Are workers coming in just for coffee? Trouble's brewing

Are workers coming in just for coffee? Trouble's brewing | practice | Mothball multitasking: Rushing is doing you no favors
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December 19, 2023
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Leading the Way
Are workers coming in just for coffee? Trouble's brewing
(andresr/Getty Images)
Nearly 60% of hybrid workers -- and about two-thirds of their managers -- have engaged in "coffee badging," where they come into the office long enough to swipe their ID badge, grab some coffee, and then head back home to work. The practice can be a warning sign of burnout among your employees, says Niki Jorgensen, managing director of client implementation with Insperity, who recommends having frank conversations with team members about their needs and implementing flexible schedules.
Full Story: Fox Business (12/18) 
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Put it into practice: If you notice a lot of "coffee-badging" happening, it's time to get curious about your team's needs and concerns, says Jorgensen. You may discover "that the motivations for coffee badging are rarely ill-intentioned."
SmartBrief on Leadership
Mothball multitasking: Rushing is doing you no favors
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Rushing "robs your focus and damages your mind and body," writes leadership consultant Joel Garfinkle, often putting a dent in both your work and home life. Garfinkle outlines six strategies to help dial back stress and give you space to breathe, such as ending the habit of multitasking.
Full Story: SmartBrief/Leadership (12/18) 
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Put it into practice: Giving your full attention to a single task builds concentration and can help you accomplish more. Garfinkle also suggests how to avoid getting overwhelmed by big projects, why to stop nitpicking and redefining your maximum capacity, among other strategies.
Read more from Joel Garfinkle on SmartBrief on Leadership
Smarter Communication
Supporting and helping young employees grow, especially their soft skills, is more complicated with remote work, but flexibility is essential, writes Bryan Otte, the chief human resources officer at MGAC. Noting an Albert Einstein quote -- "You cannot use an old map to explore a new world" -- Otte offers suggestions for adapting a mentor/mentee relationship, including making intentional matches that involve "mutual respect and compatibility."
Full Story: Chief Executive (12/15) 
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Put it into practice: Mentors and mentees both can benefit from the relationship's career advancement as well as personal and professional growth, so specific training for mentors will help them navigate the sometimes tricky territory of written or virtual communication, Otte writes. Recognize that younger people will get more benefit from having multiple mentees for different areas of growth, and make sure both parties know the learning can flow both ways.
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SmartPulse
Do you have your team members write self-appraisals and use those as a basis for the review you write?
Yes
 73.64%
No
 15.46%
We don't write performance appraisals
 10.90%
Write it yourself. If you have the opportunity to write your own self appraisal (and based on the poll results, it looks like most people do), there are a few tips for getting the appraisal you want and deserve.

First, write it in the third person which makes it easier for your manager to cut and paste your well-written words about yourself. It also minimizes the amount of editing they'll need to do which they'll appreciate.

Second, be fact-based in your assessment. The more you stretch things, the more likely it is that your manager will discard your thoughts and write a more balanced appraisal. Where you have facts to back up performance assertions, use them. Metrics are solid ways to establish performance.

And finally, present a balanced picture. Include the things that didn't go well. It demonstrates self-awareness and makes it easier to have the final appraisal conversation because your manager knows you're already aware of those shortcomings.

-- Mike Figliuolo is managing director of thoughtLEADERS, which includes TITAN -- the firm's e-learning platform. Previously, he worked at McKinsey & Co., Capital One and Scotts Miracle-Gro. He is a West Point graduate and author of three leadership books: "One Piece of Paper," "Lead Inside the Box" and "The Elegant Pitch."
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In Their Own Words
How this CEO uses mindfulness to help creativity
(Pixabay)
Ryan Glick, CEO and founder of CNC Agency, explains why mindfulness is the tool he most uses at work. "In this fast-paced world of creative and agency life, it can be challenging to live in the present moment," Glick says, noting, "I integrate mindfulness into my daily routine, regardless of my location, ensuring I maintain clarity and creativity in my work."
Full Story: Adweek (12/15) 
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Daily Diversion
Tanyapong Jaikham, a rice farmer in Thailand, and his crew are creating cat-themed artwork in their rice fields by designing portraits of cats (one snuggling up with a fish) that tourists can see in elevated viewing towers. Getting the shading on the aerial artwork is an art in itself, says Tanyapong, because "the rice will gradually change shades over time."
Full Story: Reuters (12/18) 
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SmartBreak: Question of the Day
Yuck -- eggnog is my least favorite holiday beverage, so it makes no sense to me that there was an "Eggnog Riot" that took place on which military campus?
VoteUS Navy, Annapolis, Md.
VoteUS Air Force, Colorado Springs, Colo.
VoteUS Coast Guard, New London, Conn.
VoteUS Army, West Point, N.Y.
About The Editor
Candace Chellew
Candace Chellew
Chellew
When I worked at CNNRadio in the late 1990s, I was expected to be a master at multitasking. I operated what was known as "Master C." It was a studio with several banks of small screens, two reel-to-reel tape machines (yes, this was before we digitally edited sound), a large soundboard and a computer to input each sound clip (or actuality, as we called them).

I was the only person in the room and was tasked with monitoring all of CNN's networks, live feeds and other networks (in case they broke news we had yet to hear). It was a hectic job because the news anchors would be watching a press conference or other report and telling you which piece of sound they wanted for their next newscast, which inevitably was coming up in just a few minutes.

I was in constant motion in that room -- stopping one reel-to-reel to retrieve an actuality while the other whirred on. It was like being in an air traffic control tower!

I loved the job, though, since I'm a bit distractible. Having to pay attention to 20 things at once felt easy for me, but I understand why Joel Garfinkle and researchers warn us away from multitasking. There were certainly things I missed; on hectic days, another person would be in that small room with me to pitch in.

These days, I try to multitask less. I do more work faster if I can concentrate on one thing.

How about you? Can you multitask? Have you found it detrimental or helpful? Let me know.

If this newsletter helps you, please tell your colleagues, friends or anyone who can benefit. Forward them this email, or send this link.

What topics do you see in your daily work that I should know about? Do you have praise? Criticism? Drop me a note. And don't forget to send me photos of your pets, your office and where you spend your time off.
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You will have the opportunity to say 'Yes' to many different things, but you also will have the opportunity in the saying of 'Yes' to say 'No' sometimes.
Cokie Roberts,
broadcast journalist, writer
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