Real Estate Sales: On Your Own At Last

Business / At Work /

Q: I am an intelligent 50-year-old woman, fluent in four languages. I have always worked for someone else, but I think at my age now I'd be safer working for myself. I began the state-approved real estate course but I don't know if I should continue. It requires a lot of work and I am getting nervous about whether I can do it.

A: Successful ...Read more

Employer Retaliation: Is a Lawsuit Worth It?

Business / At Work /

For the last 9 months, my boss has retaliated against me. I had asked for a simple accommodation due to severe back problems, in which he denied even though I provided a doctor's letter. I am a registered nurse and represented by a union. I work for a large company with 21,000 employees nationwide. This ongoing harassment, retaliation and ...Read more

Bad Business Etiquette Loses Interview

Business / At Work /

Q: A company called to schedule an interview with me and I accepted the time. Something came up last minute, so I called to change the time. I got the person's voice mail so I kind of left a long message explaining I wanted to change the interview time and I apologized several times. I got a call back that day that it could not be rescheduled ...Read more

Co-Workers: Friend or Future Foe?

Business / At Work /

Q: I cannot decide whether my co-worker is just very friendly, or too friendly. When I started the job, she was openly helpful, telling me whenever she had extra time to train me if I needed help with anything. I accepted her offers to help because the company had no formal training. I was hired on my past experience, but sometimes I was "...Read more

Is Same Pay Fair For Star Employee?

Business / At Work /

Q: I was hired as an administrative assistant at a small nonprofit. I like working in a "do-good" culture where we are supposed to take a team approach to almost every project. I'm efficient and good at developing new ways for getting things done. I also like being able to take on whatever project we have at the time.

I've been there a year ...Read more

Was Your Education A Waste Of Time?

Business / At Work /

Q: I did very well during my time in the U.S. Army, but after fulfilling my commitment and receiving my bachelor's and master's degrees in business, I returned to my small hometown. I know small town salaries can't compete with those in the bigger cities, but I wanted an immediate job, so I took one at minimum wage. I am at a company where the ...Read more

Sabbatical or Career Break?

Business / At Work /

Q: I worked for seven years in the chemical industry. I had a chance to travel so I left my job and ended up taking about three years off. I'm trying to get back into the job market, but I've gotten negative responses; I'm not sure whether it's due to my reason for taking off or the actual amount of time taken. I think most people would have ...Read more

Focus First on Family and Job

Business / At Work /

Q. I'm a 33-year-old woman who was recently made manager of a small financial firm. I'm very capable, efficient and fair. After 6 months, my skeptical, mostly older and mostly male staff members have come to respect me. I'm pretty and have had to put up with ogling and even crushes, but I was determined to be a successful boss, and I succeeded. ...Read more

Reigniting Lost Passion Is Possible

Business / At Work /

Q: A friend and I were talking about what we had thought we wanted to be when we were in high school. Her goal was to be a history teacher, so she got her bachelor's and master's degrees, began teaching history and loved her decision. I, on the other hand, wanted to be an actress, had auditioned for plays in high school and was told I was good...Read more

Invest Time in School Over Job You Don't Want

Business / At Work /

Q: I am a full-time nursing student, and I work full-time as a caregiver at a senior assisted-living facility. I am married with no children. My husband has been very helpful with chores at home so I can go to school, but I still don't have enough time for homework. I'm in my last year and my classes require more homework now. The only way I'm...Read more

Home Office Worker Alone Faces Stalker

Business / At Work /

Q: I am a female, independent sales rep whose apartment is my only office. It took time to find the perfect location -- one with a lot of natural light, is quite and peaceful and convenient to my company's warehouse. I love my job and my company, and often work seven days a week. That's why what has happened is so upsetting.

One of my female ...Read more

Nonsmoker Ends What Smoker Begins

Business / At Work /

Q: I work in an elevator building that is home to many companies. When the smokers need a cigarette, they have to leave the building to smoke. The sign at the entrance states that smokers must stand at least 15 feet away from the entrance. It never fails; there are always smokers who refuse to do this. That means nonsmokers have to hold their ...Read more

Pros and Cons of Working for a Foreign Company

Business / At Work /

Q: My friend works for a Japanese-owned company. He said he doesn't get paid sick time, and if he misses a day, he must bring a doctor's note when and it will still be up to the manager whether it will be accepted. I thought companies had to offer paid sick days.

I have another friend who works for a German-owned company and loves it. She ...Read more


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