• What Makes Workers Happy, Creative, and Productive in 2015?
    What makes workers happy, and why do so many of us decide to leave our jobs and start looking elsewhere for employment? There are so many factors that contribute to the overall picture of our job satisfaction, from work-life balance to potential opportunities for advancement. In an effort to understand what makes today's worker tick, Staples surveyed thousands of managers and workers across the U.S. about current workplace trends and culture. The results of that report, the Staples Advantage Workplace Index, reveal a great deal about work-life balance, productivity, and so much more. Let's take a look at the key findings.
  • PayScale's VIP Blog Roundup: When the Boss Acts Like Ebenezer Scrooge About Holiday Time
    In a perfect world, we'd all have the month of December off – or at least, the tail end of it, when the holiday season starts really heating up. Let's face it: not much is getting done during the last half of the month anyway, unless you work in healthcare or event planning. Despite the futility of working at most white-collar jobs in the waning days of the year, the majority of workers will be expected to show up and do a good imitation of someone who's working hard. We all accept that this is so. But, what about when your boss, or your employer, is stingy about actual holidays? Answers to that question, plus advice on how to stop expecting the wrong things from yourself and others, and tips on getting the best job referrals, in this week's roundup.
  • The Hidden Challenges of Working in 2015 and Beyond
    The words "workplace" and "office" don't conjure up simple imagery quite the way they used to. Some people work for startups that grow and change faster than employees can adjust. Other folks are freelancers or work from home for their companies. Still others are working full-time while also pursuing degrees, and trying to find a way to make it all work. No matter the case, the office life of today is very different than it used to be. And, no matter which work situation you find yourself in, that particular environment has its benefits and its drawbacks. Let's take a closer look at a few of the nontraditional employment situations available to today's workers. There may be more to these arrangements than meets the eye.
  • How to Maximize the First 3 Hours of the Workday to Reduce Your Stress
    Working incredibly long hours and rarely taking vacations is the new normal, but that doesn't mean that it's good for us. In fact, the pressure and stress is taking a toll on U.S. workers. Working all the time causes emotional and psychological problems, impacts our health, our personal lives, and even our memories. So what can we do to make work more manageable?
  • 4 Scientific Reasons Why Waiting Tables Is the Most Stressful Job Out There
    Most of the folks who have held a food server job during their lives will tell you that it can be a very stressful line of work. In fact, anyone who's ever worked with the general public, whether it be in a restaurant, a retail store, etc., will likely say the same. It's tough dealing with people, right? Well, yes, that's true. But, waiting tables comes with a lot of stresses that go far beyond just dealing with rude customers.
  • Seriously, Do Not Shop at Work on Cyber Monday (But Since You're Going to, Here's How)
    This Cyber Monday, give yourself the gift of continued employment, and do not spend your day shopping from your desk. Before you roll your eyes and remind us that these deals wait for no one, consider: it's pretty hard to pay for those presents if you no longer have a job. That said, since you're probably going to do at least some online shopping today anyway, here's how to balance your consumer wants with your employment needs.
  • Survey: Over One-Third of Employers Required Some to Work on Thanksgiving
    Did you work this Thanksgiving? If so, you're not alone. Bloomberg BNA's 2015 Thanksgiving Holiday Practices Survey showed that 36 percent of companies asked at least some of their workers to clock in this holiday, up from 33 percent last year.
  • Work-Life Balance Matters for Child-Free Folks, Too
    American opinions toward family and work are changing. Mothers are choosing to lean in, men are taking time off to rear their children, and some workers are choosing not to have kids at all. So why do we talk about work-life balance mostly in the context of raising a family and maintaining a career?
  • How to Get Your Ideal Holiday Schedule (or Close to It)
    There are few double-edged swords in American culture like the winter holiday season — which, it would seem, is on track to start in September within the next few years. It's a great time to see family, and an even better time to refine your "avoid political conversation" skills. The holidays are a great distraction from the weather, and a reason to hate snowstorms that keep you from getting to dinner on time. It's a great time to earn some extra cash, and the time of year that everyone wants off work. So how do you find the balance?
  • Why Mark Zuckerberg's 2-Month Paternity Leave Is Good News for Working Parents
    Recently, Mark Zuckerberg announced that he will take two months off after his wife Priscilla Chan gives birth. That shouldn't come as a shock: after all, Facebook, like many tech companies, offers a generous paid parental leave policy for both moms and dads. But in a country where paid paternity leave is rare – only 13 percent of dads who took leave after their children arrived received pay, compared to 21 percent of moms, according to the Department of Labor – and chief executives are expected to show leadership by making their companies the unequivocal center of their lives, Zuckerberg's choice to take some time off is almost radical. If it becomes a trend, especially among male CEOs, it could even have positive repercussions for the rest of us in our working lives.
  • 'How I Make It Work': 10 Working Parents Share Their Coping Strategies
    Does work-life balance even exist? Ask any working parent how they manage to hold down a job, take care of their family, and carve out time for themselves – at least enough to go to the dentist semi-regularly and maybe eat a vegetable now and then – and you're likely to get an earful. The upshot: balance is hard to achieve, hard enough to make many wonder if the whole thing is a myth.
  • Should You Work on Black Friday?
    Even if you don't work retail, your office might be open on the day after Thanksgiving (lots of places are). Ever since the creation of the holiday, it's fallen on a Thursday, and while we celebrate it as a federal holiday, the day after isn't a given paid day off. So, if you're choosing between taking an unpaid day or putting in a slow day at the salt mines while your family gathers at grandma's for leftovers, how do you decide?
  • 3 Things You Should Know About the Connection Between Money and Happiness
    We all know that money, ultimately, can't buy happiness. True contentment and fulfillment comes from family, community, health, love, purpose ... but it's also true that being broke isn't much fun either. Surely a billionaire would feel happier, on an average day, than someone who's really struggling financially. This is a fair assumption, but it's only true to a point. Let's look at some research concerning wealth and happiness to try to understand the relationship between the two a little bit better.
  • 5 Signs You're in a Toxic Work Environment
    Even if you absolutely love your job, there's always going to be something about it that you wish you could change. That's the ideal scenario; if you're lucky, you have an issue or two that you'd like to resolve, but nothing that impacts your job satisfaction as a whole. On the other hand, if your problems are beyond minor complaints – if you feel threatened, suffocated, or compromised on your principles, work ethic, or professional and personal well-being – you may be working in a toxic environment.
  • Which Employer Would You Choose Based on Perks?
    More and more companies are hopping on the employee perks bandwagon nowadays – and it's not just big-brand names that are dishing out the goods. From small start-ups to international corporations, employee perks are becoming more commonplace, probably because happy employees = healthy profits. Take a look at the companies that are offering some of the best perks around and let us know which one you'd choose as your employer.
  • 5 Ways to Tell If the Corporate Culture Is Right for You ... Before Accepting a Job Offer
    Finding the right company is just as important as finding the right job. Far too many professionals take the first job offer thrown their way out of desperation and impulse, without considering whether the company is a good fit, culturally. That's like marrying someone after the first or second date without knowing anything about that person, other than what you gathered online. A little crazy, right? Unfortunately, what ends up happening is that these eager professionals quickly grow unhappy in their jobs after discovering that it wasn't love at first sight – and this, folks, is why there are so many unhappy and disgruntled workers in America.
  • Here's Why Amazon's New Parental Leave Policy Matters
    If you've missed out on the back and forth between Amazon and The New York Times, the short version is that it has hardly been a mutual admiration society. At the end of the summer, the newspaper published a scathing report detailing how the company is "redrawing the boundaries of what is acceptable" in how far it can push its employees. Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos was quick to respond with an internal memo, saying that he did not believe the company in the article was the Amazon he knows, encouraging employees to report any instances of the behavior it described. Now it seems Amazon is taking concrete steps to correct that perception more broadly.
  • Sick of Your Job? Get Inspired by These 8 Great TED Talks
    It's dark, getting colder, and your next day off is still weeks away. If you're getting down at work, try a few minutes break with one of these inspirational TED talks. You just might find some answers without ever leaving your computer.
  • What to Do When Your New Dream Job Turns Out to Be a Nightmare
    You dreamed, you planned, you worked hard, and finally you've landed your dream job. Hooray! Except, once you actually starting doing the job, it turns out to be a bit of a nightmare. Maybe you're not as good at it as you'd hoped you'd be, or it doesn't feel like a good fit for your character or personality. Whatever the case, discovering that your dream job isn't making you happy can be a huge drag. Here are a few examples how dream jobs can go bad, and what you can do about it.
  • The Best & Worst States for Working Parents
    If you're a working parent finding it near impossible to balance your career and your life, it may have something to do with where you live. Read on to see which states are the best and the worst for working moms and dads, and where your state falls on the list.

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