Wednesday, January 12, 2011

It's your turn

Just about every Wednesday for nearly a year now, you've seen some kind of work etiquette or advice post.  While I still have quite the list of topics on deck for future Wednesdays, I wanted to take today to open it up to suggested work etiquette and professional topics.  Sure, I can pull topics out of my purse all day (where else did you think they came from?), but I'd rather address topics you care about, too.

So whether you're an office veteran or fresh out of school, I want to know--what questions do you have about work etiquette, professional development, dress codes, and career growth?

I'm open to anything, no matter how simple or complex.  Leave your questions in the comments below or email me, and I will get to work answering (or finding guest bloggers to answer) your burning questions.


  1. I'd like an opinion on an etiquette question (thanks for asking for topics) -
    If I'm talking to a client about a management issue they face which I'm helping to address (i.e. managing priorities), and they identify that there is a service they need (i.e. some graphic work), and my company provides that service, how do I tell them without sounding overly self serving / self promoting?

  2. How about a post on how to transition work friends into life friends? What are the advantages/disadvantages? What would the rules be for this type of friendship, etc.

  3. Oh yes, what Jo said! And also, how to NOT be life friends with co-workers without coming of as no fun...esp. if you are a supervisor!

    Also, my least favorite part of my job is having to tell people they are in violation of the dress code...I had a staff member say her shorts were capris when I told her she couldn't wear the. (they were above the knee!) It is especially tough when the outfit is professional but still in violation (short suits). Also, I have had to have difficult conversations about cleavage, perfume use, flip flops...Hard to find the right tone on those, because it is so touchy! The flip side of this is how to show you individuality within the dress code...We can wear company t-shirts with jeans on Fridays, but I never do, because I feel sloppy and unstyled!

  4. Carol, Jo, and Martha - Thanks for your feedback! These are great questions. Look for some posts on these topics in the near future! (and keep the questions coming!)

  5. I have some of the same questions/issues as Martha, but more geared to how to kindly address attitude issue with wayward staff without creating a worse situation (attitude-wise). I have a staff member whose been with me for 5 mons and has the attitude that she is on the same level as I (I'm the director, she's a coordinator) and is actually telling me no, she won't complete assigned projects when she's told to. I dislike the disciplinary side of management because I know I can come off as harsh, so how do I soften the blow? She's very young with very, very little professional experience and needs some guidance, but is not open to that guidance!

    Other question is how NOT to let it bother you when people you used to be friends with at work are no longer your friends because you are in a supervisory position over them. I was a regular employee for 2 years and now a manager for 2 years and as I've had to correct issues with staff and become accountable to the C-level for the staff, I've lost that camaraderie. I know it is only natural, but how do you not let it bother you???

  6. @ rachel - Great questions! I'm new to management as well, but I don't have any direct reports. Will do my best to get some answers for you, though!

  7. Appropriate hair-dos for the work place.... always make me wonder.

  8. @ lorena - great question! I'll see what I can come up with.


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