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Tagged ‘Best Practices‘

Leadership – The Pros & Cons of “Mystique”

I had a look, back in the day. Black suit. Hair slicked into a bun. Severe. Serious. You might think I meant business. Truly, I just didn’t have time for much more in the morning than quick rinse and a dash out the door. I had to get my hustle on, get to the office, plunk down in my maroon cube, and gear up to climb the Corporate America ladder.

Eventually, I got my big break. My big boss got the flu, and I got to sit in for her at a leadership roundtable. I bought a new black suit. I bought a plane ticket. I bought a fresh notebook, sat in the middle seat and spent two hours at 30,000 feet imagining what the big picture of leadership might look like.

The event was hosted at the headquarters of the Top Team. They put on a show, pulled out all the stops. We got fruit baskets. At the outset, I felt like an insider.

I had traveled quite a distance with the express assignment of sharing best practices, being enthusiastic and collaborative, listening, learning, and bringing back the revealed secrets of success. While Top Team Leader was taking us on a tour of her trophies, I asked, specifically, “What is the secret of your success?”

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Remember to Blink – Four Ways to Win The Week

I can type as fast as you can talk. It’s my superhero skill, particularly useful during chats with clients. Because people will say brilliant things. And I want to get every bit.

Some weeks go by in a blink. Consecutive work-till-midnight days juggling back-to-back-to-back calls and projects and meetings. Bleary-eyed early mornings checking in to make sure we got every bit. Still, we forget. We forget to make time for ourselves.

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In the midst of last week’s dizzying rush, I found an unexpected oasis of calm during a conference call to shape a FISH! Philosophy event. The client spoke with a joyful lilt about what she wanted to create in the room and I was carried away by our shared objective: To mix business needs with personal connections.

“It’s like my eye doctor said,” she said. “Because sometimes I stare at the computer too long, and my eyes get dry. Remember to blink.”

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Personal Branding – Shake What Your Mamma Gave You

It’s easier, I think, to market an inanimate thing.  Say… this pepper shaker.  Every morning, when you wake up, this pepper shaker is basically the same.  Same shape, same pepper, same shaker.

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What if you are marketing your personal brand?  And say… every morning you wake up to you… the brand new you?  New shape, new pepper, new shaker?  What do you do?

You get comfortable with the uncomfortable truth that each of us is new and fresh and full of unexpected spice, each day of our life.  That we might not be able to contain or define the particular flavor of what we’ll bring to that day.  That we might need to speak in general terms about our vigor until we find the particular project where our pep might be best placed.

So…what to do? Read more →