GUYS LET'S DO THIS
A Maryland crab feast, in which blue crabs are steamed with Old Bay seasoning, is a culinary tradition worth learning how to prepare—and eat. This guide takes you through steaming the crabs and picking them apart, one step at a time. Read More
These look so good! Sohla El-Waylly is a newish addition to the SeriousEats staff and she is knocking it out of the park. (She's the author behind the Vietnamese chicken meatballs AND the infamous aji amarillo chicken!)
Pelon Pelo Rico is a sticky, tamarind-flavored candy paste spiked with chili and salt. It’s the kind of messy, goopy, and shameless treat only a child can love, but I’ll always be hooked on the combo of spicy, sour, salty, and sweet. These popsicles are inspired by the flavors of Pelon Pelo Rico, but all grown up with real tamarind concentrate, nutty palm sugar, and a sharp hit of tang from malic acid. Read More
Wow Apartment Therapy is changing
Period sex is a highlight of what I, personally, consider the most miserable 3-5 days of the month. Because of my birth control, it's been about a year since I've had an actual period, but the previous fifteen years of intermittent anguish are burned into my memory: cramps, mood swings, anxiety attacks, ruined underwear, bloating, acne, and spotted sheets, to name just a few symptoms. But sex on my period? The heightened sensitivity, increased natural lubrication, and diminished cramps weren't enough to erase everything else I was going through — but it certainly helped.
Then there's the issue of the mess.
Ignore the "trying-way-too-hard" headline ... these look super tasty!
Vietnamese-inspired meatballs are so quick, easy, and cheap to throw together that they're one of our go-to meals or midnight snacks. Read More
I'll take one of each please
The slushie cocktails I bookmarked last summer, for this summer. I think it’s best that we stop at eleven here 😉 It’s my personal slushie list, inspired by some of my favorite cocktail maestros.
3. Color-Changing Frozen Mojito – (Buzzfeed)
Have to admit, I’m intrigued by this one. Red cabbage is infused into boiling water to create blue simple syrup. When the acid in the lime juice hits it, color shift! I think it’s in the Tasty cookbook, and you can see it play out in the video. Get the recipe here.
8. Cherry Moscato Slush – (Salt & Lavender)
I always stock up on frozen cherries (because I’m usually too lazy to pit them). Pair those with a bottle of moscato and a spike of lime, and this is where you’re at. Contender for best-looking slushie cocktail. Get the recipe here.
9. Strawberry Dragonfruit Margarita – (Host The Toast)
In addition to frozen cherries, I always stock up on frozen dragonfruit puree when I come across it. I can imagine a version of this using the puree being A+! Get the recipe here.
10. Frozen Blood Orange Negroni – (The Kitchn)
The classic Negroni is equal parts gin, Campari, and sweet vermouth. Here it meets the blender and gets rounded out with fresh blood orange juice. Yes, please. Get the recipe here.
Also, just in case you want to get serious and roll out your own slushie machine, you’re going to want to read this. Straight talk from the master: How to use a slushie machine. And, here’s a little tip sheet on Bon Appétit related to crafting your own frozen drinks. Lastly! I also love (and make a lot of) weeknight non-alcohol cocktails, let me know if you’d like me to do a list of those. Enjoy!
oof this is a TERRIBLE response (from the letter writer ... Alison as usual nails it). it is crazy to me how much offense some of these writers manage to take at some things.
A reader writes:
I’ve been a fan and daily reader of your site for months and months. I am excited to finally have a question for you. It’s nothing too earth-shaking compared to your usual fare, but more of an etiquette question.
A person in a different department wrote me an email last week, telling me that she needed something “ASAP.” It has to do with an invoice she gave me the week before. I work with her maybe once a month or so, always having to do with invoices.
This term makes me bristle for a number of reasons:
• I served in the Navy, and this term reminds me of the demeaning and condescending way that some officers and senior enlisted talked to the lowly swabbies. In fact, I think this acronym even originated in the military, in the Army.
• It seems a bossy way to write to someone not even in her department, much less a part of her reporting structure.
• It seems overly dramatic, as if to say: “I need this so badly and urgently that I don’t even have time to write out a softer-sounding alternative,” such as “as soon as you can get to it,” “at your earliest convenience,” etc.
• It kind of implies that I’m just sitting on things, and need to be prompted to take action.
• It also, to my mind, implies that I don’t know how to prioritize tasks, that I can’t set my own priorities.
• It is presumptuous in that she has no idea what I have going on, what tasks are right in front of me, or what my priorities are from my manager.
• One of the online discussions said you shouldn’t write in an email what you wouldn’t say to someone in person, and actually telling someone you need something ASAP would sound very harsh.
There is one person who I work with closely, and often, and in a very friendly way, and we have mutual dependencies for getting parts of our jobs done. He will occasionally write ASAP, as will I, to communicate that this particular item really is important and time-sensitive. But this is pretty rare.
I pondered all this, and then sent her a brief response: “Everything I do is ASAP! I didn’t get a chance to look at this yet. Thanks,” etc.
Boy, did that set her off. She fired back a three-paragraph rant, liberally punctuated with ASAPs in almost every sentence. It was a monument to ASAP. She also copied her manager. At this point, I was officially angry, and so have backed off to cool down, not wanting to write something that I would regret.
What is your opinion of ASAP? Do you use it? Am I overly thin-skinned about this?
I might add that she is not a native speaker of English. I think “ASAP” is part of the business jargon she picked up along the way. So, I’m willing to concede that if it’s as annoying as I think it is, she might not have a good context for understanding that. On a side note, we’ve actually always gotten along pretty well, so I am also wondering about how to approach her next time I see her. She is hard to communicate with sometimes due to the language barrier, so I don’t know if it would be worthwhile to try to explain why I object to her use of ASAP.
ASAP can be annoying in some contexts, but it’s also pretty standard wording and not something you should take offense over.
ASAP isn’t annoying because it’s bossy or implies that you’d otherwise be lazy. It’s annoying because it’s vague. Some people use “ASAP” to mean “normally these requests can take a couple of weeks, but I need this one back in a couple of days.” Other times people use “ASAP” to mean “if you don’t drop everything to complete this in the next hour, the company will shutter and you will be in jail by this evening — it’s truly urgent and of the highest importance.” Because there’s such a wide variation in possible meaning, it’s not that helpful. It’s far more useful for people to spell out what they really mean.
But it’s really, really common, so you shouldn’t take it personally or bristle at it.
If you need more info about when the person truly needs it by, it’s fine to write back and say, “Since I have a bunch of high priorities right now, can you tell me more about when you need this by so I can fit it in with everything else?”
Your coworker sounds like she overreacted to your email, but … your email wasn’t great. She told you an invoice from last week was a high priority, and so you should have at least told her when you’d be able to get to it. Telling her that everything you do is a high priority and you haven’t looked at it yet wasn’t helpful — and in fact was essentially ignoring what she’d just said. At a minimum she needed to hear “I should be able to process by X” so she could tell you if it needed to be faster than that or not.
And if the invoice was unusually urgent and she was trying to tell you that, it would be frustrating to hear “I’m not going to change anything about what I’m doing, and I’ll get to it when I get to it,” which is basically what you communicated. I can see why that might result in a concerned response cc’ing her manager.
As for what to do from here? Dig out that invoice and process it, and let her know that you’re sorry that you didn’t take her initial message more seriously. You could explain that “ASAP” isn’t very helpful to you because so many requests are “ASAP” but that in the future, if she explains her timeline more explicitly, you’ll do what you can to meet it and let her know if you won’t be able to.
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I am so confused by this person's traffic and life environment:
-they have to get in by 7 to "beat the traffic" yet traffic when they leave at 6pm (WHICH IS STILL PEAK RUSH HOUR) only takes 30 minutes?
-They have to go to bed by 8pm ... why exactly? in order to have enough sleep to get into work by 7am the next day (which we've established is less than a 30 minute commute, if they're 'beating the traffic')? so if they leave at 6:30, let's say they get up at 5:30... so they needed 9.5 hours of sleep!? what is happening here, am I missing something?
A reader writes:
Thanks to your blog, I found the job of my dreams. I have so much autonomy and my boss is amazing.
I arrive at 7 a.m. to beat the morning traffic. I leave at 4 p.m., again, to beat the traffic. My wonderful boss knows this. She’s in by 9 and out by 5. I have received glowing praise from my boss in the short time I’ve been here.
I live with my dad because I can’t afford to move out. I make $30,000, salary. He insists I should stay later, to “show dedication,” that I should leave after my boss leaves.
Obviously, I stay when I have to get things done. When I do stay, I leave at 6 and get home by 6:30. I’m in bed by 8. I don’t see that being a healthy pattern for the long term.
I don’t understand this advice to prove I’m interested in the job. Is this suggestion outdated or does it have merit?
I do think there was a time when this was common “how to get ahead” advice, but it’s pretty outdated at this point. At least for most bosses, and certainly for good bosses.
Good bosses don’t expect you to put in face time just for the principle of it. They expect you to get great results in your work. If that sometimes means that you need to stay late to get that done, they’ll expect you to do that. But they won’t expect you to do it just to “show dedication.” In fact, they actively won’t want you to do that, because that’s a bad use of your time and contributes to a messed up culture that values the wrong things.
It’s true that there are some bosses who don’t know how to effectively assess performance and so they rely on things like “how often do I see this person here as late as me?” But they’re bad bosses, and the goal is to avoid working for them.
If your boss is happy with your work and you are getting glowing praise, you are in good shape.
Your dad has outdated notions on this one.
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do I really need to stay at work late to “show dedication”? was originally published by Alison Green on Ask a Manager.
Oh man #3 is happening right around here I think! That's gotta be Mount Ida, right?
It’s four answers to four questions. Here we go…
1. My boss killed my plant
My office is windowless, so when I left for my two weeks’ vacation I asked my boss, Jane, if I could leave my miniature rose on the wide windowsill in hers while I was gone. She said sure, and agreed to water it a few times as well.
When I got back, however, the plant had been returned to my desk and was in an advanced state of dehydration. Jane told me that it had fruit flies, which quite reasonably bothered her, so she took it out of her office — but then she left it in the dark and didn’t water it, and it has since become obvious that it’s not going to survive.
To be clear, it doesn’t bother me at all that Jane didn’t want to deal with the fruit flies; they irritate me too and I’m aggressively swatting them as fast as I can. But it does bother me that she neglected the plant to the point of it dying. I mean, this is a grocery store miniature rose and I even have a cutting from it that’s prospering, but still. She killed my plant, and didn’t even apologize; she seems to think that she doesn’t need to because of the fruit fly issue. What now?
Well, there isn’t really a next step here. It’s pretty likely that Jane just forgot to water your plant once she wasn’t seeing it in her office every day, as opposed to malicious neglect. Yes, she should notice it’s now dying and apologize, but who knows, maybe she’s not a plant person and hasn’t even put it together. In any case, it’s not the kind of thing that makes sense for you to escalate with her in any way. You can’t force an apology or get her to confess to plant-slaughter; just assume you shouldn’t leave plants or other living things in her custody in the future.
2. Our CEO wants everyone to donate a percentage of their pay back to the organization
I am a director in a mid-size nonprofit. I report directly to the CEO. We are going through some service delivery changes and restructuring that are not 100% popular with the staff at every level.
Recently, the CEO rolled out the “opportunity” for employees to donate a percentage of their paycheck back to the organization, via a letter talking about what an honor it should be to support the company in this way, and assuring everyone that it would not affect their job in any way if they don’t choose to. She asked us to forward to our reports. I did forward the email once, without comment, to my team. Meanwhile, I was feeling a lot of pressure to contribute, so I selected a small amount to be deducted from each paycheck.
I do support and believe in our mission, and do give back in a number of ways. I am very fairly compensated in my role, but we have a lot of entry-level direct service workers who don’t make a ton of money. I do not feel right asking them this or even reminding them. I sent it out once and that’s all I am going to do. The CEO has sent another email, asking us to tell our team that we are contributing and that they should, too.
This whole thing leaves a bad tase in my mouth. Not only is it unfair to assume that everyone wants to donate to a charity that is also their employer, but I believe it opens us up to scrutiny from staff about how all money is used (such as conferences, etc.) It’s not the same as being able to buy stock in a company where you get dividends, and we have been known to do layoffs (and recently) and I don’t like the implication that this would somehow save everyone from that. Is this a normal thing?
It’s not unheard of, unfortunately. (This is one way nonprofits can be very different from other employers.) It’s gross but not uncommon.
It’s one thing to give staff an opportunity to donate, but it’s really inappropriate to pressure them to — at any level, but especially with lower-paid workers. Some (not all) nonprofits have an ethos that employees should donate to support the organization’s mission, which overlooks the fact that they may be donating simply by virtue of accepting less than they’d make working at a for-profit (and even if not, any work that’s above and beyond could be thought of as a donation in support of the organization’s mission).
Depending on what kind of rapport you have with your CEO, you could explain that you shared the initial request but you think continued follow-up will put a bad taste in people’s mouths and be counterproductive. Or, if you don’t feel like you have the standing to say that, you could just quietly ignore it — or if you can’t get away with that, you could forward it on with a clear “Jane asked me to share this request with you, but this is entirely up to you.”
3. Who gets to keep the travel voucher if you’re bumped from a flight for work?
My new position requires that I do a fair amount of travel. As an avid traveler outside of work as well, I am fascinated by a recent story in the news where a woman was given a $10,000 travel voucher for being involuntarily bumped from a flight.
While this woman was traveling for personal reasons, I’m wondering what the ethics would be if she had been traveling for business? If she had been bumped from her flight while on her way to or from a business trip, would she be entitled to keep the voucher for personal use? Or would she be expected to hand it over to her company for future business travel? After all, the company would be paying for the original ticket.
My business trips mostly take me to a small regional airport that is only accessible via a layover through a very busy hub. While I’ve gotten lucky so far, every time I’ve been delayed getting out of my home airport and have JUST made a really tight connection. It’s only a matter of time before I get stuck in the middle of my trip, or end up on an overbooked flight. Of course I would never volunteer my seat if I needed to make it to a business meeting or back to my home office, but in the hypothetical event I was involuntarily bumped, and negotiated compensation from the airline, what should happen to the travel voucher?
Companies sometimes have policies on this that would require you to hand over the voucher (including, I believe, if you work for the government). In companies that don’t have a policy, I’d say that ethically it’s yours if you were personally inconvenienced — for example, if you had been scheduled to get home at 7 p.m. but getting bumped meant you didn’t get in until 8 a.m the next day. That said, it’s smart to check with your employer if you’re unsure how they’d want you to handle it.
Also, $10,000?! That’s surprisingly enormous.
4. The school where I got my degree is closing
I graduated a few years ago from a small private college and still live in the area. While it isn’t a top tier school, it has a good reputation and offered a strong program for my degree. I’m currently employed but job searching.
The school has just announced that it’s closing. The circumstances are not great. Apparently they just signed new faculty contracts last month, and new students were accepted for the fall and offered generous financial aid packages. The president even received a significant raise recently. And now the school is shuttering with very little notice because of financial issues. Students are scrambling. Parents are crying and angrily protesting in public meetings. The story is being closely followed by local and regional news outlets and it’s pretty much a scandal.
I am concerned that having a degree from this school will reflect badly on me as I job search. I’m not sure if it would look worse to take my degree off of my resume/be vague about my academic background. My field does require a degree, so I’d be disqualified for any position I want if I don’t present at least some information. I’m not sure how to even tactfully discuss the situation if it comes up in an interview. What to do?
Don’t take the degree off your resume! The school’s financial problems don’t reflect on the value of your education or your degree. Sometimes schools close — not often, but it happens. That doesn’t render the degrees they granted worthless, not at all. If the school had a good reputation for academics, that’s what matters. And if an interviewer asks you about it, it’s likely to be as small talk or to express sympathy, and all you’d need to say in response is something like, “I was so sad to see that. I had a great experience there and think it’s a real loss.”
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my boss killed my plant, CEO wants everyone to donate their pay back to the organization, and more was originally published by Alison Green on Ask a Manager.
I learned something today! "mimosa" in French means served with hard-cooked eggs... much more appealing than my first interpretation of "asparagus mimosa"
I came to the conclusion a while back that there isn’t a vegetable that’s not better roasted. I backtracked a bit, not just because that idea was too many double-negatives in one sentence, but thought that peas probably aren’t better roasted. I haven’t tried them; the idea of tiny peas being reduced to a shriveled bb’s doesn’t sound appealing to me. And while I know a lot of people like to roast radishes, boasting that they’re better than fresh ones, don’t believe them.
Continue Reading Asparagus Mimosa...
I'm so confused, wouldn't this just be, like, hummus? (to be fair I have not clicked thru)
Chickpeas might be one of the most versatile ingredients in the entire world. You can toss them on salads and use them in stews, but you can also make them into pasta and turn them into puffy, Cheetos-esque snack foods. And now chickpeas can also make a sweet, toasty, protein-packed alternative to peanut butter.
Okay guys I am embarrassed that I even clicked through on this BUT now that I have, I have to share because this features this inane sentence: "This pun is funny because it has two meanings."
The most dangerous part of any Target store? The first few square feet. I'm talking about Bullseye's Playground, which I will forever affectionately call the Dollar Spot. No matter how frequently I visit, the section always seems to be full of fun new stuff that I've never seen before. And each item is more enticing than the last. It's all so cute and inexpensive — but it does add up.
I didn't buy anything from this section (because I'm trying to practice restraint — and I was there to shop the new Opalhouse line!). So, while I left with $44 extra dollars in my pocket, I also had some regrets.
Here's what I was eyeing this weekend.
Broad City Is Ending After Season 5 And There Aren't Enough Bed Bath & Beyond Coupons To Drown Our Sorrows
I'm actually okay with this -- don't want it to feel stale
Sad news, queens: Broad City's next season is its last.
the links aren't worth the clikckthrough, it's just LOOK AT THESE FUCKING COOKIES OMG
What are you up to this weekend? Tonight we’re making pizzas at home (the boys requested pineapple!). And, most important, we’re going to the March for Our Lives tomorrow — if you’d like to join, here’s a list of marches around the world.… Read more
#2 is so dumb! "I put something in the trash and now I'm upset that the trash got taken out." What is wrong with this person!?
It’s five answers to five questions. Here we go…
1. My boss suggests hiring her boyfriend for everything
My current supervisor is a real go-getter. In the way that she’s unaware of how many heads she steps on to be validated in her success. And successful she is! She’s roughly 27 and has worked for our Fortune 500 company for the entirety of her professional career, beginning as a waiter in the executive dining suite and progressing quickly through channels to reach her current, significantly elevated position leading the events planning team.
Leaving aside my personal feelings about her management style in general, I’m really struggling on how to approach her about her tendency to suggest using her boyfriend, let’s call him Sam, for a number of tech-related projects for our team. She always suggests this solution when her supervisor is out of the room, thus making her the ranking “person in charge” and always with a tone suggesting the boyfriend could provide this service to our team better and more efficiently than using the existing company-approved channels. In one meeting she even went as far as to say that we should hear what the company tech group has to say, and then “when they fail our expectations” we can bring on Sam and ask for forgiveness when it’s done.
Worth mentioning — I happen to know that Sam, with whom she lives, is currently unemployed and working as a “consultant for a financial thing.” So does everyone else on our staff. I mention this because his employment would have a clear positive effect on her financially as well, given their cohabitation, and it makes it feel extra-sticky inappropriate for the workplace.
In as much as it irritates me that she is influencing our very young staff (I’m only 36 but I feel ancient in this crowd) to believe it’s okay to ignore company policies and procedure in favor of a personal connection — and others are beginning to imitate her behaviors — I also think that this makes her appear very immature and that it’s inappropriate. Is there any way to politely tell her how unseemly these proposals sound?
Agh, yes, that’s really inappropriate.
How does she normally handle opinions that are different from her own? And what kind of relationship do you have with her? If you have decent rapport with her and she doesn’t penalize people who disagree with her, I think there’s a lot of room to say something here.
First, check to see if your company has a conflict-of-interest policy. It probably does, and she’d probably be in violation of it if she gave paid work to her live-in boyfriend.
Then, approach her privately, one-on-one, and say something like this: “Jane, I know you’ve suggested a few times that we could hire Sam to do work for us. I wanted to mention that I think we could get in trouble if we do that. Because he’s your boyfriend, we’d be in violation of the company’s conflict-of-interest policy. I figured you might not realize that.” (The “we” here isn’t strictly accurate, of course; it’s Jane who would get in trouble. But sometimes that formulation can make this kind of thing sound less adversarial, without changing your actual message.)
2. Someone threw out my boots
I have a question about lost property and responsibility for it. When I come into my office, I wear snow boots that I take off and leave in my recycling bin so they don’t get the carpet wet. I have other shoes at my office that I change into. I was under the weather on Wednesday and wasn’t really myself. After I left the office, I realized I had walked out in my office shoes and not the snow boots. I worked remotely the next day since I was still not feeling great, and when I arrived on Friday there was nothing in my recycling bin.
I’m afraid that my boots were thrown away by the cleaning staff, which would be really upsetting — they were expensive and I’ve only had them for a few months. I reached out to the person who manages the property and she also thinks they were probably thrown away. Had I been thinking clearly, I definitely wouldn’t have left them, but I also can’t understand why someone would have thrown them away rather than erring on the side of caution and thinking, “These don’t actually look like garbage.”
The janitorial team is contracted through a vendor and are not employed by my company. Does anyone have an obligation to me here? I just can’t believe that a momentary lapse in memory resulted in my $140 boots being thrown in the garbage.
No, I’m sorry. I totally get why this is upsetting — it sucks! But … well, you left them in the recycling bin, so it’s understandable that the people in charge of emptying recycling bins assumed they were being thrown out. It’s not that different than if you’d put them in your trash can and they’d gotten thrown away. They aren’t expected to double-check that the things in trash and recycling bins are really meant to be there. You could certainly try contacting the janitorial vendor on the off chance that they know anything about the boots, but if they don’t, there’s no standing here to ask anyone to compensate you.
3. How much weight should I put on bad Glassdoor reviews?
I am a college senior, and I landed an interview with a very prestigious company (in a month). When looking through Glassdoor, I started to get really worried about the company culture.
Many people are complaining about the work-life balance, but I think you have a lot of good scripts on how to handle unreasonable requests! What I am more worried about is what one reviewer said is a company culture of subtle racism and sexism. White male researchers supposedly get more complex and exciting work than women and minorities. As I fit into those categories, I’m obviously concerned. Is there a way during the full-day interview to try to suss out if this has changed at all over the last few years? Also, the CEO has a reputation on Glassdoor as screaming at people, being emotionally abusive, reducing even senior staff to tears at meetings, and often switching priorities with no warning so that hours are suddenly crazy.
This place is really prestigious, and obviously I’d really love a job. But I’m really new to the work world, and I’ve only had really great experiences interning. Should these be major red flags? How much weight can I give these Glassdoor reviews?
Yeah, they’re pretty major red flags. If the majority of reviews are positive and it’s a small minority that are negative, it wouldn’t worry me so much. There will always be some people where the culture just wasn’t the right fit. But if you’re seeing multiple people report that the CEO screams, is abusive, and make people cry (and it sounds like you are), I’d take that very seriously. Switching priorities without much warning isn’t great, but it’s not on the same level as verbal abuse and I wouldn’t let that on its own deter you. It’s the rest of the picture that’s an issue.
Can you find anyone in your network who’s connected to someone who works there or has worked there in the past? If so, that person might be able to talk with you confidentially about their experience there.
I’ve also got some advice here about how you can spot problems before you take a job … but candidly, it can be hard to suss that out competently when you’re brand new to the work world, so I’d put a lot of weight on what you’re reading. (And pay attention to the age of those reviews too — how recent are they?)
4. The person who got me an interview just got fired
I’m looking to switch fields, and networked my way into a coffee appointment with a hiring manager who seemed to like me. However, the friend who got me the coffee appointment and subsequent offer of an in-person interview and portfolio presentation just got fired. I’m really not sure what this means for me and the prospects at this company. I only know their side of the story, so I’m trying to work out whether this lead is worth pursuing or whether this will affect my candidacy.
It’s hard to know from the outside! If you and the person who got fired are very good friends and they know that, it could potentially impact their interest in hiring you. (For example, they may worry that you’ve heard a not-very-accurate version of what happened from your friend and that they’d be starting things on a weird foot, and if they have other good candidates, it might be easier for them to just not deal with that.) Or if they were basing their interest in you largely on a glowing recommendation from your friend, and they now don’t trust her judgment, that could have an impact on your candidacy. But in a lot of cases, this wouldn’t impact you — your friend did the work of connecting you, and if you’re a good candidate, they might just proceed with you the way they would in any other case. It’s going to be hard to know until you see how it plays out. I’d just move forward with the interview and see how things go.
5. Running into my interviewer after I interviewed badly
Earlier this year, I applied for a job and didn’t get it; I underprepared for the interview and really wasn’t at my best that day. Now I’m starting an organization in the same very small industry, and I’m very likely to run into the CEO of the company where I didn’t get the job. I’d like to stay on positive terms with her if and when we see each other at the same conferences. Should I be worried that she’ll hold a grudge against me? Should I be doing something preemptively to smooth things over?
It’s very unlikely that she would hold any sort of grudge against you! Sometimes interviews just don’t go well. Interviewers don’t normally take that personally or hold it against the candidate in non-interview contexts. If anything, she may worry that you feel negatively toward her and the company; that’s the more common concern with rejected candidates in a small industry. When you see her, just make a point to be warm, friendly, and normal!
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my boss suggests hiring her boyfriend for everything, someone threw out my boots, and more was originally published by Alison Green on Ask a Manager.
I have a sous vide recipe for this that is EXCELLENT and I've made it several times -- sweet potatoes sous vide get this awesome very meaty texture, whereas roasting them small often dries them out. but either way, highly recommend sweet potato tacos!
omg the first one... i GASPED
It’s four answers to four questions. Here we go…
1. I said something profane to my boss
About a month ago, I got a job at a small company. This is my first job out of college, and my first time working in a fairly informal environment; there is no dress code, and judging by the way my coworkers talk, foul language isn’t just acceptable — it’s the norm.
I’m not used to such relaxed rules, and in a poor attempt to fit in, I made a pretty raunchy comment to one of my supervisors, who was definitely shocked by my choice of words. (I’m totally cringing writing this, but she was warning me about her bluntness with delegating tasks and saying that she hoped I wouldn’t get offended. I told her not to worry, and that “it’s not like I need you to suck my dick every time you tell me to get something done.” Meaning, I don’t need her to do me any favors or soften her delivery when delegating tasks. For the record, I am also a woman, so she knew I couldn’t have meant that literally. I knew I shouldn’t have said that the second it came out of my mouth. Ugh.)
She later told me that another coworker had overheard what I’d said and was surprised/put off that I’d said something like that in the workplace. My supervisor said that she understood that people my age are used to talking in the way that I did (I’m the youngest person in the office, though not by much) but that I shouldn’t say things like that at work.
I apologized for what I’d said and thanked her for telling me, but I’m now afraid of saying the wrong thing again. When boundaries and expectations aren’t clear, how do I ensure that I’m following them? And if a situation like this one happens again, how do I deal with it in a way that shows that I’m sorry and puts it behind me?
Ten years from now, you will find this hilarious. I hope.
But now, yes, you’re mortified! Which … is warranted. But it really can be hard to know exactly where the line is when you’re working in an office that has relaxed a lot of them, as yours has. One thing that might help is to think of swear words as separate from truly raunchy language; you can probably see the difference between “this printer is shit” and what you said.
When your boss talked to you about it, you handled it perfectly: you apologized and thanked her for telling you. That’s exactly what you should do. If you’re corrected about something in the future, you could also add, “I will definitely correct this going forward” or “I’ll make sure I don’t handle it that way again.”
Going forward, I would err on the side of caution — meaning stay toward the very light end of the profanity spectrum, and don’t do it at all around your boss or other people senior to you, even if you hear them doing it themselves. And it wouldn’t be a terrible idea to cut it out entirely; in most places, that wouldn’t stop you from fitting in (although if it would in your office, you could drop in an occasional low-grade swear word if you feel you must) — plus then you won’t be stuck having to re-train your mouth when you move to your next job. (To be clear, some amount of profanity is fine in many offices, but it sounds like yours might be on the extreme end of that.)
2. Should I tell my manager my coworker is in jail?
I have an ethical dilemma. A coworker was arrested two weeks ago. She has been in jail the whole time, because the bail is high and she cannot raise it. I found out about it through another coworker. I was able to find the affidavit for her arrest online, and she will be gone for awhile. She had told my coworker that her ex was “messing with her.” The reality is quite different. She is charged with grand theft, scheme to defraud, cashing checks with intent to defraud, etc.
I am torn about what to do. One thought is that she has been arrested, not convicted, and I should mind my own business. The competing thought is that the affidavit shows a lot of evidence, and she admitted to some of the charges when speaking with the police prior to her arrest. We work in accounting (bad enough), but we also have secret government clearances to allow us to work on certain projects.
The first day that she missed work, her father called our manager and stated that she would be out for a “family emergency.”
It takes around two months to interview and place a qualified candidate. In the meanwhile, her work is being handled by the rest of the department, and the longer this goes on, the more stress and strain it places on already full workloads. The thought of telling … or of not telling … neither feels completely right. Do I have an ethical obligation to tell me employer? Or do I leave it alone, because at some point my manager should terminate her for no call/no show?
I would share with your manager what you learned. But all you need to share is that she appears to be in jail charged with financial crimes. (You don’t need to pass judgment on any evidence the affidavit shows; there are a jury and a judge to do that, so you don’t have to.) You’re not gossiping here; you’re passing on information that’s relevant to your team and to your manager — that she’s in jail and that the crimes she’s accused of are ones with implications for your work and her clearance. Your manager can decide how to handle it from there.
This is going to come out at some point anyway, so you’re not divulging some huge secret that would otherwise be kept (or, given the nature of your work, that should be kept), and it sounds like it would be significantly better for your team if your manager were aware of the situation now.
3. Not labelling an interview an interview
I’m “interviewing” at a very large global company. I’m really excited! My professional network all says it’s a great company and would be a great opportunity, and my own research indicates this as well.
However: they’ve yet to call any of the steps in this process an “interview.” It’s been called: a chat, a conversation, meet the team, etc.
Is this a new strategy in the hiring/recruiting world to put candidates at ease? (It definitely worked for me.) It’s a very large, corporate company, so I don’t *think* it’s part of the culture (I could be wrong because the interviews were very conversational). Are they trying somehow not to lead me on by being so casual about it all? (Like theoretically, they have someone else in mind but are going through the motions with me to fill some applicant/candidate interview quota?)
I’ve treated the process no less formally, but like I said above, I appreciate the terminology because I felt like I was really able to shine and give my best when I thought of it as a conversation and not strictly an interview. If this is a new trend, do you have any resources/articles you could refer me? I tried googling it but nothing really came up.
I’ve occasionally noticed people who do this too! I don’t think a particularly deliberate strategy with specific goals attached to it, but it might reflect a general trend toward less formality in some aspects of work in general. I suspect the people who do it just feel more comfortable with that terminology themselves for some reason, like it somehow lessens the pressure for all involved. And really, it’s perfectly accurate; there’s no reason it must be labeled an interview. (That said, I usually say “interview” because I don’t want to inadvertently signal to the person that it will just be a free-roaming chat, as opposed to a relatively structured conversation with lots of questions coming their way. I want them prepared and not taken off-guard.)
4. Can my employer delay our paychecks for not doing a required training?
I just found out my company is considering holding paychecks if we don’t complete some required training on time. I’ve completed it so I’m not personally worried, but is this legal? I’ve read up on the FLSA but I’m a little confused if the requirement of being paid on the next scheduled payday is for non-exempt employees only, or applies to everyone. We are all (I think) exempt.
No, they can’t do that. Your state law should specify how frequently you must be paid, and I don’t know of any state that makes an exception to those rules for exempt workers. To be sure, here’s a great site that lists employment laws for each state; click on your state and then on “frequency of wage payments.”
You message to your boss could be, “Hey, we’d run afoul of state labor law if we did that. The state requires that we pay people (insert frequency here) and we can get fined if we violate that.” You’re especially well positioned to say this since you’ve already completed the training that he’s threatening people over, so you’re not impacted by his threat.
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I said something profane to my boss, should I tell my manager my coworker is in jail, and more was originally published by Alison Green on Ask a Manager.
ahhhh i love this
Few people love whimsical, clever food packaging more than me, and the design for Good Hair Day Pasta by Nikita Konkin is a real day brightener. Especially the fettuccine box, where voluminous swirls of billowy fettuccini stand in for epic hair. The natural color of the pasta is set off by a sea of white combined with simple lettering. So good.
Nikita has received numerous awards for his design, and it looks like the pasta has gone into production. Available here (if you have access to Amazon.it). It is a 100% durum wheat pasta from Italian grains and produced in the Abruzzo region. The pasta is extruded through brass dies, and dried at low temperature to preserve the fragrance and flavor of the grain.
Continue reading Good Hair Day Pasta's Delightful Packaging...
"The bowl — and rubber mat, if you're using one — has to be washed in hot, soapy water (as hot as you can stand it) every single day. After you've washed it, you need to disinfect your sink (unless you happen to be able to dedicate one sink to just pet things, that is). This step can be as simple as a quick go with a disinfectant wipe. Then, let the bowls air dry — we don't want any cross contamination of towels.
And once a week, it's time for super sanitizing. You can do that with a solution of 1/4 cup bleach to one gallon of water, and a quick soak of up to 10 minutes, or throw the things in the dishwasher on the highest setting (some will have a sanitize option), says the vet."
WHAT IS THIS BULLSHIT, WHO HAS TIME FOR THIS
THEY EAT POOP
How often do you clean your pet's bowls? Are you washing them daily in soapy water as hot as you can stand it, followed by air-drying them, and also sanitizing them once a week? No? Well, according to Dr. Jerry Klein, an emergency and critical care veterinarian in Chicago and chief veterinary officer for the American Kennel Club, it's time to up your pet bowl game.
I feel like TOR is the only place to have an actual safe space conversation about this - trying to talk about this on Facebook would be a disaster. I'm curious how people feel about this.
I'll start... Deep breath: definitely on the NYT op ed side of this and I think this is a public humiliation / character assassination of Aziz Ansari for behavior that I do not think even remotely approaches sexual assault.
I'm shocked that every company doesn't have an official policy banning requests for donations because of this type of BS
A reader writes:
I work in the HR department in payroll for a medium-sized company. My coworker (and his wife) want to have a child. They have already tried the conventional way, drugs, IUI, IVF, and surrogacy with her eggs/his sperm. They have not had success. Adoption OR surrogacy for a non-biological child is not an option for them because they both have past addiction issues and criminal records, although they have since turned their lives around.
They want to try IVF again, but since it was unsuccessful before and multiple doctors have told them his wife will never be able to conceive or carry a child, insurance will no longer cover it. And no doctor will attempt surrogacy again, given the history. They have turned to crowd-funding to raise the money.
Ever since the funding started, my coworker will not stop asking everyone for money. I don’t mean he once casually mentioned the fund and then dropped it. I mean he brings it up multiple times a day, send emails about it, prints copies of the fund page from the internet and hands them out, and flat out asks people for money “so we can make our dreams come true.” Giving money won’t deter him because one of my other coworkers did donate, and he still gets asked and emailed same as the rest of us. It makes everyone uncomfortable because he isn’t taking no for an answer.
Their past fertility struggles are written on the funding page and my coworker mentions them all the time. He even tries to show us paperwork from the doctors to “prove it isn’t a scam and we really are going to use the money for IVF.” I don’t think it is any of my business to know about their past attempts and medical issues, but he discusses them as casually as one would discuss traffic or the weather. He won’t take no for an answer and if anyone asks him to stop he will get upset. He will leave but act like we are personally trying to hurt him. The next day it starts all over again.
He isn’t a manager or supervisor, but he is by far the most senior person here so some people are afraid to speak up because he isn’t a peer. How do we get him to stop? Our boss retired right before the fund started and we are being remotely managed from another location until a new manager is hired and none of us have met our new management because they are largely hands-off. We are in our slow period so it might be a while before a permanent new manager is here. We are all getting sick of this. What would you advise?
Stop worrying about hurting his feelings
He’s being a jerk. He’s not taking no for an answer, and he’s ignored requests to stop. That’s jerk behavior. And yes, it’s stemming from a personal situation that’s presumably difficult and painful, but most people who are dealing with difficult and painful situations do not run roughshod over their coworkers and refuse repeated requests to stop.
So stop worrying about hurting his feelings by telling him to stop. You’re not saying something that’s actually hurtful; you’re making a request that’s beyond reasonable, and that anyone who cared about your feelings would have respected.
I get that it can be tough to push back on someone who’s senior to you at work, but this isn’t about work stuff. This is about personal behavior — very personal behavior — and you do have standing to assert yourself there.
You can start with kindness, but if that doesn’t work, you’ll need to escalate from there. Here’s what that escalation can look like:
The next time he hits you up for money, say this: “You’ve asked me about this a lot. It was fine to ask the first time, but I told you my answer was no, so I don’t want to keep being asked. Thanks for understanding.” If he gets upset and leaves, that’s fine! It’s okay for him to be upset. Don’t be manipulated by that.
If he continues to bring it up with you, then you need to escalate in firmness: “I asked you not to raise this with me again. You’re making me really uncomfortable.” Or simply: “No. Like I’ve already said, don’t ask me again.”
And if he brings it up after that: “Dude, no. I’ve told you multiple times that I’m not open to this. It’s really inappropriate for you to do this at work. If you’re not going to stop, I’m going to escalate this to (manager). Please don’t make me do that.” (And I get that your current manager is remote and hands-off, but this really does sound insanely disruptive and like something you could escalate after a bunch of attempts to deal with it yourself don’t work.)
That’s the professional approach. But frankly, in a lot of offices there would be room for a bunch of you to just yell, “Fergus, STOP ASKING FOR MONEY” the next time he raises it. Sometimes there’s room for social shaming when someone is repeatedly being a jerk.
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my coworker is crowdfunding for IVF and keeps asking everyone for money was originally published by Alison Green on Ask a Manager.
OMG WTF IS THAT LAST ONE
THIS WAS SO CUTE UNTIL THEN
In the comments on last week’s post about working from home with pets, demands were made for a post with photos of pets taking over people’s workspaces. I sent out a call for them, and you delivered, with a ton of photos readers submitted of their pets in their workspaces — mostly home offices, but not entirely. (Click photos to enlarge. And if you’re reading this from the home page, you have to click through to see the photos.)
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guys I would just like to say that I looked at this EXACT RECIPE on seriouseats this morning and suggested to Justin that we make it for Valentine's, WAY BEFORE it was included in this Seriouseats roundup, i'm amazing
Cooking together this Valentine's Day? Here are some projects that were practically made for two. Read More
being too tallaccepts Best Supporting Actor in a Movie/Limited Series for ‘Big Little Lies’ at The 23rd Annual Critics’ Choice Awards | January 11, 2018
oh my god these are horrible! #2!!!!
Over the years, we’ve heard about some really weird job advice and other actions from parents. Some examples:
* “My mom once tried to go into a job interview with me, when I was 23. I told her ABSOLUTELY NOT. (She did a lot of crazy things when I was that age, but I eventually trained her out of the helicoptering.)”
* “My father accused a recruiter that had called me of working for a “fake” company. Apparently she misspelled the name of the company she worked at, and when he googled he was redirected to a porn website. The company was legit, but the recruiter was so offended that never called me again or returned my emails.”
* “My dad told me to wear jeans to a job interview when I was a teenager. Everyone else was in smart trousers, I didn’t get the job, and have never been able to figure out if he genuinely thought this was a good idea or if he didn’t think the job was suitable and didn’t want me to get it…”
* “My dad once insisted on accompanying me to a job interview that turned out to be for Cutco knives. He embarrassed the hell out of me by hovering over me while I filled out the application, loudly yelling about the “inappropriate rap music” that they were playing in reception, and snorting conspicuously throughout the presentation. I practically had to fight him not to come into the one-on-one with me. Of course, they offered me the opportunity, because anyone who needs her dad to go to interviews with her must be a rube. I didn’t take it, of course.” (Okay, this one is pretty awesome.)
So: Did your parents give you weird job advice or otherwise try to interfere in your career in bizarre ways? Or have you heard an outrageous story of that happening to someone else? We want to hear about it in the comments.
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ask the readers: weird job advice your parents gave you was originally published by Alison Green on Ask a Manager.
Fruity and bright ají amarillo pairs with rich coconut milk in this quick weeknight chicken braise. Read More
ooooooh, if this is anything like The Night Manager I'm IN (and even if it's nothing like The Night Manager...)
Alex is set to star in a John le Carré adaptation on the BBC directed by Park Chan-wook!
Emmy award winner Alexander Skarsgård is set to star in The Little Drummer Girl, from The Ink Factory, BBC, and AMC. Production on the Park Chan-wook directed six-part le Carré adaptation begins in early 2018.
The Ink Factory, BBC One and AMC announce that Emmy Award-winner Alexander Skarsgård (Big Little Lies, True Blood, Tarzan) will join Florence Pugh (Lady Macbeth), in Park Chan-wook’s (Old Boy, The Handmaiden, Stoker) television debut The Little Drummer Girl, based on the best-selling novel of the same name by John le Carré.
Production on the six-part mini-series begins early next year, with global sales handled by Endeavor Content/IMG.
Brilliant young actress Charlie (Pugh) strikes up an acquaintance with an intriguing stranger while on holiday in Mykonos - but it rapidly becomes apparent that his intentions are far from romantic. The man is Becker (Skarsgård), an Israeli intelligence officer who entangles her in a complex and high-stakes plot that unfolds as she takes on the role of a lifetime in the ‘theatre of the real’.
Set in the late 1970s, yet sharply contemporary, The Little Drummer Girl weaves a dynamic and exciting story of espionage and international intrigue, of love and betrayal.
Simon and Stephen Cornwell, co-CEOs and Founders of The Ink Factory, say: “The level of expertise and creativity behind this series is unmatched, and we are excited to be gathering a cast of incredible talent to inhabit the brilliant world le Carré has created. Alexander Skarsgård is a captivating actor with great depth and we are delighted to have him join the project.”
Park Chan-wook says: “To play an enigmatic man who hides his true feelings deep inside, I couldn’t think of a more fitting actor. I believe Skarsgård’s growing depth as a great character actor and his soaring energy will elevate The Little Drummer Girl to a high place.”
The series will be financed and produced by The Ink Factory in partnership with 127 Wall and co-producers the BBC and AMC. Laura Hastings-Smith (Howards End, Macbeth and Hunger) will work as Producer, with Simon and Stephen Cornwell serving as Executive Producers alongside John le Carré, Mona Qureshi for the BBC, Joe Tsai and Arthur Wang for 127 Wall, and Wonjo Jeong.
Skarsgård will next be seen starring in Duncan Jones’ Mute opposite Paul Rudd and Justin Theroux; and The Aftermath, starring opposite Keira Knightley. He is currently shooting Hummingbird in Montreal, which he is co-starring in opposite Jesse Eisenberg, with Kim Nguyen directing. Skarsgård was most recently in Jean-Marc Vallée’s award-winning HBO series Big Little Lies, for which he won the Emmy for best supporting actor in a limited series.
Guys this is an all-star list right here ... THOUGH I CAN'T BELIEVE IT'S MISSING THE DOG ALLERGY ONE
Buzzfeed just did a round-up of their 23 favorite Ask a Manager letters. It’s full of classics. You can read it here:
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hundo P would still do
Alexander Skarsgard’s first TV movie, Hunden som log, which made him widely known in Sweden back then in 1989. The movie is about a teenage boy, Jojo (Alexander Skarsgard), who lives in the suburb of Stockholm with his dog, King, who is ill and will soon die. Jojo and his friends try to make Kings’ last time as good as possible. 13-year-old Alex was soooooooooooo cute in this movie!!!! I’m so obsessed with him that I keep watching the movie even though I don’t know a single word in Swedish.
A "spotted-tail quoll" sounds like a Roald Dahl creation....
Halls Gap Zoo recently announced the breeding success of beautiful Spotted-tailed Quolls (or Tiger Quolls). Two healthy joeys, male and female, were born at the Australian facility.
The Zoo credits their dedicated and passionate staff for the successful breeding. The Zoo shared that the team at Halls Gap Zoo works hard to care for many threatened species, whilst sharing their passion for conserving many of the animals Australians are lucky to share their backyards with.
The Tiger Quoll (Dasyurus maculatus) is also known as the Spotted-tailed Quoll. It is a carnivorous marsupial of the Quoll genus Dasyurus and is native to Australia. With males and females weighing around 3.5 and 1.8 kg (7.7 and 4 lbs), respectively, it is mainland Australia's largest carnivorous marsupial, and the world's longest extant carnivorous marsupial (the biggest is the Tasmanian devil). They are found in wet forests of southeastern Australia and Tasmania.
The species is classified as “Near Threatened” on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. The Australian Department of the Environment and Heritage considers the northern subspecies, D. m. gracilis, as “endangered”.
This species is vulnerable to decline because it requires certain climates and habitats, it tends to live in low densities, it is likely to compete with introduced predators and requires lots of space. The biggest threat to the Quoll is habitat destruction. Humans may also directly contribute to Quoll deaths though persecution, motor collisions, and poisoning.
omg guys, if you thought he could still be hot with a mustache, can he still be hot while balding?
News for #TheHummingbirdProject:
Item7 has confirmed that Alexander Skarsgård will be playing Anton in their upcoming film, The Hummingbird Project, which is filming now in Quebec, Canada. They also said, “we started shooting last week, Alexander is great, and yes you are right it is very interesting to see him in this kind of character!”
The above photo (shared 10/24/17) is from @rexdanger and he captioned it ‘Moonrise.’ 😂