Category: Uncategorized

Has it changed?

Has it changed?

With all the technology, tools and social media available to job candidates, has the job search process really changed? Yes and no.

I’m coaching some MBA students and others who are actively searching for jobs, and it surprises me that the process – with all the technology at our fingertips – is still about networking, relationships and connections.

Less than 10% of jobs are gotten through recruiters and while job sites like aggregator Indeed provide a lot of information about available jobs, networking is still critically important. “Networking is vital for those who want to move up in their career. According to HubSpot, 85% of jobs are filled through networking. In fact, according to CNBC, 70% of jobs are never published publicly,” according to ApolloTechnical.

One of the biggest mistakes that young people make is that they confuse meeting people with building relationships. It is the relationships that you develop along the way that matter most.

#WiseWords

Believe in yourself! Have faith in your abilities! Without a humble but reasonable confidence in your own powers you cannot be successful or happy.

Norman Vincent Peale

Worth the Share

This article talks about nine simple things to help you through your job search. From Do More (tip 1), to Keep Positive People in Your Life (tip 6), the tips are pretty basic and yet quite helpful for those who are in the stressed out as they search for a new job. Expand Your Targets (tip 2) and Switch Up Your Techniques (tip 3) are solid suggestions.

Two things that are not mentioned that I always recommend to job seekers:

  • Lean into your strengths. What are you really good at and how do you share those strengths during an interview?
  • Make an extra effort to prepare for each and every interview, personalize your responses so that it is clear you did the work. Understand that this journey is a marathon not a sprint and Take Care of Yourself (tip 9). Read on to learn more.
And Finally...

Okay, here is another tip. USE TECHNOLOGY! Whether you use JobScan or another resume comparison tool, make sure your resume is bot friendly, or update your LinkedIn Profile (can you please get a proper head shot?), invest the time to use the many tools that are available.

Here’s another tip: if you are looking, take advantage of the free month that LinkedIn offers for their premium service. You will be able to easily learn who is looking at your profile to follow-up with them directly, and connect directly with hiring managers.

Have a great couple of weeks,
Mary Jo

To learn more about my 1:1 executive, communication or business growth coaching, custom virtual workshops, the Career Transition program or just to connect, you can reach me at info@mjrcac.com

Have you forgotten?

Have you forgotten?

When was the last time you walked into a room to get something and forgot what you went in there to get? Recently, Elizabeth Bernstein wrote an article about memory for the WSJ, and reports that “short term, and goes on to report that “short, temporary instances of forgetfulness are happening to more of us these days” according to memory experts. Why?

We are experiencing a tremendous amount of change in our world, chronic and cumulative stress is not helping either. As one expert said: “our brains are like computers with too many tabs open right now. This slows down our processing power, and memory is one of the areas that falters.”

The advice? 1. Don’t force yourself to remember, it has the opposite effect. 2. Stop multitasking, you need to commit it to memory in the first place. 3. Help your brain calm, take a walk or meditate. 4. Be socially present, it is such a gift we give others.

#WiseWords

Forgetting happens. If you stress about it, it’ll happen even more.

Lisa Genova, author

Worth the Share

Did you know that your smart phone could be one of the culprits that is robbing you of your memory? How can that be? We all rely on those devices and in fact, on average, look at our smart phones 58 times a day.

This article talks about the importance of sharpening our memory and presents a valid business case for doing so. Our memories are critical for us to build relationships and remember those details about our clients and colleagues that really matter to them and make people feel heard.

Take a minute to read: How to Build a Stronger Memory and maybe try the suggestions offered by the author, Philip White. You will be glad you did.

And Finally...

Speaking of advice, I learn so much from my clients. The other day, I had the privilege of giving a brief talk at an awards luncheon, and spoke about five things I have learned that encourage us to live our best lives:

1. Take care of yourself physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually.
2. Give yourself grace. Perfect is the enemy.
3. Have a sense of curiosity and wonder, it opens everything up.
4. Laugh … a lot. It releases several good hormones that make you feel like you are exercising, meditating and having sex all at the same time (I’m serious!).
5. Give back to others at home and it your community, it will make a huge difference in your life.

What do you want more of this week?

Have a great couple of weeks,
Mary Jo

To learn more about my 1:1 executive, communication or business growth coaching, custom virtual workshops, the Career Transition program or just to connect, you can reach me at info@mjrcac.com

How to stop burnout

How to stop burnout

Burnout is on my mind. One of my long time clients is an amazing writer, speaker, and workshop facilitator. Recently she started coaching programs on burnout, and quickly learned that it is not her thing. Her insight… “Burnout happens in part because of bad managers. Management is more art than science.”

I think that is absolutely true. Smart leaders know that developing new and mid-level managers is critical to the success of the business. I remember years ago, when I was in a leadership role at Working Mother which published an annual list of the 100 Best Companies for Working Mothers. Renowned companies like Deloitte, IBM, Johnson & Johnson and Unilever were on the list. However, women at these very same companies made it crystal clear to me that even their companies had bad managers.

As leaders, invest in your new and mid-level managers and weed out the bad ones. Not everyone is cut out for management!

#WiseWords

Good management is the art of making problems so interesting and their solutions so constructive that everyone wants to get to work and deal with them.

Paul Hawken, author

Worth the Share

Burnout is a real issue, as is sheer exhaustion from all that is happening in the world. This well-researched article “Joy as Antidote to Burnout” includes a variety of stats and quotes to support the power of joy and the importance of connecting with others.

Shawn Achor, who is known for his work in happiness, “found that when our brains are in a positive state, we’re 31% more productive than when we’re negative or stressed.” That is an impressive stat.

Plus, the impact on work is real. This quote by Toby Haug from SAP brings to life the importance of living a whole life. “Many people still think we have work on one hand and life on the other. Yet we have one life, where work is a major part. If we’re not well and happy, that will affect both home and work.”

Take a few minutes and read this article from Thrive, then find some joy and share it with others.

And Finally...

Years back, a friend from grammar school was cleaning up her mom’s bedroom after she had passed on to the next life. My friend “Catherine” found a slip of paper between the mattress and the box-spring. Written in her mother’s beautiful penmanship were three simple words, “LIVE LIFE JOYFULLY”.

This women, like most of us, faced hardship in her lifetime, and yet, her guiding light was to be joyful. I love her intentionality around the choice she made to be joyful… and that slip of paper demonstrated it’s importance in her daily life. I will always remember Mrs. L’s smiling her big Irish smile in spite of so many challenges. Can you make the choice to “Live Life Joyfully”? .

Have a great couple of weeks,
Mary Jo

To learn more about my 1:1 executive, communication or business growth coaching, custom virtual workshops, the Career Transition program or just to connect, you can reach me at info@mjrcac.com

What is your purpose today?

What is your purpose today?

One of the things I love about my role as an Executive Coach is that I coach a variety of professionals – senior leaders, entrepreneurs, C-Suite execs, mid-level managers, and even a few people under 25. “Variety is the spice of life”, or so I have heard. As a result, I feel very plugged into what professionals are experiencing right now.

These days, as the Covid pandemic shifts to this new phase of being endemic, many of us realize that along with all of this change, we as individuals have changed. One of my clients no longer has tolerance for an unhealthy work environment, another cherishes her time working remotely and no longer commuting, and still another is re-evaluating how far up the corporate ladder she wants to climb, or maybe she wants to stop climbing all together. For some, money no longer is the end goal but having a life worth living is.

What does this mean for each of us individually, for our families and for our  companies who are trying to hire people like us?

#WiseWords

In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity..

Albert Einstein

Worth the Share

This short article from HBR tackles the topic of how the pandemic has changed us all, and the importance of redefining our purpose. It is well worth reading.

John Coleman, the author, highlights four areas to think about as we reset our lives post Covid:

  1. Identify what is permanent: what are your major sources of purpose today?
  2. Reject stagnation: what in your life do you want to reinvent?
  3. Learn to let go: move forward, don’t just run from your current situation.
  4. Embrace others: we all lived through this pandemic, reach out to others.

If you are struggling as we move through this period, reach out to friends, family, or professionals to keep growing and living your best life.

And Finally...

“Being intentional” is one of my favorite phrases. It gives us a chance to take a breath, think about what is the best thing to do in the moment, and ponder what matters.

When coaching a new client this afternoon about leadership, he was singularly focused on telling his team what to do, making sure everything was done exactly the way he wanted it done. Well guess what? That type of leadership style does not work for everyone.

When my client took a step back and thought about what he could do differently, being intentional moved to the top of the list. What he says, the words he uses, how he guides his team and why it helps to understand what motivates his team members are all things to consider. Be intentional.

Have a great couple of weeks,
Mary Jo

To learn more about my 1:1 executive, communication or business growth coaching, custom virtual workshops, the Career Transition program or just to connect, you can reach me at info@mjrcac.com

How do they do it?

How do they do it?

Did you ever work for someone who makes you feel valued? Who makes you feel special? With The Great Resignation in full swing, companies are losing talent left and right. Monday’s WSJ talked about tech companies moving to cash bonuses instead of stock options. Of course, that makes sense, cash is immediate but is cash the only thing that will entice a good employee to stay? There is a real lack of talent in many industries. How do you keep your employees from answering those constant calls from recruiters? How do you get them to stay?

One of my clients is struggling with this and came to the conclusion that yes, money matters. Make sure that your team members (and you too) are being compensated at market levels. It is important to note that there are many other ways to get your employees to remain on the job and highly motivated. First, we talked about really understanding each of his DRs (direct reports) and what motivates them. People are different. And if you don’t know what motivates them, you have to figure it out.

#WiseWords

Doing nothing is very hard to do… you never know when you’re finished.

Leslie Nielsen

Worth the Share

We all know that retaining top talent is a challenge for many organizations. This article from the new issue of HBR talks about the importance of making the superstars on your team feel special. It is not always about money.

In any company, unique talent can “create outcomes that wouldn’t be possible if they disappeared. You can’t pigeonhole them into a category and expect to keep them happy.”

Here are three things from the article that you should never do to your superstar performers:

  • Never dismiss their ideas: it is critical that they have a seat at the table, that they feel heard
  • Never block their development: stall their career trajectory at your own peril, keep them challenged and growing
  • Never pass up a chance to praise them: make sure it is specific and intentional praise, not generic. Make them feel special

Read The Real Secret of Retaining Talent: The subtle art of making people feel special by Roger L. Martin for solid tips and a sad story about the football player, Aaron Rogers.

 

And Finally...

Back to motivation. Here is a crazy way to think about what motivates each of your team members. Do you know about the Five Love Languages? It is designed for relationships BUT four of the five languages can be viewed through the lens of what motivates your team members. Here are the five love languages and how you can use them in business:

  1. Time Spent: Take your team member to lunch or dinner for some 1:1 time, especially now that we can get out and about.

  2. Acts of Service: Do something for them to help them be more successful, maybe take something off their plate if they are buried.

  3. Gifts: Something unexpected is always fun, one of my clients uses Drizly, or send out gift cards to a favorite restaurant. The more creative the better.

  4. Words of Affirmation: See the article above, make sure you are being specific and thoughtful with your praise.

  5. Touch: Okay, this is NOT applicable to business. Don’t even think about it!

What motivates you? What is your love language?

Have a great couple of weeks,
Mary Jo

To learn more about my 1:1 executive, communication or business growth coaching, custom virtual workshops, the Career Transition program or just to connect, you can reach me at info@mjrcac.com

Are you an Inspirational Leader?

Are you an Inspirational Leader?

Emotional Intelligence is a deep, rich topic. One of the components of EI is inspirational leadership. This competency is especially important today as so many professionals are disenfranchised about work. Many managers I coach are feeling warn down by their team members who are underperforming and don’t seem to care about the quality of their work.

Or do they? As managers, it is our job to hire well. That is the first step. Then, we need to figure out, for each of our team members, what they need from us to help them succeed. One client managed a woman who went to him frequently with problems and no solutions. It drove him crazy. Time and time again he asked her to bring solutions. She didn’t. After we dug deeper into the situation, he realized that she did not have the skills. He needed to teach her, create a safe space for her to fail and inspire her to grow. As a leader, how effective are you at inspiring others?

#WiseWords

hen people are financially invested, they want a return. When people are emotionally invested, they want to contribute.

Simon Sinek

Worth the Share

With all of the change that has occurred over the last couple of years, many of us are exhausted. Employee burnout is real, some professionals are distracted and others are disenchanted with their jobs or professions. This article from Gallup caught my attention because it provides clear, simple areas of focus for managers. As managers, there is a lot that we can do to make a difference with our team members. 7 People Management Skills You Need to Succeed This Year highlighted these areas:

  1. Build relationships – create alliances, take the time to get to know others even in this virtual world, build trust
  2. Develop people – help them to grow professionally and remain engaged at work
  3. Lead change – lean into the the future and how you will get there as a team
  4. Inspire others – encourage others through vision, positivity, and an environment of what can be
  5. Think critically – listen, evaluate, challenge and make smart, collaborative decisions
  6. Communicate clearly – be an effective, concise communicator, make sure you are heard
  7. Create accountability – have an engaged team with shared ownership and clear goals

Make one or two topics each quarter and further develop your leadership skills to create a workplace that is thriving – even during these crazy Covid days. Read on to learn more.

And Finally...

Another of the twelve components of Emotional Intelligence as outlined by Daniel Goleman is positivity. I’ve written about this before. When I first saw it listed, it took me by surprise. Positivity, really? Well, during these days when bad news seems to be everywhere, positivity matters!

In the article above, Gallup incorporated positivity as a component of inspiring others, and while I agree with that, I do think that positivity should stand on its own. Being positive matters. Who wants to work for someone who is negative all the time? It’s depressing.

For those of you who know me, you won’t be surprised that Positivity is one of my top five Gallup Strengths. What are your top five strengths? Reach out if you’d like to explore your strengths in greater depth.

Have an inspiring week.
Mary Jo

To learn more about my 1:1 executive, communication or business growth coaching, custom virtual workshops, the Career Transition program or just to connect, you can reach me at info@mjrcac.com

Do you have them?

Do you have them?

Boundaries. I am hearing that word a lot lately. My clients want boundaries. According to Webster’s Dictionary, a boundary is: “something that indicates or fixes a limit or extent.”

With remote work, many of us have lost our boundaries – have lost that “fixed limit”. The commute to and from work used to be a buffer that separated work and home, and now it is gone. Technology blurs boundaries all the time, we can be reached anytime, anywhere.

How are your boundaries? Is your work blending into and possibly negatively impacting your home life?

When coaching clients, we talk about various tactics to honor boundaries, such as:

  • communicate your expectations clearly about what you can and can’t do
  • delegate to others, learn to let go a bit
  • prioritize yourself, your health and what matters to you
  • set limits, such as not taking any calls after 6PM, maybe with one exception per week
  • practice saying no graciously “I have 5 projects right now, I can start that one on March 1st.”


What works for you?

#WiseWords

Daring to set boundaries is about having the courage to love ourselves even when we risk disappointing others.

Brene Brown, researcher and author

Worth the Share

After living with the impact of Covid for almost two years, many professionals have re-evaluated their relationship with work. The Great Resignation is real. As you probably heard, 4.5 million people walked off the job in November, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, a record high.

This article from Thrive is especially interesting because it digs into the numbers and talks about the reset that is happening with a lot of professionals. “According to a recent global survey by Future Forum, 76% of workers want more flexibility about where they work, and 93% want greater flexibility on when they work.

But it’s not flexibility for its own sake — behind the desire for flexibility is a desire to recalibrate our relationship between our  lives and our work. That’s what’s at the heart of the Great Re-valuation. People want their lives to come first.

The article’s title makes a bold statement: Now Is the Time for  “Life-Work Integration”: Going from work-life balance to work- life integration to life-work integration.

Are you ready to make a shift from striving for work-life balance to begin focusing on life-work integration?

And Finally...
If you are feeling radical, and want to read something that will help you reframe your approach to time, and maybe even positively impact burnout, read Effortless: Make It Easy to Do What Matters, by Greg McKeown.

According to the summary, the book teaches you to:
 
  • Turn tedious tasks into enjoyable rituals
  • Prevent frustration by solving problems before they arise
  • Set a sustainable pace instead of powering through
  • Make one-time choices that eliminate many future decisions
  • Simplify your processes by removing unnecessary steps
  • Make relationships easier to maintain and manage
  • And much more

Personally, I love Greg’s concept of setting a sustainable pace as it allows me to be more fully present. Oddly, I also get more accomplished.

Have a great, boundary-setting week,
Mary Jo

To learn more about my 1:1 executive, communication or business growth coaching, custom virtual workshops, the Career Transition program or just to connect, you can reach me at info@mjrcac.com

What is your word?

What is your word?

Since last month, many of us started to talk about how we planned to make a shift in one way or another in the new year. A surprising number started to talk about a word that would be their mantra for 2022. One word that would inspire them, challenge them or drive them forward.

One of my client’s said her word is … “no”. She emphatically stated that she will say no to people and things that take her off course. She wants, and feels that she needs to set boundaries so that she can live a less stressful life.

Another client’s word? “Impact”. She is on a journey to make a larger impact in at her new job, as she leads a team and chooses to live a full life outside of her career.

And a dear friend and fellow Executive Coach said his word is “clarity”. He has a lot on his plate and said using the word “clarity” will help to push him forward.

Choosing the right word can bring you clarity too.

#WiseWords

I like good strong words that mean something.

Louisa May Alcott (from “Little Women”)

Worth the Share

My clients aren’t the only ones thinking about using a word to set an intention for the year. Here is a list of 15 words from an article on the Thrive website. In scanning the list, here are my top three favorites and the reasons why…IMHO.

Gratitude – living with gratitude can make a tremendous impact on how you see you world, in a positive way. What are you grateful for today?

Grace – one of my favorite words. We beat ourselves up way too much, and are too hard on ourselves. Can you give yourself some grace?

Discipline – often easier said than done. When we are disciplined, taking it one step at a time, it is very empowering. What can you be more disciplined about?

Read on to find other words that might inspire you.

And Finally...

Okay, you knew I was going to ask. What is your word or phrase for 2022?

What intention do you want to set for the year ahead? Speaking of intention, my word last year was “intentional”, and it served me well throughout the year.

This year, my word is “joy” and I’m pretty pumped up about it. The world is in a really difficult place on so many levels. I’m going to face it with joy.

What about you? What is your word?

Wishing you and yours a playful creative year,

Mary Jo

To learn more about my 1:1 executive, communication or business growth coaching, custom virtual workshops, the Career Transition program or just to connect, you can reach me at info@mjrcac.com

Do you tap into your creativity?

Do you tap into your creativity?

Happy New Year! I hope you were able to take a break for a few days, and return to work refreshed and recharged.

Before the holiday break, I facilitated a discussion with a senior leader who was speaking about the key traits that make him a successful leader. Beyond being a good listener, taking risks, and building relationships, he spoke about the importance of being creative.

Creativity enables us to make connections where others may not see them, maybe looking at the “white space” to see what’s not there yet. As a leader, encouraging creativity in yourself and your team is critical for business growth. Take time to allow creativity to flourish, lean into collaboration, give yourself and your team permission to fail.

All of us have the ability to be creative, encourage it in yourself and others.

#WiseWords

If you want creative workers, give them enough time to play.

John Cleese

Worth the Share

Having a sense of wonder, being open to the world, spurs creativity.

In his new book, Tracking Wonder: Reclaiming a Life of Meaning and Possibility in a World Obsessed with Productivity, Jeff Davis challenges conventional thinking.

Here are Jeff’s five highlights from his book.

  1. Wonder is multifaceted: openness and curiosity, bewilderment and hope, connection and admiration
  2. Wonder is not kid’s stuff, it’s radical grown-up stuff: choose wonder to reclaim your childhood spirit
  3. Follow your curiosities instead of your passion: find fulfillment by exploring something that may even be a bit quirky
  4. Fertilize instead of flee from confusion: a sense of wonder can help us see things beyond our habitual patterns
  5. Open up, instead of size up, other people: “wonder is the quiet disrupter of unseen biases … momentarily dissolving our habitual patterns of seeing and thinking”

You can read more detail on Jeff’s 5 highlights here or pick up a copy of his book to really dig into the transforming concept of wonder.

To learn more about the power of music, read Why Music Is The Essential Ingredient.

And Finally...

Adults who take the time to play, reap the benefits of being more creative, they are healthier and happier, and more productive. Hanging out with little people is a great way to get adults to play. Crawl on the floor, build a sand castle, or play hide and seek.

To learn more about play at work, here is a TED talk for 2008, Tim Brown Tales of Creativity and Play.

Wishing you and yours a playful creative year,

Mary Jo

To learn more about my 1:1 executive, communication or business growth coaching, custom virtual workshops, the Career Transition program or just to connect, you can reach me at info@mjrcac.com

It is time to reflect

It is time to reflect

The other day, another executive coach asked a few of us: “What is something that you learned about yourself this year?” And as a follow-up: “ How might that learning impact what you do differently in 2022? ”.

These are both great questions to reflect on. As we wind down 2021, take a moment to think about the past year. One of my favorite questions that I ask myself regularly is: “What do I want more of in my life?” And the opposite: “What do I want less of in my life”.

We are all moving so fast. Take a couple of hours to reflect. Change your location by going outside to the beach or a park, or sitting in a coffee shop, and answer those questions. Then think about your goals and maybe something you want to let go of in 2022. Write it down. You will be glad you did!

#WiseWords

Reflective thinking turns experience into insight.

John C. Maxwell

Worth the Share

As you think back on 2021, think about your work. Are you a stressed out people manager? In just the last year, the burnout for people managers increased from 28% in 2020 to 35% in 2021.

This research from Gallup is upsetting to read but not surprising – with the ongoing global pandemic, supply-chain shortages, remote work, new Covid variants, rising inflation, political unrest etc., we are living though very challenging times. This affects us and the people we manage at work. As I am sure you have heard, mental health issues are at an all time high and there is a record number of us quitting our jobs.

This article highlights the challenge and provides some ideas. The first thing is recognize this is a real issue that could be affecting you and your team(s) and put energy and resources behind addressing it. Read on to learn more.

To learn more about the power of music, read Why Music Is The Essential Ingredient.

And Finally...

Personally, I am going to take some time to reflect on the past year and what I want more of in 2022. One thing I know, I want more group coaching, 1:1 coaching and the ability to create and deliver custom workshops. It fires me up. If you know anyone who might want to learn more, reach out. Recommendations are appreciated.

And finally, it is the Christmas season. I will be taking off the last two weeks of December and will be back in touch in January.

Enjoy the Holiday Season with family and friends. Take time to reflect.

Sending you my best,

Mary Jo

To learn more about my 1:1 executive, communication or business growth coaching, custom virtual workshops, the Career Transition program or just to connect, you can reach me at info@mjrcac.com