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The Career Lessons I Learned From Dr. Seuss

A career is a journey that for many will last 30-40+ years. Like most journeys it is seldom boring, and even the best researched plans can take the traveler on a winding road of adventure, unforeseen hazards, and ultimate reward. Back in 1990, Dr. Seuss wrote a book called, “Oh, the places you’ll...
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Career Innovation - It's the right time for a new perspective

The music of your youth is part of your identity.  The sounds float along with you throughout your life.  Like a favorite old pair of jeans they represent comfort; what you know and what you like.  The downside is that your connection to your favorite music can limit you from exploring others.  I’m...
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Kick Your Own &$*

I was recently re-reading a book by Jeffrey Gitomer and came to the principle: Kick Your Own &$*. I was struck by the power and simplicity of this principle because it’s one that we can all easily remember. The principle goes beyond the focus of the book, building a business, and extends to many...
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Is Stupid Loyalty Getting In The Way Of Your Career Success?

I was recently having dinner with a group of friends when one asked another why she had not been returning calls and missed our last dinner! Astra explained that she was experiencing a rough time at work. Her company was downsizing a large number of people and it had caused her so much stress that...
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Close the Career Opportunity by Preparing Your Reference

You’ve been made a formal offer of employment. Congratulations! All of your hard work preparing for numerous interviews has paid off. You had stiff competition for the position, but you’re the final candidate. You’re now finalizing the paperwork and will start in 2 weeks, pending the minor issue of...
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5 Ways to Bring Your Personal Brand to Life Using LinkedIn

With 300 million members, LinkedIn is easily the largest professional social media platform. It’s terrific for networking, sourcing jobs, and lots more.  LinkedIn played an integral role in helping me land my current role. I used LinkedIn to search by keyword skill and industry to connect with...
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7 Steps for Negotiating Your Offer of Employment

One of the best parts about working with clients in career transition is when I get the call saying “I’ve got an offer”.  This is the end game so it’s very good news and I truly share in their excitement. This excitement is often quickly followed with “What do I do now?”  Euphoria is replaced with –...
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3 Types of Skills New Managers Need

It’s a common theme -- moving from doing to managing can be both rewarding and daunting. On the one hand, new managers have been recognized for their hard work, but the flip side is they now have to start to manage people and much of the success of a manager is around ‘people skills’. We all know...
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The Question That Makes Even Great Leaders Cringe

Does this sound familiar? You know you are a good leader. You sincerely care about your people. You give solid direction and constructive performance feedback. You get good employee survey results.  Yet you secretly cringe when one of your employees says: “can we talk about my next promotion?” There...
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They’re Just Not That Into You

So you’re not sure what’s just happened.  You’ve received a phone call that you will not be moving on to the next round of interviews. You take stock of what you did. - You had a good résumé that effectively sold your skills and breadth of experience. - You wrote a strong cover letter that spoke...
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Are Managers Too Busy Managing Stuff To Manage People?

“For the majority of employees, managers are the gateway to the future.” This quote from a recent Knightsbridge study is one that resonates with many people. From our experience, leaders underestimate their impact on employee engagement and retention. What if I told you most employees just want...
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Show Them The Money: A 4-Step Business Case for Career Management

Even though most HR practitioners are familiar with the benefits that career development can provide, many business leaders, managers and especially C-suite executives are not. Recently I was working with a client in the consumer products industry who was struggling to find a solution for dismal...
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Make Gold-Medal Graciousness Part of your Personal Brand

This past Olympic fortnight I’ve been struck a number of times by the graciousness of individuals at the top of their profession. What it looks like is this: athletes honouring the trailblazers before them to provide the opportunity to do what they are so talented at doing, winners and losers...
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The Ugly Duckling & Career Management

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before:   You’ve been downsized, right sized, or optimized and just as you begin to get over the angst and confusion of this decision you run into that thing called the marketplace. Don’t get me wrong, it is where you need to be. It’s just that the marketplace can...
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It’s The Summer – Nothing Is Going On In The Job Market. Or Is It?

Every year about this time, I begin to hear my Career Transition clients say things such as “With summer, around the corner, is now the best time to be looking for a job?”, “Are there any jobs posted during the summer?”, “I’ve really noticed that the job advertisements have dropped off” or my...
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What is Career Capital and How To Get It

Career Capital is the result of investing in your skills, attributes, and behaviors. If you have an abundance of Career Capital you are the person people want to work with or work for, leaders see you as the high potential, and other employees want to collaborate with you. Individuals who have...
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Caring for Aging Parents & Managing Your Career

  Last week I was going to write a blog titled “I Don’t Have a Life, I Have a Job”. The focus of the blog post was going to be the issue of work-life balance and how difficult that can be to manage. However; the issue of managing my life and managing my career recently became a reality for me. On...
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Tips to Become a Great Networker

  Many people assume networking is a skill set that you need if you are looking for a job or you are in sales, but the truth is that networking is a key skill set that everyone needs to have in today’s job market. Networking is key to career success for many reasons including if you currently hold a...
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Detaching From Your Former Job - A 9 step action plan to move you into the future

  Detaching from a job that you have held for years is very difficult - especially if you did not choose to leave, but instead were given a package and told your services were no longer required.   Dan had been working with the same company for 10 years as a Sales Manager with 15 people reporting to...
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Are You Relying Too Much On Your Boss?

I read a great blog about what to do if you’re feeling under-utilized on your team.  The article was by Career expert Chrissy Scivicque.  You can read it here. One of her useful suggestions (after making sure you’re doing your current job to perfection) was to make a specific request of your boss...
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Are Goals a Waste of Time?

  When I first started writing this over the Christmas holiday I was going to inspire you with my knowledge and expertise on creating, setting, and achieving goals.  I wanted to teach people how to get that promotion, recognition from your boss, or a salary increase — I am all about goals.  I even...
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4 Tips for The First Interview

The executive interview process can be a lengthy one with many interviewers and stakeholders to impress along the way. Shining at this initial stage will help you establish credibility early in the process. Here are 4 tips to help ensure that first interview is a slam dunk:  1.  Be gracious to...
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After the Firing - STOP and Reflect

After being released from a job your mind may have a million questions: what should I do next, who do I know, should I relocate, what should I say about why I am no longer with company XYZ, who can help me, who is in my network, what kind of interview questions will I be asked, and on and on. In my...
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Nobody's Fault But Mine

The New Year marks a time for many to reflect. For some, it’s about confronting the obvious: I am not happy in my career and I want things to change. When it comes to making a career move, it’s tempting to think: All I need to do is change my current role and happiness will be all mine … mua haa haa...
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Looking For Passion In All The Wrong Places

  As a career coach I work with people every day, helping them understand their skills, value, brand, motivators, and overall career aspirations. The one question I am asked on a regular basis is “how do I find my passion?” -- the perfect job that is fulfilling enough to drive every aspect of your...
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Going Beyond Resume Buzzwords

LinkedIn recently published a top 10 list of repetitive words professionals over-use on their profiles. According to LinkedIn, “creative”, “motivated” and “communication” are boring and overused. So the latest buzz is to figure out unique ways to describe what you offer. While I agree with this...
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Personal Branding 101: How to Manage Your Brand

  For everyone rolling your eyes at the word “brand”, replace the word “brand” for “reputation”.    Now let me introduce you to the importance of managing your brand because you have one regardless of what you think. People have an opinion about how you show up in the workplace and who you are so...
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The Younger Generation - It's not their fault they feel entitled in the workplace

  It has been written by philosophers, politicians, and people in general “the measure of a society is how we treat the weakest members.” Needless to say we are failing miserably at how we treat our aging population, but I will leave that for another day. Today, I want to discuss our younger...
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How Managers & Employees Should Behave During a Termination/Exit Meeting

Over the last ten years I have been privy to thousands of corporate transitions and have observed both good and bad behaviors from managers and employees.  The Impact of Termination on Employees: For many employees a termination is a defining moment in their life ─ a moment in time that affects...
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How to Have Career Coaching Conversations (Step 5 of 5)

Discuss progress and hold employees accountable. Although the employee is the key to making his or her career plan unfold, as a manager you have an important and ongoing role. It is your responsibility to: hold regular employee career conversations, establish accountability, and be clear in your...
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How to Have Career Coaching Conversations (Step 4 of 5)

Here’s the bottom line: if you are not able to do this as an employee you are in trouble. If you do not do this as a manager, you have failed the company and your team. It is the role of the manager to ensure that each member of their team understands: • the organization’s goals and strategies, • ...
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Is my Authentic Self hurting My Professional Brand?

  Definition of 'Open Kimono': To reveal what is being planned or to share important information freely. Similar to ''open the books'' or an "open door policy." Opening the kimono means revealing the inner workings of a project, person or company to an outside party. Also referred to as "open (up)...
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5 Simple Steps To Help You Manage Your Career

  In a recent Forbes article entitled “Careers Are Dead. Welcome to Your Low-Wage, Temp Work Future,” the writer J. Maureen Henderson suggests that careers are dead; and therefore, Gen Y is doomed to low paying jobs at the mall! The basics of this article have been written time and time again. The...
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What’s Your Internal Klout Score as a Leader?

Leaders with real influence will have clout in their organizations. Business Insider ran an article last week about some recent changes to Klout, the social network service that ranks people based on their influence. For one thing, Klout is changing its website. But more importantly, it’s revamping...
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Professional Networking 101

At the moment I am torn between my beliefs and values around networking, and being so irritated I want to toss them out the window! I believe that “networking is the key to career success” and I also believe that I should live and breathe what I preach to my clients every day. If I am asked for help...