work habits

don’t bring cupcakes to work when you’re new on the job

A reader writes: I am a young (25) woman who has just been promoted into a mid-level management position, managing about 25 staff. This is my first job in management, and while I am very confident going into the new role, I naturally have some nerves about the huge change in my career. The team […]

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my work habits are going to get me fired

A reader writes: I started a new contract two months ago. The projects are exciting, the team is inspiring, and I am doing a terrible job. It takes me two or three times as long as expected to perform simple tasks (like drafting documents that are standard in our field or corresponding with colleagues in […]

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am I the office jerk?

A reader writes: First, some background: My manager is pretty terrible. She’s very loud, rude, walks up to you while you are talking to a customer and just begins talking over you, and doesn’t have any idea what her direct reports are doing. It’s crappy, but she’s definitely not leaving any time soon. Her boss […]

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can I knit during work meetings?

A reader writes: I work in a federal agency. I’ve been in my current position for about five years, but have recently taken on some responsibilities that require me to be in several all-day meetings per month, some with coworkers in my office, and some with collegues from other state and federal agencies. I realized […]

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can I tell clients that I don’t talk on the phone?

A reader writes: I’m a freelance graphic artist. I work with some regular clients, but a lot of my work is one-off projects for small business clients. I’m always open to new clients, though I also have a steady stream of work, enough to be comfortable. I get some of my work through a freelancer […]

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how much do deadlines really matter in your field?

A reader writes: I’m an English professor, and I would love some advice from you and your readers about how to prepare students for deadlines in the work world. My colleagues and I have a disagreement about this. My back story is that when I was a procrastinating college student, I got into the habit […]

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chill out with the bone-crushing handshakes

A reader writes: I’m wondering if this is something that I am out of touch with or if this is something that is bothering others worldwide. I recently finished a few months of interviewing for various positions and attending close-out meetings for my previous job. About 99% of the time when I shook someone’s hands, […]

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how do I hold it together at work during a personal crisis?

A reader writes: I’m looking for some advice on how you effectively manage a team while you’re drowning in personal issues. In the past year, I’ve had what can only be described as a Series of Unfortunate Events that honestly seem almost comical in their frequency and severity: I had emergency abdominal surgery, had to […]

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how to be happier at work

How happy you are with your job can have a significant impact on the amount of happiness in your life overall. And yet for some people, work is a major source of unhappiness and dissatisfaction. If that’s true for you, it might be because you’re in the wrong job. But sometimes you make yourself much […]

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