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Businessman talking to colleagues in meeting (Polka Dot Images/Getty Images/Polka Dot RF)
Businessman talking to colleagues in meeting (Polka Dot Images/Getty Images/Polka Dot RF)

Small Business Reader

How to defend yourself against difficult co-workers Add to ...

Fun facts and information for small business owners and entrepreneurs from across the web, brought to you by Report on Small Business. Find us @GlobeSmallBiz or on our LinkedIn group.

One bad apple can spoil the office

Author Geoffrey James admits that most of the business books he recommends aim to make the world a better place. But in his latest list, like Yoda, he prepares you for battle against the evil Galactic Empire (a.k.a. the sometimes dark underbelly of corporate life). Among the books he names are The No Asshole Rule, which explains how to “avoid, transcend or even utilize these inevitable corporate sphincters,” and 21 Dirty Tricks at Work which exposes the most common ways bosses, co-workers and employees manipulate each other.

More Related to this Story

If dysfunctional colleagues are prevalent at your company, Suzy Welch offers this useful survival guide. Whether self-promoting or lazy or pushy, difficult co-workers can pollute the office environment and sap all the “fun, trust and creativity” out of work, she writes. Unfortunately these people also tend to be very resilient: “Many team destroyers are like workplace Houdinis, escaping damage to their own careers while making everyone else look bad.”

Now for some inspiration

For the past two years, Report on Small Business has showcased spectacular offices across the country. Our mission? To discover just how important physical space is to productivity, the creative process and basic human happiness. If you're planning your dream office or renovating your current space, check out Buzzfeed’s Workspaces of the famously creative, which offers a window into the personal workspaces of creative greats like Virginia Woolf, Jackson Pollock and John Lennon, among others. Short on space? No problem. Lifehacker provide some solid tips for those looking to make the most of tight quarters.

Time-saving ways to Tweet

Though the thought of cramming anything insightful -- let alone legible -- into 140-characters may terrify you, as a business owner you cannot afford not to be on Twitter. Or Facebook. Or LinkedIn. The good news is that it doesn’t have to be time-consuming. In the Guardian's Best Practice Exchange, the communications manager of Orzo Coffee explains how the company devised an efficient 'time-limited' strategy that helped them focus, and gain more control over the content. For back to the basics support, check out this infographic from Twiends.com, which covers everything you need to get started. And Ask Aaron Lee offers this handy guide on what you should tweet and why replies are not optional.

The future is now: Google Glass shipped to first users

Though it's not yet for sale to the general public, so-called ‘Explorers’ who have pre-ordered Google Glass will get a sneak preview very soon. TechCrunch points out that the technical specs are now posted online. The device will be equipped with the following: a display will be equivalent to viewing a 25-inch HD display from eight feet, battery will last a full day, the camera captures 5 megapixel stills and 720p video, there’s 16GB of flash memory, of which 12GB are usable, and it has both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.

The reader is published every Wednesday on the Report on Small Business website. Email suggestions to smallbusiness@globeandmail.com

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