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Showing posts from October, 2017

Five Tips for Pacing Your Breaking News Consumption at Work

Are you getting much done today, or do you feel distracted by breaking news?


It's okay to admit that your eyes are glued to your online news subscriptions today, waiting for the next shoe to drop here in Washington DC. Maybe you're wishing you had gone to law school to be like Jill Wine-Banks, even though law is no longer a growth industry outside of Washington DC. You're loving the smell of indictments in the morning. If only you didn't have to work in between the breaking news alerts, right?

Welcome to the club. We're all busy trying to look busy as we sneak another peek at the news during the boring, early afternoon meeting. Everyone thinks we're looking up documents when we're checking for the red, breaking news banner atop of online edition of The Washington Post.

The red banner is back, something new has happened!

The next few months could be a breathless whirlwind of news cycles that threaten to distract us at every turn during the work day. This mig…

Survey Finds We Admire Our Co-workers Who Come to Work Sick

You might feel guilty for going to work sick as a dog, but a new survey finds many of your co-workers might be quietly purring over your sense of dedication. They sort of admire you for dragging your sneezy, sorry self to work. You've got a fever, and the only prescription is more financials!

The National Sanitation Foundation survey reveals slightly more than one-quarter (26%) of U.S. workers go to work when they don't feel well. They show up to work sick for all the usual reasons. They're afraid to take time off. They need the money. They fear their workload will only get higher and deeper, and they'll never be able to catch up.


But that's not the shocking part. No, I'll let the press release explain:

One of the more surprising results of the survey concerns how employees feel about co-workers coming into work sick. While 98 percent of Americans surveyed acknowledge that they do judge fellow co-workers who come in sick, their feelings aren’t generally negativ…

Dealing With the Co-worker Who Won't Recycle Anything

You're walking past a co-worker's garbage bin to see it stuffed yet again with wadded-up paper, empty soda cans, cardboard wrappers and discarded plastics. So much for that paperless office idea. Let's talk about our co-worker who never, ever recycles anything!


A few of your colleagues seem to have been standing behind the door when recycling bins were handed out, because they never bother to recycle. Like, ever. Maybe you've bitten your tongue for a long time about a colleague's lax attitude toward recycling. Perhaps you've moved more than a few items from the garbage bin to the recycling bin along the way because it bothers you so much.

After recycling this routine a few times, however, you feel compelled to address the topic out loud by uttering some variant of "We have a recycling bin, you know," to which this co-worker responds: "Yeah, I know, I just throw everything in the garbage can."

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I'll admit this is my internal react…

Whaa! When Your Work Team Turns Mean and Childish

Is your work team turning leaner and meaner lately? Okay, scratch the "lean" part. Your work team is just plain mean.

Your once-smiling co-workers no longer say "hi" when you walk into the room. You know it's not you, because they're doing it to each other, too. Eyes are rolling in staff meetings as much as biting commentary rolls off the tongue. Your once-friendly work team now lacks compassion, consideration and patience. They don't have each other's backs as much as they're busy backbiting. Kindness seems so 2015.

When Your Work Team Turns Childish
You're spending valuable mental bandwidth trying to figure out the source of your team's childish attitude problem. It's not layoffs; there haven't been any layoffs in quite awhile, thankfully. It's not a negative new hire; the new staff additions are great people.

It's not the work; everyone's workload is fairly balanced. It's not that your co-workers are trying t…

Fine Lines: The 10 Most Ageist Phrases in the Workplace

You're going about your work day when a younger colleague suddenly utters something that smacks of...ageism. Ugh.

Highlighting a co-worker's age is a wrinkle in workplace time that might just leave a few scars. But how do you know if something you've said is ageist? How can you know if you're insulting an older teammate with a back-handed, age-related insult?


Without further ado, here are the 10 most ageist phrases than need to be Botoxed from the face of the modern workplace:

1. "Let me get somebody else to do it." You're perfectly capable of doing "it," but a younger colleague is insistent than you should let "it" go to somebody who was in grade school when you were in grad school. You insist it's no problem, but "it" is handed off, anyway.

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2. "You're overqualified/why are you working here?" Because you need a job, just like your co-workers do? Plus, you're really good at your job. It isn…

Employees Spend 68 Days a Year Feeling Bored Out of Their Minds

Do you often feel bored at work? A new OfficeTeam survey finds we're bored at work an average of 10.5 hours per week. That's the equivalent of 68 days per year! All together now: zzzzzzzz.

You're not alone if your mind keeps wandering to your weekend plans. Maybe you reflexively keep checking your phone to see if something new is there, only to find that nothing new has transpired since you last checked five minutes ago.


Maybe you're snacking constantly to fill the time, putting a few more steps on your Fitbit to stay entertained, or chatting up the administrative assistant about a favorite band. Because boredom. It's all in a day's work.

A Respite From the Repetitive Workplace
But wait: the modern workplace is supposed to be full of fun, excitement and interesting work! Actually, let's choose an adjective other than "interesting," because my journalism professors back in the day would always cross out the word "interesting" with a big,…

How to Fight the Loneliness Epidemic at Work

Have you heard about the workplace loneliness epidemic? It's the theory that we're all at work alone, together. Now all the alone time on the clock is getting to us!

The more technology brings us together, the more it's pulling us apart. Why talk to each other at work when we can simply text each other?


At the same time, the workplace has become the main social scene (or only social scene) for too many employees. We want to be close friends with our co-workers, only to find it doesn't really work like that in today's competitive work environments. And the work itself isn't filling the void.

Bottom line: loneliness is hurting our overall health.


As the Washington Post's Jenna McGregor writes:

Most people go to work wanting to enjoy their relationships with the people they're working with, wanting to feel like they are contributing to something meaningful in the world. But that is not the experience many people have. Many people feel that the folks th…