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Showing posts from September, 2015

Psst, Millennials Are Sharing Their Work Passwords

What's your password at work? You might not be willing to share it, but a new survey finds the Millennials are coughing up their workplace passwords here, there and everywhere! Okay, perhaps not everywhere, but one-quarter of employed Millennials are sending their log-in vitals via text, sharing them over work email, including them on unprotected spreadsheets, and writing down their passwords on torn scraps of paper around the office. It's one of the findings from password management firm Dashlane, which surveyed 3,000 employees in the United States, the U.K. and France. Dashlane estimates 60% of employees in the 16-to-34 age range are sharing their passwords at work. Older employees aren't exactly keeping quiet about it, either: 40% of middle-aged employees are willingly sharing their workplace passwords, too. Now in employees' defense, sometimes passwords must be shared for the work to get done these days, especially with everyone's head in the Cloud. There…

Trevor Noah's Debut: Is Gen X Yesterday's News?

Did you watch Trevor Noah's debut as host of The Daily Show last night? I did, and it made me sad. Now don't get me wrong; I think he did a good, solid job in his debut. It was great to see that the show, except for the host, remains true to form. I wish Mr. Noah years of success as host of the show. I'm happy the show is back. Still, I felt wistful as I watched it. I actually -- and I hate to admit this! -- teared up. Over a TV show? How embarrassing! It's not like I know these TV personalities personally. It took me a minute to realize what I was feeling, and then it hit me: I was watching a torch be passed from my generation to the Millennials, and on national television. It was subtly shocking. At the same time, I was laughing -- particularly at the bit about House Speaker John Boehner's as-of-yet-unknown successor, and whether or not he (or she) will "crush it" on the job. It was a veiled, hilarious reference to Mr. Noah stepping into some awf…

Get Away From the Grind On National Coffee Day

Do you know that today is National Coffee Day? Let's wake up and smell the coffee with a new Staples survey that finds 37% of U.S. employees can't even dress themselves for work without having a cup of the stuff first! U.S. employees might yearn to get away from the grind, just not the coffee kind. We love our coffee, and in an increasingly 24/7 work culture we can't work without it. In fact, 44% of the employees Staples surveyed can't have a coherent conversation, or even commute to work, before having a cup of coffee first. Forget about checking email (40%) and eating (38%), too. Nearly half of employees surveyed drink at least three cups of coffee per day, and if U.S. employees had to choose between social media access or coffee consumption, then 75% of them would give up social media for coffee. Hey, we all have to make sacrifices in this economy. Bottom line: talk to the hand, unless there's a hot, steaming mug of coffee in it. From the employer's …

Five Tips For Handling the Indecisive Co-worker

Do you work with someone who can't seem to make a decision -- any decision -- without "checking in" with you first? Let's decide to take a look at this common workplace conundrum! If you work long enough, then you will work alongside the indecisive employee. This co-worker can't seem to make a decision alone, so he or she does the next best thing by turning to you to ask: "What would you do?" But this isn't an awesome Friday night TV show hosted by ABC's John Quinones, this is the real-life workplace. In your workplace, being asked "what do you think?" or "does this sound good?" or "I just wanted to run it by you first" seems to be happening far too often. Why can't this co-worker seem to make a decision alone? Perhaps this work colleague doesn't have much confidence on the job. It's not an unreasonable prospect in a relatively new hire who is still learning the ropes, or even in a seasoned professi…

Is It Workplace Bullying To Unfriend A Co-worker?

Have you ever unfriended a current co-worker on Facebook? Well, a workplace tribunal Down Under has ruled that doing so could be considered a form of workplace bullying! The decision arises from one employee's complaint to Australia's Fair Work Commission that she had been unfriended by a work colleague. According to a story in the Australian Financial Review, the tribunal thought the unfriending revealed a "lack of emotional maturity" and was "indicative of unreasonable behaviour." I've covered the topic from the perspective of the co-worker who has been Facebook dumped by ex-colleagues, but this decision from the summer-impending Southern Hemisphere raises some very 21st-Century workplace social media implications. Namely, is unfriending a current co-worker a form of passive-aggressive workplace bullying? Hmm. I do think there are contexts in which unfriending a co-worker could potentially constitute a form of workplace bullying. For example, whe…

Workplace Trends: The Artificially Intelligent Manager

Think your boss seems robotic? Think again. In Japan, Hitachi is rolling out "artificially intelligent" middle managers -- er, robots -- to do some management while rolling around! That's right, folks. Just when you're starting to feel like you're going through the motions at work, here comes your new manager rolling down the hallway to tell you how to improve your efficiency just a little bit more. Is it Friday yet? We've already discussed the trendy holographic boss, which as far as I can tell is a future trend that has yet to take off. Hey, I never said I have a crystal blogging ball. But this "AI Boss" thing? It might just go places. According to an excellent post on the Institute For Ethics and Emerging Technologies website:According to the Hitachi release, it’s able to provide appropriate work orders "based on an understanding of demand fluctuation and on-site kaizen activity derived from big data accumulated daily in corporate busin…

One In Three Employees Has Had An Office Bully

Have you ever been bullied at work? Unfortunately, too many employees will encounter a workplace bully at some point in their careers, and a new survey from staffing firm OfficeTeam illuminates just how pervasive workplace bullying can be. OfficeTeam asked employees and HR managers for their experiences with workplace bullying, and it turns out more than one in three (35%) employees surveyed has had an office bully. More than one-quarter (27%) of HR managers, meanwhile, said that workplace bullying happens "at least somewhat" often at their company. How do employees deal with it, you ask? Well, 32% of employees surveyed confronted the bully, while another 27% told the boss. Other employees, however, decided not to be so vocal: Another 13% quit their jobs, while 17% did nothing. They simply put it up with it. On a good note, roughly 65% of employees surveyed said they've never been bullied at work. Still, bullying is an incredibly serious workplace issue, and onc…

Employers Want Employees To Work Like Robots

Do you ever feel like you're simply going through the motions at work in a way that resembles a robot on an assembly line? Well, a new study finds that it's not just your imagination! Consulting firm The Energy Project and the Harvard Business Review recently studied a group of 20,000 employees. They concluded that employers are, in fact, trying to make employees work like...machines. More than half of employees in the The Energy Project/HBR study, however, said they increasingly lack outlets for creativity, growth, and even basic thinking, on the job. Nearly 6 in 10 employees (59%) surveyed, meanwhile, said they're distracted, drained and tired because they feel like their employers treat them more like machines than human beings. We do have something in common with robots, however: We both need time to recharge so we can find the energy to keep working! Of course, a robot needs to be plugged in, quite literally, to re-energize itself. We humans, however, are plugge…

Our Co-workers Aren't Buying How "Busy" We Are

We're all so busy, all the time. It's especially true on the job where...a new study finds a good percentage of our work peers no longer believe us when we say we're busy?! Let's get busy looking at this new study!I've blogged about our national tendency to tell everyone how "busy" we are, but now a new study from corporate communications company Havas Worldwide finds 60% of our business colleagues are quietly suspicious whenever we tell them we're "so busy." As in, they don't believe us anymore. Let's go to the imaginary water cooler conversation, shall we?Employee 1: Ugh, I'm so busy today. I can't believe how busy I am!Employee 2 [thinking]: Oh yeah, uh-huh. Sure you are.Employee 1: I mean, it's crazy-busy. I don't know how I'm going to get it all done. I'm that busy.Employee 2 [thinking]: Yeah, "crazy-busy." Right.Employee 1: We'll have to get together soon, when I'm not so busy. What…

European Court Rules Travel Time Counts As Work

Here's a question for you "in the field" types: How much time do you spend commuting between your first and last appointment of the day? If you're based in Europe, then you might like to know that the European Court of Justice has ruled that travel time is work time -- if you're an employee without a "fixed" work location such as a regional office, that is. EU employers who have mobile employees "in the field" during the work day may no longer be able to claim that the work day starts only when employees reach their first scheduled appointment of the day. Likewise, EU employers may no longer be able to say that employees are off the clock as soon as the last appointment of the day ends. One of the goals of the ruling, as reported today by the BBC, is to make sure that employees in the EU don't feel "obliged" to average more than 48 hours on the job per week. Yes, you read that number correctly, U.S. employees. Hey, Rome wasn…

Are Employers Ready To Go Big On Tiny Offices?

How tiny is your work space? If you're like the average U.S. employee, then it's small and getting smaller. So why not move into a Tiny Office already? Over the summer, I caught a few episodes of HGTV's "Tiny House Hunters," which, as the title implies, is about home buyers seeking a square foot-challenged living space as a way to downsize their lives. Now the tiny office could be on the verge of becoming a thing, too. Manufacturers are designing and building tiny offices on wheels that could, quite literally, put the "mobile" in mobile workforce. Here's a tiny, 6' x 10' office from Arkansas tiny house builder Slabtown. All this could be yours for around $2,400. These tiny offices are sleek, modern and may provide a surprising amount of work space, thanks to the creative use of storage. Tiny office builders are also incorporating reusable materials into the build, which could result in a very inviting work space. A few states, such as …