Stephanie Smith

3 Things To Do When You Don’t Know What To Do

If you are like the rest of us, you sometimes find yourself in situations where you don’t have a drop down menu. Your drop down menu consists of all the options your brain scans when you are confronted with an opportunity or a challenge. It works great unless your drop down menu doesn’t have an option that fits the situation, or if the drop down menu you have used previously is no longer helpful. While most of us feel quite…

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Providing Effective Feedback to Others

In the last few weeks, we’ve explored how to receive and integrate feedback that you receive on your performance or behavior.  Today, we are going to look to the other side of the equation and explore how to provide effective feedback to others.  As with receiving feedback, there are specific steps to take that will help you to provide feedback to another person in a way that will minimize defensiveness, create an opportunity for discussion, and allow for the greatest…

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Transition Management Strategies

Significant transitions and changes are incredibly stressful for almost everyone.  There are those few who thrive on big change but most of us find transitions difficult and taxing.  There are some things you can do when going through a transition – whether a job change, a reorganization at your office, a move to a new city, a divorce, or the death of a parent – to take the lead in caring for yourself and increasing your ability to succeed and…

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Integrating Feedback with Skill and Grace, Finale

In the first Integrating Feedback with Skill and Grace post we outlined the 3 key steps for integrating feedback about your performance: Work with what you’ve heard Prepare for the next meeting Meet again  Last week, we looked closely at the second step Prepare for the Next Meeting and today we’re going to focus on the final step:  Step 3. Meet Again  By now, you should have finished the first two steps of the process of integrating the feedback.  The…

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Get Comfortable with Feedback

One of the most important skills required in today’s new economy is the ability to properly accept feedback from others. Whether that feedback is in an informal discussion, a performance evaluation written by your direct supervisor, or a 360 completed by your peers, it is essential that you know how to respond appropriately to professional feedback. It probably goes without saying that when the feedback is positive it’s not hard to accept another’s opinion of us – we feel good…

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Take Action by Pausing

The world is changing and the people who will succeed need to be able to quickly learn what’s needed to move forward, apply that learning, and, most importantly, sustain that learning over time. As coaches and business consultants, we get hired because people – with the best of intentions – are struggling to (really) change those things that are getting in the way of their success. Typically, our clients know that they need to learn new skills, have often done…

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Resume Building

One aspect of your personal leadership is developing or revising your resume to show potential employers how you can be a solution to their problems. Part of career counseling is helping people know themselves well and then creating inspiring, forward-thinking, professional resumes. Employers often spend less than 30 seconds looking at a resume before they decide to keep or toss. As you are writing your resume, think about what an employer needs and remember, this is your first opportunity to…

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It’s February 13th – Do you know where your Resolutions are?

The single most difficult challenge we have faced in our consulting and coaching practice is how to help our clients make and sustain the changes they have identified as critical to their success. It is a struggle in all change management but it’s particularly poignant for individuals who understand cognitively what they need to do, but who find (over and over) that they fall back into the patterns they have relied on for much of their lives. It’s important to…

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Being Proactive in a World that Won’t Slow Down

Last week we challenged you to become a proactive employee.  In response to that post, we got a lot of email asking for guidance in how to become a proactive employee – in a world that won’t slow down.  In our twenty years of experience, we have found that proactive employees – proactive people – are successful in large part due to their ability to think strategically in planning for themselves, their departments, and (when they have the power) their…

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Are you a Proactive Employee?

In reading the new book Quiet by Susan Cain, we happened upon a very useful gem related to Career Success in the New Economy. Cain notes, “…proactive employees who take advantage of opportunities in a fast-moving, 24/7 business environment, without waiting for a leader to tell them what to do, are increasingly vital to organizational success.” Is Cain suggesting mutiny? Not likely, but let’s take a few moments to explore how we define a proactive employee and how you can…

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