Friday, June 29, 2007

Fridays @ Work: 5 things you can do in under a minute to improve work

Aren't I charming to use the @ sign in my title? So 90's!

Anyhow, this will be my regular Friday column about the crux between work and weekend life. This, especially, is a weekend of all weekends for me, as I have M - W off (W is the 4th of July).

Today's topic is good works in the workplace that can be done in under one minute. Sorry if I get a little preachalicious. I feel strongly.

1. Replace the bottled water when you drink the last cup (or even, almost the last cup).

We all like a nice, clean, non-chlorinated drink of aqua from time to time. Water is The Essential Thing that we are all made of. We forget we have it easy; our forebears had to climb mountains or uncover streams to locate water nowhere near as clean as this H2O we take for granted. And I'VE SEEN YOU, YES YOU, walk away from the water because it needed a new bottle. I'VE SEEN YOU leave two tablespoons of water for the next person. Anyone under or close to 100 pounds has a special dispensation due to the weight of the water. For the chunky rest of us? Come on! Remember your mom and her insistence upon refilling of the paper products. Who likes to be caught with a spilled Coke on the floor, and no paper towelling in sight? So refill the water. Anyhow, do you really want to be running back to work? A little exercise could do us good. And water. You just channel your inner Viking! Throw that jug of water on your shoulder and heave-ho, you Water Superhero!

2. Don't wear perfume.

This topic is emotionally charged. People feel that their scent defines them as much as their clothing or their words. However, for those with chemical sensitivities, your perfume/cologne/deodorant/hand lotion/dryer sheets can cause asthma attacks, migraines, and itchiness to rival your Second Grade Chickenpox. It's not just a matter of avoiding you, it is a matter of avoiding the air you have touched. Can ya see how that might be hard? :-) So, as difficult as it may be, don't load up with AXE before going to work. Even though Opium may be your idea of heaven, it could be my idea of one hell of a headachy afternoon and itchy night.

3. When you ask "How are you?" listen for the response.

Pleasantries can be overlooked, but they really help bond us together. Our lives interact in so many visible and invisible ways. Knowing someone is having a great time at home can help free you to ask them for work favors. Knowing someone is struggling at home can help you understand when they don't refill the water cooler. Just a thought! :-)

4. Encourage your cave dwelling compadres to emerge into the light.

The natural world is our world, yet we divide ourselves from the sun, the rain, the trees. It is practical to do this, but (literally) it is unnatural. So go outside for a few minutes. Soak up some sun. Hug a tree. Gauge the breeze. Notice the phase of the moon. It's good stuff.

5. Tell people when they do a good job.

Okay, this is corny, but really tell people when they do well. If you notice yourself relying upon someone, tell that person how invaluable he/she is. We all have an inner kindergartner who likes a gold star.


digitalcowgirl said...

My former Director, aka: The Coolest Boss Ever, said to me, everyday, "Thanks for all your hard work today."

I miss her.

Rodrigo said...
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autumn said...

This is a great post! Thanks so much for reading and I'm glad you were inspired to write. That's exactly what my professor didn't do so if I can, I do totally win!

CawfeeGuy said... if i ask someone how they are and they launch into a lengthy explanation of their hysterectomy...that's ok?

Rion said...

Okay, so some office info falls into the category of TMI (too much information). Good point. However, if ladies start giving you blow-by-blows on their "girl parts" you can always attest to your squeamishness. You are probably referring to hot flashes, not hysterectomies, which women usually choose to keep quiet about.