By k | November 2, 2014 - 6:00 am - Posted in Corporate Games

I started my business career
in auditing.
One of the things we looked for
was employees who didn’t take vacation.
These folks were automatically
looked at with suspicion.
Why?
Because employees who steal from companies
don’t want anyone doing their jobs
while they’re on vacation.

I ALWAYS used my allotted vacation time.
I sometimes used it
to go to a convention
my company wouldn’t give me approval for
and
I’d always look at competitive products
in the area I was vacationing.

Bob Corliss,
CEO of Robert Talbott, Inc.,
shares

“Worried about appearances?
The company approved your time off.
Just remind your boss who will cover for you;
the boss is now happy.
So go, relax,
and then come back re-energized.”

Use your vacation time.

By k | September 22, 2014 - 6:00 am - Posted in Corporate Games

As yet another executive
is busted
for lying on his resume

about having a college degree,
business builders should ask themselves
“Is being college educated
a must-have
for their employees?”

In some fields,
the answer is absolutely
‘YES!’

I’m a designated accountant.
My four years of post high school education
focused on accounting rules
and situations.
I then studied even more
to secure my designation.
I’m required,
by my professional membership,
to keep current,
and when I was practicing,
I relied heavily on this training,
a training almost impossible to replicate
without formal education.

I would prefer to hire
an accountant
with a degree/designation.

Clearly, it makes no sense
to prefer to hire
a communications expert
with a college degree.
The senior executive at Wal-mart
was doing a great job
without a degree
(which is why he was being promoted).

Are you valuing a college degree
more than talent, hard work or experience?
Why?

By k | March 21, 2014 - 6:00 am - Posted in Corporate Games

The colors we wear
and surround ourselves with
matter.
They influence moods
and change behaviors.

Which color not to wear?
Orange.

“According to a CareerBuilder study
of more than 2,000 HR professionals
and hiring managers,
orange is the worst colour
to wear to a job interview
and is the hue most likely
to be associated with someone
who is unprofessional.
About a quarter of respondents (23%)
recommended wearing blue,
followed by black (15%)”*

Avoid wearing orange.

*March CPA Magazine

By k | March 9, 2014 - 6:00 am - Posted in Corporate Games

I’m an introvert,
someone who is drained
by being with other people.

This doesn’t mean I’m quiet.
I’ve learned long ago
that quiet people are often overlooked.

This also doesn’t mean
I don’t have an executive presence.

As Nick Marsh,
managing director of
Harvey Nash Executive Search Asia Pacific,
shares

“Many introverted people feel
they’re at a disadvantage,
but you can have strong executive presence
and be the introverted type.
Executive presence doesn’t mean
you have to be the most extroverted person
in a room.
Quite often, it’s the exact opposite.
Executive presence is being
the person in the room
that people gravitate toward,
and when that person makes a remark,
everyone else is quiet,
since they value their thoughts
and respect them.”

Stop using being an introvert
as an excuse.
You can be as successful
as any extrovert.

By k | November 17, 2013 - 6:00 am - Posted in Corporate Games

My figure skating coach
once told me
that the sign
of a great figure skater
was she made skating
look easy.

The truly great
do this.
They make very difficult tasks
look easy.

In the November/December
The Costco Connection,
Astronaut Chris Hadfield
shares

“On paper,
my career trajectory looks preordained:
engineer, fighter pilot,
test pilot, astronaut.
Typical path for someone
in this line of work,
straight as a ruler.
But that’s not how it really was.
There were hairpin curves
and dead ends
all the way along.
I wasn’t destined
to be an astronaut.
I had to turn myself into one.”

Just because something looks easy
doesn’t mean it IS easy.
Even the truly great
have to work.

By k | November 7, 2013 - 6:00 am - Posted in Corporate Games

William Arruda
shares

““Busy” is the most common reason
people give me
for not doing anything
to build their brand
so they can advance their career.
They make time for emails
and meetings and teleconferences,
but they don’t capture
the true benefits of all those activities.
Working in their career
is getting in the way of
working on their career.
Sound familiar?

Well, here’s
the one personal branding habit
you can’t be too busy for.

Document your wins.
What’s the easiest way to do that?
Keep a job journal.”

When I was working in corporate,
I documented EVERYTHING
I thought might help me in the future
- my wins,
mistakes by others (my dirt file),
secret relationships
(the boss went to school
with my co-worker),
the brand of chocolate
the CEO’s executive assistant preferred.
The more detailed my notes were,
the more powerful the information was.

And information IS power,
especially when so few of my competition
documented anything.
My documentation saved my job,
snagged me promotions,
helped me sell my projects
into the management team.

Take the time every day
to document.

By k | September 21, 2013 - 6:00 am - Posted in Corporate Games

A loved one works for a company
where supposedly employees are graded
on a bell curve.
Within the group,
evaluations are split from 1 (best) to 5 (worst)
based upon this distribution.
These evaluations drive bonuses.

My loved one was told
that because he was new to the group
and he was with a strong team,
he’d be ranked a 4.
Based upon results, he thought this was bullshit
so he asked
how many people fell into each rank.

The manager said he didn’t have this information.

In other words, it WAS bullshit.
And now my loved one doesn’t trust his manager.

Similar things have happened to me
in the past.
A manager will make a statement
and when I push for more information,
he doesn’t have any facts to back it up.

Expect to back up your statements.
An intelligent employee will ask.

By k | September 14, 2013 - 6:00 am - Posted in Corporate Games

Before going on vacation,
I would look at the things I normally do
during this time
and delegate what HAS to be done.
Then I would seriously ponder
whether or not the other tasks
EVER had to be completed again.


Rohit Bhargava
takes this idea
one step farthe
r

“When you are busy,
one of the challenges of going on vacation
is how to handle your work
when you’re gone.
Some people simply save it
until they return.
The smart people, instead,
actually hand off some of their work
to colleagues or employees
to handle while they are away.

But here’s the really smart part:
When they return,
instead of assuming all their old activities,
they watch how people are performing
and ask themselves
if they really need to take that task back.

Taking vacation, in other words,
can be the ultimate method
to get out of long-term, time-consuming tasks
that you no longer need to do anymore.”

Use vacations
as an excuse to prune or delegate tasks.

By k | September 13, 2013 - 6:00 am - Posted in Corporate Games

When leaving an out-of-office
autoreply message,
value the other person’s time
as much as your own.

As
Kevin Roose
shares

“If your auto-responder includes
more than two ways
to get in touch with you
in an emergency,
you’re doing it wrong.
By the time you get to
“If your message is urgent,
contact me through awayfind.com/joeschmoe,
then text ‘50445′
to my Google Voice number,
then shoot an e-mail
to vacationjoe@gmail.com,”
we’ve already given up.”

Keep it short.
Keep it simple.

By k | September 12, 2013 - 6:00 am - Posted in Corporate Games

A new grad told me recently
that she quit her first full time job
because it was ‘a toxic environment.’

What was toxic about it?

Her boss yelled at her,
calling her an idiot,
and that’s abuse, don’t you know?

Well, sure it is,
but she had no work experience,
she didn’t know what she was doing,
and there isn’t exactly a labor shortage right now.

We all work shitty jobs
when we first start out.
We work long hours for little pay
and we usually don’t have the best managers.
One of my managers could be heard yelling
from the parking lot.
He threw things.
I would come home every night
and cry.

But I sucked it up
because I had a plan
and I needed that job
to get me to the next level.
I didn’t stay there
but I also didn’t quit
until I had another job.

Yes, get the hell out
of a toxic work environment
but leave on your terms.