Don't Accept the Unacceptable Q: I work at a small company that makes a lot of money. Actually, I should say the owner and his wife make a lot of money. No employees receive high salaries no matter their jobs, but the owner lives the lifestyle of the rich and famous, despite he …Read more. Dress for the Job You Want, Not the Job You Have Q: I offer my experience for those who want to move ahead in their careers. My first real summer job while in college was as a stock boy in a small bank in the Detroit area. On my first day, I wore a white shirt, tie, pressed brown slacks and …Read more. Staff Just Wants Respect Q: I am a recent college graduate in my first job. I am part of the staff that assists the consultants. We call them the "suits," and they are the professionals that work directly with the clients. My question doesn't just pertain to my company; it …Read more. 5-Tier Retaliation for Whistle-Blowing Q: My wife found discrepancies in the managers' receipts, which launched a serious investigation that led to the manager being fired for embezzlement. Three other managers were and still are friends with this former manager, and have spent the last …Read more.more articles
Coughing Employee Irritates Co-Workers
Q: I work in a government agency call center with 11 co-workers, one supervisor and one manager. One of our call takers has had a chronic and annoying cough since she started working here more than a year ago. She insists her cough is not contagious, yet the rest of us in the department are out sporadically for three to five days with colds, coughs or flu. We have no choice but to breathe the same air as this co-worker. How do we stay healthy with her in our office? No one has the authority to make her stay home until the cough stops.
A: It is common for office workers breathing the same recycled air in a building to come down with colds and other minor viruses. It is not likely that the woman has tuberculosis, since her cough has remained the same all year and her general health has not worsened. Chronic coughs can be caused for many reasons, among those is an allergic cough due to the various seasonal blooms or food. It is annoying to listen to, and probably annoys her as well. With the right type of coaxing, you may be able to convince her to see an allergist. Do some research for her on chronic coughs, and give her all the articles you find. She may be the type who doesn't like going to doctors, but once you show her that a chronic cough is not normal, it shouldn't take much to get her to make an appointment.
Sharing Negative Information Without Being Negative
Q: I work for a company where I know the owner very well and have a mentoring relationship with him. Recently, he hired a new vice president whose behavior is inappropriate. He has shared very negative, personal family background information with me, which I did not know how to respond to.
A: Don't say anything. Let the new vice president's e-mails speak for themselves. Surely you kept copies of everything. Since the owner is your mentor, simply forward all the VP's e-mails to him with a memo saying you thought he should know how this man communicates with his employees. Include every e-mail — insults, accusations, hostile and inappropriate — especially the e-mail about liking to mess with people's minds. Also print out every e-mail and keep copies in a safe place. You may need them at a later date. Postpone your leave of absence in the midst of this problem. An employee doesn't have to explain reasons for a LOA, but the owner does have the right to refuse approving it.
Please send your questions to: Lindsey Novak, c/o Creators Syndicate, 5777 W. Century Blvd. Suite 700, Los Angeles, Calif. 90045. E-mail her at LindseyNovak@yahoo.com, or visit her Web site at www.lindseynovak.com. To find out more about Lindsey Novak and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.
COPYRIGHT 2007 CREATORS SYNDICATE, INC.