Too Many Demands for Your Time? Ask Madeleine

Dear Madeleine, What should I do about all of the requests I get from people who want to “pick my brain” or schedule an informational interview? My friends’ kids are all reaching the age where they are getting serious about having lucrative careers and satisfying jobs, and they’re all following the advice they’re getting to…

Not Sure How to Save a Struggling Employee? Ask Madeleine

Dear Madeleine, I’ve been a manager for over twenty years and I am facing a situation I just can’t handle. I have an employee—my hire—who has always been great, done great work, learned fast, had a positive attitude, and worked well with everyone. A cheery ray of sunshine on the team. About six months ago,…

Thinking the Stress at Work Might Kill You? Ask Madeleine

Dear Madeleine, A couple of years ago I moved from working in the bio/life sciences private sector to a government agency. It was a big adjustment, as you can imagine. Then, nine months ago, my direct supervisor was abruptly let go and I was tapped to be the boss. There was no due process, interviewing,…

Boss Is Making You Afraid? Ask Madeleine

Dear Madeleine, My boss is really tough—I would say borderline abusive. It isn’t just to me. He is awful to everyone. Because of this, I am in a constant state of anxiety and my work has definitely suffered. I was very good at my job but I know the quality has decreased because I have…

Managing a Team That’s in Constant Turmoil? Ask Madeleine

Dear Madeleine, I was recently hired into a manufacturing company in the engineering department. I am leading two different teams. One of the teams is running smoothly, and the other one is a disaster. Disaster team is in constant turmoil— to the degree that some members of team are not even speaking to each other.…