Personal Growth Illustration

Personal Growth IllustrationOne core competency for all leaders is understanding how to coach and develop others. This is a particularly challenging skill for any individual promoted to a leadership role based on performance as an individual contributor. Many individuals become first-time managers and have never had any formal training for how to coach and develop others, so they miss a critical step in learning how to lead. Another key step in the process is remembering to prioritize self-development. We can’t develop others if we’re not also developing our own skills.

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Photo of Value Proposition

Photo of Value PropositionDeveloping a value proposition is one of the most important exercises one can do in a sales or marketing role. Clearly defining the value one can offer to the intended customer base and the ways in which they are superior to competitors’ offerings is the foundation for all messaging and outreach. Similarly, HR teams also develop an Employee Value Proposition to articulate the benefits of joining the organization and is used to attract and retain talent. For both the organizational and employee version of the value proposition, it really boils down to defining the essence of the organization and what it can offer in return for commitment/loyalty as a customer or employee. Additionally, the thought process required to develop a value proposition forces the organization to take a hard look at what it really offers and how it compares to competitors. Naturally, in the process of ensuring the Value Proposition is competitive, that also creates clear pathways for improvement.Read More

Photo of masked cell user

Photo of masked cell userYou are what you eat. At a young age we’re taught that in order to be physically healthy, we must be mindful of what we put in our bodies. If we eat high calorie, sugar-filled, fatty foods, our body will lack the vitamins and nutrients we need to function effectively. However, we are so much more than what we eat. We are what we consume.

Much like the way our body absorbs and processes food, we absorb and process everything we see, think, and feel. When we surround ourselves with positive thinkers and problem solvers that challenge us to become better, we are inclined to mentally align with those people. When we are exposed to new cultures or the arts, our worldview tends to expand, and we become more open to new, unique experiences. When we intentionally surround ourselves with positive influences, we unlock powerful opportunities to enrich our mindset. Unfortunately, we are equally affected by negative influences.

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Resilient plant growing in concrete

Resilient plant growing in concrete I failed last week. It was a major failure.

It was the kind of failure that forces you to simply shut down the computer and walk away for a bit just so you can remind yourself to breathe. And while the failure would have been gut-wrenching on its own, it was a very public failure that came at a time when my team needed me the most. While I’ve experienced loss in my career before, this experience felt different. I had two choices. I could either try to forget what happened and hope my colleagues would as well, or I could reframe the situation and try to turn it into something positive.

I chose the latter. I decided to work on becoming more resilient in spite of my emotions.

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Photo of leader on phone

Photo of leader on phoneThe pandemic has affected virtually every aspect of our lives in ways we never could have imagined. From mandated closures to lay-offs, furloughs, and remote working, all our strategic plans were turned upside down throughout 2020. Among the many casualties are the time and resources designated for training and development.  With budget cuts, office closures, and restricted travel, few organizations have delivered instructor-led coaching or supported their employee’s learning and development needs effectively.

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Photo of 5 Star Performance

Photo of 5 Star PerformanceIt’s that time of year when the days become shorter and the leaves begin to change colors. And while I love the cool crisp air and pumpkin-spice everything, it is also a sign that something spooky is lurking around the corner. No, not Halloween—it’s annual performance review time. The ghosts and goblins of goal-setting past are ready to remind you what a long and exhausting year it has been.

This is a perfect year to consider an alternative to the annual appraisal. The pandemic flipped 2020 upside down, and the goals you set in January are likely unachievable or simply do not apply to the current business needs. Additionally, most performance appraisals are traditionally tied to bonuses or merit increases. If your business is not in a position to offer bonuses or merit increases this year, continuing with the traditional performance review will be like salt in the wound for high performing employees. It will be considered an exercise with no beneficial outcome. We’ve all had to pivot and identify new ways of working this year, so it’s a great year to toss out the old 5-point rating scale and find a more impactful use of your time.

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