Approaching the Point of No Return at Work

Approaching the Point of No Return at Work
Today the phrase “Crossing the Rubicon'” is used in a variety of ways (think Jeep Rubicon, a popular car choice.) In case you have forgotten the historical origin, it refers to a choice made by Julius Caesar in 49 BC when he crossed the Rubicon River, a geographic boundary that he was forbidden by Roman law from bridging. Today we use the phrase to mean “a point of no return.” There are rubicons in our lives are formed by laws, rules, oaths, and promises. Our ... Read more
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Who is Managing Your Talent?

Who is Managing Your Talent?
“Talent management” entered the common organizational lexicon about 2001. It’s a human resource concept that includes everything done “to recruit, retain, develop, reward, and make people perform” so that an organization can reach its business goals. Talent management focuses on an employee’s potential and how that can be developed to ensure a return on investment for the employer. The term may sound impersonal, but organizations spend significant dollars ... Read more
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Are You Ready for Self-Management at Work?

Are You Ready for Self-Management at Work?
I’m a fan of Zappos online shoes. I especially like the ease of the ordering process and the customer service. Therefore, I was interested when I saw an article about Zappos in Fortune Magazine. I was especially intrigued to read about the Zappos CEO instituting  holacracy. Holacracy can be loosely defined as a management system where traditional hierarchical systems are replaced by a distribution of power among self-organizing groups and overlapping work circles. Individuals, in ... Read more
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Failing at Leadership Can Make You a Stronger Leader

Failing at Leadership Can Make You a Stronger Leader
You have been told by colleagues and mentors that you have leadership potential. You realize that leaders are made, not born, and for the past year or two you have been honing your leadership skill set. You’ve done a lot of reading and observing. You have taken leadership seminars and inventories. You can’t wait to put what you have learned to work. Finally, the opportunity arises. You are assigned the job of project leader. You are given a great deal of flexibility, but there ... Read more
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Can Decluttering Lead to Happiness and Success?

Can Decluttering Lead to Happiness and Success?
The concept of decluttering has caught national fire. Two recent best-selling books describe how your life will change and be filled with joy if only you “tidy up.” Compared to other countries, Americans do have too much stuff.  We are a consumer society, and most of us want the latest trends and newest gadgets (think iPhones). We have attics, basements, and garages crammed with stuff. Since our apartments and houses are full, we purchase storage sheds and pay costly rental fees ... Read more
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Self-talk vs. Self-deception

Self-talk vs. Self-deception
Positive self-talk is a bit like being a personal cheerleader. By using a strengths perspective (based on your own strengths) you focus on what you have to offer, not on what you lack. You stop emphasizing  the negatives and your deficits, and, instead, acknowledge and grow the talents you possess. Self-talk is an important psychological concept. It is a powerful influence, and it can be a partial antidote to insecurity and perceived vulnerability. When used appropriately, self-talk can ... Read more
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Memories are Made of This

Memories are Made of This
Did you get up this morning and groan at the thought of another day in the office? Is your day packed with the usual interminable meetings, the predictable lunch choices, the frequent equipment problems, and the same petty squabbles between your co-workers? Despite being good at your job, does it often seem like you are sleep walking, perhaps even sleep working, through your day? In a long career, there may be a rather small number of memorable work days. These probably include days when ... Read more
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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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Belief Bending

Belief Bending
We all arrive at adulthood with some things we believe as absolute truths and firm rules.  Some of these we learned from our families. Perhaps some were learned in religious training or in educational programs. For example, you may believe all people are basically good, and that forgiveness is a virtue. You may believe that everyone deserves a second chance, or you may think some actions are so egregious that there is no recovery from them. Similarly, you may or may not believe people can ... 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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