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Back in September with Season Two!
We’re delighted to be making more episodes of Women at Work for you. Download this podcast Help shape our conversations by responding to these questions. You can answer as few or as many as you’d like: What work decisions do you struggle with? Do you overthink? Stress about making the best choice? Is there a strategy you’ve found useful in making complex decisions? Ever wonder if being a woman influences your decision making? Tell us about a time when a colleague took credit for your idea: What happened? How did it make you feel? Did you speak up about it? And what about w [...]
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How Are You Protecting Your High Performers from Burnout?
Phil Ashley/Getty Images A little over a year ago, a high-performing specialist at one of the largest technologies companies — we’ll call him Santiago — was given an opportunity no high performer could turn down: an opportunity to play a manager role on a project he really cared about. The director told him, “You care about this; you lead it.” So he did, and all seemed to be going well — even though he was planning a significant company-wide event at the same time, a role he had volunteered for. “We had a really important conferen [...]
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How to Identify and Tell Your Most Powerful Stories
Jeong Woo Kim/EyeEm/Getty Images When I ask executives what their favorite speech is, Steve Jobs’s Stanford commencement address is always at the top of the list. Many think of Jobs’s talk as their favorite because it is incredibly moving — thanks to the stories it contains. Execs love to hear talks like this, but few are comfortable delivering them. Why? Because great stories expose our flaws and our struggles. This is what makes them inspiring, and not sharing them is such a missed opportunity to connect with your audience. When my firm helps executives craft ta [...]
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When Did the U.S. Stop Seeing Teachers as Professionals?
J PAT CARTER/Getty Images Teachers have had enough. Since March, schools in West Virginia, Oklahoma, Kentucky, Arizona, Colorado and North Carolina have either been shut down or turned into sites of resistance. In Kansas, teachers are threatening to strike because their legislature continues to fund schools at a level the state Supreme Court has deemed unconstitutional. One Brookings Institute analysis projected that teacher actions could spread to another 11 states. Poor pay, increased health care costs, and diminished pension plans are certainly core issues — teachers in Ok [...]
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Getting People to Help You
Heidi Grant, a social psychologist, explains the right ways and wrong ways to ask colleagues for help. She says people are much more likely to lend us a hand than we think they are; they just want it to be a rewarding experience. Grant is the author of Reinforcements: How to Get People to Help You. Download this podcast [...]
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Can Being Overconfident Make You a Better Leader?
OLI SCARFF/Getty Images When Apple CEO Steve Jobs approached AT&T about partnering on a new kind of mobile phone — a touchscreen computer that would fit in your pocket — Apple had no expertise in the mobile market. Yet AT&T executives quickly came to believe so strongly in Job’s vision that they skipped internal process protocols to land the deal. Randall Stephenson, then CEO of AT&T, famously said, “I told people you weren’t betting on a device. You were betting on Steve Jobs.” Apple went on to secure massive commitments from [...]
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Drowning in Work? Here’s How to Ask a Colleague for Help.
HBR Staff Raise your hand if you have an insurmountable pile of projects on your to-do list and an inbox so terrifying to behold that you can hardly bear to behold it. Cue the sea of arms waving wildly. You have too much to do. You can’t do it alone. You need people to help you. Why aren’t they helping you?!? Here’s the uncomfortable truth: If you aren’t getting the support you need with your crushing workload, odds are it’s kind of your fault. Cue the sea of angry readers giving their screens the finger right now. What I mean is, you probably aren’t [...]
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When Workplace Cultures Support Paternity Leave, All Employees Benefit
Gary John Norman/Getty Images Employers are increasingly finding ways to meet the needs of working fathers, offering them family leave, flexible scheduling, and affordable child care options. But fathers remain reluctant to take full advantage of this support, despite professing to want to be equal partners with mothers in child care, with all the diapering, meal planning, and carpooling that entails. In our research on family leave policies and parenting culture in Scotland, we heard repeatedly that fathers felt worried and even embarrassed to use offered leave and flexible working entitlem [...]
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How Employers in Poor Countries Are Using Nudges to Help Employees Save Money
HBR Staff One of the most common ways to get people to save is through their employer. In particular, behavioral economics—that marriage of economics and psychology that has put terms like “nudge” into the popular lexicon—has provided a powerful tool for increasing savings, in the form of the default enrollment. The idea is simple: people save more in retirement accounts when they are automatically enrolled by their employer than when they have to sign up themselves. Most U.S. employers have adopted default savings programs, but the idea is only just entering  [...]
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Why Workplaces Need to Be Fairer to Working Dads
Artiga Photo/Getty Images Each year around Father’s Day, some businesses take a moment to express well wishes for the working dads among the staff. Unfortunately, that sensibility is too often short-lived. Seventy-three percent of U.S. working fathers say there is little workplace support for fathers, according to a new survey from Promundo and Dove Men+Care. (I have a partnership with the latter and had the chance to weigh in on some of the questions as the survey was developed.) It gets worse. Not only do many men fear negative repercussions if they were to take the full amount of pa [...]
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What to Do When Your Boss Won’t Advocate for You
baranozdemir/Getty Images Having a great boss is a potentially life-changing gift. On the other hand, many of us know firsthand that having a bad boss can cause a lot of drama, headaches, and stress. While it’s easy to love the great bosses and flee the bad ones, there’s one kind of boss that’s much less straightforward to navigate: the boss who doesn’t advocate for you. You might not even know that you have one. Most advocacy happens behind the scenes and in conversations to which you yourself are not privy. As the adage goes, 80% of what’s said about you is sa [...]
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Annoying Subordinates
Does your direct report get on your nerves? In this episode of HBR’s advice podcast, Dear HBR:, cohosts Alison Beard and Dan McGinn answer your questions with the help of Art Markman, a psychology professor at the University of Texas at Austin and cohost of the podcast Two Guys on Your Head. They talk through how to manage someone who is unlikable, overly polite, or passive-aggressive. Download this podcast Listen to more episodes and find out how to subscribe on the Dear HBR: page. Send in your questions about workplace dilemmas by emailing Dan and Alison at dearhbr@hbr.org. From Alison [...]
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