1-Minute Strategies: July ’12

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in Admins,Office Management

• Inject some fitness into your summer by incorporating exercise into your workday. One-third of U.S. workers walk, run or bike to the workplace, according to Adecco. And 57% go for walks on their lunch break. So get moving!

• Offer to be the “fresh eyes” for your boss and to sit in on important project meetings. In his book, Why We Make Mistakes, author Joseph T. Hallinan explains one reason a “newbie” in the room may spot the embarrassing error faster than the senior executives is that, ironically, the experts can assume the mistakes out of the equation.

Fresh eyes often spot errors that management may tend to skim over.

• Compose email using this rule. Executive Assistant Karen De Jager follows the ‘Hey, You, See, So’ rule: HEY! (start off with something that grabs the recipient’s attention), YOU! (a line that shows the recipient it’s for him), SEE? (tell him why it’s good for him), SO… (tell him what you want from him).

“I learned this technique long ago at a workshop for career advancement,” she says. “It helps me keep it short and not waste people’s time. The more work I have, the more I stick with it.”

• Key to getting promoted or getting a raise, says management consultant Steve Tobak on CBS: Do what it takes to get the job done, even if you’re not being paid for it. “First, you put yourself out there, take risks, do the work, and accomplish things. Then, and only then, do you get to put your hand out and say, ‘Give me some.’”

• Build mental power through cross-pollination. That is, add to your knowledge by reading books or attending events that have nothing to do with your field or industry. Who knows? The skills you learn in a beekeeping class can help you in workplace relationships.

• Is your office A/C cranking? Room temperature can directly influence productivity at work, says a study by Cornell Uni­­versity. Raising the temperature from 68 degrees to 77 degrees reduced errors by 44% and increased typing output by 150%. If you have no control over the A/C, try fingerless gloves to keep your hands warm and your fingers free.

• Notice the good. On the eve of his 60th birthday, author and CEO Tony Schwartz reflected on what he’d learned so far that really matters. “Notice the good” was at the top of his list. “We each carry an evolutionary predisposition to dwell on what’s wrong in our lives,” he says. “The antidote is to take time out each day to notice right, and be grateful for what you’ve got. It’s probably a lot.”

— Adapted from “Turning 60: The Twelve Most Important Lessons I’ve Learned So Far,” Tony Schwartz, Harvard Business Review blog.

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