Tuesday

The Challenges of Working Outside the Home and Having a Family

The tug of war one might have between work and family can be overwhelming at times.  There are the annoying phone calls from relatives while one is at work and the worry that one might not being doing enough for loved ones.  Then there is the job that demands long hours and the problem employees that come with it.  So many issues arise between the two sometimes far too close for a mind to handle.


Sooner or later emotional outbursts show up, impatience, forgetfulness, and a nagging feeling that something is wrong or about to happen begin to take over.  Stress is a known killer and too much of anything isn't good!  If one is too emotionally connected to family, he or she isn't going to do well at work.  If the worker is in love with his or her job more than a partner, then a relationship is bound to fail.


The challenges of working outside the home when trouble is brewing at home have to be managed.  Vacation, personal and sick days are there for good reason, but far too many workers put off these days and use them by the end of the year or don't do anything with them at all.  Meanwhile, major family issues are brewing, but one is too busy with work to care until the challenges started affecting his or her income.


Many workplace issues arise, not because the work atmosphere is so bad, but because employees bring unaddressed toxic topics from home into their work environment.  It isn't always what they say about home life that helps answer some unanswered questions about workplace performance issues, but how they behave with others.  You can get a good idea how someone's home life is by the way they manage people.  If the manager is often impatient, rude, irritable, and tardy, he or she is most likely behaving this way at home too.


A wife might be bitter about unresolved issues with her husband who loves work too much.  A husband may be annoyed about a wife who requests his attention be placed on family once he hits the front door.  But whatever the issues, when the writing is on the wall, as a business owner, leader, manager, supervisor, or employee, read it!  Don't ignore the problems.  Of course, we all have our share, but some workers are experiencing more than we can imagine, so rather than run from the elephant in the room while saying, "It's not any of my business," why not find out what is affecting your business and get down to the bottom of it?


Nicholl McGuire has various journals available online to assist with keeping one's thoughts in order visit Blurb.com.

Friday

10 Signs Your Permanent Job is Temporary

What some will never tell you when they hire you is that one day that permanent job you think you have is really only temporary.  The biggest misconception some employees have when it comes to employment is that they will most likely have their jobs for a long time.  This may have been true for parents and grandparents, but nowadays with many business models changing, sometimes overnight, one can never be too certain.  There are signs to look out for that your position might not be permanent.


1.  You notice the job title and description changed after you were hired. 


It feels like you are playing musical chairs at work, your position changes almost every few months.  You really have no idea what is your primary job anymore.  The leadership has either given you more responsibilities that are expected to be done by a certain date or less.  The tasks are not really what you had in mind. 


2.  Your boss feels threatened by you and will joke, prank, act rude, or do other things to make you feel uncomfortable.


The likelihood that you will be sticking around for a long time is highly unlikely unless you have tough-skin when it comes to a difficult boss.


3.  Your workspace is often shared by others and you find yourself worried about people using or stealing your things.


The stress of your personal space being violated will get to you unless you are able to change the environment that you are in.  If not, little annoyances will grow into larger ones sooner or later and you will think about getting another job.


4.  When you need supplies they are either insufficient, incorrect, broken, ignored, or delayed.


It can make you very angry when you can't get something as simple as a good writing pen or a reimbursement for company related expenses.  Therefore, if leadership is unsupportive in helping you meet your needs, it is inevitable that you will be shooting out resumes elsewhere to ease your troubled mind.


5.  You don't feel like you fit in with the group.


No matter what you do someone or a group of individuals often finds faults with you.  The burden of this kind of negative treatment can be so great that eventually you might find yourself quitting without notice.  Those who are growing weary of you or don't like you might push you out by complaining to the boss.


6.  When there are meetings you often come away from them confused or wondering what is the purpose?


Most workers know meetings that don't solve problems, don't move the company forward, or just tend to be nothing more than a waste can be tiresome.  When there seems to be no answers, leadership and co-workers are unsupportive and nothing is really going on at those meetings, you will start to feel doubtful about your future and whether or not it is even worth sticking it out with the company.


7.  You personally know that you will never get the top spot or corner office.


Whether you are dealing with layers of departments, cliques, policies, stubborn old men and women (who refuse to retire/change/learn something new), or something else, all the jumping through hoops will bring you down.  The office politics will make you want to run for the door.  With no hope to move up, you will want to change your career course.


8.  Employees have been quietly seeking other job opportunities.


When many others feel like you do, this is a definite sign to plan accordingly, save your money, and start looking for another job.  People who don't see the writing in the wall are blindsided and will find themselves unexpectedly laid off, suspended, or worse fired.


9.  You can't trust anyone.


Feeling alone in a large company with no one to talk to about your professional challenges is a good sign that something is brewing.  It is always best to keep your mouth closed and your eyes wide open.  Have you noticed an increase of unfamiliar traffic, people working late, others being laid off or fired, and temporary staff being let go steadily?  Hmm.


10.  The cultural and gender diversity is either non-existent or  the atmosphere is so multi-cultural to the point that there is constant workplace bickering.


Does the company have a history of much turnover?  Chances are it will only be a matter of time that the issues of others might end up on your desk.  Work overload, gossip, tardiness, stealing, surfing the Internet, and any other issue that tends to create a divide between genders and culture will keep one stressed.  Unless the company policies are clearly outlined and enforced, people will do what they want based on what they experienced "back at home, in the neighborhood, where I use to work" etc.  How you deal with these issues will determine whether you will stay with the company or not.


Notice the signs that you see all around you are based mainly on how you respond to them.  Also, keep in mind that leadership is watching too.  So if you should display an attitude that says, "This is too much for me!  I can't stand this job..."  Those who can free you of your burdens will!


Nicholl McGuire 

The Workforce is Changing rapidly - How Will You Manage?



Friday

Forgive the Boss for He Knows Not What He Does

There will be those times when you are left feeling bewildered when it comes to what a boss thinks he needs/wants right now.  Other times you just might feel like your mind is going a mile a minute, because of the downright insane things he is telling or doing to you.  Every worker has a moment in his or her career when the person just doesn't want to go on due to a boss who is having a bad day or many days.  Yet, you know that underneath all the chaos is a man (or woman) who is really a nice and caring person who just wants to do the best at his or her job, so what to do?


Forgive the boss.  Easier said than done.  But what you are doing when you forgive someone is keeping the desire at bay to want to pay him or her back for mistreating you.  A lot of negative energy goes into planning a pay-back plan on someone who has hurt you.  Sometimes the mean-spirited side tends to take over and before long you find yourself easily angered not only at the boss, but just about anyone who comes in contact with you.  So release the need to get even and place that burden on your Creator's shoulders (that is if you have one).  If not, do something positive that will help your well-being.  From a visit to the Human Resources Department to a daily work out, whatever you can do to dispense the ugliness you feel inside in a productive way.


Communicate your concerns with your boss.  Sometimes employees aren't very good at articulating their needs; therefore, their issues with the company fall on deaf ears.  Put workplace problems in writing, schedule a meeting, and express concerns and solutions to your boss.  Avoid the temptation to want to make the meeting an "attack session" where you are venting everything that you hate about the boss and the company.  If you do this, most likely he or she will never let you forget what you have said.  Some bosses know how to drive their workers away or mad because they were offended by them even though they will never breathe a word about the offenses.


If you feel like you can do something better at the company, why not share what you know with your boss and other leaders/workers?  Enlist the help of other employees and bring along a witness or two the next time you have a bright idea.  Document what you know and share copies of your ideas.  Some bosses become overwhelmed with other duties that they fail to keep up with other tasks.


Take a moment to put yourself in your manager's shoes.  If he or she is battling with an illness, a personal issue at home, or dealing with many workplace challenges, most likely these issues and more are affecting his or her personality.  The same may have happened with you in the past or even presently.  So give your boss the benefit of the doubt.  Maybe a thoughtful gift might be just the thing to bring a smile on his or her face at least temporarily.  Your boss will remember that time when you thought of him or her.


If things are becoming too much at the office, to the point that you have dreams of doing something bad to your boss, then by all means consider another job.  Check out online directories who have lists of temporary employment agencies as well as websites with job search resources.  Make the search for a new job a priority!  Sometimes workers must forgive at a distance--better safe than sorry later.


Nicholl McGuire   

Friday

Managers: Planning to Take Day Off or Vacation? What Some Workers Will Do

So you are planning to take a much needed day off or vacation, but you hesitate because you know how some of your workers can be while you are out.  But have you considered other issues that might arise and will you keep everyone busy enough so that they don't take advantage of your being gone?  Consider what might occur leading up to the time you are out, while you are gone and when you return.

Before you go...

1.  Another leader might take the day before off unexpectedly.

It's as if you are being punished for wanting some time for yourself and family, so a fellow leader will leave you holding a pile of work while he or she is out.  You didn't anticipate that you would be bombarded with so many tasks.  Before you make your announcement, be sure that work is caught up and you aren't working over-time prior to your vacation date just in case one of the leaders suddenly slips away at the last minute.

2.  Arrange to have their vacation some time around yours.

Well for some employees they may not have thought about taking any days off until you made your announcement.  Check to be sure that not everyone is going to be out the same day or close together before approaching a boss or if you are the one who approves days off. 

While you are out...

3.  Some employees plan to do nothing.

Everyday is a party for some workers.  They are talking, laughing and having parties while the cat is away.  Meanwhile, the work falls behind while some workers act as if they can't do anything unless the boss is present.  "Sorry, my boss is out...I can't help you with that the manager is on vacation...Can't we wait until my boss comes back?"  Make plans to discipline this sort of behavior before you leave for vacation.  Do employees need to be reminded of policies like dress code, how to handle customer service issues, deadlines, approval protocol, etc.?

4.  Some will snoop around or even steal.

An open office, unlocked drawer, or personal briefcase left in an office will give some workers the idea to "check up" on some things.  Better lock up and take important things with you.  Set an office camera or trap for those you don't trust.

5.  Break the rules.

"Well the handbook says..." you tell them. You know some employees will not play by the book whether in your presence or out of your presence.  Be prepared to enforce the rules before you leave, while you are gone (appoint someone to watch your staff), and upon your return.  Rule-breakers will teach others to break the rules and before long you will have a bitter group awaiting your return demanding change or wanting your job.

When you return...

6.  Come in late, take long lunches, leave early.

Old habits die hard, so if an employee has become accustomed to coming in late, taking a long lunch, and leaving early while you are gone, he or she will do it on and off at least the first week you return.  "No wonder the work wasn't been getting done," you will think.  Enlist the help of someone to watch the time your employees come and go.

7.  Lie about work.

Be prepared for the one who will come up with excuses as to why something is not done from blaming others to covering up mistakes.  People lie when they don't know what to say when questioned about things like: tasks completed, number count, where they were when a package arrived, why a document wasn't turned in, a phone call wasn't returned, etc.

Now that you have seven concerns that just might need to be addressed before you leave, have a great time off!

Nicholl McGuire

Saturday

Can You Trust Your Leadership, Co-workers with a Secret?

When trouble arises in a workplace between leadership and staff or amongst workers, there should be someone you can trust with your thoughts, observations, and other confidential information.  However, far too often loose lips sink ships.  How do you know that a co-worker can and will keep your story secret?  The truth is that you really can't know for sure, this is why you must guard your tongue.

Secrets may not come out tomorrow, next week, or next month, but years from now the word may get out what you really thought of a boss or co-worker long after you left the company.  The chances that you will have an open door back into the establishment after a negative statement has been said is not very good.  There are ways to determine whether someone might value what you say and keep it under his or her hat, at least for a time.  Depending on who you talk to and how you say what you know will keep things hush, hush hopefully until you have no need of that income source.

1.  Notice how the leader or worker interacts with others.  Does this person appear to be all-too-anxious to hear others' news and react to it?  If so, you don't need to share any confidential information with this person unless you are ready to do something about what you know.
2.  Does he or she frequently tell you and other workers everything that is going on in the office without ever giving any personal details or thoughts?  Chances are this person is guarded with his or her information, because they want to receive information from you to take back to someone else.
3.  Are you typically nervous when this person comes around or worry about what he or she might tell others about you?  If so, your gut feeling is giving you a clear indication to watch your mouth.
4.  Do you feel disappointed when little things you say to someone turn into bigger things when the story comes back to you?  If this has happened in the past, it will happen again, so don't share any secrets with a known exaggerator and/or liar.
5.  Do you find yourself worried that you might be the next person on the front page news, because of an office gossip?  If this is a concern of yours, do damage control.  Begin to speak positively about everyone.  Do nice things for leadership and staff.  Offer to help with tasks without someone asking you for your assistance.  Build up your reputation and give no one any excuse to say terrible things about you. 

If an individual causes you unnecessary stress over what he or she might say, or you find yourself worrying about the individual after you have spoken to him or her about an issue, it is safe to say that you must be careful talking to this person.  He or she might be in contact with you hopefully to obtain information from you, use you for his or her personal projects, or for some other reason. 

When speaking to leadership and staff about confidential information, be sure you are not giving any details away that could potentially put your job at risk.  Be vague, but clear.  Watch your facial expressions and mannerisms when speaking.  Avoid joking, smiling, and laughing about serious matters.  Keep personal opinion or assumption out of conversation when there are no facts to back up what you are saying.  Don't divulge information to those who leadership and workers have complained about in the past.  Keep in mind trouble-makers look to find any details to use against those who have reported them.  Lazy or tardy types will not hesitate to find fault with those who do well at work.  Jealous or mentally disturbed workers don't think twice about blurting out sensitive information.  Those who feel threatened by good leaders and workers will find ways to use what they know to get others laid off or terminated.

Consider whether what you are pondering about sharing with others is really worth mentioning and think about what might happen as a result of what you tell your employer or employees in the future.  Take some time to write down your thoughts and read them back, then destroy your notes if you have reached the conclusion you don't want to say anything to anyone about what you know or think you might know. 

Nicholl McGuire

Saturday

How Can You Influence Your Boss and the Leaders Above You in the Company?


5 Signs You Won't Last Long with an Organization/Company

One's attitude will dictate whether he or she will be a success at any organization or company.  If a worker feels hidden animosity toward others, has unchecked resentment or bitter feelings, or overall hates many things about his or her job, it is only a matter of time that the individual will either quit employment or be let go.  Obvious signs a worker will not last a long time with a company include:

1.  The person often talks negatively about the leadership.
2.  (If in management) He or she doesn't listen nor does the individual address staff concerns.
3.  He or she finds his or her self lying or exaggerating about what they do or don't do at work to leadership and staff.
4.  The worker is frequently worried, stressed, or easily aggravated every time someone interrupts his or her work or has to deal with the public.
5.  The person hates his or her commute to work and back home again so much in fact that he or she often leaves early or stays late at work and doesn't like doing that as well.

If most of these signs apply to you, you may want to start looking for new employment.  It is better to start your job search now before you are forced to do it.

Nicholl McGuire also records spiritual audio/video, check out her latest work at YouTube channel: nmenterprise7
 

Wednesday

Hatred for the Job

It steadily rises up in you, the hate.  Each day becomes more and more difficult to come into work.  You despise the drama you might face, the workers and visitors who often complain, and the management who just doesn't understand.  You are often bitter, irritated, and ready to bite someone's head off the minute they say something that bothers you.  Let's be honest, you hate your job!

How many of us have been there and done that?  Why does coming into work have to be such a challenge?  Well, it can be when you simply realize one day, "This isn't what I want."  But what clouds one's mind is the need for money.  People will tolerate much for a good salary and benefits and just might sell their souls for the perks.  But when you don't like your job and the people who work there, hatred is sure to follow.  Is it fair to lash out at others because your employment choice just isn't working out for you?

Although one might know it's time to leave, the challenge is when?  Do you leave when a certain amount of money is saved up?  Do you say goodbye one day without a job lead?  Do you give your two-week notice on a promise of a new job without being 100 percent sure you have it?  The answer is you leave when you are good and ready and not when something happens at work that makes you go. 

Too often employees could have avoided termination had they paid attention to their minds, bodies and spirits before the dismissal.  We all have an innate ability to read a situation and avoid it.  Think of that time when you knew parents or other relatives were having a discussion in the other room about you.  So you listened and confirmed it was true, but did you want to go in?  Most likely not.  When meetings are ongoing about you at the workplace, even though you don't know that they are going on, you have a feeling you are not wanted around much longer.  Chances are someone has picked up on your hatred.

No one wants to be hated--no one!  So if you are the one doing the hating, it isn't a private matter, someone somewhere has noticed a difference in the guy or gal who first walked through the office doors who has now turned into that angry guy or gal.

Why suffer each day trying to find something to like about your job when it is obvious you hate it?  Why bother to vent to others about your job and the management?  Why spend days drinking your job challenges away?  Ddo something about them, before someone else or a group will. 

Remember there is never any good time to leave a job, you just have to do it when you feel you are mentally and physically ready to move on with your life.  If you are a believer, pray and fast about it and enlist other believers to pray with you before you make any decisions.

Nicholl McGuire
 

Unethical Worker Using Flattery to Hide Deception

He tells you, "Good morning..." he is often happy and doesn't appear to have a care in the world.  Yet, you feel something is a bit off about this person.  The friendly smile doesn't really seem what it appears to be.  You watch him for awhile.  A good worker, team player, and gets along well with others, but still something isn't right.

You may have someone like this at your workplace, someone who seems to be the life of the party, so to speak.  But in time you may have learned why he or she is so over-the-top with his or her pleasantries and appears to work harder than most, this worker just might have some dirty company business to hide.

I watched one of the most ignorant, yet one of the brilliant of the bunch use his flattery to distract fellow workers from his deceitful actions.  "Hello...how are you...what's new...I just needed to use this..." while he had a goody bag of company things he had helped himself to.  I was left feeling shocked, angered, and confused.  How could someone so nice, be so dirty?  He had learned from the best--pimps, players and hustlers.  People who spent days lying, stealing, and cheating to earn street credentials and obtain wealth.  The "nice" guy had participated in undercover foolishness for so long at his workplace, while winning the trust from so many, that when he was exposed, some refused to believe the truth about this manipulator.

When the smile wasn't showing, cold eyes revealed a cold heart from the sneaky worker that didn't care much about others or the company's reputation.  He was in business for himself.  When approached about his wrong-doing, the typically cool, calm and collected guy was visibly nervous, talking fast, and willing to make bargains even if they were unethical with management.  He sweet talked his way with select leadership and knew how to sell his skills and those that loved him by name-dropping.  Individuals that mixed business with friendship looked the other way and worked to protect him while others just looked on in disbelief.  Powerful figures didn't want to get their hands dirty when the news reached their ears.  Therefore, they sent a select few to "investigate," "interview" and watch, but the man with the smile had connections higher than they.

Things to think about when dealing with a deceitful worker:

1.  He or she most likely has been getting away with unethical acts for some time.  If this is the case, the worker might be quite comfortable in his or her mischief.  Begin to build a case against this person and make copies of all information you collect.  Chances are that someone, who really likes the person, just might destory evidence.  Note dates, times and offenses.  Set up hidden cameras and other useful things to help when it is time to confront the individual.

2.  Know who his or her favorite people are and start befriending them.  They just might slip up and say some things about the deceitful worker's conduct one day especially if this person has angered him or her.

3.  If you are in leadership, hire someone or get a volunteer (who is not a relative or friend of the deceiver) to report to you about the latest happenings with the unethical worker.

4.  Don't encourage negative behavior by joking with this person, participating in, lying, or covering up his or her deceit.  Avoid the temptation to argue about facts with this person.

5.  Don't share findings with people you know who are friendly with this person.

6.  Don't allow personal feelings toward the deceptive employee get in the way of doing your job.  "It's nothing personal, it's just business." so the old adage goes.

Once deceitful workers are found out yet nothing is done, it is only a matter of time that they will bring themselves and others down with them.

Nicholl McGuire       

Saturday

How to Know an Adult Has Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)

Racing thoughts that affect one's lifestyle, substance abuse and other addicitions, criminal activity and more, these are just some of the things that adults with Adult Attention Deficit Disorder face.  If you or someone you know feel like certain behaviors are affecting your work performance, learn more and seek the assistance you need.

Dr. Edward Hallowell on adult Attention Deficit Disorder

Friday

How to Avoid Worker Favoritism

It comes without notice that warm feeling inside when you see someone familiar.  You enjoy conversations with your worker or co-worker, you love the fact that you have so much in common, but there is just one thing wrong, everyone else in the office knows you like your "favorite" worker too!



Leaders in organizations and companies must conduct themselves professional at all times.  There must not be any inkling that you find someone attractive/sexy/handsome/smarter--far better than the rest--if you hope to build a successful organization. 



Workers pay attention to their surroundings and even if they don't act envious, behave in unprofessional ways, or appear nonchalant about worker favoritism, doesn't mean they are not thinking--wondering what might come of the business or worse one's position.



A leader can avoid misrepresenting one's self as "playing favorites" if he or she keeps in mind the following:



1.  Workers are not and should not be buddies, best of friends etc.  There is a fine line between being friends and having an employee relationship.  What happens when one is hurt over a criticism, chooses to promote someone who isn't a friend, or dismisses a best buddy from a project/office/job etc.?



2.  Limit closed door meetings.  How many times does your office door close when you meet with certain individuals to discuss personal plans/goals/thoughts?  It is safe to assume that you just might have a favorite or two and it is also safe to assume that it is only a matter of time that good times won't last for long inside or outside your office door.



3.  Think before you plan celebratory events.  Will all employees get the same treatment or only those you like or have a personal connection?  For instance, is the favored employee's baby shower more important than everyone else in the department who is having a baby?  If you can't afford it, don't plan it!



4.  Watch how you react to not-so favorite employee issues. Are you ears often open to a certain employee with concerns, but closed when it comes to others?



5.  Doing way more than you should for a few? Are you doing things like: giving favorite workers rides home, buying expensive gifts, allowing them to take days off anytime they want while inconveniencing other staff, ignoring bad habits and mistakes, and doing other things that cause problems with operations and employee relationships?



These thoughts and more are worth considering.  Be sure you are not playing favorites between employees because of the following:  age, familiarity, appearance i.e.) body weight, skin tone, hue of eyes or texture of hair, personal opinion, family ties, fraternal associations, voice accent, his or her personal connections, or others' influence. 



If you must share personal details of your life, meet away from the office.  If you or someone you know has a personal agenda to hire, fire, promote, or demote select individuals, avoid doing things like: share this sort of information with favorites (who might not want to be favorites), lie or cover up the truth about those who you don't like, or rely on others (typically favorites) to do your dirty work.



Nicholl McGuire, author of Know Your Enemy: The Christian's Critic













How to Avoid Worker Favoritism

Sunday

Prideful Leadership Won't Make Employees Do Any Better

Mr. Leader feels the need to remind his people who is in charge, to boast about what he can do for his employees, "If only they would..." He lists his past accomplishments and degrees as if they will help build his credibility with the team.  Mr. Leader dresses well, walks with a strut, talks firmly, and doesn't hide who he favors and who he doesn't.  He dangles the power of his pen like a carrot in front of a rabbit while hoping that his employees will march to the beat of his drum.

The observant ones, those that have been around for a long time--longer than Mr. Leader has held his position, don't budge.  They have seen his type before.  An immature leader with a chip on his shoulder.  He demands respect he has yet to earn.  The veteran employees sit in his meetings and listen most of the time.  They say few words.  Mr. Leader is frustrated with them for he knows that they are wise, but they give up no ideas, no trade secrets, and aren't interested in doing any more than what is asked.

Mr. Leader has failed to win friends.  Secretly, he doesn't like people much, he simply tolerates them.  They have been nothing more than bridges that have helped him accomplish dreams over the years.

If there is any lesson to learn from Mr. Leader's mistakes is his power presence, power status, and power whatever else he uses to make his employees act in the way that he wants, are the very things that will cause his demise sooner or later.  The most powerful individuals are those who look and act like one of the employees while humbly using their power to get things done--power isn't for show.  One should never use a position of power like a weapon, put it away, it isn't the tool you pull out to attack an enemy.  What else do you have in your arsenal?  When the time is right to use power, you will know when Mr. Challenge presents itself.

Mr. Leader and Mr. Challenge rarely get along, because they are both arrogant.  Mr. Challenge likes to question, rock the boat, change things, and make some feel uncomfortable usually for attention sake.  Maybe Mr. Challenge has too much time on his hands or maybe not, but whatever the case, he has watched Mr. Leader exercise his power in offensive ways with other employees.  Mr. Challenge enjoys ruffling his leader's feathers a bit usually in front of others.  He knows how far to go and isn't the least bit concerned about things like: write ups, termination, cut bonuses, etc. because he is well-connected--he knows people that Mr. Leader doesn't know well. 

Mr. Leader might have tried ridding himself of his trouble, but to no avail, the Challenge remains.  When a leader has used his power in ways that others don't agree, it can be difficult to rally up support to do away with those who might need to be fired.  

Dangling one's power will not change things, it won't make employees work better, and it definitely won't make challenges go away, rather prideful individuals will only cause more headaches.  One must do away with pride/ego and focus on the tasks at hand.  When employees know that leadership sincerely cares about them, they can and they will do better.

Nicholl McGuire

   

Monday

Amy Cuddy: Power Poses


Make Temporary Employees and Interns Your Allies

Far too often workers worry about the new temporary or intern taking his or her job, just stop it!  Many temporary workers and interns are just trying out jobs like trying on a new pair of shoes.  You like them initially and they go quite well with your outfit, but once worn for awhile you don't necessarily like them anymore, so until you get another new pair of costly shoes, you just tolerate them.

Temporary employees can be friends not foes when you take the time to get to know them and listen to their personal experiences when it comes to the workplace.  They can tell you things you didn't know about the environment--especially when you are away.  They are great at helping you get things done that you might have been putting off for some time now.  They can offer their expertise in a variety of areas while taking the time to help you get rid of problem employees.

Here are a few tips when working with temporary employees and interns:

1.  Be sure you have a work area that is presentable and comfortable for them before they arrive.

2.  Make certain the phone, computer and any other tools the temp or intern will be using work properly.

3.  Find someone who can take the time to assist them in your absence.

4.  Be respectful and patient with your temporary staff-- you need them even if you think you don't!

5.  Be open to hearing about any issues that might come up without judgment, criticism, blame, or taking offense.

6.  Be truthful in all situations and don't ask or make suggestions that your temporary employee or intern lie, be quiet, ignore, or cover up the truth for you.

Nicholl McGuire is the Author of Know Your Enemy: The Christian's Critic 

Sunday

7 Signs You Have Bad Leadership

From issues with a work schedule to personality clashes, are workplace issues really about the staff or are they directly connected to the leaders that are supposedly there to manage their employees and serve the public?

For far too long leaders in many different organizations have fought, manipulated, lied, and have done other things to push employees out while they sit comfortably in beautiful offices for decades.  No one seems to notice how or why some people remain in positions of authority except for those who are on the outside looking in.  Too often the so-called troubled employee is terminated and no one bothers to listen to what really happened leading up to the fall-out.  Some leaders carefully orchestrate plans to cover up their mistakes on the backs of those who choose not to go along just to get along. 

If you are one for questioning who really is at fault when it comes to a bad system of doing things at the workplace, consider carefully observing the leadership around you who just might be quite good at communicating and dressing well, but bad when it comes to managing quality relationships with others.

7 Signs You Have Bad Leadership

1.  When requests are made to get things done they are often ignored, excuses are made, blame games are played, and you are left feeling like you never want to bring up anything to management again.

2.  Leaders do not bother to show up for work on time and will put off attending pertinent events.

3.  You are given carefully scripted speeches to share with inquisitive staff in an effort to cover up ongoing issues like: "...we are working on that...I know you feel frustrated but...improvements are being made..."  Meanwhile, you know that some changes won't ever be made until certain leaders are gone for good.

4.  Work plans, schedules, meetings, events, and other related things are poorly organized, directions are not clearly given, plans are not followed through, and your leadership tends to make up things as challenges come up.

5.  You often react defensively as if you have to fight for everything you need while wishing for the things you want.

6.  When you see your leadership, your stomach churns, you take deep breaths, and fight hard not to be negative in his or her presence.

7.  Others have shared their complaints with you and all you can say are canned statements like:  "It is what it is...I really wish I could do something but...It's not my business...Well you know how my boss can be...hang in there..."

With so many people losing their jobs through downsizing, lay-offs, and firings, it is understandable why employees will sit back and be quiet about challenges.  However, when you know that there are leaders who are constantly getting away with unprofessional behaviors, acting nonchalantly about issues, and doing other things that are affecting job performance, SPEAK UP!  No matter what superiors caution, threaten, or do behind your back or in front of others, you have a right to take a stand on anything that is causing emotional or physical discomfort for you and your fellow staff. 

Make my God empower you as you stand up for righteousness!

Nicholl McGuire


 

Saturday

Controversial Current Events will Disrupt Workplace Harmony if You Let Them

When it comes to discussing, listening to or spreading information about controversial topics at the workplace, you run the risk of angering management and co-workers.  For some workers, they are insensitive to the news they view at work and feel it appropriate to broadcast their personal views even if they come in the form of a video being played on one's computer.  It is best to keep your news to yourself!

Sometimes workers learn the hard way when approached about the content they are viewing or listening to.  "Could you please turn your radio down or off that news is just not good for business...Maybe it would be best to refrain taling about that topic, because things are starting to get heated around here...We have a job to do."  No matter how polite you say it, a person who could care less about the feelings of others will become defensive.  He or she may not want to talk to you anymore, act rudely or impersonal because of your warning.

An employee who may have had a long discussion about difficult subject matter related to current events with relatives and friends only the night before, might want to come to work without the pressure he or she had experienced at home.  However, Insensitive Nancy, Liberal Lee and Conservative Carl may want to bring up the latest media scandal.  By doing this, all three may end up being a disruption to workflow which may result in future discord between staff members.

Save the drama for mama! Put off discussion about the latest controversial discussions for outside the workplace--that is if you want to keep good relations between team members.

Nicholl McGuire

Favoritism at the Workplace and Office Gossip Will Get You Fired

When you signed a contract with an employer that included a line like, "XYZ Company can terminate this contract at will..." what this meant is that they don't have to give you a reason why they can dismiss you.  So if Jane Doe decides to share some office gossip about this employee and that one to her favorite co-worker and you participate in the discussion, don't wonder why the company has decided to go along with the "at will" dismissal.  Most often the newest person on the team is let go before any other.

Office gossip about a boss, a fellow employee, or even a competitor is just plain bad.  It doesn't uplift the workplace environment, it constantly puts tension in the air, and makes employees unproductive.  Some workers just can't handle harsh criticism, being lied on, disrespected, or whispered about.  The more it is done at the workplace, the more it will fuel the fire between individuals who already have a hard enough time working together.

Bosses, supervisors, and others are guilty of playing favorites.  They tell the favored ones what they like and don't like about certain staff members in the hope that what they say won't get back to the target, but oftentimes it does especially when there is a family connection.  Workers don't think about just how small the world is when they talk about their personal issues and problems they are having with co-workers.  Employees tend to know one another in other departments particularly in industries where workers are encouraged to attend events together, participate in conference calls and classes.

Playing favorites is divisive and when there is a boss who often has lunch with one favored supervisor and not the others, this too can create problems.  Workers wonder why are the two so friendly and what is being said.  Most leaders will not spend much time with any workers during personal time, because they don't want to be accused of playing favorites between staff.

Here are some tips to keep the gossip drama to a minimum:

1.  Avoid the temptation to display who your favorite people are in front of fellow workers especially if you are in leadership, such as:  inviting the same workers to have lunch with you daily; instead of inviting the team or having lunch at the office for everyone to participate.

2.  Keep criticism to yourself unless you plan on doing something about the concerns of staff members.

3.  Be kind to everyone even if you would rather hurt them with your words.

4.  Be quick to apologize if your negative words should reach the ears of someone you dislike and present a plan for making wrongs right.  Apologizing doesn't mean you like the person, but it does make you aware of how what you say has not only hurt the person (put yourself in his or her shoes), but caused issues at the workplace.  A good employee would not want to cause disruption or create further tension for fellow workers.

5.  If things become too upsetting at the workplace because of gossip, favoritism and more, take the time to evaluate whether you still like the workplace and if it is in the best interest of your self and others on whether you should stay.  Dismiss yourself before the boss dismisses you.

Nicholl McGuire, author of Job Journal, My Business Plan and other journals on Blurb.com



 

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Saturday

5 Signs You Have a Foe at The Workplace

You may be so engrossed in your tasks at work that you haven't given any thought that you have an enemy at work.  You may have excused blantant wrongdoing as a mere accident or coincidence.  But a foe knows how to cleverly disguise misdeeds so as to appear as if he or she is "okay" with you when in all actuality this person is jealous.  Some of the things that one who doesn't like his co-worker will do include:

1.  Often looks over your shoulder and makes remarks that sound less like compliments and more like criticisms.

2.  Shares whatever you do, big or small, good or bad, with someone else and includes his or her personal commentary.

3.  Makes a point to inconvenience you when he or she knows that you are doing something else in the hopes that you will fail at getting your job done.

4.  Finds the time to talk to you even when you don't talk much to him or her.

5.  May report to a different boss, but appears very interested in you and what you are doing despite your job having little to do with him or her.

When these things occur, be sure that you note dates and times and what you noticed.  Discuss any problems the person has with you with a witness present.

Nicholl McGuire

Sunday

What You Say at Work Supposedly in Private will Hurt You One Day

Sooner or later an old conversation will show up on the lips of a disgruntled employee.  How many times does one have to be warned that employees aren't friends of anyone--they are workers?  Well, tell that to the people who have numerous BFF (best friends forever) at workplaces. 

It's nice to have friends.  They are there when things go wrong, motivate you to do better, and warn you when you are headed for trouble.  But an angry, unforgiving type of so-called friend, well that person could care less about the friendship when jobs are on the line, when promotions are up for grabs, and when this manipulative person has a liking for a certain boss or supervisor that might be paying a little too much attention to you.

What was told privately comes back to haunt many workers across our land.  Whether what you said was shared in-person, via text or email, any person who has just a little bit of jealousy, insecurity or anxiety about one's position or workplace and considers you a threat will say something.

Words can get one black-balled at work, although unfair, it happens.  Check local labor laws.  Find out what you can about accessing your file to see what others may have said about you.  If what has been mentioned, is happening to you, then do what you must.  If an apology is necessary, make a verbal and written statement to those you have offended.  Find ways to resolve issues.  Maybe you might have to take on an additional project, stay later, or do something else to gain your good reputation back with others.  Seek employment if it gets too hot to stay in the kitchen!

Nicholl McGuire

Thursday

How to Survive a Bad Review


Sometimes when one is being reprimanded for poor job performance, he or she wants to defend his or her actions.  The best thing to do is listen, take notes, and promise that the problem will be solved.
Learn more about surviving a bad review here.

Friday

7 Signs You Know You Have Fallen Out of Love with Your Job

What you use to enjoy about coming to work is disseminating.  You just don't have the passion for your work like you once had even though you may have repeatedly told others, "I love my job."  It happens, sometimes workplace changes aren't always a good thing.  But whatever is going on to make you feel like you just don't love your job much these days, don't take your issues out on loved ones.  So what might be signs there is no love for the job anymore?

1.  You stop taking interest in meetings.  No note-taking, no participation, and you often forget what your responsibilities are.

2.  You frequently show up late, call off, or take long lunches.

3.  You aren't the least bit interested in what your boss tells you about the job like company events, new acquisitions, procedure changes, etc.

4.  You don't bother making small talk with co-workers and avoid asking them questions related to the job.

5.  You are easily irritated with the workers and what they do and say at the job.

6.  Your family often witnesses you in a bad mood after leaving the workplace.  You are complaining about your job more than you ever had these days.

7.  You avoid opportunities to do anything more at the workplace than you already do.

When these signs and others consistently come up, it's time to soul search first.  What happened on the job that caused you to start feeling this way?  Note your findings.  Is there any way to make things right?  List what can be done.  Do you need to meet with someone in leadership?  Mention your observations and share solutions.    Give change some time to take effect.  If you don't like the results of your efforts, start looking for another job.

Nicholl McGuire

Tuesday

Knowing What You Want to Do After Lay-Off

After 30 years of being employed without ever experiencing a lay off, a guy whose name I will call, Fred, would be told one day that his work at XYZ company is complete.  His position will be no more and that he had best start looking for work elsewhere.

It happens, people lose their jobs sometimes with notice, sometimes without.  Once the warning has been received to find a different place of employment, most people hit the ground running.  However, there are those who are so shocked by rejection that they just sit there.  Very little effort is made to seek new employment, start up a business of their own, or help others with their ideas. 

Some, who have been recently laid off, might think they are really putting their best foot forward by checking a few job boards, going on periodic interviews, and attending a networking event "When I feel like it..." but the truth of the matter is, only the strong survive and are successful because they have found something that they truly want to do! 

The individual, who moves at a snail's pace headed toward something he or she doesn't really like, has little regard for other people's time, and doesn't believe that he or she can find something in their field, will miss out!  One's faith must be strong, believing that "I will get to where I want to be..."  All the while this person respects others and geuninely shows interest in helping meet their goals as well as feeling good about his or her role.  He or she must be willing to give up frivolous worldly pleasures to pursue what the Spirit within calls them to do. 

Innately we all know we are destined to do something, but how much time and effort do we put into doing what we know to be right (what might fulfill us mentally, physically and spiritually) as compared to what we logically think we should do or what others tell us we should do?  Most people go with what they think is feasible, easy, and doesn't require much leg work.

Consider your position, what you have been trained to do for months or even decades, is it truly what you like to do or is it just something you do to put money in your pocket?  Any job dismissal is a blessing in disguise.  It causes one to re-evaluate what is his or her true purpose.  You will never know what sincerely makes you happy if you don't make the time to re-discover who you are and what is it that you truly like to do.

Nicholl McGuire

Thursday

Understanding Avoidant Personality Disorder





These are the people who "slip away, they don't like social interaction."  Don't take it personal.  Learn more.

Monday

Seeking Additional Work at Office, Store, Bank etc.? CareerBuilder.com and Monster.com Alternatives

If you can't afford to hire someone to post your resume around the web or you have no money to sign up for a resume distribution service, then your alternative is to go down this list and check out each site and do it yourself.

50StateJobs.com
ActiveHire.com
America's Job Exchange
Americas Job Source
Bakos Group
Best Jobs USA
Beyond.com
CareerBoltz.com
CareerCast.com
CareerCommandPost
Careermag
CareerMatrix
ChiliJobs.com
FindJobz.com
ForHireJobs.com
HireBreed
Hireforjobs
HireNet
HotResumes.com
Indeed
JKLjobs.com
Job Bank USA
Job.com
JobAnimal.com
JobBank.com
JobGuru.com
Jobing.com
JobIsland
JobPostingsOnline
JobSearchSite.com
JobServe.com
JobsExcite
Jobvertise
MegaJobSites.com
NationalJob Bank
Net-Temps
QuintCareers.com
Snagajob
SimplyHired.com
The Talent Bank
UltimateJobs.com
Us.jobs
UsJobNetwork.com
ZillionResumes

Other sites:
AllDiversity.com
DiversityClassifieds
DiversityInc
DiversityJobSite.com
DiversityWorking.com
EmployDiversity
IMDiversity
WorkplaceDiversity
CareerRookie
CollegeJobBank.com
CollegeRecruiter.com

Keep in mind, even though many of these sites have similar formats, not everyone post the same jobs.  You will also want to post a variety of keywords at each site so as to get different results.

Happy job search!

Thursday

How to Create a Unique Workplace Culture (+playlist)



What are your personal core values and how do they compare with your place of employment?  What could you do to make a difference in the workplace culture where you work?  Do people enjoy coming to work on a daily basis or resent it?  You can make a difference wherever you work irregardless of your title.  Seek out the problems, present the solutions and prepare to get your hands dirty!  You might want to create some New Year's Resolutions for the workplace.  If you are unemployed, consider bringing something new to your potential place of employment that will bring more revenue, media exposure, save money, and whatever else your employer hopes to see differently at the workplace this year.

Nicholl McGuire manages this blog as well as others including Apartment Leasing Tips

Wednesday

The Four Most Difficult People You'll Ever Manage


4 Quadrants

1.  Relators - Hate confrontation/conflict.  Relate to people organically. 

2.  Socializers - Make everything fun.  Downside, they sometimes have too much fun and aren't taken seriously.

3.  Thinkers - High thresholds for analytical processing.  They take sometimes too long to make decisions.

4.  Directors - Desire efficiency and productivity from team.  Sometimes they get these things through a lack of effort and respect toward team. 

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