Don’t Stop Investing in Your Future

Don’t Stop Investing in Your Future
The Flint, Michigan lead poisoning crisis has been heartbreaking to watch. It is difficult to imagine how the parents are managing the uncertainty of possible harm to their children. In response to this critical issue, many news commentators have been interviewing civic engineers and other experts about similar problems. The consensus opinion seems to be that 30 years or so ago, the United States stopped investing in infrastructure improvements for bridges, roads, dams, and similar ... Read more
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Optics and Alcohol

Optics and Alcohol
Recently, a local newspaper had a special section on charity events. The majority of the events reported were fund raising galas. Looking at the newspaper page as a whole, several things jumped out. First, was that most of the pictures had attractive young women in them. Often there was a man in the center of the photograph with his arms around young women pulled close to his body. The caption for each picture could have been “Senator So-and-So and his girls,” or “Big Boss ... Read more
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Accomplishment is Temporary

Accomplishment is Temporary
We all know someone who constantly brings up their past, especially the achievements from their youth. There is the high school sports star who mentions that championship soccer game every chance she gets. Or the friend who had the starring role in a college production and tells you about it every time you attend a concert or movie. And there is the colleague who had a piece of poetry published, or the one who won the debate contest. You’ve heard all of the stories many times, and you ... Read more
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When Your Boss Sees You as Competition

When Your Boss Sees You as Competition
There are probably few things harder to manage in the workplace than having a boss who considers you to be a competitor rather than a colleague. This may have little to do with your actual behavior or performance. Instead, it occurs when an insecure boss realizes how smart or how competent you are. Perhaps your good reputation preceded you, or you are better educated, hold more degrees, or have received more public recognition. Maybe you simply have worked hard and are on a fast track. Now, ... Read more
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Being Strident is Not Something to Strive For

Being Strident is Not Something to Strive For
We frequently hear the word “strident” linked to women. It is rarely used in a sentence when a man is the subject. Instead it’s a harsh word used to describe women who are passionate, angry. forceful, or powerful. It’s used as a ploy to slow down actions, to discount ideas and discredit the person behind the idea. It is mostly a put down for a strong woman (think about Trump labeling Hillary strident). Strident, as a label, can be hard to overcome. It can undermine ... Read more
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Keep the Mentoring Relationship Focused on Your Career

Keep the Mentoring Relationship Focused on Your Career
We often hear that a mentor is particularly useful, perhaps even essential, if you plan to  build an outstanding career. There are numerous stories and legends written about being the protégé of some well-known business mogul, or a renowned artistic director, or a championship coach. Most of us, however, will never have quite that level of access, and, if we are honest with ourselves, many of us have more modest talent than that 20-something multimillionaire or that Olympic athlete. Does ... Read more
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Blurring the Work Life Divide

Blurring the Work Life Divide
We frequently hear how difficult it is to keep work from infringing on our personal lives. Technology allows work to be done anywhere, and we can be accessible 24/7. If you have the option of working from home, the dividing line can be blurred even further. It takes some discipline to remain focused on work tasks when there are competing domestic chores and familial responsibilities. If you work in an agency or organization that requires your presence every day, your personal life may still ... Read more
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Selling Yourself

Selling Yourself
It’s impossible to turn on your television or any news channel and not see and hear Presidential candidates talking about themselves and their accomplishments. They all claim outstanding records. They explain away any failures or inconsistencies in their past records. They take credit for a huge variety of successes from solving international crises to assisting small communities during difficult times. Regardless of fact checkers disputing what the candidates claim, they continue ... Read more
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Digital Stalking and Office Boundaries

Digital Stalking and Office Boundaries
If you are part of the millennial generation, you probably have an expansive social network. You may not put too much emphasis on protecting your own privacy, and you are very good at online research and at finding personal information about others. For example, before you accepted your new job, you carefully checked out the organization, its business practices, and its top leadership. You did a thorough search that didn’t stop with business issues. You also know what the CEO’s ... Read more
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The Three Words You Must Never Say

The Three Words You Must Never Say
Recently. I was lucky enough to come across a little book called “Fail, Fail Again, Fail Better.” The author, Pema Chodron, is an American-born Buddhist nun. The book contains the commencement address she gave at her granddaughter’s college graduation. The title was intriguing, and it made me want to see why she was encouraging failure. While the text of the book is sparse (taking up only 80 pages), the message is anything but. While I hope you will read the text in its ... Read more
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