workplace practices

our fundraiser lets us “pie a manager in the face”

A reader writes: Where I work there, are a little over 100 employees with eight department managers. About five years ago, upper management decided to set up a committee comprised of one person from each department to plan activities and events for all employees throughout the year, such as charity fundraisers, the office holiday party, […]

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is it bad to lay people off instead of firing them?

A reader writes: What do you think of the policy of letting problematic employees go by eliminating their position? I work at an organization that does this instead of firing people. Among long-time employees there’s a joke that it’s impossible to get fired here — they can think of one guy, nine years back, who […]

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my employer requires us all to do tai chi in the office

A reader writes: I am struggling with management’s requirement that all employees of our small nonprofit participate in twice weekly tai chi sessions. These are paid for by the organization and held in-house, during the work day. When first presented to staff, tai chi was billed as a team-building activity that would last for 12 […]

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can I nap on my break?

A reader writes: I work for a large company that has a large common break and dining area, which has dining tables and booths like a restaurant, along with many televisions along the walls showing various network and cable shows. They also serve food and beverages. This area is an employees-only area and isn’t accessible […]

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everyone in my office works while they’re on vacation

A reader writes: I recently moved from a nonprofit to a Fortune 50 company and I could use some perspective on an issue I’ve encountered: my team sort of…ignores vacations. There’s an expectation that people will be available for calls and on email even when on vacation. This applies to both pressing, urgent problems requiring […]

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can I go barefoot at work?

A reader writes: I work in a legal office. I am the assistant but I sit in an open area outside my boss’s office. I wear business casual clothing and shoes. However, my feet get uncomfortable in the shoes. I often take my shoes off and go barefoot. They’re under the desk for the most part, […]

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