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Sep 3, 2009

Of furloughs and following orders

While much of the state’s government will be shut down on Friday by Executive Order 01.01.2009.11, the courts will be up and running under Chief Judge Bell’s Administrative Order Pertaining to Temporary Salary Reduction etc. The distinction might seem clear enough, but as Julie Bykowicz writes in today’s Sun, lots of the lawyers who will […]

May 18, 2009

Pensions and Pregnancy

For Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, it must be a case of deja vu all over again, as Yogi Berra would say. The Supreme Court, over her dissent Monday, upheld a provision of an AT&T Corp. pension program that had subtracted from the retirement plan’s calculation of seniority the time female workers took off to give birth. […]

May 8, 2009

Law-firm layoffs: Should you be afraid?

From the American Lawyer by way of Texas Lawyer comes this short piece on how firms decide which associates to lay off. It’s worth a read, though there’s nothing earth-shattering. David Bario and Drew Combs write: So how are associates marked for extinction? Who lives, who dies, and why? It’s not simply a matter of […]

Apr 9, 2009

Ladies, pack your bags for Norway

After I wrote an article last week on the staggeringly low number of women who fill seats on the boards of Maryland’s publicly owned companies, I heard from the people who do marketing for Norway (yes, Norway the country) here in Baltimore. It seems that Norwegians are far more forward-thinking when it comes to gender […]

Jul 31, 2008

Who wears short shorts?

One of my coworkers recently attempted to break the workplace taboo against shorts. It was unsuccessful. (She asked me to note here that she believed the $60 price tag of the shorts would make them suitable for the office. So noted.) And now she sends me a story from The New York Times, discussing whether […]

Apr 22, 2008

Is getting mad at work only for men?

In 2006, I worked at a small publishing company with a female production manager who would often get visibly annoyed with fast-approaching deadlines. On a couple of occasions, she dropped a few four letter words with our boss present. And, five months into her tenure, she was fired after an outburst. Her behavior wasn’t completely […]

Apr 15, 2008

Waterboarding as a motivational tool

When it comes to humor, there is a fine line between funny and tasteless. There’s also a fine line between being topical and yesterday’s news. The lines intersect at different points, creating enough angles to exhaust a protractor. That said, I present this story from Sunday’s Washington Post about a lawsuit in Utah. It begins: […]

Apr 8, 2008

I don’t like Mondays… or Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays

Are you being productive today at the office? If not, you might just want to give up and call it a week. According to a survey by Accountemps, Tuesday is by far the most productive day of the workweek. Or so say a whopping 57 percent of respondents. A mere 3 percent say Fridays are […]

Mar 24, 2008

Is the workplace raunchier?

If it is, it may have something to do with miscommunication between male and female coworkers. Not that I’m pointing fingers; I’m merely adding 1 + 1 = 2. 1. More women say they heard sexually inappropriate comments at work last year (38%, up from 22% in 2006. Source: Novations Group). The percentage of men […]

Mar 20, 2008

Four decades of cubicles

Time magazine’s blog says the cubicle, our “soul-destroying workspace,” is 40 years old. So, apparently, it’s time for a face lift. Dilbert’s Scott Adams and a bunch of office designers have created the ideal cubicle (there’s a hammock and a bunch of options for your feet, including shag carpet and freshly cut grass.) I’d go […]

Mar 7, 2008

What’s your biggest weakness? No, seriously.

Do you work too hard? Are you too much of a leader? Are you just too terrific? According to a piece on, two of these three “weaknesses” are on the short list of ways to answer the “What’s your biggest weakness?” question in a job interview. The five: “I tend to talk too much.” […]

Mar 7, 2008

The benefits of bathroom-sharing

Does growing up with a shared bathroom give you better life management skills down the line? I hope not. But that certainly would clear up a few things. In “Lessons From the Family Bathroom” from The New York Times online, Tara Parker blogs on an essay that dissects the benefits of a shared family bathroom. […]

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