office culture http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/12468/all en-US Six Surefire Office Fundraising Ideas http://www.wisebread.com/six-surefire-office-fundraising-ideas <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/six-surefire-office-fundraising-ideas" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/2984545584_0013ff6b11_z.jpg" alt="bake sale" title="bake sale" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="188" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>What if you find yourself in the position of needing to raise money for something at your workplace? It happens. Sometimes, it is as innocuous as needing a &ldquo;birthday fund.&rdquo; In other circumstances, a coworker might have a medical emergency. Through my many years in various workplaces, I have participated in a number of office fundraisers. At one time or another, I have used one of these six methods below with good results.</p> <p>Personally, I do not like fundraisers that involve discount cards, auctioning off bachelors or &ldquo;slaves,&rdquo; blatantly asking wealthy people for help, holding up fishing nets, or scrip. (My issue with scrip, while it does assist with record-keeping, is that unless I find things I definitely want to buy, I am just making a donation.)</p> <p>My caveat &mdash; before you embark on any worksite fundraising, do your homework. Make sure you do not run afoul of any state or local laws, or company policies or procedures. When in doubt, check. Also important &mdash; never, ever pressure or coerce anyone into donating money. That annoys people, and an unhappy person will be the first one to complain. Make any fundraising strictly voluntary. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-frugal-office-party-foods">The Best Frugal Office Party&nbsp;Foods</a>)</p> <h2>1. Bake Sale</h2> <p><em>At work.</em> The reason I emphasize &ldquo;at work&rdquo; is that (a) nobody wants to do it on a weekend, and (b) you&rsquo;ll get much better participation and attendance. A well-publicized, amply stocked bake sale can bring quick cash. Of course, a good part of the donation occurs when people volunteer to bake goods for the sale. Besides many commitments from volunteer bakers, you&rsquo;ll need tables, plastic bags, saran wrap, plates, tablecloths, markers, food-handling gloves, signs, a cash box, and change.</p> <p>Encourage your bakers to package items nicely. Don&rsquo;t try to sell whole <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-ultra-quick-homemade-desserts">pies or cakes</a> &mdash; pieces sell faster, with a higher mark-up. I like to group items by tables and sell for $1, $2, $3, etc. If you have the supplies, placing individual stickers on items helps, too. This is not a time to dicker &mdash; if you do a bake sale right, you can be done with it in an hour. Give your helpers fanny packs stocked with change, so you don&rsquo;t have a line at the cash box. It&rsquo;ll go much faster.</p> <p>Encourage your bakers to not only bake cookies, but also to think about making healthy items. Packages of nuts, energy bars, and even homemade hummus go rapidly. More popular still are bowls of chili or nachos, if you can get permission to plug in <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-great-cheap-and-easy-crock-pot-recipes">crock-pots</a>. I recommend that you hold a bake sale between 9 and 10 a.m. in an office or facility, when people are starting to think about coffee and a snack. They can patronize you instead of the neighborhood coffee shop.</p> <p><strong>Difficulty: </strong>Medium</p> <h2>2. The Good Old Car Wash</h2> <p>Honestly, this is not my favorite fundraiser &mdash; it&rsquo;s really hard work, assuming you do it right, and you need to devote a half-day to it. However, they really do work, particularly if you can hold them at a grocery store &mdash; people are more willing to contribute because they can simultaneously shop. Supplies needed: hoses, buckets, car-washing soap (don&rsquo;t use dishwashing soap, which can harm a car&rsquo;s finish), and soft rags or sponges. Advertise, post signs, and send people out to hold up signs. I personally prefer &ldquo;$5/car&rdquo; over &ldquo;donation,&rdquo; because a set price eliminates the dickering process.</p> <p><strong>Difficulty:</strong> Difficult, because of the logistics &mdash; and you need a lot of helpers and elbow grease</p> <h2>3. Bingo</h2> <p>That&rsquo;s right, BINGO! Just today I called bingo for an hour and a half. Set up during a lunchtime break, pass out cards and markers, and call out those letters and numbers. If permitted, charge per card and offer inexpensive prizes. Needed: a bingo set, microphone, and prizes. Savvy bingo-goers will work several cards at a time. A game of bingo runs about five minutes, so plan prizes accordingly. When you get down to the last few minutes, run a &ldquo;blackout&rdquo; game.</p> <p><strong>Difficulty</strong>: Very easy, particularly when you have a captive lunchtime audience</p> <h2>4. Raffles</h2> <p>AKA &ldquo;drawings.&rdquo; This one is trickier legally. Be sure to check what is allowed in your state and at your workplace. Sometimes the terminology matters.</p> <p>What to raffle? Homemade items go well, such as fudge, cookies, or a dinner.&nbsp;Needed: advertising and prizes.</p> <p><strong>Difficulty:</strong> Easy</p> <h2>5. Silent Auctions</h2> <p>If you have a real go-getter committee that can secure great donations, these can be a lot of fun. The trick is to obtain items that people actually <em>want</em> &mdash; <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-great-wines-under-10-dollars">fine wines</a>, gourmet chocolates, dinner at a trendy restaurant, quality art, interesting pottery, etc. It&rsquo;s embarrassing if the donated item just sits on the table at a minimum bid. Needed: donated items, papers on which to write bids, and a nice tablecloth. These usually take place at some sort of event.</p> <p><strong>Difficulty:</strong> Medium, for the legwork it takes to secure good donations</p> <h2>6. The Office &ldquo;Pool&rdquo;&nbsp;</h2> <p>You have probably seen these for sports events and baby &ldquo;due date&rdquo; guesses. Again, make sure there are no prohibitions and that the terms of the pool extremely clear, so there are no arguments about who won. Supplies needed: a big chart.</p> <p><strong>Difficulty:</strong> Easy</p> <p><em>Have you done any fundraising? Do you have tips for Wise Bread readers?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/marla-walters">Marla Walters</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/six-surefire-office-fundraising-ideas">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-jobs-proven-to-make-you-live-longer">5 Jobs Proven to Make You Live Longer</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-super-cool-ways-people-have-quit-their-jobs">6 Super-Cool Ways People Have Quit Their Jobs</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-smart-things-to-do-with-your-bonus">6 Smart Things to Do With Your Bonus</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/laid-off-make-sure-you-get-your-unemployment">Laid Off? You May Have to Fight for Unemployment Benefits</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tips-for-finding-legitimate-work-at-home-opportunities">Tips for Finding Legitimate Work at Home Opportunities</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career and Income bake sales fundraising office culture raffles Wed, 16 May 2012 09:48:15 +0000 Marla Walters 929142 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Ways to Check Your Ego at the Door http://www.wisebread.com/small-business/10-ways-to-check-your-ego-at-the-door <div class="field field-type-link field-field-url"> <div class="field-label">Link:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="http://www.openforum.com/articles/10-ways-to-check-your-ego-at-the-door" target="_blank">http://www.openforum.com/articles/10-ways-to-check-your-ego-at-the-door</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/small-business/10-ways-to-check-your-ego-at-the-door" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000002233134Small.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="166" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Open dialogue and collaboration can take your organization to the next level when exceptional ideas are embraced for their inherent value, regardless of the source. But being able to listen to both grassroots and world-renowned thought leaders and champion employee-engagement and customer-feedback programs requires checking your ego at the door (and getting your managers to do the same).</p> <p><b>Focus on the team&rsquo;s goal, not individual bragging rights</b>.</p> <p>Whether leader or follower, engage with and listen to people who are more talented (in certain areas) than you are. All of you are needed to invent something new, find real-world applications to lofty ideas, or react to changing conditions.</p> <p><b>Recognize that creativity, wisdom, and brilliance are packaged in many different forms</b>.</p> <p>The most eloquent or persuasive speaker is not always the person who dreams up the best ideas. The person who appears to be the plainest may be the most innovative. The quirky, the ornery, or the humorous may hold the answers, give the insights, or articulate the direction you seek.</p> <p><b>Acknowledge that anyone can contribute to the conversation, analysis, and, ultimately, execution</b>.</p> <p>Anyone can reinvent the game or disrupt the industry, whether he is knowledgeable or oblivious to how things have always been done or whether she has witnessed change over a few months or many years.</p> <p><b>Appreciate those who seem less astute than you</b>.</p> <p>If these folks are your target audience, you&rsquo;ll do well to understand what they think, predict how they&rsquo;ll react to offers, gauge their spending habits, etc. even if they are less fashion-oriented and technologically-savvy than you. That is, those who are not innovators and early adopters buy stuff too.</p> <p><b>Learn something new</b>.</p> <p>Master a new skill, gain a new piece of knowledge, or do a combination of both. At some point in the learning process, you will feel doubt and frustration, ask for help, or discover that someone knows more about a subject than you do. Respect for those in another field and patience for those still learning in your area of expertise will grow.</p> <p><b>Solicit and apply useful feedback</b>.</p> <p>Avoid the compulsion to interrupt, defend yourself, or turn anything less-than-a-praiseful comment into a condemnation of your entire project, program, or product line. Even if the other person, department, or group doesn&rsquo;t fully understand your perspective and grasp your role, you&rsquo;ll gain insight into how you and your team are perceived.</p> <p><b>Be honest with yourself about your strengths and weaknesses</b>.</p> <p>By acknowledging areas of capability and struggle, you should be able to more clearly define the professional attributes that complement and threaten you.</p> <p><b>Don&rsquo;t be afraid to try out a new idea. </b></p> <p>Many great ideas get tossed out because managers are afraid of failure. Certainly, do whatever is necessary to achieve success and avoid failure. Find ways to minimize the negative impact and financial consequence in the trial phase. Attend to details. Start small.</p> <p><b>After test runs, reflect on the worthiness of ideas and their execution</b>.</p> <p>Gather lessons learned from all efforts, successful and not-so-successful ones.</p> <p><b>Listen to people with whom you are supposed to be connecting</b>.</p> <p>Check for common understanding of topics, whether you agree or not. Realize that some use subtle means of making a point, encouraging further inquiry and reflection. Others are direct, leaving no doubt of intent. Understand and value all styles of respectful communication.</p> <p>Alone, you can make good decisions. Independently, you can craft a feasible, cost-effective plan suitable for your business&rsquo;s mission and team&rsquo;s goal. But collaboration means expecting and envisioning greater opportunities, ones that never occurred to you in solitude. Checking your ego means abandoning pursuit of approval, attention, appreciation, and control; and then, channeling your energy to discovering and building the best that is possible.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/julie-rains">Julie Rains</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/small-business/10-ways-to-check-your-ego-at-the-door">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/250-tips-for-small-business-owners">250+ Tips for Small Business Owners</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-inspiring-stories-of-normal-people-building-a-thriving-online-store">4 Inspiring Stories of Normal People Building a Thriving Online Store</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-credit-cards-for-small-businesses">The 5 Best Credit Cards for Small Businesses</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-tested-tips-for-creative-efficiency">15 Tested Tips for Creative Efficiency</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/basic-tips-for-investing-in-a-business-1">Basic Tips for Investing in a Business</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Small Business Resource Center collaboration creativity employee relations idea generation office culture small business Thu, 21 Jul 2011 18:13:17 +0000 Julie Rains 620099 at http://www.wisebread.com Stop Slouching! 5 Ways to Improve Your Posture http://www.wisebread.com/stop-slouching-5-ways-to-improve-your-posture <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/stop-slouching-5-ways-to-improve-your-posture" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/yoga_posture.jpg" alt="Sitting with a straight back" title="Sitting with a straight back" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Forget the start of barbecue season.</p> <p>The month of May is all about bad backs and slouched shoulders.</p> <p>At least, that's the hope of chiropractic organizations, which have pushed to rechristen May as &quot;National Correct Posture Month.&quot; Doesn't have a springtime ring to it, but the reality is that scores of Americans exhibit poor posture, which can directly impact their health. Studies have indicated links between good posture and good health, and that's become an increasingly important relationship in a sedentary age of iPads and cubicle farms. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/fitness-for-people-who-hate-exercise">Fitness for People Who&nbsp;Hate Exercise</a>)</p> <p>&quot;When you are in good posture, it's as if you've lost 10 pounds,&quot; Patrice Winter, a physical therapist in Fairfax, VA, and a spokeswoman for the American Physical Therapy Association, told USA Today last year.</p> <p>The flip side isn't as pleasant. Bad posture can trigger significant back and neck pain and actually contribute to more serious problems in the digestive and cardio-pulmonary systems. Not to take money from the pockets of hard-working chiropractors, but correcting your posture is mostly a matter of commitment and conscious effort.</p> <p>Here's a look at five ways to improve your posture.</p> <h2>Sit With Support</h2> <p>Office jobs can be killer on one's posture. Ideally, you're sitting in a fancy office chair that provides sufficient lumbar support. But that isn't often the case. At least make sure you're sitting in a high-backed chair that offers solid support. Keep your back straight against the chair, with your hips as far back as possible. Sandwich a towel, pillow or other soft implement between the chair back and your own if there isn't enough support for your lower back.</p> <h2>Mind Your Feet</h2> <p>Spending money on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-case-for-expensive-shoes">high-quality shoes</a> is always a good idea. But if that isn't your style, at least forgo the flip-flops, high heels, and other support-less footwear a vast majority of the time. Settle on shoes that provide legitimate arch support. Some health experts urge women to stay away from heels any taller than one inch in height.</p> <h2>Take a Walk</h2> <p>Office-park workers, college kids, and others who spend inordinate amounts of time sitting at their desks must make time to stretch their legs. Sitting for long periods of time encourages slouching. Get up from your desk and take a brief stroll at least once an hour. Workers should also check to see if a stand-up desk is an acceptable alternative. Not only will moving and standing improve your posture, but it might actually save your life. Recent studies have shown that people who sit for most of the day are way more likely to <a href="http://health.yahoo.net/experts/menshealth/most-dangerous-thing-youll-do-all-day">die of a heart attack</a>.</p> <h2>Make It a Focus</h2> <p>Posture isn't something most people think about during the course of a day. Routinely force yourself to step back and examine your current posture. Take a long, hard look in a mirror and scrutinize your typical stance. Tuck in your chin, pull in your stomach muscles, and stretch the spine. Fasten a couple prominent messages to your desk as constant reminders. Clue in your friends and ask them to play &quot;posture police&quot; when they see you slouching.</p> <h2>Strengthen Your Core</h2> <p>Exercise should be a part of your daily life for multiple reasons, not the least of which is that it will help improve your posture. Even simple exercises meant to build your core and strengthen abdominal and back muscles can make a huge difference. Pilates, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/super-solid-yoga-tricks-to-help-you-relax">yoga</a>, and similar exercise courses are all great ways to get fit and improve your posture.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chris-birk">Chris Birk</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/stop-slouching-5-ways-to-improve-your-posture">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-wonderful-uses-for-witch-hazel">15 Wonderful Uses for Witch Hazel</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-sell-your-hair-for-cash">How to Sell Your Hair for Cash</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-foods-scientifically-proven-to-increase-your-lifespan">6 Foods Scientifically Proven to Increase Your Lifespan</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cheap-and-simple-sunburn-remedies-that-really-work">Cheap and Simple Sunburn Remedies That Really Work</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/curing-warts-removing-splinters-and-19-other-bizarre-uses-for-banana-peels">Curing Warts, Removing Splinters, and 19 Other Bizarre Uses for Banana Peels</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> General Tips Health and Beauty office culture posture sitting Wed, 11 May 2011 10:36:22 +0000 Chris Birk 540331 at http://www.wisebread.com Managing Employees Who Irritate Others http://www.wisebread.com/small-business/managing-employees-who-irritate-others <div class="field field-type-link field-field-url"> <div class="field-label">Link:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="http://www.openforum.com/idea-hub/topics/managing/article/tips-for-managing-employees-who-irritate-others-julie-rains" target="_blank">http://www.openforum.com/idea-hub/topics/managing/article/tips-for-managing-empl...</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/small-business/managing-employees-who-irritate-others" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000009459899XSmall.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="166" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Working in close quarters and spending a majority of waking hours together can lead to friction among your employees. Even the most sophisticated and well-meaning people can bring quirky behaviors to the workplace. Eliminate productivity-deflating problems by setting expectations for civility and intervening to deal with these common irritations.</p> <h3>Talking about Coworkers</h3> <p>A gossipy employee can easily start rumors, presumably based on a tiny bit of truthful information but misrepresenting a coworker. Suppositions supplant productive conversations. Unchecked gossip becomes destructive.</p> <p>Advise employees to bring comments about coworkers to supervisors, rather than discussing concerns among themselves. Give employees an avenue to confront problems without meddling in others' affairs or speculating about motivations based on incomplete, inaccurate information.</p> <h3>Ignoring Work-Related Problems</h3> <p>An overly optimistic, proud employee glosses over problems or pretends they don't exist. She may insist that she can handle minor glitches in the workday and is steadily, successfully working on solutions. A yet-to-be-discovered trouble may be brewing: perhaps a key account is upset about a late shipment or daily results on a production trial aren't being tracked according to protocol.</p> <p>Very often, a coworker has intimations that something is wrong but can't pinpoint the problem. He may be having a difficult time connecting with a customer contact who is now vetting new suppliers rather than returning phone calls to your company. He sees that a log isn't being updated on a daily basis but isn't privy to tracking requirements.</p> <p>Breakdowns in operational controls and workflows frequently cause these problems. Whatever the reason, employees lose effectiveness and become irritated when they suspect that a colleague is hiding or denying the severity of a problem.</p> <p>Encourage employees to bring problems to your attention. Ask them to give you the facts in a businesslike way without editorializing and assigning blame. Do your own investigation; you may discover that inventory hasn't been available for on-time shipment or the new system isn't capturing test data as expected. Address the source of the problem and follow up to make sure that operational changes yield hoped-for results.</p> <h3>Taking Care of Personal Concerns<strong> <br /> </strong></h3> <p>A talkative, socially-oriented employee may be tying up business phone lines or more likely, is found frequently chatting and texting on a cell phone during work hours. Engaging excessively in personal, non-work-related activities can be disruptive to colleagues.</p> <p>Avoid establishing a policy that is difficult to enforce, such as zero tolerance on phone calls. Set guidelines that acknowledge each employee's need to deal with some personal issues during the day while respecting workplace boundaries.</p> <p>Remind employees that visual barriers, such as cubicles, don't provide an audio barrier: others can overhear conversations without intentionally eavesdropping. Most employees will want to guard their own privacy whether or not they are concerned about disturbing coworkers. To accommodate personal business that can be handled only during traditional work hours, establish a break policy so that employees can leave their workspace and make phone calls or read and send text messages.</p> <h3>Being Insensitive</h3> <p>The offending employee displays a lack of appreciation for the colleagues. A newly hired employee mimics the accent of a peer during one-on-one training sessions. Another repeatedly tells vulgar jokes.</p> <p>Don't allow the offender to lay blame on the victim for being overly sensitive. Tell the employee how his actions affect others' perceptions: namely, that he seems unsophisticated, culturally clumsy, and unprofessional.He will most likely stop so that he can portray a polished image even if he doesn't care about the feelings of other employees.</p> <h3>Hoarding Office Supplies</h3> <p>One employee seems to have excessive amounts of office supplies on hand, typically stored in her desk. As a result, the rest of your staff always seem to be scrambling for a notepad and pencil, and quickly raid the supplies closet immediately after a delivery. These innocent persons may even seem to be the hoarders rather than the one or more employees who quietly stock their own shelves.</p> <p>Let employees know that &mdash; though your business won't keep nearly infinite stock on hand &mdash; you'll still make sure that they have the supplies they need. Assign a person to be in charge of ordering supplies according to a schedule or pre-set inventory level, and tell your staff to alert that person to needs. Devise a plan for unusual items with a long order-to-delivery lead time but generally, use next-day delivery services offered at no charge or arrange periodic trips to the store.</p> <h3>Constantly Needing Someone to Listen</h3> <p>The needy employee always seems to have a personal problem but doesn't have a reliable support system outside of work. He talks incessantly about various aspects of the problem, soliciting advice, rehashing failed solutions, and trying to get assistance. Productivity for the troubled employee and those surrounding him are low.</p> <p>Don't insist on a sterile, non-empathetic environment but don't let angst take over your workplace. Observe interactions so that you can approach the employee directly rather than referencing their coworkers. Tell the employee that work efforts are being compromised by ongoing, relentless discussions. If you discover that problems are deep and difficult to solve, make a referral to an outside counselor.</p> <h3>Communicate Your Expectations</h3> <p>Use your judgment to determine when to approach employees privately and when to hold a meeting to address problems. Ideally, schedule a weekly team meeting to discuss workplace problems along with business opportunities and successes. Place issues on the agenda rather than calling a special session to discuss irritating behaviors. Lay the foundation for appropriate interactions and remove fears of favoritism by giving all employees the same message at the same time in the same context.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/julie-rains">Julie Rains</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/small-business/managing-employees-who-irritate-others">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. 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