How to React to Biased Comments at Work

Bias at work can be overt and insidious. It can be shocking and enraging. But the subtle “Wait, what just happened?” moments are far more frequent. Take these examples: A client assumes you are in a subordinate role because of your age. A prospective customer only makes eye contact with your white colleague. A coworker [...]

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How to Change Someone’s Opinion of You

Dear Steve, Last year, our department’s vice president was laid off and the entire group was moved under the Director of Operations, someone I didn’t know very well. Since the change, he has not made much of an effort to get to know our team and I have had only a handful of interactions with [...]


When to Solve Your Team’s Problems, and When to Let Them Sort It Out

After careful review of her harried work life, Charla, an IT manager, discovered that 20% of her time over the previous two months was spent managing escalations. It seemed that each interaction with her team ended with her feeling a need to exercise her authority to rescue them from a crisis. For example: Sarah complains [...]

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How to End a Relationship Stand-Off

Dear Joseph, I work with clients who are in conflict with each other. Their “stories” about the other person make resolution impossible. They’ve been in conflict with each other for so long that they are convinced that their judgments are facts. For example, they are both convinced the other person is a jerk, a bully, [...]


How to Address Bad Body Odor

Dear Joseph, My son tells me his roommate at college has a body odor issue. It has become so bad that my son stays at his girlfriend’s more often than not. He has mentioned to his roommate that there is a terrible odor in the room, but hasn’t gone much farther than that. He did [...]

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