Compassion at Work Matters

Are you hard on yourself?

I know I am.

Here is a story from my new book Bring Gratitude to prove it.

I made a huge mistake.

I thought I could finish the project by the end of the week. I was so wrong.

I didn’t realize how many people I had to depend on to get the project done. I stayed late. I ran around like a chicken with my head cut off, asking for answers so I could keep moving forward. I brought in a couple other people to help at the last minute, but it wasn’t enough.

I missed the deadline. The next window to get this project finished wouldn’t be for another three weeks because of the dependency on other teams. We would potentially lose thousands, maybe even millions, of dollars.

I cried. I called out sick. Just didn’t want to be anywhere near work.

And I blamed myself.

I called a friend from work and complained about my situation. He asked me a question:

“Was anyone else willing to take on this project?”

“No.”

“That’s right,” he said. “You were the only one willing to stick your neck out there trying to get this project done. Instead of beating yourself up, you should be congratulating yourself for trying so hard. Just because it didn’t work out the way you hoped, it doesn’t mean it’s a failure.”

Then he asked me another great question.

“What did you learn from this experience?”

I laughed and said, “Nothing,” which I knew wasn’t true.

As I thought about it, I realized that if I’d been more compassionate with myself, I would have known that I couldn’t do it all by myself. I should’ve brought in other people to help me sooner. It’s funny how not that long ago, I could see how my coworker needed to ask for help when she was in a similar situation, yet here I was, unwilling to admit I needed help. I realized that this was a skill I needed to work on to improve my happiness and my career.

In retrospect, I was so glad I got caught in this situation. It showed me that I had a lot of internal work to do. I resolved to focus on asking for help sooner. I knew that practicing this in everyday situations would help me build up my strength to do it when I needed help the most, so I didn’t get caught in a similar situation in the future.

If you are interested in bringing more compassion into work then I suggest starting with gratitude. You can get the “Become 31% More Productive” one sheet that helps you bring more gratitude and compassion into your life.

It’s Alive!

I looked on Amazon and couldn’t believe my eyes.

There it was.

Right there for anyone to buy.

My book is ready to make an impact.

Now the hard part begins.

Actually selling the book.

Marketing the book is fun part of a project, but it can also be overwhelming too.

There are a thousand ways to seek a book now from social media to non digital ways.

Where do you start?

I’m going to start with an outreach campaign like this one. Messaging people and convincing them to buy the book because it will change their lives.

Isn’t that what every author does?

My goal is to convince you to spend $15 on the book because the stories will show you how simple changes can change how productive you are. You can be 31% more productive if you have more positive and resilient mindset.

When you are grateful you are able to bring more positivity into your relationships. This mindset enhancement will help your career. That’s when you can see the effects happen.

I wrote the book because I was struggling with the loss of my father. One of my best friends and biggest supporter.

He had his faults. His negativity could really bring me down. I wanted to make sure I didn’t become that grumpy old man that struggled to be grateful for the simple things in my life.

Here is the first story in the book:

I walked into my father’s room in the ICU.

My father was hooked up to monitors and IVs.

He looked bloated, tired, and depressed. It was shocking to see the man who had always been so tough and strong looking so weak.

This man used to smash wasps with his bare hands. Wasp stings never phased him. I thought he was the strongest father ever.

Crazy and strong.

It was my first chance to visit since he went into the hospital. I flew home because my mom wasn’t sure how much longer he would live. He had been trapped by the IVs and monitors for four weeks while the doctors tried to figure out what was attacking his body, already weakened by MDS (a form of cancer).

The doctors seemed confident they would be able to help him.

As we were leaving his room to go for a walk, I asked him what he wanted us to buy for him.

He said an orange.

It caught me by surprise. When I was growing up, he drank lots of coffee and beer. He loved a good burger. I would never have guessed he would choose such a simple gift.

As my brother and I waited for the elevator, I joked with him that Dad should have asked for a Lamborghini. He gave me a weak smile. Neither of us was in a good mood.

When we came back from our walk, I handed my father the orange. He was exhausted from a raging fever, little sleep, and constant interruptions by the doctors and nurses. Yet he still managed to smile from ear to ear when he saw the orange in my hand. Tears welled up in my eyes, and I cried.

The simple joy of receiving an orange made him feel so happy. I’m sure it was because of how trapped he had been feeling. He hadn’t eaten an orange in weeks.

Simple joys in daily life matter more than the big things because they occur so much more often.

We don’t need big wins in life to feel happy. Small daily wins keep our mindsets strong and make it easier to appreciate the big wins.

I realized I needed to open up my gratitude to the small things.

Bust the gratitude door wide open.

This was the hardest story for me to write. The rest of the stories flowed much easier.

I learned so much from this intense focus on gratitude. I want to share this with you.

My main goal is to help you bring more gratitude into your life so you can be more resilient and 31% more productive.

If you are one of the first 5 people to buy the book and review it on Amazon I will give you a free Bring Gratitude strategy session to help you bring back the energy into your career and get that promotion that you deserve.

I charge $300 per session, so if I was you I’d jump at his opportunity. 🙂

You’ll also get a personal thank you video from me so I can show you my appreciation.

All I ask is that you send me your purchase number so I can verify your purchase. You can do that on this Bring Gratitude page (Link to the book on Amazon is there too). Please be honest in your review. I want to learn and use this book to improve my next one.

I’ve also created a private Facebook page for anyone who buys the book, so you can be on the ground floor of this movement. I want all of us to lift each other to new heights at work and at home.

Gratitude Matters

Showing people that you appreciate them is one of the greatest communication tools that we have in the workplace. It’s one that is possibly most underutilized tools to improve productivity at work.

As leaders we think because people are getting paid to do the work and that thanking them and complimenting them on their hard work shouldn’t be a big deal, but it is.

Here is a story from my new book called Bring Gratitude:

“I’m so lucky to have Mark on my team,” my coworker Amy told me. “His attention to detail is off the charts.”

I also like Mark. He’s a good guy.

Amy’s compliment made me feel good for Mark.

Surprisingly, Amy’s compliment also made me feel good about Amy. When she shared her gratitude for Mark, I appreciated her a bit more. I wanted to help her more than I already was, so she would be grateful for me too.

After our conversation, I did a little research. I wanted to know why Amy’s compliment made me feel good about her.

I found out that when someone gives a genuine compliment to a teammate, like Amy did, then we tend to respect the person who gave it. This is a great way to show gratitude because it creates a win-win, benefiting everyone involved.

Who knew that bringing gratitude to work could help your career?

After writing this story it really sank in.

There is something powerful about writing down how you want to act in life. In this case I wanted to do a better job of thanking people. Not taking people for granted like I feel like my father had done when he was alive.

That’s why I started keeping a Gratitude Journal a few years ago. It’s one of my top 5 tools that I used to become more productive. You can get the 5 tools to 31% More Productivity over at Bring Gratitude.

I wanted to encourage myself to be more grateful and I became more productive in the process. It was the spark that I believe planted the seed for my new book Bring Gratitude. It was the spark that I believe planted the seed for my new book Bring Gratitude. My new book will be available on Amazon in less than a week.

How to Take Back Control of Your Career

Man Stretching Arms at Work

“But nothing will change,” he told the group.

The hair on the back of my neck stood up.

How could he think that?

It’s like he’s throwing in the white flag and wants to be miserable until he leaves his job.

I didn’t understand.

How could anyone feel so powerless?

Then I thought back to my own career and I felt the same way. It’s why I started Work Happy Now. I wanted to take back my career. I wanted control.

How soon I forget.

The problem is control is all perception. If we feel like we have no control then there is no point in trying. We can just give up and try to stop caring, but the reality is that this is just an excuse. An excuse to coast.

I then went on a rant to the group.

No one should ever feel powerless. Ever!

When you do you stop trying to make things better for yourself and other people, you stop growing. It’s this growth that helps you see progress professionally and personally.

If you are feeling powerless at work then try these ideas.

Believe change is possible

You can’t go into work believing nothing will change if you do then you’ll experience stress like never before. If you can accept that then you are also accepting that you are shortening your life expectancy as well. Then by all means stop reading this article and give up all hope.

I’m writing this article for people who refuse to give up because they believe they can help affect change at work and in their own lives.

The most important aspect of believing that change is possible is that you’ll understand the only thing to do is take action. There is a study in 2002 with 3,000 people that gives insight into this feeling. It showed that people who felt like they were in control of their careers had lower levels of stress, work-family conflict, and job turnover. They also showed that when we stop believing our actions matter we stop taking action.

You need to take action to make improvements at work. Even if that action is to bring in cookies for everyone on your team to show them that you appreciate them. The idea is to start small and build up your confidence. Once you get your mindset back on track that’s when you can take big action to make a big improvements in your career.

Let’s look at some ways you can take back control of your career.

1. Give people a lift

The best way to stop feeling helpless is to help someone else because if you are feeling helpless so are they. This works on several levels.

When you lift someone else’s spirits you are not only making yourself happier you are also making the person you help happier, which also has a ripple effect. This will ripple out into the people they come in contact with.

You can do something as simple as bringing a coworker a chocolate bar or writing then a thank you note. It doesn’t take some elaborate gift to make them happy. Usually showing recognition for someone’s hard work is the most appreciated thing you can do for someone at work.

When you lift other people’s mood you lift your own and help bring back energy to start growing your career again.

2. Take smart breaks

I made a lot of mistakes in my past by ignoring my stress level indicators. I kept powering through, making my muscles more tense.

I went to the doctor because I was having dizzy spells. It was due to increased muscle tension in my neck. Popping Advil wasn’t my best option, so I started by taking more time to monitor the tension in my body.

When I ask people in a Work Happy Now workshop to take a deep breath in they usually breath into their chest.

Chest breathing activates your fight or flight response. Belly breathing is when you are in a relaxed state.

Its when I did a lot of internal complaining that I felt drained at the end of the day. By taking a smart break you’ll be more aware of how you are feeling and how to adjust so you are more relaxed and making better decisions. It all starts with your breath then the next step is bringing more gratitude into your life at work.

When I brought gratitude to a situation I began to bring a more of a positive and resilient attitude to work. It’s this attitude that has helped me feel more relaxed even during a stressful meeting.

At the end of a day try listing 3 things that you are grateful for in a journal.

Here is a sample from last year:

  • I’m lucky to work with so many great people. There are a few wankers, but most are caring and supportive.
  • I’m grateful that I had a nice lunch with my coworkers.
  • I like that my new project is forcing me to improve my research skills.

Give it a try and see how much it helps boost your mood.

3. Rely on your network at work

When you are feeling like your career is falling apart you can go off and hide or you can lean on your fellow coworkers.

The people in the financial industry who leaned on each other after the market crash were able to weather the storm while people who hid from their peers struggled with depression and getting back on track.

You have a network at work that can help you when you are struggling. Utilize their help as much as you can and you’ll be surprised by how much it reduces your stress and helps you get your career back on track.

After stressful meetings are over or whatever stressful event I was in at work I try to talk it through with a coworker.

This simple act of talking about a shared experience helps process the event.

Too many people retreat after a stressful event. They want to hide and try to process everything. When they do this the negative emotions usually take over and this can cause more harm to you than good.

So next time you feel overwhelmed try talking it through with a coworker. Remember to focus on being grateful and not feeding each other negative feelings, bringing both of you down. Using the time to learn from the challenging experience and grow from it will help both of you.

It can be as simple as asking a co-worker to lunch or setting up a short meeting to discuss possible solutions. Whatever you do just remember that they have had similar feelings and can help you feel supported.

It’s these relationships that you build now that can also help you find a new career when you are ready to make the leap.

4. Build your skills

You have an opportunity to get paid to learn. That’s an very important aspect of a career. It’s one I forget to utilize on a regular basis.

I forget because it can feel uncomfortable. I hate to fail at things and it’s held me back from growing. It’s challenging to learn new skills and apply them at work.

A lot of people don’t like change. If you can be more accepting of it and take on new challenges it will help build your resume and make you more valuable at work.

I’ve been able to improve my writing because of this blog. It forced me to focus on writing with clarity and earn people’s attention. Without this skill my career wouldn’t be half as successful without this daily practice.

You can build skills like this at work or in your own. I suggest using both to help you expand out your skill set.

Expanding your skills will help whether you quit or get fired from a job. You’ll be more valuable at work and you’ll be adding skills to make resume stand out.

5. Quit your job

This last option is one I would not suggest unless you have a back up plan. A new job lined up or starting your own business. I was let go at my job in 2011. I had built up a lot of presentation skills at work and website optimization on my own, so I decided to start my own business. A recruiter found me on LinkedIn and this now have a contract with a large fortune 500 company to help them with their user experience on their website and app.

I give Work Happy Now workshops around the country and I consult with companies on their websites. It’s been a very interesting career that I enjoy every single day.

I was preparing myself for my next career adventure, so when I was let go I was already off and running.

You can do the same right now, so when you are ready for your next career move you have skills that make you valuable to other businesses.

Sometimes just the idea of quitting and looking for another job can help give you a more positive perspective. When you see what other jobs are out there you might realize that your job isn’t so bad. You might find pieces of joy in your present job that weren’t there until you thought about leaving.

It’s important to know what options you have to find a better career. The truth is you might be bored and need a new challenge. You just need to be prepared.

An often overlooked positive of leaving your career if you left your job is that it could open the door to bring someone in that would be more fulfilled by your role at work. It’s a win for you because you can find more challenging work and a win for your company because they find someone who is excited by the challenge.

Win-win-win.

That’s the beauty of leaving your job when you are ready. You grow your career and open a spot for someone to come in and infuse some fresh energy into the company.

Your Turn

These are just a few ideas to take back control of your career. I love hearing about other ways that you’ve grown your career.

How have you turned around your career when you were struggling with it?

Team Building Game – Guess How Many Jelly Beans

jelly beans team building

I worked for a company that never had any team building events. When 5pm struck, everyone went home. It was the culture. No fun and no games.

I worked for another company and they loved team building events. We would go to TopGolf, which is a place that has gamified practicing your drives. We went bowling. We would go out to eat once a quarter as a team. It was great. The culture was much more close knit and people would stay later to finish up their work.

It was an interesting dichotomy between both places.

I would suggest building in team building into your culture if you want to encourage people to get to know each other, build trust, be happier at work, and go the extra mile. If you go the extra mile as a company your employees will go the extra mile for you.

Jelly Beans Team Building Game

Start by gathering everyone in the room. Unveil the game and the rules.

Each employee gets to guess how many jelly beans are in the jar. This is just like any other Jelly Bean game, but it’s what you do after that builds a stronger team culture.

Here is what you can do to tie everything back into not only having more fun, but encouraging people to talk with each other. Hopefully improving communication within the company.

So, the first guess is paid by the company. It costs $1 to guess.

Every guess after the first guess the employee should pay out of his/her own pocket. Create a simple shared spreadsheet that will allow the team leader to document each guess. If you want to make sure there is no cheating, you can have team leader put number of jelly beans in envelope, seal it and only open it after the deadline for guesses has passed.

The prize can be a $50 giftcard to a local restaurant of their choice.

There will also be a charity tied to the game. The team will pick 3 approved charities and the winner of the jelly beans guessing game will pick one of the approved charities.

The prize and the charity donation is the incentive for employee to participate. The charity donation is to create goodwill around the team.

You can run this game for a month. I would send out a message once a week and a link to the spreadsheet with everyone guesses. This will get people looking at who is guessing what and start to bid around other people’s guesses. The idea is to get as many people involved as you can so it becomes a talking point around the office.

The final step is to have a celebration around the game. Gather everyone in a room and announce the winner. This step is key because you want to encourage people to talk and share the experience. It’s this part of the game that will do the most good to building a stronger team culture.

Virtual Version (Companies where the employees work from home)

Set-up a jelly been jar and take a picture of it and send to everyone. Run the contest very much the same. You can create a PayPal account or another online account to collect money from each person. You can also collect money before you announce winner. The main difference is everyone will gather on an online video conference call to announce the winner and have the winner pick the charity.

Modifications

If you would prefer not to collect money, especially if you are a virtual team, you can create jelly bean jar and keep track of guesses. Limit one guess per day per employee. Then the winning employee gets a free lunch.

Review Questions:

  1. How did people respond to the game? (Did they like the game? Did they participate?)
  2. What could be improved about the game when you run it again?
  3. Do you think it helped the team build stronger relationships?
  4. What were the benefits that you noticed to running this game?

If you want a leg up on your competition then here is a cool article for guessing how many jelly beans on are in jar.

Going Deeper into Your Work

I sat in the crowded room.

So many smart people all trying to improve the company’s website.

I chuckled.

I felt lucky to be here.

Tom stood up and said, “We are looking at the problem all wrong. We’re too focused on our perspective. We need to look at it from the customer’s perspective.”

He was right. We were so worried about gaining new members we forgot to make sure our current customers were happy.

I’ve been working with a big client over the past year. It’s taking up a lot of my time.

I miss my smaller clients, but there is a lot of positive when working with a big client.

When you work with a lot of smart people you get to learn directly from them. You see how their mind works and how they see things that you don’t.

You probably get to work with some talented people as well. The more you learn from them the more it helps your career.

It’s taking his time to go a little deeper into studying the people around you that will really help you grow. Let’s look at a few ways you can improve your career by just watching the habits of the talented people around you.

1. How do they prepare?

When you work with talented and caring people you’ll notice a common theme. They all prepare well, so they can can kick butt at work.

Next time they have a big presentation watch what they do.

  1. How do they research their presentation?
  2. Who do they talk to get feedback?
  3. What rituals do they do to get in the right mindset?

The last one is very important because it helps sets the tone for the presentation. Before a big presentation they might have a routine where they make a cup of tea, wear a certain shirt, play a certain song, or read a energizing article and allow them to feel confident. It’s routine that helps them get in the zone.

You’ll start to notice a common theme when dealing with smart, talented and caring people. They understand what they want to accomplish and they make sure they are prepared to do their best. Even when they fall short they are still proud of their work because they gave it their all.

2. What do they care the most about?

Understanding what makes people tick is key to learning from them. I like ask people straight out why they care about their jobs.

I ask…

What’s the favorite part of your job?

If they talk with passion and/or go into great detail then I can see that they truly care about their work. This fascinates me because I haven’t always been this way. The older I get the more I realize that they work at this. No one loves everything about their job, but he ones that grow their career focus on the stuff that they care about.

The question usually reveals a lot about the person. I had a boss who loved Design. He loved reading user experience articles and sharing them with us. It dictated how he went about his job every single day. He lived and breathed his work.

People also show you how they care through their actions. If they go the extra mile they love the work. If they are a good coach they love helping others. If they ask you if they can help then they care about you.

You can learn so much by watching people and how they converse with others. I started complimenting people more because I had a coworker who did it so well. He would compliment your work and explain why he appreciated your effort. It made me feel good about myself and want to help him even more. That’s they type of person I wanted to be at work.

3. What makes them special?

Some people just have certain gifts that they rely on, but what makes most people special is how willing they are to go deep into their work.

They push through when most people give up. It’s this tenacity/focus that helps them succeed.

Next time a coworker hits a stumbling block see how they react. Do they go a little deeper and try a little harder?

I had a boss that took notes at every meeting. He didn’t want to miss a thing. I’m still working on this habit, but his habit sticks with me. I always have a notepad or my phone, so I can jot down notes so I will remember to follow up or remember to take action after the meeting is over.

Your Turn

What is one thing you see someone else do that you can incorporate into your skill set?

Look around at the people that you work with try talking to the people that you see bring special talents to the table. Find out why they enjoy their work. Ask them if they have any routines.

You have an opportunity to go deeper into your work, improving your career, just by getting advice from the people you work with.

If you don’t have anyone that you admire then go outside of your company. LinkedIn is perfect for this. Connect with someone and see if they will answer a few questions.

Remember people are busy so don’t take it personal if they don’t respond back right away if at all. It’s important that you don’t give up. If you want to take your skills to a new level then you are going to learn from other talented people. Keep reaching out to other people until someone responds back.

Books and podcasts are always a great resource, but if you can learn a skill from someone you admire at work then that’s one of the best ways to build a relationship and grow your skills

10 Warning Signs You’re in The Wrong Job

Warning sign

I started off just like most of the people that surround my environment. Good family and friends, always had what I strictly needed, and life seemed perfect, up until some point. There were the college and the university, and finally the long-awaited job. I always loved working with people, so I went on with this path.

After I finished university, it was not long till I managed to land a good job as a personnel assistant in a smaller corporate organization. As the months went by, I continuously felt a certain push. It wasn’t a physical one. It was just like something was burning inside me, and my subconscious was constantly trying to fight me.

To be honest, even though I could say that I love what I do, the place in which I worked and the job duties that were put into my responsible hands were too boring. For me, boredom leads to procrastination, anxiety, and depression.
So I took a moment by myself and closely examined my deepest feelings. I still have that paper, and I’m going to let you see it:

  • I feel anxious because I feel like I’m wasting my energy and youth doing a futile job
  • I feel angry because my boss doesn’t understand my point of view that might just revolutionize the company
  • I feel extremely bored with the duties they give me
  • I feel stupid because I am still working here

And after the last sentence, I remember how it suddenly stroked me. I said no more, I’m going to quit. Of course, the next morning I was back to my “comfy” job that was putting food on my table.

The breakthrough was when I figured out that I had to work double to get myself out of the position that I’ve solely put myself in. I figured out that the best way to get off this “job trap” is to start looking for another company to work for. Then, I could continue on by starting a company, and the path will lead me.

So for several months I stayed at home after work, looked out for open vacancies, learned new skills, and tested new things. Once I got a job offer from a well-known company, I quit my job and that’s it. Simple. That’s the end of my sorrow.

Now I’m living a happily ever after story, even though I’m not rich or overly successful. I’m living the dream because I do what I enjoy, and no one will ever make me do something that I don’t like doing.

Not that you should follow my lead or become as me, but you can learn from my mistakes. During today’s article, we’ll talk about 10 warning signs that prove that you’re in the wrong job. If you happen to figure out that you’re clearly in a wrong job situation, there’s no need to despair.

John Newman is a very fulfilled HR Generalist at Careers Booster, and also a friend of mine. I asked him for a simple advice that I could give to all the people that hate their jobs and start to become aware and panic. Here’s his message:

Lots of people are in your situation. What you can do now is slowly make your way out towards something better. Life’s not about material things – if you spend it not doing what you enjoy, you’ll definitely have regrets later on when you’re no longer able to do what you could do…now.

Now according to both John’s and my personal experience, here are the 10 warning signs that might suggest that you’re in the wrong job:

1. You’re Feeling Bored

As in my case, feeling bored is a true sign that you’re not doing what you’re supposed to do. The feeling of boredom comes whenever we’re not interested in the topics presented to us. The duties might be boring, so our efficiency will never shine.

2. Nothing’s Natural to You

If all of your tasks are putting you into a weird stance and position, you might just have a problem. Whenever you’re good at something, and you enjoy doing that thing, you’ll be able to perform naturally. Your creative mind makes it very easy for you to come up with solutions.

Moreover, your strengths should always advantage you in your job. If on the contrary, you’re feeling that nothing seems natural with your job, you’re in the wrong place!

3. You Don’t Fit In

After you spend several weeks or months at a workplace, you should already figure out whether you fit with the company’s culture and members. In case your colleagues are not really your type, you’ll probably never forge strong connections with them. This is a major issue, so I’d consider a change.

4. No Desire to Do More

If nothing motivates you to do more than required, you’re most likely to have a problem. You see, a productive and engaged employee is always looking for opportunities to do better. Your lack of interest in over delivering value might be a clear sign that you’re not supposed to work where you work now.

5. You’re There for The Money

If money’s the only thing that motivates you, then you haven’t picked your job pretty well. As John has suggested, life’s not about materialistic stuff. You can reach happiness by pursuing all sorts of different things, all while you’re doing something enjoyable during your work hours.

6. You Receive Bad Feedback on a Consistent Basis

Bad feedback isn’t necessarily bad. But if you’re receiving it on a constant basis, it means that you’re doing something wrong. Perceive bad feedback not as small remarks that are constantly being thrown at you by your mean boss, but the see the important clues that let you know whether you’re doing things right or wrong.

In case you’re doing it wrong all the time, why’d you keep staying there?

7. You’re Feeling Embarrassed that You Work There

In case you’re feeling any sort of embarrassment because of your job, you’re definitely in the wrong spot my friend. Solve the problem or quit immediately. Living with embarrassment is the worst, especially when the feeling sparks whenever you have to speak out your job position.

8. You’re Not Growing as a Professional

Life’s all about learning new thing and growing our physical and mental abilities. Nevertheless, many jobs are actually limiting the people that perform them. If you feel that your opportunities are slim and your growing rhythm has slowed down, start assessing your situation.

Found out that it’s clearly slowing your professional growth? Well, it’s not the right job!

9. You Just Can’t Be You

If you can’t be you, why even bother? Spend 8 hours pretending that you’re someone else? That sounds insane. Yet, many people do it, and they do it because they’re afraid of change. No one’s going to get you out of these types of situations other than yourself.

10. You’re Only Living on the Weekends

In case you’re waiting for Friday like kids wait for Santa each year, this is a very strong sign that you’re unfulfilled with your job. There are many individuals that only enjoy two and a half days of their lives per week because whenever they have to work, life’s not that pink for them. Apathy, boredom, and sadness…these are all feelings that are screaming for a change!
Conclusion

Being in the wrong job is a serious problem. Work represents half of our lives, so I’d suggest paying a lot of attention when choosing it. If you’re recognizing a few or more of these 10 “symptoms” in your present life, you definitely need to change your job. It takes courage, will, commitment, and action.

Once you manage to replace your job with something more fulfilling, life will no longer be miserable, and you’ll be able to enjoy way more aspects of your life. But remember…this will only happen…once you make the change.

Eva Wislow is a career coach at Resumes Planet and HR expert from Pittsburgh. She is focusing on helping people break down their limits, find a dream job and achieve career success. Eva finds her inspiration in writing. Follow her on Twitter.

How to Create an Amazing Work Culture

Job Interview

As a millennial working in a small marketing company, I realized that motivated employees are more productive and value their jobs. Personally, there are moments when I feel going to work a burden. But as a manager, I know my importance in this and how it can affect the workflow of a business. It’s not just about the motivation. Its about how we treat other human beings.

Happiness vs. employee performance

I enjoy running my personal blog more than being stuck in the office from 8-5. The thought of the usual routine and a job description that does not resonate with my set of skills makes me feel like quitting sometimes.

Employers tend to underestimate the fact that employees’ happiness contributes to their overall performance at work. I agree that it’s hard to make somebody happy because happiness comes from within, but painful stressors at work reduce happiness levels and affect employees’ productivity.

What to do to improve employee morale

If there are high levels of absenteeism among your staff or a high rate of turnover, then it is time you reevaluate the confidence levels of your employees. Employees with high morale will be more productive in their work.

Make it a habit praising them for a job well done. When employees achieve their targets, acknowledge it. Recognition plays a significant role in boosting employee morale. Studies show that celebrating success breeds more success. Productivity increases when you recognize your employees’ success.

How to make employees more productive

I realized that to be more productive, employees need to be optimistic and focused. For an employee to be optimistic, he has to be interested and love his job. An employee cannot love his job if he is frustrated. A high-stress level at work makes employees hate their jobs. They became less motivated, and they will ask for sick offs more often.

When the brain is optimistic, it fuels performance. Sales are likely to increase by 37%, productive energy by 31% and chances of promotions will increase by 40% if the employees are focused and optimistic. You can read the research at Harvard Business Review.

These are some of the measures you have to put in place to make your employees more happy and productive.

Be good to your employees

When you are good to your employees, you will value them. You will not see them as a means to an end but as a part you and you will endeavour to make their lives easier as they work for you.

Create realistic expectations. Provide sound leadership and ensure that you have the welfare of your employees at heart. Give them breaks. Offer breakfast to workers who work on shifts and allow them to take long breaks during lunch hours. You will realize that employees who don’t feel pressured work best and are more motivated.

Let your employees feel valued

Nothing makes somebody happy than knowing that someone else values them. Imagine what more it would do to your staff? Praise them when they perform above par. This, however, does not mean you ignore mistakes

If an employee does something wrong, instead of punishing them, talk to them calmly. Make them understand why they need to do it right. If you don’t see any changes after several corrections, then it is time to reevaluate if the employee is a perfect fit for that particular job. Valuing your employees does not entail much. It may only mean smiling at them or just asking about the welfare of their families.

Create a favourable work environment for everyone

Create a culture that caters to every employee’s needs. This will lead to increased productivity. Some employees feel productive in the morning. There are those who are more productive in the afternoon. A good employer will capitalize on that and allow employees to work when they feel more productive as long as they cover the number of hours they are supposed to cover in a day.

Ensure that your staff has the right resources for carrying out their jobs. The office set up should have the right ventilations. They should not feel stuffed in the wrong office space. Some employees thrive in open office space while there are those who love privacy. Provide for these needs to make them happier.

Get everyone involved

I love it when employers use the theory of management by objective. This approach ensures that all employees are involved. In this method of management, employees are responsible for making decisions. They participate in every bit of planning. This gives them the zest and drive to succeed. Create that feel of a family touch. Value their decisions while offering some leadership.Ensure that there are policies in place on how to act on various issues. The policy should resonate with every employee.

To keep employees happy and working, ensure that you are that good employer who values your employees. Create an environment that employees will thrive in. Let them enjoy the workplace and keep them involved in every issue that happens within the organization. The above tips will make your staff productive and a lot happier in the workplace than you ever imagined and business will be good and profitable.

Matthew Snider is a writer, a personal development junkie and a regular blogger at Self Development Secrets. Matt, with his one quarter Asian descent, did not start out as a writer, but he says, “the love for a subject is the most important aspect of writing. The readers want to read something written by someone who understands them.”

Why Creating an Environment of Success Will Save Your Company Money

working at coffee shop

Working in the national parks for years, I’ve learned the real cost of employee attrition. It’s almost impossible to find another qualified candidate when you are out in the middle of the forest (even for housekeeping). Finding out what you can do for that person to make their job easier could be as easy as a sliding schedule for the start of the day. Finding a solution to your employee’s issues could help you fill a shift you assume no one wants or could be as easy as moving a desk next to a window.

What is a Successful Environment

A successful work environment is one where your employees can feel productive and engaged. You can achieve this through effective leadership, better offices, and by meeting your employee’s needs. This not only means adjusting the physical environment with things like natural lighting and adjustable workspaces (an Osha requirement), but also hitting their human needs, like coffee, being an upstanding company, paying for their continuing education, or encouraging growth internally.

working at coffee shop

Rewards To Reap

An actively engaged employee is infinitely more successful than a disengaged employee, they steal less, they are there more often and longer, and even get injured less on the job. Having an employee who pumps out great work for years without getting ill or injured in an employer’s dream, so why not fulfill your employee wants.

Ways to Transform Your Office Today

You can boost morale and create an environment of success with a small initiative today like meeting your employee’s basic needs, encouraging their growth (and your’s), and listening to them.

There are many ways to improve your employee’s moral, but an indicator of a good direction is stress reduction. This could be anything from providing snacks or even breakfast options for the earliest shift, to encouraging carpooling (a great stress reducer!). Listening to people, providing them with their basic needs (money, health insurance, growth), and doing whatever you can to reduce their stress. Stress and fear are great motivators for fast results, but brandishing your employees in the fire will only make them melt faster later.

For many people, this means a focus on the individual. This could be a diverse office with a variety of workstations to sit at, a variety of ways to communicate information to you, and access to sunlight (or natural lighting). Small steps to make people more productive add up over time, so even something small, like cubicle spaces for people who prefer privacy rather than your open office can pay off.

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Ways to Transform your Office Tomorrow

There are certain aspects of stress reduction environments that take time to accomplish. While a couch by a window, a conference room converted to a quiet space, or a carpool can be set up in a day, a small office or a health initiative might take a month or two to implement.

Health initiatives are great! These cover everything from HR meetings to walking groups or a paid gym membership (which pays off in the long-run). Encouraging your employees to get up every two hours for a ten-minute walk or even allowing for longer lunch breaks could help them get more done when at their desk.

Really cracking down is not a good method of getting things done. Success breeds success, and that includes personal success. You may even consider redesigning your office. Even though cubicle farms feel impersonal, open air offices can be even more dangerous to productivity levels. Consider remodelling around your workflow, it can be similar to remodelling a kitchen – workflow and budget are important.

A converted “quiet” room provides an escape from a busy open floor plan, that hinders productivity. You can also ‘hack’ your open floor plan with nooks, half-walls, and by splitting the floor into distinct individual pods that give the impression of separation. Just like above, making your office work for the majority of individuals is the way to get the best work from your employees. This could mean allowing some employees to “find the zen of fuzzy slippers” or working vampire hours.

Because a checked-in, productive individual who feels like they can accomplish things is the number one way to create an environment of success. If that means a bean-bag corner where your dev. team can hold their meetings, or allowing everyone to clock out and take a two-hour lunch to combat afternoon fatigue, then that’s what you should do. Every environment of success is different because every company culture harbors different types of workers.

What to Take From This Article:

Everyone is a little different. Some people get everything done in the morning. Other people don’t do anything until three in the afternoon. And allowing your employees to work around those constraints, will give you happier, more productive employees. There isn’t one environment of success, there are many. The real environment of success is the one that lets employees find what works for them.

How to Deal With a Difficult Coworker

How_to_deal_with_a_difficult_coworker

No matter how hard you try — or how much of a people person you are — there is one coworker with whom you simply don’t gel. As the word “coworker” implies, you work with this person, so it’s hard to avoid him or her in meetings, on e-mail chains or even at the water cooler. Unfortunately, you can’t spend your entire workday planning how to avoid this person, either.

So, what’re you to do? Dealing with a difficult coworker takes patience and finesse, but we’ve made all of that a bit easier with the following five tips. If you need an added incentive, friendly office relations are one of the easiest ways to make yourself happier at work, too.

In other words, it’s time to get to work — at least, on smoothing things over with your least favorite colleague.

Figure out Your Move First

No matter how nice and amenable you are, your coworker has done something to ruffle your feathers. It might be tempting to lay all of your feelings out right away in order to get them off your chest, but workplace wisdom says to slow down.

Give yourself a few hours or days to compose yourself and gather your thoughts on the situation that has caused you so much stress. Observe your coworker with others and try to figure out who this person is — and why. What is it about the two of you that isn’t working? With a bit of perspective, you might be able to better understand him or her.

Do Something, Though

So much workplace angst devolves into passive aggression, which is hardly ever a solution to your problem. You’re going to have to take some sort of action in order to deal with your problem, though there’s never a one-size-fits-all solution.

Consider both personalities involved, and you’ll have a better idea of how your problem will reach a solution. You might want to involve a boss or another coworker to mediate a discussion, or perhaps you could suggest a coffee session in which you both try to smooth things over. No matter what you choose, make sure you actually do it. The post-conversation relief and positive relations will be worth the pre-conversation stress.

difficult_coworker_coffee

Look for the Positives

It might be hard to see past your office enemy’s, well, enemy exterior. But, dig deep: Is there anything you can appreciate about him or her? Perhaps she does work hard, or he can put together a killer PowerPoint presentation. You can even look for the positives while you discuss your problems, as prescribed above. A good and true point could help you see your coworker’s side, thus improving relations between you.

This is also a good tactic if the mediation techniques above don’t work or if it’s too soon in the game to sit down and talk about your issues with someone. See the good and — try to, at least — forget the bad. Maybe a great sales record will speak louder than your colleague chews in the break room.

Keep It to Yourself

You probably have other friends at work, and it has to be so tempting to fill them in on all of the reasons why someone is your least favorite colleague. There are good and bad things about venting — permanent damage to relationships falls into the latter category.

In the heat of the moment, you might not care whether or not you remain cordial with your colleague, so you could feel inclined to vent away. Beware that your words can get back to the person about whom you’re talking, and everyone in the conversation — including your work friends who are listening to your story second-hand — could be looped into the drama and discomfort.

Make a Move

Finally, if you’ve made the above efforts and more and still can’t get along with your coworker, it might be time to do something a bit more permanent. Talk to your boss about opportunities within other departments or even in other branches. You might even be able to scoop up a job within your same department without as much communication or contact with the person causing you so much grief.

You spend at least 40 hours a week at work — it’s time to make it a more pleasant experience. By rising above it all, talking it out and hopefully smoothing things over with your coworker, you’ll feel that much better about being at the office. Now, to work on speeding up the clock to make Friday come faster…

About the Author

Sarah Landrum is the founder of Punched Clocks, a site dedicated to helping others find happiness and success in their careers. Follow her for more inspiring tips at @SarahLandrum