Pop Ops

It’s the MOST ANXIETY-FUL Time of the Year

The holiday season is upon us, and for many this also means the onset of constant stress. Maybe it’s the thought of spending a lot of time with family and in-laws or maybe it’s coordinating travel. It could even be the stress of a tight budget with a growing list of holiday expenses. Whatever the reason, the holidays, while often one of the most joyful times of year, often cause significant stress.

How to Manage Stress Better Than Ryan Reynolds

Unfortunately, we cannot control all the aspects in life that cause us stress. It’s not up to us what traffic will be like on a given day. What we can do, however, is control our reactions to these stressors and try to mitigate situations before they overwhelm us.

Wait, Am I Really the Office B- - -h??

I’m sure we’ve all experienced a moment when we don’t recognize or like the image of ourselves reflected back from those around us. The important thing is to force ourselves to be self-aware, and to pay equal attention not to how we ourselves behave, but how other perceive and respond to our behaviors.

Without Your Supporting Players, It All Comes Crashing Down

Last but not least in my BBC binge review is the sweet, slightly sad sitcom The IT Crowd, which can serve as a cautionary tale about what happens when you neglect the very employees who keep your business up and running.

And You Thought Your Office Meetings Were Bad…..

Despite all the hilarious mishaps and shenanigans in each episode of the BBC sitcom W1a, the scenes that I found most painfully to watch were the management team meetings, usually in response to a totally avoidable PR crisis. These scenes help me put together a series of tips you can use to ensure productive and painless meetings every time!

What a Baking Show Can Teach Us About Constructive Feedback

To TV audiences who automatically associate reality television with manufactured drama, outlandish antisocial behavior, and cruel criticism bordering on abuse, The Great British Bake Off is a breath of fresh air – or more accurately a breath of healthy competition and good sportsmanship. And while the judges, Mary and Paul, have to provide critique and make an elimination in every episode, they do so in a way that demonstrates utmost respect and consideration for the efforts and skills of the contestants.

Watching TV May Not Make You Smarter, But It Can Make You Better At Your Job!

This winter I was on a big BBC kick, and a few series left me with more substantial takeaways than just their pure entertainment value. They’ve also inspired some interesting insights into honest communication, strategies for productive meetings, and beneficial management practices.

Ask a Lawyer: What’s Wrong with Handshake Deals?

This week, business attorney Joan Teich is back for another installment of “Ask a Lawyer,” in which she analyzes a business law case from a recent movie and provides another perfect example of the risks of not understanding the implications of a business decision.

Not “The Bobs”: A Different Kind of Consulting

For many people, the idea of consultants conjures up the image of the infamous Bobs from the movie Office Space—humorless businessmen brought in by upper management to eliminate positions or tell everyone how to do their jobs. What I do is something different.

Stop Saying “Knope” To Delegating Tasks

Learning to delegate is a critical skill for anyone who seeks to increase professional responsibility and authority, or serve in any sort of management or leadership position. While it is not an easy skill to master, I do have some tips for making it a less painful and more productive transition for everyone involved.

Lucy, the Chocolate Factory, and Quality Management

Quality management is a fancy way to describe the steps taken to make sure that the work being performed in any workplace is consistently done the way it’s supposed to be done. This post looks at how quality management would have helped in the class chocolate factory episode of "I Love Lucy"!

How to Make Change Less Painful for Everyone

In the last installation of “Process This!” we examined the infamous TPS cover report incident from the movie "Office Space" as an example of poor change management and faulty communication in implementing a new company policy. In this post I'm going to offer some strategies for success in introducing workplace changes.

The Problem Wasn't the TPS Report: It was the Memo

In Office Space, the TPS report and cover page memo represent everything that is wrong with office culture. But status reports, performance metrics, and other unsexy documents are inevitable and necessary in every office. I would like to make the case that the TPS report incident exemplifies poor change management, rather than a symbol of everything wrong with the modern workplace.

Whose Role is it Anyway?

One of my favorite running jokes in the early seasons of the “The Office” is the dispute over the role of Dwight Schrute. Dwight claims to be the Assistant Regional Manager of the Scranton, PA branch of Dunder Mifflin, a paper distribution company. Dwight’s boss and colleagues maintain that he’s the Assistant to the Regional Manager.