21 New Years Resolutions 2015 Style

new years resolutionsNew Years Resolutions are great. I have made them for as long as I can remember and have often been able to keep them to some degree. What is it about the calendar year flipping forward that makes me want to reinvent myself? It feels like a fresh start, an opportunity to try again where I have failed in the past. You know that goals can be set anytime, anywhere and for any reason. Yet there is something about a shiny new year that makes me feel hopeful that anything I choose to accomplish is within my reach. (more…)

The Secret to Overnight Success

overnight successThe secret to overnight success is that it takes years. Years of practice, trial and error, and failures that only lead to success through determination and perseverance.

If there truly is a secret to success, those in the know are keeping it to themselves.

For the rest of us, there is only dedication to the big picture and a process you must invest in over time.

P.S. If short blog posts are good enough for Seth Godin, then why not follow in successful footsteps.

The Secret to Overnight Success

is diligence.

Increase Productivity

Increase Productivity

How To Increase Productivity at Work

Increase ProductivityWhat would you say if I told you that to increase productivity at work you should take a vacation?

Terrific, I guess that’s the end of this post.

But just in case you need some more convincing let me make the case for increased productivity, according to the experts. Don’t just take my word for it.

A 2010 study by Grawitch and Barber published in Consulting Psychology Journal relates that taking time off, like a vacation, will reduce employee stress. It’s not the first and probably won’t be the last study to come to the same conclusion.

The importance of the study and what made it different from those before it was in recognizing that when we leave it all behind, our brain gets the chance to renew. And when I say leave it all behind, I mean don’t take ANY work with you on vacay.

It’s important to let your mind completely disengage from work related issues. It seems that being able to disengage entirely lets us rediscover the attributes we brought to the job in the first place. The daily anxiety and stress that builds up goes away and we renew our mental assets which includes creativity and that will increase productivity.

This creativity quotient is REALLY important. It doesn’t matter what your job entails, when you bring more creativity to that job, your problem solving abilities increase as do your innovation and insight, all important traits that boost productivity.

Increase Productivity Through Increased Creativity

Additional studies are finding that time spent on the Internet everyday are another way we actually disengage and renew as well. While most employers are worried about decreased employee productivity from surfing the net, studies are proving that we actually waste more energy forcing ourselves not to take the break. In fact The National University of Singapore discovered that employees that spent less than 20% of their time surfing the net were 9% more productive than employees that didn’t. That’s pretty astounding and interesting in terms of the 80-20 rule.

Seems counter-intuitive but its true. Giving your brain the chance to have fun time boosts productivity when you do buckle down to work. The trick is to not get sucked in to the Internet and waste time or use it to procrastinate. By using a timer to help you time the length of a break and the frequency of breaks, you can increase productivity and enjoy your work.

So go on vacation and leave all your work behind. Try new things, read for pleasure and let your brain play. When you get back to the office you should notice increased productivity compared to before the vacation. The more you increase productivity the better your flow and the more success you should achieve at work.

Take my advice and don’t feel guilty about being away and disconnecting, and don’t skip the vacation time. Take a vacation and increase productivity.

Digital Literacy

Digital Literacy

Digital Literacy – It’s Time For A New Definition

Digital literacy is a term coined by academics for academics about academics. At least that used to be the case. When I first came across the term around three years ago, the only books I could find on the subject were academic treatises that were difficult to digest at best and weighty at worst.

The common theme around the term digital literacy, however, was always centered around literacy in terms of learning and using technology in the classroom. It was often synonymous or closely regarded with terms like information literacy, computer literacy and media literacy. While some of these terms were getting closer, I feel the academic world was doing the rest of us a disservice by co-opting the phrase for themselves. Even the US government website was focused on literacy in the classroom for our young people and not a broader terminology of literacy in the digital world.

I’m happy to report that things are changing. When I Google the phrase, “digital literacy” now, the definitions are getting broader and I believe that’s a very good thing. Because as the phrase suggests, digital literacy should be a far reaching terminology that encompasses the enormous paradigm shift that has occurred in our digital world over the last 20 years.


Effective Leadership

Effective Leadership

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Effective Leadership Requires Diligence

Effective LeadershipSeptember always feels like the beginning. The beginning of school, the beginning of my favorite season, the beginning of a new year; I guess that’s because I loved school, my birthday is in the Fall and duh, Halloween!

Fall is a time when everything seems possible again. No matter how beat down or tired the calendar year has made me, the air is crisp in my lungs and possibility seems tangible.

This is the time to reevaluate. Steer toward your goals and course correct if you need to. Whether they be personal or business goals, take the time to reflect on where you’re headed and if any changes could get you there faster, better or stronger.

Don’t hesitate to make those changes in your business when it becomes obvious the “old” way isn’t working any more. Effective leadership requires you to see distractions and sidetracks that have you veered away from your original intent and to take corrective action now. (more…)

Business Coaching

Business Coaching

business coachingIs Business Coaching Really Necessary for Small Business Owners?

Let me start by saying, I’m not in the business coaching arena.

A coach is someone who uses their knowledge to guide an individual or team toward better results. And whether we are referring to sports, business or life, a coach simply employs tools and methods to facilitate achievement.

I’ve always considered myself a consultant. Someone that a business employs to perform a certain set of expert tasks. Is this coaching? Not really. A consultant’s goal is not to teach you how to do the work, but to take the load from you and get it done for you so you can concentrate on the things you do BEST. Do consultants end up educating their clients? Of course we do. But not with the intent of making the client self-sustainable which is why it’s not coaching.

So why is business coaching (and a plethora of other types of coaching) so immensely popular today?