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  • Defusing Workplace Conflict With Humor

    In Canadian funnyman Martin Short’s biography, I Must Say, Short describes how his wife would ask to speak to his alter ego character Ed Grimley as a way to defuse the tension when they argued. Ed’s sweet goofiness and honesty almost always helped lower the temperature during a heated discussion.

    A little disruptive humor has been shown to lower the stress levels even in very serious situations. During the Cuban missile crisis, President John F. Kennedy often insisted that meeting participants start meetings or take a break during tense meetings to tell a joke as a way of lowering everyone’s stress.

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  • 5 Common Sources of Stress & What to Do About Them – Guest Blog

    Most people have an idea of what’s stressing them out, but others can’t quite put their finger on the specifics. They just know that they operate under a certain degree of stress and anxiety much of the time. To kick our stress triggers to the curb once and for all, we must identify the situations, people and issues causing us the most grief. Take a look at the following five common sources of stress, take heart that you are not alone—and then take action:

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  • Striking Gold Creatively is All About Perseverance

    What do Babe Ruth, Reggie Jackson, Sammy Sosa and Mickey Mantle have in common? As you likely guessed, they were all horrible baseball players. Yup – some of the most inept batters you’ll find in baseball history. Complete and utter losers, really. At least that’s the impression one might get when you see their names included among the batters with the most strikeouts. (Reggie Jackson holds the dubious honor as the #1 strikeout batter in history, having struck out 2,597 times at bat.) Of course, you know the punch line. They were also some of the top hitters to grace the game.  

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  • Huddle Up! Daily Team Huddles Improve Communication, Culture

    One of the most effective and efficient things any team can do to improve their communication is to commit to daily huddles. Yes, daily. I’m not talking about formal meetings in the BORED-room, but quick, standing huddles that allow everyone to check in.

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  • Turning Customers Into Fun Ambassadors for Your Products

    The Fly By Night Club in Anchorage, Alaska features a nightly show called the Whale Fat Follies. As a way to interact with their audiences in an offbeat way, the leader of the follies asks the audience to take photos of themselves with a can of Spam (Alaska is the second highest per capita consumer of Spam in the U.S.) …

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  • Work Environments That Yield High Employee Satisfaction (Guest Blog)

    A 2014 study by the University of Warwick economics department found that happy workers were 12 percent more productive than employees who disliked their jobs. The study, published in the Journal of Labor Economics, is reportedly the first of its kind to find direct causal evidence linking happiness and higher productivity at work.

    It behooves all business owners to invest in employees satisfaction to maximize profits. But the commitment to making workers happy doesn’t necessarily have to cost money. Several companies have written the blueprints for worker satisfaction, high productivity and profits over the years.

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  • Speaking Up! Encouraging More Open, Honest Communication in Your Workplace

    A series of Harvard Business Review articles looked at the phenomenon of “organizational silence”: Employees withholding information that could be of value to the organization. The researchers found that managers often under appreciate the tremendous cost of organizational silence. Many managers wrongly assume that if employees are talking to them then they must not be holding back on anything. But the researchers found that 42% of employees who spoke up about problems or offered ideas also withheld important information, for two primary reasons: they felt it was a waste of time or they feared the personal consequences. So what can a workplace do to encourage more open and honest communication? A few thoughts…

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  • Unique & Appropriate Baby Gifts for Workplace Showers (Guest Blog)

    Throwing a baby shower for a fellow employee is a wonderful way to show your appreciation and celebrate the impending arrival of their baby. Great gifts are a cornerstone of a good baby shower celebration. They offer a message of excitement, embracing the positive new changes that are about to come. If your coworker is celebrating the upcoming arrival of a new baby, consider the following employee-to-employee gifts for mom and baby:

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  • The Power of Happy Hour: Going From Work to Play (Guest Blog)

    Closed deals and increasing sales may drive revenue, but a harmonious company culture is essential for business prosperity. Great company culture can be built outside the conference rooms and office walls; actually, it can be built at the bar. Five o’clock happy hour is more than just an excuse for co-workers to booze it up and munch on appetizers. This post-work company function (and ahem, networking event) helps cultivate an engaged, compatible team. A happy hour connects employees and leaders on a different level, some of whom don’t typically interact on a 9-to-5 basis. Reply “yes” to the happy hour invitation and approach the work-social scene as an opportunity to connect with your co-workers, be seen as a team player and most importantly, have a good time.

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  • Why Do You Work? What’s Your Compelling Workplace Mission?

    The book, Mavericks at Work, by William C. Taylor and Polly LaBarre, shows how a compelling sense of purpose in your work is critical if you want to stay energized.

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