Category Archives: Work

AIBC Poll: Would You Do No Makeup Monday?

This morning, Today Show anchors went live without their usual bevy of beauty products in the name of normalcy. Yes. They, too, have wrinkles and age spots and dark circles under their eyes. Who knew?

no makeup

Check out their bare-faced debuts here.

Empowerment or PR stunt? You decide.


Either way, AIBC has to give them props. It takes a strong person to face and embrace that makeup-free reflection in the mirror each morning, much less to share it with the rest of the world. Would you bare it all (from the neck up) to your co-workers? Take our poll and let us know!


What NOT To Do At the Office Holiday Party

Employee or Plus 1:
Avoid these party faux pas at all costs!

Although you may think it is high-time you let loose and celebrate a much deserved year end party, you will want to keep in mind it is still a business function. As an employee, don’t risk your professional reputation by leaving a bad impression with one night of inadvertent blunders.  Every year these parties happen and every year there is that person (or three) that is talked about relentlessly after the event.  We feel these rules should be common sense, but sometimes sense isn’t so. . . common.

Whether you are the EMPLOYEE or the PLUS 1, keep in mind company parties are strictly business.  Even though they are intended to be social gatherings to reward employees and raise morale, your behavior is being observed every minute. Here are your top nine holiday tips on how not to become that Monday Morning Water Cooler Topic.

EMPLOYEE:  Well, hell.  Start with reading the email or paper invite to the event to determine a dress code.  Nothing there?  Well, ask a coworker.  Still no clue?  Go the safe route and wear a suit/conservative cocktail dress.  Make sure to iron that shit.  Make sure it fits well.  When you realize that you aren’t the person people are looking at like they’re crazy, then you’ll breathe a sigh of relief for taking the safe route.  Trust me.  You’d much rather be the one that slightly overdressed than the one whose navel could be seen from the cleavage dip.  But let me reiterate, check the invite.   Wearing a suit is the easiest way for coworkers to make fun of you for the next 12 months if the party is at a paintball facility.
PLUS 1:  Take cues from your spouse/bf/gf/fiancé/whoever.  Inquire about the attire.  Leave the bedazzler kit, thigh-high glitter boots, low-plunging cocktail dress and the remainder of your nightclub attire in your closet.  Less is always more when talking about accessories but never in regards to hemlines or necklines.   If the first time that boyfriend/girlfriend sees you for the night and it’s too late to change from the too tight see-through red lace spandex you’re wearing then there is a fireball’s chance in hell your relationship may fail.

Able to rock it or not, save this fashion for the bedroom, please.

EMPLOYEE:  Some people really struggle with those out of work bounds engagements.  If you’ve never participated in any Happy Hours or mid-year events, then the Holiday Party is the only time you’ve seen these people outside the confines of the office space.  You may choke up, stutter, whatever.  But you need to act normal.  Mingle with people from other departments.  Maintain the professional gloss, but drop the solemnity and work the charm.  These are the same people you deal with less awkwardly on a daily basis, so just be yourself and not some party caricature of who you think you should be at a social event.
PLUS 1:   You don’t know these people from Adam (unless you met him at last year’s party), so put on a smile and encourage your partner to relax.  Once again, go the safe route.  Laugh at jokes, chill, and have fun.  The more you act normally the more your date will start to relax around the people he/she may have to fire (or may get fired by) tomorrow.

Woooo Hooo! Partaaaaaay!

EMPLOYEE:  Do not do your elevator speech at any point during the evening.  Not over the shrimp cocktails, not on the dance floor, and certainly not in the toilets.  Your leaders have their guards down and want to enjoy this event, too.  How would you feel if you had to be on point around them the whole evening?  Just don’t do it.  It’s the bad timing to pitch your genius corporate strategies, and you’ll be noted as someone who doesn’t respect those boundaries.
PLUS 1: It is your job to support your loved one during this event.  Don’t humiliate them.  They know the company culture, so follow their lead.  Small company and boss is offering shots?  Then have a little fun.  Huge corporate event and your friend/spouse/whatever has never even laid eyes on the CEO in the flesh?  Shut your trap, be a prude, and flash that charming smile.

Trust me. They’ll resent it.

EMPLOYEE:  No, I’m not telling you that you need to lose weight; I’m simply telling you not to circle the buffet like a ravenous wild animal that’s never been fed.  If food is rolling off of your plate from the buffet, it will appear to others you have grave fears that the food won’t last long enough for you to make a second trip.  Chew with your mouth shut and pretend you have a little class, please.
PLUS 1:  Employee rules also apply to you, but also don’t shove food in your coat pockets or purse like you’re a squirrel storing up for a long winter.  Even if there are hundreds of apples and you know they’ll be thrown out after the evening just grab an apple from the grocery store later.  You don’t want to be that date that treated this holiday party as a free ride.  It is all you can eat event, not all you can fit in your purse/pockets.

Sooooo good.

EMPLOYEE:  There is nothing funnier to me than staying sober and watching a bunch of people that don’t know how to dance dance.  There is some viral video material at every single holiday affair.  Dear God.  If you really believe you can dance then pick a favorite song, crank it up, and dance your heart out while video taping it.  Now watch it.  Are you crying because it’s good or because it’s bad?  If good, then get out there and show those people how to do it.  If bad, then please stay off the dance floor.  Lastly, leave the dirty dancing for another party.  You’ll thank me for this gem, too.
PLUS 1:  Ditto Employee Rules.  Leave your “So You Think You Can Dance” audition material at home and go ahead and scratch your award winning “running man”, too.  If you can’t dance, then don’t.   If you can dance and it’s too flashy then you still look like a show-off and a moron.  The end.

Seriously. We all know how this show ended.

EMPLOYEE:  It is never easy to include your date in work conversation since they most likely know nothing about the topic or the people being discussed.  So the simple solution is just don’t do it.  Don’t make your date feel isolated while you chat with people.  More importantly, don’t ditch them to dance/talk/drink/eat with other people.  It’s a self-centered and crappy thing to do.  If you think I’m wrong then do it anyway and see what kind of mood your date is in after an hour of your being AWOL.  Finally, don’t you DARE ditch your date for another romantic interest.  Some serious loss of karma points will occur.  Mark my words.
PLUS 1:  Don’t clam up and refuse to engage people.  Even if this is outside of your comfort zone, try to be pleasant and interested in the people you meet.  If you freeze up like a tranquilized animal it will make it difficult for your date to include you.  There is an awkward silence that occurs after your third (or so) one-word response, and things will surely wane from there.  If you find yourself struggling, then ask people generic questions.  What part of the country are you from?  What brought you to ACME, Inc.?  Etc.  People love talking about themselves, and this will steer any focus off of you while filling conversation gaps.  P.S.  See helpful tip # 3 above.

On the other end of the spectrum from ditching your date, you can always cross that terrible line of PDA.  This is a show of self control.  Prove to your employer that you can be patient and that you’re smart enough to know what is appropriate behavior and when.   Let’s just go ahead and state it is a safe bet to keep tongues in mouths.   Please keep your animal urges under control until your personal after-party.  Seriously, how long do parties last?  Depending on how big of an attendance there is, you may not have to stay until the very end!
PLUS 1:  Do your date a favor and adhere to the same rules.  There is nothing more awkward than making eye contact with the big boss while batting away a horny date trying to place a tongue in your ear or not-so-sneakily grabbing at your groin.

Um… I can see why it’s so hard to control yourself.

Holy crap, this is a bad idea.  I don’t care how hot he/she is.  Thou shalt not shag/kiss/grope/flirt with the Bossarino.  It’ll spin a tangled web of misery over time or end after one night and leave you feeling regretful and stupid.  There is nothing worse than having to worry if your boss will be able to separate work and life or having to feel like you’re trapped in a relationship because it may impact your job.
PLUS 1:  If you exist in this scenario, then your date has broken AIBC’s party etiquette rule #6.  You will not be judged if you walk out on your date (with or without throwing your drink in his/her face).  P.S.  Do NOT hook up with your date’s boss.

And seriously, do you really want your boss to see your panties?

EMPLOYEE:  Yes, this is your time to let loose.  Yes, you are supposed to be able to feel safe and have fun, but the office place is a dirty, dirty world and people are looked down upon for not placing a personal cap on booze.  Plus, irresponsible drinking gets you ZERO respect.  You get behind the wheel of your car on the way home and that terrible accident or arrest record very likely won’t be the only damage you do.  Got a designated driver?  GREAT!  I love that you’re being an incredibly responsible adult.  But please know responsible drinking doesn’t get you bonus points among those who affect your aspiring career path; you’ll still be judged (like it or not this is the truth) for not having self control.  You never want to be the person who double fists, sloshes on the CEO, or has the Monday morning “I said what?” regrets.  This judgment is multiplied if you get fall down drunk, vomit, or are chatting incoherently and can exponentially increase your chances of breaking rules 6 & 7.
PLUS 1:  Although you are not restricted as strongly as an employee with career aspirations, it is your job to be a normal, likeable person for the employee’s sake.  If you can hold your booze and aren’t the DD then have a few and have fun, but please know when to stop drinking and shut up.  Ensure you and date can get home safely.

Trust me. No one will see rainbows.

And lastly, be sure to show gratitude- Thank the host and event planner/organizer upon departure. Not only is this an opportunity to exemplify good manners, it will make you stand out from the many employees and guests who do not.  So go and have fun!  ‘Tis the Season.

Much love,

Shelly (with some help from Krissi)
#dontgetschnockered #amibeingcatty #helpingthosewhoarecommonsensechallenged

Professionalism … It’s more than calling yourself a professional


Congratulations! You have officially obtained your education or training and you likely received a degree (or degrees). You may have also had to pass a qualifying exam. Now you are a professional!


A professional fill-in-the-blank. Banker, doctor, writer, scientist, athlete, nurse, lawyer, educator, motivational speaker, hair stylist, etc., etc., etc. …

But being a professional, acting professionally, is a lot more than a word attached to your education and training. It is more than just your job. Professionalism is about going above and beyond, doing what is necessary rather than the minimum requirements. Professionalism is a verb.


Professionalism is every action you perform in public. People are watching you and observing your attitudes, listening to your words, noticing your facial expressions and body language. Even your appearance.


It is the quality of your work…


…as well as how you treat people.

And all of these things come together to define your professional reputation. And your reputation will always precede you. Keep this in mind at all times, or your professionalism may become a question instead of a positive exclamation.


And professionals that choose to behave unprofessionally are often viewed by others as professional idiots. So check yourself.



What Not to Say at Work

I think we can all agree that work relationships can be a breeding ground for back-stabbing, catty, underhanded and tense situations, and those are just during after-work happy hours. Sometimes it’s all you can do to just keep your trap shut and practice professional decorum. 

To help you avoid the cattiness and douchebaggery (did I just make that up?), here are a few things not to say at work. … You’re free to say them in your head if it makes you feel better, though.

1. Casual Friday does not mean show up in your nightie and call it a dress. We’ll all be back to wearing khakis and polos if you don’t get your girls and gams covered up.

Tights are not pants. Nighties are not dresses. Bras are not camisoles.

2. If I request another work station, have an air purifier and refuse to take sinus medicine, it should be a sign that your overindulgence of Debbie Gibson knock-off perfume is underappreciated. You need to take a bath in tomato juice and scrub the skunk off.

It’s not a night club. It’s work. Rein in your pheromones.

3. Oh, yes. Please send me another inappropriate joke through inter-office email and copy everyone on it. And then make sure that everyone copies everyone else’s LOL and “too funny!” because I totally have time for that shit. I also love the fact you embed 1 MB photo files in the email that crash my computer. But by all means, send away – I don’t mean to be the stick in the mud when everyone just needs a stress reliever.

And you do it badly. Text over the face? Come on! Use those photoshop skills, man!

4. You know that TPS report you turned in Friday? That was a piece of crap. Try again and make some semblance of an effort to actually do your job…you know, the one you’re paid to do here. By the way, I know that you go to the bathroom every hour to play Candy Crush.

Bite me.

5. If I have to sit through another slide presentation that tells me to “maximize work production,” “optimize cost opportunities,” and “diversify our responsibilities,” I’m going to throw myself out the window and take the copier toner with me. Just tell me to do more work for less pay and get it over with.

We all have pet peeves at work. Get it off your chest and vent what you’d like to say here. We’ll never say a word…

Celebrawl: Kick ’em when they’re up, kick ’em when they’re down!

When your work life is public, especially if you’re a celebrity, keeping your mouth shut might be the best school of thought to follow.  I ran across an article recently that had me wondering if there ever is a good time to discuss the dramas that play out at work.  I was shocked to read Ellen Pompeo discussing the two most talked about exits from Grey’s Anatomy: Katherine Heigl & Isaiah Washington.

Maybe Ellen Pompeo felt that there was a statute of limitations on airing your work-related dirty laundry when she was talking to the New York Post or maybe she was just trying to please Don Henley.   (Since the article ran she has said that she thought the interview was off the record.)

On Heigel she said, “When Katie left, it was tough,” she says. “You could understand why she wanted to go — when you’re offered $12 million a movie and you’re only 26. But Katie’s problem is that she should not have renewed her contract. She re-upped, took a big raise and then tried to get off the show. And then her movie career did not take off.”

Where Isaiah Washington was considered, she painted the scene with the most complementary colors she could find.  “You know they wanted Isaiah Washington to be my boyfriend.  Shonda really wanted to put a black man in the mix. I didn’t think they were really going to put an interracial couple on the show and I didn’t want him. It was too close to home.  (Pompeo is married to Chris Ivery, an African-American music producer.)  I said I wanted that Dempsey kid. I think that once Isaiah did not get the role it backfired.”

Celebrity gossip among celebrities only feeds the beast and while her comments referring to Isaiah Washington seem innocent, her comments on Katherine Heigl’s career comes off just a bit catty.

What do you think, is it ever appropriate to discuss work drama with people outside of your office?

#amibeingcatty  #giveusdirtylaundry

That’s a nice bag… not

I frequently travel for work. I refuse to use a rolling bag (bad experience of tripping and banging into people’s knees), so I choose to travel with a backpack. Very collegiate of me, I know.

One evening, I decided to eat dinner at a trendy outdoor shopping area by myself. I often travel alone, so I’m use to keeping to myself. As I’m reviewing my dinner options at the outdoor billboard map, I hear:

“I like your bag.”

I assume it’s not directed toward me, because, well, I have a backpack… And the fact that there are several women walking around with bags that probably cost more than my car payment.


I turn around and a gaggle of young teen girls are huddled together and looking at me. “I like your bag. Ohhh… it’s a backpack.” Before I think it’s an honest mistake, the girls erupt in a synchronized titterly laugh.

It’s been so long since I’ve been the object of pre-teen cattiness, I didn’t know what to do. I shrugged it off and went along my way. As I thought about it, though, I wondered if this was what is considered an acceptable past time now.

Louis Vuitton

I wonder what they would have said if i had been carrying this expensive number? A $45,000 Louis Vuitton bag that’s ugly as butt, but what do I know?

As always, we come up with better responses well past the time to give a rebuttal to a snarky comment directed at us. Here are a couple of responses I wish I had thought of at the time:

  1. Thank you! It’s a Swiss Army backpack. I got it for a great deal! Let me show it to you. It has several pockets, which is great, and it can fold out so you don’t have to remove your laptop when you go through airport security. I like the gray because it usually goes with whatever I’m wearing, which is usually neutral, classic colors, but it could still work with bright patterns.
  2. Ladies, if you are trying to go for the catty bitch personality, you’ve failed on all levels. My backpack is probably the nicest, most expensive item I’m wearing. I’m so disappointed that you didn’t attack my frizzy hair or call out that my tattered shoes are from Target two seasons ago.
  3. Why don’t I buy you girls some gelato? I’d like to talk to you about how your hurtful, catty words and poor attitude toward other women, especially someone older, can affect your friendships and future opportunities. Here, have a seat. Let’s discuss why you chose to call me out and if it truly made you feel better about yourself or put you in a better standing with your so-called friends.

I understand that this is a small example of cattiness, but wouldn’t it be nice to correct this behavior while we, as ladies, are young, before it spirals out of control in the workplace or in an adult friendship?

What would you have said to them?


#LouisVuittoncankissit #Pimpmybookbag

Reader Submission: My Business Card Kicks Your Card’s A$$

“Amelia” writes:

A guy and I work in the same field, so we had known each other for several years before he came to work with me.  I helped hire him into my company in 2010.  I left in 2011 and with my departure, there was just some bad blood.  I felt like he was part of a group that was “in” with the boss, the same group that pushed some of us who had been there for a while out the door.  I have no proof, but I feel like he told lies about me to the boss. He just got promoted to a director, a position that was suppose to be mine, until the guy who hired me left. A week or so after finding out about his promotion, I wrote him a nice note on my finest stationary and congratulated him, told him that I know he worked hard, just like me, to get to where he is. I closed by saying please keep in touch, and I enclosed my business card which included my new title of “Executive Director.”   HA HA!!!!!!  It was gloating for sure.  Ultimately, I wanted him to know he didn’t ruin my life. In fact I wound up a 1,000 times better.

Now, that’s a nice business card.

Dear “Amelia”,

First, congratulations on your promotion. Since you don’t seem to have a question for us, we’re going to make up a few for you, and answer them.

Question 1: Am I being catty?
Answer: HELL, YES YOU ARE! In fact, you’re so catty that if I had two dead mice, I’d give you one!

Question 2: Could I have been cattier? If so, how?
Answer: Well, there’s always room for improvement, dear. You could have sent him a cake like this:

Let him have his cake and eat it, too!

Let him have his cake and eat it, too!

Question 3: Do you think I’m witty and funny?
Answer: Well, your heart was in the right place. But, then again I think I am witty and funny. In fact, I’m pretty sure I may be the most brilliant person I’ve ever met. I wish “Am I Being Catty” had business cards, because I’d send you one.

I’m CEO, Bitch.

Now, we have questions back to you.

Question 1:  You think this guy lied about you? Spread untrue gossip?  Is this like a “I’ve heard from reliable sources” kind of thing? If so, what a douche. Or is this more like the pope conspiracy theories?  Paranoia is the land just east of CrazyBitchistan.

See what a short hop it is between these two places?

See what a short hop it is between these two places?

Question 2: Why you care? Did you feel the need to prove yourself? If so, have you ever heard the phrase, “living well is the best revenge?”  Keeping up with who’s who at your old job shows you still have resentment toward the situation or lack of resolution. Why do you need him to know you came out in a higher ranking position?

Question 3:  Did you think your jab was on the sly? It does get you a level 3 catty badge and membership to the Disney Villain club. We know it’s a cutthroat world in corporate America, but why burn bridges?

Look, Amelia.  If anything, our questions show you that we really haven’t walked in your shoes.  If the guy was spreading rumors about you and sabotaged your chances at a promotion, we totally get why you did what you did.

We’re not endorsing it, but completely understand your motivation.  And, if that’s the case, then it sounds like he belongs on Team Disney Villain more than you do.  BUT, there’s an upside, as you very well know: Every Disney villain loses in the end, and the princess always gets the guy and/or the Executive Director role.

So, congratulations on the promotion, you Level 3, you.  Now, go enjoy it and stop stressing over how the undeserving turn out.  Captain Karma will take care of that for you.

Just our two cents,

The AIBC Team
#iwinatlife #yougoindownsucka #disneyvillain #crazybitchistan #karma #level3 #amibeingcatty