2. Google keeps some fun in mind at one of their offices as employees can literally slide from one floor down to the next. More Google Photos.3. Microsoft employees pull up a seat around this large touchscreen tablet table. More Microsoft Photos.4. Infosys brings games to one of their offices by adding in a bowling alley.More Infosys Photos.5. Box, headquartered in Palo Alto, Calif., has a playful take on seating arrangements as they added swings to their office.More Box Photos.6. Facebook employees can take advantage of a video game room. More Facebook Photos.7. Groupon breaks away from traditional office norms by adding color and modern design to their office. More Groupon Photos.8. Edelman, a multinational public relations company headquartered in Chicago, Ill.,also adds bright colors and modern design elements. More Edelman Photos.9. Autodesk employees collaborate in architecturally interesting spaces. More Autodesk Photos.10. HUMAN Healthy Vending adds comfy chairs that line its reception space. More HUMAN Healthy Vending Photos.What’s your office like? Share your office photos on Glassdoor. While beige office walls may help keep some focused on the work at hand, for others it’s often seen as a blank canvas for fostering creativity. Whether it’s halls decorated like the New York City subway system or a floor-to-ceiling spiraling slide, these 10 companies show how to use and design office space in a whole new way.See which photos employees have shared on Glassdoor that make up our list of 10 offices you wished you worked in:1. Epic, headquartered in Verona, Wis., has designed an office hallway to look like the New York subway. More Epic Photos.
A recent ERE.net article, “Helicopter Parents,” addresses the idea of companies “adjusting … business practices and offerings to meet [millennial generation] expectations.”The conversation around how employers should cultivate an enriching culture that indicates employers are going to mentor, coach and care about the advancement and overall career satisfaction of their employees is valid. This topic is well-covered publicly in the media and privately, behind the scenes.With the transparency of the Internet and social media, journalists, bloggers and others aspire to hold employers accountable for their business operations and human resource practices as well as how they impact the employee and the world at large. While not all companies abide by these methods of employee care, the topic is contemporary and top of mind.Millennials are not the only ones seeking out more employee-friendly environments; all other generations up to, and including, Boomers desire work culture change, too. They seek increased freedom, flexibility, emotional rewards and collegialism.With that said, and with all the talk of culture and work-life balance, are dialogues around what makes a company survive and thrive being diminished? Is discourse about productivity, performance and profits getting lost in the shuffle?Perhaps not. If you search online, you will find hundreds—even thousands—of articles and blog post on this topic.However, the dominance of the employee engagement and culture mantra is pervasive and perhaps is reducing, to some extent, the volume of the employer’s message that says employees also have responsibility to the overall culture process, and as importantly, to bottom line goals.With that, following are five tips for employees to help take accountability in providing value to not only the culture but also to the company’s financial goals. This will help ensure workplace culture plays a part in sustaining future financial goals, enabling you more flexibility and free time to enjoy your life in and out of work.1. Remember to work hard every day. It’s not just about working smart so you can get home, change clothes and go out with friends for happy hour or to volunteer at your favorite charity. It’s not just about the most efficient way to get from A to Z, so you can stop concentrating so vigilantly and pop into Facebook for a status update. It’s not just about feeling good about every task that you perform because you think work should always be fun and/or satisfying.2. Ask your boss for one or two critical areas he or she could use your help beyond your job description. Inquire how you can help with a burning issue, problem, project or task that may help unfurl his tangled sails and get back on the right course. Problem solving is a key trait that employers look for. They not only need it in their staff, but they require it, and even if they don’t say it, it is an implicit need. Don’t ignore their needs.3. Give before you get. Consider your job a netweaving opportunity to give before you get. For example, if you were hired to perform a special function, and you sold yourself in the interview that you are well equipped for such a task, then make sure you give the employer what you promised. This may mean self-training or reaching out to your own personal network for help before burdening your employer with additional training investment right out of the gate.4. Perform in a profitable way. If you are in sales, bolstering the bottom line is easier to define. If your job isn’t directly sales- or profit-driven, you may have to get creative. For example, if you are in an administrative support role and this includes scheduling appointments for your boss, consider how you can more strategically assign his time to enable unbroken periods to work on sales, marketing or new product development initiatives. Or, if you are screening calls, protect your boss from time wasters; time is money, as we all know.5. Prove your value. If you want more flexibility; if you want time away from your regular duties to spearhead social programs on behalf of your company; if you would like your company to invest more in you for advanced training, coaching and mentoring, prove your value first. Work hard and track your accomplishments and then periodically ask your boss to review goals and achievements with you.Provide meaningful, measurable value while making sure your boss looks good and his burdens are eased. By doing so, it will be natural for him to want to support your career goals as well.
Inter Milan coach Luciano Spalletti is ready to get tough with his newly inherited squad.Spalletti won’t tolerate big egos inside the dressing room.“Feel my hands. I have the hands of someone who loves to be in the countryside, tend to plants and feed the animals,” he told the Gazzetta dello Sport.“I have feelings and will try with all my strength to transfer my working method and my convictions to the team. That’s to Inter as a team, not as individuals. Because these players have a lot of quality, but then everyone thinks they’ve done their bit and that doesn’t work as a collective.“Every player feels like they are owed something, whereas they need to worry about giving something. A lot. Anyone who works with me must feel totally convinced.“Those who play here must feel they are Inter, not just a player who is at Inter. Otherwise there’s no point talking about a sense of belonging.“The lads mustn’t think: ‘I am Candreva or Murillo, an Inter player,’ but rather ‘I am Inter!’ You need to always keep in mind the great history of this club.“I will hammer this concept into them in every instant. If they don’t understand what it means to wear the Inter shirt, then we’ll get nowhere.”
The sun sets over Agrium’s currently dormant fertilizer plant on Sept. 29, 2016 in Nikiski, Alaska. The company is working to get the permits it would need from the state were it to reopen the facility.(Photo by Rashah McChesney, Alaska’s Energy Desk – Juneau)The Agrium natural gas-to-fertilizer plant in Nikiski has been taking steps to reopen. If it does, it could add hundreds of high-paying jobs to the struggling Kenai Peninsula economy.But that depends on a reliable natural gas supply, something that’s far from certain.Mark Schaafsma worked in the maintenance department at the fertilizer plant in Nikiski for 32 years.Listen Now And he was one of the last ones to leave after Agrium announced it was decommissioning the plant in 2007. He said it wasn’t easy.“I knew the plant was closing and that my career there was coming to an end, but when the day actually arrived, it took me by surprise how emotionally disruptive it was,” he said.Agrium’s Nikiski plant used natural gas to create fertilizer products. When it closed, it was the second largest producer of ammonia and urea in the U.S. Most of it was sold overseas to markets like South Korea, Mexico and Taiwan.Schaafsma found other work pretty quickly, but the plant’s closure shed hundreds of jobs from the Kenai Peninsula’s economy.“There’s a huge ripple effect. Look what happens in the so-called rust belt in mid-America. A lot of little towns have practically dried up and blown away because of the loss of industry,” he said.After the plant closed, rumors about it reopening started almost immediately.Now, the speculation is bolstered by news that Agrium is seeking a permit to discharge waste from its Nikiski plant.In 2015, the company received air-quality and pollution permits for the plant. All three permits would be required for the plant to reopen.But, there are other barriers. It needs a large, steady supply of natural gas.Agrium’s Manager of Government Relations, Adam Diamond, says the company has been in talks with Cook Inlet producers.“We’re talking volumes that are large volumes. One half of the plant uses 80 million cubic feet of gas a day,” Diamond said.But, there isn’t yet that volume of extra natural gas flowing out of any of the Cook Inlet reserves. Diamond says Cook Inlet’s natural gas discoveries in the last five years are what piqued the company’s interest in restarting the facility.“There’s still, you know, ‘we believe there’s x amount of gas in the ground.’ But that’s very different than, there’s x amount of gas flowing through the pipeline,” Diamond said.The company would also have to spend an estimated $200 million to reopen the facility.To help the process along, House Speaker Mike Chenault, a Republican from the Kenai, ushered a bill through the last legislative session that would give the company a tax break, if it uses gas from a state lease.In its permit application, the company proposes reopening two of its four production lines and hiring about 140 people. If it can land a large enough natural gas supply, it could add another 100 jobs.For Chenault, whose district includes Nikiski, the plant could be a strong economic driver to the area’s battered economy.“When they were running at their peak performance, they were employing about 400 employees. All of them good paying jobs. And all those were local jobs. There wasn’t a week on, week off or two weeks on, two weeks off schedule where you could live outside somewhere else and fly up here,” Chenault said.Those kinds of local jobs are important for industry workers who live in Cook Inlet.Andy Schaafsma watches his dad talk about his time at Agrium’s mothballed Nikiski fertilizer plant on Sept. 29, 2016 in Soldotna, Alaska. Schaafsma, a process technology graduate, says he’d like to work at the plant if it reopens.(Photo by Rashah McChesney, Alaska’s Energy Desk – Juneau)Mark Schaafsma’s son, Andy Schaafsma says a job with Agrium always appealed to him.Instead, he worked for two years as a roustabout on an oil platform. He’d spend a week at home with his wife in Soldotna, then a week at a remote production site on the other side of the Cook Inlet.Both men say the pressure on families can be enormous when oilfield workers spend that much time away from home.“Just the, flipping back and forth between being completely not there and then being there the entire time is, well it takes some getting used to,” Andy Schaafsma said.Currently, Andy Schaafsma works brewing beer in Soldotna, but he says he wouldn’t pass up the right opportunity to work at Agrium.