As Hallmark so aptly-and annually-reminds us, this coming Sunday is Father's Day. For many families, there'll be the usual barbecue, perhaps a gift or two, and of course a greeting card. More likely than not, the card will depict a Waspish, American-ideal family gathered around 'dear ole' Dad,' as he relaxes in an almost Archie Bunkeresqe easy chair. Though the smoking pipe and hunting rifle are now gone from today's scene, the general idea has remained consistant.Corny? Sure it is, yet the whole idea of this holiday, and the cultural accoutrements that accompany it, are really pretty damned nice. It is, after all, about love, and the safety and security that a warm, healthy father son/daughter relationship brings to the overall family dynamic. Despite social engineering mantras to the contrary, guess what? Fathers do indeed still count-just ask their children.It's ironic, if you think about it, that not only are we always told at work how we are really one big happy family, but … [Read more...] about The Pros and Cons of a Workplace Mentor
Archives for June 2008
On the first day of my very first job out of college, my new boss offered a piece of advice: “Be careful of making any personal relationships with your co-workers.” She was telling me this for good reason; the program I had joined was a fast-track to management, and she didn’t want me to have to manage my friends once the program had finished. However, the finality of her words stuck through me for that first year at the job, and I slowly evolved into a robot at work. I was functioning at maximum speed, obliging the polite “hellos” and “how was your weekend,” but always keeping my colleagues at arm's length. When promotion time rolled around and I moved up to supervisor, I immediately relaxed. It became easier to befriend some of my fellow supervisors, and I quickly learned the line between boss and friend with my employees. To my surprise, the more engaged and involved I became with my co-workers, the quicker my … [Read more...] about Human vs. Robot: Who Wins the Challenge at Work?
So there we were, gathered around the pool table, frosty beers in hand. It was only the second time in years that we decided to meet like this, outside of the grey hallways of work. It was happy hour. And much to my dismay, it was quite therapeutic to speak freely with minimal risk of getting caught. Many of those HotMonsterBuilder sites like to post regularly on the perils of mixing alcohol and coworkers. While it can easily be a recipe for a cocktail I like to call a 'pink slip,' if you have the discipline to stay in control, you can get a much better bonus then 2-for-1 drinks. Here are some of the benefits of attending a happy hour with your coworkers: *A casual atmosphere lends itself to people loosening up, resulting in the transfer of knowledge. Look past their negative gripes for information that can be useful as you plot your advancement. * You get to associate with people you might normally have the opportunity to talk to. Getting to know people on a personal … [Read more...] about The Career Benefits of Happy Hour
Ah, summer is right around the corner and along with that comes…VACATION! Or does it? We already know that Americans are working more and taking less vacation than they ever have before. While companies are starting to recognize the need for a work-life balance and beginning to offer increased vacation time, many employees are reporting that those same companies have an unwritten rule to not use up all of that vacation time. In fact, many employees feel as though they have to beg for the time off, or worse, hide their vacation like it’s a dirty little secret. Now this has always irked me. As a supervisor at my last job, I earned 2 weeks paid vacation time plus a few flex days per year. If I had a dollar for every time my boss or manager - or even other employees - gave me a hard time about actually using it, I wouldn’t even need to write this blog. The culture of our workplace flat out disgusts me at times. My … [Read more...] about Do You Suffer From Vacation Guilt Syndrome
Summer is a time that we all look forward to, for a variety of reasons. This anticipation starts with childhood, when, after a school year that we never thought would end, we finally got a free pass from the confines of the stuffy classroom. Even if it was only for two months, we felt free."No more school, no more books, no more teacher's dirty looks"We now carry on in our careers, feeling almost confined in our cubes, basking in light at best florescent. Yet, the sheer physicality of summer; its sunshine, warmth and the almost endless possibilities for all sorts of pleasures, never really leaves us. Nor should it. For those of us who pretty much work through most of the summer, there is, I have to admit, a lot of wistful gazing out the window. And a lot of restless energy, while wishing that we were biking, swimming, golfing, playing softball, tennis, golf, or indulging in the not so simple task of trying lazily to do absolutely nothing.If you're stuck at work … [Read more...] about How to 'Summerize' Your Job
As we all know, there are many types people who work around the office. People of different color, race, background, and culture. But no matter how many diverse people you bump into, there always seems to be some constant personality types which are present. To be honest, I will need your help on this article as I am finding it hard to categorize observable traits into personality types. Below are the first four personality types I found scurrying around the work place, and hopefully you can suggest some more. The Spoofer For those of you who are not familiar with Dublin slang, a spoof is a lie, and of course, according to the rules of grammar, a spoofer is a person who spoofs. Not only do these people lie constantly, but anything you can do, they can do better (well, at least according to them). If you are good at football, they are experts. If you are handy in the kitchen, they are culinary wizards. And if you are any way decent in the sack (bed), then they are the … [Read more...] about Know These Typical Office Personalities?
We've probably all felt like this at some time or another... … [Read more...] about Office Rage Caught on Tape