Thursday

Are You Giving Your Favorite Employee Too Much Power? Worker Favoritism

You respect his or her advice, enjoy talking with him or her about workplace challenges, and often use the favored employee to assist you with a number of projects.  However, he or she is not a favorite among other leaders or workers and is not experienced enough to do certain things.  Besides, once superiors find out there is evidence of worker favoritism you or someone else just might be out of a job.  

There may have already been some employees who have warned you about favoring this person, but you don’t see what you could be doing that might be creating some tension at the office.  A moment of self-reflection and a few changes could bring your employees’ concerns to a halt.

One.  Have you put the so-called favorite employee in charge of something that he or she is not equipped or experienced enough to handle?

You may have failed to inform others what your plans are in detail.  Therefore, they wonder what might be going on that you would put someone inexperienced in charge.

Two.  Have you ever asked the favored employee to spy, lie, or do other things that caused your least favored team members discomfort?

If so, there just might be a bit of cocky confidence exuding from that favorite employee which is leaving people feeling sore.  Don't be surprised when the people rise up and want to throw your favorite over the boat or out the door.

Three.  Have you found projects for this person to do that has over-step boundaries in other departments?

Making this person feel like he or she is more superior than others was your first mistake and now he or she feels like one is the head of everyone and everything.  In time, the individual will be dictating you too!

Four.  Have you let this person come in late, leave early or take days off whenever he or she wanted?

Well that's just not fair.  No matter the reason, workers are watching and they ain't happy.  What are you going to do about this blatant favoritism?  Many leaders lost great team members over little things like that.  Favoritism creates division if you haven't noticed by now.

Five.  Do you find it difficult to explain your favorable actions toward the worker to other employees?

Business and pleasure just don't mix.  Employees figure out there is more going on than meets the eye why else are you doing so much for a single individual and so little for a group, huh?

The more you give to a person, like a spoiled child, the more they will want.  Are you prepared for the backlash when you no longer favor this worker?  Something to think about.

Tuesday

Crazy-making Co-Worker Driving You Crazy? 6 Tips to Help Get Him, Her Out of Your Hair

When you have a crazy-making co-worker, there are many things you can do rather than just deal with "the issue" on a daily basis.

1)  Confront the co-worker on what is bothering you only after you have reported the issue to human resources or a supervisor or manager who doesn't particularly care for him or her as well.  If you confront prematurely, the co-worker can flip the script and tell someone you are the problem.

2)  Document the times and days the co-worker is saying and doing things that bother you.  Be sure you have this information before you bring up to those who can help alleviate the situation.

3)  Question the co-worker about why he or she does the offensive thing.  Note his or her response.  For instance, if he or she is often tardy and is impacting your work, ask if the individual can start showing up on time.  If there is a reason or many reasons for the chronic tardiness, then note his or her response.  If it continues to happen, you will need to notify management and request that he or she show up to witness the chronic tardiness.

4)  Explain how the offensive behavior is making you feel.  Of course, a nonchalant co-worker is going to continue with the negative behavior, so escalate the matter.  If nothing is addressed, begin looking for other employment.  You might mention to a supervisor or manager, something like, "I no longer feel comfortable coming to work due to the following..." be sure this is in writing.  If you are a good employee, the manager most likely would not want to lose you and will deal with the matter.

5)  If there are witnesses, ask them if they could share what they have observed to management.  They may have already discussed what they don't like to the co-worker and he or she just ignored them too.  Getting others to talk about what they are witnessing/experiencing whether good, bad or otherwise is one way that gets results sooner rather than later.

6) Request to change your work schedule or be removed to another area or department.  If it is feasible and you really like the company, discuss with management about making adjustments to your schedule or work location.  This also puts management on notice that there is something ongoing that is causing the change and it is then that a caring authority figure will question why the sudden change.

Whether a co-worker is annoying with daily story-telling or crazy-making when it comes to not completing tasks, whatever the issue, it is always better to watch, document, confront and share rather than keep everything bottled up inside.  Too often irritating managers, supervisors, and co-workers end up remaining at jobs because no one either bothers to speak up and/or escalate matters; instead victims either find themselves terminated due to the annoying co-worker manipulating the situation against them or quitting a job.

Keep in mind the crazy co-worker may know he or she is the least favorite and will attempt to fault-find, be sure you are performing your job well and you have people around that will support you.

Nicholl McGuire is the blog owner and author of these workplace journals.

Wednesday

Would You Like to Reduce Those Office Hours While Working Part-time from Home?

Take a look at your expenses, do you really need to spend most of your time at a single job that you may not like to obtain all your wealth?  Why not make this year the one that you receive money in additional ways like offering your service(s) independently while you work part-time for "The Man" or "The Woman"?  You can actually pull this off!

1)  Take a look at how much money is being spent or given away each day, week and month on things you, your spouse and children really don't need/like/want or feel at peace about.

2)  Add up the cost of the expenses you must spend each day, week, or month (groceries, rent, utilities, telephone, etc.)  Check to see if competitors are offering those services at better prices.  If you don't want to shop around, there are apps and virtual assistants online that can help with that.  Otherwise, ask a relative to do it for you.

3)  Now find out how much you could potentially make if you were to offer a product or service independently on a part-time basis.

4)  Create a business plan highlighting the key elements that might make your business successful.
Think of where you might obtain customers. List the highs and lows of the business.  Note who you already know who could aid you in your business endeavors.  Spend break and lunch hours in addition to weekend and evenings at least for a few weeks cultivating your plan.

5)  Plan to reduce your hours in about six months or more when the business is showing potential since you had already reduced some expenses.  Notice how much money you have saved and use that to assist with future marketing campaigns.

6)  Create your marketing plan based on the kind of product or service you are offering.  There is no one size fits all in marketing that is how so many people fail at business.  Be sure the plan brings traffic!  You should have business inquiries via email, phone, word of mouth, etc. and those inquiries should turn into sales sooner or later if your business is that good.  If it falls short, revise your plan, but don't give up!

7)  Don't share the details of your plan with skeptical relatives and friends, consult with professionals in your industry.  As long as bills are getting paid, there is no need to involve everyone in the infancy of your business.  Be selective of the company that you keep!

Nicholl McGuire is the owner of this blog and author of What Else Can I Do on the Internet? and other books.  She is also a speaker and part-time virtual assistant.

5 Signs You are Fearful of the Workplace Bully

Some people will never get any further than they are in their positions simply put because they have been deemed a bully whether they know it or not.  You see, workplace bullies are like those school yard bullies in old movies, they feed off of verbally insulting and physically assaulting others.

1.  You avoid this person whenever you can.

Whether it is taking the long walk to the bathroom rather than the short one pass the bully's desk, you worry about this person saying or doing something to you.

2.  Your stomach drops whenever he or she comes around and you nervously attempt to compose yourself.

How many antacids do you take?  It's obvious that you are letting this person negatively impact your health.  Schedule a doctor's appointment and take some personal time off!

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash
3.  You lie to the bully so that he or she isn't angry at you.

Fearful or worried that he or she will punish you in some way, you tell lies and more lies just about every time the bully asks a question or wants you to do something.

4.  You attempt to befriend the bully by sharing information that your co-workers shared with you.

Integrity is a thing of the past for you.  Whatever the bully wants to know to keep you out of trouble, you give it to him or her, if only your co-workers knew, you are the mole!

5.  You do almost anything the bully asks without objection even at the risk of getting fired.

The bully convinces you it is "okay, alright...I'll cover for you."  You know it is unethical, but you don't care just so long as the bully stays off your back, but what might the owner or investors think?

If you have this kind of stress as a result of a bully in the workplace, it's time to talk to someone in Human Resources, an unbiased manager or seek another job.  Bullies aren't worth losing your health or wealth!

Nicholl McGuire is the author of What Else Can I Do on the Internet? and other books.  Get your copy today!  She is also the owner of this blog. 

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