Questions tagged [professionalism]

Questions referring to how one presents themselves and interacts with others in a professional environment

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505 votes
21 answers
130k views

Is it rude to leave an interview early if you have already made your decision?

A friend of mine went on an interview recently for a software developer position at a well known company. It was a senior position, and he had very relevant business experience in the industry. I ...
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399 votes
9 answers
70k views

Can I talk to my rubber duck at work?

I have noticed I have had great success using another co-worker as a metaphorical rubber duck (sometimes intentionally, sometimes unintentionally). It improves my productivity vastly. However, I know ...
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347 votes
17 answers
56k views

How do I deal with the "30 minutes remaining" problem?

As a developer, I often get to this point where at the end of the day I finish a big task and still have approximately 30 minutes to go. The problem is that 30 minutes are not enough time for me to ...
  • 6,373
298 votes
17 answers
42k views

Was it really unprofessional of me to leave without asking for a raise first?

I've just given notice to my current job for a new position which offered near triple my current salary ($37k as a software engineer). I knew that I was underpaid when I took the job but as a previous ...
user avatar
287 votes
12 answers
54k views

Coworker is easily and often offended and doesn't want us to mention offensive topics like facial hair

We have an employee who seems to be easily offended by non-offensive things. The latest example is that we should not talk about how facial hair makes someone look different because this person is ...
255 votes
15 answers
49k views

Does using documentation as a developer make me look unprofessional?

I’m a junior developer and working every other three months in a software development company as part of my corporate studies. Even though I’ve been programming for almost 1 year (3 x 3 months work ...
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239 votes
6 answers
37k views

Is it reasonable to expect overtime from unpaid interns?

I am a unpaid intern at a tech company and several weeks ago I had my first performance evaluation. While my manager told me that the code I had been submitting was excellent and that my work was more ...
  • 1,411
216 votes
10 answers
38k views

My employer is forcing its employees to defraud its customers, how should I handle this situation?

Right now I have a really uncomfortable situation and not sure what's the best way to handle it. I am working as a software developer for an outsourcing company based in Eastern Europe. Most of its ...
  • 1,021
214 votes
22 answers
46k views

How to handle interns' unprofessional behavior?

I am a software developer in a small company (a few dozen employees). We have a summer internship going on. The interns are college students with no professional experience and with rather basic ...
  • 2,695
212 votes
9 answers
27k views

Should a new employee be disciplined for not recognising a superior? [closed]

I work as a senior developer in a small/medium UK-based company with multiple offices. Rarely do personnel go between the different offices. Our office has a publicly accessible reception area but the ...
user avatar
207 votes
12 answers
32k views

Is it inappropriate to help an employee outside of work?

I have been known to be a compassionate person. Sometimes it overflows into my work. I'm a regular manager at a restaurant (nothing too important, just running shifts, blah blah blah), who has mostly ...
  • 1,269
207 votes
17 answers
40k views

How to deal with a coworker that writes software to give him job security instead of solving problems?

I have a coworker that primarily develops programs for internal use in the company. They design their programs in such a way that they progressively consolidate their position within the company so ...
  • 1,508
206 votes
17 answers
39k views

I just found out that my recent promotion comes with an unexpected 24/7/365 on-call status

I work in IT and was recently promoted to a higher position. While I was okay with the responsibilities outlined when I accepted the promotion last week, today I learned that it comes with 24/7/365 on-...
190 votes
19 answers
42k views

How to talk to management about 'genius' code?

EDIT: Thanks everyone for the great advice, comments, and feedback. As it turns out, no one was the “bad guy” in this situation. The advice I received here helped me to get back in contact with the ...
185 votes
13 answers
40k views

Is it ethical to use knowledge in main job for side gig?

Suppose I have a main job (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm) that involves lots of computer programming, and one day I build a recommender system for my company (think of Amazon.com making recommendations)...
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182 votes
9 answers
16k views

How can I increase focus when doing something boring?

I'm a senior software dev at a contractor company. The issue I'm asking about goes as follows: When I program or debug or do something I like, I'm super-fast. I'm fast enough that I do tasks in 50% ...
180 votes
14 answers
38k views

How do I deal with an autistic employee who criticizes teammates publicly and doesn't understand the harm in doing so?

I have a very autistic person in my team who quite often criticizes his teammates in public emails, causing lots of complaints. We are in a Nordic country and it is not very common to fire people ...
  • 2,723
177 votes
15 answers
58k views

How can I deal with troublesome Professional Engineer?

I currently manage a team of quite a few engineers in Canada. Things normally run smoothly, but we've had a serious problem with a senior engineer as of late. This engineer is the sole engineer on ...
user avatar
177 votes
12 answers
32k views

How to negotiate salary with an extremely unprofessional in-house recruiter?

I'm interviewing at a certain programming job. I've passed everything, the people doing the interview say they really like my skills and want me to join the team, everything's looking great, the ...
  • 1,297
176 votes
13 answers
37k views

Should I charge my client the agreed amount for the difficult tasks that I have solved by accident within few minutes?

It was fixed-price contract to develop Python scraper to scrape 2 websites. I always charge ~$200 per website. We agreed $200 per website. I agreed $200 blindly without analyzing those websites ...
  • 1,634
174 votes
11 answers
47k views

How do we evaluate a candidate who would not speak to any women during the interview process?

In our small company with a few employees, everyone's input is important. We call each candidate in for two interviews, one with the owners and another with the Head Developer and a team member who ...
172 votes
10 answers
46k views

My manager told me to stop helping a (supposedly) underperforming coworker. What are my options?

A bit of background I'm a junior female developer working for a telecommunications company. Shortly after I started, another young woman joined the team. Our manager sat us together with the ...
168 votes
5 answers
24k views

How do I coordinate the process of pursuing multiple job opportunities at the same time?

In the hot field of software engineering, a competent programmer wanting to switch jobs will be able to apply and interview easily for at least a half dozen jobs. However, coordinating the speed at ...
  • 3,431
167 votes
13 answers
20k views

How do I keep myself motivated when working alone/at home?

I am working as a data scientist in a multi-country company. There are only 4 of us located in my particular country. The other 3 are often on the road, meaning that quite a lot of days, I am alone in ...
  • 1,789
164 votes
12 answers
39k views

What is wrong with sharing knowledge with colleagues at work?

I have a keen interest in learning new things about whatever technology I am using at work and then sharing my knowledge and experiences with colleagues. One of my friends has repeatedly told me NOT ...
  • 1,513
162 votes
10 answers
29k views

Providing post-interview feedback to a candidate who I suspect was googling answers

I'm a fan of providing concrete feedback to candidates after an interview, if for no other reason than because it was something I would want if interviewing myself. However, I have someone that I'm ...
160 votes
16 answers
30k views

How to politely ask a coworker to “Google it”

I'm working in a team of 8 consultants just like me. I'm the youngest member of the team and also the one with the least experience (on resume at least). But 4 of the 8 members of the team will often ...
user avatar
157 votes
6 answers
39k views

Fired because I was wrongfully accused but now I can prove it

I was wrongfully accused of stealing by my now ex-employer. I had previously posted onto this site about how to manage the accusation, but unfortunately, they swiftly moved to fire me within 2 days of ...
  • 1,063
157 votes
9 answers
31k views

Is it ethical to read programming books on the clock?

I have an issue that hasn't ever surfaced as a problem, but it's a question that's been bugging me internally a little bit for the last several years. I've worked at a few different places where they ...
  • 1,639
154 votes
13 answers
55k views

"Offensive" bumper sticker on car

I have a bumper sticker on my vehicle that says The sticker is about 3" × 5" (7.6 cm × 12.7 cm) in white block lettering. My employer has told me to remove the sticker or face disciplinary action. ...
  • 1,568
154 votes
9 answers
28k views

How can I respond to an employee who objects to working on certain projects on ethical grounds?

My company does services for various clients. We recently were offered a contract to perform these services for a guy in the city who does predictions, tarot, numerology and the like for people. He ...
user avatar
154 votes
9 answers
40k views

Supervisor commenting on appearance. Inappropriate?

I work for a big company and am fairly new. I'm on my third or fourth week and was transferred to a new (bigger) dept where it's all men. I am the only woman. I'm also fairly young at 25 years old. ...
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151 votes
14 answers
33k views

How do I tell my boss I successfully did something they asked not to bother trying?

I am working on a programming project where I'm the only developer, but also working closely with my boss to design it. There's a certain step in the project that's a pretty big bottleneck, and I had ...
149 votes
6 answers
31k views

Hostile work environment after whistle-blowing on coworker and our boss. What do I do?

I work night shifts with a co-worker who would always sleep or never be at work. We are both nurses. She is friends with the administrator (our boss) who showed her signs of extreme favoritism on ...
146 votes
15 answers
31k views

Senior architect lashing out when junior developer asks questions. What to do?

I'm a female developer and I've been working at my current employer for 4 months. I’m new to the technology and to the business domain. I basically don’t know much about anything. I am working on the ...
  • 3,365
146 votes
9 answers
19k views

How to convince company to not go overboard with email signature?

The signature culture at my company is dangerously close to ridiculous, and this question made me ask about it here. We're an MS Gold Ultra Colour Plus(tm)(c)(fm)(wtf) Partner which is apparently an ...
  • 3,066
145 votes
12 answers
55k views

Manager has noticed coworker's excessive breaks. Should I warn him?

A junior coworker of mine takes very long breaks every day. I've timed them; he makes hour-long visits to the restroom every day. He is paid by the hour, leaves after 8 hours, and is not allowed to ...
  • 1,171
141 votes
5 answers
20k views

Is celebrating small victories unprofessional?

Often when I'm coding and I crush a bug that I've been battling for a few hours I like to throw my hands in the air and sigh a small YES. Are these small celebrations seen by people as unprofessional? ...
140 votes
13 answers
46k views

How can I screen calls when callers refuse to tell me the nature of the call?

Background: At my workplace we have a small open office of under 10 staff. While I work as a developer which includes making & receiving phone calls for technical matters, I sometimes answer the ...
  • 1,189
137 votes
17 answers
82k views

How can I ask my interviewers for feedback following an interview?

Recently, I had an interview with Amazon. At first, things went smoothly and well. After two interviews, they decided not to move forward with the process. I'm the type of person who wants to ...
  • 1,473
137 votes
12 answers
23k views

How do I politely coexist with a help vampire?

I'm a senior developer at my workplace. A coworker in my sister team… isn't. They're also a textbook help vampire: they face an issue, they don't understand it, they miss the error message, they ...
  • 897
136 votes
8 answers
21k views

How do unlimited vacation days work?

I've seen numerous posts on Stack Overflow Jobs or on-line in general where a company lists "Unlimited vacation days" as one of the company's benefits. I see several issues with this "benefit" and I'...
  • 6,784
134 votes
10 answers
27k views

How should I approach a boss that keeps hiring temporary workers, only to have me finish something?

Long story short, we've recently had a lot of work to do at my job and in order to fill that vacuum my boss has been hiring temporary workers. At first he hired three which stayed for about two months,...
  • 1,301
134 votes
9 answers
61k views

What can I do to make a coworker's lack of effort more visible?

There have been a number of questions where people have been dealing with coworkers who were not pulling their weight. The common perception seems to be that this is due to lack of effort or ability. ...
134 votes
12 answers
55k views

What can I do about a very loud coworker?

Our office space is pretty tight and there are no cubicles. There is a guy sitting next to me and he is the loudest person I ever met. He is groaning, crackling, puffing, giving loud sighs and ...
  • 1,451
133 votes
11 answers
25k views

How to objectively counter "You are the first one to complain about that."?

I've been facing this situation for some time where our office's management keep choosing the cheapest option whenever they have to pay for anything related to our work environment or company travels. ...
  • 6,784
133 votes
14 answers
29k views

Am I being asked to lie in my job?

I work in a call center. If I can’t fix something remotely, I schedule a technician to go fix it. A supervisor gave directions to everyone to only book appointments for technicians after the end of ...
  • 1,208
131 votes
13 answers
32k views

How to answer pointed "are you quitting" questioning when I don't want them to suspect

"[Not] telling your boss you're quitting" is a broad issue spread over many questions, the closest duplicate to mine is probably here. The consensus is that you have no obligation to prewarn employers ...
131 votes
13 answers
28k views

Sexy desktop wallpapers in the office

A colleague uses a wallpaper manager which cycles through his collection of desktop wallpapers, a seemingly unending collection of tattooed women in lingerie. There is no nudity but the images are ...
  • 1,098
131 votes
10 answers
24k views

Slow coworker receiving compliments while I receive complaints

Long story short, how can a good/fast professional receive compliments about how fast and exact their fixes are? I don't want to hear like "oh great job buddy" every time I solve a problem. But I can ...
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