Blog

Partnership with our local Community and its 2017 YCC Program

November 28, 2017

The Prince George’s County Youth CareerConnect program (PGC-YCCP) is a 4 year STEM education initiative funded by the U.S Department of Labor to provide over 2,500 high school students in Prince George’s County with education and skills training, internships, college prep and dual enrollment, mentoring, and job readiness training to excel in the high growth industries in Healthcare and Information Technology(IT).

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Mutual Faith Between the Leader and the Lead

July 17, 2017

With the speed of change today, a five-year plan will already be obsolete within a few months. Time is of the essence to adapt to change and innovation, meaning leaders must be on the cusp of development. Two initial qualities for alert leaders are: faith in oneself and faith in others.

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4 Myths That Get in the Way of Innovation

March 18, 2016

Innovation is like motherhood; everyone worships it, but it’s surrounded by a lot of mystique and bogus intellectualizing. The first step on the way to inspiring innovation is to ruthlessly expunge the romantic myths that surround it — they often stop us from seeing the fresh ideas that are right in front of us. Here are four of the biggest myths about innovation, along with tips for seeing your way around them:

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Women CEOs – Bold Enough To Be A Woman?

March 16, 2016

Virginia M Rometty, new CEO of IBM, joins Meg Whitman, CEO of Hewlett-Packard, and Ursula Burns, CEO of Xerox, to be among the elite 2 percent of women who hold CEO positions in Fortune 500 companies. We still have a long way to go, but now that we see more women in positions of power, the question is: How will they use their power? Will they fulfill the late congresswoman Bella Abzug’s prediction that in the 21st century, power will not change women; women will transform the meaning of power?

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5 Things Super Successful People Do Before 8am

November 25, 2013

Rise and shine! Morning time just became your new best friend. Love it or hate it, utilizing the morning hours before work may be the key to a successful and healthy lifestyle. That’s right, early rising is a common trait found in many CEOs, government officials, and other influential people. Margaret Thatcher was up every day at 5 a.m.; Frank Lloyd Wright at 4 am and Robert Iger, the CEO of Disney wakes at 4:30am just to name a few. I know what you’re thinking – you do your best work at night. Not so fast. According to Inc. Magazine, morning people have been found to be more proactive and more productive. In addition, the health benefits for those with a life before work go on and on. Let’s explore 5 of the things successful people do before 8 am.

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Ethics-Simply Doing the Right Thing?

June 5, 2013

It’s easy to understand and beat the drum for the big ethical mishaps.  It’s not at all difficult to identify the big no-no’s — insider trading, sexual harassment, environmental violations, stealing etc.  These situations don’t just happen.  They begin as a slow drip or leak, that left untended turn into a soggy mess.  All those little dilemmas, those situations that “just don’t feel right” are just the first raindrop in a “storm of scorn”.

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Corporate Culture – Not Just About Morale

April 3, 2013

Corporate culture, is defined as “a pattern of basic assumptions that are considered valid and that are taught to new members as the way to perceive, think and feel in the organization.” (Nelson & Quick, 2011) At its most basic, corporate culture is about how an organization gets things done. Although an intangible, it is a critical asset that can either help or hinder a company’s competitive strategy.

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Top Performance

February 28, 2013

Do you know if your manager considers you a top performer? Every manager wants top performers and most people want to do their very best at work. Requirements for exceptional job performance should not be a mystery on your job. Performance expectations should be clearly communicated, attainable and properly rewarded. How well is that done in your organization?

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Lifetime Balance and Alignment

February 14, 2013

A couple of months ago I took my car to the shop to get four new tires.  I knew that winter was coming and I didn’t want to be caught out on slick or snowy roads with bald tires.  So I went to a place that was advertising a great sale on four tires expecting to leave there having spent under $200.  Of course you know where this story is going…

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Building Organizational Alignment

February 6, 2013

“Alignment is that optimal state in which strategy, employees, customers, and key processes work in concert to propel growth and profits. Aligned organizations enjoy greater customer and employee satisfaction and produce superior returns to shareholders. Aligned companies focus employees and their work on key goals….

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The Strategy Focused Organization

February 1, 2013

The Strategy Focused Organization
How Balanced Scorecard Companies Thrive in the New Environment
By Robert S. Kaplan and David P. Norton

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Set the Vision

January 17, 2013

In understanding the organizational structure, one finds that their success primarily relies on the employees to accomplish the vision and mission of the leadership team.  The vision comes from the leadership team, based on the expectations of the shareholders. The leadership team identifies his/her area of vision ownership and begins to develop their strategies that their team members will complete to implement the vision.

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Flight of the Buffalo

January 11, 2013

Flight of the Buffalo
Soaring to Excellence, Learning to Let Employees Lead
By James A. Belasco and Ralph C. Stayer

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Do You Provide Your Employees A Positive Work Environment?

January 3, 2013

The concept of climate and culture continue to evolve, however, is generally understood to be the organization’s influence on employees motivation and behavior. It includes: organization’s structure, the system of rewards and punishment and the perceived warmth and support of those within the individuals “sphere of touch points”. It includes the formal and informal organizations policies, practices and procedures. It begins with clarity of the organizational vision, mission, values, goals and the accepted manner in attaining these goals. Marcus Buckingham (1999) describes 12 questions to ask to determine if your organization has a productive, positive, warm work environment. How would your employees respond to the following questions:

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Happy New Year!

January 1, 2013

Happy New Year!

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7 Keys to Success (Part 2)

December 31, 2012

Let’s review the 7 keys to success.

Do and Dare
Double Your Failure Rate
Use Your Will
You Need Determination and Commitment
Excellence is Required
Vision is Necessary
Go to Success
We covered the first four keys in an earlier post. We continue here with the last three AND one more to round out the list.

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Merry Christmas!

December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas!

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7 Keys to Success (Part 1)

December 21, 2012

Let’s talk about success.  Take a look at these 7 keys to success:

  • Do and Dare
  • Double Your Failure Rate
  • Use Your Will
  • You Need Determination and Commitment
  • Excellence Is Required
  • Vision Is Necessary
  • Go to Success
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A Leadership Gift for You

December 17, 2012

The holiday season is upon us and most of us have shopped for that special something for family members and friends. We’ve decorated our homes and trimmed our trees. And some of you more ambitious types may have even started baking your favorite holiday treats. And of course we all enjoy that wonderful tradition of wrapping gifts. I usually buy several rolls of wrapping paper just so that the presents under my tree are wrapped in a variety of colors and prints. As the end of the year draws near, I look forward to New Year’s Eve and the promise of a new year and new beginnings. We put a lot of care into preparing for the holidays and ensuring that everything is merry and bright. So I thought it would be fitting to put as much energy into wrapping up our year professionally and preparing for new leadership challenges and opportunities in the New Year.

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A Few Things to Consider as 2013 Approaches

December 10, 2012

Review your career plan
Assess your current position

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Top 10 ways to keep employees engaged leading up to the end of the year

Top 10 ways to keep employees engaged leading up to the end of the year.

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How Do You Measure Success?

December 3, 2012

Wow! It’s December already. Where has the year gone? If you are like me (and many other people), right about now you are beginning to look back over the year and assess how well you’ve done. You might be thinking about your New Year’s resolutions for 2013. Aside from the standard– exercise more, eat a healthier diet, and lose weight–you might also be considering what successes you had in 2012 and how you can do even better in 2013.

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Insourcing vs. Outsourcing

November 26, 2012

Last month HP agreed to transfer 3000 of its employees to General Motors (GM) as GM moves IT operations back “in-house”. Randy Mott (GM, CIO) decided to bring most of the company’s IT work in-house. In fact, GM announced that it will bring most of its IT work back in-house over the next three to five years (~10,000 positions) – a dramatic about-face for the automaker, which was an early adopter of outsourcing and offshoring. While most companies may not be making such major insourcing moves, many are reconsidering the outsource-insource mix.

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How to Keep Up with IT

November 19, 2012

I am a frustrated techno-geek.  During my Air Force career I was a communications officer, which meant I had the privilege of working with some very smart, IT savvy individuals on a daily basis.  So I worked very hard to read, ask questions and try to gain as much technical proficiency as some of my co-workers.  It wasn’t a total waste of time, but it was exhausting.  I never really caught up.

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What’s In the Cloud?

October 30, 2012

Cloud computing is one of the myriad of technologies available today that make our lives “easier”. Cloud computing is said to be the tool which will usher in the age of the IT service-delivery provider (SDP) in a similar manner to Internet communications creating the age of the Internet service provider. Every major Internet vendor, IT vendor and carrier wants to be an SDP. How much upgrading and automation is enough? How do you know?

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Motivation Matters

October 23, 2012

Motivation does not come naturally to everyone, but it can be learned and developed. Your objective as a leader is to develop an environment where your team members can develop the ability to motivate themselves. Create an environment where your employees:

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Project Management – Not For the Faint of Heart

September 23, 2012

Project management is often viewed as a necessary evil. There are many funny (and unattributed) quotes that speak to the complexity of the project management challenge. For example:

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Is It OK to Show Your Heart?

September 3, 2012

Many people are familiar with the hard-charging, take-no-prisoners type of leader. He rarely shows his soft side and you begin to doubt if he even has one! He is forceful, direct, and knows how to “get ‘er done!” But there is another type of leader who is also very effective in a much more understated manner.

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Why Don’t I Have a Mentor?

August 24, 2012

While in ROTC as a cadet, I recall hearing about mentors. I didn’t know better, so when I initially came on active duty, I waited patiently for someone to mentor me. I figured since everything else was nicely organized in a formal program, if I looked long enough, I’d eventually find out where I could sign up and get a mentor. With hindsight I can see I got the whole concept wrong.

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Building Future Leaders

August 7, 2012

“Ten good soldiers wisely led will beat a hundred without a head.”–Euripides

Here’s the notion–business success depends on the quality of the leaders(s) within an organization.  Given the money and incentives lavished upon CEOs, there is a tremendous amount of credibility for this notion, at least at the senior management level.  However, if good leadership truly equates to good business from a CEO perspective, how much of a greater competitive advantage would companies enjoy if they developed leaders throughout the organization?

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Seven Things Global Leaders Know, Do & Believe

August 2, 2012

Most of us have an idea of what being an effective global leader means; however, few take the time to study what these leaders know, do and believe. Some go as far as to know what makes a global leader effective; however don’t take the time to determine if they truly believe the actions these leaders take on a daily basis are relevant to their own professional growth. And even fewer take the time to consistently do what effective global leaders do. It’s not because they don’t want to know, do and believe, it’s because many are so caught up in the trenches of surviving for today – they can’t see anything or do anything else. They are missing the forest because of the trees.

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Ignite Your Leaders to Win! (Tip of the Month)

July 11, 2012

In speaking with CEOs from around the country, one continued theme is expressed – how do I keep my leadership team excited about being a member of our company? There’s no one answer or a magic pill for this; however there are a few thoughts which are easily implemented.

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What is Transformational Leadership?

July 2, 2012

“Inspiring a shared vision is the most efficient way to produce outstanding results.” –Jack Shiefer (taken from The Leadership Challenge)

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Should I Quit or Stick it Out? (Tip of the Month)

June 22, 2012

Too many people wake up on Monday mornings dreading the workday ahead. Not because they don’t like what they do, but rather they don’t like the people they work with or work for. How many times have you heard (or said) “My supervisor is useless” or “If Jim asks me one more dumb question about his own job, I’m going to scream. He’s the senior person around here!” You may even feel like quitting and finding another job just to get away from all the “problem people” you work with.

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Getting Through the Storming of Teams

June 11, 2012

Human beings have organized themselves into teams since squads of cavemen surrounded and killed wooly mammoths. The best teams are passionate about their work – and you can’t forge or force that kind of spirit. It bubbles up from within the hearts, souls and minds of team members. However, as a manager, you can create the emotional conditions from which passion will emerge. These include trust, sharing, camaraderie, commitment, common purpose and confidence.

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Diversity and the Bottom Line (Tip of the Month)

May 30, 2012

Mention the word ‘diversity’ in a company and the reactions you get will be, well, diverse: a knowing wink, attesting to the “yeah, we’ve checked THAT box” attitude; a rolling of the eyes and inward groans, indicating a “we do it because quotas are required” environment; a shrug of the shoulders and a heavy sigh, illustrative of HR’s upcoming annual diversity training requirement, but with no real understanding or concern for why it’s required.

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Managing Conflict and Crises

May 17, 2012

Too often, conflict in the workplace hides like a smoldering fire, waiting to burst into a roaring inferno with the addition of just the tiniest bit of fuel. Everyone can feel the tension, but no one wants to address it. Eventually the conflict begins to affect performance, morale, and employee retention. If this sounds like your workplace, then you have experienced a potential crisis situation! Understanding how to manage this type of situation is the basis of conflict resolution.

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7 Signs Of A Dysfunctional Boss

May 5, 2012

I’m going to go out on a limb here and say the word “dysfunctional” probably describes more people than the word “normal” does. When it comes to CEOs and executives, it’s almost certainly true.

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Top Ten Ways to Retain Your Great Employees – Why Retention? Four Tips for Employee Retention

May 3, 2012

Key employee retention is critical to the long term health and success of your business. Managers readily agree that retaining your best employees ensures customer satisfaction, product sales, satisfied coworkers and reporting staff, effective succession planning and deeply embedded organizational knowledge and learning. If managers can cite these facts so well, why do they behave in ways that so frequently encourage great employees to quit their jobs?

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It’s All About the Team (Tip of the Month)

April 28, 2012

The best advice I ever got as a supervisor was from a very wise flight superintendent. He told me that if I would take care of the people, the mission would take care of itself. He mentioned this to me as he observed me in a moment of insanity frantically trying to figure out how to learn every detail of everyone else’s job. It was one of those ‘what were you thinking?’ moments.  There were easily 30-40 people in seven different disciplines and I didn’t have a clue what any of them did. I was totally out of my depth.

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The Power of Diversity (Survey)

April 13, 2012

Over the past two decades, many organizations have undertaken some form of diversity initiative. In fact, it is estimated that more than 85 percent of Fortune 500 companies have such efforts underway. However, even with a significant commitment of resources–time, money, people and infrastructure–many organizations are not achieving the results they hoped for and are not experiencing the benefits that a diverse workforce and an inclusive organization and initiative promise.

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Avoid the Top 10 Mistakes Managers Make

April 5, 2012

Many managers lack fundamental training in managing people. But, even more importantly, managers lack the values, sensitivity, and awareness needed to interact effectively all day long with people. Skills and techniques are easier to teach, but values, beliefs, and attitudes are much harder to teach – and harder for managers to learn. Yet, these are the underlying issues that will most make managers successful – or not.

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The First Time Manager (Congratulations!! Now what?)

April 4, 2012

Moving from individual contributor to front-line manager for the first time is a significant transition. Today’s business environment often fails to provide the support and leadership development training necessary to aid the front-line leaders during this important transition, often with negative consequences for the entire organization.   Now more than ever, in flatter organizations, more responsibilities have been pushed down to the front-line manager,where the ‘rubber meets the road’.

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Leadership Begins Within (Tip of the Month)

March 24, 2012

I like lists and projects. I’m not sure why, except that the existence of both usually helps me feel as if I’m making progress–simply because they exist. However, I’m constantly reminded that busyness and progress are not synonymous and that some things–especially important things–don’t have projected completion dates. Leadership development is one of those things.

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Step Up And Get Rid of Your Leaders From Hell

March 16, 2012

Four behaviors distinguish bad leaders from average or well regarded leaders:

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Why Leaders Lose Their Way

March 5, 2012

In recent months several high-level leaders have mysteriously lost their way. Dominique Strauss-Kahn, former head of the International Monetary Fund and a leading French politician, was arraigned on charges of sexual assault. Before that David Sokol, rumored to be Warren Buffett’s successor, was forced to resign for trading in Lubrizol stock prior to recommending that Berkshire Hathaway purchase the company. Examples abound of other recent failures:

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To What Degree Does The Job Make The Person

Jobs shape us in many ways, according to respondents to this month’s column.

For example, Sue Stewart said that “…we become our jobs.” Charlie Cullinane went further, saying that “Not only do we become our jobs while doing them but we keep many of these traits even when retired.” This led Illysa to comment, “One more reason we must choose not only our careers but our work places carefully: who do we want to become?” Heidi Olson wondered “if the change in hormones when gaining power is responsible for some of the overly confident and unbelievably nervy things some CEOs and dictators do once in power.”

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The Art of Leadership (The Intrapreneur)

March 3, 2012

Management gurus and theorists persistently seek an impossible formula – the universal recipe for successful management and leadership. Is there truly one perfect formula for leadership?

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What IS Leadership?

February 22, 2012

There are many definitions of leadership, possibly because there are so many different aspects of leadership and so many ways to conceptualize leadership. However, there are common elements that form the core of the phenomenon of leadership: it is a group phenomenon; it involves influence; it is goal directed and action-oriented; and it is a process.

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Negotiation-It’s Non-Negotiable! (Tip of the Month)

February 17, 2012

When I was a lieutenant in the Air Force, I bought my first car. I knew I needed to negotiate to get the best deal I could and I thought I knew what I was doing. I was fresh out of college and truly on my own for the first time. It turns out that I wasn’t a very good negotiator. When I tried to get the salesman to lower the price, he laughed at me. Ok, he didn’t actually laugh at me.

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The Days of “Manager Knows Best” Are Ending

February 1, 2012

To get a glimpse of what tomorrow’s young global managers might be like as leaders, take a look at how today’s young people think about communications.

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Why Some Teams Succeed (and So Many Don’t)

January 26, 2012

Workplace teams have been studied to death in recent years, and the verdicts are in. They’re a success—and a disaster. They lead to big productivity improvements—and they peter out ineffectively. People love ’em. People hate ’em.

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Negotiating Effectively–Is It About the Win/Win?

January 24, 2012

According to Webster’s II New College Dictionary, Third Edition, negotiate is defined as a) to meet and discuss with another in order to reach an agreement; b) to settle by meeting or discussing; c) to transfer title to or ownership of (e.g., notes) to another in exchange for equivalent value. Most of us have negotiated something before. Whether it was a dream job offer or a new car purchase, chances are you walked away wondering if you really got the best deal possible.

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Leadership Problems in Business

January 19, 2012

Increasing costs for materials and utilities with an inability to raise prices on final goods and services due to reduced demand or competition, and competitive pressures arising literally from around the globe, create a difficult enough environment to operate a company. But leadership problems in business can stifle creativity, reduce productivity and cripple a company to the point it can no longer remain viable. These problems stem from a variety of sources, from individual personality conflicts to dysfunctional group dynamics.

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5 key leadership management issues from 2011 to drive success in 2012

January 9, 2012

What a turbulent and unpredictable year 2011 was – upon reflection, 2011 has been a wild roller coaster ride for many, a tough road for others and a walk in the park for very few. So what can we learn from LMA’s 2011 L.E.A.D. Survey of the leadership management landscape? Here are Five Key Issues that have surfaced in 2011 and which must be addressed by leaders and managers to drive success in 2012.

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The Right Stuff (Business Acumen)

December 27, 2011

Top leaders understand how all the elements of business acumen work together – such leaders use their business acumen to make things simpler. They reduce complexity so they can clarify their decision making, test their logic and set forth defined priorities.

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Collected Project Management Wisdom

December 17, 2011

Project management consists of a set of complex and necessary tasks to solve a problem or meet a need. No two projects are the same, so no two projects can or should be managed the same way. However, there are some standard processes and common practices used by project management professionals.

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Who Wants to Be a Project Manager?

November 27, 2011

How important is project management? Is it a case of “failing to plan means planning to fail?” Or is it a mystical blend of timing, finding the right team members, ‘good’ requirements, and a bit of razzmatazz which results in a happy coincidence of customer satisfaction and acceptable project deliverables? While a bit of good fortune never hurts, successful project outcomes are rarely the result of random chance but rather the result of project management best practices. In this survey, we want your feedback and experience to uncover some of the key elements for a successful project outcome.

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How Does the Right/Wrong Paradigm Color Your Experience?

November 20, 2011

There is a set of sunglasses we wear that colors our experiences in the context of right and wrong. When considering this, I am not speaking in terms of morality, but about a person’s experience. More specifically, within this context one person is right and the other person is wrong.

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Does Setting Major Development Goals Work?

November 18, 2011

When it comes to their own development, there’s something irresistibly appealing to leaders about setting stretch goals. Just selecting one feels like an achievement. And the idea that with enough energy, focus, and initiative, meeting a single goal could dramatically improve a whole company and turn an executive into a better, more developed “super leader” — well, who could resist that?

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So why would YOU engage a professional coach for yourself or your team?

Having way too much to do has become a universal truth in the business world. A 40-hour work week is practically considered part-time and most people are handling a workload that used to be managed by two or even three people just a few years ago. Many people are simply overwhelmed by it all. As easy as it would be to blame the employers and companies it’s not really their fault, and fixing it may not even be in their power.

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Are You Ready To Lead?

November 7, 2011

Are you read to lead? To assess your readiness, ask these questions:

  • Does your company select its leaders according to whether they can teach others?
  • Does your firm reward people for teaching?
  • Do your training programs help leaders learn how to teach?
  • Do you as a leader have a teachable point of view? Do I share it?
  • Do you believe that grooming other leaders is a vital component of my job?
  • Do you remain “open to learning”?
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Succession Planning 101–Who’s Up Next?

October 30, 2011

Succession planning, sometimes referred to as talent management or bench strength, gets mixed reviews. It has been said that many succession planning initiatives often fall short of their original intent. How well is it being done in your organization?

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Be Clear with Your Feedback

October 27, 2011

Most managers have good intentions when it comes to delivering feedback to employees. But the reality is that most of them aren’t very good at it. What’s the cause? Few role models combined with few training opportunities.

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It’s Not a Problem…It’s an Opportunity to Excel

October 20, 2011

I became familiar with the phrase opportunity to excel when I was a brand new lieutenant, fresh out of college with “butter bars” and no idea of how to do anything.   I remember at some point I was voluntold for a task. Not familiar with the term voluntold? That is when you are highly encouraged (told) to volunteer for a task. Or, better yet, your boss is at a meeting and he/she volunteers you for a project and tells you about it afterward.  The first time that happened to me, I remember being a little irate.

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Is There a Leadership Crisis in America?

October 15, 2011

If I had to come up with one definition of leadership, it would be the ability to motivate people to work together toward a common goal. Leadership is about uniting, not dividing.
In that context, I’m thinking we have a serious leadership crisis in America.

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Time Versus Money: What We Really Want

October 9, 2011

Would you rather have a job that pays $80,000 a year that lets you get 7.5 hours of sleep a night, or a job that pays $140,000 a year and allows you time for only six hours of sleep a night?

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The 5 Best Ways to Praise Employees

October 8, 2011

Think your “Employee of the Month” program is a great way to recognize performance?

Think again. Praising an employee should:

  • Boost their confidence and self esteem, and
  • Reinforce positive behaviors, and
  • Reward their effort and accomplishment, and
  • Build their motivation and enthusiasm.
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The 10 Rules of Social Media Commentary

October 4, 2011

Chances are you spend more time commenting on blogs, updating, linking and tweeting than you ever imagined you would. We all do. Some post anonymously on blogs, but most of you see it as a means to establish an online presence to network, raise your visibility, and invite business opportunities.

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Brainstorming–How Does That Work, Exactly?

September 26, 2011

Brainstorming is commonly used for creative problem solving. When done well, the results are increased productivity and efficiency, and most importantly, a problem gets SOLVED. Do organizations make good use of this technique? What are some of the best practices?

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Mentoring

September 19, 2011

There are two types of mentoring relationships: formal and informal. Informal relationships spring up independent of the organization. Formal mentoring programs are assigned by the company and may factor in the person’s experience, job duties, potential career path, race/gender/ethnicity/orientation/disability or personality. Their goal is to promote employee engagement and talent development.

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8 Reasons Your Employees Don’t Care

Pay only goes so far. Higher salaries are like the bigger house syndrome: Move into a bigger house and initially it feels roomier, but after awhile larger becomes the new normal.

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Proof That Diversity Drives Innovation

September 15, 2011

In a recent State of the Union address, President Barack Obama mentioned the word “innovation” nine times, more than any other president ever has, according to Fareed Zakaria. This highlights a key point that in this new era, rife with volatility and ambiguity, innovation is critical in sustaining organic growth and securing success in a globally competitive environment. We know that there exists a strong connection between innovation and diversity and inclusion; our challenge is to help our leaders and fellow professionals understand that connection.

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Taking A Look Before You Leap

September 14, 2011

Many of our clients are scrambling to reinvent themselves in this challenging economy and the self-knowledge gained from knowing personality type gives them a clear advantage. Wouldn’t it be great to receive a guide for revamping your career?

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Top 10 Movies For Executives To Watch

September 8, 2011

Citizen Kane, the story of newspaper tycoon, Charles Foster Kane, one of the richest men in the world. The film tells his story through a series of flashbacks from the people closest to him.  The movie details his trail to fame and then his ultimate fall from it. Citizen Kane is a must see for CEO’s and executives, with guidelines on how to stay at the top.

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Good Job and Well Done!

September 6, 2011

There are a multitude of rewards programs that encourage customer loyalty. What about the other side of that transaction — the outstanding employee? How well do organizations do when it comes to recognizing and encouraging the best and brightest? Saying “good job” or “well done” is certainly the least that should be done–is it enough?

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Writing It Down Means Never Having To Say I’m Sorry

September 1, 2011

Dear Family and Friends,
For over 40 years, people have known that I would do what I promised unless the funeral director had me!
This is due to my beloved cards, one for each day of the week that I have used for over 63 years. (I wasn’t always as careful in the earlier years!)
This involves two things:
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Looking For A Job? You will be Googled!

August 17, 2011

Today, it is common practice to Google anyone you have not met before. When “googled”, does your profile appropriately describe YOU and how you want to be perceived?
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5 Ways To Build Rapport

August 2, 2011

Luckily, there are five simple, yet powerful ways to improve rapport with others.

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Customer Service – The Final Frontier?

July 26, 2011

Benjamin Franklin noted that “Well done is better than well said”. While it may be common knowledge that organizations who have a customer service strategy retain more customers than those who do not, as a “customer” do you sometimes feel that many businesses never received that memo?  Has customer service become the final frontier?

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Not Just Something to Tweet

July 11, 2011

Early in my career I used to think that purpose, vision, and mission statements were basically just corporate catch phrases. They hung on the walls in the office and became the tag line on emails from senior management. Now, keep in mind that I was just a few years out of college and I thought I knew it all! Doesn’t that sound just like your average recent college grad? I understood that it was important to clearly define the organization’s purpose and to have a well written, actionable vision and mission statement.

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Purpose, Mission, Vision–That Which Doesn’t Change?

June 27, 2011

Jack Welch said “Good business leaders create a vision, articulate the vision, passionately own the vision, and relentlessly drive it to completion.” An organization with a clearly articulated purpose, mission and vision will not be derailed by the ‘unimportant urgencies’ and will stay focused on the core business values. For successful businesses, this is the thing that does not change.

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Building and Leading High Performance Teams

June 13, 2011

You don’t have to be Michael Jordan or Mia Hamm to have the skills you need to build and lead high performing teams.

When a sports team is working well together, it can feel like magic. We’ve all experienced it, either as a team member or as a fan. Fortunately, you do not have to be Michael Jordan or Mia Hamm to have the skills you need to build and lead high performing teams in your organization.

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The 10 Commandments of Empowerment

June 7, 2011

The 10 Commandments of Empowerment

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What The Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast

June 1, 2011

Mornings are a mad-cap time in many households. Everyone’s so focused on getting out the door that you can easily lose track of just how much time is passing. I’ve had hundreds of people keep time logs for me over the past few years (you can see some of mine here and here), and I’m always amazed to see gaps of 90 minutes or more between when people wake up and when they start the commute or school car pool.

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Working Without Walls-Virtual Teams Survey

May 27, 2011

In our global economy, teams may often be geographically dispersed. Additionally, by leveraging the power of the Internet and global communications, we now see a lot more ‘teleworking’ and telecommuting by employees. Both of these factors bring a new dynamic to the whole concept of teamwork.

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The Power of Motivation

May 17, 2011

Many managers believe–wrongly–that inadequate workers choose to perform badly. They surmise that employees could do better if they wished. In reality, the two greatest reasons for nonperformance are that employees do not know what they are supposed to do or do not know how to do it. In most other cases, nonperformance is related to:

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5 Reasons to Send Thank You Letters

May 11, 2011

Think of thank-you letters as a self-marketing tool and a critical component of your job-search strategy. The time you invest crafting a targeted thank-you letter after an interview is time well spent, and it will help you create a credible and efficient search.

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How To Build Trust When Your Team Doesn’t Know Each Other

May 6, 2011

We know that trust is absolutely critical to team and project success. It’s always been hard to build and maintain, but when you don’t work in the same physical location it can feel even more difficult. The good news is that we know the three components of trusting teams. The trick is to make them work remotely

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What Motivates You?

April 27, 2011

Excellent question, right? Robbins & Judge (2010) define motivation as “the processes that account for an individual’s intensity, direction and persistence of effort toward attaining a goal”. In other words, what moves us to expend that extra effort to make sure the job gets done? When it comes to organizational performance, there may be times when a higher salary or more time off is not the answer to motivate someone to do more–to meet or exceed organizational objectives.

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Has Technology Got a Hold on You?

April 11, 2011

Have you thought recently about how tied we are to technology? You wake up in the morning and reach over to turn off your alarm clock which is playing your favorite tune on your IPOD docked to it. Next your reach over to your nightstand and grab the TV remote and scroll through the numerous cable channels trying to decide which station you want to watch. Your cell phone rings and you grab your Bluetooth wireless headset and head into the bathroom to take care of a few morning “necessities”. As you think about what you are going to wear to work you remember that you wanted to be sure and record Oprah and the NCAA Sweet Sixteen game coming on tonight. So you quickly set your DVR to record both programs as you mentally plan to order a pizza on your iPhone on your way home from work tonight.

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Ten Core Factors of A Leadership Team

April 4, 2011

There are six critical success factors that must be in place before any group begins to function as a leadership team.

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Can We Talk?

March 25, 2011

For our technology issue, let’s borrow that famous phrase from Joan Rivers, and focus on the most ubiquitous device of the 21st century–the cell phone. Seemingly overnight, it has become the single ‘don’t leave home without it’ item to have on the go.   And you don’t even have to talk to communicate–you can text or update/check your social media network status. You can use it to stay organized, get informed, get directions–the list goes on! For almost anything you can think of that you might need on the go–there’s an app for that!

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Leadership Lessons From Geese

March 23, 2011

Lesson 1: As each goose flaps its wings it creates an “uplift” for the birds that follow. By flying in a “V” formation, the whole flock adds 71% greater flying range than if each bird flew alone. People who share a common direction and sense of community can get where they are going quicker and easier because they are traveling on the thrust of one another.

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No Regrets

March 21, 2011

What if you could live life without regret from this moment on? Would you want to? Do you think it’s possible? Would you want that? Living a life without regret equates to living a life without limitations, with unlimited potential.

Five things I wish a million people knew about regret.

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The Wow Factor: Impressive Job Candidate Qualities

March 20, 2011

The employment market is saturated with various resources for job candidates. While some of them offer consistent advice (always send a cover letter, tailor your resume and wait for the employer to bring up salary), the truth is that conflicting information exists.

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From the Top, Down–Tying Your Strategy to the Vision

March 8, 2011

To unify a company’s efforts, CEOs, Department Leaders and Team Leaders must take the time to review the strategic vision and connect it with how their teams are assisting in the achievement of the vision. The best of leaders are able to tie an individual’s performance objective to at least one of the company’s strategic objectives.

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Thinking BIG!

February 25, 2011

If you spoke with 10 people and ask what prevents them from thinking big, you would probably obtain a list of 50 reasons why they and others should not have big thoughts.

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Planning and the Bottom Line–What do YOU think?

February 15, 2011

We need your inputs and opinion, for the March edition of “Based on Your Experience”.  The topic for March is “Planning & the Bottom Line”.  We’ve incorporated the discussion this month into a survey.

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Creating a Holistic Approach to Work Life Balance

February 1, 2011

Ask yourself hard questions. Introspection takes guts. You need to determine how serious your problem is. Should you just wean yourself off evening e-mail, or should you consider a career change? Where are you going in life? What are your priorities? “Lots of creative thinking shows up when the priorities are clear” (Wooldridge, 2010).

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It’s About Time

January 31, 2011

Look at your life in five categories: spiritually, mentally, physically, financially and socially. Examine the goals you have for each of these areas. In order to achieve the balance you need to have a long life, what would you do differently?

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Make Time for Time Management

January 24, 2011

Many of us suffer from a hurry up and get it done mentality. We believe that we can get more done by speeding up everything and multi-tasking on everything. While driving we’re conducting business on our phones, we eat while working on assignments, we listen to our family members while reading email . The list can go on! We have become a “get it all done today” society. Therefore, the question we have to ask is: Are we setting ourselves up for long-term success or long-term problems?

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Work-Life Balance = Retention

January 18, 2011

We need your OPINION, for the February edition of “Based on Your Experience”.  The question this month focuses on work-life balance.  In about 250 words, please respond to this:

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Make Your Environment Make You Successful

January 1, 2011

Make Your Environment Make You Successful

  1. Be environment conscious – just as the body diet makes the body . mind diet makes the mind.
  2. Make your environment work for you, not against you. Don’t let suppressive forces – the negative, you -can’t do it people – make you think defeat.
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Maximizing Productivity: What’s It All About?

December 10, 2010

Paul Meyer states that “productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning and focused effort”. How do you gauge productivity? Is it really doing more with less? Take a look at the following short list of ways to increase/maximize productivity. Which 2-3 do you consider to be most useful? What would you add to the list? What shouldn’t be on the list at all?

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Tip of the Month – Life Balance

December 1, 2010

Most find their lives out of balance during the holiday seasons – here is a quick check list to use to rebalance your life.

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Innovation-Spark of Genius or Way of Life?

November 15, 2010

Innovation can be defined as “the creation, development, and implementation of a new product, process or service with the goal of improving efficiency, effectiveness or competitive advantage.”  How are innovation and change related?  Is innovation “natural”? Are we all innovators by nature?  What processes/practices/methodologies must be put into place to allow organizations to be innovative–to both adapt to and influence the world?

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Tip of the Month – What Did You Say?

November 5, 2010

Conflict exists when interdependent parties believe that their needs, goals or ideas are incompatible or not being met. Becoming self-aware of how you handle conflict begins your journey toward self-mastery.  With self-mastery, you can use established principles to guide your behavior. You will learn to separate people from the problem. One objective in self-mastery is becoming an effective listener; the six levels of listening range from passive listening, which is hardly listening at all, to empathic listening, which is listening with your ears, mind, eyes and heart. Using Van Slyke’s (1999) concept, this month’s tip surrounds self-identifying what type of listener you are:

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The Vision-Execution Gap–Crack or Chasm?

October 15, 2010

Vision is the driving force behind innovation and the creation of new business opportunities, as well as a critical component for organizational change. It can be generalized that many visionary leaders lack the native skills to focus on the details necessary for successful execution.

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Tip of the Month – Increasing Productivity

October 4, 2010

As the year is coming to an end and the holiday season is right around the corner, many of you (and your team members) are struggling with maintaining and increasing productivity. Here are some thoughts on maintaining and increasing productivity!

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Using Social Networking Sites To Assist You In Getting The Job You Desire

August 1, 2010

Susan Smith lost her job on a Friday afternoon. Eleven days later she had a new one. With nearly 1 in 10 people out of work and the typical job search lasting 12 weeks, how did the Dallas based software architect pull it off

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The New Leadership Skills You Need!

July 19, 2010

The executive job market intelligence report states that the 21st Century Leader must become more efficient in: company operations, managing plans and objectives, cutting cost, establishing vision and strategy and leading (a CGI addition), managing and developing people.

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