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Workplace Communication

In an era of Casual Fridays and work-from-home colleagues, how can you maintain effective office communication in a changing business climate?

We’ll steer you through changes in business etiquette, and help you successfully navigate through the new realities of workplace conflict and office politics.

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What don’t managers want from em­­ployees? Check out this list of flaws that describe unsuccessful em­­ployees, according to their bosses. The list was compiled by John Feather­­stone, author of Start Hiring Winners:
Practice. That’s the best way to get comfortable with speaking in front of others. Although the idea of pub­­lic speaking may sound ter­­ri­­fy­­ing, your confidence will get a major boost from stepping out of your comfort zone and into the spot­­light.
Being powerful doesn’t mean you’re brazen, pushy or trying to control anyone or anything. It simply means you stop focusing on how little power you have in a situation, and instead tap into your talent and determination to influence others to create better outcomes. Start using your skills to make your office or home better for everyone.

Pete Sampras realized early in his tennis career that his opponent wasn’t beating him. Sampras was beating himself. It wasn’t just that he’d played badly, Sampras says now. “I also played without heart, which is a greater sin.” Later in his career, Sampras saw reality with rare objectivity. He lists five truisms as mostly fair and all realistic, starting with "You're only as good as your last win..."

Instead of worrying about what di­­rec­­tion your life will take in one year or five years, keep your focus on three things—today. Ask yourself:

A growing body of research confirms what you may have suspected: Looks matter, especially when it comes to making a first impression on others. Surprisingly, though, it’s also the way people draw conclusions about our ability to do a job.

Grandmas are known for their nuggets of advice about bundling up in winter or baking a fruit cobbler. As it turns out, they know a thing or two about navigating the workplace, too. Pearls of wisdom from grandma:

Thanks to our increasingly online (and visible) lives, it’s more im­­por­­tant than ever to know how to apologize well. When you wrong some­­­­­one—a colleague or a customer—apologize by doing three things:

Executive coach Joel Garfinkle quotes Peter Drucker as noting that past ­leaders knew how to tell, while future leaders would know how to ask. Here’s how Garfinkle advises asking others for feedback on your performance:

An admin reader recently wrote, “My goodness, will you please do a piece that tells people the difference between ‘intra’ and ‘inter’? While you’re at it, ‘effect’ vs. ‘affect’ wouldn’t hurt, either.”
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