
Alabama
AL
12/14
Dec. 14
1819
Montgomery
New Jersey
NJ
12/18
Dec. 18
1787
Trenton
Iowa
IA
12/28
Dec. 28
1846
Des Moines
Texas
TX
12/29
Dec. 29
1845
Austin

State Birthdays Grouped Alphabetically Based on State Name 
And, if finding the state you are looking for becomes a challenge in the tables above, find your state's birthday in this chart below, arranged alphabetically by state name. 


State Birthdays Sorted by State Name
State
Abbreviation
Birthdate
Birth Year
Capital City
Alabama
AL
Dec. 14
1819
Montgomery
Alaska
AK
Jan. 3
1959
Juneau
Arizona
AZ
Feb. 14
1912
Phoenix
Arkansas
AR
Jun. 15
1836
Little Rock
California
CA
Sept. 9
1850
Sacramento
Colorado
CO
Aug. 1
1876
Denver
Connecticut
CT
Jan. 9
1788
Hartford
Delaware
DE
Dec. 7
1787
Dover
Florida
FL
Mar. 3
1845
Tallahassee
Georgia
GA
Jan. 2
1788
Atlanta
Hawaii
HI
Aug. 21
1959
Honolulu
Idaho
ID
Jul. 3
1890
Boise
Illinois
IL
Dec. 3
1818
Springfield
Indiana
IN
Dec. 11
1816
Indianapolis
Iowa
IA
Dec. 28
1846
Des Moines
Kansas
KS
Jan. 29
1861
Topeka
Kentucky
KY
Jun. 1
1792
Frankfort
Louisiana
LA
Apr. 30
1812
Baton Rouge
Maine
ME
Mar. 15
1820
Augusta
Maryland
MD
Apr. 28
1788
Annapolis
Massachusetts
MA
Feb. 6
1788
Boston
Michigan
MI
Jan. 26
1837
Lansing
Minnesota
MN
May. 11
1858
St. Paul
Mississippi
MS
Dec. 10
1817
Jackson
Missouri
MO
Aug. 10
1821
Jefferson City
Montana
MT
Nov. 8
1889
Helena
Nebraska
NE
Mar. 1
1867
Lincoln
Nevada
NV
Oct. 31
1864
Carson City
New Hampshire
NH
Jun. 21
1788
Concord
New Jersey
NJ
Dec. 18
1787
Trenton
New Mexico
NM
Jan. 6
1912
Santa Fe
New York
NY
Jul. 26
1788
Albany
North Carolina
NC
Nov. 21
1789
Raleigh
North Dakota
ND
Nov. 2
1889
Bismarck
Ohio
OH
Feb. 19
1803
Columbus
Oklahoma
OK
Nov. 16
1907
Oklahoma City
Oregon
OR
Feb. 14
1859
Salem
Pennsylvania
PA
Dec. 12
1787
Harrisburg
Rhode Island
RI
May. 29
1790
Providence
South Carolina
SC
May. 23
1788
Columbia
South Dakota
SD
Nov. 2
1889
Pierre
Tennessee
TN
Jun. 1
1796
Nashville
Texas
TX
Dec. 29
1845
Austin
Utah
UT
Jan. 4
1896
Salt Lake City
Vermont
VT
Mar. 4
1791
Montpelier
Virginia
VA
Jun. 25
1788
Richmond
Washington
WA
Nov. 11
1889
Olympia
West Virginia
WV
Jun. 15
1863
Charleston
Wisconsin
WI
May. 29
1848
Madison
Wyoming
WY
Jul. 10
1890
Cheyenne

State Birthdays Grouped Based on Time Zone
Typically, the earlier the state birthday, the most likely it is closer to the Eastern Time Zone (east coast). Also, note that several states (marked with *) are repeated. This is because 12 states straddle at least two time zones. 

"Oregon and Idaho are split between the Mountain and Pacific time zones. Nebraska, Kansas, Texas, North and South Dakota are divided between Central and Mountain time zones. Florida, Michigan, Indiana, Kentucky, and Tennessee are split between Eastern and Central time zones."


State Birthdays in Eastern Time Zone

State
Time Zone
Birthdate
Birth Year
Capital City
1
Connecticut
EST
Jan. 9
1788
Hartford
2
Delaware
EST
Dec. 7
1787
Dover
3
Florida*
EST
Mar. 3
1845
Tallahassee
4
Georgia
EST
Jan. 2
1788
Atlanta
5
Indiana*
EST
Dec. 11
1816
Indianapolis
6
Kentucky*
EST
Jun. 1
1792
Frankfort
7
Maine
EST
Mar. 15
1820
Augusta
8
Maryland
EST
Apr. 28
1788
Annapolis
9
Massachusetts
EST
Feb. 6
1788
Boston
10
Michigan*
EST
Jan. 26
1837
Lansing
11
New Hampshire
EST
Jun. 21
1788
Concord
12
New Jersey
EST
Dec. 18
1787
Trenton
13
New York
EST
Jul. 26
1788
Albany
14
North Carolina
EST
Nov. 21
1789
Raleigh
15
Ohio
EST
Feb. 19
1803
Columbus
16
Pennsylvania
EST
Dec. 12
1787
Harrisburg
17
Rhode Island
EST
May. 29
1790
Providence
18
South Carolina
EST
May. 23
1788
Columbia
19
Tennessee*
EST
Jun. 1
1796
Nashville
20
Vermont
EST
Mar. 4
1791
Montpelier
21
Virginia
EST
Jun. 25
1788
Richmond
22
West Virginia
EST
Jun. 15
1863
Charleston

State Birthdays in Central Time Zone 

State
Time Zone
Birthdate
Birth Year
Capital City
1
Connecticut
EST
Jan. 9
1788
Hartford
2
Delaware
EST
Dec. 7
1787
Dover
3
Florida*
EST
Mar. 3
1845
Tallahassee
4
Georgia
EST
Jan. 2
1788
Atlanta
5
Indiana*
EST
Dec. 11
1816
Indianapolis
6
Kentucky*
EST
Jun. 1
1792
Frankfort
7
Maine
EST
Mar. 15
1820
Augusta
8
Maryland
EST
Apr. 28
1788
Annapolis
9
Massachusetts
EST
Feb. 6
1788
Boston
10
Michigan*
EST
Jan. 26
1837
Lansing
11
New Hampshire
EST
Jun. 21
1788
Concord
12
New Jersey
EST
Dec. 18
1787
Trenton
13
New York
EST
Jul. 26
1788
Albany
14
North Carolina
EST
Nov. 21
1789
Raleigh
15
Ohio
EST
Feb. 19
1803
Columbus
16
Pennsylvania
EST
Dec. 12
1787
Harrisburg
17
Rhode Island
EST
May. 29
1790
Providence
18
South Carolina
EST
May. 23
1788
Columbia
19
Tennessee*
EST
Jun. 1
1796
Nashville
20
Vermont
EST
Mar. 4
1791
Montpelier
21
Virginia
EST
Jun. 25
1788
Richmond
22
West Virginia
EST
Jun. 15
1863
Charleston

State Birthdays in Mountain Time Zone 

State
Time Zone
Birthdate
Birth Year
Capital City
1
Arizona
MST
Feb. 14
1912
Phoenix
2
Colorado
MST
Aug. 1
1876
Denver
3
Idaho*
MST
Jul. 3
1890
Boise
4
Kansas*
MST
Jan. 29
1861
Topeka
5
Montana*
MST
Nov. 8
1889
Helena
6
Nebraska*
MST
Mar. 1
1867
Lincoln
7
New Mexico
MST
Jan. 6
1912
Santa Fe
8
North Dakota*
MST
Nov. 2
1889
Bismarck
9
Oregon*
MST
Feb. 14
1859
Salem
10
South Dakota*
MST
Nov. 2
1889
Pierre
11
Texas*
MST
Dec. 29
1845
Austin
12
Utah
MST
Jan. 4
1896
Salt Lake City
13
Wyoming
MST
Jul. 10
1890
Cheyenne

State Birthdays in Pacific Time Zone 

State
Time Zone
Birthdate
Birth Year
Capital City
1
California
PST
Sept. 9
1850
Sacramento
2
Idaho*
PST
Jul. 3
1890
Boise
3
Montana*
PST
Nov. 8
1889
Helena
4
Nevada
PST
Oct. 31
1864
Carson City
5
Oregon*
PST
Feb. 14
1859
Salem
6
Washington
PST
Nov. 11
1889
Olympia

State Birthdays in Alaska Time Zone 

State
Time Zone
Birthdate
Birth Year
Capital City
1
Alaska
Alaska Time
Jan. 3
1959
Juneau

State Birthdays in Hawai'i Time Zone 

State
Time Zone
Birthdate
Birth Year
Capital City
1
Hawaii
Hawai'I Time
Aug. 21
1959
Honolulu

Conclusions 
While the U.S. as a country is going to be 242 years old in 2018, the first state will turn 231 this year, while the youngest continental state will turn 106 and the two non-continental states will turn 62 years old this year. While the US and the states are relatively young in terms of world history, and even the continent's history, there is so much to learn both about the U.S. culture the way it is today and all that came before who have shaped and lived on this land in the past. 

This article will become linked over time with posts from this blog highlighting different states. As I, the blog owner, have been lucky enough to travel by car to 47 of the 48 continental states, I will share both personal experience and facts about the different states. Look out for it! If you have anything you would like to know or facts you would like to add, comment below! 

Author of this post, Jennifer Kumar, provides online face-to-face classes for those working with Americans on virtual, global teams. She also helps to prepare professionals and their families for expat assignments to the U.S. Contact us for more information. 

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Photo credits: Delaware sign, MPD01605, creative commons at flickr. Maryland sign: Krishna Kumar, US time zone map, pinterest