work habits

my boss has 10,000 unread emails

A reader writes: Is it ever normal to have 10,000+ unread emails in your professional inbox? Yesterday I inadvertently saw that my boss had 10,965 unread emails. She is a general counsel of a medium-sized company and does not seem to be overloaded with work. The majority of her team (around six people) are very […]

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how can I recover from being the office grump?

A reader writes: I’m in my first year in my job. I’m an open book, so people know when I’m happy and when I’m not. Naturally when I’m upset or angry at work, people can tell. I have been really stressed and haven’t been nice at my office lately recently. Basically I’ve been grumpy. Is […]

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why the littlest things at work can be so maddening

Judging by the mail I get at here, a lot of us feel quite strongly about relatively minor things at work. Some pet peeves make perfect sense, like being annoyed with people who leave food splattered inside the microwave or thinking dark thoughts about that guy who takes all his calls on speaker phone. But […]

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how to criticize someone’s work without making it awkward

So, you’re working with someone whose work isn’t exactly what you need it to be, and you need to ask them to do it differently. Maybe you’re their manager, or maybe you’re a peer who’s overseeing the project they’re working on. Maybe the correction is relatively minor, or maybe it’s a big deal. Either way, […]

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I’m addicted to snooping in my boss’s email

A reader writes: I have access to my boss’s email account so that I can send email on his behalf/search for things in his folders. It’s not a privilege that’s supposed to be used often. Unfortunately, I’m a compulsive snooper, and I find myself opening his account a few times a week to read emails. […]

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do I really have to use formal openings and closings in every email?

A reader writes: I just attended a training where I was told a professional email MUST begin with one of the following: • Hello [Name], • Good morning/afternoon/evening [Name], • Greetings [Name], • Dear [Name], • Welcome back [Name], • Thank you [Name], The trainer also said a professional email MUST end with one of […]

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I have no motivation to do my job

A reader writes: I am absolutely done with my current job. I’ve been here for just over six years now and, honestly, I probably stayed here longer than I should have (I was starting to get bored around two years ago). However, my coworkers are lovely, my boss is super supportive, the benefits are amazing […]

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