Monday, February 24, 2014


There are a lot of awards out there. Almost every industry, corporation, community, school (etc.) has a way they rank and recognize their best.

What makes us proud of our achievements can vary and is often intensely personal.

 I’ve won a few in my time and I’m even honored of some of them. <grin>  For me, recognition by the very folks who have patiently sifted through my opinions and ideas and grown even better ones is the best award. That’s my son who exemplifies this. That’s my Women in Leadership community where I work. That’s the artists with whom I play (which is the real work).

A good career goal is not to win an award. A good career goal is to feel proud and motivated.

And yes, I am proud of this week’s announcement.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Once again it’s Valentine’s Day

Hug your mentor.
Send chocolates around your community.
Thank your partners & friends.
Relationships are emotional and February 14 is all about letting your heart overflow for the folks who hold you.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Resume thought - skills

When we talk about our skills in interviews, resumes and career plans, we often use topics and headers. We speak in shorthand and assume others know what we mean.
For example, “people management” is not a skill; it is a topic. Good people management is a collection of skills (and few of us are good at all of them): coaching; delegation… it’s a long list. A good rule of thumb is if the term contains the word “management” chances are it is a collection of skills.
If we are trying to position ourselves as capable, articulating the skills that show how we excel is a stronger way to showcase ability vs. talking in general buckets and having assumptions made.
One woman recently said, "I am good at assessing risk frameworks.” When we talked about what skills that really meant, she discovered that putting things in order and actively correcting process (vs. arm’s length evaluation of problems) were the two skills below the buzz words.  She didn’t want to observe and note, she wanted to fix.
Does your resume/ elevator speech / self-assessment get to the heart of your skills?

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

What’s in a name?

A lot it turns out. We attach meaning (emotion, symbolism, fact…) to mere words and often assume everyone else hears /feels what we do.

That’s not a criticism; it’s simply human nature. Even a simple colour (think RED) can conjure a smell, an image, an item or a shade unique to you. Given all the meanings – real or assumed – that words can hold, it’s a wonder we can communicate effectively with each other at all.

There are usually two ways to deal with ambiguity:
·         Nail down each meaning and be as precise as you can… which often leads to more terms requiring more definitions
·         Allow for variation and hope the majority meet in the middle

There are a few other options but they require patience and a tolerance for potentially looking foolish, such as:
·         Assuming your definition is incorrect or unfinished and trying on /asking for others in order to generate a whole new perspective
·         Attempting to identify the emotions shading the conversation vs. the factual meanings

Or simply allowing the ambiguity to create its own experience.

I used the word “sponsorship” in a blog post and had over a 1000 hits from Russia. I doubt my post was what they were searching for…but maybe some had a discovery they weren’t expecting. It was a bit of a discovery and research process for me (fascinating reading about Russia and immigration issues).

So this is an ambiguous post for those of us who enjoy debating RED now and then.