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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Standing up—not only when you take a break but also while working—can keep you comfortable and energized throughout the day. Studies of people using sit/stand workstations in the past few years indicate that the ability to shift position easily several times a day can reap many benefits:

You’re expecting an afternoon meeting to be stressful and charged with emotion. Should you provide coffee for your boss and the other meeting attendees? Or is all that caffeine likely to do more harm than good?

You're a model of efficiency ... except when it comes to that one task you dread. Whether it's filing, completing an assignment for your "difficult" manager or approaching the boss about a raise, you fall prey to the procrastination monster. You know the answer is "Just do it," so push yourself along with these tactics:

As customer satisfaction scores continue to decline, take a page from the Ritz-Carlton playbook to motivate your team and to improve the service you offer your customers.
In recent rulings, the Supreme Court clearly signaled its unwillingness to tolerate even the appearance of circumventing the nation’s anti-discrimination laws. Employers must have investigative procedures in place to help guide decision-making when an employee could be disciplined or terminated.

The most important two minutes of your speech occur before you take the stage. Practicing nonverbal cues, or body language, will “optimally configure your brain to deal with a stressful situation," says Harvard Business School professor Amy Cuddy.

Here’s why you’re distracted: The hub where your work happens—the computer—is also where endless distractions reside. To stay focused during the workday, let your deepest values become a more powerful guide to your behaviors.

Judges don’t want your job. They don’t see courtrooms as publicly funded HR offices, and will often try to defer to employer decisions as much as possible. That’s a huge advantage for employers. Capitalize on that by giving the court something to hang a favorable decision on. That something is often a clear and fair disciplinary process.

U.S. workers could use a little cheering up. We could all use less snark, more support in the workplace. What can you do about it?

A while back, Google set out to improve the skills of its managers. A bunch of statisticians compared correlations in the words and phrases that came up again and again in performance reviews, feedback surveys and recognition nominations.  The end result: a simple yet elegant list of eight things the best Google managers do:

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