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Showing posts from November, 2014

Are your co-workers faking their company potluck baking?

A new survey from social app Skout finds that men and vegetarians are the most likely to pass off store-bought Thanksgiving food items as their very own. Beware, the "homemade" hummus dish at the company potluck might just have an honesty issue!We've all been there, noshing on potluck food in the conference room when a co-worker blurts out with a mouthful of food: "Whof mathe thif?" Yes, who made this? Everyone in the room wants to know, because this comfort food tastes great, it feels very familiar somehow, and it's sure hitting the spot. It's this year's go-to dish, and it's getting snapped up faster than a football in the fourth quarter of the Super Bowl because when it's gone we're left with hamburger tater tot casserole and Cousin Edna's three bean salad. (Sorry, in my experience, the company potluck is a workplace ritual to be endured instead of embraced.) Anyway, everyone is raving about this year's go-to potluck dish when…

Don't Like Your Boss? Then Just Own It Like A Boss

Do you have a good working relationship with your boss, or not? Well, if you're in a bad boss-employee relationship, a new study finds simply owning your bad opinion like a boss could help you do a better job. No more faking it until you make it to quitting time; it's time for a little more transparency in your bad attitude! Researchers at Michigan State University find that managers and employees stuck in poor work relationships can actually gain motivation when both sides know the score. As in, "We don't see eye-to-eye and we both know it, so let's just be accept our sorry state of workplace affairs and move on because we have work to do, and by the way, I'm always right." From the official press release:According to the MSU-led study of 280 employees and their bosses, motivation suffered when an employee believed he or she had a good relationship with the boss but the boss saw it differently. The finding held when the flip side was true and the bo…

Storm Warning! Dealing With Weather One-Upping At Work

If you've been following the news, then you know that Buffalo, New York has received a whopping six feet of snow with three more feet to come. Wow, that's a lot of snow. It got me thinking about the nice people I've met from Buffalo and other snowy, cold parts of the country who always reminded me of their geographic origins whenever we received a dusting of snow on the ground. "Businesses and schools are closed for this?" they would ask in utter disbelief. "This is nothing! When I lived in Maine..." Okay, let's stop right there, because we know what comes next. Generally, a detailed account of Real Snow and how today's sort-of snow that has shut everything down is a mere trifle not to be taken seriously. We obviously lack the perseverance (and the driving skills) to cope with it. Now I truly admire Buffalo residents' fortitude and expertise in dealing with such weather. Coping with that much snow in one fell swoop does take skill and p…

Women Now Equal To Men In Getting Yelled At On the Job

A new report finds that men and women have finally attained equality at work. Well, at least when it comes to verbal abuse. Yay, equality? That's right: When it comes to verbal abuse unleashed at work, women have finally caught up to men! Or have men finally caught up to women? Anyway, gender inequality on the job could be a thing of the past -- at least when it comes to having a supervisor get all up in our grill about missing a deadline or whatever. A researcher at the Institut universitaire de santé mentale de Montréal in Quebec, Canada (whew, I hope I got that right...) conducted the study. Hey, aren't the Canadians known for being very, very nice, though? Let's not muddy matters here, however. Any sense of chivalry seems to have given way to shouting, and we need to figure out what all this gender-neutral screaming means for the workplace. It's been going on since the fourth season of Mad Men. Yes, Peggy. It's your job! That's what the money is for! Now…

Survey Plunges Into the Depths Of Employee Restroom Use

Everyone is talking about Facebook developing a workplace network where employees who don't work at Facebook will be able to chat with colleagues and share documents. Just imagine all the high-level corporate managers who will be storming into the conference room of the future to say: "Hey, guys! I have a great idea! Why don't we start chatting about our proprietary company information over Facebook, because if there's anyone we can trust to protect the privacy of our proprietary company information, it's Facebook! Let's. Do. This!" But I'm the furthest thing from a technology writer, and the closest I'll ever get to storming into a corporate conference room in designer duds is wandering into the kitchen in yoga pants to pour another cup of coffee while I talk to the cat, who never does what I say, anyway. (The "herding cats" mentality? It's true.) What we're not discussing, however, is how our future, proprietary Facebook A…

Employees Want A Holiday Party, Just Not At The Time Chosen

A new OfficeTeam survey finds many employees would like to have a company holiday party, if only the company could pick a time that works better for them. Let's talk about the timing and inconvenience of the company holiday party! The invitation to the company holiday party -- er, email -- arrives in our inbox and...oh, no. The party planning committee couldn't have picked a worse day and time to fit our jam-packed lives! The company's time coordinates simply do not work for our daycare arrangements, our appointment television schedules, our previously-scheduled engagements, and our social media enragements. All those "look at me!" Facebook humblebrags and Twitter hashtags don't write themselves, you know. Or so it seems, according to the new OfficeTeam survey in which more than half (52%) of employees surveyed said they would most like to celebrate the holidays at work with a company party, but more than one-quarter (27%) cite "inconvenient scheduling…

Welcome To the Age Of Getting Fired By Robocall

Robocalls. We've all gotten them, whether they're reminding us of a dental appointment, encouraging us to go to the polls on election day, or pushing us buy some strange product or service we've never heard of and do not want. But now, robocalls can apparently tell us not to bother coming to work anymore! Yes, robocalls can let us know in the most impersonal way humanly possible that. Our. Services. Are. No. Longer..........Required. Thank you. Goodbye. According to a CBS Moneywatch story, Ford Motor dismissed a group of employees by robocall on Halloween. By robocall. On Halloween!!! Really? The Moneywatch story goes on to report there were employees who showed up for work anyway to find their access denied and their services no longer required. It's stories such as these that make me need some super-mellow, mindless, on-hold-with-customer-service music as I shake my head in utter disbelief. So, there we go. Robocalls apparently aren't just for election day a…

Do You Work With Someone Who Has No Sense Of Humor?

A good sense of humor can help us navigate all kinds of workplace situations. But what if our co-worker doesn't seem to have a sense of humor at all? So not funny. This is the co-worker on which our silly, innocuous (read: workplace-friendly) puns, jokes and self-deprecating wit always (always!) fall flat with a giant thud. Instead of a chuckle, we simply get a look, a forehead-wrinkling glance, and occasionally, a comment. Oh, that was supposed to be funny? M'kay. I guess you had to be there. Do you have the invoice from yesterday? Ouch. It's only 10 a.m., too. At this rate, it's going to be a loooong day. As much as we talk about how work styles can be mismatched in the workplace, our individual senses of humor can also be, ahem, "highly misaligned" at work. In fact, our random volleys of wit, sarcasm, pop culture commentary, satire and clever puns can go woefully un-returned as we go about our jobs in today's open office environments. Knock-knock: W…

New Survey Finds Employees Trust Leaders Even Less Now

A new survey finds more than one quarter of employees surveyed trust the boss even less this year than they did last year. Hey, I thought the economy was supposed to be getting better?The 6th annual Building Workplace Trust survey from Interaction Associates, which polled more than 500 office dwellers, tells us that 26% have even less trust in their supervisors in 2014 compared to 2013, while more than half of those surveyed give their company "low marks" for "trust" and "effective leadership." Wow. Of course, if 26% surveyed have even less trust in the boss this year, then 74% must have about the same level of trust as last year. That's good. But let's stick with the 26% who trust the boss even less this year, because that's the far more intriguing blog post. Plus, it's an excuse to listen to old Billy Joel songs circa the Christie Brinkley era. I always liked this one. Anyway, the researchers defined "trust" as "the will…