Get Ahead By Practicing These ‘Top Employee’ Habits

Maybe you’ll win the lottery. Or a wealthy relative will leave you a fortune.

But if neither possibility turns into reality, you’ll have to go to work tomorrow, where your best chance of getting ahead is to be the best employee you can.

Here’s some advice for making an impact at work:

Be positive
Managers and co-workers like working with people who are upbeat and enthusiastic.

You don’t have to force a fake smile on your face every minute of the day, but refrain from complaints, cynicism, and sarcasm at work. Support what’s working, and fix what needs to work better.

The ability to express your ideas clearly is one of the most important skills you can master.

Concentrate on getting your messages across in concrete, concise language that everyone can understand without confusion.

Compliment people
Tell people sincerely when you appreciate their work, their assistance, or their support.

Highlight their tangible achievements, connect your praise to your organization’s goals, and don’t overdo it. Everyone, including your supervisor, likes to hear, “Thank you,” or, “Good work.”

Be honest
Admit your mistakes, and ask openly about things you don’t understand.

“Fake it till you make it,” has a place in your career strategy, but in the long run you’ll do better by being up front with your supervisors and colleagues.

Keep learning
Don’t rely too long on what’s worked for you in the past. A commitment to your own development shows that you’re serious about your career, and gets the attention of managers looking for tomorrow’s leaders.

Avoid Vexing Your Boss With These Workplace Fouls

You don’t have to be a toady to get ahead at work, but staying on your boss’s good side is a positive strategy. Smart employees do their best to steer clear of these management pet peeves:

• Tardiness/excessive absenteeism. Managers can’t make plans if they don’t know when—or if—you’re going to show up for work. Do your best to be on time and stay healthy.

• Procrastination. Don’t waste time. Managers depend on you to get timely results, not make excuses for lateness. If you run into a problem, tell your manager right away so he or she can plan accordingly.

• Drama. This can include gossip, turf battles, and constant sniping between employees. Stay focused on getting your job done in a professional manner no matter what personal issues might intrude.

• Dishonesty. If a manager can’t trust you to tell the truth, your whole working relationship is likely to crash and burn. Tell your boss what’s going on, even if it’s bad news. A good manager will appreciate your truthfulness.

• Insubordination. Few managers will tolerate an employee who openly challenges him or her for very long. Learn the difference between raising issues and making trouble. Even when you disagree with your manager, do it with tact.

• Negativity. An employee who’s constantly complaining, or always pointing out the down side of every decision, isn’t helping his or her boss. You don’t have to put on a Pollyanna act, but do your best to be positive about what’s happening in your workplace to show your boss that you’re a team player and that you can get along well with coworkers.

The Internet: Employees Are Wasting Your Money

By Tech Experts Staff
With today’s tight budgets every business is making cuts in some fashion. One interesting fact is that, in the United States, businesses waste some $760 billion every year on unproductive payroll.

If companies could find a way to cut back on this waste, then they would not need to cut as much elsewhere.

What do employees do to waste almost a trillion dollars a year? According to numerous studies, employees waste an average of just over two hours per day on unproductive or non-work related activities.

If you take that average and multiply it across your workforce, how much money could you be saving if you knew how? Fortunately we can help!

Internet Abuse Costly
While we don’t have a way to solve all of your company’s time wasting issues, we do have several solutions for the number one time waster by employees: Internet abuse.

Internet usage is the cause of nearly 50% of wasted time in the workplace! That adds up to 364 hours of wasted time per employee per year.

This is an incredibly easy fix, technically, and there are numerous prevention measures you can implement.

Acceptable Use Policy
The first prevention measure to help to prevent misuse of company time: Let your employees know what is – and is not – acceptable on your company network.

While most employees know that being online and goofing off is not right, if they haven’t been told they tend to not think twice. Implement a comprehensive acceptable use policy in your employee handbook.

Employees should be told what is acceptable and what consequences are in place should the acceptable use policy be breached.

Implement Filtering
The second way to keep employees from misusing the company network is to have proper measures in place to prevent unauthoroized use.

Most higher end routers have the ability to add websites to a filter and block them. This is a great way to prevent employees from having access to unauthorized or unnecessary websites.

If you don’t mind employees having access to websites such as Facebook during certain hours of the day, say lunch for example, then a policy can be put in place to allow access to these websites only during the specified hours.

While we don’t recommend access to websites such as Facebook on company networks, due to the possibility of easily accessing infected websites, ads, or popups, there are some companies that allow this.

Some companies have smaller networks where it is harder to justify the cost of a high end router, but still want to be able to control their employee’s network use.

For companies like this, there are other options. For example, there are some DNS providers that specialize in blocking non-work access. You simply point your router to the service to block the websites you don’t want employees to have access to.

One other option for those on a tight budget is to manually block websites by turning on the content advisor within each computers Internet settings and allowing only those specific sites an employee needs to complete their work.

Monitor Compliance
The final step is to have some sort of monitoring system in place and let your employees know it is being checked. Letting your employees know their usage is being tracked and monitored is generally an effective deterrent.

There are many different monitoring systems that can be installed on a user’s workstation and that run silently in the background. These systems can monitor everything on a user’s computers from keystrokes to taking screen shots of a user’s computer.

If you would like to speak with us on steps to improve your businesses productivity and cut down on wasted time give us a call. No matter what the size of your business, there are steps that can be put in place to help combat this rampant problem.

Do You Want To Be Able To Work From Home? Here’s What You Need To Know!

There’s a hot business trend that’s become even MORE popular with the rising gas prices: telecommuting.

Whether you call it “working from home,” or your “virtual office,” the idea is the same: Your network is configured to give you and your staff the ability to work from some location other than the office.

While most business owners and managers pulling 60+ hour work -weeks love the idea, they often fear that employees working from home won’t be as productive, or won’t take their job seriously, but this fear is on the decline.

The International Telework Association & Council (ITAC, reports that the number of workers who telecommute at least once a week has topped 23 million and is continuing to grow.

While telecommuting will not work in every situation, there is no doubt that technology has made working from home extremely practical whether a few times a month or every week.

Offering Work From Home Options Makes Your Company More Competitive
As a matter of fact, offering work-from-home options can give you a competitive advantage in attracting and retaining the best employees:

• Employees who are sick can continue to work without infecting the office or losing an entire work day.
• Employees forced to stay home to take care of sick family members can continue to work instead of taking off long periods.
• Inclement weather or heavily congested traffic won’t shut down your office.
• Key managers with a heavy workload will actually be more productive if given the ability to work from home on evenings and weekends.
• Allowing employees flexibility during peak workloads (e.g. CPAs during tax season) makes employees happier to put in the extra hours from a home office.
• Employees with temporary or permanent disabilities can continue to be fully functional in a home environment.

Telecommuting Improves Employee Productivity And Retention
ITAC reports that enabling key employees the ability to work from home actually increases their productivity, leads to fewer sick days, and a better work/life balance which in turn, reduces turnover. After all, an employee who is given the benefit of working from home will often pass up higher paying job offers that will require them to be in an office 40 hours a week.

For the business, telecommuting saves on rent and utilities and can help avoid the heavy expense of renting additional office space or moving to larger locations.

Most business owners will test a “work from home” program by only giving themselves and a few key managers the ability to work from home. Often, this is for after-hours access. Once the technology is set up and tested, a few additional key staff can be permitted to work from home on special occasions, while traveling, sick, or otherwise unable to come in.

The Ultimate Small Business Owners Guide To Setting Up A ‘Work From Home’ Program Or Remote Network Access

If you are thinking about investing in the technology to allow your staff to work from home or a remote location—DON’T—at least not until you read this informative new report.

To secure your free copy, go to:
or, call the office at (734) 457-5000.

Tracking Down “Bandwith Hogs” – Should You Monitor Employee Internet?

For many businesses, tracking employees use of software and the Internet is an absolute necessity for employers who are juggling productivity with employee privacy while trying to remain competitive in an increasingly fierce market.

Many computer professionals consider the problem to be crucial in today’s market.

What do you do if you’re an employer, and you want to retain your employees? You must keep salaries high, or they will go else-where. But you also can’t raise your prices, or you will be outpriced by competitors.

The answer is to increase productivity. You look around the office but don’t see people wandering the halls or talking at the water cooler. Everyone’s at their computers. The question is, what are they doing at their computers?

There is much anecdotal evidence that demonstrates the growth of personal use of computers during business hours, and there are many programs that track the URLs that employees visit, how much time they spend online, and the amount of bandwidth that Internet use is taking up.

They also allow employers to monitor which non-Internet programs employees use.

Programs like these gives employers a snapshot to show how much activity is spent on non-administrative activity.

Some critics see monitoring of employee Internet use as something of an invasion of privacy, but workplace security experts disagree. These programs can tell that an employee is spending four hours a day on eBay, but won’t disclose the actual activity on it.

It can tell if someone is consistently downloading unusually large files, but doesn’t disclose the contents of the individual’s e-mail.

Many monitoring programs also can tell if employees are spending large amounts of time playing Elf Bowling or Tetris instead of working, and whether more official programs that the company has purchased are being used. If they’re not, then further purchases may be a waste of money.

The primary purpose of the software is not to penalize employees for “unofficial” Internet use but rather to pinpoint problem areas in weak-performing employees and to locate “bandwidth hogs” whose overuse of the Internet slows down everyone’s work.

Tech Experts offers several solutions to filter, monitor and report on Internet use on a company’s network.

Call us today at (734) 457-5000 (toll free 888-457-5001) for more informataion.

Time Awasting? It Could Be Worse Than You Know

The ‘work’ day is supposed to be about 8.5 hours, with either a half or a full hour for lunch. That’s the expectation. With any small business every hour of that day is key to business.

So what would you do if you discovered your small staff or employees were whittling away at least an hour or two hours doing something other than work?

One to two hours a day equals five to 10 hours a week–with a small staff that could translate to a full week of workable hours down the drain.

Yet that’s what’s happening in business today. According to a recent InformationWeek article, workers are still spending too much time on other things such as:

Using the Internet for personal reasons, socializing with co-workers, conducting personal business and running errands on company time.

Software now exists which can monitor employee usage of the Internet, and report on activity such as browsing personal sites, downloading inappropriate content, and using email or instant messenger services for personal use.

You won’t believe what they’re doing at work!

Survey Of Over 400 IT Managers Reveals What Employees Are Really Doing During Work Hours… And You Won’t Believe What They Discovered!

According to a survey conducted by 8e6 Technologies (, employees are using company computers, Internet access, email, and other resources to conduct hours of non-work related activities.

Some of these activities simply waste time, like day trading and monitoring eBay bids.

However, many of the activities are downright malicious and threaten their employers’ existence and security.

Just look at some of these outrageous real-life stories collected from IT Managers polled:

  • One employee was caught running a gambling website and acting as a bookie for his coworkers.
  • To bypass the company’s web filter, one employee was caught using his desktop computer as an FTP server for the other employees. He had downloaded and saved over 300 GB of material.
  • One employee was busted for giving away confidential information such as price lists, contracts, and software code for application development.
  • Another employee was busted for having a side business stealing and selling company inventory on eBay.
  • One woman was caught running an online outcall service from her desk.
  • One employee was caught renting the corporate IP address to hacker friends to generate DOS (denial of service hacker) attacks.

While these scenarios seem outrageous, they are not uncommon. According to a survey outlined in the Seattle Times, of 294 U.S. firms with 1,000 or more employees, almost one-third of companies have fired an employee in the last 12 months for violating email policies, and 52 percent of companies said they have disciplined an employee for violating email rules in the past year.

As an employer, educating your employees as to what they can and cannot do through an acceptable use policy is simply not enough.

If the requirements are not enforced, employees will accidentally (or intentionally) violate your rules. That’s why every company should look at investing in a good email and web filtering system.

Just having it in place will act as a deterrent for such activities, and if something really is going on — like an employee leaking confidential information to a competitor or sending racial or sexist jokes through your company’s email —you’ll be able to nip it in the bud before it comes back and bites you in the form of a lawsuit.

Additionally, a good web filter will prevent employees from accessing inappropriate material online, wasting time on non-work related activities, downloading viruses and spyware, and using up company bandwidth to download photos and music.

Software such as Spectorsoft monitor employee Internet usage, accumulating statistics about how much time is spent on certain web pages, logging sites visited, and can block sites based on keywords, addresses, or time of day.

If you would like our help in choosing and setting up an acceptable use policy and a web filtering system for your company, call us at: (734) 457-5000 or send an email message to at