Managing Managers’ Feelings

Business HandshakeIt’s probably happened to all of us at one time or another, when we have a manager that just doesn’t like us for some reason. Who knows why? You try your best to figure it out with coworkers and friends, and still you get a weird vibe. What’s this all about?

Well, managers are human too and so are personality clashes. That’s a very human trait and sometimes you don’t even know why you clash with someone. But underneath it all, there is a reason and you have to do some brainstorming to get to the bottom of it. But how?

After just writing about a jealous boss, maybe there’s a social case where it’s not jealousy but a genuine personality clash. Personality clashes can be as intricate as personalities themselves. You don’t have to have the same kind of personality to have a clash. You could be two polar opposites whereby you’re not liked for you’re A-type, bombastic personality, while your manager is B-type, quiet and reserved.

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Good Parenting Skills Essential for Employee Engagement

parentingHow do good parenting skills affect employee engagement? What does parenting have to do with their son or daughter being engaged or disengaged at work?

If one is still lucky enough as I am to have their parents around to offer advice once in a while, consider how their influence can affect your work. My parents—my good parents—have always supported my goals in life, especially my talents. They are the wind beneath my wings, so to speak. I have always taken into account their honest feedback, good or bad, at several of the jobs I had in my life. That being said, sometimes when I felt I was not being treated fairly, they gave me open and honest feedback. If I was wrong, as hard as it was to take, I realized they were telling me for my own good in order to grow in the working world. So, there it is; growing up in the working world could use some parenting.

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Let’s Talk about Dag Nammit Swearing at Work

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Dang! I’ll bet if you saw that title, you clicked right on over here to read more!

This is more of a confession than a sermon on swearing at work. Just because I write about things that happen in the work place and what I feel should be done to rectify situations, does not make me sanctimonious. Here’s an area where I should pay closer attention.

One of my fondest memories from the movie, “A Christmas Story,” is when Ralphie swears when trying to help his father fix a flat tire.

Ralphie: Oooh fuuudge!

Ralphie as Adult: [narrating] Only I didn’t say “Fudge.” I said THE word, the big one, the queen-mother of dirty words, the “F-dash-dash-dash” word!

Mr. Parker: [stunned] *What* did you say?

Ralphie: Uh, um…

Mr. Parker: That’s… what I thought you said. Get in the car. Go on!

Ralphie as Adult: [narrating] It was all over – I was dead. What would it be? The guillotine? Hanging? The chair? The rack? The Chinese water torture? Hmmph. Mere child’s play compared to what surely awaited me. Continue Reading →

Acquiring Broad Shoulders to Tough Criticism

TakingCriticismSo, you have a great idea and you draft up the best conceptual design you’ve done in years and really believe you’re on the cutting edge of something so unique that you already can hear the thunder of applause from your supervisors and coworkers.

Instead of the great Wow factor you were expecting, your idea was kicked to the curb like an old dish towel. Now you’re devastated and you could be thinking one of the following:

  1. Dang it. Are these people ignorant or what? Nobody ever likes my ideas. I’m going to quit this job and go where my ideas will be appreciated.
  2. I put so much thought and research into this idea that I never dreamed it would be so easily rejected. What is it they don’t like, or won’t work? It’s too frustrating to work here!
  3. Well, I guess it’s back to the drawing board! First, I want to get more input from my critics as to what exactly they didn’t like about my first idea, and how I can improve so that we’re all happy with the results.

Believe it or not, there are people out there who really feel like #1, above, especially if their ideas have been kicked to the curb once too often. It can be very discouraging and frustrating because they think, “Wow.  Am I still in the game here or what?”

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Here’s to the Clowns at Work

Somebody has to make us laugh!

clownYou know the guy or gal who makes you smile, and laugh out loud. Sometimes just looking at them makes you laugh because you know they could blurt out something funny at any moment. There’s one in every crowd. Remember the kid in grade school who was always in trouble for making funny comments, or funny faces?

I may have written about this incident before, but one of my favorite memories of a class clown was of Scott “Clown” (I can’t recall his last name). He sat a few desks up from us in the back row. We were arranged by height, and I was one of the tallest, so I sat in the back with my smart, handsome classmate, Steve Swatek (His last name I remember.) in the last desk of the next row from me. Then there was Steve Schmidt, another funny kid who sat directly in front of me.

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How Much Notice Should I Give to My Soon-to-Be Ex-Employer?

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The rule is 2 weeks’ notice and that time shouldn’t include your remaining vacation days off. Your employer will need someone trained to take your place. From the time you give notice, an ad goes out immediately for your replacement.  If you are asked to do the training, you will probably need a good week to train the new kid. I’m sure this all depends upon the position at hand. Some positions may not need that much hand-holding, and HR will be training you on the rules of the company and hand you any necessary paperwork to sign.

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Tip 1 – Get to Know Your Employees

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Intro: This blog is written to further elaborate with my own views on the  “8 Tips to Engage Your Employees” booklet written by our experts.

“My supervisor cares about me as a person.” Our research shows that highly engaged employees respond favorably to this survey item by 83%, compared to 4% of the disengaged. I wish there was an item which states, “I can’t wait to get home each day so that I can talk to my loved ones about my work.” If this were an actual survey item, and if it were answered, “Strongly Agree,” then it leads me to think that the person does not confide in others about work or anything else to his or her supervisor. If one were to answer “Disagree,” to that statement, it might be an indication that he or she is satisfied with leaving work at work, and feels free to discuss matters with his or her supervisor without fear of retribution. What kind of a supervisor allows you to feel that way? The answer is one that cares about you as a person. At one time or another, most supervisors were subordinates too, so they should know how the shoe feels on their other foot.

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Controlling Emotions at Work – Easier Said, Than Done

Human Emotions

No matter how high tech the machines we invent are, or ever will be, we are still only human beings. As we know, human beings are complex creatures, not too unlike other animals if it were not for the human brain reigning supreme. What catapulted us to the top of the food chain was our ability to use our brains to invent tools and fire, not to mention having an opposable thumb. That came in handy, too. (Sorry, I couldn’t resist.)

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