Procrastinating by liaoqinmei


									              Career Strategies

 Today's work culture expects us to multitask, run from one project to
 the next, and constantly be on the go. The urge to procrastinate
 indicates your brain is overtired, overstressed, and needs to slow
 down. Indulge and take a time out. You'll come back refreshed, and
 better able to focus on the tasks at hand.

Being Bored

We equate being crazy busy with being important. Allowing yourself to
be bored is frowned upon. Yet folks who allow themselves the space and
time to be bored have more mind space to be creative, come up with
ideas, and solve problems.

   Saying "No"
   Most of us feel like we have to say "yes" all the time -- yes to our co-
   workers, yes to our supervisors, yes to our friends. If you're
   wondering why you don't have the hours in the day to complete all of
   the things you've committed to, take stock of what you've said "yes"
   to. Learning how to graciously say "no" to things that ultimately
   don't matter will free up the time you need to focus on the things
   that will contribute to your success.

Ignoring Your Weaknesses
The typical job review focuses 10% on your strengths, and 90% on the
weaknesses you "need" to improve. Instead of focusing on your
weaknesses, ignore them and focus on your strengths. Serena Williams'
obvious strength is her ability to play tennis. How many Grand Slams
do you think she would have won if she had spent time focusing on her

Doing Less

Today's work culture tells us we should do more, more, more. Some of
us pile so much on our plates there's no way we can do justice to them
all. So take some stuff off your plate. Remember the adage, "Jack of all
trades, master of none."

Leaving Early

Instead of being the first one to unlock the doors and the last one to lock
them, make a point of leaving early to do an activity you enjoy, or to
spend time with family or friends. Creating balance in your life will allow
you to recharge your batteries and return to the office refreshed, and
that will show in your work.

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            Career Strategies
Giving In to Distractions

Feeling like you should avoid the chitchat at the water cooler?
Turning down lunch invitations so you can get more work done?
Don't resist distractions if you're in the mood for them. When your
brain is begging to engage in other activities aside from work, give in,
within reason. Allowing distractions will give some parts of your brain
a rest, while engaging other parts.

Tuning In to Technology

Take a short break and play a computer game, watch a video, check
out your favorite news sites, or spend a few minutes social
networking. Just a couple of minutes of alternate activity can get dull
brain synapses firing up again.

Stressing Out

 It's okay to feel a little bit stressed. As a matter of fact, a small
amount of stress, such as the kind of stress you experience when you
place yourself in a challenging situation, can keep you alert,
energized, and ensure you perform your best. Just make sure to
moderate stress levels; high levels of stress are not good for your


Go ahead. Close your eyes and imagine what could be. Not only does
daydreaming create a respite from the current grind, it also fosters
ideas, creativity, and ultimately growth. Imagining things is an
integral step to accomplishing things.

Getting Angry
Sure, you should always maintain a professional demeanor at work,
and that means no yelling, no screaming, and no swearing. But that
doesn't mean you can't get angry and blow off steam. Letting your
emotions out can result in feelings of increased control, confidence,
and ultimately a positive attitude. Just be careful how you do it. Vent
in a private area where others can't hear you, or write your feelings
down on paper.

Being Messy
Obsessively neat people spend time and effort on order that could be better
spent on more important tasks. It probably won't surprise you to learn that
moderately messy folks are more creative than their cleaner counterparts,
but did you also know they are more efficient? Of course, complete disarray
is never okay. Schedule regular times to tidy up, but let things go in between.
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                                      Career Strategies

                     What Not to Say to Your Boss
        Think before you speak‖ is always a good policy, and in the workplace the maxim could be further
refined to ―think before you blurt out something to your boss that could hurt your career.‖ We checked in
with some bosses, and came up with this list of 15 phrases bosses definitely don‘t want to hear:

1. “I’m only doing this job for the money.”
       No boss wants to hear that your sole motivation for showing up is your paycheck. She may know
that money is your motivation, and you may know she knows, but it‘s still better left unsaid.

2. “I’m broke/in debt/one step away from bankruptcy.”
       Your financial woes are not your boss‘s concern. Period.

3. “I’m going to quit after I (fill in the blank).”
        No matter how noble your future plans are -- you may be saving to start your own company or go to
grad school, for example -- it‘s usually best to keep those plans to yourself or to refer to them only vaguely.
If your boss knows there is a definite end date to your employment, she may start to shop around for your
replacement before you are ready to leave.

4. “I partied a little too hard last night.”
        Buck up and get through the day with some ibuprofen, extra undereye concealer and coffee. But
don‘t share the sordid details of your night on the town with your boss. He‘s just as likely to react with
(unspoken) disdain as sympathy.

5. “It’s not my fault.”
        Are you a whiny 8-year-old or a take-charge professional? Assume responsibility and take steps to
fix a problem that you did, in fact, create. And if you are being wrongly blamed for a problem, saying ―let‘s
get to the bottom of this‖ or ―what can we do to make it right?‖ is much more effective than saying ―it‘s not
my fault.‖

6. “I’m bored/this job is boring.”
        Didn‘t your mother ever tell you that only boring people get bored? If you‘re constantly twiddling
your thumbs, ask for extra work and be as specific as you can. And if you‘re busy but think your assigned
tasks are less-than-stimulating, start strategizing about how you can get the job you want, either within your
company or elsewhere.

7. “My job is too easy.”
      Sure, you may think a monkey could do your job. But don‘t give your boss any ideas -- your
company could probably pay a monkey less than it pays you.

8. “I can’t work with so and so. I hate him.”
        Involving your boss in personality conflicts should always be your last resort. So unless you are
being threatened, scapegoated, encouraged to participate in unethical behavior, or your colleague or
customer is engaged in other egregious workplace conduct, try to work it out between yourselves first.

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                                      Career Strategies
9. “I can’t do that because of my other job.”
        In your boss‘s mind, a second job is not a valid excuse for why you can‘t stay late, work extra hours
or finish a project on time. She may question your priorities, and rightly so.

10. “Oh my Gawd! How did you do this job before the Internet/text messaging/Skype?”
      Although not a cardinal workplace sin, making your boss feel old will not score you any points.

11. Sigh. Grimace. Eye roll. Wretching noises.
       Actions can speak louder than words. A poker face and silence are golden when you‘re displeased
with your boss.

12. “Do it yourself!”
       No need for explanation. Just never say this. Ever.

13. “It’s always been done this way.”
        You don‘t want to gain a reputation as an inflexible dinosaur, so keep an open mind about how you
do your work. And if you‘re convinced that a new way of doing things is going to harm your company,
present your case without using ―because that‘s the way we‘ve always done it‖ to support your position.

14. “Let me set you up with...”
        Avoid the urge to play matchmaker for your single boss. The potential benefit is far outweighed by
the potential risk. For that matter, any socializing with your boss (even something as simple as befriending
him on Facebook) can cause you to share too much information, so consider limiting social interactions

15. “Sorry, I must have drifted off.”
       C‘mon, wake up! If you‘re caught with your eyes closed, feign deep concentration rather than admit
you were dozing.

By Megan Malugani, Monster Contributing Writer

                      Career Strategy: Be The Glue
       ―Be the glue‖ has to do with your role in the company, but not the one that is detailed in the job
description. Being the glue isn‘t about what anyone has written down for you. It‘s the job you work your
way into as part of a career strategy. It‘s a way of dedicating a piece of yourself to your success; and to the
success of your boss, your department and your company. But let me warn you about a few things first
because I know a number of you that are ―the glue‖ now, or have been in the past and are comfortable in the
role. You haven‘t seen it as a career strategy, you just do it.

The warnings:

1. You aren’t really appreciated. In fact, very few people know the unique role that you play in the
office. Even though you are highly aware of the problems you prevent and the stability that your efforts
provide the team. Sometimes your boss may not even recognize what you are doing.
2. You won’t get paid for it. It‘s outside your official job description. And likely won‘t be identified on
your objectives for the year. So any potential bonus will still be tied to your core responsibilities.
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                                     Career Strategies
3. You don’t get promoted. In some ways you‘ve created a small cocoon of stability. You‘ve become so
good at a job that it would be too painful to lose you. Glue is sticky.
        But here‘s the problem. You love playing this role. There is tremendous personal satisfaction in
keeping the ship afloat; keeping customers happy, and not letting things fall through the cracks. So you‘ll
probably keep doing it. Even with the above warnings. It‘s in your blood. And I love you for it. So here
are a few ways to continue being yourself. Create a bit more positive PR and the beginnings of a career

Be Proactive About New Projects: For example, if you decide to be the informal owner of the price list
and take pride in catching errors, suggesting updates or format improvements. Why not suggest that as a
permanent role for yourself? Assuming no one else already has that job. If someone does and you still want
to play the role, offer your help formally to the person. Everyone appreciates extra eyes and ears.
Assuming your fixes go to them and not to others (could embarrass the formal owner).

Tell People What You Are Doing: If you see a problem about to happen. And notice that no one is else is
on it. Go ahead and fix it. But don‘t let the day pass without making sure the person most likely to
appreciate the catch hears about it. And depending on your company and it‘s communication culture, that
may be your boss. If the company is more open, you can communicate it directly to a cross-functional head.
You are not bragging here. It is an FYI that a problem was avoided. And perhaps an opportunity to share
other ideas to improve a process.

Don’t Let Too Long Go By: If you‘ve been the glue for a long time, you are in a tougher spot. When you
let people know what you are doing, it might be met with ―Great and thanks‖. The longer you are doing an
informal leadership role, the less it will be overtly appreciated. There‘s a nit of human nature in there, I
think. People practice complacent appreciation. If you decide to take on a new role on your own, make
sure you begin highlighting your contributions right away.

Be The Glue In The Most Public Way Possible: And here are the best places. Consumer or customer
facing departments tend to get the most attention. If you take care of the the consumer (the one spending
money with you) or the customer (the one providing cash flow), you will have more exposure. Sales people
will love you. The CFO will smile at you. And so will the marketing department. Especially in this new
era of social media where consumers and customers have an increasingly louder voice. Other important
places to be the glue? How about a nice cost savings or other type of efficiency. Reducing or preventing
costs pay big dividends.

Get Your Informal Responsibilities Written Into Your Official Responsibilities: Find a job no one
owns or one that needs to be added and get it added to your official list. You are more likely to be rewarded
and appreciated for something that is a part of your formal responsibilities. And when the informal role is
now obvious and of value to your boss. Helps their career strategy as well. And maybe it‘s a job you love
but isn‘t loved by its current owner.

Teach Someone New To Be Your Replacement Glue: If you‘ve shown an ability to keep things running
efficiently. If you are indispensable. You need to make sure that you can be safely promoted. By making
sure someone can become the glue after you‘ve moved up. Find others in your department with a similar
need or pride in being a safety net. Or offer to help your boss write a formal job description and hire them.

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                                        Career Strategies
Learn A Key Skill That Lets You Be More Credible: If your informal role is in helping sales get ready
for presentations, become a Powerpoint expert. Keeping projects on time and on budget? Learn Microsoft
project. The more you can formalize your tools, the more people will see and appreciated your skills. As
more than just a small thing you do to help out.
        Does this describe you or someone that has worked for you in the past? If so, how have you worked
through the issues I‘ve identified? And how do you suggest someone get appreciation for their informal
role? And build a career strategy.

Tim‘s Strategy for November 15, 2010

    The Key to Career Resilience: Know Yourself
        Being valuable to your company won‘t provide job security. But knowing yourself to create career
resilience is vital today. For years I‘ve taught people how to develop from the ―inside out‖ to build
confidence and success in their career strategy. As many are finding in our downsized world, when the
―what‖ they do (role, title, skills) vanishes – they‘re challenged with: ―If I‘m not that, then what or who am
I?‖ As a career consultant in high tech during the boom years I saw people succeed, grow careers, obtain
rewards, and often develop lifestyles in line with success achieved. When positions or programs were
eliminated, while confident in their skills and knowledge, people were at odds to find a ‗second act‘,
transferable skills, or motivated interests.
        Makes sense – when busy working we‘re ‗heads down‘, focused on what ‗is‘, not what‘s coming or
not (trends). We lead busy personal lives leaving little time and often no perceived need to plan for the
‗what if‘s‘. Well, plainly speaking, now the rubber‘s met the road. Knowing yourself, fully, is key to
navigating the present and future. While job search strategies are crucial, your greatest career strategy is self
knowledge. A house without a foundation crumbles. A career strategy ‗house‘, without a solid foundation of
self knowledge, is vulnerable to all the elements. Greater knowledge, e.g. strengths, motivators, what makes
you ‗tick‘, values, creates more choice, building career resilience.

Think about it this way—where would you prefer to sit in your ‗Career Car‘:
       - Driver (you‘re at the controls)
       - Passenger (helps driver, but has no controls)
       - Kids in backseat (headsets and texting – just ‗along for the ride‘), or last, but not least . . .
       - Trunk (no vision, trapped, no choice).

        Your career strategy actions are designed to align knowledge of yourself with your target sectors or
roles. And today, more than ever, you have to know the ‗fit‘ better than anyone – well before the application
and interviews. We don‘t know if today‘s promising industries will propel the workforce: e.g., Green
technology, media tools creating ‗just in time‘ efficiencies and information transfer. But one constant
remains – you must be prepared, knowledgeable and strategic. There‘s truth in the phrase: ―No one knows
you better than yourself‖. But when we‘re concerned, anxious or depleted, we forget that axiom – and if
remembered, we no longer believe it. Commit to getting (reacquainted) with yourself. That‘s part one. Part
two: It‘s not only what you know about yourself – it‘s what you do with it.

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        Learn to articulate with impact in ‗sound bites‘, and expanded conversations (networking,
interviews), then use the wealth of your inventory to target related professions, positions and industries.
Ask yourself tough questions: ―Have I bench-marked myself? Given my style of working, values, goals – is
this role or culture right for me? If not, what would the ideal one look like?‖ Not having answers to these
and other questions is an accident waiting to happen – leaving you in the ―trunk‖ status vs. resilient with
        Yes, there‘s competition. Yes, it‘s tougher to penetrate the world of connecting as many people are
tapped out with requests to help others network. But if you tell your story succinctly and intelligently
(demonstrating understanding of self and research of targeted areas), you‘ll stand out from those making
requests but offering few compelling reasons for their network to follow through. You can‘t lean on
relationships alone. Bottom line, the best person to help you succeed, the one you can depend on over and
over again – is you.
        Stop, slow down, take stock of what you know about yourself, identify gaps, and get the right
resources to help yourself- they‘re plentiful. The good news, promised above, is that once you commit to
self discovery – never stop. We‘re all evolving, learning, emerging (unless you‘re hibernating). Keep up to
date with yourself- not just the outer world. Then connect the dots, do the homework and keep learning.
Being a continuous learner is the strongest key to self resilience and your greatest ally in building
sustainable career resilience. Enjoy the journey – YOU are the main attraction!

By Lenore Mewton is a proven career coach, author, career assessment certified and resume expert. Known
for her commitment to clients, she builds confidence and fosters career resilience. Her Fast Track Job
Search Guide is now available for purchase.

                       When you find your next job
You can do one of two things:

1. You can view your arrival with a stoic face. And say to yourself: ―Job well done‖. Nary a wink or
bright smile there, but what fits your personality, and is consistent with your careful approach to living this
part of your life.

2. You can celebrate. I‘m not suggesting you celebrate with a rave of epic proportions; but rather a proper
celebration of this time in your life; to recognize its impact on your career and on your life; and to take a
few minutes to appreciate those around you that have played a role in your transition. Some of you may
wonder about the use of the word ―arrival‖ since almost everyone uses ―landing or landed‖ to describe their
escape from the job search process. I‘ve always preferred the term ―arrival‖ since ―landing‖ sounds like
you‘ve just returned from a bumpy flight. And while that may better describe your job search journey, to
me ―arriving‖ sounds more like something to celebrate; recognition of your completing a successful effort;
having learned a few things along the way; and allowing yourself to be changed by the experience.

So, when the day comes, here are four ways you can celebrate your arrival at a new job in style:

1. Send out a new job arrival announcement. Most of you know to do this. And most of you know to
wait until at least your first day. In case of a last minute snafu with the new job, offer or position. But once
you are sure (few weeks), send out a note to introduce your new role and company to everyone who played
a role in your job search. Everyone loves sending this announcement. And you should. It feels good.

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                                      Career Strategies
2. Share your experience with others. Your job search has taught you a lot. You made mistakes and
learned from them. You would be amazed just how much time you can save others by writing down your
best practices and resources that helped you. And your view on what events, tools or services are worth
paying for. I created a free download to help you do this. I called it Shortcuts™. It is pass-along career
advice, because if you do a good job you will help more people than you think. Good stuff gets passed

3. Recognize and thank your network. Of course you can do this in your announcement and to some
extent in your version of ShortCuts. But I am guessing that there are 20-30 people who played a bigger role.
And it‘s hard to include everyone on an e-mail, so what about having a party at your house, or at a local
restaurant. I‘m not saying you even have to buy everyone dinner. Maybe plan a time around happy hour.
Where you can recognize those who helped you succeed. And personally thank them for their support in
finding a new job.

4. Take your family away for the weekend. These are the ones who were there with you along the way.
The ones that heard you get upset on bad days and hoped along with you that the right hiring manager saw
what you thought you showed in each interview. Those who never quite knew what you did every day but
were in your corner the whole time. It doesn‘t have to be an expensive trip. And if times are tight you can
make it one night, or one long day.

        In the end, your recognition of this time in life is important. Regardless of which of the above
options you consider. And finishing it with a celebration will end it all on a positive note. A positive note
you can maintain by offering your services for those still looking. Going to networking events, being a
connector and making yourself available for job seekers looking to meet someone like you, and then you
can be there to celebrate their arrival. You‘ll be a pro.

By Tim’s Strategy (26 Nov 2010 09:15 AM PST)

         How to Wake Up With a Smile on Your Face
        If you hate your job, are struggling to find a new one or are not living out the life you planned many
years ago how do you create a more positive environment in/around your life? I came up with 10 ways to
create a positive attitude:

Move - Take a walk to start your day at a brisk pace with deep breaths. Renew that gym membership to get
your day started early and get with upbeat people.

Talk to yourself - Is it weird to talk to yourself in the mirror? I don‘t think so. If you see yourself smiling,
will that help? Probably.

Dwell on the positive - You have a choice each and every day. So start paying attention to the stories
playing in your head. And choose to push the negative away by making room for new more positive

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Focus on people - We get energy from others. Especially those around who make us feel good, challenged
or loved. By those who are supportive of and aware of our goals in life. Who keep us accountable along the

Be thankful for what you have - It‘s is easy to pay attention to the sorry side of life. These attract
attention and empathy from others. But your focus on the great things you enjoy is time better spent. Be
grateful for your health, family, ideas, loves, and unique traits. Create a list and post it somewhere obvious.

Take action on something important - Stop longing for something better and go make it happen. Take
steps toward doing something that matters to you. Start a blog, create a Meet-Up group, take that acting
class. Respect your ideas by acting on them and you‘ll feel a difference.

Get a new perspective - Talk to new people, join a new group or find a new place to drink your morning
coffee. Or find a different friend to share your dreams and struggles with – your positive attitude may come
from a change in venue.

Smile - A smile out typically gets one back. Force one on your face as the alarm clock goes off to get things
started. Keep producing them throughout the morning and, before you know it, the smile becomes viral.
One foot in front of the other . . .

Turn up the dimmer switch - Near the beginning of a big moment (interview, date, meeting, presentation)
when you normally start to worry or wonder if you are ready. Reach down to your hip and grab hold of your
body‘s dimmer switch. And slide it up. Feel the warm buzz of energy.

Be yourself - On a daily basis, work to act your part. Be kind if that‘s a big part of you. Be supportive if
helping others succeed makes you feel good. Be true to the parts of your personality that make your
personal brand unique.

And if you do these things during the day, the day that follows is more likely to start just a little bit brighter.

By Tim‘s Strategy

                           Being On Time Matters
Being on time matters. Being on time, every time, conveys far more than just a good sense of timing. It
tells people that you‘re on top of things, that you‘re organized, that you can be counted on, that you value
them, and, ultimately, that you value yourself.

Punctuality shows mastery. Being on time consistently shows everyone around you that you are the
master of your life. It demonstrates foresight — the ability to predict possible hang-ups — and adaptability
— the ability to change your plans to accommodate those hang-ups.

Punctuality shows competence. Someone who shows, over and over, that they are the master of their time
is someone who will be taken seriously in areas far removed from time management. That foresight and
adaptability that gets you where you need to be, when you need to be there, tells the people around you that
you can handle whatever is thrown at you.

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                                      Career Strategies
Punctuality shows integrity. Punctuality is also a trust issue. When you make an appointment, you are
making a commitment to be where you said you‘d be when you said you‘d be there. The only way you build
up other people‘s trust in you is by consistently meeting your commitments — and that starts with being
punctual. The person who is always on time is someone others can trust to be as good as their word.

Punctuality shows you value people. People are busy — too busy to be waiting on you while their other
work goes unfinished. Being punctual shows, clearly and truly, that you value their time and, by extension,
that you value them as a person. It says, ―Let‘s make this time we‘ve arranged as productive as possible so
we can both get on with all our other important stuff.‖

Punctuality shows you value yourself. Finally, being on time shows you value your time — and yourself.
First of all, being repeatedly late is a self-destructive behavior — why else would you risk not landing the
big client, losing your job, or insulting those around you? And everyone knows that most self-destructive
behavior follows from low self-esteem. Even if it‘s not true, that‘s the perception you‘re allowing others.

If you‘re perpetually late, it‘s time to stop — right now, not 10 minutes from now. Here are 5 Ways to Stop
Being Late:

1. Schedule the event into your calendar. If you block out time to be somewhere then you won‘t be doing
something else when it‘s time to go. I amazed myself when I tried to do this. I discovered I had enough on
my schedule to last 48 hours a day. It would have been impossible for me to be on time for anything.

2. Practice saying what you need to say. Here‘s a great thing to say: ―Excuse me, I hate to cut you off, but
I have an appointment.‖ It is hard to cut someone off, but they will respect you for sticking to a schedule.
The higher up you go in corporate life, the stricter the people stick to a schedule. The good news is that this
means it‘s perfectly acceptable in work life to say this short speech. Get comfortable doing it at work and
then you can do it at home, too. Often saying no takes forethought and practice.

3. Be a time pessimist. Assume everything will take a little longer than your first estimate. This will either
make you right on time for everything, or it‘ll make you a little early. People who run early are calm,
organized, and always ready. Not a bad place to be.

4. Prioritize. Some people are late because they simply don‘t have enough time to do everything. The only
way to change this is to stop doing so much. Face the reality that you cannot get your whole list done.
Figure out what‘s most important and just get that done. Tell the people who depend on you - like your boss
— that you can only do what you have time for, and things at the bottom of the their list of priorities will not
get done: a reality check for everyone in your life.

5. Be honest with yourself. Why do you let yourself be late? It is disrespectful and makes you look
unorganized and out of control. Why are you not getting control over your time. So much about being on
time is actually about self-knowledge. Often, we are scared to make the decisions that we must make in
order to get control over our time and become someone who runs on schedule. But there is no other way to
run a life. To run on schedule is to plan the life you want to live and execute that plan.

By Ellen Reddick

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                                     Career Strategies

                My Interview With Jodi Glickman
       Today I (Tim‘ Strategy) am excited to share my interview with Jodi who has just finished a new
book based on her business (and blog) called Great On The Job. Of course she is very smart (writes for the
Harvard Business Review blog) but she is also very practical.

TIM: Your book is about business communications. In a world newly driven by more casual communication
channels (e.g Twitter and Facebook), can we still be taught or is it too late?

JODI: Not only is it not too late but it‘s arguably more important than ever to master personal
communication strategies. Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn have become an important and fun part of our
lives… but don‘t kid yourself, you‘re not going to get promoted because of a great tweet you send or
because of the number of friends you have on FB. Face-to-face communication is more powerful than ever
because we have less opportunities to practice and engage in meaningful dialogue.
       You‘ve got to be able to give your boss an update or download on a key project or new initiative.
You have to know how to ask for help when you need it or answer a question you don‘t know the answer to
while still sounding smart and on the ball. If you don‘t know how to do those things, Great on the Job can
teach you. It‘s not too late!

TIM: You start the book by going back to basics on how to “Master the Hello and Goodbye”. Do we all
need to go back to square one and have we lost these skills?

JODI: No, everyone doesn‘t need to go back to square one. But if you‘ve ever started a conversation
without asking if it was a good time for the other person to speak or ended a conversation without
establishing forward momentum for your next conversation, than you should probably read this chapter.
        Historically, technical skills have been taught explicitly while soft skills have been learned
experientially. Depending on the role models and experiences you‘ve had, it‘s a crapshoot as to whether or
not you know how to sound professional, competent and capable—always and in every conversation. Great
on the Job is here to level the playing field and give everyone the same starting point. You can tick off the
stuff you know and move on to what you don‘t know easily.

TIM: You refer to the simple task of sharing information with a boss or co-workers as “the download”.
What are some of the keys to a quick download that delivers the information in a way that can be easily
absorbed by the audience?

JODI: Don‘t tease me with info. I can be teased by the lead in to the 10PM news, but not by a co-worker.
Instead, lead with the punch line. Tell me upfront and center what is new, different or important. If you
don‘t have something new, different or important to share, you‘re probably wasting my time. Think ahead
of time about what you want to say and organize your thoughts like this: i) punch line ii) key facts or
supporting highlights; and iii) follow-up or action items.

TIM: You suggest that when joining a new team or a new company that people need to be “strategically
proactive”. You say that the burden falls on the new person to add value. What are some quick tips you can
give people to add value early on?

JODI: In GOTJ, I talk about something called the LEARN strategy.              Think about opportunities to
strategically insert yourself into teams by:
     Learning a new skill
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       Excelling at something you‘re good at
       Assisting a teammate
       Redirecting unwanted or unchallenging work
       Networking—working with people who are well-respected, well connected or generally regarded as
        You can‘t do all of these all of the time, but you can do some of them some of the time. Think about
ways to accelerate your learning curve by volunteering for stretch assignments (learn), get in early wins by
offering to work on something you‘re good at (excel) or ask to work with specific colleagues or teammates
who are well-regarded (network). Take the reins of your career and make the assignments you want come
your way by asking for them within the context of the LEARN strategy.

TIM: In a new job, many would view asking for help or feedback from a boss as a sign of weakness. What
are some smart ways to ask for both that allow you to get what you need and allow your boss to feel good as

JODI: Asking for help in a smart way shows that you have good judgment (I‘d worry if I gave a junior
person an assignment I knew they didn‘t know how to do and they didn‘t ask for any guidance) and asking
for feedback shows that you‘re committed to self-improvement.
        The key to asking for help is acknowledging that you‘re enthusiastic or excited about a task or
project but then stating that you may need some additional resources or guidance to do a great job. Ask for
recent or good examples of a deliverable or recommendations of people to speak with who‘ve done
something similar. Alternatively, ask your manager to sign off on a rough draft or key bullet points before
handing in a final document—don‘t go down the path of finishing an assignment without getting your
managers input along the way to make sure you‘re moving in the right direction.
        As for feedback, the most important thing to do is to avoid putting someone on the spot—ask for the
feedback in advance versus after the fact. Don‘t corner me after a meeting and ask how it went. Instead, let
me know at the outset of a project that you‘d like to get some feedback and plant the seed—that way I‘ll
know to think about it and then you can schedule a conversation to actually have the conversation.

TIM: Many of us have struggled with situations at work where we see something bad going on and aren’t
sure how to call attention to it in the right way. What is the best way to raise a red flag at the office?

JODI: Highlight the issue fast! Don‘t hide behind problems, they only get worse. Think about possible
solutions and alert your manager ASAP. Go in armed with solutions to a potential problem—let me know
that you‘ve thought about the potential courses of actions and give me the pros and cons of various
scenarios. Show me that you‘re thoughtful, you‘re diligent and you take the issue seriously. If you take
ownership of the problem and come armed with solutions, I‘ll think of you as the solution guy not the guy
who comes to me with problems all the time.

Jodi Glickman is a former peace corps volunteer (Chile) turned investment banker (Goldman Sachs‘)
turned communication expert. She is the founder of communication training firm Great on the Job, a regular
contributor to the Harvard Business Review Blog and the author of the upcoming book: Great on the Job:
What to Say, How to Say It, The Secrets of Getting Ahead (St. Martin‘s Press, May 2011). You can follow
her on Twitter at @greatonthejob.

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                                      Career Strategies

                 4 Stages of a Successful Career
        Looking forward, you may wonder where your career will take you, which roles you‘ll play, and the
impression you‘ll leave on the world. While we don‘t know exactly how the idea of a career will change
over the coming years, we know this: Careers are changing. Some argue that we should no longer expect a
traditional career, that work life will be more of journey through a maze of different funding sources, rather
than sticking with a few big companies. It‘s also possible that, at some point, you‘ll find yourself facing a
big career change. But no matter how you successful you become in your career, you should plan to
experience four stages:

Training and Development – For some of us, this will be a trial by fire. You may begin your career as an
entrepreneur. If so, your training will come with abrupt experiences, including the pressure to figure it all
out quickly. Others will start more traditionally, in a lower-pressure environment that allows the experience
to slowly wash over you. Your development will come through absorption and example via internships,
junior positions, and a progression of new responsibilities. The key with the training stage is finding
constant exposure to new ideas and methods, and having people around you who can put this exposure into
context. You‘ll want to be adventurous. Allow for failure, and see and experience your work from as many
different angles as possible.

Success – Success is difficult to define, so we must do this individually. But for many of us, it means
reaching a milestone, maybe a certain salary or title. For you it might be the picket fence and a few kids.
For others, it‘s the freedom to travel the world three to four weeks each year. Success can also be defined as
the moment you finally figure out what you really want to do with your life, after years of making money
but not finding happiness at work. But, at some point, you will be established. People will count on you.
Because you are good at what you do.

Significance – This is about adjusting your work and life mindset. It can also include a change in the work
you do. But primarily, it‘s about changing the focus of your work so it helps people, builds communities, or
propels the world forward in some other positive way. Moving from success to significance is an important
stage of a successful career. Because while you can certainly finish a career without this stage, the inclusion
of it opens the door to the fourth stage, and often helps you become a person of influence. That means you‘ll
have an interest in and excitement for contributing to the world, long after the government suggests it‘s time
to stop.

Continuation – The most successful career used to end at age 55, on a beach somewhere in Florida or golf
course in Palm Springs. You made your money, planned well for your retirement, and succeeded by getting
out early. But as our work life continues to blend with our home life, this is less the case. A successful
career now will more likely continue in some form—because you want it to continue. And because your
work is a permanent part of your life and needn‘t stop simply because you reach an artificial age.
        If you build a career (or transition to one) based on something you enjoy and believe in, there‘s no
reason why this stimulus can‗t keep you creating and producing for years beyond traditional retirement age.
Especially if you are helping others at the same time.

Tim Tyrell-Smith is founder of Tim's Strategy

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            5 Steps To Stand A Little Taller In Life
        How would you like to live your life standing just a little bit taller? By living the life you long for
instead of simply longing for it. I‘m asking because many of us seem to live our lives hunched over a little
bit. We‘re actually 5‘10″ but we stand 5‘8″. We started our lives with the abundant energy of a small child.
And have since lost the bulk of that energy. We‘ve allowed our best ideas to be stifled by the opinions of
others. Or never seeing daylight of any kind, we‘ve hidden them from scrutiny. In a bottom drawer
        What are you longing for? And what could you do in your life to stand just a little bit taller? To
reach a little bit higher. To make a better life for you and those around you. What would happen if you
really believed in yourself? If you took a few more risks. And lived a little more. It‘s possible that you
would start to straighten up. To move and converse with more confidence. And, who knows, perhaps start to
be seen as a bigger player in the world. Perception is powerful. How many of you could add a few inches if
you tried? Here are some ideas to get you started:

Make a list of your ideas or opportunities. Pull out your journal or idea book. Collect into one place the
post-its, napkins, business cards or any other sources of ideas. This could include business ideas, creative
efforts (poems, songs, short stories) or any concept you‘ve always had on your list.

Make a list of your obstacles. What‘s stopping you from taking action? Then create two columns and
separate real obstacles (money, skill, etc) from false ones (fear, excuses). I‘d like you to be conscious of all
the things holding you back – real or imaginary. Once you shine a big light on your obstacles you can begin
planning a way around them. Or ignore them.

Pick 2-3 ideas or opportunities. If you have a longer list, this is really important. Because most of us don‘t
have the time or capacity for more than a few new focus areas in life. This also leads to action because a
shorter list always feels more ―doable‖, right?

Take action in some way on each. I suggest this because listening to your head and heart as you begin will
tell you a lot about your true desires. Sometimes we long for something we don‘t really want. And you
learn this through experience. Even just writing a one page summary or business plan for each will tell you
something. If time stands still as you write, you might have something! Even just telling five friends about
each idea will help. You will hear yourself talking about each. And often the reaction of your friends can
be telling. They might say something like ―That makes so much sense. That‘s perfect for you!‖ Or if they
are really paying attention, they will see that your face lit up when you described one of the three.

Pick one and stick with it. Creating something new. And getting value back from getting it started. Well,
it takes time. And depending on the niche you choose, it could taker longer than you think. So pay
attention to the small wins along the way. And allow yourself to see a future with your idea helping others,
making you money or influencing big crowds. Or whatever your ideas are destined to achieve in the world.

        If you know my story, I spent many years sitting on 38 ideas. Every year they struggled to breathe
in my bottom drawer, was another quarter inch I hunched over. A lack of action on my part left me
bummed out. And only reinforced my worst fear – that the ideas were bad. That my inaction was the right
course. To avoid embarrassing myself. And then I took action. I picked a few ideas and brought them to
life (this blog was one of my 3). The learning started. As did the growing. Similar to the Grinch

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                                      Career Strategies
experiencing a growing heart, I started growing taller. More confident. I was living 5‘10″ and now I am
proudly living 6‘0″. And I plan to keep growing.

By Tim‘s Strategy

                              CareerXroads Update
Get Your Career On A Firm Foundation - There may be limits to opportunistic recruiting tactics. 48
hours after a serious earthquake devastated Christchurch, New Zealand last month, a Manpower job ad
placed on the top job board, SEEK, attempted this hook with survivors. If you are looking for an
opportunity to get away for a while, Australian Engineering firms could be your silver lining. With paid
relocation and resettling assistance, the next 2 years could be an experience that you and your family will
not regret. Needless to say the uproar caused Manpower to backpedal quickly as described in this online
newsletter from Whiteboard.

PepsiCoJobs and Deloitte Launch Apps - Extending their Career site to the desktop, PepsiCoJobs has
launched an app downloadable from iTunes for iPod, iPhone and Android to search jobs by keyword, job
title or location, store search history, mark job searches as favorites and automate alerts based on interests.
Recruiting Roundtable's short summary about the launch described the company's growing mobile strategy
as aspiring "to reach their target audience 'anytime, anywhere.'"
         In other social networking news - Deloitte Australia has launched a new Facebook page and phone
application, designed to help communicate with the 10,000 candidates it expects to attract for its graduate
recruitment program this year. This according to Shortlist, a private subscription newsletter out of Australia.
"Deloitte's Australian national recruitment director, James Elliott, told Shortlist the company had the biggest
annual grad intake in the country - 500 graduates, plus 400 summer vacation interns." Elliott also noted, "the
new Facebook profile had been live for the past three weeks, and had 1,000 followers so far." The key point
of the new app was that the profile was integrated with Deloitte's internal social platform, Yammer, which
meant all of Deloitte's 5,000 Australian staffers could see and reply to questions posted on Facebook. Good
job. Add a 'status' app and we'll do a dance.

Choosing Jelly Beans May Offer Insight About Selecting People - or Not - A tweet led us to this
outstanding Kellogg School of Management article, The Downside of Deliberating. This thought piece
about decision-making examines the likelihood of changing your mind depending on whether you make a
'snap' decision or, whether you 'think hard' about the choice you make.
        Students were asked to decide which jelly beans they preferred. Some were asked to "think hard"
before choosing. Some were asked to react spontaneously and decide. Later the students came back to
confirm their original choices. The data from this typical, but clueless-and-entertaining-lab-student
experiment showed, contrary to the hypothesis, that people making snap decisions are less likely to change
their minds. The authors explained what they thought was happening by noting: "Deliberation introduces
noise into the decision-making process," Nordgren says. "Thinking too much somehow brings us away from
our true preferences." Unfortunately, they infer that deliberation may be a bad thing, we're not sure.
        Perhaps when we get beyond consumer preferences, as in staffing, where the jelly beans are people
whose lives and livelihoods are impacted, our initial preference for who we hire may have nothing to do
with predicting their eventual contribution. Perhaps some more noise in the process should be inserted on
        Many firms, even those with extensive processes to share and justify their choices, fail to
systematically guard against recruiter and hiring manager 'halo' effects which can sometimes be set in stone
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                                     Career Strategies
in the first few seconds. One might even argue that [too often] when we make a snap decision about a
candidate, we then act to uncover supporting evidence and discount evidence to the contrary. With all the
focus on finding candidates and managing talent pools it might be useful to spend some energy on shoring
up the decision process.

Opening the HR Standard Floodgates by Putting the Most Contentious Standard to Bed First -
Arguably, everyone has a comment on Cost-per-Hire. Some recruiters hate being measured by it and some
just hate it. However, most staffing leaders have to deal with it whether they hate it or not. Funny how we
never worry about WHAT it is until we have to compare it to our competitors or what we did a few years
ago. CPH is finally being addressed. Not as THE standard by which staffing should be measured, but
instead, as a measure that ought to be standardized so we all know what we are talking about when we use
it. A working group of more than 50 practitioners, consultants, vendors and academics wrestled with the
details and produced a modest 44 page CostPerHire Draft document that is in its public comment phase until
March 18. (Modest? Yes, some standards, in engineering especially, can be hundreds of pages long.)
        So, make your opinion known after you download and read it - pro or con. Email it to your partners
who claim to help you measure CPH and ask if their tools comply. The CPH working group under the
guidance of Jeremy Shapiro at Morgan Stanley produced this little gem. They are part of a larger National
Staffing and Workforce Planning Task Force (lead by Gerry) where a Job Description standard and a
Workforce Planning standard are not far off.
        Adding some additional perspectives, the former CEO of SHRM, Susan Meisinger, weighed in on
the importance of HR Standards and the role SHRM is playing as a standards development organization for
the American National Standards Institute in her February HRExecutiveOnline column. And Lee Webster,
SHRM's point person on the standards initiative was interviewed [audio podcast] along with Jeremy Shapiro
and Gerry by Peter Clayton, Total Picture Radio, about the CPH standard and potential for staffing
standards in general.

Intrigue Among Competitors in Staffing? - It all began with a mysterious woman at last year's
HRTechnology Conference who wasn't what she claimed, a potential customer for Success Factors
products. Now no one can find her. She was a fake. Her company website is a fake. But somewhere along
the line Success Factors thought she was the real deal and gave her a detailed pricing proposal. Now, that is
gone too. The opening of a John LeCarre novel? Maybe not.
        John Zappe's Valentine's day ERE article, Success Factors Alleges It was Scammed by Halogen,
seems somehow appropriately timed as it details Success Factors' accusation that its Canadian competitor
Halogen defrauded them. Tom Janz noted that Halogen's website does relate how it is committed to ethical
values and suggests that at the very least, if the allegations are true, there appears to be some hypocrisy on
Halogen's part. On the other side, a few questions are being raised about Success Factor's practices as well.
We agree and wonder [naively] what would make someone so sensitive over pricing? Isn't transparency the
new watchword? Still, whether you call it 'mystery shopping", competitive intelligence or fraud, there
seems to be a fine line in the making.

Charging for Video Resumes? Really? - We just have to comment about this Editor and Publisher article
congratulating their [print] industry colleagues on adding a new feature, video resumes, to their services.
Basically these publications are now educating (and charging) job seekers to make videos and post them on
the publication's site. Really?
        Before the Internet, a job seeker could circle 30 job adverts from 30 companies in Sunday
newspapers, cut them out, mount each on individual pages in their journal, type 30 cover letters, print them
out, stuff them along with copies of their resume and mail them all out on Monday morning expecting they

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would reach their destinations by Wednesday. (The cleverest job seekers bought the Sunday classifieds on
Saturday and got them in the mail 2-days early!) Start to finish, it took three to four hours tops. Really!
        Today, finding and applying to 30 jobs in 30 companies isn't fixed to a specific time but would take
the average job seeker the better part of three days working around the clock. (Try it if you don't believe us,
we've timed it). Really! And now publishers have come up with the bright idea that job seekers would like
to spend even more of their waking hours over days, weeks and months learning how to properly project
themselves to an imaginary audience of recruiters? Really? Never mind that recruiters and hiring managers
would be out of their mind to spend their days watching and comparing videos of potential candidates.
Video interviews, yes. Video resumes, seldom if ever. Really.
        This was a bad idea 20 years ago and will still be a bad idea 20 years from now or at least until a
meaningful method of searching and extracting content from video is found. For job seekers to upload their
video resumes for employers to view is either:
        a) one more indication of how publishers have misunderstood and misused every technology since
           the invention of the printing press;
        b) an outright scam to bilk money out of job seekers since employers won't give them any;
        c) a sadist's answer to the question "How can we waste more time, effort and money of desperate
        d) all of the above.

By Gerry Crispin and Mark Mehler (email: phone: 732-821-6652 : web:

                        How Do You Stay Positive?
         The entrepreneurial journey is inevitably a bumpy one. For every great hire you make, a key
employee quits. For every big deal you close, an irate customer calls. And for every time you think to
yourself, "Finally, I've made it," you start to wonder, "What the hell did I get myself into?" And that's just
the first six months.
         Sure, every entrepreneur faces uncertainty, frustration and outright fear at some point. But the most
successful ones are able to block out the chaos, focus on the road ahead and do it all with a happy face.
Because, as tempting as it may be to lapse into Eeyore mode when your business hits a seemingly
insurmountable challenge, entrepreneurs also set the tone for their entire companies. And if the leader isn't
positive, no one will be.
         A few months ago, I attended an event featuring our own Sir Richard Branson at the Center for
Living Peace in Irvine, Calif. As a follow-up in the Living Peace Series, I had the privilege of joining His
Holiness the XIV Dalai Lama on May 4 for a unique discussion about compassion, leadership, the pursuit of
happiness and his outlook on the world. The Tibetan spiritual leader isn't exactly an entrepreneur by most
people's definitions, but he has encountered many peaks and valleys (literally and figuratively) throughout
his life, all the while preaching a message of positivity. And as I learned first-hand during his talk, he
absolutely loves to laugh -- a trait he shares with many entrepreneurs.
         So we decided to make His Holiness an honorary member of our Board of Directors this week and
center our latest debate around positivity. His advice for future leaders of the world? "You are your own
master." About as appropriately positive a message for entrepreneurs as I've ever heard. As for the rest of
our Board, here's their take on what it takes to stay positive.

Lexy Funk (Co-Founder and CEO, Brooklyn Industries) - "Our core mission is to bring creativity and art to
everything we do. If one tact is working, then we try a different approach. We focus the teams on innovation
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                                       Career Strategies
and change, whether that be on a product line, a marketing approach or a sales strategy. Usually, change of
focus improves everyone's mood and often turns around the numbers. Personally, I do the same. I take
photographs, I spend more time in the stores talking to customers, I write more, I set up a brainstorming
session throwing out every idea whether it be big or small."

Rob Dyrdek (President, Dyrdek Enterprises) - "It's something that I struggle with like anybody else does. But
I relentlessly keep telling myself, 'You can't be the one that gets emotional. It all stops with you.' When
someone is being emotional and offends you, you have to know your position. You have to understand that
you are everybody's rock. When everybody panics, they look for you to be the one that makes it right. And
if you're the one panicking, or you get emotional and get angry, you would basically be unmotivating the
people who you need to use to help figure everything out and continue to make everything work and be
strong. For me, just because I've got a bit of an itchy trigger, I'm a little hotheaded, I expect things a certain
way -- that's something, especially of late, that I'm hyper, hyper aware of. Because the reality of it is, I have
so many people in so many positions that rely on me being there. Every now and then, I snap too. It's hard.
But it's something that I practice very hard.
         "Don't get me wrong, I would say it's just like any other key to happiness. If you always feel like
you're progressing and doing new and exciting things, it's an energy of excitement and motivation and
inspiration that goes along with constantly changing and progressing and watching things grow and get
bigger and better. The biggest thing about that -- and I would say this type of energy and this sort of style of
leading that's almost through energy -- it's contagious. When I'm all fired up, everybody else is all like,
'Ahhh, this is going to be amazing!' It gets exciting."

Tate Chalk (Founder and CEO, Nfinity) - "The best way for me to stay positive is to rely heavily on process.
One of the key factors in any business 'turnaround' is getting back to the basics. It's that way with my
company (and my mood) -- when we hit a rough patch, get 'back to the basics.' When I know we are doing
the little things right, it always helps how I feel about the process. That, and a cold beer usually helps."

Jennifer Hill (Chairwoman, Astia NYC Advisory Board) - "Once the venture comes to life, it's no longer just
about you -- it's about the vision and everyone and everything that the vision effects, such as employees,
customers, suppliers and the community. The venture is a living, breathing entity around you and beyond
you. While in some respects this creates more pressure, it can also objectify the rough situation. It's much
easier for me to stay positive with a team.
        "First, I keep my eye on the horizon and try to remember that the ups and downs are totally normal.
The roller coaster is part of the fun! Then, I visualize where I want things to be, focus on getting there, and
think about actions to take. Sometimes I picture a third person in my situation and the advice that I would
offer. If distance from the situation will be of benefit, then I take a walk to clear my head or engage in an
activity in which I can totally and completely lose myself (flow) to take my mind off it.
        "Second, rough patches can be great instigators for change, so taking a dynamically different
approach with the team creates a fresh lens. Sometimes I forget that no one expects me to have all the
answers. Thus, articulating the situation with the team and actively brainstorming new approaches is one
way to work through the rough patch and engage your core resources to help.
        "Lastly, I rely on my personal support system (husband, friends, peers, advisers). There are a wealth
of people who have faced this before and survived, or who know me well and can offer suggestions for
being more effective. Tapping into this wisdom is incredibly beneficial."

Eric Ryan (Co-Founder and Chief Brand Architect, Method) - "When works get challenging, which it
frequently does for an entrepreneur, I rely on the technique of reframing to stay positive. Re-framing is
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                                       Career Strategies
simply telling yourself a story to find a different way to make meaning of the same information. No matter
how bad things get, I can usually find a bright spot through reframing that helps me stay positive and
chugging forward. And if not, well, tequila usually helps too."

Dylan Lauren (Founder and CEO, Dylan's Candy Bar) - "I exercise!!! Very important to take time to move
the toxins, distract, be it in nature or a gym outside office and get the serotonin levels up to change the

Phil Town (Investor and Author of Rule #1 and Payback Time) - "The best way I know to do that was given to
us 5,000 years ago by the Bhagavad Gita: Yogasta Kuru Karmani (Established in Being, perform action).
"In the event you don't have Krishna in your chariot, it helps to have a great spouse -- 'great' defined, in part,
as someone you deeply respect who sends you out there every day thinking you're better than you are. And
if you do have that person in your life, return the good karma to your spouse (and kids) by not taking your
business problems home with you. This is where you have to just man up and put on a happy face. If you
can do it at home, you can do it at the office. And remember, this too shall pass."

Bob Parsons (Founder and CEO, The Go Daddy Group) - "I focus on my Rule No. 16: 'We aren't here for a
long time, we're here for a good time!' I really don't get 'down' all that often. I know when I'm excited about
what Go Daddy is doing, that enthusiasm has a way of moving down through the ranks. You really have to
give your employees a reason to work hard, when you think about it, many of us spend a lot of our lifetime
on the job, so you might as well make it fun!

Rieva Lesonsky (CEO, GrowBiz Media) - "As a leader, it's really important for you to not let your team see
you sweat. If you appear nervous, worried or distracted, it will only cause them to be concerned. So when
things aren't going my way, I let myself internally panic for no more than two days -- all the while faking a
positive attitude to other people. During those two days, I try to do something cathartic (sometimes I cry,
sometimes I pray) and then I try to do something constructive, like come up with a new idea for a client or
think of a product extension. Also, life always seems better when you're eating a Dairy Queen ice cream

Rob Adams (Director, Texas Venture Labs at the University of Texas) - "Remain positive, always wear your
game face and be a good actor. Like it or not, people key into your disposition about the company and if
you're not positive and upbeat no one will be!"

Lawrence Gelburd (Lecturer, The Wharton School) - "The most profound, lasting achievements are those
which are the most difficult, not the least. This maxim has always worked well for me and my
entrepreneurial partners."

Tom Szaky (Founder, TerraCycle) - "Great question. From my perspective, you remind yourself of what you
have built and reflect on all the positive that has happened in the past. That almost always outshines
whatever negative is facing you at that moment. With that said, it is always darkest before the dawn!"

By Rod Kurtz (Posted 5/ 10 11 at 7:00 PM | Board of Directors, Leadership, Starting a Business)

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              Nine Things Successful People Do Differently
        Why have you been so successful in reaching some of your goals, but not others? If you aren't sure,
you are far from alone in your confusion. It turns out that even brilliant, highly accomplished people are
pretty lousy when it comes to understanding why they succeed or fail. The intuitive answer — that you are
born predisposed to certain talents and lacking in others — is really just one small piece of the puzzle. In
fact, decades of research on achievement suggests that successful people reach their goals not simply
because of who they are, but more often because of what they do.

1. Get specific. When you set yourself a goal, try to be as specific as possible. "Lose 5 pounds" is a better
goal than "lose some weight," because it gives you a clear idea of what success looks like. Knowing exactly
what you want to achieve keeps you motivated until you get there. Also, think about the specific actions that
need to be taken to reach your goal. Just promising you'll "eat less" or "sleep more" is too vague — be clear
and precise. "I'll be in bed by 10pm on weeknights" leaves no room for doubt about what you need to do,
and whether or not you've actually done it.

2. Seize the moment to act on your goals. Given how busy most of us are, and how many goals we are
juggling at once, it's not surprising that we routinely miss opportunities to act on a goal because we simply
fail to notice them. Did you really have no time to work out today? No chance at any point to return that
phone call? Achieving your goal means grabbing hold of these opportunities before they slip through your
        To seize the moment, decide when and where you will take each action you want to take, in advance.
Again, be as specific as possible (e.g., "If it's Monday, Wednesday, or Friday, I'll work out for 30 minutes
before work.") Studies show that this kind of planning will help your brain to detect and seize the
opportunity when it arises, increasing your chances of success by roughly 300%.

3. Know exactly how far you have left to go. Achieving any goal also requires honest and regular
monitoring of your progress — if not by others, then by you yourself. If you don't know how well you are
doing, you can't adjust your behavior or your strategies accordingly. Check your progress frequently —
weekly, or even daily, depending on the goal.

4. Be a realistic optimist. When you are setting a goal, by all means engage in lots of positive thinking
about how likely you are to achieve it. Believing in your ability to succeed is enormously helpful for
creating and sustaining your motivation. But whatever you do, don't underestimate how difficult it will be to
reach your goal. Most goals worth achieving require time, planning, effort, and persistence. Studies show
that thinking things will come to you easily and effortlessly leaves you ill-prepared for the journey ahead,
and significantly increases the odds of failure.

5. Focus on getting better, rather than being good. Believing you have the ability to reach your goals is
important, but so is believing you can get the ability. Many of us believe that our intelligence, our
personality, and our physical aptitudes are fixed — that no matter what we do, we won't improve. As a
result, we focus on goals that are all about proving ourselves, rather than developing and acquiring new
         Fortunately, decades of research suggest that the belief in fixed ability is completely wrong —
abilities of all kinds are profoundly malleable. Embracing the fact that you can change will allow you to
make better choices, and reach your fullest potential. People whose goals are about getting better, rather
than being good, take difficulty in stride, and appreciate the journey as much as the destination.

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                                       Career Strategies

6. Have grit. Grit is a willingness to commit to long-term goals, and to persist in the face of difficulty.
Studies show that gritty people obtain more education in their lifetime, and earn higher college GPAs. Grit
predicts which cadets will stick out their first grueling year at West Point. In fact, grit even predicts which
round contestants will make it to at the Scripps National Spelling Bee.
        The good news is, if you aren't particularly gritty now, there is something you can do about it.
People who lack grit more often than not believe that they just don't have the innate abilities successful
people have. If that describes your own thinking .... well, there's no way to put this nicely: you are wrong.
As I mentioned earlier, effort, planning, persistence, and good strategies are what it really takes to succeed.
Embracing this knowledge will not only help you see yourself and your goals more accurately, but also do
wonders for your grit.

7. Build your willpower muscle. Your self-control "muscle" is just like the other muscles in your body —
when it doesn't get much exercise, it becomes weaker over time. But when you give it regular workouts by
putting it to good use, it will grow stronger and stronger, and better able to help you successfully reach your
        To build willpower, take on a challenge that requires you to do something you'd honestly rather not
do. Give up high-fat snacks, do 100 sit-ups a day, stand up straight when you catch yourself slouching, try
to learn a new skill. When you find yourself wanting to give in, give up, or just not bother — don't. Start
with just one activity, and make a plan for how you will deal with troubles when they occur ("If I have a
craving for a snack, I will eat one piece of fresh or three pieces of dried fruit.") It will be hard in the
beginning, but it will get easier, and that's the whole point. As your strength grows, you can take on more
challenges and step-up your self-control workout.

8. Don't tempt fate. No matter how strong your willpower muscle becomes, it's important to always respect
the fact that it is limited, and if you overtax it you will temporarily run out of steam. Don't try to take on two
challenging tasks at once, if you can help it (like quitting smoking and dieting at the same time). And don't
put yourself in harm's way — many people are overly-confident in their ability to resist temptation, and as a
result they put themselves in situations where temptations abound. Successful people know not to make
reaching a goal harder than it already is.

9. Focus on what you will do, not what you won't do. Do you want to successfully lose weight, quit
smoking, or put a lid on your bad temper? Then plan how you will replace bad habits with good ones, rather
than focusing only on the bad habits themselves. Research on thought suppression (e.g., "Don't think about
white bears!") has shown that trying to avoid a thought makes it even more active in your mind. The same
holds true when it comes to behavior — by trying not to engage in a bad habit, our habits get strengthened
rather than broken.
        If you want change your ways, ask yourself, What will I do instead? For example, if you are trying
to gain control of your temper and stop flying off the handle, you might make a plan like "If I am starting to
feel angry, then I will take three deep breaths to calm down." By using deep breathing as a replacement for
giving in to your anger, your bad habit will get worn away over time until it disappears completely.

By Heidi Grant Halvorson, Ph.D. is a motivational psychologist, and author of the new book Succeed: How
We Can Reach Our Goals

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                                      Career Strategies

                                  Crimes of the Cubicle
        It‘s your cubicle. You even have a nameplate. So it‘s your personal space, right? Not really. It‘s
more like a seat at the dinner table than a room in the house. In other words, any sense of privacy is an
illusion. Treat your office space with respect if you want to be taken seriously in the workplace. You want
to keep your job? Avoid doing any of these 15 inexcusable activities at your desk.

Personal grooming - As annoying as that little snag in your fingernail or chip in your polish may be, resist
the temptation for an on-the-spot fix. Oh sure, it will just take a moment. But before you know it, you've
filed the rest of your nails and touched up your toes, much to the dismay of anyone within range of the
grating sounds and noxious fumes. Also, consider that every snip of the nail clipper will generate a clipping
that may descend gently into your trashcan -- or alternately fly into office space with your DNA affixed to
it. Shaving? Tweezing? Dental floss? Eww. If you wouldn't do it in front of your boss, don't do it at your

Assembling sandwiches - Unless you actually work on an assembly line, there's no excuse for assembling
sandwiches or other meals at your desk. You make your kids pack their school lunches the night before,
right? There's a reason. No one needs to watch (or smell) you smear mustard on naked bread and then pile
on the deli meat just so. Worse yet, they might ask you if you have any extra, and do you really want to
share your extra lean turkey pastrami with Bob from accounting?

Excessive decorating - Yes, you practically live at your desk. But in reality, you don‘t. So skip the over-
the-top seasonal decorations like the bobble head pumpkin man with glowing eyes and a menacing cackle,
the musical snow globe that plays "The 12 Days of Christmas" any time someone walks by, your
motivational "Valentine's Day Suck" poster... They'll work better as home décor -- or on the bargain table of
your next garage sale. Framed college diploma or professional awards? Yes. Stuffed tiger mascot that roars
when you squeeze its big toe? Not so much.

Undressing the part - If the shoes look good but pinch your toes, too bad. You put them on today. And
they're staying there until you get back home ... or at least to your car. Same with the itchy wool jacket. Yes,
you can toss it back on in time for your afternoon meeting. But what if your boss peeks in to introduce a
new hire and you're sitting there in a cloud of foot odor and perspiration? Highly unprofessional. If you've
planned ahead and dressed with office-appropriate layering, go ahead and hang up the jacket until the
meeting. But the shoes? Don't even think about it.

Hitting the marketplace - Buying or selling in the office place is bad form. That means no checking on
how your old baseball cards are faring on eBay and no hunting down the best deal on snow tires from your
office chair. If you're a good employee, you're meticulous about details and any "quick check" would
certainly turn into a comprehensive search on company time. Or worse, you'd be time crunched to make a
hasty regrettable decision (how's that Toothpick of the Month Club working out for ya?). Better to save the
online shopping and eBaying for the middle of the night, where it belongs.

Checking your winks - Yes, the blonde snowboarding enthusiast on that online dating site is just your type.
Did she respond to that email you sent? Did she notice the dashing new profile photo you posted of you
standing next to that random sports car? Three words: Love is patient. She can wait. You can wait. If there's
going to be magic, it will still be waiting on your home computer tonight after work. Besides, she might
want to talk on the phone, and then you'd have to resort to yet another faux pas… Talking in Code.

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Talking too loud, too soft or in code - The only thing more annoying than hearing co-workers' loud
telephone conversations is hearing their whispered conversations. And the only thing worse than the
dramatic whisper is Code Talk. You know, those careful conversations that begin with, "I really can't talk
about it right now, but..." Stop it. Stop right there. Before the "but." There will be no word substitution or
pointed innuendo. No saying "the situation we talked about" which means "my coworker who wears that
really nasty cologne." Do not attempt to describe last night's date without actually using the word "date."
Save the play-by-play for later when you can use complete sentences.

Moping around - OK, Snowboard Girl was The One. You knew it. Your friends knew it. But she somehow
missed out on that whole love vibe. So now your life is basically over, and you have no one with whom to
deflect Aunt Margaret's sympathy at the family Christmas dinner. Psssst. That‘s personal. You‘re at work. If
you feel emotional, it‘s better to sniffle in Stall #3 than at your desk. And if you focus on today‘s tasks
instead of moping over The One, you‘re not only modeling professionalism, you will actually heal faster.

Sending self portraits - You would never make a personal call at your desk where everyone can overhear
you. (Good for you!) But what about sending a quick photo of yourself at the new job with your cell phone
camera? Of course you need to get a decent picture first. No, not that one. It makes your nose look big. If
you hold your arm out a little further .... Maybe put the phone on the edge of your desk, angle your face
toward the computer and snap the shot with your right foot. The only ones who take a good cell phone photo
on the first shot are the ones who do it way too much. This isn't office appropriate. Send a quick text
message instead.

Pretending you aren't sick - If you're going through enough tissues to dent a small rainforest, go home.
Yesterday when you worked past five with those occasional sniffles, you were dedicated and tough. Today
you're just gross. You know that cringing feeling you get when someone is sneezing uncontrollably, hacking
like a barking seal or blowing their nose a little too often and a lot too loudly? Sandy in the next cubicle has
moved past cringing and is applying hand sanitizer to her face. And guess who she's going to blame if she
gets sick?

Saving it for later - Yum! Half of a big crusty bakery muffin and the remains of that Paprika Maple Latte
that you might want to finish later (if you decide you really do like it after all). Define "later." If later will
occur within the next hour, by all means keep the muffin (which can't be that good or you would have
scarfed it down already) and your red flecked drink to the side on your desk. But put the muffin back in the
bag and keep a lid on the latte. And they had better be from this morning, not last week. Leftovers are bad
enough in the fridge, left on your desk they will colonize. And mold is bad for business.

Engaging your imaginary friend - We all talk to ourselves occasionally. "You are parking the car in Row
G," "Paper towels, bananas, peanut butter..." It keeps us in the moment and helps us remember song lyrics.
The trick is to keep the conversation private. Between you and you. If you say it out loud, it's between you,
Sandy (who's still ticked off about all the sneezing) and whoever happens to walk by.

Sleeping on the job - Unless Human Resources handed you a pillow along with your ID badge, you should
assume that sleeping is not a part of your job. While midday siestas are acceptable in many European and
Asian countries and have even proven to increase productivity, they are still newsworthy in the U.S.,
meaning that workplace napping is not the norm. Yes, if you angle your chair just so, chances are no one
will notice the occasional head bob when you jerk awake from a quick snooze. But better that you master

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your TV recorder and watch late night shows when it fits with your natural biological rhythms.

Sneaking one little kiss/hug/squeeze - He picked you up for lunch at the office. This is serious. He's met
your boss. Could your friends and parents be next? It's not like you'd ever actually make out in your cubicle.
You've read the articles at and know better. But you're in love! Just one little kiss? Risky. Pick
the wrong moment (or the wrong guy) and your private moment will go viral. There will be a strange and
sudden hush when you walk into the break room. People will snicker. Just keep in mind that your sofa is in
your living room and that your cubicle is on company property and you'll be fine.

Cursing up a storm - From the back of the bus in middle school, a well-timed swear word may have given
you an aura of maturity (as long as the bus driver didn't overhear and reassign you the seat directly behind
him), but at work or in any professional setting, cursing is viewed as unpolished behavior. If you can't
control your own language, how does your boss know you're capable of steering that marketing project to
the next level? Come up with alternate word choices and practice saying them instead. Eventually, they'll
become new word habits that will work in your favor, not against you.

Listen to your conscience - Not sure if something's a desk do or a desk don't? Use common sense and enlist
your conscience. The little voice that said "don't" to uploading your Lady Gaga dance moves to Facebook is
your friend. It wants you to win at work and in life. Listen to it.

By Heather Dugan,

                Finding Your Target Audience Online
Dan sells a baseball trivia book and says his biggest challenge is finding his target audience online. Here
are our most effective targeting strategies in a blueprint customized for his needs. However, these strategies
will work for any business—so as you read this blueprint, think about how you can make these strategies
work for you.

Just Say No to Lists - ―Should I be accessing baseball related e-mail lists?‖ Dan asked us. Our answer is an
unqualified ―No.‖ They‘re too expensive and there‘s little chance that people who have never heard of you
will respond to an unasked-for email from you. On top of that, you run the risk of getting slammed with
spam complaints.

Grow a List of Keywords Using the Google Keyword Tool - Everyone who is trying to reach an audience
online should know about the Google Keyword Tool. This handy free tool allows you to explore the exact
words and phrases people are typing into Google when searching for information. Be sure to look for ―long-
tail‖ keywords that clearly represent people who are interested in what you offer but don‘t have a lot of
For Dan we plugged these five keyword phrases into the Google Keyword Tool:
• baseball trivia
• baseball quizzes
• baseball facts
• baseball book
• baseball history
And we came up with a list of 124 associated keywords, many of which would be perfect for you to use in
your SEO and paid search efforts. If you were to successfully target just twelve keywords, you would be
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able to put your product in front of 18,790 people who you‘re probably not reaching right now—and that‘s
huge. You can grow this list huge by adding team-specific, league-specific, and player-specific keywords as
well, such as ―Babe Ruth trivia,‖ ―Boston Red Sox trivia,‖ and so forth. A good keyword list should have at
least 100 keywords on it.

Run Google AdWords ads - Google AdWords is the fastest way to get your product in front of people who
are actively searching for what you offer. Start by experimenting with the keywords in the list above. Make
sure your ads lead directly to landing pages that give searchers exactly what they‘re looking for--preferably
in the form of a compelling downloadable freebie.
        For example, if you‘re going to run an ad targeting the keyword, ―baseball trivia questions,‖ link to a
page that offers a free eBook titled something like, ―49 baseball trivia questions that even the most die-hard
fans can‘t answer.‖

Run Facebook Ads - Did you know you can create Facebook ads that target people based on the interests
on their personal profile? This means you can use Facebook ads to promote your downloadable freebie only
to people who have identified themselves as baseball fans. It‘s a great way to grow your fan base! To save
money on your ads, make sure they point to a custom tab on your Facebook Page rather than to your

Become Active on Facebook Pages/Groups Related to Your Interest - Dan, simply enter ―baseball‖ into
the search bar at the top of Facebook and start looking for pages to like and groups to join. Use your
―Bleeding Baseball‖ account to interact on the pages you like but don‘t overtly promote your book—instead
make interesting comments that make people want to engage with you. If they feel like they know you
personally, they‘ll be more interested in your book.

Become Active on Industry-Specific Forums and Blogs - To find forums and blogs that appeal to your
target market, go to Google and do a search on terms such as ―baseball + forum,‖ ―baseball + blog,‖ and
―baseball trivia + blog‖ Be sure to offer fun and helpful comments on the forums and blogs you like best.
Take the time to listen and give people what they really want. Then be sure to link back to your site via your
post signature.

Find Your Audience on Twitter - Go to Twitter and do searches to identify people who are interested in
baseball. Follow them and chances are good they‘ll follow you back, if they see you offer fun baseball-
related tidbits of information instead of a constant barrage of promotional messages. When people follow
you, send them a personal message thanking them. Relate to them on a personal level and they will be more
likely to be interested in buying your book.

Write Short Articles and Post them on Popular Sites - Dan, this should be easy for you as you have a
whole book full of interesting content to work with. Create a series of short 400-700 word articles and
approach the owners of popular baseball blogs and websites to see if they would be interested in publishing
your article. Make sure you include a link back to your site in your ―About the Author‖ blurb. This is a great
way to introduce yourself to a larger audience.

Grow Your Site Content with a Blog - Dan, I see you don‘t have a blog on your site. I would put that on
your ―to-do‖ list right away. Having a blog is a great way to grow a site full of valuable content that‘s
optimized for your best keywords, so it appeals to the search engines as well as your human visitors. Plus,
it‘s a great way to encourage repeat visits.

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Include an Opt-in on Every Page of Your Site - Dan, your site visitors are some of the most targeted
people you can find—and yet you‘re not making any effort to stay in touch with them if they don‘t
immediately buy your book. Studies show it takes a minimum of 6-7 points of contact for someone to be
comfortable enough to make a purchase online. We recommend you help your visitors over that hump by
encouraging them to sign up for your downloadable freebie and then using email to grow a strong
relationship with them over time.

Use Email to Close the Deal - At strategic times of the year—the beginning of the baseball season, Father‘s
Day, the end of the regular season, the final series of the World Cup, and Christmas—promote your book to
your mailing list. Give them an exclusive subscriber‘s discount and you‘d be surprised at how many of them
will take you up on your offer!

By John Souza, Founder and Chief Strategist Social Media Marketing University

                         You Can Add More Value
       The bottom line here is that you can‘t wait to be told what adds value, and you can‘t count on your
job description as written to add enough value. You need to figure this out for yourself. You need to
educate yourself about what the business values, and then tune your work specifically to deliver more value.

Do more than your job description - Your job description is valid for a moment in time — the moment when
it is first given to you. As soon as you start doing the job, what the job needs to be evolves as the business
grows and as the world changes. If you do your job as written for too long a period of time, you will
become out of date. You will begin to lose relevance to the business. You will not be adding enough value.

Don‘t wait to be asked or directed - Yes, you need to do your job, but you also to think about how to
improve the way your job is done. Don‘t give this extra work of figuring out how your job needs to evolve
to your to your boss. Sort it out on your own and make a recommendation. (That‘s what high performers

I have collected some 29 questions that will help you figure out how to tune your job over time to make sure
you are adding enough value:

   1.  Who uses my work & what do they need most?
   2.  Who are the consumers of each piece of work that I do?
   3.  Do they still use it? Do they still need it?
   4.  Do they pass it on to others? What do those people need?
   5.  Can the content I deliver be modified to be more useful or relevant?
   6.  Can the manner in which I deliver it be improved to be more useful or relevant?1
   7.  What is the business outcome that happens as a result of my producing this work?
   8.  How does my work impact profit?
   9.  Does my work impact quality, innovation, efficiency, competitiveness, cost reduction, process
       improvement, sales effectiveness…
   10. Can I tune my work to create a better or different business outcome?2
   11. How much does it cost the company for me to do this work?
   12. Can it be done for less?
   13. What happens to my work after it‘s delivered?
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                                      Career Strategies
    14. What are the downstream costs of the things that I do?
    15. Who else does my work cause work or costs for?
    16. Is there a way to make my work more efficient for others?3
    17. What has changed in the market since I started this job?
    18. What has changed in our customers‘ business since I started this job?
    19. What has changed in our competitors‘ business since I started this job?
    20. What has changed inside our company since I started this job?
    21. Do these changes require a change in the way my job is done?4
    22. How much has the company grown since I started this job?
    23. How much does the company plan to grow in the future?
    24. What still works in the way I do my job if the company is much bigger?
    25. Which things about how I do my job don‘t work if the company is bigger?5
    26. How can I share more knowledge?
    27. How can I teach someone to be more effective?
    28. How can I help someone step into a bigger role?
    29. How can I help someone believe that something bigger is possible for them.6
        I see a lot of people thinking that answering these questions is not part of their job. They wait for
others to answer them, and await new instructions from their manager. It‘s dangerous to rely on your job
description to tell you what to do, or to wait for your manager to tune your job along the way. It‘s much
safer (and your are adding more value) when you do it yourself. Take that weight off your manager. You
decide what needs to get done to drive the future goals and continue to add the most value.

By Patty Azzarello
  Stop producing work no one cares about. Check! I know so many organizations that are over-busy
producing reports, analysis, or sales and marketing that no one uses. Don‘t burn up your time on things that
no one cares about. DO actively learn what they find most useful, and tune what you produce to be more
  If you can‘t connect your work to a business outcome, you are in danger of not being relevant. If you are
not relevant you are not adding enough value. You need to stay educated on the most important outcomes
the business is driving and stay connected with them. Even if you are a cost center providing an internal
service, you need to find ways to improve efficiency or usefulness.
  Own improving the outcomes your work causes, not just delivering the work. Always be finding ways to
take cost out. If you produce 50 reports, maybe 20 better reports would do? (Everyone will like 20 reports
better than 50!) If you do things manually or in a chaotic reactive mode, how many people are impacted by
this? How can you create a process to streamline the work, make it less complicated, and require fewer
touch points, questions, or follow-ups?
  If you are not evolving your job, you will no longer be qualified when the game changes. Or you will be
doing the wrong job, and your job will get eliminated. Be the one to recommend changing your job to meet
the evolving business needs.
  When companies get bigger all the jobs change. You can‘t keep using the same way of working. It doesn‘t
scale. You can be the one to build a new process that will scale, or you can be the one who gets pushed
aside by someone with experience at a bigger company.
  If you are not helping others, you are not adding enough value. The other upside is that helping others can
put a meaning into an otherwise unfulfilling job. If you are feeling unsatisfied about being in a corporate
role that doesn‘t make enough difference in the world, help someone. When you help someone else, you
change the world for that person.

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                                 Start Consulting
    If you are one of the many IT workers who were downsized out of a job during the recent recession or
are interested in being your own boss, consulting can be a lucrative alternative to a nine-to-five full time job.
But to be successful will take self-awareness, preparation, and the ability to network extensively.

      A consultant is an expert who advises a company, organization, or individual. You would be hard-
       pressed to find an industry that does not use a consultant in some capacity. It would also be a
       challenge to find a business that did not rely on computer technology in some fashion. So there are a
       lot of opportunities to find your niche as an IT consultant
      One thing a consultant should not be is a jack of all trades. The first step in building a consultancy
       business is to identify a specialty such as non-profits, healthcare, education, military, government, or
       IT training. Just as a general practitioner can make a comfortable living as a small town physician,
       it‘s the heart or cosmetic surgeon who is living in the big house on the hill. Specializing is a way to
       stand out from the crowd.
      But in deciding your specialty, you also need to be aware of market demands. Read industry trade
       publications, visit IT websites, and check out IT job boards to see what needs employers are looking
       to fill.
      Once you have identified your niche, the next step is to market your new enterprise. That starts with
       a web site. Unlike a press release which needs to be short and to the point, a website gives you
       creative freedom. Yes, you want to state up front who you are, what you do, and why you‘re the
       person for the job. You can do that in writing or you can add a video so make more of a personal
       connection with prospective clients.
      A web site gives you the options of adding a testimonial page so as your business takes root, you can
       offer visitors a ready-made list of referrals. You can have a résumé page. And if you have the time
       and inclination, you can have a section on the latest news in your field of expertise. Not every client
       may be predisposed to check out every page on your site, but it‘s important to have the information
       readily available and easily accessible for those who do want to. So make sure the web site is user-
       friendly and well laid out.
      A web site doesn‘t take the place of traditional marketing such as press releases, cold calls, and pitch
       letters; it complements your overall marketing efforts and is the place where you can direct potential
       customers to go to get in-depth information on both you and your business.
      For as important as marketing is, nothing can take the place of networking. You are your best sales
       tool. Start with the business friends and associates you know, including vendors. Contact them and
       let them know about your new consulting business. Check with the local Chamber of Commerce for
       any business mixers they might be hosting. Join business groups and professional associations in
       your area.
      While you want to be energetic and enthusiastic in letting people know about your new business, be
       careful not to bombard anyone with a pushy, hard sell, which can come across as either overbearing
       or desperate.
      Lastly, spend the money to get a good, printed business card. Do not print them off your home
       computer. If you want people to see you as a professional, you need to present yourself as one and
       business cards can reflect that.

By Corp-Corp

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                         Client Goals and Teamwork
        Teamwork is essential to the success of every brand‘s online presence. It involves collaboration
between groups of people with different skills, personalities, and expertise. Online marketers, for instance,
collaborate with PR specialists, programmers, webmasters, advertisers, and traditional marketers, when they
are hired to meet a brand‘s social media goals.
        One of the difficulties that teams run into is poor communication. Communication can break down
for several reasons. When it does, the client is left to deal with the results. The upside to this hurdle is that it
can be repaired or overcome. Here are some tips on how to keep your team, and the teams you are working
with, focused on your client‘s objectives.

Check Egos at the Door - Remember this: everyone has something unique to bring to the table. Find a way
to utilize each team‘s strengths. If you believe your team has a great idea, fight to have it carried out. But
you should also keep an open mind about the suggestions other teams have. Genuinely acknowledge and
consider their ideas to give your client the best possible results.

Determine Each Team’s Responsibilities - Before a project begins each team should have a clear
understanding of what their own responsibilities are; and each team should be aware of what the other teams
are responsible for as well. You can save everyone a lot of frustration by staying within your boundaries of
the project. Take care of what you were hired to do and provide assistance to others when they, or the client,
asks you to.

Decide on a Project Manager - There needs to be at least one person that every team can go to for help, to
share ideas with, and to express concerns to. He or she needs to be in contact with the client on a regular
basis and should be capable of making sound decisions. They also need to be a great listener and be
knowledgeable about the product or service the client offers.

Remember Your Client’s Goals - As you get deeper into a project, external factors may throw each team
off course. When this happens everyone needs to focus of what the client wants. Refer to what each team
was asked to do in the preparation stage of the project and coordinate with each other to devise a plan for
moving forward. Meeting once a week or conducting a conference call can really go a long way in terms of
keeping everyone focused.

Avoid Burning Bridges - Disagreements and misunderstandings are likely to occur when several teams
work on a single project. When the project reaches its completion, tie up all the loose ends before you move
on. You don‘t want your company to have a reputation for being uncooperative or hard to work with –
especially since people can voice their opinions about you through social media. You don‘t have to like the
people you worked with and they don‘t have to like you. But having a mutual respect for each other at the
end of a project is the best way to end things.

By Bob Speyer and Justin Delos Reyes

                                                                                                     Page 29 of 29

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