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Showing posts from May, 2015

Uber Plans To Build A See-Through Office Building

Do your open-office environment make you feel like you're always on display? Do you feel constantly distracted by everything happening in your peripheral vision? Well, wait until you see what Uber has planned for its new San Francisco office! Uber, the company that lets people become potentially uninsured taxi drivers to the consternation of real taxi drivers, apparently is no longer content to keep its inside office plan shut off from the outside world. Uber is gearing up to build a 423,000-square-foot, see-through office space! As a San Francisco Business Times article points out: "And for those wondering what workers at Uber (but not the drivers) do all day, you're in luck: the glass structure is designed to give people a glimpse inside." So not only will these Uber employees be distracted by their co-workers, they could also be distracted by various, street-level passerby gawking at them as they listen to a PowerPoint presentation in a second-floor conferenc…

Let's Make Staying On Topic Today's Meeting Topic

Keeping meetings on track is easier said than done, if a new Accountemps survey is any indication. More than one-quarter (27%) of C-level leaders surveyed said that "being distracted" is their number-one irritation during meetings. That's right. The boss was trying to say something important when so-and-so just had to interrupt with an irrelevant question or questionable tangent that is completely off-topic. Before we know it, we're talking about a co-worker's dog instead of spreadsheet details, and everyone will receive another summary email afterward. That is, assuming the boss even has a detailed meeting agenda to begin with, and isn't calling a meeting simply to call a meeting to look busy. This topic is not on today's blogging agenda, however. Ahem. Moving on. So more than one in four managers feel meetings are becoming an exercise in distraction, while employees don't seem to notice. They're too busy interrupting the boss to ask a que…

LOL, Survey Reveals Our Workplace Texting Habits

A new survey reveals how we're using texting on the job, and let's just say that our fingers are flying across tiny keyboards all day long. RingCentral, which provides something called "cloud communication services," recently surveyed more than 500 people regarding their texting habits. Keep in mind that more than half (60%) of survey respondents were in the 25-to-44 age range. What does the survey reveal? First, we're sending and receiving more and more texts on the job. Verging on half (47%) of participants in the RingCentral survey are receiving up to 20 texts a day, while more than one-quarter (21%) are receiving between 21 and 40 texts. Then there are the 10% surveyed who would qualify as "Super Texters." They are receiving more than 60 texts every day. Every. Day. As a workforce, we're also running between multiple apps: More than three-fourths surveyed (78%) are switching between as many as four messaging apps during the work day. Our co…

Study: Small Talk Is A Big Deal In Job Interviews

You're sitting in a job interview trying to make small talk. Blah, blah, blah -- can't we just get to the real interview questions already? What you may not realize is that the interview is already in full swing, and the interviewer may have already decided whether or not to hire you.New research reveals that many interviewers decide within the first few minutes whether or not they want to hire an applicant. It turns out that small talk is, in fact, a very big deal. While you're waiting for a real question, the interviewer could be quietly questioning you. Are you able to engage others in general, light conversation? Do you have a "positive, nice" personality? Can you show interest in people other than yourself? Can you put other people at ease in a stressful situation? Could you speak with our clients without causing a problem? But how can you turn yourself into a skilled small talker of epic proportions, especially if small talk doesn't come naturally …

Our Worst Tweets Will Now Appear In Google Searches

That forehead-smacking tweet you rattled off five years ago without thinking it through first? It might soon appear in everyday Google searches. Yes, it's true. As someone searches for "easy baked bean summer recipe," he or she might also pull up your tweet from 2011 about your explosive gas situation after sampling a co-worker's baked bean recipe at the company summer retreat. We don't even know you, but now we know just a little bit too much about you. Then again, isn't that the whole point of social media? Don't forget the hiring manager who might do a simple Google search while looking at our resume. Will he or she decide to swipe left on our job prospects at the company? #tweegret. Why, oh why, is this happening? Apparently, Twitter and Google, which have had a rocky, on-again/off-again relationship over the years, have been canoodling lately and re-discovering what they have in common while the rest of us continue to embarrass ourselves daily o…

Sorry, A Goldfish's Attention Span Is Longer Than Yours Now

To get directly to the point: Your attention span is only 8 seconds long, thanks to modern technology. #DidYouSaySomething? Microsoft looked into our dwindling attention span situation, and it's not looking good, folks. Microsoft concludes that the average human attention span has taken a nosedive since the year 2000. The average person now has roughly the attention span of a goldfish, give or take on second. That's right. As you try to focus on this blog post as you multi-task and debate what to have for lunch, there's a goldfish swimming in a bowl somewhere thinking random goldfish thoughts, but it's spending one second longer focusing on them than we modern-day, smartphone-mumbling humans! Then again, the average goldfish, as far as we know, isn't responding to texts while reading emails and catching up on the latest Buzzfeed articles, but still. The average human attention span is now less than that of a goldfish. A goldfish! Our fault lies, of course, i…

Sign-up Snit: How To Hit Up Co-workers For Cash At Work

You sense it coming out of the corner of your eye. Oh no, you're about to be asked to put $10 in the pot for another office birthday party! Employees, everywhere, are tired of being asked to donate money. Or are they? If you work in an office, then chances are good you will be asked to pony up some cash in the very near future, especially now that the office birthday party is back after the Great Recession. It's always somebody's birthday, or somebody else is retiring. There are second and third baby showers to celebrate, as well as Girl Scout cookie sign-up sheets being hawked by harried working parents. By the way, do the Girl Scouts do much these days except sell cookies? While our Brownies are finger painting and making another macaroni necklace between cookie sales table appearances, our Cub Scouts are geocaching and learning useful, life-long skills so they can star in a future episode of any Discovery Channel survivalist show. Come on, Girl Scouts. Let's ste…

Feeling Blue? Here's What Your Tie Color Says About You

Hey, guys: What does your tie color say about you? A new British study finds that your tie color is saying something, at least to other men. Let's knot it all wrong into a quick blog post, shall we? Researchers at the University of Durham in England had 50 men and 50 women look at pictures of 20 men wearing blue, gray and red t-shirts. T-shirts? Anyway, the study participants were asked to assess how "aggressive" the shirt wearers (all men) seemed on a scale from one to seven. The study participants were asked also how "dominant" the shirt wearers seemed on a separate, one-to-seven scale. The results revealed that men literally see red whenever they see red on other men. That is, they perceive men wearing red as naturally more aggressive, dominant and angry. A man wearing blue or gray? Eh, not so much. We'll let U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell walk us through the primary tie colors. It's interesting to note that women in the study noted…

Feeling More Productive At Work Lately? Thank Your Genes

Do you tend to feel healthier in the summer months? Well, it's not in your imagination. It's in your genes! To everything there is a season, and this extends to our genetics, apparently. New University of Cambridge research reveals that some of our genes go on sabbatical in the summer, while other genes that slacked off during the winter get back to work! Think of it as a genetic job share program. One of the genes that returns to work in the summer is called ARNTL. It's a gene that suppresses inflammation and battles general infection. That's why someone with rheumatoid arthritis might feel more productive and healthy in the summer, for example. Or our summer cold lasts a mere ten days instead of two knock-down, drag-out months. On the flip side, it might also explain why rheumatoid arthritis symptoms might seem more aggravated in the winter months, and why our winter cold never seems to end until the daffodils bloom. Hey, could we get ARNTL to join the 24/7/365 m…

How To Handle The Co-worker Who Is A Total Slacker

Your co-worker is a total slacker -- until the boss walks by, and then it's a sudden flurry of work activity. Let's look busy trying to figure out how to deal with the "honest-day's pay for an honest-day's work"-shy colleague! We've all worked with this colleague. While you're getting work done, he or she is making personal phone calls, checking Facebook, clipping nails, firming up fun plans for the weekend, eating snacks, chatting up the cute receptionist, responding to a terse Tweet, booking concert tickets, catching up on the news, finding out the final score, downloading music -- and most likely, doing more than one of these things at once.Oh, look who's coming! It's the boss. Quick, look busy! Suddenly, this colleague is switching over to making a sales call, updating a spreadsheet, doing a little mail sorting, firming up not-to-fun plans for the Friday meeting, filing stacks of invoices, chatting up a client, responding to an urgent em…

Millennials Are Employed, and Watching Millennials Get Hired

Are you over 30 and looking for a job? Oh, pardon me. Still looking for a job? Well, a new Gallup report reveals something you might already know: If you were under age 30, then you'd probably be sitting in a status update meeting by now. Last week, Gallup released its Job Creation Index, which measures net hiring activity. Gallup found that U.S. employees in the 18-to-29 demographic "are significantly more likely than older workers to report working for companies that are hiring new people." In other words, they're employed and watching other new people get hired, and how! According to Gallup's numbers, new hiring between January and April 2015 was net +43 among younger workers. This number drops by 13 points (+30) for employees in the 30-to-49 age range. Kind of like aging, it's only downhill from there. New hiring was net +21 among those in the 50-to-64 age range. For anyone over the age of 65, the net hiring average was +14. So our likelihood of s…

You've Got Male: New App Can Measure Mansplaining

You keep getting interrupted in a meeting, and you wish you could track just how often you're being interru--great, now there's an app for that! An emerging app called GenderTimer can track which gender is speaking, and for how long, in a meeting. This way, you can finally say: "By the way, I already know that! See, you are a total mansplainer! Now it's my turn to talk!" How does it work? As Bustle reports:The app is fairly simple to use. You start by labeling the session you want to monitor and recording how many men and women are present. As the conversation proceeds, you tap a "male" symbol or a "female" symbol to record the gender of the person speaking. At the end of the session, the app gives you a simple summation of the gender dynamics of the conversation, telling you what percentage of the group was female and what percentage of the conversation was made up of female voices. So we can see, through the modern miracle of app technolo…

Charmin Survey Plumbs Our Workplace Toilet Plugging Habits

You're in the company restroom when you suddenly feel flushed. Oh, no -- you've clogged the toilet! Again. Well, don't worry, because a new Charmin survey is here to back you up. The Charmin Flushability Survey (no, really!) conducted by Wakefield Research asked 1,000 U.S. adults online about their toilet flushing troubles. And oh wow -- are U.S. workers plugging up the works! Slightly more than 10% of U.S. employees are clogging the toilets at work, according to the survey. Granted, 10% isn't a huge number, but it's enough to make an impact when one in 10 employees are busy creating a "don't go in there!" office restroom situation on a regular basis. Just think about how often the toilet is plugged at work, and it all makes sense. Male employees are two times more likely to clog a toilet at work than their female colleagues, too. Among the other survey findings: * 70% of U.S. adults clog a toilet during the holiday season; * Almost half of a…