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Showing posts from July, 2016

10 Signs Your Workplace Is Overly Competitive

How competitive is your workplace? If you feel like you're constantly competing over minor things at work, then it's not just your imagination: The workplace is getting more competitive!

Nearly one-third of 306 managers in a new OfficeTeam report said employees are more competitive with each other than they were ten years ago. Even more, 66% of 355 employees surveyed label their workplace as either "very competitive" or "somewhat competitive." Only 10% said their workplace is "not at all competitive." Those lucky employees don't have to worry about who is wearing the most flair today.

Do we blame increasing employee competition on the app economy, on the Great Recession, or on the Everyone Gets A Trophy generation? There's probably equal blame to go around, but how can you know when your workplace is taking the competition too far? Here are ten signs your workplace is getting overly competitive:

1. There's a chart for everything. And I…

My Hopes For Hillary Clinton's Acceptance Speech

Like everyone else, I'm waiting to hear Hillary Clinton's historic acceptance speech tonight.

Ms. Clinton will have a parade of successful, highly-accomplished women speak on her behalf. At least, that's what I gather from watching the live cable news convention rehearsals happening on stage. It is sure to be a great moment for girl power. I'm excited.

It's amazing to think about how long Hillary Clinton has been a part of our national conversation. Not to sound too cliche, but it seems like only yesterday when she uttered her famous "cookies" comment during the 1992 presidential campaign.

As a young, ambitious woman in 1992, I applauded Ms. Clinton's "cookies" comment. I wasn't going to bake cookies, either! I was going to do Big Things and buy my cookies pre-packaged at the grocery store. I was going to carry a briefcase with my initials on it as I marched up the career ladder in heels to conquer my profession. I even bought a headband…

When A Narcissistic Teammate Rules Your Work Team

The warning signs are all there, and you've worked through the checklist to conclude that one of your teammates is definitely a narcissist. This dude puts the "I" in "team," but everyone on the team loves him.

Every time the narcissistic work peer speaks in a commanding and confident tone, the team leans in to hang on every word. Your teammates seem happy to bask in this co-worker's shadow.

Except for you, that is! You know "the type" all too well, because you've experienced these "tendencies" in a friend, significant other or family member. What an experience it was at the time, too! You're still recovering from it. Yikes.

Bottom line: You were fooled once, and you won't get fooled again. You cannot understand how your co-workers fail to see what is plain as day, right in front of all of you.

If you work long enough, then you will encounter the work environment where you're the only employee who sees right through the …

Forget Take Your Dog to Work Day, Let's Talk About Cats

The British have a new prime minister in Theresa May, who is moving into Larry the Cat's house at No. 10 Downing Street in London.

Yes, you read that correctly, because I'm quite certain that Theresa May is moving in with Larry the Cat instead of the other way around.

One of the happiest news stories so far this year concerns the prime minister's rescue cat Larry who lives at No. 10 Downing Street. Prime ministers may come and go, but Larry stays behind to groom new prime minsters and show them how things are going to work. They are on Larry's turf now.

Cats are like that, aren't they? They tell us how it's going to be. They train us, and they have a fairly low tolerance for our nonsense. Boris Johnson would be wise to stay out of Larry's way.

But back to the topic at hand. It's always Take Your Cat to Work Day at No. 10 Downing Street because Larry has a real job to do! Larry's official job title is "Chief Mouser," and his job is to cont…

Pokemon Goes to Work, Confuses Employees Who Don't Play Pokemon

Are you playing Pokemon Go? I don't want to distract you from walking into another lamp post, but we need to talk about playing Pokemon Go at work.

Pokemon Go is one of the first augmented reality games to really take off as a cultural phenomenon. People are chasing Pokemons everywhere, but what about the Poke Stop that is your office? What about the co-workers who suddenly whip out their phones to spot a Lapras, whatever that is?

By the way, here is the view from your co-worker's smartphone as they stumble back to their work area.

You're not hip to Pokemon, you don't know anything about it (here's the A-to-Z list of characters if you need help), and now your obsessed co-workers can't seem to get enough of it. They're running late to work, arriving five minutes late to meetings, speaking in a language you do not understand and generally making you wonder if they're 8 instead of 38.

Some managers have turned themselves into a viral sensation by trying…

Five tips for hustling past a coworker's side hustle

You have a job, but that's no excuse for not having a side hustle!

What is a "side hustle"? It's the downtime-deflecting, 21st-Century way of saying "a second job" or "side job." It's sort of like how we used to say "free agent nation," but now we say "gig economy." Same thing, only by a different name.

Chances are, a few of your work colleagues have an entrepreneurial side hustle going in today's gig economy. Side hustles go back decades to a time when everyone was doing The Hustle while our mom was at a neighbor's Tupperware party.

Modern side hustles can range the map from selling makeup, jewelry and other product lines (see your Facebook feed for ideas) to running errands to graphic design. A good side hustle can supplement an income while satisfying an entrepreneurial craving.

Instead of debating the profitability (and sketchiness) of some side hustles, however, let's take a closer look at the cracks they…

Memo to Human Resources: Don't Try to Look Cool

Every major employer wants to recruit great interns, and part of the process is making your workplace look like a hip and cool place to work. But what happens when HR tries too hard to look hip and cool? Ugh. Let's talk about Microsoft.

Yes, Microsoft. In an effort to become every intern's BAE** (Before Anything Else) company choice, Microsoft recruiters apparently went online and invited a bunch of young people to...hang and get lit at an upcoming San Francisco intern recruitment event. The message said there will be "hella noms, lots of dranks, the best beats, and...Yammer beer pong tables."

Dranks? That's exactly what we need to hear HR saying, because watching HR people try to look cool is like having our dad come to our middle school dance wearing hammer pants and an over-sized, rhinestone sombrero while working it out to a sick beat on the dance floor. It's the stuff of nightmares. No, Dad. You can drop us off a block from the school's front door, b…