According to a new survey from Milwaukee-based ASQ, formerly known as the American Society for Quality, only 9 percent of respondents said engineers would make the best chief executive officers, behind people from other fields including operations, finance, marketing, academia and sales.
By Cindy Krischer Goodman / The Miami Herald While recently lunching with lawyers, I noticed that some mobile devices were out on the table. It prompted me to raise an etiquette question to the attorneys: Is it bad manners to...
Q: Our business employs people from many different countries. To encourage teamwork and inclusion, company policy states that English should be spoken when people are working together. If everyone in a group speaks a different language, however, they may use their native tongue.
I begin this column with a controversial declaration: I, Rex Huppke, America's most-beloved workplace advice columnist, am unabashedly pro-cookie.
Worried about defamation lawsuits, many companies refuse to allow their managers to discuss the work performance of former employees. Many companies won’t comment at all; others will confirm dates of employment and whether the former employees are eligible for re-hire.
For the ambitious college graduates who flock to Wall Street, working into the wee hours or even pulling all-nighters is an unwritten expectation of the job. Spending both Saturdays and Sundays at the office is the norm.
This isn't just a column. It's a pitch for offices across the country to embrace my big idea: "Workout Wear Friday." The basic premise is that people in fitness gear are more likely to exercise -- or at least to think about it. So let's get everyone in comfortable, moisture-wicking outfits once a week to demonstrate our commitment to physical activity.
In the past few years, treadmill desks have gained traction across Seattle, with the potential to change the office landscape from a row of sedentary workers stuck sitting in chairs into something that can look more like a gym.
Employees don’t always know what is going on in their organizations. Yet communication is critical for all levels of employees. Research shows that engagement goes up when employees feel they have the necessary information to do their jobs, and if they have two-way communication with their managers.
It's the end of the year, and lots of us are feeling a little overwhelmed. Tired, unfocused and ready to take a nice break with our families (or away from our families in some cases). We may be feeling garden-variety stress. Or more ominously, we may be burned out.
By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: During business discussions in our company, I have increasingly heard the F-word being used, even by managers and supervisors. While this doesn’t seem to bother some people, others are noticeably disturbed...
From an individual perspective, understanding these trends will give you an advantage. From an employer perspective, it will help make more informed business decisions. Here are my top 10 that I believe will define 2013 and reshape the way we work in 2014.
Here are 14 fun ideas for work friends, team members and Secret Santas. You don’t have to give at the office -- but it sure makes things merrier if you do.
Some happy hours are moving from the corner pub to the cloud. With companies increasingly working with employees who are spread across states and continents, these have become a way to foster workplace bonding and deepen relationships that might otherwise be all business, all the time.
By Ben Schenkel / Bloomberg News Two years into his new career writing code for phone apps, Leo Landau works for companies as far away as Australia while never leaving his apartment in Eugene, Ore. By year’s end he expects...
CareerCast.com recently analyzed several hundred jobs and rated them by work environment, income, outlook and stress. Using data from sources including the U.S. Census and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, CareerCast came up with a scoring system that narrowed down the "worst" jobs of this year.
Call me a disciple of the digital age, but I no longer have the time or patience for voice mail. It has become an archaic means of delivering workplace messages and should go the way of the pneumatic tube.
We exist in an age of wearable technology and constant connectivity, and gaining time to rest our brains is increasingly difficult. Why not look for ways to carve time out from people's working hours to see what ideas a restful mind might deliver?
Wednesday, Oct. 16, is Boss’s Day. Many bosses probably aren’t even aware of it, while others cringe at obligatory recognition (isn’t every day Boss’s Day?).
Jim Maas has a simple answer for employers who want to contain escalating health-care costs and increase productivity, job satisfaction and creativity: Encourage your workers to get one more hour of sleep each night.
Q: I recently made the mistake of including an inappropriate person on a group email. Someone tattled about this to my boss, who sternly warned me to never do it again. I'm not sure who the tattletale was, but I suspect three people.
By Walter Hamilton / Los Angeles Times Employers have a decidedly negative view of the so-called millennial generation, seeing those in the demographic as having poor work habits and inflated pay demands. That's a finding from a new study examining...
"Performance reviews are next month." Does that phrase fill you with dread? Most employees would put performance review season on a par with a trip to the dentist, and it is the rare manager or business owner who relishes the annual ritual of sitting down with employees and having "the talk."
An employee-funded charity makes money available to workers hit by costly medical or family emergencies. Basically, instead of passing the hat every time a colleague needs support, there is a fund that’s always around.
Q: A longtime employee in our federal government office was "Bob" and now is "Barbara." When it was time for Barbara to start living as a woman, she spent a year using a designated unisex bathroom with only one toilet. After a year, she began using the women's multi-stall bathroom in preparation for her sex-change operation.
For some bosses, the start of the fantasy-football season might bring to mind the famous quote by former Tampa Bay football coach John McKay. When asked after another loss what he thought of his team’s execution, he replied, “I’m in favor of it.”
Jeff Howell spent four years working as a barista and has observed plenty of strange things. “I’ve seen people literally set up a mobile office and park for six hours,” says Howell, now director of operations at Caffe Ladro’s 14 Seattle-area locations. Most of us know not to go that far, but we might still have questions about possible work-at-café faux pas.
Q: I share an office with “Megan,” who always says “bless you” when I sneeze. I think this is a silly habit, so when she sneezes, I say nothing. Recently, Megan scolded me for being rude when I failed to bless one of her sneezes. What’s the best way to handle this?
Q: My company employs a lot of people in contract positions. Sometimes these contractors are allowed to conduct performance appraisals on employees. Does this sound like a good business practice?
Q: I’ve always struggled with my weight, and after losing more than 80 pounds, I still have to watch what I eat. My problem is that every work function my team has revolves around food of some sort -- cakes, cookies, truffles, etc. At least once a week, someone brings baked goods, and there is candy around almost every corner.
A new study has found that an employee's efficiency increases by more than 200 percent when that person is given the option of sitting in a chair made of milk chocolate. The study was conducted by me, on behalf of my new company, ChocoChair Inc. (Our chairs are so good, you'll be sitting on the floor by noon!)
Q: In our department, there are two people who disagree about everything. Their constant arguing makes the rest of us uncomfortable. Our manager is a nice person, but he avoids dealing with conflict. How can we stop these fights?
My question is about the possible formation of a union at my workplace. Our wages are low for the type of work we do, compared with similar local organizations. Many employees are dissatisfied with management’s responses. Some have requested union representation from our parent company, which has a union in place.
The symptoms are universal: There’s a sudden gasp for air and an involuntary utterance of “uh-oh,” followed by an instant surge of heat rushing over the body, increased heart rate, dizziness, nausea and an overwhelming desire to dig a hole, crawl in that hole, put a large rock over the top, maybe decorate with some wallpaper and nice drapes and send out for sushi because you’ll want to stay in that hole a very, very long time.
Q: Whenever my employees have a complaint about a co-worker, they ask me to handle the problem without mentioning their name. If the issue is trivial, I tell them to talk with the other party directly, but sometimes there are policy matters that I need to address.
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Want to network with the CEO of public company or the president of a university? Start running. Adam Goldstein, CEO of Royal Caribbean International, says his running workouts and passion for the sport build rapport with staffers at all levels. "There is no doubt I have running friends in the company who I might otherwise not have formed as strong relationships," he says.
What are employers doing to recruit, retain and reward the indispensable nursing workforce?
By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: What can I do about a co-worker who has decided he doesn’t like me? For the past two years, “Matt” has been disdainful and dismissive whenever I try to talk to...
Imagine the workplace as a forest. We walk through the forest each day surrounded by creatures (co-workers). Some are kind, like squirrels and deer and animated talking bears. Others, like snakes and snarling wolves and buzzing mosquitoes, make the forest miserable.
Q: Our department's physical layout has created a lot of problems. My employees work in a completely open area without cubicles or dividers. There are no enclosed spaces where we can talk privately about confidential matters, such as personal problems or performance issues. The staff frequently complains that it's difficult to concentrate with so many people around.
I've heard from dozens of readers who have gone unemployed for years because of their age. Often, more senior workers are the first to go in layoffs, and it's common to see them miss out on promotions. It breaks my heart. And it also angers me, because there's a law meant to prevent this -- a law that lacks the teeth to be effective.
Seven years ago, we got a new manager who does not like careless errors. I usually do a great job, but sometimes I have a bad day and make mistakes, like adding numbers wrong or forgetting to sign a form. Whenever this happens, my perfectionist boss sends me an email about it.
You've felt their presence at work, even if you never heard them say anything in a public forum. You know they are there, behind the scenes, stirring the pot, getting others to do their dirty work or play their games -- pulling the strings of unsuspecting co-workers.
Margaret Fiester is no shrinking violet, but she says working for her former boss was a nightmare.
The flu season arrived earlier than usual this past fall, and it has been widely reported as one of the worst in a decade.
Our workplaces have grown diverse, but jobs remain far too scarce when it comes to people with autism or other intellectual disabilities. Unemployment rates vary depending on the study but hover around 80 percent, and people with disabilities who do get jobs are routinely paid less than other workers.
Schaun D. Henry was leading an onsite training session on violence prevention in the workplace when a stranger barged into the room, headed straight for him and threatened: "I have a gun."
David Aronchick, a self-described “productivity nerd,” runs Hark.com, a Seattle startup where users can create, share and play their favorite sound clips. Since the business is based on noise, you’d think that headphones at work wouldn’t be an issue. But he’s the type of manager who keeps his ear to the ground when it comes to how best to run an efficient workplace.
In this age of hyper-connectivity, some companies are adopting policies aimed at weaning employees from their electronic devices
Hello! I want you to know that I’m super excited about this week’s column!! It’s about exclamation points!!!!
Q: One of my employees constantly calls at the last minute to say she will be arriving late or not coming in at all. “Ginger” also leaves early on a regular basis, so she seldom works a full eight-hour day.
Is your most important asset about to walk out the door? Studies show that seasoned, trained and productive employees -- your most important assets -- are increasingly feeling trapped and dissatisfied in their jobs. Many are looking for greener pastures.
I am constantly distracted by people chatting near my desk. My cubicle sits next to a hallway, so there is an endless stream of employees passing by all day long. For some reason, this seems to be the place where they always stop to talk.
Because I’m a very important man, I carry very important things, including: a smartphone, an iPad, gum (fresh breath is critical when you’re important), a huge wad of cash that indicates importance, a slingshot (to ward off unimportant people) and a card inscribed with the quote: “Humility is a virtue.”
Things seemed to be going pretty well at work, and then we had a few layoffs. It’s really shaken me up, and I’m trying to settle down again. What do you suggest?
As the country recovers from a recession, our workplaces are moving forward in new ways with new rules. Changes are afoot from how our offices look to who runs them and what equipment will be used. Here are the trends we saw in 2012 and what to expect in 2013.
Erin McHugh had been working as a bookseller during the day and author at night. Her jam-packed work schedule left her little time for volunteering. Feeling unfulfilled, she decided to try an approach she could squeeze into her routine -- one small good deed every day for a year.
During the recession, companies shed millions of jobs as they strove to cut costs and shore up the bottom line. But that work didn’t go away with the elimination of the position; it just got shifted, pushing workers to do more with less, workplace experts say.
The problem with the bags of treats and trays of cookies that appear around the office this time of year is that if you don’t eat them you get sent to prison. At least, that’s what I told myself several years and several thousand Snickers ago.
You spend as much time at the office as you do at home (sometimes more), so don’t forget your work buddies at holiday time. We’ve assembled a list of fun, funny and downright useful go-to gifts for co-workers to thank them for seeing you through another year.
By Liz Reyer / Minneapolis Star Tribune Q: We’ve recently added a new analyst to our staff. She just graduated from college and has some of the right skills, but is somewhat lackadaisical in her approach to her work. What...
In a recent survey, the professional networking site LinkedIn asked more than 8,000 professionals globally for their childhood career aspirations. Top childhood dream jobs for men in the United States: • Professional or Olympic athlete (8.2 percent) • Airplane or...
It’s one of the most disheartening statistics in the job market’s slow recovery. As the nation’s unemployment rate dipped below 8 percent in September, joblessness for post-Sept. 11 veterans was nearly 10 percent.
Smokers beware: Puffing away could reduce chances of landing a job, particularly at a hospital or a health care facility.
By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: Two of my co-workers, “Jake” and “Cheryl,” sit next to each other and spend a lot of time whispering and giggling. They often leave the office together and are sometimes gone...
As we enter the meat of the 2012 presidential campaign and our eyes and ears are bombarded with negativity, many are wondering about political chatter in the workplace and whether it’s ever a good idea.
By Liz Reyer / Minneapolis Star Tribune Q: My boss is addicted to his iPhone. He checks emails during meetings and sneaks glances at it when we have one-on-one meetings. I really feel like he's not paying attention to me...
By Natalie Singer / Special to NWjobs We all know someone guilty of it. Every workplace has one. Some do it well; others seem addicted. And then there are those of us who want to try it but are just...
By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: Many Hispanic people hold management positions in the government agency where I work. These managers often speak Spanish in front of employees who only speak English. This makes us very uncomfortable,...
Lately I’ve been hearing a lot about 20-somethings who are too eager to tell all at work. Whether they are recounting their drunken exploits or their external job searches, their tendency to provide too much information is leaving many managers scratching their heads.
By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: I share an office with a woman who makes all kinds of irritating noises. She is constantly coughing, burping and clearing her throat. I have mentioned this problem in a nice...
The hassle of operating abroad has triggered some companies to move production stateside, a move called “reshoring” by some. Coming home not only bolsters the speed, quality and simplicity of doing business, it’s also more economical than it used to be.
By Karen Burkett / The Miami Herald When Citrix Systems redesigned its Fort Lauderdale, Fla., offices last fall, managers had a mission in mind: Kick-start creativity by getting employees to talk more and sit less. The new layout encourages workers...
Most of us do not work in a lounge chair on a white sand beach. And so we complain about work. But even if we were on that beach, we’d probably still find something to gripe about
I am over six-and-a-half feet tall, yet I have the same size desk chair as my much shorter co-workers. Every day, I have pain in my neck, back and shoulders from slumping.
If Junior can’t get a job, blame Grandpa.
By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: In my previous job, I basically committed career suicide. I gossiped, backstabbed and yelled at important people. I assumed my co-workers were out to get me, even though I had no...
Dianna Hamilton has five children and works as a data analyst for UnitedHealth Group, so she doesn’t have much time to volunteer. Now she doesn't need much.
By Marie G. McIntyre /McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: My manager has an annoying habit of talking nonstop about her family. She goes into great detail about her daughter’s clothes, her son’s sports activities, or her mother’s latest trip. I obviously...
Phones ringing, copiers and printers chugging away, computer keyboards tapping all day, co-workers chatting about, well, anything — it all leads to distracting noise in the office.
By Ann Belser / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Why aren’t there more women at the very top of the corporate ladder? Nationally, just 16.1 percent of the directors of Fortune 500 companies last year were women, according to a study by Catalyst,...
For two years, technology product manager Ned Hayes would rise before the sun at 4 a.m. every Monday to drive to SeaTac airport from his home in Olympia.
A woman in my office wears so much perfume that you can still smell it after she passes by. Unfortunately, her cubicle is next to mine, and the constant odor gives me a headache.
The conventional wisdom for both male and female employees when it comes to shedding tears in front of co-workers in the workplace is: Don't do it.
As a career coach, when I ask individuals who among their peers they do and do not want to work with, they have no trouble giving names and stating their reasons. Their reasons usually come down to two factors -- performance or personality.
Do you feel surrounded by slackers at work? As if you’re doing your job and the jobs of your co-workers? If so, you need to focus on finding the right balance between being and helpful and feeling like a doormat. Here’s how.
Good news for facial-hair enthusiasts earlier this year. After six decades of flagrant beardscrimination, Walt Disney Co. lifted its ban on employee goatees and other face fuzz.
Remember the gym? You first wandered in months ago. Hopeful. Resolved. You made promises. Maybe you’ve broken them now.
By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: I work in a county government agency with a co-worker, "Pam," who is crazy. Pam's mental state is so deteriorated that she has been placed in an empty office where she...
By Anita Bruzzese / Gannett If you think you’ll be recognized at work or garner a promotion just because you work hard, you need to get a clue. While you may believe you’re a diligent worker and deserve to be...
It starts innocently enough. A piece of mail doesn’t get put away; a project is set aside; items you think you might need someday accumulate. Suddenly, your desk has disappeared.
By Melissa Kossler Dutton / The Associated Press No one at the Ohio chapter of The Nature Conservancy enjoys going to meetings more than Annie. Once, she was even disciplined for attending a meeting to which she was not invited....
Let's face it: Backstabbing happens at work all the time. Backstabbers engage in underhanded tactics that make you look bad. Their actions-- such as turning the boss against someone -- can be vindictive, deceitful, sneaky, vengeful, nasty, conniving.
By Natalie Singer / Special to NWjobs They coast down slick streets and withstand gale-force winds with what seems like great ease. If we could see their faces through that spitting barrage of chilly downpour, we’d probably catch them...
A consultant who specializes in resolving workplace conflicts says the No. 1 reason people leave jobs is because of a poor relationship with their immediate supervisor. Another consultant reports that workplace conflicts can consume more than 40 percent of a typical manager’s time.
Every office has a bathroom, every non-robot worker has to use the bathroom, and sharing a bathroom with co-workers seems to be an almost universally unpleasant experience.
Working mothers may be less depressed and healthier than their stay-at-home counterparts, a study finds.
In order to make room for the great new work habits you’re resolving to adopt in 2012, be sure to ring out any bad office practices. And, yes, procrastination is on the list, so reading this now instead of later is a great first step in the right direction.
Whether it’s back-stabbing gossip, whining or bullying, drama in the office saps energy and wastes time.
As a nurse in a Seattle-area hospital, Sacha Davis realizes how precious health can be. Davis is also a working parent of two young children, and as any parent can attest, kids are like pint-size illness incubators.
Whether you’re one of many workers in a row of cubicles or the CEO with the sweet corner digs, your workspace is the place where you are expected to create, inspire, come up with ideas and do your best work.
When making your gift list this holiday season, don’t forget the folks who keep you going from 9 to 5. Put these gift ideas to work for the boss, the assistant and everyone in between.
Energy slumps go hand-in-hand with desk jobs. Here are some simple movement and nutrition steps that can help you stay focused and keep the yawns at bay.
By Laura Laemmle Frongillo Salary.com Cringing through another awkward-moment-filled episode of “The Office,” you might think, “These things could never happen.” Well, according to a recent Salary.com survey of embarrassing moments at work, they do. Out of hundreds of great...
By Michelle ArcherNWjobs Did you know that in Washington, you need a license to be a professional sports announcer? An auctioneer? A camping-resort salesman? Hundreds of jobs are regulated by the state, many of them through the same agency that...
By Andrea Kay / The Associated Press Bob was 50 and miserable, working as a doctor in his own practice but unwilling to call it quits. He just couldn’t get his mother out of his head. “She told me I...
By Joyce M. Rosenberg The Associated Press It’s an uncomfortable summertime moment: A female co-worker shows up for work in the shortest of shorts. Or a male staffer arrives wearing a tank top. Dress-code problems aren’t confined to the summer...
Cindra Wright never expected to like vanpooling. Accustomed to the solitude of her morning drive, she couldn’t imagine making casual conversation with others so early in the day. In fact, the AT&T network operations manager agreed to join a co-worker’s commuter vanpool only because she’d just returned from a trip to New Zealand and was jet-lagged.
By Marty Orgel The Associated Press Evangelist? Guru? Those are so stuck in the dot-com bust. These days, try “chief popsicle” or “public happy-maker.” Job titles can spell success or failure, and the new century is generating a host of...
Remote workers — who may work from home or in another office away from a company’s central site — are growing in number. Gartner Inc., an information-technology research and advisory company, says the number of worldwide remote workers will pass 46 million this year.
In honor of National Nurses Week, several Seattle nurses clear up the five TV myths that drive them most crazy.
Around the time most workers are heading to bed, Patricia Maddox starts her 10:30 p.m.-7 a.m. shift as a registered nurse at Western State Hospital in Tacoma.
In their book “Buy-In: Saving Your Good Idea from Getting Shot Down,” Kotter and co-author Lorne A. Whitehead explain the kinds of attacks that dismantle good ideas -- and how to deal with those issues so that your idea can move forward.
By Becky Yerak The Associated Press Everyone has been there at one time or another: blowing a job interview, flubbing a pitch to a client, flunking a test. During stressful situations, even people who are capable of performing better and...
Jessica Kizorek used to start her day by reading and responding to e-mail until she noticed she wasn’t getting to the priorities on her to-do list. “Half the day had gone by and e-mail had sucked the juice out of me,” she says. Experts say the biggest mistake most workers make is starting the day reading e-mail. Instead, do the important to-dos in the first hour.
Most everyone can say they’ve worked for a bad boss. You know — those supervisors who dictate what you’ll work on and how you’ll do it, and then find fault if it doesn’t turn out the way they wanted it. If you’re stuck with a bad boss, here are some things you can do to survive.
The odds of an etiquette lapse at work pick up in December. Mix work pals, end-of-the-year parties and possibly alcohol, and you may end up with a volatile cocktail of things you wish you hadn’t said or done. But with the right etiquette, holiday parties and work-related meals can be great way to make a good impression and expand your professional network.
The news, delivered by phone, left Sue Bates aghast: She was losing her job of 22 years after testing positive for a legally prescribed drug. Dura Automotive Systems had changed the policy at its plant to test for certain prescription drugs as well as illicit ones. The medication that Bates was taking for back pain -- hydrocodone, a narcotic prescribed by her doctor -- was among many the auto-parts company suddenly had deemed unsafe.
Stunned by pink slips instead of promotions, Gen Y workers — people ages 18-30 — are adopting new workplace attitudes. They still want career development, but they are no longer demanding that it happen quickly.
Mental-health professionals estimate that 9 million adults in the United States have ADHD. Symptoms of ADHD and attention deficit disorder, also known as inattentive ADHD, include difficulty paying attention, easy distraction, trouble finishing paperwork, fidgeting, talking too much and procrastination. All of these issues can cause workers with the disorder a lot of problems at work — and possibly even get them fired.
Conflicts in the workplace are unavoidable. But the number of conflicts is increasing as workers do more with less and stress levels jump. Here are some difficult situations at work and strategies for constructively resolving them.
“E-mail has become the biggest interrupter of the universe,” says Martha Egan, an executive coach from Reading, Pa. She says companies rarely notice the impact of those interruptions because they occur in such small increments. But those increments pile up. When workers stop what they’re doing to check an e-mail that just arrived, it takes four minutes to return their full attention to their work, Egan says. So it takes only 15 e-mails to use up an hour.
Longer hours and fewer benefits are a new reality for many workers affected by the recession. To the rescue: businesses that cater to creating a work/life balance for busy professionals. Here are a few local services that help give you more to time to relax, spend time with family or get even more work done.
The swine flu epidemic had employers desperately trying to keep sick workers at bay, calling into question companies that didn’t. But the economic meltdown has stepped up pressure on worker bees and bosses alike to produce from home rather than heal in bed, says Dave Couper, a career coach and corporate human resources consultant.
For those who thought they could avoid joining the more than 400 million residents of Planet Facebook, abandon all hope. Social networking — complete with Facebook-like status updates, profile pages and networks of social connections — is coming to your office cubicle.
Study followed at 6,014 men and women, tracking their health for an average of 11 years.
Kim Radtke, 43, breastfeeds while composing e-mails at her desk. Radtke, a program manager at the Breastfeeding Coalition of Washington, brings her 4-month-old son, Kerson, to work every Friday and occasionally on Wednesdays. A cream-colored infant chair rests next to her paper-covered desk, while a playmat and a basket of toys settle on the floor.
After one of her two sisters was found to have breast cancer, Pamela Fink rushed to have a genetic test to see whether she had a predisposition for such cancer, and the answer came back yes. Soon her other sister also contracted breast cancer and had chemotherapy and a mastectomy. Alarmed by these developments, Fink, 39, a mother of two who lives in Fairfield, Conn., decided to have a preventive double mastectomy, fearing she also would contract breast cancer and might die from it. When she returned from surgery, she said, her company started giving her fewer responsibilities and then demoted and ultimately fired her.
Workers who have survived layoffs but also gained extra work are likely feeling overworked in the recession. Many fail to confront their boss on this or other issues for fear of losing their jobs. How can employees constructively complain to a higher-up without being shown the door? It’s a fine line to walk, but improving your communication skills can help you navigate this minefield, experts say.
Want a cubicle that reflects your personality? You can go all out like Kelley Moore, author of “Cube Chic: Take Your Office Space From Drab to Fab,” did for the cubicles in her book — green turf, grass skirts, faux fur, bamboo and graffiti — or you can simply bring in items you love from home.
Peter Kazanjy, a little-known San Francisco entrepreneur, has launched a controversial new Web site that overnight has turned him into a very public and not very popular figure. His site, Unvarnished, is like Yelp for people, a "reputation marketplace" where anyone can post anonymous reviews about anyone else.
In less than three decades, technology has transformed the workplace. Computers, BlackBerrys, iPods and cellphones have almost become extensions of us. But what impact have these devices had on the processor and workhorse that’s been around for millennia — the human brain?
The workplace has been turned upside down in the last year because of the recession, and it appears it has even changed our attitudes regarding an often-taboo subject: talking about our salaries.
Seattle resident Bill Bernat has turned job-stress research, his years of workplace angst and his longtime experience as a comedy writer and performer into a monthly show at the JewelBox Theater.
Office romances that lead to nuptials aren’t uncommon. According to CareerBuilder’s 2009 office-romance survey, 31 percent of 8,000 U.S. employees polled had married someone they met at work.
The most irritating or disruptive things about a job may have nothing to do with the work. Sometimes what gets your goat is the annoying habits of a co-worker.
Experts suggest it's best to wait to bring up the topic until it becomes relevant to the discussion. The best thing you can do is to get selected on the merits of your qualifications.
Longer work hours -- not to mention the usual roadblocks to regular exercise -- can make a personal-fitness routine one of the first things sacrificed when life gets too hectic.
By Patricia Montemurri Detroit Free Press DETROIT — Holly Myles begins her workday with a heating pad on her lap, wrapped head-to-toe in a fleece blanket. She wears gloves; she is sure that if she didn't her hand would...
In these times of low profits and high unemployment, what people used to call "burnout" has become for many the new normal.
Be honest, set expectations early on and above all, don't stress when the annual ritual of holiday giving rolls around at the workplace.
The people we see every day on the job often become our closest friends. It's no wonder -- we spend roughly half of our waking hours with them. So what's the secret to balancing work and friendships?
Employees today need to strike the right balance for themselves between being available after hours for their company and having a life -- and they need to communicate those boundaries.
Those who work from home and also have kids must master the learning curve of managing two disparate worlds -- and rolling with the punches.
The fear of losing their job is making some Washington workers take a fresh look at their careers, says a study released in April. About 57 percent of respondents, with an annual income of $40,000 or less, said they would...
By Patricia Kitchen Newsday NEW YORK — With declining home prices, tightening credit and the meltdown of major financial institutions, experts say now may not be the best time to think about leaving your job — even if it's...
By Lily Garcia Special to The Washington Post Q: We have two administrators in our department. Each year, I buy each a holiday gift. I really don't expect anything in return, but they usually go in together on a...
By Daneen Skube / Syndicated Columnist Q: Every year, everyone in my company gets hysterical about finishing everything we didn't do all year long in December — performance reviews, finishing client projects and nailing down new business for 2009....
By Daneen Skube / Syndicated Columnist Q: People are comparing our economic crisis to the Great Depression. I find myself worrying about everything at work. How bad do you think it's going to get in our workplaces? A: As...
By Daneen Skube / Syndicated Columnist Q: I'm in a field where workaholism is normal. I've got young kids, I love my wife, and I don't want to blink and find my life is over. My boss tells me...
By Daneen Skube / Syndicated Columnist Q: Does your advice change if the co-worker bugging you (and other people) is someone you supervise? One of my employees eavesdrops, then comments about it, passes gas (loudly) and has lots of...
By Daneen Skube / Syndicated Columnist Q: My company and job seem to be lurching from one unexpected crisis to the next. Usually I can predict problems and be proactive, but the world seems to be going crazy. How...
By Daneen Skube, syndicated Columnist Q: The national problems in our economy have me freaked out about my job (and the state of the world)! I work in the financial-services industry and feel like I'm on a bus with...
By Daneen Skube, syndicated Columnist Q: I've been reading several spiritual books that advise people to be present or "in the now." I don't know about others, but my "now" sucks. Can you explain how being present when my...
By Daneen Skube, syndicated Columnist Q: One of our co-workers has decided that she will not take on tasks that bore her or that she sees as beneath her. This is creating a rift at work and morale is...
By Daneen Skube, syndicated Columnist Q: I'm wondering if my co-workers are stupid or self-destructive. It's obvious to me that the way they behave will create problems, but they continue to make bad choices. How can they not see...
By Daneen Skube, syndicated Columnist Q: I've been told by co-workers that I need to be more patient. The problem is I'm an impatient, goal-oriented guy. I don't want to change who I am just to get along with...
By Daneen Skube, syndicated Columnist Q: I value maturity in others but often notice I'm the one who's immature in the workplace. I try not to get upset, but sooner or later I get annoyed, offended or nervous, then...
By Daneen Skube, syndicated Columnist Q: I'm a perfectionist. My boss is telling me I need to be willing to make mistakes. Won't making mistakes at work make me look bad and ruin my reputation? A: No, most people...
By Daneen Skube, syndicated Columnist Q: I've got a co-worker who eats health food. She rattles the food around in plastic containers and crunches loudly. How do I ask her to stop doing something so personal? A: The most...
By Daneen Skube, syndicated Columnist The Wall Street Journal--> Q: I have a co-worker who is very immature. He seems stuck in his past, remembering his childhood perfectly but never talking about his wife or kids. He is constantly...
By Daneen Skube, syndicated Columnist The Dallas Morning News--> Q: I've read a lot of self-improvement and spiritual books that talk about how bad it is to be angry or upset. Every day at work I find multiple situations...
More applicants are popping off quick and casual text-message thank-you notes - which can lead to instant rejection.
By Mary Ellen Slayter The Washington Post Work can be stressful. Even happy news, such as a well-deserved promotion, can take a toll if it means long hours while you learn the new job. To stay sane and healthy...
By Daneen Skube, syndicated Columnist Q: I work for a guy who thinks keeping his team terrified is a recommended management practice. In reality, we're all demoralized, jumpy and more concerned about safety than productivity. How do I get...
By Megan K. Scott The Associated Press AP Photo / Stace Maude Smashing someone else's lunch in the refrigerator to make way for your own. Draining the last of the coffee in the pot and not refilling it. Leaving...
Like a lot of employees, Sandra works in a cube farm in which nearby co-workers can pretty much overhear every word she says on the phone. This wouldn't matter so much if those co-workers didn't include one very malicious gossip.
Krista Means opened a children's-clothing boutique because she couldn't find a place to buy a cute baby gift in West Seattle. Carol Schiller started Baby Chaleco because she couldn't find a bib that would keep her baby boy dry. Jackie Friedman Mighdoll created Sponge School because she wanted to expose her infant son to foreign languages. And Kat Stremlau opened Tot Spot Cafe in Woodinville because she had no fun place to take her baby during the winter.
ORLANDO, Fla. – In the early days, the social-networking site Facebook had the feel of an exclusive club. You needed a college e-mail address to join, so for its young users, there wasn't much chance of a parent or boss crashing the party.
Vossler took what she called a significant pay cut for her job as an in-house counsel. But she also had additional day-care expenses for her second child, hoisting the bill from $16,000 to about $30,000 a year.
It takes an impossible amount of effort to create a great team at work: To find the right people, to train them, to inspire them to excel, to keep them from being bored, to overcome difficult circumstances, to bond as a team. Inevitably someone has to move, someone gets a new job, someone else goes on maternity leave or sick leave.
Tapping out an e-mail on your BlackBerry under the conference-room table. Resetting your ringtone to your favorite song. Keeping your Bluetooth in your ear at a business lunch. Think no one noticed those technological faux pas? Wrong – and many find it rude.
Christiaan Johnson-Green didn't rush back to work after his son, Saul, was born six years ago. Instead, he called his Manhattan law firm as soon as his wife went into labor and announced that he was starting his paternity leave, effective immediately.
When Dena Fantle needs to help in her son's classroom, she doesn't have to worry about checking in with her boss or fighting traffic to get to the school. Fantle just leaves. Six years ago, she left the corporate world and started a business as a corporate-project manager and space planner so that she could work around her son's and daughter's class schedules and after-school activities.
Jennifer Winston excused herself and walked out to her car before allowing her tears to flow. She was working in the hotel industry, and a confrontational co-worker had left her upset. "I felt like crying, but I wouldn't do it in front of people," says Winston. "I think in the workplace it shows weakness, and it makes everyone uncomfortable."
Workplace bullies wouldn't exist if organizations didn't reward them. Robert Sutton, a Stanford University management professor and author of "The No Asshole Rule: Building a Civilized Workplace and Surviving One That Isn't," wants employers to know that jerks do their companies more harm than good.
In her nightmares, Jaymie Lennon's former boss calls her an idiot, undermines her confidence, tells other employees that Lennon is "unstable" and "mentally ill," and regularly threatens to fire her. Just, she says, like in real life.
Work is a big part of our lives. Our financial stability, and sometimes even sense of self, depend on it. Unfortunately, the day-to-day tedium of paperwork, deadline stress, and office drama can take its toll on health and happiness. "If you work eight hours a day, that equates to a third of your total life," said Pedram Shojai, a licensed acupuncturist and president of Vitality Health & Wellness.
I have a co-worker who has decided I'm trying to undermine him. He has completely misunderstood several interactions and will only talk to me long enough to accuse me of my latest "sin." I've also discovered he lied to me about several facts. How do I fix this problem?
We love our mobile devices for the services they provide -- e-mail, phone, Internet browsing, text messaging, calendars, camera functions, games. The reassuring glow of keypads and displays signal that we are connected, not alone. That we are needed. But when is it time to disconnect?
It could be a reaction to incompetence, unfairness, work overload. It could be from a thousand daily cuts that bleed your enthusiasm for your job. It could be one major incident -- a layoff, a demotion or someone else's promotion.
Sometimes just the word "communal" is enough to set co-workers on edge. Add "fridge," and they start spewing stories. That time Matt from marketing brought fish and stunk up the breakroom for a month. That lady Sofia, who tosses everyone's leftovers after less than a week. That guy who hogs a whole shelf with his grocery bags. That woman who borrows salad dressing and peanut butter. Whoever is taking bites from sandwiches and swiping Cokes, V8 and Vitamin Water. What is it about the office fridge that tempts its users to behave so badly?
Certainly, clever career gal, you know better than to waltz into the office in a tank top. Unless, of course, you're a yoga instructor. Or a lingerie model. Otherwise, though, you probably put a bit more thought into meshing your wardrobe with your workplace.
Last year Justin Miloro had to wear long sleeves to conceal the Buddha curling around his left forearm and the yellow-orange sun rays on his right. Pants covered the depiction of Earth on one leg and wings on the other. The sun spreading across his back was under wraps. The plugs in his earlobes were obscured by bandages.
Writers and marketers have discovered that if you slap together the words "women" and "work," you've got a pretty good target market. Every day seems to bring a new book. We've pulled together a roundup of some of the latest, addressing women's varied career needs.
Melissa West remembers the tough time she had trying to find a job while her husband served in the Air Force. With degrees in marketing and psychology, she thought finding a job would be easy.
The pros and cons of using e-mail in your professional and personal life. E-mail is now used both formally and informally, with no clear rules – and that can cost you your job.
Dust off your résumé right now. Because after you read this story, you're going to want a new job.
A new study shows a dramatic pay gap emerges between women and men in America the year after they graduate from college and widens over the ensuing decade.
My last day at work coincided with my husband's company party, where two very fit and hip stay-at-home moms talked about their recent marathons.
A bill to give workers up to five weeks of paid family leave — which would be one of the most generous benefits in the nation — was approved on March 5 by the Senate budget committee.
Sit down with your partner and kids to lay out the benefits of a working mom, as well as the need for new responsibilities. Ask kids for input and suggestions. Set boundaries, such as, "I do wash this day. If it's not in the laundry pile, you're on your own."
After eight years as a stay-at-home mom, Catherine Springman jumped back into the paid workforce but not without a lot of planning, help and challenges
Did the inventors of cellphone message alerts and ringtones really anticipate that an entire generation of cubicle workers would be forced to endure shoddy versions of Lynyrd Skynyrd and Ludacris throughout the workday?
A Muslim immigrant working on contract for Microsoft filed a complaint against the company last month, saying he was interrogated about his Muslim-inspired, anti-war Web site, then abruptly fired.
Bus drivers kick, step, clap and shout in unison during a spirited morning aerobics class at Metro Transit's South Base. Downtown paper-shufflers have their meetings walking down the street. Smokers attend classes to quit. Overweight folks sign up to learn about nutrition.
These days, it's rare to find an article on motherhood and work that doesn't pit the stay-at-home mom against the working mom, or claim that one or the other is in better physical shape or a better breast-feeder or deserves a higher salary.
Think you're ready for that big lunch interview? Then go on with your bad self. Just don't stick your knife in the communal mustard jar, slather your bread and then lick both sides of the knife before putting it back in.
David G. Bradley, the owner of the Atlantic Monthly, recently named James Bennet, 39, to be the new editor of the august magazine. Bradley said he chose Bennet because he had "lived life near the headlines" in his job as a reporter, had excelled at long-form narrative and had a "selfless nature."
Many people are at a loss about what to do first when they lose a job. You know you'll need to start looking, but many skip over the thing that can make the process less painful: obtaining unemployment benefits. It helps defeat the desperation that unemployment creates and allows you to maintain a "you-can-do-it" attitude and spirit.
Mary called her friend in tears, crying, "I've lost my job." Tom called home enraged he'd been laid off. Shock. Denial. Anger. Betrayal. Fear. Guilt. Sometimes even relief. These are often the flood of feelings that come with losing your job. It's traumatic.
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