When You Don’t Like Your Coworker

February 25th, 2013


It may be one of the biggest obstacles in life – working closely with someone whom you don’t get along with. It may be a coworker, a supervisor, or a boss. Unfortunately, you can’t just turn the other cheek. You have to address the situation, adapt to it, and make it work. Here are some rules for forging relationship with people you – plain and simple – don’t like:

 1. Keep it to yourself.

There’s no need to create drama at work by gossiping behind someone’s back. It will make things extremely complicated and potentially irreparable if they find out.

2. Break it down.

People might not mesh well at work for many reasons including different communication styles, different work ethics, or general annoyances. Find what exactly is bugging you about this person.

3. Disregard the little stuff.

If you don’t like that your coworker talks about herself too much, talks on the phone too loudly, or smacks her gum, you might be out of luck. Your best bet is to approach your supervisor and ask her to send out a general memo asking everyone to be respectful and considerate of other people’s time and space.

 4. Make an adjustment.

If you realize that the two of you have different communication styles, try to adapt. Approach your coworker with information in a new way that’s more fitting to her style. Write it down if she’s forgetful. Speak more gently if she’s defensive.

 5. Take it face-to-face.

If you have different work ethics, try addressing the situation politely. If your coworker’s late arrivals are placing extra work on your back, try saying, “This morning I had to cover for you until you arrived, and it’s really putting added stress in my day.” Then wait for the apologies to flow.

If the problem persists after you’ve followed these five steps, you may need to take it to a supervisor for guidance. But keep a level head and know that change doesn’t happen overnight.

Talent Testimonial: “I was impressed by ABR”

February 22nd, 2013

ABR regularly receives testimonials and letters of thanks from our Talent. We recently received the following from Dawn Smack:

After nearly two months of searching for a living-wage job without success, I decided to try a temp agency for the first time.  I was very skeptical of being able to find what I was looking for there.  I tried a couple agencies, then decided to work with ABR Employment Services.  I was impressed first with the professional customer service that I observed all the customers receive who walked in while I was either waiting for an appointment, or completing paperwork.  I was amazed when, after only a couple weeks, ABR called and told me about a position that they thought would be a good fit. ABR followed up with me throughout the interviewing, hiring and initial employment period.  I am now hired on by the employer who interviewed me, happy in my job, and thankful that I decided to try ABR Employment Services.

– Dawn Smack

Tips to Increase Employee Retention

February 18th, 2013

No company has a 100 percent retention rate. It’s impossible. Yet, the average cost to hire and train a new employee is $57,698 per person! A constant revolving door of employees wrecks havoc on a company’s bottom line. That’s why hiring the “right” people from the get go is critical.

But hiring the right people is easier said than done. (P.S. ABR can help you with that.) From there, it’s worth recognizing that each employee may be motivated by something different. There isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. But we do have some ideas for your organization to consider:

1. Offer Some Perks

More importantly, offer something that fits your employee’s needs. Something as small as “Donut Wednesdays” or discounts to a local gym can improve morale. If you can offer something that saves your employees time, or reduces stress, even better! Try partnering with a local maintenance shop that will offer oil changes in the parking lot. Or enlist a local traveling masseur and offer 15 minute lunchtime chair massages. Get creative. Consult your local chamber of commerce website for more perk ideas.

2. Promote from Within

Employees stay when they see a future. And they’ll be much more likely to see a future if they see their coworkers and bosses climbing up the ladder. When hard work and dedication is rewarded – and there’s a visible payoff – others will want to put in their time and follow suit. Ask bosses to discuss and revisit their employee’s long-term career plan twice a year.

Foster Open Communication

When your employees know they can be heard, they will feel respected and wanted. Whether it’s a comment box, a bi-monthly meeting, or an open-door policy, encourage your employees to speak their mind. Ask them to suggest solutions to their problem and don’t let these inquiries go unanswered.

Create Contests and Incentives

Everyone loves a little competition. Reward the highest performer in your sales force or the department that brings in the most canned goods for charity over the holidays. Or create quarterly goals for individuals or teams. The incentives don’t have to be large – simply working toward them is part of the fun. A free lunch – heck, even a free coffee – can motivate someone to succeed.

Consider Employee Development

Think about offering on-site classes that can further your employee’s careers. That includes anything from technical skills that are directly relevant to their position to communication workshops that are applicable to both work and home life. When you’re willing to invest in your employees, your employees know you care.

Empower Your Employees

You want your employees to succeed, but you also want them to learn. So don’t be afraid to switch up mundane work with something more difficult. If a worker is challenged – maybe even with an assignment slightly above their ability level – they’ll be pushed out of their comfort zone. It may be scary for the both of you, but your employee will further develop his abilities, which helps the both of you in the long run.

See our ‘Employee Retention Tips‘ board on Pinterest and read our other pieces on how to encourage productivity in the workplace and employee happiness.

What does your organization do to help retain employees? Submit your comment below.

 About ABR

ABR Employment Services provides employment opportunities to job seekers and staffing solutions to employers throughout Wisconsin. ABR provides temporary, try-before-hire and direct hire job opportunities in: customer service, data entry, receptionist, office assistant, administrative assistant, assembly, packaging, machine operator, warehouse, janitorial, CNC, welder, forklift, maintenance, and call center. Connect with us on Facebook or LinkedIn for job seeking tips and advice. Have an overlooked job search resource to share? Tell us about a job hunt resource you used successfully below.


ABR Makes 2013 Best of Staffing™ Lists

February 11th, 2013

2013_BOS_Talent 2013_BOS_Client


ABR Employment Services announced today it has been named to Inavero’s 2013 Best of Staffing™ lists of award winners.  Presented in partnership with CareerBuilder, the fourth annual Best of Staffing lists provide the only statistically valid, objective, service quality benchmarks in the industry and reveal which staffing agencies are delivering exceptional service to their clients and the permanent and temporary employees for whom they find jobs. This year’s lists highlight a growing divide among the industry’s leaders and laggards, and identifies ABR Employment Services as one of the best staffing agencies for companies and job candidates to call when they are in need.

Utilizing the Net Promoter® methodology, the 2013 Best of Staffing winners achieved satisfaction scores more than double the industry average. This stark contrast in scores is a clear indication that the firms who have earned their way onto the 2013 Best of Staffing lists truly stand out for their service quality. ABR Employment Services received satisfaction ratings of 9 or 10 out of 10 from 70.2 percent of their permanent and temporary employees, significantly higher than the industry’s average of 48 percent. ABR also received satisfaction ratings of 9 or 10 out of 10 from 70.5 percent of their clients, significantly higher than the industry’s average of 39 percent.

Less than 1% of staffing firms in North America have been named to the Best of Staffing Lists for Client and Talent Satisfaction,” Jim McNett, CEO, said. “We are proud and honored to be recognized for our efforts in this way.”

“Staffing agencies have proven to successfully connect companies with permanent and temporary employees”, said Inavero Founder and CEO, Eric Gregg. “Since the end of the recession, the staffing and recruiting industry has created more jobs than any other single industry in the country**, yet so many companies and job candidates don’t take advantage of this expertise and resource.”

About ABR & Inavero

Founded in 1987, ABR Employment Services (www.abrjobs.com) provides administrative, call center, light industrial and skilled industrial employment opportunities to Talent and Workforce Solutions to companies throughout Wisconsin.  ABR is a 2013 Best of Staffing Talent and Best of Staffing Client company.

Inavero administers more staffing agency client and talent satisfaction surveys than any other firm in the world.  Inavero’s Best of Staffing™ is the nation’s only award that recognizes staffing agencies that receive remarkable reviews from their clients and the people they help find jobs (employed talent).  The Best of Staffing winner lists are a central place that businesses and talent go to find the best staffing agencies to call when they are in need.

®Net Promoter, NPS, and Net Promoter Score are trademarks of Satmetrix Systems, Inc., Bain & Company, and Fred Reichheld.

**Bureau of Labor Statistic

Interview Preparation: The 5-Step Checklist | ABR

February 11th, 2013

You’ve made it over the first hurdle: landing the interview. But now the next hurdle – the interview itself – is fast approaching. There’s a lot on your mind during this time including where to go, what to wear, and what to say. One misstep can really take you off track and stress you out. (Learn how to fix an interview faux pas just in case.) Go over this checklist a couple nights before your next interview, and you’ll feel as confident as can be when you walk in the door.

Step 1: Bring Extra copies of your resume

You never know when an interview might include conversations with multiple people. Those people might not be as prepared as you are and may need to see a copy of your resume upon meeting you. It is also nice to have your resume in front of you to make sure you cover all aspects of your work history.

Step 2: Bring A pen and paper

Bring a notebook or pad of paper. Or your electronic tablet if you’re lucky enough to have one. Inside, include a list of pre-written questions you’d like to ask the interviewer. These should be well thought out inquiries as well as logistical queries, like how much vacation days you would receive.

Step 3: Prepare An Answer to “So tell me about yourself?”

Read our post on how to best answer this inquiry. It’s about developing a story that outlines why you are a perfect fit for this position at this company. You should practice your response and have it memorized.

Step 4: Practice An Answer to “What do you know about our company?”

Read our post on how to answer this often-asked question. It offers tips on how to thoroughly research a company before stepping in the door. You don’t want to overlook this step.

Step 5: Choose An Appropriate Interview Outfit

If you’re worried that your outfit isn’t dressy enough, it probably isn’t. Overdressed is always best. Most importantly, make sure your outfit is tailored, pressed, and clean. And be sure it’s easy to walk around in and sit in.

Read more interview tips like how to stand out in an interview and what not to say when asked these four interview questions.

About ABR

ABR Employment Services provides employment opportunities to job seekers and staffing solutions to employers throughout Wisconsin. ABR provides temporary, try-before-hire and direct hire job opportunities in: customer service, data entry, receptionist, office assistant, administrative assistant, assembly, packaging, machine operator, warehouse, janitorial, CNC, welder, forklift, maintenance, and call center. Connect with us on Facebook or LinkedIn for job seeking tips and advice. Have an overlooked job search resource to share? Tell us about a job hunt resource you used successfully below.

Decoding the “How Should I Dress for Work?” Dilemma

February 4th, 2013

Even if you’re not into fashion, it will cross your mind at least once during your career – especially when it comes to appropriate interview attire and first day on the job dress. We’re going to answer a few of your questions and provide you with some visuals and tips that will put even the most fashion-challenged at ease.

Q) I’m interviewing for a job, but I know everyone at this company is really casual. What should I wear?

A) Regardless of how casual the company dress code is, you still have to dress up for an interview. It shows your professionalism and the seriousness you’re placing on this potential job opportunity. If you’d like to dress down a bit, men can forgo the suit jacket and woman can replace high heels with tasteful flats (but make sure your toes are covered).  See our interview dress tips for women and interview dress tips for men boards on Pinterest.

Q) It’s my first day on the job and it’s the hottest day of summer. What can I get away with?

A) Not much. Even if there is no official dress code at work, think twice before slipping into a tank top, shorts and flip-flops. It’s just not appropriate for the work place even in hot weather.

Q) The dress code is “business casual.” What does that even mean?

A) There’s no clear answer to this. Your best bet is to weigh whatever information the human resource department or staffing agency provided you with. Many times that information can be found in the employee handbook.  On your first day, make a point to notice what your co-workers are wearing and try to copy that.  Err on the dressier side. As they say, “Dress for the job you want, not the job you have.”