Workplace Coach

Monthly Archives: March 2017

Question: My office mate constantly complains that she’s swamped and has so much work to do she can’t do a good job on any of it. She has, however, time to surf the Internet, text her friends and work on school work so she can “get out of this crap job.” Our supervisor occasionally stops by her desk and when he sees her on her cell asks, “What are you working on.”… Read More

Question:  For the last 15 years, I’ve dedicated myself to working hard to help a small business succeed. I’ve worn many hats, including those of safety cop, accounts payable/receivable bookkeeper, human resources manager and site manager, and in each of those areas functioned at a senior level. Although I’ve pushed myself to the brink of physical and mental exhaustion for this employer, I’ve rarely made enough money to live year round because… Read More

Question: I work for an Alaska Native corporation. My job involves interactions with employees from subsidiary companies. When their employees come to visit, I frequently hug them, and I’ve been called on the HR carpet for this. Since hugging is culturally appropriate, is HR out of line? Answer: Are you sure everyone you hug likes it? If not, and although I occasionally hug clients, I’d hate to defend you in court. Last… Read More

Question: Our deli/cafe is open 12 hours a day — we catch both the “going to work” crowd and the “heading home” customers. We offer a wide variety of coffees, sandwiches, comfort foods and pastries. Four months ago, we began offering take-away “self-catering” foods. If customers give us 72 hours notice, we can provide them everything they need for a casual “made-it-myself” dinner party, at less than the cost of a caterer,… Read More

Rude people. Nasty comments. Uncalled-for-insults. If you treat others well, but occasionally or regularly interact with others who don’t care how they treat you, and you don’t want your feelings to take you under like a rip tide, try these four strategies. Teflon yourself We spray Teflon on pans so cooked food rinses off easily. What can you do to let another’s rude comments – knowing the person cares NOTHING about your… Read More

Question: I’m not a public speaker — and I have two days to become one. Here’s the deal. Someone in our company made the decision that at each quarterly meeting an “average worker” will speak about their job and what they like about our company. I was nominated by someone for this “honor.” When my manager told me, I said I’d rather not, but he said it had already been decided and… Read More

Question: When my company promoted me to supervisor, I was thrilled and determined to be the kind of supervisor I’d always wanted to work under – honest, fair, understanding and inspiring. Here’s what happened instead. Two weeks after I was promoted, our company initiated three new initiatives. I knew the employees wouldn’t like them, I didn’t either. I was told I had to educate my employees concerning each of these initiatives. I… Read More

Question: My former co-worker, “Anne,” is now my boss and I don’t know if I can stay at my company under these conditions. Anne didn’t deserve her promotion. She’s not a leader and doesn’t have as much expertise or work experience as three of us on the team. She got her promotion not because she was the best, but because she fawns on our general manager. I should have seen this coming…. Read More

The new business manager you hired—the one with the terrific resume and reference? It turns out she never worked for the employers named on the resume or knew the supervisors listed as references—despite the glowing recommendations they wrote for her. Instead, she paid for a legitimate-appearing, completely phony resume and references. Fake resumes and references for sale Don’t believe me or think you could spot this fraud? Google “career excuse” or visit… Read More