Wednesday, August 15, 2007

AUGUST 15, 2007

Some bad news and good news here. The bad news: The joy of buying someone the PERFECT birthday present, and seeing the look of happiness and gratitude on their face when they open it... those days may be coming to an end.

The good news: You don't have to kill yourself trying to figure out what to buy people for gifts anymore.

According to a new survey, 81% of Americans, that's just over four out of five, say that, for their birthday, the number one thing they want is a GIFT CARD... so they can pick out their own present. All you have to pick out is which store's gift card they'd want most.

People ages 35 to 54 actually want gift cards the most of any age group. Women prefer them more than men.

After gift cards, electronics are the second most wanted gift, then clothes, then tickets to a show or a sporting event.

Doctors say you could extend your life if you'd do just five things:
--Take a low dose of aspirin every day
--Get a colonoscopy
--Get a breast cancer screening
--If you're over 50 years old, get a flu shot every year
--Quit smoking

In a report by the Partnership for Prevention, health experts say the most important preventive measure is probably the daily low dose aspirin. 45,000 lives could be saved every year from heart disease by taking the aspirin.

What would you do? I read about someone whose coworker recently returned from her second maternity leave. Since she was the only person in the office who's familiar with the software the employee on leave used, she covered for her during their three-month absence.

In that time, she realized what an easy job the woman on leave had. She was basically working only four hours a day, using the rest of the time to do personal business. With her REGULAR position, she frequently needed to put in 10-hour days, doing tasks that she could easily help with.

To make matters worse, when the other employee came back, she received a raise. The upset employee wanted to know if she should say something to her boss...

We got a wide variety of your responses. One person called in (who is a manager) and said bosses hate tattle-tales... don't say anything and it will work itself out. Another called in and said the unappreciated employee should find a new job. We also heard from an HR person who said the employee who received the raise shouldn't be bragging about it, and that, in some companies, could be a fireable offense.

What do you think?