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The Seattle Times Career Center

Questions answered by industry experts.

July 23, 2014 at 4:00 AM

Q&A: Don’t back down when co-worker drives dangerously

Q: I’m afraid that I could be hurt or killed by colleagues who insist on texting while driving. Recently, one of my co-workers offered to drive us to a meeting with a new client. On the way back to the office, “Brad” received a text from his daughter and began reading it while we were in heavy traffic.


More in Career Advice | Topics: conflict, etiquette

July 11, 2014 at 4:00 AM

Career envy: how to conquer professional jealousy

Career envy existed long before social media, but Facebook and LinkedIn make it easier than ever to obsess over who’s doing better than you.


More in Career Advice | Topics: networking, social media

July 9, 2014 at 4:00 AM

Q&A: How can unfair vacation policy be fixed?

Q: In our company, most people get away with taking much more vacation than they should. These employees have bosses who allow them to keep their own records, while the rest of us work for managers who monitor our use of leave. As a result, we get less time off than everyone else.


More in Career Advice | Topics: benefits, HR, vacation

July 2, 2014 at 4:00 AM

Q&A: How can I get better at small talk?

I’m starting to attend more meetings with clients, and am not a good conversationalist. I’m OK when the talk is about business, but am no good at small talk. How can I learn?


More in Career Advice | Topics: interviewing, networking

June 25, 2014 at 9:41 AM

Q&A: How do I handle my nosy co-worker?

Q: I’m having difficulty with the person who was recently assigned to be my mentor. “Mark” is supposed to help me learn procedures in the research lab where I work as a graduate assistant. Although we get along well, he tends to ask a lot of personal questions.


More in Career Advice | Topics: etiquette, office politics

June 18, 2014 at 1:00 AM

Q&A: Can I exercise my right to skip workplace workouts?

  By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: Our company recently instituted exercise workouts for “professional development,” even though our jobs don’t involve any physical labor. Given my age and knee problems, I am concerned about participating in these sessions. I also worry that non-participation could affect my career, because the leader of…


More in Career Advice | Topics: management, older workers

June 13, 2014 at 7:21 AM

Just say no: How — and when — to turn people down

Is saying “no” so difficult for you that you end up with way too many commitments? If so, you’re likely to constantly feel overextended, with no time for yourself. Here’s how to get out of that hole — and stay out of it.


More in Career Advice | Topics: management, work/life balance

June 11, 2014 at 7:02 AM

Q&A: ‘Helper’ creating more work for swamped employee

By Marie G. McIntyre / McClatchy-Tribune News Service Q: I have been struggling for months to keep up with a steadily increasing workload. My manager recognized the problem and assigned a co-worker to help, but this is doing more harm than good. Although “Rachel” completes tasks very quickly, she tends to make a lot of…


More in Career Advice | Topics: conflict, management

June 4, 2014 at 3:00 AM

Q&A: Co-worker blurring the lines on Facebook

Q: A co-worker of mine posts offensive material on her Facebook page (four-letter words and the like). I told her that it was not only offensive to me personally, but that it also reflected badly on our organization.


More in Career Advice | Topics: etiquette, social media

May 28, 2014 at 2:20 PM

Q&A: Should I help my colleague’s floundering employees?

Q: What can I do to help employees at my company who don’t report to me? I know that some employees on one team do not feel connected to or supported by their manager. While I don’t want to step on her toes, it’s frustrating to see talented employees not receive the development assistance they need.


More in Career Advice | Topics: communication, HR, management

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