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.

One way for American Airlines employees to get the bosses’ attention is to compete for it. The airline created its “Customer Cup” contest to spur competition among employee teams at different airports in an effort to improve processes and products and upgrade customer service, said Mark Mitchell, managing director of customer experience.

Just 32% of employees have private offices, down from 36% in 1997, according to the 2010 survey of 414 office-space managers by the International Facil­­ity Management Asso­­ci­­a­­tion.

Some people would never “friend” a co-worker on Facebook; they try hard to keep work and personal lives separate. Others blend the two—letting professional and personal contacts co-exist on social media sites. If you’re attempting to let your friends and co-workers mingle on your Facebook page, keep this tip in mind:

Ten people to include in your network: 1. The Mentor 2. The Coach 3. The Industry Insider 4. The Trendsetter 5. The Connector 6. The Idealist 7. The Realist  8. The Visionary 9. The Partner 10. The Wannabe.

What’s the best way to get a job right now? Networking. What's the best way to network? According to many experts, via LinkedIn.com. The online service offers innovative ways to interact professionally with colleagues and build your web of contacts and connections. Here are six ways LinkedIn can advance your career.

Are you considering using personality or other screening tests to decide which job applicants to hire? If so, make sure you fully understand what you are doing and how those tests work. There are plenty of companies eager to sell you tests and assessments that they say will take some of the work out of the screening processes. But if those tests aren’t valid and end up screening out members of a protected class, you may be buying more than a test.

Could co-workers benefit from a little more interaction? At public relations firm Conover Tuttle Pace, employees swap desks for a few weeks to spark cross-company chats and fresh ideas. Here's how they do it:

Take this quiz to see how well you understand the general guidelines for preparing presentations.
There’s still no substitute for a handwritten note, and a face-to-face conversation is still more powerful than an e-mail. Here are four ways to revive old-school ways of building relationships in the business world:
Question: “I have been having problems with a female co-worker. 'Kelly' and I have always had a friendly relationship, but now she’s avoiding me ... I’d like to talk privately and get everything out in the open, but I don’t think Kelly will allow it. What should I do?”— Just a Friend