Administrative Professional Today

Sure, there’s Evite.com. But have you checked out the competition in online invitations lately?

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You probably know that a diverse group is likely to yield the most creative work. But you may not realize just how diverse a team should be, particularly if it needs to come up with new, innovative ideas. Your team needs diversity in three areas: job function, age and gender.

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If you were ever considering morale boosters, now is the time to act. Here are two easy, affordable ways to build teamwork and morale.

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When you’re ready to put a big idea on the table, you’ll need to be a defender, a supporter and a champion of the idea. Classic example: Spence Silver’s glue that wasn’t so good at sticking. He championed his pet project, and Post-it notes became an office mainstay.

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Your boss is relocating, and he wants you to go with him. Should you relocate? Or find another job? Ask yourself these questions to find an answer:

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Collaboration works, until it starts to resemble groupthink. That’s when healthy dissent evaporates, self-defeating tendencies surge and negative emotions corrode the group’s work. Make sure your team is working more like the Manhattan Project and less like Enron.

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If people asked good, direct questions instead of a vague “What do you think?” we’d never feel overwhelmed by all the queries sitting in our inboxes. Get the fast response you’re looking for by learning to ask a good question, advises Penelope Trunk, author of Brazen Careerist.

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You return from a conference brimming with new knowledge. But when it comes to applying what you’ve learned, you fall flat. Why is it easier to learn new things than to apply them? Anxiety and old habits get in the way, says Dr. Harry Martin. The solution: Put more focus on what happens after training.

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E-mail your job opening to Teens4Hire.org, which reaches about 2 million self-motivated teens across the United States who are looking for work.

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You might prefer a sharp stick in the eye over an afternoon of networking, but in tough times, you can’t afford not to cultivate a robust network. The larger your circle, the better off you’ll be. Here are a few tips from the pros.

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