The Blog / Teamwork

Questions for Feedback

Last week I talked about accepting criticism at work.  This week, I’d like to flip sides and discuss a few questions to consider when giving feedback at work. Is this feedback really necessary to improve productivity at work? It might seem reasonable to give feedback at every opportunity.  However, if you’re always dispensing advice, you [...]

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Accepting Work Criticism

No matter how good you are at self-evaluation, there comes a time when a co-worker surprises you with insight into your work habits.  Generally, this is followed by direct or indirect advice on how to improve.  Before you either accept or reject wholeheartedly any such advice, consider the following: Were you just having a bad [...]

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Adjusting for your Weaknesses

Even in small projects, one single person cannot be an expert at everything.  This is why small businesses hire accountants, lawyers, and other specialists to do supporting work.  Leaving these tasks to others helps the business owner and employees focus on what they’re good at. However, there will come a time when your weakness may [...]

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Conflict Management: Go to the Source First

It doesn’t matter what kind of work you do, you must work with other people.  And inevitably, this will cause conflict.  You and a teammate will not see eye to eye on an issue, which will cause both of you frustration.  It can be as little as how to file a report to as big [...]

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Complaining and Work

I’ve been working a project with a developer who has been particularly hard to work with.  It’s not like he’s incompetent, quite the opposite – he has a track record of success.  He also ships great products.  The problem is that he does not communicate well.  And when you’re getting down to the final days [...]

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Avoiding Gut Responses

While working on a collaborative writing project the other day, my co-worker came up with some new article titles.  I took one look at them and dismissed them out of hand. These kind of interactions happen all the time in project management.  A teammate comes up with a great idea, approaches a manager with it, [...]

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What Email Can’t Tell You

Yesterday, I had one of those traumatic email days where I felt a bombshell had been dropped in my inbox.  A teammate sent me an email that seemed to discredit some work I’d been doing.  I felt my face heat up out of embarrassment first, then anger as the thought “how does he know anything [...]

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You’re Not Perfect

You’re not perfect, so… Make the best plans you can given the information you have now. Don’t beat yourself up when things start to fall apart. Apologize if you are wrong and that will improve the atmosphere. Listen to others, but ultimately follow your gut. Take time off once in a while. Know that you [...]

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Why You Shouldn’t Wait to Answer Email

Modern day work environments are fraught with distractions.  Not only do you have co-workers who might walk by your desk to interrupt what you’re doing, but we communicate on so many more levels at work: e-mail, instant messaging, conference phone, cell phone, video conferencing, etc.  It is good for your productivity (and your sanity) to [...]

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Adding a New Team Member

Thinking of increasing your team by one?  Here are some questions your new team member should be able to answer in order to get up and running quickly: Who’s in charge? Who’s my mentor? Who will I work with? What do they do? When are they available? How will we communicate on a daily basis? [...]

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