Centerpiece

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Socializing at work is good for you, according to a jillion studies. What’s not so good: getting stuck in a conversation that seems to never end, about a colleague’s trip to the pet groomer or the adorable 10 things the co-worker’s child said yesterday. Avoid these topics:

Employers must balance the desire for a drug-free workplace with employees' privacy rights. So before implementing a drug testing policy, employers must address several issues, such as whether random drug testing is legal and if they can reject an applicant who won't submit to a pre-employment drug test.

Imagine you’ve shown up for three days of leadership training. On the first night, you’ve settled in for a good night’s sleep when someone wakes you and takes you to a nearby bay for a two-mile swim. That’s how former Navy SEAL Rob Roy kicks off his 80-hour leadership course inspired by military combat prep.

Do you know how to win people over by saying the right thing? Find out in this survey crafted by Laurie Puhn, Harvard lawyer, couples mediator and best-selling author, designed to gauge your communication IQ.
Make a fresh start in 2012 by creating a new employee record-keeping system. Whether you’re going to stick with paper files, create computer-based folders or go high-tech and store your records in the cloud, you need to create at least four separate sets of records for each employee:

Have you ever caused a problem for your computer because you simply didn’t know better? “You’d be surprised how many people unknowingly damage their computers,” says Derek Meister, a Best Buy technician. Here are six no-no’s to avoid to keep your computer out of the repair shop:

Leadership guru John Maxwell has put his finger on yet another truth: You should never suppress candor in the interest of caring about your employees. Before having a candid conversation, make sure you can answer yes to these:

Rosalene Glickman, president of the World Academy for Personal Development, often asks her clients if they made a New Year’s resolution and stuck with it. Out of the more than 3,000 people, only 6% said yes. Advice from the experts in making this year’s resolutions stick:
Before you toss that handwritten note into the employee’s file today, stop for a second and read it. Years from now, will you remember what that chicken-scratch meant? Many lawsuits have turned on one or two words scrawled by a manager or HR pro after employee meetings and conversations.

Sacred cows are roaming your hallways. They’re grazing on profits, productivity and patience. To round them up and put them out to pasture, you need to be a constant cow hunter. And you need to get your entire team excited about tumbling those herds.

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