Category: Personal Growth

A Larger Ambition

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John Henry Newman once remarked that “history offers lessons, not rules.”  Imitating the path of one successful person is tempting because it’s easy, but is rarely the formula for success; we have to learn from many leaders with different stories in order to extract applicable principles as to what leadership really is. Presidential

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A Pocketful of Mentors

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Motivational speaker Jim Rohn famously remarked that  “you’re the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” ( Or, alternatively, as James Michener wrote, “Bad companions bring bad luck”)  The question is: who should these five people be?  One answer, and maybe the best one,  is “mentors.” Clearly, having

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Leader, Scale Thyself

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The most important person you ever manage is yourself.  Every person’s time talent and energy is finite, so your career advancement involves making choices about your behavior that provide the choices you want. To wit:  Facebook COO Cheryl Sandberg offers some advice in a very short article about whether you are

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It’s the Transition, not the Task

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The most successful among us, in our midst, seems to be universally good at managing themselves.  Perhaps the thing they do the best is managing their relationship with their actions; especially starting and staying the course.  This short HBR posting suggests that our greatest struggle “isn’t actually doing the thing, it’s

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The Passion Trap

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“Follow your passion”  may be in the top ten entries for career advice.  It may also be the most dangerous. This short article from Forbes, “Why Following Your Passion is Dead”, takes this advice to task as nearly certain to ruin or at least damage lives and careers. The author’s challenge

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Are You Under the Disfluence?

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Fairly or not, life is a first impression business, and as the saying goes we rarely get a second chance to make a first impression. Part of this is how we speak, especially in front of groups and how we rely on  “fillers” or “crutch words” such as “Um, “Ah”, “You know” and many others

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The Care of Our Time

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Benjamin Franklin once challenged a friend,  “Dost thou love life? Then do not squander time, for that is the stuff life is made of.” You’ll love your time more once you realize how much of it you are wasting. Start buying back some of the only resource you can’t buy more of

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Quiet Ones in Charge

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One trait we don’t normally associate with great leaders is introversion.  Instead, leaders are often chosen for a winning, outgoing personality, which, sadly, sometimes is all that disguises an “empty suit.” Recent research from the Harvard Business Review may give cheer to introverts and a new perspective to those hiring

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IQ, EQ and AQ

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For decades, the Intelligence Quotient (IQ) was the metric most focused upon in assessing one’s chances for success. In the 1990’s,  the Emotional Intelligence quotient (EQ) took on increasing importance as a predictor of career success. Now comes “AQ”.  A short Wired Magazine article provides a good overview of how AQ along

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The After 40 Effect

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The importance of emotional intelligence has been documented for years.   However, there are some very important traits that, while required for success, don’t have a visible effect on one’s career until later in life. This short HBR blog post outlines research that identifies the three personality traits that SIGNFICANTLY affect lifetime earnings,

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