Ah, open-plan offices. Proponents say they can encourage creativity and collaboration among staff members, while allowing workers flexibility to decide where in the office inspiration is most likely to strike. Of course, open-office boosters generally have another reason to push for them: fewer walls can mean less square footage per person, which equals lower real estate costs. As commenter Meghan C. said, "What bugs me most about open floor plans is imagining The Powers That Be sitting in their @#$% offices saying how great open floor plans are." If you're not a fan of the wall-free office, these tales of woe, collected from Facebook users, will seem pretty familiar.
It can be tough to reach the typical high mark for productivity during the summer months. Sure, you're at work – but another part of you feels distracted by thoughts of home (or maybe the beach) where you envision yourself enjoying the beautiful weather with friends and family.
Many people dream about escaping the drudgery of office life and working from home, but the truth is, remote work has its own kind of drudgery – and some serious challenges. The key to success is understanding and dealing with some of the most common distractions you'll face when working remotely. Here's how to get started.
Remember summers when you were a kid? We all had different experiences, but whether you spent your summers at camp, fishing with your parents, or lounging around a pool with buddies, chances are we all have one memory in common: free time. At least, before we got old enough for summer jobs.
The brain is arguably the most definitively valuable tool to which we have access. If our lives and careers are a ship whose charter is based on a sequence of certain decisions, the brain is the captain steering its course. But how well do we you know it? Probably not very, according to some experts – and an interesting (free) quiz.
Discretionary time for adults feels like a thing of the past. How often are most of us able to wake up and decide what to do today? Almost never. It can be difficult to set aside adequate family time, much less time for pure leisure activities, or for ourselves.
If you've ever tried to up your listening game, you know it's harder than it seems. It's not a matter of simply cultivating interest in what the speaker is saying, or suppressing the tendency to wait for your chance to talk. This week's roundup includes insight into why you can't become a better listener, just by listening harder – plus, how to improve, the right way, and an explanation of why all those productivity hacks aren't helping you to get more done.
Meetings are a mystery. Everyone claims to hate them, and yet they proliferate on our calendars like Tribbles on Star Trek. The explanations for why that happens are many and varied, including different goals for management and staff, ineffective communication techniques, and just plain old ego. (If you've ever had a boss who loved to hear himself talk, you're familiar with this issue.) Here's how to keep meetings short and get back your time.
The sweet, sunny days of early summer make you want to be outside: go to the beach, work in your garden, do anything that involves fresh air and being away from your desk. There's no month like May for tempting us to be outside as often as we can. You may even feel the urge to do usually indoorsy things outside if you can swing it – like your work. And, why not? Here are some tips for working outdoors.
Like it or not, meetings are a part of working life. Meetings are where decisions are made, projects are allocated, announcements are shared, etc. But that's what an ideal meeting looks like – there's action, and something moves forward. The reality is that not all meetings are really that productive. Some meetings are just a drain on everyone's time and actually get in the way of you performing your job.
As the toughest day of the week draws to a close, are you having trouble making progress on your to-do list? You don't need to pack up for the day with a sense of failure. In the hours you have left, these tricks can help you get enough done to start Tuesday off with a sense of accomplishment instead of dread.