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.

When making a presentation, ward off audience boredom by making it interactive. Here are four ways to deliver, according to “5 Tips for Making Your Presentations More Social”:
Finding out that someone with your title and job description makes more money than you can rattle your nerves. Here’s how to handle it:
The EEOC has just issued final regulations implementing the Genetic Information Non-Discrimination Act (GINA), the federal law that makes it illegal for employers to use genetic information to make decisions about health insurance and employment. Download the final regs here, and then use them as the basis for reviewing your wellness program and other work processes that might violate GINA.
Question: “Last year, our company celebrated the holiday season at a bar near our office building.  This event was basically an “alcohol fest” that began after work and continued late into the evening. I never drink alcohol because my father died of alcoholism. Also, I really don’t care for the taste. However, I’ve found that when I decline a drink, people regard me as strange. Sometimes they become insistent and insulting, saying things like “What’s wrong with you?” or “Are you in recovery?”  Apparently, I am the only person in this entire group who doesn’t drink. It hurts to be called an oddball, so I’d like to be less conspicuous.  I was a new employee at last year’s party, but this time I want to be prepared.” —Abstainer

Administrative pros looking for a way to stretch their skills often turn toward certification. But do the Certified Professional Secretary (CPS) and Certified Administrative Professional (CAP) ratings help you advance your career? Or command a higher salary? Are they worth the work and cost?

Millions of companies and entrepreneurs are jumping into the social media world only to find their efforts aren’t capturing the results they’d hoped for. Half the battle is knowing which mistakes not to make. Here are the top 10 pitfalls companies make, according to Barry Libert, author of the new book Social Nation:

If your organization’s fiscal calendar works like many others, you’re right in the middle of the busiest time of the year. It’s budget season! While you’re reviewing past expenditures and making projections for 2011, don’t forget to factor in one of the most crucial aspects of the budget process: Convincing your chief financial officer to back your HR budget proposal.

Today’s economic climate has caused employers to cut budgets and workforces—and expect workers to do more with less. As they see colleagues laid off and their employers cutting back, employees are more concerned than ever about their own job security. It makes sense for employers to address stress issues in their workforces, since increased stress affects not only employees, but employers’ bottom lines.

Write more clearly and persuasively with this strategy, advises Lynn Gaertner-Johnston: Remember the “power of one idea.”  That is, one idea for each message, one idea for each paragraph, and one idea for each sentence. Here’s how to remake sentences using the “one idea” strategy.

“I’m worried the team won’t like my suggestions.” “I’m worried I didn’t give my boss enough time between flights.” “I’m worried they’ll eliminate my position.” Everybody worries sometimes, but too much worrying becomes a mental bad habit that costs time, money and personal sanity. What to do instead? Make worry WORK for you.