How To Shift An Unproductive Communication Spiral

How To Shift An Unproductive Communication Spiral

Ever feel like you are stuck in a frustrating and unproductive communication spiral?  One where you, and the other involved, keep saying the same things but nothing is getting resolved? At times like this, you probably feel like you’ve tried everything humanly possible to get the other person to understand you, but it simply isn’t…

Time. Squandered or Invested?

Time. Squandered or Invested?

Ever feel like you just squandered your time?  Why?  You chose to spend that time exactly as you did, so why do you feel like you wasted it? I just spent the last twenty minutes staring at the scene pictured above.  A few unpleasant thoughts crossed my mind during that twenty minutes… You know, those…

One Tip For Immediate Stress Relief

One Tip For Immediate Stress Relief

As a young, highly motivated, corporate-ladder-climber, I had an urgent desire to establish my credibility as a great manager. As such, I set out to demonstrate my understanding of complex issues, implementing solutions, and getting results.  These were reasonable goals for developing leader, but for me that meant I always had to be right.  I…

Workplace Conflict. What Would You Do?

Workplace Conflict. What Would You Do?

Have you ever felt stuck in the middle of workplace conflict?  I don’t mean the one stirring the pot – that’s a topic for another day.  I’m talking about being in a position where two people, in conflict, are “confiding” in you.  Giving you their side of the story and justifying their positions and behaviors,…

Truths for Consistently Being Your Best

Truths for Consistently Being Your Best

What do we need to do to consistently show-up as our best selves?  For starters, we all know we need to eat right, exercise, and get enough rest. Being your best isn’t about becoming an Olympic athlete, although one could argue the same principles apply. It is about maintaining your health, fostering important relationships, staying…

Self Awareness. Cultivate It or Suffer The Consequences

Self Awareness. Cultivate It or Suffer The Consequences

Just about the time I think I have the whole “self awareness” thing locked down, I get reminded it is an ongoing practice – a journey, not a destination.  Sometimes my reminder comes in the form of a question like “Everything OK?” or worse “What’s your problem?!” (Truly, I rarely get that second one!) Sometimes…

Empathy.  So Powerful But Often Misunderstood

Empathy. So Powerful But Often Misunderstood

We all know showing empathy is an important part of building effective relationships, right?  We’ve also all heard empathy is not the same as sympathy. Most of us even know it is a better interpersonal communication choice than sympathy.  But do we really know what empathy is, how to extend it, and perhaps more importantly…

One Bad Attitude Could Spoil The Whole Bunch

One Bad Attitude Could Spoil The Whole Bunch

This is a true story about a bright, ambitious, twenty-three-year-old who started showing up to work every day with a bad attitude.  She’d sigh big, heavy sighs of exasperation, and wouldn’t speak to her coworkers – except the ones who would listen to her complain during lunch hour.  If she didn’t absolutely have to, this…

Mediation: Happy Ending or Sad Result?

Mediation: Happy Ending or Sad Result?

“You know it was a good mediation if everyone leaves unhappy and you ended up settling somewhere in the middle.”  I’ve heard that sentiment often. In fact, I know colleagues who use it as part of their opening remarks during mediation. Sound good to you?  I hope not. I completely disagree with that sentiment.  As…

Self-Development: You’ll Be Glad You Did

Self-Development: You’ll Be Glad You Did

Recently, I had a terrific discussion with a successful, respected, high-ranking organizational leader with the Department of Interior.  We were talking about his recipe for success, and what he looks for when considering the potential of others. A passion for self development made his list of top-three characteristics, when assessing an individual’s capacity for success…

Want to be a great leader? Start here

Want to be a great leader? Start here

Have you ever had a boss you considered to be a great leader?  I have, twice.  Over the years I’ve spent time considering what made them great, as compared to others who ranged from ‘absolutely horrible, have no business having authority over other people” to solidly “good”. Of course, there are several characteristics that differentiate great…

Don’t Give up! 5 Tips To Meet Your Goals

Don’t Give up! 5 Tips To Meet Your Goals

An executive, whom I greatly admired, once told me “if you aren’t meeting them by June, you will not meet your goals for the entire year.”  I took those words to heart and for the next 2 years, with great stress and feelings of inadequacy, I mentally gave up on any goals my organization was…