Busyness is not a Badge of Honor

Busyness is not a Badge of Honor
Recently an expert n television claimed that people put too much stock in the concept of work-life balance, that the focus should simply be on life with a capital L. There was then a discussion about whether we have entered an era of self-focus (think mani, pedi and massage, gym memberships, and constant connectivity with friends), or whether work still dominates our lives. Is the average person working more than forty hours per week, chained to their desks, laptops, and phones? Are people ... Read more
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How to Discipline Your Calendar

How to Discipline Your Calendar
Recently I was stuck in an airport waiting for a connecting flight that was delayed. I was grateful it was still coming, but I realized that I would now get home much later than I had expected — well after midnight. I was also thinking that I had an early morning meeting the next day. My next thoughts were around how this schedule compression had occurred once again. Who accepts meeting invitations? (I do.) Who keeps/approves my calendar? (I do.) I may have an Executive Assistant who ... Read more
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How Not to Introduce Yourself

How Not to Introduce Yourself
By the time you snag your first professional job, you’ve heard the advice about introducing yourself a million time. Stand up, have a firm handshake, make eye contact, speak clearly, use titles like Ms. or Dr. until you are invited to do otherwise. You know the routine and you’ve mastered it. What you may not be as prepared for is how to introduce yourself at a meeting. Your introduction, of course, varies with the meeting. If the facilitator requests that each participant give ... Read more
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Feminism: Different Times, Different Definitions, Different Tactics

Feminism: Different Times, Different Definitions, Different Tactics
Young women who reached adulthood in the late 1960s and 1970s had generation specific issues facing them. At that time, the nation was just coming out of the “Father Knows Best” era. Women had limited educational and employment opportunities (nursing, teaching, and secretarial work were predominant options). They weren’t earning a significant percentage of graduate degrees, and they certainly weren’t earning equal pay. In fact, many of them had trouble getting a ... Read more
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How to Avoid Presentation Arrogance

How to Avoid Presentation Arrogance
Most new professionals have had a course in public speaking or communication 101. If you took these courses, you know all about doing the prep work, using media selectively, and arriving early for your presentation. You have been coached in avoiding “ah” or “like” as filler, and in not using jokes unless they are culturally relevant and appropriate for the situation. You also have to be good at telling jokes (which few people are). What you may not have been taught ... Read more
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Paralyzed by Choices

Paralyzed by Choices
As a society, we tend to romanticize the decade between the ages of 20 and 30. It’s the start of adult life, a beginning filled with opportunity, choice, and health. It’s a time for exploration, experience, and fun. If there are so many positives, why do so many young people seem stuck and unhappy? Parents complain that their children don’t appear to be moving forward in their careers. Psychologists discuss the unwillingness of the “twenty-somethings” to make ... Read more
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Choosing a Career in Nonprofits

Choosing a Career in Nonprofits
Omar Garrett, a marketing manager with LinkedIn, recently wrote a piece in the New York Times encouraging young people to consider work in nonprofit organizations. He notes that only one in 10 “career-oriented” graduates (those with majors in program like business and engineering) plan to pursue work in a nonprofit. Stating that although other career-paths offer a surer path to financial and professional success, nonprofits need new grads who in turn can gain vital skills and prove ... Read more
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Curb Your Enthusiasm

The following is an excerpt from the forthcoming book, 100 Ways to Start Smart and Stay Ahead in Your Career. Many of us have heard about Pollyanna, the little girl who always saw a silver lining for every situation, who always found something to be glad about even in dire situations. Today, the word itself is used to refer to a person who is unusually upbeat and optimistic, perhaps overly so. There is even a concept in psychology literature called the “Pollyanna Principle” ... Read more
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The Positive Side of Power

Recently, I attended a conference on women and power. It brought together 600 business women and provided a wonderful opportunity for networking and learning. The keynote address was given by Katty Kay, the anchor for BBC World News America, and was based on her recent book, The Confidence Code. Katty spoke about the differences in confidence levels between men and women and she discussed how women can gain self-confidence by taking more risks and daring to be authentic. In her book, Katty ... Read more
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Mind Your Own Business

The following is an excerpt from the forthcoming book, 100 Ways to Start Smart and Stay Ahead in Your Career. There is a fine line between being energetic and helpful and being obnoxious. Your colleagues are all adults. They have managed to conduct their professional lives for many years without you. If something is far outside of your job description, leave it alone. For instance, you don’t need to remind your coworkers about meetings, email them weather warnings, or keep them up to date ... Read more
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