Publications

Laughter has been found to be incredibly beneficial to live longer, be healthier, and reduce stress. Smiling is good too, especially when it’s genuine. In the case of the business environment, we’ll go one step further and say a sense of humor can make all the difference when it comes to handling stress, managing deadlines and being a leader among colleagues.

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Profit is important, but it’s not the only indicator of a company’s health and well-being. All too often, profit is used as the primary source indicating success. We’re not saying numbers are not important- without them you don’t have a company. But for executives at Wells Fargo, the consequences of focusing on just the numbers seems to be bubbling up in a less than stellar way. For anyone in sales, this story may sound familiar. You’re working hard to fill your pipeline, get meetings, close deals and finally collect the all-mighty, highly coveted commission check.

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Relationships and collaboration. These two items are key components of the most successful departments, projects, committees and organizations. On a social scale, it’s like the perfect dinner party when there is just the right mix of people, conversation, and a perfectly timed meal. We don’t always know where the perfect mix will be, professionally or socially, but when it’s found amazing things can happen.

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Almost no one starts a job, or a career, looking for or thinking about ways to get fired. And while not the most pleasant subject to discuss when it comes to work, people do get fired. Often times, it’s not just one event or one issue that gets someone fired, nor does it happen in one day. It’s a cumulative process with a bad result; but one which could have been avoided if one knew what to do or was more adept at recognizing warning signs. Here are just five common causes of getting fired.

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Great ideas. They are the cornerstone of innovation, inspiration and change. They can make our days more productive, our lives easier, and things that were previously thought of as unattainable, possible. While we don’t have control over when a great idea will strike, we do have a responsibility to ourselves and our colleagues to explore them.

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Leaders are expected to accomplish a variety of success oriented objectives in a business environment. But if they are constantly bogged down in the minutia of day to day operational decisions, it not only takes away from the planning and building of future initiatives, but also stops productive workflow dead in its tracks. There are two reasons why this is bad for business: one is for the growth of the business and the other is directly related to a positive human resources experience for your employees. With leadership initiatives focused on helping employees to work independently, it becomes easier to be productive and have happy employees at the same time.

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In the history of the successes and failures of businesses, size does not matter. The behemoths have just as much risk of failure as any medium to smaller sized company and success is not measured just by profits, nor is it just by growth. Success is agility, retention, and sometimes the result of reinvention which is driven by either marketplace, technology, or competition. But what happens when companies try to reverse stagnant or negative growth, and fail? Did they miss the opportunity to reinvent themselves? Did they try to reinvent, but in the wrong marketplace? Was the leadership looking to make changes only through external sources and not through internal adjustments? Regardless of the why, when giants fall, everyone notices.  The most recent behemoth to fall, or in business-speak suffer acquisition, is Yahoo Inc. Once a part of the triad of internet giants, it’s now an acquisition for Verizon.

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Most people appreciate the differences in roles and responsibilities between themselves and their leaders, but that recognition needs to be continuously nurtured and acknowledged in order to avoid feelings of animosity or disrespect. For example, a leader may have slightly different working hours from the rest of the staff, but what may not be known is that the leader spends a lot of time working on large scale projects away from traditional office time. Perceptions exist and whether right or wrong, still need to be managed. One way to manage them is leading by example in the areas in which we have control.
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The Cloud. It’s a great place to store photos, backup your contacts, get directions, and access email from just about anywhere. We use it every day, even when we don’t realize it. It’s become a resource for productivity and storage in a time when we’ve move more toward digital environments than ever before. In the professional world, the cloud has helped to change office workflow by improving collaborative efforts among teams. With chat rooms, shared files and documents, and the ability to share anything almost instantly from a phone, what does collaboration really mean? For us, it’s about more than sharing notes.

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The beauty of having a career for any extended period of time is that you are constantly learning and improving just through the active task of overcoming the challenges you face in the regular course of doing your job. While all solutions to all challenges may not work perfectly every time, and it’s likely they won’t, there is always something learned and then referenced for future. But what about growth? How do you keep doing your job and growing in useful ways? How do you keep your job challenging for yourself and something more than task accomplishment?

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