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PRODUCTIVITY

3 questions to ask in your daily standup meetings

A daily standup meeting can be a highly effective way to keep your staff motivated and moving on important tasks. This 10-minute meeting, used in a variety of workplaces, provides an opportunity for a quick check-in on the day’s priorities. As the name implies, participants stand up—a posture that discourages long discussion. The meeting is so short no one bothers to find a seat. You should schedule the meeting at the same time and place deal. The start of the shift, after staff arrives and gets settled for work but before the office opens to clients, is one common time to schedule the regular standup meeting. You should also start on time rather than wait for latecomers. You can use the time to review ongoing projects such as filing backlog…. . . . read more

3 steps to determine what office help you need

By Diane Camacho When you are at the point where you know you have to get office help, take the time to determine what help you need.  Your neighbor’s brother-in-law may need a job, but he may not be the best bet. The following three step process can help you hire the right help.  Step 1 – Track your non-billable time Create a client/matter number for your non-billable time and track it just as if it were client billable. You are in effect paying for it, so track it. Don’t get too complicated. Simple entries that will remind you what type of task you did and how long it took are fine. Perhaps things like: Research new software File papers Type pleading forms Look for insurance brokers Make folders for client files… . . . read more

REMOTE WORK

Digital presenteeism: Faking you care, faking you’re even there

By Lynne Curry A surprising number of employees, determined to hold on to their “work from home” status and aware that managers and others suspect remote employees of working less than their required hours, practice digital presenteeism. Digital presenteeism involves remote employees demonstrating they’re hard workers by responding to additional emails, attending additional meetings, and contributing comments in every meeting. According to a recent job trends report, the average remote employee works 67 additional minutes daily in an effort to convince managers they’re fully engaged in their jobs, https://www.flexjobs.com/remote-jobs/company/talentwise. The same report reveals that a record 85% of managers find it difficult to know for sure if their remote employees are productive. The problem—these actions erode morale and don’t equate with higher productivity. Said one mid-level manager who called me this… . . . read more

PRODUCTIVITY

Happy Thanksgiving: Here are four good ways to get your work done before the long weekend

Many managers will agree that the most difficult part of their job is finding time to get all the work done. And, while everyone loves a day off or a long weekend, it’s hard to make up for any lost workdays. So here are four good time management recommendations from workflow advisor Jason Womack, leadership speaker and author of “Your Best Just Got Better: Work Smarter, Think Bigger, Make More.” These recommendations cover interruption management, meeting time management, and how to find little gems of time throughout the day. 1. Head off the interrupters First is to minimize the interruptions. Don’t expect to do away with them entirely, because any professional office “is a high-interruption environment.” But they can surely be controlled. Suppose the managing physician comes in several times a day… . . . read more

REMOTE WORK

Make online team meetings work for you

By Lynne Curry If you dread online meetings–attending them, hosting them–and long for meetings to become more than a necessary evil, you can make it happen. Recently, I hosted a two-day, 15-hour meeting that the 17 attendees said “zoomed by,” “was fun, kept me engaged the entire time;” and “made an hour seem like five minutes.” Here’s how we did it. A “you” start We started with the “real,” with questions like “how is remote working for you this week?” Real value Before I launched into the first topic, I asked everyone what they hoped the meeting focused on and what results they wanted from it. Everyone listens to the same radio station, WIFM, “what’s in it for me”. If your meeting attendees know from the start, they’ll receive value,… . . . read more

Your work honeymoon is over: What now?

By Lynne Curry The job that was so exciting when you landed it now bores you. A year ago, you would have joined the throngs of employees exiting their employers in the Great Resignation. Now you hesitate. What if media accounts about the looming recession result in any shiny new job you accept evaporating within months if you’re laid off as “last hired, first let go”? Maybe you need to hunker down, and breathe new life back into a job that’s more secure, even if it has grown stale. Except—can you? Or will you have as much success as when you pour water on dehydrated food on a camping trip, and it still doesn’t taste fresh? If you’re caught in this bind, what’s happened to you is predictable and you… . . . read more

MANAGING STAFF

Quiet firing meets quiet quitting

By Lynne Curry Quiet quitting, the employee behavior pattern that swept through the nation this summer after a viral TikTok video in July, has met its match—quiet firing. Employers, disgusted by employees that consider it justified to do the bare minimum at work, are blessing these employees out the door. Managers take action In September 2022, 91% of 1,000 managers surveyed reported taking action against quiet quitters or firing them (1 in 3 managers have responded to ‘quiet quitting’ with ‘quiet firing’ – ResumeBuilder.com). One in three of the surveyed managers reported firing quiet quitters; 75% of the 1000 managers described firing quiet quitters as justifiable. Managers that didn’t outright fire quiet quitters took other actions. 27% of them denied raises to quiet quitters; 23% denied promotions to quiet quitters…. . . . read more

PRODUCTIVITY

Quiet quitting: The new ‘just say no’ employee pushback

By Lynne Curry Gone are the days when employers could count on employees competing to go “above and beyond” to rise faster in their organizations. Employers now face “quiet quitting,” a trend that emerged in July 2022 from a viral TikTok video to become a phenomenon noted on Wikipedia and discussed in Forbes and the Wall Street Journal. Quiet quitting is more than employees setting boundaries or intentionally putting a hard stop to their work day or work week so they can create a work/life balance. Checked-out quiet quitters simply slack their way through their workweek by doing the bare minimum needed to keep their jobs, overloading their coworkers, frustrating their supervisors, and draining productivity from their employers. According ResumeBuilder.com’s August 2022 survey of 1000 U.S. employees, 21% of surveyed… . . . read more

MANAGING STAFF

Workplaces slow to get well from COVID-19 damage

By Lynne Curry You’ve heard that “long-haulers,” individuals with long COVID, suffer persistent COVID-19 symptoms that erode their quality of life. Anyone scanning the workplace soon realizes that some employers suffer from “long COVID”. A few refuse employers treatment, expecting to get well on their own. Three symptoms signal an employer suffers “long COVID”. Difficult to fill vacancies and continual turnover Job openings outnumber available workers by 5.46 million. So many potential employees have left the labor market to become self-employed, or gig and contract workers, that employers with vacancies continue to fight talent wars. Desperate to fill their positions, long hauler employers hire hastily, hoping the “best of the worst” will work out. Some new hires don’t last a day. Others leave without notice within their first four months,… . . . read more

PRODUCTIVITY

Voice technology can give you an extra set of hands

By Philips Dictation From robotics to augmented reality and beyond, the growing prominence of technology’s role in business has been fascinating. But there is also concern that some types of technology, such as AI, may threaten people’s jobs by performing functions or even “thinking” as humans do. However, the reality is that the development of AI-related technologies, especially speech-to-text, is designed to complement human work—not replace it. There are many ways the rising popularity and adoption of speech-to-text help enhance workflows and make the day easier and more enjoyable for employees in all kinds of roles. Utilizing advanced voice solutions also helps prepare employees for future technological evolution in the workplace, keeping them on the leading edge with desirable, transferrable skills. For support staff, this is a win-win, as evidenced by these key benefits… . . . read more


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