Blog

I write about leadership, careers and the future of work. I publish to my Facebook and LinkedIn pages.

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Level Up

Would you prefer to be the smartest person in the room or the least informed?

Own Your Future

We’re all works in progress; we’re never complete. We need to think of our careers as growing startup ventures constantly adapting to the professional challenges that come our way.

Career Storming

“The evolving you is not a moving target, but pursues a moving target.” ~ Alan Weiss & Marshall Goldsmith In their book, Lifestorming: Creating Meaning and Achievement in Your Career and Life, Alan Weiss and Marshall Goldsmith explore what it takes to make significant changes in our lives in order to achieve our goals – … Continue reading Career Storming

Leadership Is A Verb

Leadership is a way of thinking, a way of acting and, most importantly, a way of communicating. ~ Simon Sinek   “I almost didn’t reach out to you,” she said. “If Sally hadn’t recommended you, I would have looked elsewhere.” This was a new client. We were wrapping up our initial meeting and talking about … Continue reading Leadership Is A Verb

Embrace the Suck

“Let thee embrace me, sour adversity, for wise men say it is the wisest course” ~ William Shakespeare My pal, Bill Pusey, and I convene the Ascending Leaders’ Network, a monthly gathering of leaders in southern Maine seeking to have a more strategic impact on their organizations. Last fall, our discussion topic was “Embrace the … Continue reading Embrace the Suck

The Lesson of the “E”: Shift Your Perspective

“Argue like you’re right, listen like you’re wrong.” ~ Daniel Pink   Here in Portland, Maine, I help facilitate, along with my buddy Bill Pusey, a group of leaders who meet monthly to share the challenges and solutions of leadership that they confront in their roles. A while ago we met and discussed Dan Pink’s … Continue reading The Lesson of the “E”: Shift Your Perspective

You’re Not the Hero

People don’t care about your story, they care about their own. Donald Miller’s Building A StoryBrand: Clarify Your Message So Customers Will Listen has had a significant impact on my thinking and work with clients. Miller is president of StoryBrand, a marketing firm that helps clients clarify their messaging. I picked up the book after … Continue reading You’re Not the Hero

Re-entry

“The future in flux always is.” ~ Yoda Alert: This is a longer than usual post. Last June I wrote about my son Dave’s thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail – 2,200 miles from Springer Mountain, GA to Mount Katahdin, ME. At the time, he was just about a third of the way into his trek. … Continue reading Re-entry

Build The Right Narrative

In the past, I’ve mentioned the importance of message; how it describes the essence of who you are professionally and allows you to create your own game and define your unique place in the market. When you tell stories around your message, you’re detailing the professional value you bring to an organization – your leadership … Continue reading Build The Right Narrative

What If?

If you don’t know where you’re going, you’ll end up someplace else. ~ Yogi Berra In their book, The 12 Week Year: Get More Done in 12 Weeks Than Others Do in 12 Months, Brian P. Moran and Michael Lennington contend that we should abandon annual 12 month planning in favor of developing new plans … Continue reading What If?

Find the Fire

“…you really need only about twenty seconds of courage at a time.” Scott Mautz, in his book, Find the Fire: Ignite Your Inspiration and Make Work Exciting Again, argues that inspiration is the “most powerful programming we have on our internal hard drive.” It’s more powerful than motivation. With motivation, we take an idea and … Continue reading Find the Fire

Courage

We are approaching the final quarter of 2017. How is the year going for you so far? I’m hoping it’s productive, both personally and professionally. I also wish you courage in tackling the challenges that lie ahead in the remainder of the year. We’re all facing challenges. Some will be easy to address, others not … Continue reading Courage

Career Pivot: The New Normal

“Virtually everything about jobs and work and careers has changed.” ~ Scott Uhrig I’ve just finished reading Jenny Blake’s Pivot: The Only Move That Matters Is Your Next One. Because careers are no longer straightforward, linear and predictable; pivoting within our roles and throughout our careers is the new normal. A Pivot Mindset Careers have … Continue reading Career Pivot: The New Normal

Resilience

  “It’s not as bad as the Smokies.” ~ Dave Woodard My son, Dave, is hiking the Appalachian Trail. He’s attempting a through hike – the entire 2,200 miles at one time. He began in mid-March at Springer Mountain, GA and will finish up at the trail’s northern terminus, Mount Katahdin, ME in early October. … Continue reading Resilience

Throw Off the Bowlines

I collect quotes…sayings and aphorisms that impart wisdom. The best do so with humor. One of my favorite resources for these is Mark Twain, who just had a knack for pithy sayings that makes one pay attention and sometimes laugh out loud, often at ourselves. Here’s a Mark Twain quote that I recently stumbled onto: … Continue reading Throw Off the Bowlines

Making Time

Here in southern Maine, a number of us gather each month for SMBME (Social Media Breakfast – Maine). We get together to share experiences and learn from each other on a variety of different topics in and around the social media sphere. A recent program was entitled “Making Time for Your Marketing and Growing Your … Continue reading Making Time

Circle of Influence

Recently my client, “Rich,” and I had a conversation about networking. Rich is a senior-level engineer trying to decide what’s next in his career. Like a number of us, Rich is an introvert. He’s not terribly comfortable talking with people he barely knows and asking them for advice. In fact, the idea is abhorrent to … Continue reading Circle of Influence

What Do You Do?

What do you do? How do you answer this question? Do you provide your job title or occupation: Car sales, plumber, housewife, career coach? Or do you respond with WHAT YOU DO? Do you give what you do meaning and value? I can’t recall where I read this, but it had an impact on me. … Continue reading What Do You Do?

The Paradox of the Comfort of Crowds

An interesting dynamic often occurs with new clients. They may sign on, initially because their current job search isn’t working. They have a traditional resume, one that lists, in chronological order, the responsibilities of the positions they’ve held over the years. They may have posted this resume on job boards and used it in applying for … Continue reading The Paradox of the Comfort of Crowds

Disrupt Yourself

If you’ve reached a plateau or you’re not happy on your current career ladder, then you should disrupt yourself just as innovative companies do.

Are You Laying Bricks or Building a Cathedral?

Clients often express frustration that they’re not finding meaning in their work. They may have at one time, but no longer. They may feel they have plateaued in their current role and there’s no place for them to go. They may have mastered their work and are no longer challenged. Their workplace may be disruptive or toxic and … Continue reading Are You Laying Bricks or Building a Cathedral?

Are You Remarkable?

Are you a fan of TED Talks, the videos that showcase “Ideas Worth Spreading”? I love them. In under 20 minutes you can watch some really smart people talk about key ideas. One of my favorite TED Talks is by marketing guru, Seth Godin speaking about “Sliced Bread and Other Marketing Delights.” In this video, … Continue reading Are You Remarkable?

Begin With The End In Mind

The beginning of the year is a great time for self assessment and the setting of new goals. Often these goals center around improving current jobs and careers or obtaining new jobs and new careers. Many clients struggle at this time of year with these challenges. They’ve taken stock of where they are and have decided … Continue reading Begin With The End In Mind

Defining Your Impact; Articulating Your Value

Alice (not her real name) came in perplexed. “I’m a social policy researcher at the university. The group I’ve been affiliated with has lost its funding. I need to figure out how to market myself in a way that appeals to new funders.” “Great! Let’s talk about what you’ve done.” “Basically I organized webinars and … Continue reading Defining Your Impact; Articulating Your Value

Are You an Agent of Change?

Just over a week ago, I attended the annual Agents of Change Digital Marketing conference, here in Portland, Maine and organized by Rich Brooks of Flyte Media. This was my second time attending the conference, and like last year, I was struck how digital marketing strategies closely resemble success in one’s career. Key takeaways for … Continue reading Are You an Agent of Change?

Developing Your Professional Brand: Strategy & Execution

Your professional brand “is about figuring out who you really are and what you do best, and then living that brand out. It’s the essence of authenticity.” ~ Dorie Clark Over the past few weeks, I’ve written about the cornerstones of your professional brand. So far I’ve addressed Purpose, Clarity and Focus. Today, I’ll address the final cornerstone: Strategy. You will recall that Purpose … Continue reading Developing Your Professional Brand: Strategy & Execution

Focus: What’s the story you tell about your value?

One cornerstone of your professional brand is Focus – telling stories that convey your value. In his book, The Power of Story: Change Your Story, Change Your Destiny in Business and in Life,” Jim Loehr notes that we tell stories to help us navigate through life because they provide structure and direction. The stories we tell give … Continue reading Focus: What’s the story you tell about your value?

Bringing Clarity to Your Professional Brand

In an earlier post on “Developing Your Professional Brand”, I mentioned Dorie Clark’s quote that your professional brand “is about figuring out who you really are and what you do best, and then living that brand out. It’s the essence of authenticity;” and that there are four cornerstones to be addressed when developing your professional brand: Purpose, Clarity, Focus and Strategy. This … Continue reading Bringing Clarity to Your Professional Brand

Purpose, Meaning and Work

In my post, “Developing Your Professional Brand”, I noted Dorie Clark’s comment that your professional brand “is about figuring out who you really are and what you do best, and then living that brand out. It’s the essence of authenticity.” I mentioned that four cornerstones need to be addressed when developing your professional brand: Purpose, Clarity, Focus and Strategy. Today, I want … Continue reading Purpose, Meaning and Work

Developing Your Professional Brand

Your professional brand “is about figuring out who you really are and what you do best, and then living that brand out. It’s the essence of authenticity.”         ~ Dorie Clark, author of Reinventing You: Define Your Brand, Imagine Your Future There has been a great deal of discussion these days, in the career development field, about … Continue reading Developing Your Professional Brand

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