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Living and work Tips at Work

Time for Spring Cleaning

When you think about the word spring, your mind automatically goes to images of blossoming flowers, light rain and fields filled with wildflowers. Before you start running through the hills and singing, you should stop and think about spring cleaning. Most people remember to clean out their house during the spring months, donating items to charities and removing the trash that piled up during the winter. While cleaning your house is always helpful, so is cleaning your office space. Spring is the perfect time to clean out your desk or work area and get rid of all the old and outdated things.

During the winter, you naturally feel a little run down and have less energy than you do during the warmer months. Instead of throwing things in the trash can, you tuck things inside the desk. You might plan to clean out your desk later, but later never comes. The warmer temperatures that come during spring give you the chance to clean out your desk and encourage your co-workers to do the same thing. This lets you stay healthy and get rid of the funk that plagues your office during the winter.

Start by setting up trash bins around the office. Label the bins for different types of materials, including paper, metal and miscellaneous items. You can recycle paper and metal to make money for the whole office. Once you fill a bin, place the junk to one side and fill a second trash bag. Take the items to a local recycling center, and trade in those objects for cash. Use the cash that you make by recycling to treat your co-workers to an office party or lunch away from the office. You might be surprised at how much recyclable trash you have sitting inside your desks.

I believe that  cleaning and organizing is a process – and a practice – not a project.

MEAGAN FRANCIS

Go through each drawer or space in your desk carefully. Make separate piles for things that you need to keep, documents that need filing and items that are trash. Remove everything from your desk and arrange those items into the stacks or piles. Once your drawers are completely empty, wipe out the insides with a high-quality cleaner. After the cleaner dries, carefully arrange everything back inside with a filing system. You should also take time to remove anything you have on top of your desk. Clean the surface of your desk with a good cleanser.

Most office workers do not realize the number of germs circulating through the space. Make sure that everyone cleans their mouse and keyboard with an antibacterial or disinfectant cleaner that removes any germs or bacteria. Spring cleaning is the perfect time to clean out the kitchen space, break room or any other shared spaces. Cleanse the surfaces with antibacterial cleaners that kill any germs. You can also open any windows in the office. The fresh spring air that sweeps through removes any funky or unusual smells from the space, making your work area not only look better, but smell better too. When you feel better about your work space, you might find yourself working harder.

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Employees Job Guideline Tips at Work

Guidelines for Working During Maternity Leave

Many new moms imagine maternity leave as a relaxing time to bond with their new baby. You might picture spending your maternity leave taking long walks with your baby, gazing into his precious eyes and reading your favorite children’s books over and over as he drifts off to sleep.

However, many moms face the reality of feeling pressured to work during their maternity leave. Conversely, some moms are disappointed that their office does not remain in contact with them during their time away. Each mom has different expectations when it comes to maternity leave. It is important to discuss both your needs and your employer’s needs long before the baby arrives.

Pre-planning and clear communication are the keys to a successful maternity leave. Several months before your due date, request a meeting with your supervisor. During this meeting, discuss the details of your upcoming maternity leave. How long will you be away from the office? Are you willing to accept phone calls or e-mails? Who will cover your normal duties during your leave? What paperwork needs to be completed? Does your supervisor have any concerns regarding your absence? Acquiring clear answers to these questions will align your plans with your employer’s expectations regarding your maternity leave.

Every time a woman leaves the workforce because she can’t find or afford childcare, or she can’t work out a flexible arrangement with her boss, or she has no paid maternity leave, her family’s income falls down a notch. Simultaneously, national productivity numbers decline.
Madeleine M. Kunin

As you approach your last day of work, compose an e-mail to send to your supervisor outlining your plan for maternity leave. Once your supervisor approves the plan, forward the e-mail to each of your colleagues. The e-mail should clearly state the start and end date of your maternity leave. It should also give guidelines for communicating with you during this time. For instance, you could state that you are unavailable by phone, but you will be checking your e-mail around 10:00am each Tuesday and Thursday to deal with any pressing issues.

Your e-mail should also give information regarding the contact person for your projects while you are away.

Once you, your supervisor and your colleagues all understand your maternity leave plan, you are free to relax and enjoy the most important thing: your new baby! Be polite, but consistent about your communication guidelines, and be sure to keep up with your end of the communication plan.

Work projects will be there when you return to your job, but you only get to spend the newborn days with your baby once. By planning carefully and practicing open communication, you can enjoy your maternity leave without alienating your workplace.

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Job Guideline Tips at Work

5 Tips for a Successful Career

The politics and the requirements for having a successful career are changing in the wake of the Internet revolution. Certain things such as privacy and separation of the work and home life are not as important any more. Many more people are performing well in careers that have less to do with their college degree and more to do with their personal skill set.

Below are five tips for a successful career in the modern era.

1) Love what you do

In times of recession, employers want to know that you want to be there working that job. The worst hire is the person who is doing it for the money.

If you limit yourself to apply only to jobs that you truly enjoy, you will find that your selectivity will pay off with a much more positive response. Even if you do not get the first job that you apply for, this positive response will keep you going until you actually land one.

2) Specificity in your skill set is an asset

In past generations, people had to wear many hats. However, now your resume should detail your specific certifications and skill sets, especially when you are dealing with the IT industry.

Employers do not want to train employees any more. They want to know that you can step right into the position and do the job at hand immediately. In order to make yourself the most attractive to employers, be specific in your presentation of what you can do.

There are direct paths to a successful career. But there are plenty of indirect paths, too.

Clayton M. Christensen

3) Do not expect long term employment

You should begin looking for your next job from the second that you get your first one. No matter how good your performance is, the very task-oriented nature of the business market today means that an employer may let you go after a superb performance because they simply have no more need for your skill set.

4) Learn on the job

If you like a company and want to stay there, take it upon yourself to learn other aspects of the job and make yourself irreplaceable. You will need a great deal of self-discipline to do this.

The boss will not necessarily want to take the time to teach you other skills, but if he or she sees you taking this responsibility on your own, it will definitely be rewarded. This is really like looking for another job (tip 3) within the same company.

5) Learn the politics

The bottom line is that people want to work with people they like, especially in times of recession. Learn the internal politics as quickly as you can and find your place within it. Make it a point to make yourself likable.

Categories
Employer Tips at Work

How to Be a Good Manager

Being a good manager involves a wide range of skills and responsibilities. Managing other people effectively and successfully is not an easy thing to do. A good manager must encourage employees to put forth their best effort. A good manager must promote team work, high productivity and high morale among the employees. A good manager must always put the company’s needs above his or her own, creating a healthy working environment that benefits the company and also its employees.

Be an Example to Others

Good managers must set an example for their employees by taking their job seriously and expecting the same from their employees. Arriving on time for work every day is a good start. Tardiness shows a lack of respect for the job, the employees and the company. Personal business should be left at home. Personal phone calls and personal emails should be avoided during working hours. Personal family matters should not be discussed with employees.

Use your own personality to guide your workers for the day. You can be laid back if that is the style that best suits you. It is also possible to be a disciplinarian if need be as well. Do whatever you think needs to be done to get the most out of your team. Leadership is all about pushing the right buttons. Leadership is also about showing you will do things your own way. Pushing others to be their best while staying within yourself is the challenge you will be up against.

Good managers must demonstrate strong leadership, management and communication skills. They should be well-focused, have specific goals and also the ability to accomplish those goals. They must be able to communicate effectively with their employees to get their message across. They must be able to manage an often-diverse group of people and pull them together as a team that can get the job done.

Show that you can set goals within your team. Accomplishing this goal will also prove that your team will follow your lead. Good leaders will have the blessing of their team when planning and executing key goals. Even if the employees don’t like the boss, they will follow him because he has their respect.

Good managers must also be excellent listeners, welcoming the ideas of their employees while encouraging their creativity and input. One of the most important tasks of a good manager is to recognize talent and potential in an employee and encourage it. Good managers must also effectively address employee concerns and deal with internal problems quickly and efficiently before they get out of hand.

A manager is not a person who can do the work better than his men; he is a person who can get his men to do the work better than he can.
Frederick W. Smith 

Good managers must possess excellent time management skills to accomplish their goals in a timely fashion. A major component of successful time management is the ability to set reasonable goals and deadlines and to appropriately delegate responsibilities to others when necessary to meet those goals and deadlines.

Good managers understand the importance of bringing good people into the company. When interviewing candidates for a position, only those with strong resumes showing relevant experience and the necessary qualifications should be considered. Managers should hire people who are a good fit with the company, not somebody they owe a favor to or one of their friends or relatives. Such a scenario all too often leads to favoritism, employee resentment and a decrease in employee morale and productivity.

Good managers never use the tough boss approach or try to control or bully their employees. Good managers never take credit for their employees’ ideas and contributions and they never blame their employees for their own mistakes.

Good managers encourage a healthy and cooperative work environment and most importantly, they respect their employees and always show their appreciation for a job well done.