Use or Lose

Use or Lose
As the old year draws to a close, many employees are scrambling to use remaining vacation time. Perhaps you saved time especially for the holidays, or, maybe you  didn’t take enough time off during the year. Now you find that you can only take so many days at one time, or that others have requested the dates before you. As a result, you simply aren’t going to be able to use all of your vacation days this year. Does it really matter? Almost all companies have policies about leave ... Read more
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The Gender Pay Gap Starts with Your First Job

The Gender Pay Gap Starts with Your First Job
A recent report called “Accelerating Pathways” which was commissioned by the Citi Foundation, had some negative employment news for millennials. The researchers polled over 5000 people aged 18-25 in cities around the world. The findings showed that the global unemployment level among youth is about 3.4 times higher than it is for the rest of society. This is not surprising. All you have to do is talk to a few recent college graduates about the job market, and you will hear how ... Read more
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Mastering the Job Jungle Gym

Mastering the Job Jungle Gym
Recently a government official was complaining on television that millennials treat their careers like a jungle gym. He further noted that they move from job to job without a real commitment. If an opportunity opens up and looks interesting, millennials move on, just like a kid running from one piece of equipment to another on a playground. Previously, careers were more analogous to a rock climbing wall than a playground. A person had to climb steadily and carefully to make it to the top. ... Read more
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Develop a Personal Strategic Plan

Develop a Personal Strategic Plan
With only a few weeks left in this calendar year, it is a good time to begin building a personal career strategic plan for your future. Strategic plans generally cover a three to five year period and are aspirational—they document what you aspire to achieve (desired outcomes) in a certain time frame. A good plan should contain a vision statement. This is a short, concise statement of what you want your career to look like in the next three to five years. Before you begin writing your plan, ... Read more
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No Problem

No Problem
I recently saw a poster that said, “Be the one who smiles, not the one who smiles back.” That made me think about several things. For example, how did smiling become a chore? When did that smile-back action become so awkward? You know the feeling. You’re minding your own business, in your usual hurry-up-and-get-this-chore done mode, and you happen to glance across the grocery store isle at an elderly woman or a child. She smiles. You feel obligated to smile back, but you ... Read more
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The Language of Leadership

The Language of Leadership
The terrorist crisis in Europe has heightened the visibility and actions of world leaders. Every speech is carefully dissected and analyzed by political pundits and news commentators. They look for hidden meanings, they take comments out of context, and they make pronouncements on limited data. Depending on the coverage, a national leader may appear strong and decisive, or weak and bumbling. Sometimes the optics take on more importance than the content or the intent. We often hear that ... Read more
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Reflect and Correct

Reflect and Correct
Friday afternoon finally arrives and you can’t wait to escape from your job. Perhaps it has been an extremely stressful or busy week. You might even think that if you have another week or two like this one, you’ll have to find a new job.  All you want to do is forget about work for the next 48 hours. Monday will come soon enough. Yet, all through the weekend, thoughts about the work week keep intruding. You feel frustrated, even angry, with yourself that you can’t simply ... Read more
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Does Your Boss Think You’re a Mind Reader?

Does Your Boss Think You’re a Mind Reader?
Are you sometimes frustrated with the interactions you have with your boss?  Do you have difficulty figuring out what exactly she wants, or how, or in what order,  you are to complete the multiple assignments she gives you? If your boss is generally organized and clear, the problem may be on your end. If you feel nervous or overwhelmed when interacting with her, you may not capture all the needed details and requests. More than likely you have asked friends and co-workers for advice.  You ... Read more
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The Optics of Optimism

The Optics of Optimism
Several times recently I have heard Presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders described as a “grouchy old man.” This label seems to have stuck despite his enthusiasm and his refusal to sink to the level of meanness demonstrated by several of his opponents. It’s not just his age (he’s the oldest of the candidates), but it seems to relate more to his optics. He reminds me of that stern-looking college professor, the one you could never quite satisfy no matter how ... Read more
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Wishing You High Adventure

Wishing You High Adventure
“Adventure is worthwhile in itself.”                Amelia Earhart What is your adventure quotient?  Are you attracted to new challenges, new places, new experiences, or new foods? Do you enjoy getting to know new people? Have you read all the volumes of “Harry Potter?” Was “Wild” your favorite movie last year?  Do you keep up with fads in clothing and music and visit trendy restaurants?  Do you have to have the newest electronics?  Do you bore easily? ... Read more
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