Articles in Category: Blog

Sustainable Change for 2017.. and Beyond

Written by Michelle Braden, CEO Posted in Blog

Sustainable Change for 2017.. and Beyond
Time and again, as the years fly by, we find ourselves seeking to improve either our skills or our habits so that we might increase our chances of professional success. We buy new books, we attend shiny seminars; our hunger for success drives us to such extremes that we go through the same motions every year. It is because of this intense frenzy to improve that we forget the most essential fact in this whole scenario: with just a tiny bit of guidance, the ability to improve and succeed lies within our own control.

 

With this new year upon us, and working with the same drive and enthusiasm that we use every day to elevate your career, let’s look at the factors that will ensure positive, and sustainable, change for 2017.

 

Discover Yourself

It all starts with self awareness. Taking an assessment like Strengthfinders or Emergenetics will help you identify the types of activities that either give you energy or drain your energy . The insight you gain with this information will be crucial in understanding where your strengths lie so that you can capitalize on them and shine. Sure, you may be able to do any given job. Who knows, you might even be able to master it. However, the real payoff comes when you discover your underlying strengths (ones that you might not even know existed) and pursue them with the same amount of gusto that you otherwise might have wasted on a job that is draining the life out of you.

 

Gather Feedback

What have people said to you about your work or your habits? What have you heard them say that you are good at? Better yet, what have you hear them say that you are not good at? The more honest the feedback, the better. Because we are not the best at analyzing ourselves in these types of circumstances, gathering this type of information will be a tremendous help. Make sure to nurture a thick skin though, because believe it or not, none of us are good at everything. In American culture, we have heard time and again that we can do anything. Well no, sorry to say, the truth is that you cannot do anything. Just recognizing that can be liberating and empowering.

 

Question Yourself

With your personal values clear in your mind, ask the types of questions that will help you understand what is genuinely at your core and what it is that you truly seek. Do you want to be in a small organization or a  large organization? Do you want to be in a private, public, or non-profit setting? Does the purpose of the organization align with your purpose? What kind of people and team do you want to work with? Think about what it is that you are really looking for. For example, if you want a job with adventure and you get a job requiring you to be behind a desk all day, it  can be extremely unfulfilling. Of course, you can seek adventure in other parts of your life, but think about it: a day job is 10 hours a day. If you can find something that gives you energy, rather than drains it, that is the perfect start for positive and sustainable change.

 

Prepare for Challenges

If you are not careful, your career controls you. If you get on a path where you are getting promotions but being moved around and getting positioned where you are losing control of the important things around you, you are now wearing the golden handcuffs. You have a great job, a title and money, but you feel miserable. You’ve let your career control you instead of you controlling your career. If you are going to make a career change, this is your opportunity to slow down, answer these questions and figure out what you really want.

 

Sustainable change is difficult, there’s no question. We all face daily battles that seem to put us back five steps after we’ve fought tooth and nail for the last four . It is for this very reason that, before we set out into the unknown, we need to first do our homework and figure out what really makes us tick. Go take that assessment, talk to that trusted friend, ask yourself those important questions and, most importantly, prepare for what might set you back. With each step you take and question you ask, you are gathering the building blocks for a solid foundation for change. Finally, be confident that you will ultimately make the right decisions that will keep paying you back day after day. You owe it to yourself.


The Intangible ROI of Community Involvement

Written by Adrian Felts Posted in Blog

The Intangible ROI of Community Involvement

We are excited to have a new blog contributor on our team, Adrian Felts!  To learn more about Adrian, click here!  Adrian's insights on the ROI of giving back to our community is an imporant way to develop that imporat leadership competency in your organization and for yourself.  So without further ado... enjoy!

 


When is the last time you were able tell senior management in your organization the expected financial return on investment (ROI, because there's always an acronym) for time spent volunteering?  For workers who find personal value in giving back, this can be very frustrating.  For managers who have financial targets to hit, this too is frustrating. You want your employees to give back because you understand the value is creates for them in their lives and careers, and doggonit, it's good for the community!  But ultimately, time not spent on billable projects is revenue lost, regardless of whether it's volunteer time or time paid for by the company.  So, I have a few thoughts on how to go about doing this so it's a win - win for all involved.

  

Using EQ to Enhance Your Stakeholder Analysis

Written by MSBCoach Posted in Blog

Enhance your stakeholder analysis with social awareness and relationship management in mind.

Using EQ to Enhance Your Stakeholder Analysis

When you think of doing a stakeholder analysis, doesn’t it seem a little mid-20th century? When you look at it, after all is said and done, isn’t it really just names? Scrawled black and white names hanging there on the page in front of you with no depth whatsoever. However, there is something much, much more going on behind each and every name on that page.  Every one of those colleagues, every one of those team members, has an emotional makeup that pushes them to make all sorts of decisions, both logical and illogical. Those humans, every individual named on that page, are flesh, blood, and bones so why not take that fact into consideration the next time you perform a stakeholder analysis?

I understand, it might seem a little challenging to project your EQ onto something as two-dimensional as a stakeholder map. “I mean” you might be thinking “isn’t the stakeholder analysis supposed to simply be a strategic planning tool? Don't make this more difficult than it needs to be!”  

Developing Business Acumen – Ready – Aim – Fire

Written by Barbara Higgins Posted in Blog

Developing Business Acumen – Ready – Aim – Fire

Business Acumen – The words reverberate with the precise confidence of success. This manager seems to have a business compass to hone in on the directional decisions that are right for the organization.

Acumen, conveys a confidence and knowledge for efficient and effective business. Although these words convey a natural ability, the truth is that business acumen is more a verb in practice than a noun. You need to develop acumen as an active search for business skills and to applying that knowledge over time. Great concept…but now you’re thinking what does that mean to me in my career?

Business acumen is about focus so let’s think about a Ready – Aim – Fire approach for your success.

 

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